Kosovo

Topic started from Syria because some senior politicians from the West compared Syria with Kosovo. One of them is President of US Mr. Barrack Obama.

And these days we can see links with Syria, islamists like Al Qaeda act in Kosovo.
http://www.focus-fen.net/?id=n318687
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4452575,00.html

I prefer economic topics. Serbia has for decades invested heavily in Kosovo in order to equalize the standard of Kosovo with the other parts of Serbia. The vast property is now under question and this topic has not yet begun to be solved.

But we cannot avoid political topics. These days Turkish Prime minister showed us that Turkey is again in the heart of Balkans, he said: "Kosovo is Turkey". Here we see the activities of Al Qaeda. What is tomorrow?
 
According to me, the integration of all mentioned countries like Serbia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia and even Albania into the European Union will decrease the tension between them. Economical integrity and dependence to each other will increase the chance of long term peace.
 
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You mean after all that that Muslims did in Kosovo for the last couple of centuries?
Again religion.
I want to ask you a question.
If the Turks never entered in the Balkans, and the Albanians were Orthodox majority what would you say?
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If one day you find out that the great schism was made by the Albanians what would you do? You kill self? Of course not.
 
According to me, the integration of all mentioned countries like Serbia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Kosovo, Macedonia and even Albania into the European Union will decrease the tension between them. Economical integrity and dependence to each other will increase the chance of long term peace.
UE.....enter in UE or not enter in UE?
The EU is happy when you haven't problems (for problems i means crysis), if you are in crisis gives you a kick.
If I had my way, countries such as Romania, Bulgaria and Poland should stay out of the EU since they are still fragile economies and countries of the "second world".
If we let countries just because they have reduced crime (slightly) debt public then we enter Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and the Philippines........
 
Again religion.
I want to ask you a question.
If the Turks never entered in the Balkans, and the Albanians were Orthodox majority what would you say?
-------------------------------------------------
If one day you find out that the great schism was made by the Albanians what would you do? You kill self? Of course not.

It's always about religion. Religion is what starts wars here.

1. Albanians probably were Orthodox long time ago. What would I say? Nothing... They'd probably be a peaceful nation, instead of being Muslims in Europe. There would not be much to talk about.
2. What does it have to do with anything, who started Great Schism? It was not started by people, but by power thirsty clericals.
 
It's always about religion. Religion is what starts wars here.

1. Albanians probably were Orthodox long time ago. What would I say? Nothing... They'd probably be a peaceful nation, instead of being Muslims in Europe. There would not be much to talk about.
2. What does it have to do with anything, who started Great Schism? It was not started by people, but by power thirsty clericals.
Peaceful nation? Yea? Like Russia,Ukraine,Serbia or other?
Tell me about your peaceful country orthodox
If the orthodox countries are so "peaceful" then why the First World War did not start from Albanian or Bosnjak? Why kill the prince Austric was not a Bosnjak, but a Serb? Give me a list of countries with a majority Orthodox worthy of being called "peaceful"? Mhhh ..... if you want to do a list of countries "Catholics" peaceful.
Albania is not a first world country (like many other countries) and not a peaceful country because for many years had a strong communism.
 
For me one thing is always been fascinating. Muslim Turks ruled many nations in the Balkans and beyond. Some member of these nations would convert to Islam. You have and today muslim in Serbia who speaks Serbian, muslim in Croatia who speaks Croatian, muslim in Bulgaria who speaks Bulgarian, muslim in Greece who speaks Greek etc. People converted to islam in Ottoman Empire, of course Sharia low is much better for Muslims than for non-Muslims.

But Serbs, Greeks, Croats, Bulgarians, Romanians, Hungarians etc. are mostly have remained committed to Christianity. Only, the vast majority of Albanians converted to Islam. There must be a reason for converting of Albanians into Islam.
 
If the orthodox countries are so "peaceful" then why the First World War did not start from Albanian or Bosnjak?

Because they are surrounded by non peaceful nations.
 
But Serbs, Greeks, Croats, Bulgarians, Romanians, Hungarians etc. are mostly have remained committed to Christianity. Only, the vast majority of Albanians converted to Islam. There must be a reason for converting of Albanians into Islam.
Most Christian Orthodox Albanians have been assimilated by Greece, look up Suliots and Arvanites. So the muslim Albanians are the ones that the neighbors could not assimilate, that's why the ratio looks the way it looks today. Plus Turks were much more cruel to Christian Albanians than to other nations (that's why Albanians have the most revolts against Ottomans), it was their divide and conquer policy to get them to convert, in order to create polarization in the Balkans.
 
If there were so many Albanians to start with, then you'd have Albanians assimilating neighbouring nations. The fact that they all speak same language today, doesn't mean they were one ethnicity before arrival of Turks.
 
If there were so many Albanians to start with, then you'd have Albanians assimilating neighbouring nations.
Albanian was the only language in the Balkans that was banned in the Ottoman empire. If you were caught teaching Albanian at a school or public place, the punishment was death. On the other hand, schools teaching Greek were allowed in Albania, which is very suspicious. Obviously none is in the position to assimilate anyone if they cannot even teach their language. The Ottomans were not that friendly to Albanians, if you really look at the details.
 
Why would Turks be more friendly to Bulgarian, Greek, Aromanian or other Balkan languages than towards Albanian?
 
Why would Turks be more friendly to Bulgarian, Greek, Aromanian or other Balkan languages than towards Albanian?

I can't really speak for Turks, but some reasons might be:
1. Albanians were known for being more hard-headed with a strong national identity, with Skanderbeg beating the Ottoman empire head-on in the battlefield as opposed to negotiating, which was the most logical thing based on the size and resources of the Ottomans. So where do you attack someone's national identity? Try to ban their language...Try to make them Greek etc.

2. You can try to make Bulgarian dissapear but that would be a pointless task, because then you have to make Serbian dissapear, then Croatian, then Russian...etc.

3. You can try to make Greek disappear but Greek is in written form everywhere in the world, so again a pointless task. Plus it was the official language of the Byzantine Orthodox Church, which after the fall of Kostandinopole became a tool of the Ottomans to keep the population submissive. Plus if there is no Greek, what other language are you going to use to make Albanian disappear ?!
 
1. Disagree. Albanians were never known for a strong national identity. There are numerous opposite writings from different authors. Both Balkan and European travelers and writers confirming it. National awakening of Albanians started some 100-150 years ago. Even Skenderbeg is disputable...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myth_of_Skanderbeg

"From the 15th to the 19th century Skanderbeg's fame survived mainly in Christian Europe and was based on a perception of Skanderbeg's Albania serving as Antemurale Christianitatis (a barrier state) against "invading Turks". In Albania, largely Islamicized during this period, Skanderbeg's fame faded and was rediscovered at the end of 19th century, when the figure of Skanderbeg was brought to the level of national myth."

2. It would totally not be pointless. If they managed to do that they may have been in Balkans right now, like they are in today's Turkey, or like Hungarians are in Pannonian basin.


3. They'd use Turkish. Like they did in Anatolia.
 
...

Ike, if you are into fiction you should read Dan Brown or Stephen King, I personally prefer Brown as he sort of tells his stories like they're real.

I'm Albanian, and I'm guessing that you are Yugoslavian from the flag on the profile. No matter how hard we try to be objective we're always going to disagree about our origins because we both want to win. We don't want to get the truth, but WIN. Perhaps it would be better to cool it down and mind our own business for a while until both our countries are doing better economically and with time we will learn more facts as they unveil, because I am a strong believer that no man can hide the truth. I base this belief on the fact that if 'man' can study dinosaurs' fossils millions of years before our species came to existence, then we will, in time, certainly be able to get to the truth about this matter.

I was born in the early eighties in a northern town of Lezha, which is predominantly catholic (roman). My origin along with most of the inhabitants of Lezhe is from north east, an area called MIRDITA (which by the way means good day/or/welcome) and they are all catholic also. I have little recollection of the dictatorship (Enver Hoxha et al 1945 - 1991) but my mum and dad tell me that they have always tried to celebrate christian holidays (like Shenkolle (St. Nicolas) Krishtlindjet (Christmas/Birth of Christ) Pashket (Easter) although it wasn't allowed back then. I have close friends whom are muslyms in our region that originate from an area called DIBER (a battlefield in ottoman rule era) which they say that their forefathers were converted into islamism. I guess what I'm trying to say is that from my point of view we are Albanians just like you are Yugoslavians and we both have our own stories to tell, which is why we need to keep calm and tell it as it is without any nationalistic nuance.

Having been in migration since the age of 15 (to Greece, Italy, France & UK) I haven't had a chance to really know my own country's history, which is why over the past few years, which is why I have started to study history in more detail. And I have become increasingly intrigued by the conflict between Albanians - vs - Yugoslavia & Albanians -vs- Greeks. I have gone through countless material, in an effort to remain objective, unable of course to come to a conclusion. Although contradictory, I have found some similarities in all our stories.

Sometimes it almost seems as if something, or someone is deliberately misleading us all in order to gain something from it, but then I lough at myself as I cannot pinpoint what they would stand to gain and why.
 
Ike, if you are into fiction you should read Dan Brown or Stephen King, I personally prefer Brown as he sort of tells his stories like they're real.

I'm Albanian, and I'm guessing that you are Yugoslavian from the flag on the profile. No matter how hard we try to be objective we're always going to disagree about our origins because we both want to win. We don't want to get the truth, but WIN. Perhaps it would be better to cool it down and mind our own business for a while until both our countries are doing better economically and with time we will learn more facts as they unveil, because I am a strong believer that no man can hide the truth. I base this belief on the fact that if 'man' can study dinosaurs' fossils millions of years before our species came to existence, then we will, in time, certainly be able to get to the truth about this matter.

I was born in the early eighties in a northern town of Lezha, which is predominantly catholic (roman). My origin along with most of the inhabitants of Lezhe is from north east, an area called MIRDITA (which by the way means good day/or/welcome) and they are all catholic also. I have little recollection of the dictatorship (Enver Hoxha et al 1945 - 1991) but my mum and dad tell me that they have always tried to celebrate christian holidays (like Shenkolle (St. Nicolas) Krishtlindjet (Christmas/Birth of Christ) Pashket (Easter) although it wasn't allowed back then. I have close friends whom are muslyms in our region that originate from an area called DIBER (a battlefield in ottoman rule era) which they say that their forefathers were converted into islamism. I guess what I'm trying to say is that from my point of view we are Albanians just like you are Yugoslavians and we both have our own stories to tell, which is why we need to keep calm and tell it as it is without any nationalistic nuance.

Having been in migration since the age of 15 (to Greece, Italy, France & UK) I haven't had a chance to really know my own country's history, which is why over the past few years, which is why I have started to study history in more detail. And I have become increasingly intrigued by the conflict between Albanians - vs - Yugoslavia & Albanians -vs- Greeks. I have gone through countless material, in an effort to remain objective, unable of course to come to a conclusion. Although contradictory, I have found some similarities in all our stories.

Sometimes it almost seems as if something, or someone is deliberately misleading us all in order to gain something from it, but then I lough at myself as I cannot pinpoint what they would stand to gain and why.
Well said Ino, welcome to Eupedia.

Sometimes it almost seems as if something, or someone is deliberately misleading us all in order to gain something from it, but then I lough at myself as I cannot pinpoint what they would stand to gain and why.
For the same reason we do other things in life, to feel good, in this case feel proud, even superior or win (as you mentioned), they all feel good to most people. What is worse, whatever feels good is potentially addictive.
 
Ike, if you are into fiction you should read Dan Brown or Stephen King, I personally prefer Brown as he sort of tells his stories like they're real.

I'm just piling onto Kamani's theories. He's the one who started proposing fiction, and I'm trying to make a conversation in that direction. It's all "what would have happened if...." You don't have to participate in that part of talk.

p.s. I agree that we are not moving into any sensible direction, and that it's a bit futile.

No matter how hard we try to be objective we're always going to disagree about our origins because we both want to win. We don't want to get the truth, but WIN.

All I see is foreign irredentists and terrorist for the last 30 years tearing apart pieces of Yugoslavia (which formally still exists). They all have the same argument - they have not enough freedom to express their national feelings. So there we have it, national feelings all around Balkan. And it ended bad.

Anyways your attitude is nice, and it's a shame Albanians didn't think like that from 1980-ies, but started making chaos in the province as soon as Tito died. We all know it couldn't have happened before, because Tito was ruthless to the nationalists from all sides, whether Albanian, Serbian, Montenegrin, Croatian....
 
Most Christian Orthodox Albanians have been assimilated by Greece, look up Suliots and Arvanites. So the muslim Albanians are the ones that the neighbors could not assimilate, that's why the ratio looks the way it looks today. Plus Turks were much more cruel to Christian Albanians than to other nations (that's why Albanians have the most revolts against Ottomans), it was their divide and conquer policy to get them to convert, in order to create polarization in the Balkans.

The facts remains. Albanians are the only nations in Europe and beyond who are after paganism and to Christianity (Catholicism and Orthodoxy) became Muslims. The Catholic Church does not remember even to Africa and Asia that one nation converted from Catholicism to Islam and interestingly, very quickly. I read the various authors who have written about this phenomenon, however, they only note of the state (converting to Islam) but they don't write about reasons why one Christian nation renounced (and so quickly ) the faith of their fathers and grandfathers in favor of Islam.

The key findings, however, are reasons. There must be something deep within the Albanian beings (culture, values, assumptions, beliefs, genetics, origins, customs etc.) which ruled that the Albanians turned to religion Ottoman conquerors. What is interesting young Albanians converted to Islam massively in almost all areas irrespective of region and tribe. It happened that in same house living fathers/grandfathers Christians and sons and their children Muslims. The Catholic Church could not even imagine that in a short time losing the entire dioceses.
 
The facts remains. Albanians are the only nations in Europe and beyond who are after paganism and to Christianity (Catholicism and Orthodoxy) became Muslims. The Catholic Church does not remember even to Africa and Asia that one nation converted from Catholicism to Islam and interestingly, very quickly. I read the various authors who have written about this phenomenon, however, they only note of the state (converting to Islam) but they don't write about reasons why one Christian nation renounced (and so quickly ) the faith of their fathers and grandfathers in favor of Islam.

The key findings, however, are reasons. There must be something deep within the Albanian beings (culture, values, assumptions, beliefs, genetics, origins, customs etc.) which ruled that the Albanians turned to religion Ottoman conquerors. What is interesting young Albanians converted to Islam massively in almost all areas irrespective of region and tribe. It happened that in same house living fathers/grandfathers Christians and sons and their children Muslims. The Catholic Church could not even imagine that in a short time losing the entire dioceses.

For the part in your comment I bolded read answer 3)

1) Defensive reasons. The first one and arguably the largest was the ravagin of the country after Skandebeg's death because "It was the sultan’s policy to empty the land of its native inhabitants, should they put up resistance.".
Fior Jomina said:
28 December 1470]In conclusion, I can say that in the period in question, this country was turned into a wasteland. It has remained as such up to the present day. Gone are not only the settlements, but also the people, with the exception of those few villages that have been rebuilt. It would thus be necessary for prisoners who have been convicted or banned to be pardoned and sent to this country [to repopulate it].
http://www.albanianhistory.net/texts15/AH1470.html
If you understand the results of depopulation, especially at this time period, it's neccessary to do something.

2) Assimilation: Whenever Albanians are defined as "Muslim" and any Albanian of a different religion it's not Albanian (wrong definition) not "people who speak Albanan langauge" (better definition). Arvanitas, Suliots, Cham Albanians are largely Orthodox populations but only the Muslims (minority) was counted as Albanian by non-Albanians. A large number of Montenegrin Albanians have been assimilated as well this way.

3) Other Balkan countries dealt differently with Islam. This http://www.reddit.com/r/AskHistoria...id_albania_and_bosnia_become_majority_muslim/ guy explains it well so I'm just copy pasting it:

This is a tricky question, and one might ask the obverse - why is it that Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, and Greece have generally low Muslim populations as opposed to other Balkan countries that were under the Ottoman Empire (Montenegro, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo)?With Romania, it is most probably linked to the fact that the Danubian Principalities that would later form today's Romanian state (mostly the Old Kingdom - Wallachia and Moldavia) were never really directly incorporated into the Ottoman Empire, but were rather vassal states. They were run by mostly Greek-speaking merchant elites who held the titles of hospodars or something akin to princes. These were Stambolite Greeks also known as the Phanariotes, and were part of the upper class of Ottoman society. To this day, many Romanians' last names betray this period of Greek cultural hegemony in which Bucharest was a center of Hellenic learning.
With Greece, Serbia and Bulgaria, this is a trickier story. All these countries, while not having majority Muslim populations, did have sizeable Muslim towns. By the time nationalism emerged in the early nineteenth century as an ideology that supported the foundation of these nation states, the majority of the urban population in all three countries was Muslim. What happened to them?
Well, many of them were expelled, from Serbia largely in 1862 after riots in Belgrade and the bombardment of the city by the pasha, but already from 1830 onwards with the proclamation of Serbian autonomy. There are many reasons why Muslims were considered incompatible with modern nation states. Some of these had to do with ideas about the backwardness of Islam and the tenacity of Christianity, supported by Orientalist perceptions of the Great Powers. Muslims were not under the authority of the Serbian autonomous Principality, also because the Porte was cautious in releasing authority to the emergent Serbian nation state. Autonomy at the time meant originally judicial authority over Christians, and then later Jews and Gypsies. The Muslim population also preferred to maintain this status of dual authority due to notions of loyalty to the Sultan as well as financial benefits it would bring. Having a sizeable Muslim population was considered backwards, and incompatible with the modernizing project that would allow Serbs to join the European family of nations. This project was largely spearheaded by Habsburg-educated Serb cultural elites who worked towards political unity with other South Slavic nations. In this sense, the expulsion of Muslims took place through a gradual series of negotiations and contracts between Belgrade and Istanbul, particularly since 1867 when the idea of Muslims as an "occupying force" was cemented, particularly through the involvement and support of the Great Powers. The Muslim population of Belgrade, Smederevo, Soko, Fethislam (Kladovo) and Šabac was expelled and their property bought by the Serbian state, usually for pennies on the dollar.
After the Berlin Congress in 1878, Serbia was granted the Niš region, largely as appeasement for not having received Bosnia which went to Austria-Hungary. There was a sizeable Muslim population there as well, but it was largely expelled this time quite violently by the military-state apparatus which occupied the area. Many of them had fled previously because of the Russo-Turkish War, in which atrocities at both sides led to huge population movements in Bulgaria and the Niš region. The number of Muslims that were expelled or voluntarily fled the war is projected by some authors to be around 250 000 people, but it is tricky to determine and is a politically contested issue even today. Muslims did become citizens of the autonomous Bulgaria after 1878, and its independence in 1908, but many chose to relocate to Macedonia and Istanbul. There is still a Muslim population in Bulgaria (some 750,000 Turks and Pomaks mostly, so about one tenth of the population), and there have been period attempts to "Bulgarianize" the population, most famous being the quite recent campaigns during Todor Zhivkov in the 1980s, which led to further emigration, mostly to Istanbul.
The areas which were incorporated into Serbia after the Balkan Wars of 1912, and the establishment of similar "civil" ideas of citizenship, namely Kosovo and the Sandžak region (which is still part of Serbia today) maintained a majority Muslim population. There were some attempts at resettlement into Turkey in the 1920s that may have numbered upwards into the 200,000 people number, but most of the emigration, particularly from Sandžak, has been economic.
In Greece, the majority of the Muslim population was also expelled during the wars of national expansion, but a sizeable Muslim population remained until the Population Exchange of 1923. As I mentioned, the idea that nation and religion were one was generally a component of early Balkan nationalism, and the Greek, Serbian and Bulgarian states all wound up to be based on this idea. After the First World War (which stretched really from 1912 to 1922 for Greece and Turkey), some 2 million people were moved - about 1.5 million mostly Turkish-speaking Greek Orthodox peoples of Anatolia were sent to Greece and some half-million mostly Greek-speaking Muslim peoples of Greece were sent to Turkey. The ethnic homogenization of these states was considered to be stabilizing and good for the further development of the nations, but had profound detrimental cultural and economic effects that are felt to this day in both areas.
Later Balkan nationalisms, namely Albanian and Bosniak nationalism (but also the Macedonian Liberation struggle) were all based around the concept of language or region, rather than religion, and were highly religiously inclusive. In Bosnia, this clashed with pre-existing Serb and Croat national movements, and although the Austro-Hungarians particularly supported an inclusive version of bošnjaštvo (Bosnianness), this was largely not accepted by the intellectual elites of Orthodox and Catholic cultural movements who preferred to see themselves linked to the neighboring "modernized" nations of Serbia and Croatia. In Albania, the movement was largely successful at bridging the religious gap, but this was a tenuous process (Albania was also only created in 1912), and even in the early 1900s, many Albanians saw themselves as loyal to Istanbul rather than the Albanian national cause - there was a significant Albanian contingent in the Young Turks until quite late.
TL;DR: There used to be Muslims in all Balkan states, although in varying proportions. Early Balkan national movements that were ethnically and religiously homogenous gained recognition first from the Great Powers, starting with Greece and ending with Bulgaria. Albanian and Bosnian nationalisms emerged quite late and were able to incorporate varied religious groups into their respective concepts of state administration.
I can provide sources for all this if anyone's interested further, I just didn't really have the time now and dinner is on the stove. It is important to note that Bosnia has a sizeable Muslim population, but is not a majority-Muslim state. The same goes for Macedonia. Albania has a large Orthodox Christian population, and Kosovo used to have one as well until relatively recently.

Read all his answers in the thread actually. It's worth it. BTW he's a Serbian scholar specialized in the Balkans, so I don't think he's biased towards Albanians.

EDIT: I have to answer this one too
It's always about religion. Religion is what starts wars here.

1. Albanians probably were Orthodox long time ago. What would I say? Nothing... They'd probably be a peaceful nation, instead of being Muslims in Europe. There would not be much to talk about.

I'm kinda confused what are you trying to imply here:
a) Albanians would be left in peace by other nations
b) Albanians start religious wars

Inside Albania there's a lot of harmony among religions, which is not something that occurs overnight; it's largely part of Albanian culture, so if you're implying the second one you'd be wrong. Lots have been written about Albania's religious tolerance, here's the first scholarly paper on google:
http://www.academicus.edu.al/nr7/Academicus-MMXIII-7-013-018.pdf

https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3393/4633331134_a2e3ec7341_o.jpg

(pic above the 4 religious heads of Albania)

But if you're implying the first one I agree. If this was a playground, Albania would be the most bullied kid.
 
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For me one thing is always been fascinating. Muslim Turks ruled many nations in the Balkans and beyond. Some member of these nations would convert to Islam. You have and today muslim in Serbia who speaks Serbian, muslim in Croatia who speaks Croatian, muslim in Bulgaria who speaks Bulgarian, muslim in Greece who speaks Greek etc. People converted to islam in Ottoman Empire, of course Sharia low is much better for Muslims than for non-Muslims.

But Serbs, Greeks, Croats, Bulgarians, Romanians, Hungarians etc. are mostly have remained committed to Christianity. Only, the vast majority of Albanians converted to Islam. There must be a reason for converting of Albanians into Islam.
Probably because they were predominantly Catholic, as Catholics are loyal to the Pope.
There are many differences between Orthodox and Catholics, and the most important is loyalty to the Vatican.
The Albanians being a Catholic majority, and in the Ottoman Empire fees for Catholics was much higher will have a much greater impact.
However, according to the org Albania is predominantly Catholic.
 

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