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Why the Macedonians are not "Slavs"?


Macedonia's former president Kiro Gligorov in the Toronto Star on March 15, 1992 said: "We are Macedonians but we are Slav Macedonians. That's who we are! We have no connection to Alexander the Greek and his Macedonia. The ancient Macedonians no longer exist, they had disappeared from history long time ago. Our ancestors came here in the 5th and 6th century (AD)."


In an interview with the Ottawa Citizen, Gyordan Veselinov, Macedonia's Ambassador to Canada said: "We are not related to the northern Greeks who produced leaders like Philip and Alexander the Great. We are a Slav people and our language is closely related to Bulgarian" and that "there is some confusion about the identity of the people of this country."


As unbelievable as it may seem, these Macedonian politicians are actually wrong on this issue. Here are the major reasons why today's Macedonians are not "Slavs" or "Slav Macedonians" but direct descendents of the ancient Macedonians:


1. First, Gligorov and Veselinov are not historians, but politicians.  History should not be written by politicians but should be left to the historians.


2. The Macedonian historians do not support the claim that today's Macedonians are "Slavs" who came in the 6th century.  The latest book "THE DESCENDANTS OF ALEXANDER THE GREAT OF MACEDON - The arguments and evidence that today's Macedonians are descendants of the ancient Macedonians", puts an end to the "Slav" claim. 


3. This "Slav" claim was an old communistic propaganda influenced by Russia and Yugoslavia during the period while Macedonia was part of communist Yugoslavia (1945-1991) and both Gligorov and Veselinov were taught this line of the then official history, which was dictated by Slav Russia and Slav Serbia (Yugoslavia).  However, this "political history" is now outdated.


4.   The roots of the Macedonians are in ancient Macedonia in Europe since 8th century BC, not in Ukraine.  This is the reason why they do not call themselves "Slavs", but have continuously called themselves Macedonians for centuries, ever since that 8th century BC to today.


5.   Historical evidence (unknown to Gligorov and Veselinov of the communist school) shows that the Macedonians have called themselves "Macedonians" in every century since Alexander, both before and after the coming of the Slavs in Macedonia in the 6th century.  It is the Slavs that were assimilated into the Macedonians, not wise-versa, and the Macedonians continued to call themselves to this day what they are - Macedonians. 


6. And most convincing of all is the fact that a genetic research had proven that the Macedonians are not Slavs but are direct descendants of the ancient Macedonians. 


7. The Macedonians in the Republic of Macedonia, and the Macedonian minorities in Greece, Bulgaria, and Albania, continue to proudly call themselves "Macedonians" and consider the "Slav" label an insult and racial slur.  The western press was literary bombarded by mails, faxes, and emails from outraged Macedonians who despised being called "Slavs" during the Albanian aggression on Macedonia in 2001 and always voice their discontent when anyone tries to re-label them into anything else but what they are. 

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