Conventional reporting on the 2008 Wikileaks cable about the “name negotiations” makes it seem like Tsipras sold out to Macedonia, but it was actually Zaev that sold his country out to Greece, which is actually the reason why the US wanted to install him in power in the first place.
Greece’s main opposition leader Kyriakos Mitsotakis controversially alleged that a recently released 2008 Wikileaks cable written by the American Ambassador to the Republic of Macedonia at the time clearly indicates that Tsipras sold out his country’s interests in order to clinch a deal that he could then present as a political success to his people. The argument goes that Skopje was already going to accept the agreed-upon name of “North Macedonia” over a decade ago but that Athens’ previous governments refused because they didn’t want to recognize their northern neighbor’s distinct ethnic identity and language as Macedonian, even though the prospective “Prespa Agreement” specifically refutes the country’s historical narrative by declaring that neither of these have any connection to antiquity.
Changing The Constitution
For as popular as Mitsotakis’ demagogic comments might be to the Greek populace that’s largely indignant at the so-called “name deal”, which still has to pass a referendum later this month in Macedonia before entering into force anyhow, they’re not an accurate reflection of the 2008 cable itself. Lost amid the media frenzy of recent days is the fact that the former American Ambassador specifically states his assessment that the only potentially acceptable solution for former Macedonian Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski is to include the geographic qualifier in parentheses and for no demands to be made upon his country to change its constitutional name. That’s not what Zaev agreed to, however, since the “North” Macedonia qualifier is left out of parentheses and will require a constitutional amendment to make it the country’s official name.
That represents yet another point of divergence between the US’ secretly reported analysis of Gruevski’s discrete position on the matter and the one that Zaev publicly agreed to since the former Ambassador said that the latter would only accept the “compromise name’s” usage by countries and international organizations that weren’t already referring to the Republic of Macedonia by its constitutional name, while the latter’s concession to change his country’s constitution makes it so that the rest of the world would refer to it as “North Macedonia” pending final approval during this month’s referendum. Importantly, the 2008 cable also mentions how Gruevski warned that Greece wanted to “limit the Macedonian identity, history, use of toponyms”, which is actually what Zaev agreed to earlier this summer.
Erasing Macedonia’s Identity
The author detailed the dystopian details of the “name deal” in an extensive analysis at the time raising awareness about how “Macedonia’s About To Become The World’s First ‘Politically Correct’ Police State”, which should be read by the reader in parallel with this piece in order to see exactly how much sovereignty Zaev agreed to surrender. It’s true that Tsipras backtracked on his predecessor’s strict stance of refusing to allow Macedonians to use that adjective to describe their language and ethnicity, but he importantly forced their leader to go along with the text’s declaration that their use of the word has a separate meaning from Greece’s, which means that their employment of it officially refers to something “distinctly different” from “the Hellenic civilization, history, culture, and heritage of that region from antiquity to present day.”
The claim that the modern-day Republic of Macedonia has some connection or another to ancient Macedonia, which is asserted as being related to Hellenic civilization, lies at the core of its contemporary identity. This means that Zaev essentially agreed to dismantle the very basis of his people’s being as they’ve come to understand it, thereby making the so-called “concession” by Tsipras to “allow” them to still use the word Macedonian for describing themselves to be nothing more than a hollow “reward” devoid of any real significance. This realization more than anything else hammers home the point that Gruevski would have hypothetically agreed to something altogether different from what Zaev did, and suggests that his successor’s eagerness to sell out his country is why the US installed him in power in the first place.
Crvenkovski Sets Gruevski Up
As proof of that, it’s enough to read the rest of the leaked cable describing the former American Ambassador’s conversation with then-President Branko Crvenkovski from the SDSM opposition, who presided over the country at that time while it was transitioning to a change of leadership under VMRO-DPMNE following Gruevski’s victory in that year’s elections. While seemingly concurring with many of the positions that Gruevski had supposedly agreed to, the outgoing president made a very provocative point of suggesting that the VMRO leader is adopting the same delaying tactic as Greece, which could lead to Macedonia being “the last of the Balkans to get into NATO and EU (with Bosnia and Kosovo)”. He then said something that in hindsight probably triggered what would eventually become the 2015-2017 rolling regime change against Gruevski.
Speaking to the former American Ambassador, the outgoing president of what had then just recently become the opposition said that “even in the unlikely event Karamanlis accepts a reasonable proposal on the name (1) Gruevski will run away from responsibility for concluding the deal and (2) if unsuccessful in avoiding responsibility will go to referendum WITHOUT recommending a yes vote to the public.” He added that the incoming Prime Minister might even phrase the question in such a way that Macedonians would instinctively vote against it, concluding that “Gruevski does not see EU and NATO as a sufficiently high priority to risk supporting a decision or a referendum yes.” It’s this last comment about EU and especially NATO membership not being a priority for Gruevski that would have sent alarm bells ringing in Washington.
“Gruevski Must Go!”
Being aware in the present day of what the US thought slightly over a decade ago about Gruevski and his stance towards the “name issue” and most importantly NATO, it’s little wonder that they immediately went to work wiretapping some of the country’s most important people in order to use these recordings as future leverage for pressuring him to surrender on his principled positions and fast-tracking Macedonia’s membership into the American-led military alliance. Reevaluating the past three years in light of what has now been revealed, it’s clear to see that Gruevski resisted these secret demands and that’s the reason why he was framed to take the fall for the CIA’s wiretapping operation, which the US already planned to exploit as a fake news infowar provocation for ginning up Color Revolution pressure against him.
It’s here where SDSM opposition leader Zaev enters the scene as a supposedly “serious player” because the US already promised him power so long as he does what Gruevski wouldn’t, and that’s surrender Macedonia’s identity in order to expedite the state’s entry into NATO, which Crvenkovski predicted to the former American Ambassador would never happen so long as the Prime Minister remains in office. Bearing this in mind, it’s not far-fetched to imagine that Gruevski’s presumably cynical views towards NATO contributed to his eagerness to pragmatically cooperate with Russia and China on their Balkan megaprojects through the region, which would have contributed to the US’ “threat perception” of his government. Without a doubt, this would explain why the US worked so feverishly to bring Zaev to power over the past three years.
Far from being the alleged “proof” of Tsipras selling out Greece, the 2008 Wikileaks cable actually proves just how much of a patriot Gruevski was and provides crucial insight into why the US saw his election as a “threat” to its regional interests. The former Prime Minister wasn’t willing to give Greece what it wanted, even if he was “allowed” to symbolically keep the neutered name of “Macedonia” like Zaev eventually agreed to as the ultimate distraction, and this held up the US’ plans to formally expand NATO to one of its last Balkan holdouts and correspondingly disrupt, control, or influence the expansion of Russian & Chinese influence via their megaprojects through this country. If Gruevski wasn’t going to go along with the “name deal” on Greece’s terms, then he had to go, and was selected as his replacement.
It took roughly two and a half years of various intensities of Hybrid War unrest, fueled from the very beginning by the fake news infowar of the US trying to frame Gruevski for wiretapping his country’s most influential individuals even though this was entirely a preplanned CIA operation to engender the said regime change scenario, but it ultimately succeeded and swiftly saw Zaev carry out a policy of aggressively cleansing the government of the former ruling party and even jailing his predecessor on “corruption” charges in order to send a message. Realizing just how rigged the system is against them at this point and not trusting Zaev and his American handlers to conduct a free and fair referendum on the “name issue”, Macedonian patriots have understandably resigned themselves to peacefully resisting the “lawfare” against their people by boycotting this month’s vote.
It might take another decade or even longer for the truth of these present times to be revealed just like the origins of the recent Hybrid War on Macedonia have unexpectedly been, but the patriots are certain that the evidence will eventually emerge to prove what they truly believe at this point to be a concerted effort to falsify the results of the upcoming referendum in order to fast-track their country into NATO against the people’s will.