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Monday, May 19, 2014

RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH

The Serb Ambassador Dusanka Divjak-Tomic breaks down in tears in Skopje, the capital city of Macedonia, over her gratitude for Macedonia's offer of humanitarian assistance to flood victims in Serbia. source: vistina mk - link

RIVER DEEP, MOUNTAIN HIGH

The cultural difference between Macedonia & Serbia:
by Sasha Uzunov

HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE - when news of the devastating floods in Serbia and Bosnia hit, the Macedonian public and media quite rightly and instinctively offered to provide assistance to Serbia. They put aside their concerns about their powerful and capricious neighbour to the north. It's simply called human decency. People are people, regardless of the race, creed, colour.

You can see in the photo above the Serb Ambassador in Macedonia overcome with tears with gratitude over Macedonia's help.

In contrast, in April of this year at a formal commemoration, the Serb state media snubbed the 25,000 Macedonian Partizans with the 15th Macedonian Army Corps who fought at the Syrmian Front (Sremski Front) in Serbia in 1945 during World War Two's last major ferocious battle as the Germans made their last stand in the Balkans. There was no acknowledgement, no thank you for the sacrifice or for the humanitarian assistance.





15th Macedonian Army Corps on its way to the Syrmian Front (Sremski Front).

Furthermore, the Serbian state, though secular, uses the false cover of religion to destabilise Macedonia. The Serbian Orthodox Church, lacking any compassion or humanity, refuses to recognise the existence of the Macedonian Orthodox Church.

Diplomatic relationships are about building trust. In plain English it should be a two-way street.


The Macedonian people, on a whole, are a reasonable and tolerant people who have been forced to endure neighbouring states' contradictory behaviour: Greece's bullying over Macedonia's rightful name, Bulgarian refusal to recognise the existence of a separate Macedonian identity; and European Union and Western de-facto support for the ethnic Albanian insurgency in 2001 which nearly tore Macedonia apart.


For a small and peace-loving country it is being put through the ringer but can still uphold principles of decency and compassion.


We are surprised that EU pundit Sinisa Jakov Marusic of Balkan Insight website has gone "missing in action" over the story?

The article in the Serbian media leaves out the Macedonian contribution:


4/12/2014 3:40:00 PM

69 years since breakthrough of Syrmian Front

BELGRADE - Serbia marked on Saturday 69 years since the breakthrough of the Axis lines on the Syrmian Front after a 175-day campaign to liberate Yugoslavia from Nazi occupation in World War II.

The Syrmian Front campaign saw some of the most difficult and longest and most tragic WWII fighting. Over 250,000 soldiers fought in the trench battles from October 21, 1944 to April 12, 1945.

The Syrmian Front was an Axis defense line established along the western border of the Serbian region of Syrmia (Srem) after the final campaigns to liberate Belgrade and the country were started by the Yugoslav Partisans and their allies.

The Germans defended the front line heavily in desperate attempts to protect the withdrawal of its army's Group E from Greece through regions of Macedonia, Metohija, Kosovo, Sandzak and Bosnia.

On October 21, 1944, following the liberation of Belgrade, the 1st Proletarian Corps of the People's Liberation Army of Yugoslavia (NOVJ) went into an offensive to capture the Axis's trenches to protect the liberated capital and continue pushing the enemy further to the west.

A total of 12 Yugoslav divisions were backed by the Soviet Red Army and the Bulgarian People's Army. A Slovenian battalion formed in the liberated Belgrade and an Italian brigade also joined the 1st Proletarian Corps's offensive.

The Yugoslav units consisted mostly of under-aged young men drafted en masse in Serbia in the winter of 1944 and 1945.

On the Axis side were units of the Nazi German army and Independent State of Croatia.

The difficult and bloody battles, fought in heavy snow and fierce winds, claimed the lives of at least 13,500 NOVJ soldiers, mostly young men sent to the front from Serbia and Montenegro, but the exact number and full names of the soldiers have never been established or listed.

The losses and casualties for the Russian Red Army numbered at least 1,100 soldiers, the Bulgarian Army lost 630 men and the Italian brigade went back home without 163 of their men. The Axis side saw about 30,000 killed or wounded.

History has it written that that all the units taking part in the fighting on the Syrmian Front had an ally in the population of Syrmia as the homes and facilities of these people proved secure shelters for their men.

The breakthrough of enemy lines on the Syrmian Front marked the end of World War II on the territory of today's Republic of Serbia. The entire territory of the former Yugoslavia was liberated in an allied offensive in less than a month after that.

The German Army Group E capitulated to Yugoslav Partisans on April 12, 1945, and its commander, General Alexander von Loehr, the mastermind behind a massive air attack aimed at destroying Belgrade in early April 1941, was captured. He was tried for war crimes and sentenced to death in February 1947.

Most historians concur that the Syrmian Front proved to be of huge importance for the Allies and crucial for the Yugoslav Partisans, but they are not sure if it was really necessary for so many young Serbian men to leave their bones in the mud of the Syrmian plains.
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The official history - detailing the 15th Macedonian Army Corps participation at the Syrmian Front (Sremski Front) Bora Mitrovski: PETNAESTI (MAKEDONSKI) UDARNI KORPUS Vojnoizdava─Źki zavod, Beograd, 1983  link

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