Thursday, January 17, 2008
Deny the Venizelote Revanchistes!
A Cymru Rouge press release:
The BBC recently started calling Macedonia Macedonia. It had hitherto dubbed it the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, which sounds like the sort of thing Prince changes his name to. So the United Nations liked it: big deal, they like all sorts of junk. The BBC done right.
The Cymru Rouge keeps a close eye on BBC activities - the eye in question being that of Iago Anffawd (fab Sieffre Siomedig fab Gwil Goll), which has had a protrudent, stalk-like adaptability ever since he test-dived with the Welsh Socialist Navy's first experimental submarine coracle.
He regularly reports back to the Sedd Fawr of the Rouge on metropolitan outrages against Cambritude, such as Glenys Bloody Kinnock appearances and weathergirls standing in front of Aberystwyth on the map and mispronouncing it.
He has recently noted soul-searching among BBC staff over this Macedonian policy. Not the sort of soul-searching carried out by Mrs Boyo's father in his Vinnytsya oubliette, which involved attaching electric cables to deacons at prayer, but a bout of self-criticism about the wisdom of this choice.
This uncertainty was prompted by the quantity of complaints they've received from Greek opponents of the name change - patriots with a burning commitment to their ancestral land, even though circumstances seem to prevent them from actually living in it at the moment.
We web bloggers do not fear complaints about our work - we call them "comments", and post them on our sites. The Cymru Rouge urges the BBC to stand firm, like the Oak of Nannau, in the face of Attic barracking.
For our narrow nationalist readers and admirers of the work of Lily Allen, who may both be unaware of the Macedonian Question, the Cymru Rouge Grudge Assessment Unit has prepared the following background briefing:
The warrior and statesman Sir Winston Churchill always drew a distinction between "Greeks" - the Ancients who brought us philosophy, wine and recreational sport, and saved us from Persian savagery - and "Grecians" - the current inhabitants of that area who have brought us, their neighbours and indeed themselves little but grief, resinous wine and overcooked food in the last 200 years.
One cannot help but think that Aristotle and Demosthenes would have seen fit, as have we and Sir Winston, to draw a similar distinction between whoever might have lived in Macedonia several thousands of years ago, and the people who live there now. Demosthenes, certainly, would have left it up to our contemporaries to decide what they want to call themselves and their country.
Let us take it step by step.
There is a province of Greece called Macedonia, inhabited by Grecians who like to call themselves Greeks, Slavs who like to call themselves Macedonians, and Vlachs who like to call themselves Romanians.
There is also an independent state called Macedonia, inhabited by Slavs who like to call themselves Macedonians and Albanians who, alone in the region, are happy to be called just that. This makes the Albanians the only clear-headed people around. Food for thought.
On the subject of which, there is a fruit salad called Macedonia, made up of a similarly colourful if rather more welcome diversity of elements. Not a coincidence, we imagine.
Now, if the Grecians want to call their province Macedonia, or their country Greece for that matter, it's no one else's business. Our African cousins get by with two separate Congoes, and the same goes for the qat-fuelled decision to enjoy the benefits of two Yemens for a while, and no one really minds.
The same goes for Grecian Macedonia and the Republic of Macedonia. Take our word for it, no one really minds.
A phrase we recall from our hemp-clad, slogan-chanting childhood is "The Greeks have a word for it". In the case of the Epirote revanchistes, we suspect that word might be "hubris".
To employ a good Greek word, Adio.
Fear not, BBC, the Cymru Rouge is behind you!
Brawd Rhif Un - Huw Samphan
Brawd Rhif Dau - Paul Pot
Braws Rhif Tri - Moc Tudor