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Fred E. Reed
Salonica Termius

 

[1] "Perhaps more intensely than anywhere else, Truth and History, in the Balkans, are national considerations. In Greece, they are generated and reproduced by what a scholar, who asked that I not reveal his name, termed the "archeological Mafia," and by an academic establishment which maintains an incestuous relationship with the State." [p.xiii]

[2] 'The effacement of the square [Liberty Square] that was once the its heart, its window to the world during the turbulent years when Salonica was the metropolis of Ottoman-ruled Macedonia, is a function of an unavowed modern Greek selective memory syndrom-a condition which dictates that all that does not mesh with the founding myth must be obscured, buried, eliminated, caused to vanish from public historical consciousness." [p.6] [Eradication of anything from the past that suggests connection with the ethnic Macedonians was the order of the day for the Greek government. Not even churches and cemeteries are spared. To erase the Macedonian element from the newly obtained lands [thanks western powers, for your 'just' hand has helped the fanatical Greeks to exercise their cultural genocide against the local ethnic Macedonians] was the most urgent task of the Greek state. Newly arrived christians from Asia, were now occupying the farms and the buildings of the expelled Macedonians.]

[3] "Liberty Square is not a place to linger. Often I circumnavigate it, and always hastily, on my way to or from the west end of the town. Today, lined with bank headquarters, on one side, fast-food restaurants and travel agencies on the other, the square which lies hard by the elegant, despairingly silent maritime passenger terminal, owes its name not to some putative liberation of Greek Macedonia. The embarrassment, for Salonica's masters, is that the Greeks had very little to do with it, except as onlookers." [p.9]

[4] "In Athens, Sofia and Belgrade the carving knives were being sharpened. London, Paris, Moscow and Vienna watched with ill-concealed glee as their general staffs drew up mobilization plans. If Macedonia was to be the meal, Salonica would be the plat de resistance". [p.18]

[5] "The Greeks claim they liberated Salonica," snorts Petropoulos. "But whom did they liberate?" [p.22]

[6] "The 'natives' possess no written language - some say they have no language at all, only a debased patios - their traditions are oral, their history passed on furtively from the mouths of the elders, their songs and dances proscribed. For even well-intentioned, broad-minded men like Mr. Stalidis, they escape examination, cannot be understood, are not easily inserted into the complex analytical schemata which the Greek mind is capable of devising. They are people of the shadows, these Macedonians; phantoms. Their speech, fleeting whispers spirited away by the wind; their land, clods of anonymous earth wrapped in newly-printed title deeds; their existence, a pang of abstract conscience. And though invisible, yet they do not disappear." [p.181]

[7]"Here, in the building which housed the Greek Consulate during the tumultuous years preceding the capture of Ottoman Salonica in 1912, the Museum is dedicated to the proposition that the sole legitimate Macedonian identity is Greek." Strange phenomenon; A Greek consulate in Salonica? Since when do Greeks place consulates in 'their own country'? [p.181]

 

 

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