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Автор Тема: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead  (Прочитано 4377 пати)

Hunza

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Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« на: Април 20, 2009, 08:46:13 »


11th CONFERENCE OF THE BALKAN POLITICAL CLUB
  ________________________________________


MACEDONIA ON THE ROAD TO NATO AND EU

20 - 21 February 2009
Millennium Palace Hotel, Ohrid, Republic of Macedonia

Dr. Lyubomir Ivanov
Bulgarian Academy of Sciences
Chairman of the Atlantic Club of Bulgaria




                  A politician thinks of the next election;
                  a statesman, of the next generation.

                  James Paul Clarke, American politician;
                  attributed also to Sir Winston Churchill


One year after the Bucharest Summit of NATO, the balance of achievements of the Republic of Macedonia in its European and Atlantic aspirations is less than encouraging.  The country is lagging behind other Western Balkan states (such as Albania or Croatia), and appears increasingly isolated from the mainstream development processes in the region.  The initial natural sympathy of the international community towards a small new state has been expended during the last few years with hardly any results. Nowadays all the advice coming from NATO and EU is addressed to the Republic of Macedonia rather than to Greece, including criticism of particular steps of Skopje perceived as unhelpful and irrational.  For the Western World understands and expects rational behaviour, fearing what is believed to be unpredictable and bringing potential security risks.  Unfortunately, during the last year the Republic of Macedonia has been seen as doing in its dispute with neighbouring Greece rather the opposite to what NATO and EU membership required or what both NATO and EU were expecting Skopje to do.  As a result, the Republic of Macedonia is perceived as a potential factor of ‘Balkanization’ of NATO and EU – something the latter are less than keen on importing in any great quantities.

Since Bucharest we have witnessed numerous moves of the ruling political élite in Skopje that are apparently internally oriented towards consolidating more and more political power, securing a landslide victory in the last year’s early parliamentary elections, and now set to win the forthcoming presidential and local elections as well.  Ethnic nationalism has been activated to fuel this process, including expansionism to areas of history regarded by neighbouring nations as their own historical legacy.  Controversial initiatives were undertaken, like renaming airports and highways after Alexander the Great and Philip of Macedon, or bringing up minority rights and property claims against Greece.  Regardless of their possible justification, none of those steps helped create the favourable atmosphere of mutual trust and goodwill needed for the resolution of the dispute with Greece.  However, such policies have proved highly rewarding as elections winner, and boosting unheard of public support (some 60%) for the government of a country in dire and worsening economic situation.  Therefore, either the government’s claims of NATO and EU accession being their priority are insincere, or the ruling political élite in Skopje does not understand well the rules, standards and values of NATO and EU.  The latter differ from e.g. the UN in not accepting everybody as one is, essentially being two clubs of the likely minded instead, with their own rules and procedures.  There is simply no way of joining those clubs other than by accepting their rules.  More so that obviously, the Republic of Macedonia is in greater need and has more to benefit from joining the clubs than they are to benefit from this particular enlargement.

One absolute condition for NATO and EU membership is the proven willingness and ability to develop good neighbourly relations.  A number of other Central and East European nations used to have problems with their neighbours – suffices to mention the minority issues between Romania, Hungary and Slovakia – yet all those disputes and disagreements have been timely resolved.  By contrast, the Republic of Macedonia went to Bucharest without having settled its dispute with Greece, bringing unprecedented confusion and embarrassment to the summit agenda.  One year later, the prospects of resolution seem as remote as ever.  Moreover, one should bear in mind that the Atlantic Alliance is specifically wary of candidate member states entangled in disputes with their neighbours that may carry security risks, even when the disagreements are with third parties (like the case of Georgia and Ukraine vis-à-vis Russia).  Here the dispute is with a NATO and EU member state (Greece), and while the Republic of Macedonia is a valued NATO partner, its strategic importance for the Alliance is not so great (as is that of Turkey or Ukraine for instance) as to warrant some special treatment or concessions.

If I permit myself a prediction, the ruling élite’s current policies are likely to keep yielding domestic political gains for some more time, probably carrying the popular vote in the forthcoming presidential and local elections, yet building in the process new walls between the Republic of Macedonia and its neighbours.  Moreover, present tendencies do not rule out the possibility of deterioration in the bilateral relations not only with Greece but also with Bulgaria.  Indeed, Bulgarian public attitudes are becoming increasingly skeptical about Skopje’s policies, and those attitudes are formed by no governmental public diplomacy either.  Besides, the continuation of present Skopje policies is likely to meet less and less understanding with NATO and EU.

In the field of economy, the Republic of Macedonia has been getting fairly modest direct foreign investments so far, and the experience of NATO enlargement in Eastern Europe suggests that as long as a country stays outside the Alliance it is unlikely to attract major foreign investors, which is particularly detrimental in times of world economic crisis.  Therefore, the present course of development is bound to bring further economic, social, ethnic, and eventually political hardship.

The escalation of ethnocentric Macedonian nationalism is at odds with the country’s ethnic dynamics and realities, where the influential Albanian community has little use for ethnic Macedonian nationalism.  Earlier or later, divergent ethnic attitudes towards the country’s national priorities are going to challenge the ethnic cohabitation and peace.  Recent carefully worded warnings by Albanian political leaders (which fall on deaf ears, not unlike 2001), and indicative instances of ethnic tension in Struga and elsewhere might be just the proverbial tip of the iceberg.  The big question is: What would the Macedonian Albanians do if they are to see one day Kosovo and Albania in NATO and EU, with the Republic of Macedonia staying outside?

Unfortunately, this admittedly dark scenario is not so impossible.  While Skopje politicians might claim they are following the majority wishes of the ethnic Macedonians, political élites bear responsibility for the public attitudes in the first place (more so when such attitudes are government sponsored), and second, at some point the leaders may become hostages to public attitudes they have helped create.  That would be a point when the scenario becomes irreversible.  Maybe that point of irreversibility is nearing, maybe it has already passed.  If there is some more time available though, it would be few years at most, precious time for determinate statesman action not to be wasted.

  ________________________________________

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Hunza

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #1 на: Април 21, 2009, 05:16:16 »

Мислам дека оваа порака не е за овде, туку за 'Актуелни теми'.
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betina

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #2 на: Април 21, 2009, 05:56:15 »

Мислам дека оваа порака не е за овде, туку за 'Актуелни теми'.
Според мен е за някой английски форум!
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Hunza

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #3 на: Април 21, 2009, 07:17:55 »

Не знаев дека саjтот на  Бугарскиот културен клуб - Скопjе има англиска верзиja :-)
« Последно менување: Април 21, 2009, 07:31:44 Hunza »
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ohrid1941

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #4 на: Април 21, 2009, 07:50:46 »

Мислам дека оваа порака не е за овде, туку за 'Актуелни теми'.
Според мен е за някой английски форум!

Според точка 13) од правилата, не е погрешно да се пишува на англиски, но овој документ на проф. Иванов го има и на български. Би го замолил колегата Хунза да го прикачи него, наместо англиската верзија.
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Hunza

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #5 на: Април 21, 2009, 09:25:43 »

Не се сеќавам на бугарска верзиjа.
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betina

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #6 на: Април 21, 2009, 09:29:29 »

Мислам дека оваа порака не е за овде, туку за 'Актуелни теми'.
Според мен е за някой английски форум!

Според точка 13) од правилата, не е погрешно да се пишува на англиски, но овој документ на проф. Иванов го има и на български. Би го замолил колегата Хунза да го прикачи него, наместо англиската верзија.
А неписаните правила?Не се заяждам, но смятам че всеки народ у дома си би трябвало да пише на своя език.
Ако става въпрос за реплика или някакъв цитат- да, добре, но тук става въпрос за цяла тема?!
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Hunza

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #7 на: Април 21, 2009, 09:44:54 »

Не се секираj, ова е некоj амерички диjалект на Бугарскиот jазик.
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betina

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #8 на: Април 21, 2009, 09:56:26 »

Не се секираj, ова е некоj амерички диjалект на Бугарскиот jазик.
Мдаа, вече съм наясно какъв човек стои срещу мен!Попътен ти вятър в наглостта, може пък и да прогресираш с нея!
Остани си със здраве!

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Hunza

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Одг: Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead
« Одговори #9 на: Април 21, 2009, 10:20:51 »

Не се срдам иако моjот принцип е – никогаш лични пресметки.
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Hunza

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Одг: Ахмети бара брзо решавање на спорот со Грција
« Одговори #10 на: Мај 06, 2009, 05:28:30 »

Ахмети бара брзо решавање на спорот со Грција

http://www.makfax.com.mk/mk-mk/Details.aspx?itemID=3916

Етничкото разидување помеѓу Македонци и Албанци за кое предупредува докладот "Republic of Macedonia –– Trouble on the Road Ahead" станува се повидно.

Уште, како што се очекуваше:

Ахмети веќе не молчи

http://www.a1.com.mk/vesti/default.aspx?VestID=108156
« Последно менување: Мај 06, 2009, 09:48:58 Hunza »
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