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Old 03-10-2017, 07:46 AM   #1
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Default Jason Miko: A Deal with the Devil, Revisited

Almost 15 years ago, in the pages of this newspaper I wrote “A little over two years ago, Eleanor Nagy, who was Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Skopje told me regarding the Ohrid Framework Agreement that 'basically, we made a deal with the devil.' The deal paved the way for the creation of the DUI which is made up mostly of people with absolutely no experience in politics and even less experience in representative government. (Many Macedonians pointed to one DUI member who became Minister of Transport and Communications, noting that his only previous experience in communications was blowing up several Macedonian Telecommunications tower stations). Now that the deal with the Devil has been made, however, we see the Devil going back on his deal. Surprise, surprise.” Today in March of 2017 we see that the devil has come to collect what he believes is due him. Ali Ahmeti was born in violence, and in violence he will eventually go away, to spend eternity separated from God, who loved him and created him.
I know that the anger and ire these days, among most Macedonians, is directed to Zoran Zaev. But, in light of Nagy’s quote, above, it’s worth going back in time, to 2001. My favorite quote by Mr. Ahmeti, which he has never denied, is this from Newsweek, March 22, 2001. In “A Troubled Dream,” author David Binder quotes Mr. Ahmeti as stating “Our aim is solely to remove Slav forces from territory which is historically Albanian.” Patrick Bishop, reporting in The Telegraph on March 13, 2001, in an article entitled “Macedonia Launches Attacks” wrote this: “The Albanian rebels in Macedonia demanded its division along ethnic lines and said they were prepared to plunge the Balkans into another conflict unless their demands were met. An NLA commander in Kosovo urged the West to support its cause or face the consequences. ‘If the international community wants one more war in the Balkans we are ready,’ he said in the first interview by the group. It appeared in the newspaper Fakti.” Today, I invite Mr. Ahmeti to repudiate that statement. I hope he does.

And Peter Beaumont and Nick Wood, writing in The Observer on March 11, 2001 stated: “What the guerrillas are trying to achieve is articulated by Shkelzen Maliqi, a journalist for Radio Free Europe based in Pristina, and writer for Institute of War and Peace Reporting. ‘I am familiar with the ideology, mentality and motivation behind the forces provoking the armed conflict in Macedonia. I have come to know them, especially the émigrés in Europe. They have tried to persuade me that Macedonia is an artificial creation, formed to the detriment of the Albanian nation. They maintain that the enforced division of the Albanian nation was an historical injustice, aimed to prevent it from being equal to its neighbors in the region. That injustice would be rectified, they say, by dividing Macedonia into Slav and Albania parts and allowing the latter to unite with Kosovo or, even better, incorporated into a unitary Albanian state.’” In March 2017, it’s worth remembering these things.

Now journey back with me in time to 2010 when Nancy Pelosi was the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives. Her party, the Democrats, the party of the left, had the majority of seats in the House and then-president Obama wanted to pass a health care bill which, as it turns out seven years later, is a disaster for America. The bill was pushed through the house on party lines – not a single member of the Republican party, the party of the right and of Donald Trump, voted for it. Many people complained that the 2,000 page bill had not been thoroughly discussed and no one single person alive knew all that was in the bill. Most members of congress did not even know the basics of what was in the bill. But how did Pelosi justify passing it? She said and I quote, “We have to pass the bill to know what’s in it.” Today, do Macedonians know what is in the Tirana Platform? Do we have to give the mandate to Zaev and his deal with the devil to know what’s in it? Why can’t Zoran Zaev come clean now and tell the public what is in it? Why so secretive? Is Zaev committed to Macedonia’s name and identity? Is he committed to a unitary state?

Which brings me to this final thought: Racism, bigotry, and discrimination – all of these things are wrong. We should not practice them as individuals and they should not be practiced by institutions, especially governmental institutions. Is there racism, bigotry, and discrimination in Macedonia? Yes. There is in every country. But here is the most important point: it is not institutionalized at a governmental level. Yes, we as individuals are all prone to engage in racism, bigotry, and discrimination. We are but fallen, sinful creatures. We have all, at some point, had feelings and thoughts along those lines. Fortunately, most people do not act out on those. But there is not institutional racism, bigotry, and discrimination on a governmental level in Macedonia. No matter how much people scream and yell about being second class citizens, they are not. On the other hand there are some leaders who profit – politically and monetarily – from telling their people they are victims. And that is wrong. All of what is rumored to be contained in the Tirana Platform goes far beyond the Ohrid Framework Agreement (another reason that we should know what is in the platform). The internationals told us and guaranteed that the OFA would be the end-all-be-all for rights for Macedonian’s ethnic Albanians. Apparently, they lied.
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