Macedonia marks October 11, the day of the World War Two uprising against the occupying Axis forces.
On this day in 1941, groups of partisans attacked police stations and communication centers in Prilep and Kumanovo, in what was the first attack in the guerrilla fight aimed mainly against Bulgarian fascists, as the country was divided between Bulgarian and Italian occupation zones.
The partisans were inspired mainly by the Macedonian national liberation ideal and managed to secure significant free territories during the war, especially with the decline of the Axis powers. The movement included a strong Communist element which wrestled power at the end of the war.
In his remarks, president Stevo Pendarovski was careful not to mention who the partisans were fighting against due to the threat of EU veto by Bulgaria: “Macedonian partisans were part of the anti-fascist coalition and together with other just causes, chose the true side of history, in a all-encompassing struggle that surpassed ideologies”.
It’s quite remarkable for Pendarovski – he continues with lengthy speeches where he somehow always ends up saying absolutely nothing.