During his visit to the Middle East Section of the State Department, Lazar Kisselinchev sees for himself, that they regularly receive and follow the contents of "Macedonian Tribune", the MPO's printed organ. As reference book on the Macedonian problems, the American diplomats use the well known 1905 "Memoir of IMARO on Macedonia". He is handed a list of 14 titles of new books on Macedonia, to be provided for the needs of American diplomatic service. The order is, of course, fulfilled at once, as on the well informedness of the Middle East Section, depended important nuances of the policy on the Balkans. The Information Bureau considering these titles to be of biggest interest to the specialists on the Balkan problems, has them send out to other 1500 addresses throughout the United States, mainly to university libraries, newspapers' editions, politicians and others.
The support for the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in USA, given by the State Department, although indirectly, stimulates its structures for new activities. Following ten meetings between Roger Baldwin and Lazar Kisselintchev, a new plan is developed " to put up the Macedonian question in America"/20/ They make a list of authors, to be invited for the writing of articles on the situation of the Bulgarians in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia.It is decided the series to begin with a material prepared by Prof. D. Braillsford. This plan gives results in September 1929. Braillsford article is published even in the influential English newspaper -- "Manchester Guardian". The Macedono-Bulgarian Information Bureau in New York heliographs the text and sends it out to many influential editions in the USA. At the same time, the new resolutions of the Eighth Congress of the Macedonian Patriotic Organizations in North America are distributed to more than 3000 addresses in the United States. In response, by the end of 1928, eminent politicians, professors, journalists and public figures in USA and Europe send letters of thanks to the CC of MPO in Indianapolis.Thus, since the beginning of the 30-ies, the activity of the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby crosses the borders of the great north-American republic.For the first time ,it emerges as an influential center planning, coordinating and realizing important steps for keeping awake the interest of both the American and the world public opinion on the problems of the tragic fate of the Bulgarian minorities in Yugoslavia and Greece.What could not be done officially, on the problem of the Bulgarians in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia, by the American State, due to the global political strategies of its administration, was done by those representatives of the American scientific and public circles, who have clear understanding of the drama of the Macedonian Bulgarians, and therefore, fully consciously and voluntarily engage themselves in the initiatives of the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in the United Sates.
In the beginning of February 1930, in USA becomes public the appeal sent to the League of Nations by the former mayor of Scopije- Dimitar Shalev and his comrades from Veles- Dimitar Iliev and Grigor Anastasov.For the first time since the implementation of the 1919 Neuilly Peace Treaty, three representatives of the enslaved Bulgarian population of Macedonia, manage to escape the control of the Serbian State Security and present to the League of Nations the question of the prevention of the anti-Bulgarian crusade of the government in Belgrade. Copy of the statement of the three Bulgarians is sent to the leader of ICDPP in New York - Roger Baldwin.
The petition, presented at the League of Nations, confirms completely the constatations of Roger Baldwin of his visit to the Balkans in 1928. that is why he calls a meeting of the Council of ICDPP on January 3rd, 1930. At the meeting R. Baldwin informs his colleagues on the content of the important document and fully supports the demands of the three eminent Macedonian Bulgarians. ICDPP is solidary with its chairman's position.As expression of its respect to the struggle of the Bulgarians in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia against the policy of their denationalization. On January 5th, 1930, ICDPP elects, as member of its Executive Council, the head of the Macedono-Bulgarian Information Bureau in New York, Lazar Kisselintchev. His name is immediately included in the official ensign of the ICDPP, together with the names of already mentioned eminent American democrats and humanists. Lazar Kisselintchev is charged with the copying of Shalev's, Iliev and Anastasov's statement and its dispatch, on behalf of ICDPP to all interested in the Macedonian problems in USA. Once again more than 3000 addresses receive the, noisily discussed in the international press, statement, deposited at the Headquarters of the League of Nations in Geneva.
Meanwhile, the international information agencies announce the forthcoming in May 1930,
59th Session of the League of Nations in Switzerland. CC of MPO judges that, with the help of the loud resonance of the statement of the three escaped Bulgarians, it could, for the first time, present for discussion the problems of the Bulgarian minorities at this forum. For this reason, MPO prepares a separate statement to the League of Nations. Considering the wide moral support given to the distribution of the document, the Macedonian-Bulgarian emigration solidarises itself with the demands of the three notorious representatives of the enslaved Bulgarian population and insists on their fulfillment.
The new serious advancement of the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in the States in front of the League of Nations, provokes a desperate reaction of the Serbian diplomacy in America. With the financial support of the Serbian diplomatic mission in Washington, a recruitment of mercenary journalists is started. They are to improve the image of Belgrade's authorities in front of the American public opinion. These efforts, however, do not give the expected result. Meanwhile the Consul in Chicago - Kolumbatovitch heads the campaign for creation of a new emigrant organization named " Union - Vardar Banovina"./21/ This structure was supposed to attract the Macedono-Bulgarian emigration in North America, to weaken MPO and to destroy, in fact, the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in the USA.
For achieving these aims, Kolumbatovitch sends agents to the north-eastern towns of the States, where the biggest Macedono-Bulgarian emigrant colonies are found.With threats for prosecution of their relatives in Macedonia, people are pressed to enter the new organization. Its name "Vardar Banovina" is taken from the name given to Macedonia by the Serbian government, in its efforts of debulgarisation and assimilation of the Bulgarian population in the region. The Macedono-Bulgarian emigration, however, does not yield to the threats. After one year, the efforts of Kolumbatovitch fail completely. A union under the name "Vardar banovina" is never created. The Macedono-Bulgarian emigration in this country decisively rejects all ideas of collaboration with the Greek and Serbian administrations and does not wish to change the name of its country.
Expecting that the 59-th session of the League of Nations, can not deny a discussion on the problem of the Bulgarians in Yugoslavia and Greece, the sympathizing factors in USA, carry out important initiatives for possibilities of pressure being put in Geneva, if a debate on the minorities rights of the Bulgarians in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia commences. In May 1930, on instructions of CC of MPO, Lazar Kisselintchev arrives in Washington. He visits the Association for American Foreign Policy/AAFP/. MPO has preliminary information that there exists an" undoubted disapprovement of King Alexander'regime ". This Agency is known for its opinion that "the Macedonian question is not solved" and that it is "a threat to peace on the Balkans."
In AAFP Lazar Kisselintchev has talks with the Chairman of the Association - James Macdonalds, the general scientific secretary -Buell, the Head of the Balkan Section of AAFP - Elisabeth Mac Cullum.All these people agree with Kisselintchev's conclusions that, the minorities' rights of the Bulgarians in Yugoslavia and Greece are not respected. Especially detailed are the comments of Mrs. MacCullum. Her father had been for long years diplomatic representative of his country in Turkey. She, herself, was born in Constantinople and knew perfectly well the history and tragic out come of the Macedonian problem.
In her analysis ,however, she underlined an important specificity of the Macedonian question, that had to be taken in consideration, when planning international defence actions: beside the legal organizations, working for the defence of the rights of the Bulgarian minorities in Yugoslavia and Greece, this struggle is supported by a powerful revolutionary organization, as the IMRO, lead by Ivan Michailov. No other European minority had such a powerful and noisy "revolutionary defender". The activities of IMRO checked the outrages of the Serbian and Greek authorities in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia. When, however, the question was presented to some of the international organization, such as the League of Nations, this, exactly, created the problems.:It makes it very easy for the representatives of Belgrade and Athens, to counteract all pressure for discussion of the Bulgarian minority rights, with the arguments that, the revolutionary actions of IMRO, provoke the authorities to implementation of force. There would have been no problems for the Bulgarian minorities in Yugoslavia and Greece had IMRO not existed!? In this way,
Mrs. MacCullum synthesizes the biggest difficulty encountered by the American right-defending organizations in every attempt to put up for discussion the improvement of the situation of the Bulgarian minorities in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia./21/ Nevertheless, AAFP promises cooperation, if the Macedonian question enters the agenda of the 59th Session of the League of Nations. Lazar Kisselintchev is requested for a full list of eminent American scientists and intellectuals, experts on Balkan history, that could be used by AAFP as lecturers. The Head of the Macedonian Information Bureau in New York recommends the professors Philip Marshall, John Bridge, Herbert Adam Gibbens, David Star Jordan and John Backels. As former experts in the 1919 Paris Peace Conference, they know very well the Macedonian problem and are trusted completely by the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in USA./22/
During his May visit to Washington, Kisselintchev has meetings in the American Society for the League of Nations, the Council on International Relations, the Wilson and Carnegie Foundations as well as in the centrals of the big and influential religious organizations. There, he meets many influential Americans as the former Wilson's ministers N.Backer and G. Weekersham, the widely known journalists Arthur Brisbane of " New York Times' and Henry Kitridge of "New York Herald Tribune". All of them promise to publish materials in support of the cause, if the League of Nations give way to debates on practical measure for the improvement of the conditions of the Bulgarian minorities in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia./23/
On July 7th, however, from Geneva,the news arrives, that the Assembly of the League of Nation has declined the request of the three Macedonian refugees on the discussion of the minorities rights in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia. Once again, the victors in the First World War and their Balkan partners succeed in their dictate on the international organization. They do not permit any discussions on the status of the Bulgarian minorities in Yugoslavia and Greece, as this would mean reevaluation of their policy of the world structure of 1919.
The League of Nations's position on the minorities' rights,
in the beginning of the 30-ies, has tremendous resonance in the whole civilized
world. For everybody, clearly, the League of Nations, can not in fact,
fulfill its role of an unbiased arbiter in the international relations.
It becomes definitely an instrument of support of the political status
quo, ordered by the countries victors in the First World War.Therefore,
in this period, its influence and authority begins quickly to decrease.
In the situation of revisionist attitudes in Europe, the League of Nations
definitely loses its positions of a real factor in the international relations.
With this disappear all hopes for peaceful solution of the status of the
Bulgarian minorities in Yugoslavia and Greece. The number and the force
of the arguments for further development and activity of the Macedono-Bulgarian
lobby in the United States, also diminish seriously. What could be the
point of it, if the White House follows a policy of isolationism and the
League of nation even refuses to put up the question of the minority rights
of the Bulgarians in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia?.
Extremely unfavorable effect on some of the activities of the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in USA, in the period 1930-1934, has the Great Depression in the world. Due to bankruptcies, the CC of MPO loses substantial amounts of money. The Macedono-Bulgarian lobby, due to unemployment, is in difficult financial situation. Under these circumstances, for a period of five years, MPO is unable to organize frequent mobilizing campaigns of its followers, due to the financial difficulties./26/
In addition to all this, the government of Bulgaria, after the military coup d'etat, on May 19th 1934, bans all legal organizations of the Macedono-Bulgarian emigration in Sofia.The whole public and political life is rearranged on autocratic basis, decreasing the possibilities for a free political activity on the Balkans to the minimum.This new control in Bulgaria, in fact, strangles the main center of the fight for the defence of the Bulgarian minorities in Vardar and Aegean Macedonia- this of free Bulgaria. Thus, the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby loses its main and most credible ally in Europe. All this, as well as the isolationism course of the USA, even under Roosevelt's administration, explain the reasons for the gradual complication of the working conditions and activity of the American Macedono-Bulgarian lobby. Its activity, however, is paralyzed only in the end of the 30ies with the outbreak of the Second World War.
Inspite of all these circumstances, however, not everything is lost during the period examined. The experts on Macedonia are in the United States, Although infrequently, they continue to write honest articles on the gravest problems of the Balkans - Macedonia's problems. Their most impressive actions, in this wholly changed situation, is the presence at the annual congresses of the Macedono-Bulgarian emigration in North America. There, the old friends of the Macedonian Bulgarians, give moving speeches in defence of their causes in the Vardar and Aegean part of the region. Therefore, when examining the interest toward Macedonia in the USA till the mid 40-ies, it is worthwhile to take a closer look at this formidable manner of support, which is a valuable page in the history of the Macedono-Bulgarian lobby in the United States in the period between the two wars.
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