The small city of Kumanovo, Macedonia was the site of a running battle between police and Albanian nationalists last weekend.
The US media can’t find a recognizable enemy so no one cares. They should. It tells us a lot about what happens when Empires fall. This video attempts to address that gap…
Hello All. Did you know that 22 people died in a gun battle in Europe last weekend? They weren’t killed by Russians or fundamentalist Muslims so you probably haven’t heard about it. Albanian separatists in Macedonia, one of Europe’s smallest countries, lost a battle with government forces, devastating the small city of Kumanovo in the process. This has gotten me thinking about the fall of empires, and the enduring effects that those falls can have.
It takes a particularly vicious stew of ideology to convince a man to pick up a gun and kill. These gunmen were probably motivated by more recent grievances, but to find the root causes you need to go back to an empire that died almost a century a go. From the 14th century to the beginning of the 20th, this corner of Europe was owned by the Ottoman Empire, as was much of the Modern Middle East. This all ended by 1918. Albanians were more favored under the Ottomans than other nationalities, and they’ve been suffering for it for a century. US support for Albanians in Kosovo has convinced a few idiots that now is the time to fight for more land in places like Macedonia. This is one minor after-shock of the end of the Ottoman Empire. There are many others including Israel-Palestine, the savage break-up of Yugoslavia in the 1990s and the absurd power of Saudi Arabia. Worst of all, World War I killed millions, and set the stage for the 20th century’s worst horrors. This is what happens when Empires fall.
Empires maintain control through military force, and by using that force to play ethnic groups off of eachother. When empires fall, as they always do, the situations their power created become unbalanced and disastrous.The British Empire didn’t last as long, but their reach was greater than that of the Ottomans. That empire’s end brought the horrors of World War II, and the still looming threat of Nuclear war between India and Pakistan, among many many other problems. The British Empire spent its last 50 years in a desperate race against rivals like Russia and Germany, wrecking the world in the process
We have no rivals. Unfortunately Washington, DC, in spite of history, reason, and the wishes of the American public, seems to be following directly in the British empire’s footsteps. We’re building military bases all over the world, and backing tiny countries against giants. If you ask me, we’ve got another solid half century or so on top. We should be using that time wisely and with restraint. If we create a system everyone can agree on then we’ll never lose as badly the British and the Ottomans did. But if we continue to run around the world in a panic, as we have since 9/11, a brutal fall is guaranteed.
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