Europe and Macedonia.
Macedonia is a beautiful nation of 2 millions. It fits in the southern and eastern fringes of Europe surrounded by Serbia, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Albania and Greece. These are the poorest nations in the European mainland.
Till 1991 Macedonia was part of Tito’s Yugoslavia. Today it is a successful polyglot melting pot of Slavs, Albanians, Turks, Romanis, Serbs and Bulgarians.
This is a land of mountains, lakes, valleys and rivers. it is the home of bears, wild boars, the Imperial Eagle and the European home of the Lynx.
It wants to cement its new democracy by joining the EU.
Economically it has steadily grown at around 5% per annum since independence. But unemployment, though greatly reduced is still around 20% and gdp per capita is $9000 – roughly on a par with that of Bulgaria. It needs everything the common markets of Europe can offer.
This is a also a land that is part of the European buffer between the Western way of life and the bleak terror of Putin’s Russia – so Russia is hell bent on destabilising the free referendum due to take place on September 30. Hacking, bunches of false Facebook sites, fake news, anything Russia can do it is doing to scorn Macedonia’s future link with the riches and freedoms of the West.
Here’s the thing. Macedonia wants to build on its new found freedom its way. It needs a strong Europe, and beyond Europe a supportive US. it needs NATO. Alone it faces a Russia willing to make trouble whever it can. so think of Macedonia on september 30.
Have a good day. James