Blog A reader comment Pr. Tompkins arguments as regards the known letter that sent and cosign from 315 wo

A reader comment Pr. Tompkins arguments as regards the known letter that sent and cosign from 315 wo

Posted by Author on in Blog 49

I have posted my complete rebuttal to Daniel Tompkins post here http://archaeoastronomy.wordpress.com/2009/05/29/macedonia-from-bad-to-worse/#comment-39246.

Unfortunately, Alun did not post the last part of it.

Dan Tompkins, you say:

"Responding to Prof. Miller’s presentation on “Paeonia,” a name that the Greek government itself is not, I noted, putting forward, I commented on the growth of modern Macedonian ethnicity"
Dan, the current political position of the Sovereign Government of the Hellenic Republic is neither permanent, nor binding. There is no binding treatyin place between the two sovereign nations, in this respect. So, you can assert that the name "Paeonia" is not the present position of the Hellenic Republic. However, you can not say anything about what the current or future democratically elected Sovereign Government of the Hellenic Republic may or may not do. The current stance does not procludes the Sovereign Government of the Hellenic Republic from altering it in the near future. The Greek Government, unlike the Government of the FYROM is not playing games, such as holding Referendums to deal with this matter, in which a number of EU member states have already critisized the Government of the FYROM for using such chutzpah tactics. Please note, what is being discussed here is completely hypothetical, and should not be construed or misconstrued, in any way, shape or form, to represent positions or opinions of the Sovereign Government of the Hellenic Republic. These are completely my own pesonal opinions.


Dan Tompkins, you say:

"The best recent historians of this topic seem to agree that the term “Macedonia” has been legitimate since around 1900 for the region now including the Republic of Macedonia, applying to the combined vilayets of Kosovo, Salonica and Monastir. The historians also record the vigilance of the neighboring states and of the Great Powers in suppressing Macedonian aspirations."

Dan, I would assert that historians have a very different slant on the historical ethnogenisis of the Slavic people of the FYROM, than what you are putting forward. If you intend making references to higher authorities, if you are to be taken seriously, you need to cite the references. You have not done, so in this instance, so once again very little weight, if any can be given to your assertion. A note, to those who are genuinely interested in learning about this phenomenon of ethnogenisis I suggest they go to their nearest major library and seek out and read as many books from as many authors, and then make up their mind. Just as a primer, see the following two excerpts:

"The political and military leaders of the Slavs of Macedonia at the turn of the century seem not to have heard Misirkov's call for a separate Macedonian national identity; they continued to identify themselves in a national sense as Bulgarians rather than Macedonians. (“The Macedonian Conflict: Ethnic Nationalism in a Transnational World", Princeton Univ. Press, December 1995, p.64)

Ferdinand Schevill, American professor of history:

"Although in some areas (of geographical Macedonia) the various groups were all inextricably intermingled, it is pertinent to point out that in other sections a given race decidedly predominated. In the southern districts, for instance, and more particularly along the coast, the Greeks, a city people given to trade, had the upper hand, while to the north of them the Slavs, peasants for the most part working the soil, held sway. These Slavs may properly be considered as a special “Macedonian” group, but since they were closely related to both Bulgars and Serbs and had, moreover, in the past been usually incorporated in either the Bulgar or Serb state, they inevitably became the object of both Bulgar and Serb aspirations and an apple of discord between these rival nationalities. As an oppressed people on an exceedingly primitive level, the Macedonian Slavs had as late as the congress of Berlin exhibited no perceptible national consciousness of their own. It was therefore impossible to foretell in what direction they would lean when their awakening came; in fact, so indeterminate was the situation that under favourable circumstances they might even develop their own particular Macedonian consciousness. ("History of the Balkans": From the Earliest Times to the Present Day, 1922, reprint 1991)


Dan Tompkins, you say:

"The historians also record the vigilance of the neighboring states and of the Great Powers in suppressing Macedonian aspirations. So Iconoclast’s argument is really with contemporary historians, some of whom are Greek."
Dan, stop creating sophistry these people that you call "Macedonian", considered themselves Bulgarians at the turn of the previous century. To attempt to say other wise is deliberately conflating the facts.

Dan, I don't think that anyone is arguing that the Slavs, of the FYROM, don't exist and should not be allowed equal rights of self-detemination, for this, self-evidently, be an oxymoron argument. However, when the citizens of the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, in their act of asserting their equal rights of self-determination to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, have instantaneously, inextricably, and demonstrably diminished the equal rights of self-determination of ethnic Greek citizens of the Hellenic Repbulic who assert their equal rights to self-determination and to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but simply, Macedonian of Greek heritage, having no ethnic or cultral affinity or ties whatsoever with the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje then we have a problem.

The Greeks do not want to impinge on the self-determination of another people, in any way, shape or form. However, there is one undeniable caveat that must apply, vis-a-vis, to both parties when the act of self-determination is asserted by any one party. The caveat being, that the party who asserts their equal right of self-determination can not in any way, shape, or form, diminish or make diminutive the equal right of self-determination of any other party. That is, each party, vis-a-vis, must have *equal rights*, which is exactly the wording used in the UN Charter [1]. So, any decision made, vis-a-vis, by one party that is inextricably connected, mutually dependent on, and affected by, the counter-party can *not* be made in a uni-lateral manner. Each party, vis-a-vis, must appreciate the sensibilities of their counter-party. It needs to understood that the Slavs, of the FYROM, are not the only ones who have equal rights to self-determination. The Greeks also have that equal right.

By the way Dan, one of your own ambassadors Henry Morgenthau so the region of Macedonia a lot different than what your making it out to be:

Henry Morgenthau, American politician, ambassador to the Ottoman Empire during the First World War:

"The Greek War of Independence, which came to a successful conclusion in 1832, affected less than one half of the Greeks in the Turkish Empire. It did not bring freedom to the Greeks of Macedonia and Thrace, of Crete and the Aegean Islands, nor to the more than two million Greeks in Asia Minor and Constantinople […] When the Turks and the Bulgarians left, Macedonia remained a purely Greek region." ("I was sent to Athens", Doubleday, Doran & Company, 1929)

and

"Finally, Krste Misirkov, who had clearly developed a strong sense of his own personal national identity as a Macedonian and who outspokenly and unambiguously called for Macedonian linguistic and national separatism, acknowledged that a ‘Macedonian’ national identity was a relatively recent historical development. ("The Macedonian Conflict: Ethnic Nationalism in a Transnational World”, Princeton Univ. Press, December 1995, p.63)

Dan Tompkins, you say:

" So Iconoclast’s argument is really with contemporary historians..."

Speaking for myself, Dan, if I may, so as to set the record straight. That is not what I would conclude, using my own analysis. So, Dan, since you have come to such a conclusion, please, go ahead, and share your reasoning with the rest of us. I'm sure we would all be quite interested.

Dan Tompkins, you say:

"(For an analogous case of recent ethnic development, consider the Palestinians, who like Macedonians emerged from the Ottoman Empire and progressively established their identity. Rashid Khalidi is worth reading.)"

I shall do so. No doubt the the above reference will be a worthwhile read, and I do not wish to question its relevance to this matter, before having read it, however, I am somewhat skeptical of its analogical strength, save that, I shall keep an open mind.

Dan Tompkins, you say:
"The recent development of Macedonian ethnicity is dismissed by some Greeks, who are justly proud of using the oldest, or perhaps second oldest (Chinese writing is debated) continuously used written language in the world. But it’s hard to see a strong historical argument for denying that the inhabitants of a region called Macedonia are Macedonian."

Dan, your argument is entirely fallaceous and inparticular your arguments exhibits the following fallacies:

1. The fallacy of ambiguity, specifically, the fallacy of equivication.

Your argument cunningly asserts the word "region", rather than the word "country" as a means of asserting claim on the entire region of Macedonia, rather than just the FYROM. This is completely unforgivable, if this was intentional. I am sorry, Dan, but you are loosing your credibility with me.

2. The fallacy of relevance, specifically, an appeal to the people.

You are attempting to arouse emotions, by making a sweeping fallaceous statement in an attemot to portray the Greek character in a "bad light". Your assertion is offensive to me, and most certainly, to the majority of Greeks.

3. The fallacy of relevance, specifically, a straw man fallacy

In particular, you have attempted to distort the argument and then attacks the distorted argument. Sorry, but that is *not* what the Greeks are arguing about, but rather we are arguing on the points as outlined in the above post http://archaeoastronomy.wordpress.com/2009/05/29/macedonia-from-bad-to-worse/#comment-39253, dated 2009 June 15, and certainly not the above ludicrous and fallaceous assertion. I suggest interested parties read that post, although for convenience I have duplicated the argument below:

1. Present day inhabitants of a nation state are citizens of that nation state.
2. Citizens of a nation state have sovereign rights.
3. Citizens of a nation state have equal rights to self-determination.
4. Citizens of one nation state must not diminish in any way, shape, or form, the equal rights of self-determination of citizens of another nation state.

5. The Government and its citizens of a nation state must in no way support, particiapate in, and/or assist in any activities or propaganda that are deemed irridentist in nature to another nation state, and the Government of the nation state where such irredentist activity is taking place, must take all immediate steps to ensure that any such irredentist activity immediately ceases and desists against another nation state.
5. The citizens of the nation state of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia have asserted their equal rights of self-determination and called themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but equally, a cohort of ethnic Greek citizens of the Hellenic Repbulic have the equal rights of self-determination and to assert their rights to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but simply, Macedonian of Greek heritage, having no ethnic or cultral affinity or ties whatsoever with the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje.
7. Therefore, in conclusion:

WHEREAS, the citizens of the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, in their act of asserting their equal rights of self-determination to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, have instantaneously, inextricably, and demonstrably diminished the equal rights of self-determination of ethnic Greek citizens of the Hellenic Repbulic who assert their equal rights to self-determination and to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but simply, Macedonian of Greek heritage, having no ethnic or cultral affinity or ties whatsoever with the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje;

WHEREAS, the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, by asserting their equal rights of self-determination to call their nation state by the appellation, the Republic of Macedonia, or simply, Macedonia, has instantaneously, inextricably, and demonstrably diminished the equal rights of self-determination of the ethnic Greek citizens of the Hellenic Repbulic to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but simply, Macedonian of Greek heritage, having no ethnic or cultral affinity or ties whatsoever with the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje;

WHEREAS, the ethnic Greek citizens of the Hellenic Repbulic, who through their domicile and/or place of birth in the Province of Macedonia of Northern Greece assert their equal rights to self-dertermination and call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but simply, Macedonian of Greek heritage, having no ethnic or cultral affinity or ties whatsoever with the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje;

WHEREAS, the ethnic Greek citizens of the Hellenic Repbulic, who assert their equal rights of self-determination to call themselves by the appellation of simply, Macedonian, but simply, Macedonian of Greek heritage having no ethnic or cultral affinity or ties whatsoever with the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, also assert their equal rights and that they must not be disadvantaged in the international community, or international fora, by having their Hellenic character in any way, shape, or form, diminished or made diminutive by the act of another nation state.

WHEREAS, the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, by monopolising the name Macedonia, in all the ways that they have done so, have diminshed the equal rights of self-determination of the Government and citizens of the nation state of the Hellenic Republic.

WHEREAS, the Government of the the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, must cease and disist in the use of pedagogic material that exhibts psuedo-history that has been developed by the Government of the nation state, whose capital is Skopje, and in which this material is neither supported, nor recognised, by the leading international scientific and pedagogic communities.

WHEREAS, the Government and the citizens of the nation state, whose capital city is Skopje, have shown by way of support, particiapation in, and/or assistance in activities or propaganda that are deemed irridentist in nature to the Government and the citizens of the nation state of the Hellenic Republic, and the Government of the nation state, whose capital is Skopje, where such irredentist activity is taking place, has not taken all immediate steps to ensure that any such irredentist activity immediately ceases and desists against the nation state of the Hellenic Republic.

The Greeks do not want to impinge on the self-determination of another people, in any way, shape or form. However, there is one undeniable caveat that must apply, vis-a-vis, to both parties when the act of self-determination is asserted by any one party. The caveat being, that the party who asserts their equal right of self-determination can not in any way, shape, or form, diminish or make diminutive the equal right of self-determination of any other party. That is, each party, vis-a-vis, must have *equal rights*, which is exactly the wording used in the UN Charter [1]. So, any decision made, vis-a-vis, by one party that is inextricably connected, mutually dependent on, and affected by, the counter-party can *not* be made in a uni-lateral manner. Each party, vis-a-vis, must appreciate the sensibilities of their counter-party. It needs to understood that the Slavs, of the FYROM, are not the only ones who have equal rights to self-determination. The Greeks also have the same equal rights.

Just like a Texan, is both a pround Texan and a proud American, equally I am a proud Macedonian and a proud Hellene (Greek). And no one, has the right to deny me of my God given right to self-determine myself as a Hellene (Greek) and a Macedonian, not you Dan Tompkins, not the Slavs, of the newly established nation of the FYROM, nor anybody else. I will not let it happen.


Dan Tompkins, you say:

"And it is not a zero sum game. What Iconoclast calls the “soma of Greek society” is far more stable and resilient than he portrays it. It is not “impinged on” in any serious way."

Dan, I disagree with your conclusion. I have no idea on what grounds you have arrived at your above conclusion. Your conclusion is based on purely supposition. Have you lived in Greece, especially Northern Greece for any considerable length of time, to put yourself up as an authority, and to assert your above claims? What do you mean by "far more stable and resilient than he portrays it", how are you measuring this?

I assert that your argument is exhibiting the fallacy of weak induction, specifically the fallacy of appealing to unqualified authority (Argumentum ad Verecundiam), in this case yourself, and you have not demonstrated that you are qualified to reach such a conclusion. Furthermore, your argument is exhibiting the fallacy of relevance, specifically, the fallacy of appealing to pity, and the fallacy of presumption, specifically, the fallacy of begging the question. Dan, I am therefore begging the question to you?


Dan Tompkins, you say:

"As to the Absolut Vodka advertisement: it ran in Mexico for about two months, February – early April 2008, when American anti-immigration media (Fox News, Lou Dobbs) picked it up ...... scourge of reckless advertising copywriters."

Dan, you know better than me about the feelings of your country men and women. I do not live in the U.S., and the information I have received on the Absolut Vodka contraversey was through my local main-stream-media and via the Internet, as opposed to your good self living in the country, and thus you have a view of "the facts on the ground", to borrow a terminology coined by the Israeli Military, that I and others do not.

As someone from the outside, looking in, it was presented to us in the main-stream-media as quite broad demographic of U.S. citizens who felt sufficiently offended by such an advertisment to react in the manner that they did. I am not in a position to judge, nor do I believe I have any right to even suggest making such a judgement, since I am not a citizen of your country. Whether it was right or wrong, that is for the citizens of the U.S. to decide, and only for them to decide and no one else.

Dan, I would hope that you are not suggesting that your fellow U.S. citizens, who show their patrotism towards their country should be denied their right to voice their concerns about something that they consider passionate enough to raise in their own country. I am by no means an expert on the U.S., but from my limited knowledge of your country, I understand that you Americans cherish your freedom of speech, and that it is also engrained into your constitution, so that all U.S. citizens have their, God given right, to freedom of expression. I would hope, Dan, that you are not suggesting that this be in some way diminished or made diminuative any way, I don't think you would have a great deal of support in your own country to reduce peoples freedom of expression. Dan, your not really suggesting that are you?


Dan Tompkins, you say:

"Iconoclast performs a service by pointing to the irrationality of anti-Hispanic feeling in the US, and to the Miami-based rage against Castro of which Cuban-Americans are major victims. These are lousy models for productive interstate relations, but the Cuba parallel is instructive. It has prevented Cuban refugees here from communicating with their relatives, and has allowed corporations from other countries to steal a march on the USA in Cuba, while bringing no discernible benefit — prompting us to ask, what gain has accrued to Greece from its own economic blockades of a neighbor?"

Dan, it is not for me to say, whether such an act is right or wrong in your country. I do not have the right to judge, since I am not a citizen of your country. My interest in raising these two examples is simply to demonstrate that a Sovereign Government has the right and responsibility towards the protection of its interests and that of its citizens. The U.S. may be fully justified in taking the position it has taken against Cuba. As I have already said, I can not say, nor do I believe I have the right to say, or assert my opinion in the affairs of another freedom loving country, such as the U.S.

"Finally, American readers may want to ponder Iconoclast’s claim that the UN (only one of several groups that have criticized human rights violations in Greece) “is an organ created and established through a hegemonic power, that is, the US.” If he’s going to align himself with the critics of Absolut Vodka, he’ll find many of these believe the UN is run by foreigners and is completely opposed to US interests."

Dan, I'm really perplexed at your line of reasoning, it is by no way rational to reach such a conclusion about my thinking, it simply is not true! It is a fact that the UN is a political organ and that it was put in place, under the leadership of the hegemonic power, being the U.S. to replace the League of Nations. There is nothing ominus about that fact. Any interested party, can open a history book to realise this is a truism.

The remainder of your argument is fabricated rhetoric. As I have already said I do not think I have the right to take any position in your countries domestic affairs. This is for the citizens of the U.S. to decide, and not for any foreigner to give their opinon. A foreigner that does so, I suggest is overstepping their mark. So, I can't see how I could be taking sides, if I do not consider that it is in my place to interfere within U.S. domestic affairs. Dan, as I respectfully do not interfere or pass judgements on your countries domestic affairs, I would appreciate that you reciprocate that courtesy.

Dan, it appears that you are deliberately suppressing and omitting evidence. Rather than the Greece having been criticized for human rights violations, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM) has been heavily criticized for human rights violations towards its Albanian, Turkish, Serbs and Roma ethnic minorities. Relations between the FYROM government and the country’s large Albanian minority have been a persistent internal problem. Concentrated on the FYROM’s borders with Albania and the Serbian province of Kosovo (administered by UN), where 90 percent of the population is ethnic Albanian, the FYROM’s Albanians resent and resist what they regard as inferior status and discrimination. A law enacted in 1992 requires 15 years of residency for citizenship, disqualifying many ethnic Albanians who moved between Kosovo (administered by UN) and the FYROM, and the government has tried to suppress an Albanian-language university in Tetovo. However, the ethnic Albanian parties have had a high profile in the Sobranje, and at least one of these parties has participated in most of the governments formed since the FYROM’s independence, moderating unrest in the Albanian community. [2]

Lest we forget 2004, when the sizable Albanian minority (25%+) were on the verge of revolt due to fear of ethnic cleansing by the Slav majority, of the FYROM, please see here http://socialistworld.net/eng/2004/10/20balk.html

Finally, I invite all readers from all countries around the World to stop for a moment, and really, critically think about the absurd assertions that Dan Tompkins is putting forward, and see it it what it is, simply propaganda. Dan Tompkins may have a PhD. in the Classics, but lets not forget that 250+ other scholars, and growing, right around the World, also have PhDs' in the Classics who have all chosen to sign Professor Millers legitimate letter to the POTUS Obama, and disagree with Dan Tompkins "view" of the World.

As Dan Tompkins is neither a Slav, nor a Greek from the Balkan region, nor a Scholar of Modern Balkan History, he can neither claim to have any Scholarly authority, with respect to the modern history of the Balkan region. In fact, given the evidence presented, he has very little, infact, to say about this controversy. So, Dan, I appreciate that you have your opinion on this matter, but the arguments and the conclusion that you posit, are your own personal layman controversialists opinions, and really nothing more.

So, all interested parties should not see Dan Tompkins talking with his "PhD hat on", but rather his "layman hat on." We can, therefore, only conclude that Dan Tompkins can also be placed within the cohort of foreign amateurs when he steps outside his area of expertise and talks about this dispute. The following quote, sums up, what a controversialists really knows about a subject, when they don't have a good handle on the facts.

"Something’s happening here and what it is ain’t exactly clear"

— Quoth the Buffalo Springfield circa 1966

Dan, and other interested parties, I recommend you visit the following web site here http://modern-macedonian-history.blogspot.com/, and here http://maktruth.blogspot.com to learn about modern macedonian history. This article is also worth a read http://www.thefreelibrary.com/Time%27s+up+for+%22Macedonian%22+Perverse+Nationalism-a01073904920

Regading the use of the word denizen. I have clearly stated the context I used it in. I provided this clarification due to the ambiguious manner it was interpreted. I don't think there is much value in others attempting to second guess, what I meant. I have stated what I meant, and it was not intended to be used in a manner that could be misinterpreted as condescending. Greek is my mother tounge, English is a second language for me. For those, who wish to make an issue of this are really only discrediting their credibility. Clearly, the medium of a blog does not deliver the same complete sensual experiences that would be available to the interlocutos in a face-to-face discussion, so word meaning can be misinterpreted. We just need to be a little bit more cautious when we use words that are vague. This harping has gone past its use-by-date.

Henry Kissinger, American diplomat:

Journalist: What is your opinion for the problem which Greece has to accept the name Macedonia which the Scopje Government is trying to implement? Henry Kissinger: Look, I believe that Greece is right to object and I agree with Athens. The reason is that I know history which is not the case with most of the others including most of the Government and Administration in Washington. The strength of the Greek case is that of the history which I must say that Athens have not used so far with success. (Management Centre Europe, Paris, 19 June 1992)

[1] Chapter 1, Article 1 of the UN Charter states

2. To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, and to take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace;

[2] Rusinow, Dennison, Hayden, Robert M., and Dyker, David. "Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia." Microsoft® Encarta® 2008 [DVD].


Dan Tompkins, you say:

"Iconoclast provides 4400+ words responding to me. mega biblion is not always mega kakon (“a big book … a big evil”) but wordiness does reduce readership. I’ll respond as briefly as I can. Unless some truly novel point comes up, this will be my last post on the topic."

Yes Mr. Tompkins, if you had bothered to read the post http://archaeoastronomy.wordpress.com/2009/05/29/macedonia-from-bad-to-worse/#comment-39254, where Noam Chomsky explains information asymmetry that exists.

As Noam Chomsky said that goes to the core of your propaganda is

"The kinds of things that I would say on Nightline, you can’t say in one sentence because they depart from standard religion. "

So, Mr. Tompkins if you want to not be flippant then yes such detail is required.

Alun, you have misinterpreted what I meant when I said "Greek speaking people of Ancient Macedonia". I stated a truism, this can not be denied.

In a face-to-face discussion Alun, We would have the ability to enunciate ourselves. You have made numerous cogitative leaps in your process of thinking, which I respectfully see as neither strong or cogent.

From my Slave neigbours to my North, I also respectfully agree to disagree with you, and Aleksandar, you have made your extraordinary assertions, now show us your extraordinary proof. Show us the money, as the Americans would say!

Aleksandar, I am still waiting for the money!

I'm done.