Monday, March 30, 2009


When I woke up on Saturday morning, the alley behind my apartment was filled with poorly-designed flyers. They were in support of the building of a Macedonian Orthodox Church on the main public square in Skopje, giving such compelling arguments as "The Square is an unfinished area of the City" and "Every European square has a Church. We should too." On the back was a picture of Jesus, and the quote, "Forgive them father, they know not what they do."

This flyer was meant to rally people to the square that morning in support of the building of the church, as opponents of a church-on-the-square were holding their own rally. From what I understand, the opponents were students from the Faculty of Architecture, and opposed to the location, rather than the church itself.

A little background information: The Macedonian government pays to build Orthodox churches and giant crosses on top of mountains. This is naturally irritating to the Muslim Albanians, who I doubt recieve any money from the government to build their mosques (most of the money comes from abroad) and to those people who would prefer money be spent on things like education and health care. This new church is being built on an already-crowded square, in a location where both mosques and churches have previously existed. And, on an aesthetic note, the construction wall blocks the main cafe-bar area from views of the river.

So, a handful of students from the Faculty of Architecture show up for a peaceful protest, and somebody trucks in several hundred counter-protesters from outside of Skopje. Violence ensued, of course. Eric has an excellent post about it. Balkan Insight's editorial is here. Justin recently wrote about the interesting identity issues in Macedonia, which most definitely come into play here. And has an article up about the image problems of the current government.

The first round of elections were peaceful, by the way, so that's great news. The second round is coming up soon.


Admins said...

Dear Seth, just letting you know that we cited you (as well as your fellow "polysemic") on a weblog ( we initiated to make information about the recent events available to an international public (since we find this an important issue that needs to be talked about, and not only in Skopje). Hope you don't mind the condensing. Comments are welcome.

Dr Purva Pius said...

Hello Everybody,
My name is Mrs Sharon Sim. I live in Singapore and i am a happy woman today? and i told my self that any lender that rescue my family from our poor situation, i will refer any person that is looking for loan to him, he gave me happiness to me and my family, i was in need of a loan of S$250,000.00 to start my life all over as i am a single mother with 3 kids I met this honest and GOD fearing man loan lender that help me with a loan of S$250,000.00 SG. Dollar, he is a GOD fearing man, if you are in need of loan and you will pay back the loan please contact him tell him that is Mrs Sharon, that refer you to him. contact Dr Purva Pius,via email:( Thank you.


1. Name Of Applicant in Full:……..
2. Telephone Numbers:……….
3. Address and Location:…….
4. Amount in request………..
5. Repayment Period:………..
6. Purpose Of Loan………….
7. country…………………
8. phone…………………..
9. occupation………………
11.Monthly Income…………..

Email Kindly Contact: