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I just came across some Macedonian Alexander nuttiness in a Guardian travel feature about travelling by train from London to Greece:
We cross into Macedonia, a country that has been forced to call itself the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia by its neighbouring state, the Former Ottoman Backwater of Greece.

Skopje station is a brutalist concrete monster, but soon after we are into lovely scenery as the line plunges into the gorge of the river Vardar. At Veles the motorbiking guard talks darkly of massacres and pogroms. "The communists killed everyone who was against them after the second world war, and buried them here."

We pass acres of polytunnels where tomatoes grow. There are peaches, nectarines and apples. "Macedonia is an antique country," he says proudly. "Our language is 8,000 years old. If Alexander the Great were here, I could chat to him."

"What about?" I enquire innocently.

He laughs cynically. "The Kosovar problem."

by Gag Halfrunt on Sun Mar 29th, 2009 at 08:27:18 AM EST

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