For nearly twenty years, Hellas and Skopje have been unable to solve their long standing dispute over the right to the call Macedonia and its history their own. To many outsiders, the issue seems ridiculous, two countries fighting over a name. Many ask who is Hellas or Skopje to claim the rights to history or to tell another country who they are? This ongoing conflict, however, isn’t about controlling the rights of history nor is it about one country trying to dictate another’s name. It is about a new ethnic consciousness searching for its own identity to legitimize their newly found independence, while another ethnicity fights to preserve its own identity against theft.
A real solution will not be found in compromises that allow dual names or geographical indicators. Only to be ‘suggested’ to the international world to adopt, while revisionism continues against Alexander the Great and Ancient Hellas. The underline issue will not be solved and problems between Athens and Skopje will reemerge at a later date. Perhaps this is what the world wants, to keep Athens and Skopje as little pawns in their own political plans for the Balkans. How else can you explain such name solutions like the ‘Republic of Northern Macedonia”, “New Macedonia”, or “Macedonia (Skopje)”. None of which solve the underlining issue at the core of the name dispute, which is the need for Slavs of Skopje to find their own unique identity. Each one of these names allows for the continued identity theft of the Macedonian history and culture from Hellenes. The irrendist and revisionist attacks from Skopje will not end whether they are official called “Northern’ or “New”, they will continue to identify as ‘Macedonian’ and will continue to distort Hellenic history to create a new warped ‘Macedonian ethnicity’, which will eventually lead to a military confrontation.
The best solution for all parties is one that allows for the people of Skopje to continue identifying themselves as ‘Macedonians’ and allows for the continued protection of the Hellenic history and identity. The only plausible outcome would be for Skopjean to reject Slavism and embrace Hellenism. If the Skopjean were willing to officially except the historical Hellenic identity of Macedonia, adopted the real Macedonian language – Hellenic and unite with the Hellenic state as fellow Hellenes. Peace and stability would finally come to the Balkans. This would allow for Macedonia to remain securely apart of Hellenism and for Skopjeans to truly become Macedonians, the Hellenic identity they are so obsessed with. However, this possibility does not seem likely.
The most logical name suggestions like, Republic of Skopje, Central Balkan Republic and Vardaska have all been dismissed by Skopje. We are since forth forced to look at new possibilities for a name solution. One such possibility is Paionia. This ancient kingdom found north of Macedonia was located mostly inside the present day borders of Skopje. This allows the Skopjean to adopt an ancient identity without infringing on Hellenism or any of their neighbors ethnic identities. The next possibility is Dardania, an ancient kingdom which once controlled part of Northern Skopje. This seems to be the best solution on several different levels. First the Skopjean would finally break with Slavism and readopt Illyrianism, a cultural movement that began in Croatia and laid the path of the concept of Yugoslavism. Second the adoption of Illyrianism over Slavism will help relations with the country’s largest minority group, the Albanians. This name would bridge the gap between Skopjean and Albanians and bring harmony and peace to their young country. My third and final suggest for a name solution is the Bulgar Republic of Macedonia or Republic of Bulgar Macedonia. Skopjean could identify as ‘Bulgardonians’, a name that takes their Bulgarian ancestry and partial geographic location, and fuses them into a new identity for Skopje.