Tuesday, 05 April 2011 09:07

Manifest issued at the first session of the Anti-fascist Council of National Liberation of Macedonia to the people of Macedonia

Written by  Home of Macedonian Culture


  • PERIOD / EPOCH: First half of the twentieth century
  • ORIGINAL TITLE: Manifest issued at the first session of the Anti-fascist Council of National Liberation of Macedonia to the people of Macedonia
  • CATEGORY: Manifestos

  • DATE: August 2nd, 1944
  • AUTHOR(S):
    Metodi Andonov-Cento; Panko Brašnarov; Emanuel Cuckov; Ljubco Arsov; Vladimir Polezinovski; Venko Markovski; Cvetko Uzunovski; Blagoje Fotev; Mihail Apostolski; Strahil Gigov; Petre Piruze; Kiril Petrušev; Jovan Jorgov; Epaminonda Pop-Andonov; Genadie Leškov; Kemal Agoli; Lazar Sokolov; Vera Aceva; Kember Hasan; Aco Petrovski;, Mladen Georgiev Celopecki; Liljana Calovska
    Metodi Andonov-Cento; Panko Brašnarov; Emanuel Cuckov; Ljubco Arsov; Vladimir Polezinovski; Venko Markovski; Cvetko Uzunovski; Blagoje Fotev; Mihail Apostolski; Strahil Gigov; Petre Piruze; Kiril Petrušev; Jovan Jorgov; Epaminonda Pop-Andonov; Genadie Leškov; Kemal Agoli; Lazar Sokolov; Vera Aceva; Kember Hasan; Aco Petrovski;, Mladen Georgiev Celopecki; Liljana Calovska

People of Macedonia,

At a time of the greatest global tremors, at a time of the bloodiest struggle of the Macedonian people, your First National Council, springing from the blood and lives of your finest sons, has taken a stand on your behalf to tell the entire world, both friends and foes, allies and occupiers, near and far, that the people of Macedonia are determined to live a free life and that no force in the world will be able to stand in their way to full national emancipation.

At a moment characterized by the fire of our brigades directed at the destruction of the bloody occupier from Kumanovo and Strumica to Tikveš and Debar, when our struggle has reached its zenith and when its successful outcome has become obvious to everyone, the First Macedonian National Council has presented a proclamation of full national emancipation of our people.

People of Macedonia,

These historic words addressed to you by the first National Council have not come to you accidentally or as a gift. They are the result of the streams of blood and piles of bones scattered throughout Macedonia. In the course of five centuries of serfdom various invaders have plundered your land and oppressed your people. The only instrument they could not take away from you was combat. It remained the most powerful tool in your hands and has helped you to survive as a nation.

During the Ilinden Uprising and Kruševo Republic you became aware how mighty this tool was. The Ilinden Uprising demonstrated to the whole world your determination not to remain a slave to any master and to live as a free nation. The Ilinden epic also indicated to you how powerful is your fist when it is raised in the call for freedom. Such a force has frightened both known and hidden enemies, the imperialists in the neighbouring Balkan states. Frightened by your fighting preparadness, with open propaganda they attempted to divide you so as to facilitate oppression. And owing to traitors and renegades, the fateful year of 1912 [1] dawned on you divided, bloodied and disorganized, and your land was divided between the imperialist invaders. This shameful partition of Macedonia was confirmed in 1919 [2] and you were still not rid of of the yoke of oppresson.

People of Macedonia,

Subjected to unheard-of economic exploitation, rejected as a nation, your political rights usurped, your education backward, 23 years under Greater-Serbian oppression forced you into the position of a colonized people. Serbianization became the national policy of the Belgrade reactionaries, dungeons –their sole means of pacification, economic exploitation– their economic principle. Your struggle against the Greater –Serbian oppressors and their Macedonian agents helped you to survive three difficult years. This struggle helped you to become politically conscious and mature, and in this struggle you found your best allies. These were the other oppressed peoples of Yugoslavia. This included the fraternal Serbian people, behind whom the Belgrade oppressors tried to hide. In the struggle against Greater-Serbian oppression, you have forged your brotherhood with the other Yugoslav peoples. This brotherhood, in addition to your struggle, has become another guarantee of the consolidation of freedom.  

People of Macedonia,

In a treacherous attack the German fascist imperialists invaded Yugoslavia in 1941, and for the fourth time in a 30-year period Macedonia was divided by Hitler´s fascist lackeys. [3]

The occupation by the Greater-Bulgarian authorities marked the beginning of the most difficult years for the people of Macedonia.

Pillage was carried out on an unprecedented scale, the Macedonian peasants were compelled to serve Hitler´s Germany. "Orchestrated economic exploitation" spread all over Macedonia. The requisitions included all the products made by the peasants. The peasants were driven into an abyss of penury. All the other social groups toppled with them into poverty. The entire Macedonian economy was subjected to shameful pillage in the interest of fascist Germany. The Bulgarian fascist traitors became Hitler´s humblest dogs. Speculation reigned as an unwritten rule. Macedonia was economically exhausted. The people of Macedonia sank into unprecedented poverty.

While on the one hand the old invasion slogans that there is no Macedonian people and that we are all Bulgarians were promoted on the other hand the dungeons were filled with Macedonia´s most honorable sons, and in the police stations national fighters were tortured with Inquisition methods. Court martials worked ceaselessly, entire villages and the surrounding areas were interned, the finest sons of Macedonia hanging from gallows. The bloodthirsty fascist occupier intended the physical extermination of the Macedonian people. These modern Huns surpassed in atrocities the most ruthless Turkish gangs.

People of Macedonia,

After long years of bondage, you have learned from experience that combat is the only sure method against oppressors. For the most part, you have implemented this method. At the call to arms issued by the Communist Party of Yugoslavia you responded to the conscience of your finest sons. In their revolutionary spirit you sensed the fighting force of an oppressed people. In their organizational strength you perceived your leader and recognized a capable organizer. In their actions you saw that this struggle would be waged to its successful end, and you did not hesitate to march with your daring leader and organizer.

The revolutionary traditions of Ilinden were revived. This marked the beginning of the most glorious years in your history, the beginning of the epic of a sacred national liberation struggle, in which you were reborn as a nation and in which you felt capable to take your destiny into your own hands. In the unequal struggle, which you entered courageously, for the first time in your history a national liberation army evolved from the small Partisan detachments, an army has made the glory of Macedonia known throughout the world and which has put fear into the hearts of the fascist occupiers. Grand victories in Kicevo, Debar, Tušin, Ristovac, Zletovo, Kratovo and Strumica have made your army famous. Its sacred oath is to liberate Macedonia. Inspired by love for its people, imbued with the spirit of Delcev, impressed by the fighting elan of Tito, your army will accomplish its sacred oath and will not lower its guns until the last occupier has been expelled from our homeland, until the last military representative and traitor has been justly punished and until freedom has been completely attained and secured.

People of Macedonia,

Surprised by your determination, fearing the courageous assaults of your army, the deceiful fascist occupier has understood that he cannot hold onto Macedonia all by himself. In the time-worn fashion of all invaders, he sought out and found loathsome outcasts, ready to betray their own people at the sight of even a meager reward. Ckatrovists, Guzelovists, Kitincevists and Cipuševists [4] shamefully competed to betray you. These repulsive men started by spying for the fascist occupier and now they are organizing bands, composed of the most criminal Albanian and local elements fighting against our National Liberation Army, eager to torture the peaceful Macedonian population and to burn Macedonian villages.

The frightened fascist occupier has laid down his last card in combat against the people of Macedonia. The bloodthirsty gang of Vanco Mihajlov, smeared with the blood of innocent Macedonian sons, has appeared on the scene of treachery now headed by the well known fascist agent Aleksandar Stanišev. [5] Professional murderers from the streets of Sofia attempt in vain, with terrorists consisting of gamblers and drunks, to obstruct the liberation struggle of the Macedonian people.

These villainous outcasts perceive as the greatest danger to their traitorous plans the militant unity of the Macedonian people with all the other peoples of Yugoslavia. –Furiously striking against the Serbian people, they seek to disrupt the unity of the fraternal Yugoslav peoples, to separate the people of Macedonia from them, to isolate them in the struggle and strip them of their allies so that they can be destroyed more easily. In their mad campaign against Marshal Tito they attempted to separate the people of Macedonia from the ingenious leader of the National Liberation Struggle and to bury forever the freedom of the Macedonian people. Spreading lies and repulsive slander about the new, democratic and federal Yugoslavia, they seek to drive the people of Macedonia into the fascist losers´camp so that tomorrow they will be brought to trial together with other fascist criminals.

Greater-Serbian hegemonists following Draza Mihjlovic and Milan Nedic, unmasked as lackeys of the occupier and repudiated by the Serbian people, despised by the democratic world, totally routed in Macedonia, in hiding in various German outposts, await the moment to throw themselves at the Macedonian people and subject them to the oppression of the Belgrade chauvinists.

In Western Macedonia, Albanian fascists gathered around Dzemo [6] and Mefail [7] are still active. Supported by the Ckatrovists and Kocarevists [8] they burn Macedonian villages and mercilessly torture the Macedonian population.

All these brothers in crime and enemies of the Macedonian people are faithful servants to the same master –bloodthirsty Hitler. However, you were quick to discover the infernal plans of these criminals and to give them an appropriate response. –A merciless struggle against fascism and the bloody Greater-Bulgarian occupier, was your reply to all their attempts to subject you to fascist bondage. –Routing counter-revolutionary bands in their own nests was your reply to all their attempts to divide the Macedonian people and to stifle their struggle. –Indestructible brotherhood and unity with the other Yugoslav peoples, was your reply to all their attempts to isolate you in the struggle. –Development of a new, democratic and federal Yugoslavia headed by Marshall Tito and your determination in the ranks of the National Liberation Front of Macedonia was your reply to all the plans of Greater Serbian hegemonists and the criminal aspirations of Greater-Bulgarian fascists.

Your just struggle for freedom is your response today to all those adversaries. Tomorrow no force will be able to save those corrupt knaves from the merciless people´s court. No force will be able to keep your avenging first from cracking the skulls of those repulsive outcasts and vile oppressors. No force wil be able to lessen your magnificent liberation struggle. The struggle for your just ideals is nearing its triumphant end, full national emancipation.

People of Macedonia,

From the arduous struggle and the blood of the finest Macedonian sons, this National Council has evolved today as a symbol of your freedom and an expression of your sovereignty and proclaims to the entire world the full national emancipation of the Macedonian people in THE FIRST, FREE MACEDONIAN STATE. The centuries-old ideals of the Macedonian people have been attained. For the first time since Samuel, the people of Macedonia have created their own state; for the first time the people of Macedonia will feel at home in Macedonia; for the first time they will no longer be a bargaining chip between imperialist forces but an emancipated nation in a free state. This is the greatest achievement in the history of our people, forged by the great Anti-Fascist Front with the blood of the finest Macedonian sons and the aid of the other Yugoslav peoples, protected in a new federal community of the peoples of Yugoslavia.

In view of the vital interests of the Macedonian people and their common struggle with the other Yugoslav peoples against Greater-Serbian hegemony and in view of the sacrifices made fighting the common fascist occupier, the first Macedonian National Council can state on your behalf that THE PEOPLE OF MACEDONIA HAVE BECOME NATIONALLY EMANCIPATED AND AN EQUAL MEMBER OF A NEW, DEMOCRATIC AND FEDERAL YUGOSLAVIA, based on the principles promulgated at the Second Session of the Anti-Fascist Council of National Liberation of Yugoslavia (AVNOJ), which recognized your right to national emancipation. This has made the people of Macedonia builders of a new Yugoslavia, which is a result and an expresson of the indestructible brotherhood and unity of all its peoples, and the greatest  guarantee of freedom of each nation separately as well as of the freedom of all Yugoslav peoples together. As a part of a new, democratic and federal Yugoslavia the people of Macedonia have become an ally to the great victorious forces.

In view of the centuries-old ideals of the people of Macedonia, the first Macedonian National Council proclaims to the entire world its just and resolute aspiration FOR THE UNIFICATION OF THE WHOLE MACEDONIAN PEOPLE on the principle based on the right to self-determination. This would put an end to the oppresson of the people of Macedonia in all its parts and would provide conditions for genuine solidarity and peace among the Balkan peoples.

Aware that fascism is the greatest foe to small nations and to Slavdom, the first Macedonian National Council resolutely states that the people of Macedonia will not lower their guns until fascism and all its agents are totally routed.

Struggling for the liberation of the people of Macedonia, the first Macedonian National Council PROCLAIMS THE RIGHT TO FULL LIBERTY AND EQUALITY OF ALL THE NATIONALITES IN MACEDONIA.

Macedonians, brothers and sisters!

The first Macedonian National Council proclaims these sacred principles while the fraternal and victorious Red Army is marching on German soil and steadily approaching Berlin, when our Anglo-American allies have opened a front on the Atlantic aimed at Hitler´s European dungeon, when the Allied armies are marching from the South towards the Alps, when Tito´s army is courageously preparing to march on Belgrade, Zagreb, Ljubljana, Sarajevo and Skopje.

The first Macedonian National Council proclaims these grand principles in accordance with the fundamental decisions of the Moscow and Tehran conferences, which guarantee the right to emancipation of all nations engaged in the struggle against the fascist occupiers.

At this moment we are deciding the destiny of our people for centuries to come. History has set you a decisive test. You shall determine whether Macedonia will be a dungeon for slaves or a free homeland for free men. The sacrifices of our brothers and veterans call you to a final assault. Our people, the people of our homeland, call us to the final and decisive battle. Join the national liberation front and prove that you are deserving sons of a courageous people. Strike against the bloody occupier and assert that you are capable of winning your freedom and developing your homeland.

Macedonians under Bulgaria and Greece,

The unification of the entire Macedonian people depends on your participation in the gigantic anti-fascist front. Only by fighting the vile fascist occupier will you gain your right to self-determination and to unification of the entire Macedonian people within the framework of Tito´s Yugoslavia, which has become a free community of emancipated and equal peoples. May the struggle of the Macedonian Piedmont incite you to even bolder combat against the fascist oppressors! May the path of this part of Macedonia become your path since it is the only one that leads to freedom and unification of the entire Macedonian nation! May your participation in the general anti-fascist struggle give life to the principles proclaimed by the first Macedonian National Council and erase the borders erected dividing brother from brother, Macedonian from Macedonian.

Brothers Albanians, Turks and Walachians,

The invaders of Macedonia have always aspired to divide and create dissent among our peoples in order to facilitate their rule over our homeland and to rob our peoples. The hardships  experienced in the past indicate that the interests of our peoples are the same and that we share a common destiny. At this decisive instant all of us are constructing a free Macedonia. We shall be masters of the Macedonia we have developed.

Your sons are participating in the Macedonian army and have already taken command posts. Your veterans were elected to attend the National Councils as people´s representatives. The first Macedonian National Council proclaimed the freedom and equality of all peoples in Macedonia. Mobilize your forces as soon as possible so that we can attain these sacred principles. Take an equal part in the struggle against the occupier so that you can participate on an equal footing in the development of a free Macedonia –a free homeland of all peoples.

Veterans of the Ilinden Uprising,

The bloody fascist occupier has speculated with your sacrifices and with your blood. Shamefully, they have falsified the objectives of your selfless struggle in the past. They have attempted to diminish your authority, abusing you as a front for the terrible plunder and terror practised in your land. Deceitfully they have attempted at crucial times to divide your people into the old and the young.

The objectives of your struggle have been attained. Macedonia has won its freedom, the unrealized ideal for which thousands of your comrades gave their lives in the course of the Ilinden epic. Your veteran and comrade Dimitar Vlahov is one of our leaders. Your place is next to your sons and grandsons. Onward into combat for the ideals for which your generation fought and our generation will realize! Onward, old and young, in the construction of a free Macedonia.

Macedonian emigrants in Bulgaria,

The bondage of your Macedonian homeland has separated you from your homes, from those dear to you, from your villages and towns. The dreadful fate of your oppressed homeland forced you into the clutches of the deceitful Bulgarian dictator. The evil invasion plans of the bloody Bulgarian court determined for you a traitorous role as military instigators in the Balkans and a whip in the hands of tyrants used against the freedom-loving Bulgarian people.

We, the sons of a militant Macedonia, have always distinguished between the murderous gangs of Ivan Mihajlov and honorable Macedonian emigrants. We have always known that in your chest the heart of our homeland has never ceased beating, and that our ideals are your ideals, and that you have always aspired to return to your free and unwavering Macedonian homeland.

The first Macedonian National Council extends to you militant, fraternal greetings and calls on you to join the common struggle for the liberation of Macedonia and for the development of a free Macedonian state.

Reject the self-proclaimed leaders gathered around bloodsucking Ivan Mihajlov! Join our National Liberation Front to expel the fascist oppressors! Take part in the liberation of the all-Macedonian homeland! Contribute your share to its development! May our determination be a reply to all plans of oppression! May our unity strike mortal fear into the hearts of all Macedonian foes! May our militant patriotism become a guarantee for a better future of our homeland!  

Workers of Macedonia!

You were the first to comprehend that is the greatest nemesis, the most cruel oppressor of our people, and you were the first to join the struggle against this adversary. In the course of this three-year-long struggle behind every success there are the sacrifices of your veterans. All the victories in the struggle against the bloody fascist occupier have sprung from your comrades´ blood.

In free Macedonia, within the new Yugoslavia you shall begin a happier and more respected life.

On the eve of liberation all of your comrades should be in the ranks of the struggle. Abandon fascist workshops, factories and mines! Abandon the factories in fascist Germany! Join our National Liberation Army to become its backbone! With your mass participation become veterans of the National Liberation Struggle! With your courage become the pride of our people! With your asserted determination develop a free Macedonia and become its most loyal builders! Transform the new Macedonian state into an authentic, emancipated and just homeland of all the working people.

Peasants of Macedonia,

On your own shoulders you have felt the meaning of fascist oppresson. In the past three years the fruits of your labour were plundered in the most shameful way, and you were left only the work of slaves. In poverty and injustice. The fascist oppressors let you live so that you could work for their military machine. Aggressive marauders are growing fat on your labour while you remain hungry, naked and barefoot. Fascism has taken everything and given you nothing in return.

Now the destiny of the Macedonian people is at stake. The fate of Macedonia is the fate of the people of Macedonia. The fate of Macedonia is the fate of the Macedonian peasants, because you constitute its largest part. Do not give your products to the fascist gluttons! Hide your wheat! Fight off the requisition commissions! Burn the fascist town halls. Do not pay taxes to your oppressors! Courageously join the ranks of our army! Act as one in order to attain freedom and develop a free Macedonia!

Young people of Macedonia,

You were the first victims of the fascist occupiers, and the first to spill your blood in combat against them. Your courage proven, you have set an example of how to serve the ideals of the people. Today you constitute the most militant part of our army.

In the struggle waged today we are securing a better future for the young people. You should develop a free Macedonia. With all your efforts support the implementation of the ASNOM decisions, the new, people´s democratic rule in Macedonia as well as our Macedonian state.

Fighters of the National Liberation Army of Macedonia,
Partisans, soldiers, officers, non-commissioned
officers and political workers,

The courage you have shown has won honor for Macedonia throughout the world. With unprecedented self-sacrifice you have put fear into the hearts of the fascist occupiers. With the blood of your best comrades you have contributed to the glorious history of the Macedonian people. Victory is near, but even greater efforts must be invested to win liberty for the people of Macedonia. You are not alone in the gigantic struggle being waged today. You are a part of the glorious National Liberation Army of Yugoslavia, and thus an ally to the victorious Red Army and the Anglo-American armies, which are striking the final blows against the fascist occupiers.

Burned villages all over Macedonia you have to avenge them! The oppressed people of Macedonia await their liberation! Even more firmly hold on to your guns captured with blood, strengthen even more your discipline and your military skills! Raise even higher the banner of Goce Delcev! Prepare for the final blow against the fascist occupier! Prepare for the liberation of Macedonia!

Mothers, wives and sisters of Macedonia,

You have contributed your share in blood to this magnificent struggle. With the freedom of the people of Macedonia you will gain your own freedom. In the free Macedonia of tomorrow you will be its free and equal members.

Participate in even greater numbers in the national liberation struggle! Mobilize all your comrades in the struggle for the front. The fighters at the front lines need your support. The liberty of your people depends on your support. The development of a new state is inconceivable without your equal participation. Exert all your efforts to realize as soon as possible the principles proclaimed by the first Macedonian National Council.

People of Macedonia, brothers and sisters!

It is the dawn of liberation! A free Macedonian state has evolved from bloody combat, a state within a new, democratic and federal Yugoslavia. However, the fighting is not over yet. Harness all your forces to win freedom as soon as possible, to preserve the achievements of our current struggle, to mobilize everyone in the construction of our state and to make it a happy homeland for a happy people.

Everything for the front –everything for victory!

Long live the first Macedonian state, within a new, democratic and federal Yugoslavia!

Long live the Anti-Fascist Council of the National Liberation of Yugoslavia!

Long live the National Committee, headed by the beloved leader of Yugoslavia, Marshall Tito!

Long live the indestructible brotherhood and unity of the peoples of Yugoslavia!

Long live the National Liberation Army of Yugoslavia!

On behalf of the Anti-Fascist Council of National Liberation of Macedonia:


Chairman: Metodi Andonov-Cento, merchant from Prilep; Vicechairman: Panko Brašnarov, teacher from Veles and Emanuel Cuckov, Štip High School principal; Secretaries: Ljubco Arsov, bank clerk from Štip and Dr. Vladimir Polezinovski, director from Kicevo; Members: Venko Markovski, poet from Skopje, Cvetko Uzunovski, worker from Prespa, Blagoje Fotev, farmer from the village of Bistrica, Bitola region, Major General Mihail Apostolski, Commander of the NAL and PDM, from Štip, Strahil Gigov, Chief of the Personnel Department of the General Headquarters, Petre Piruze, lawyer from Ohrid, Kiril Petrušev, worker from Skopje, Jovan Jorgov, priest from the village of Drenovo, Epaminonda Pop-Andonov, professor from Strunica, Genadie Leškov, farmer from the village of Drenovo, Brodsko region, Kemal Agoli, student from Debar, Lazar Sokolov, economist from Kumanovo, Vera Aceva, housewife from Prilep, Kember Hasan, farmer from the village of Disan, Aco Petrovski, tailor from Skopje, Mladen Georgiev Celopecki, farmer from the village of Celopek, Liljana Calovska, student from Bitola.

36. ACHOM, cTp. 259-270
[1] Actually, the discussions to divide Macedonia were conducted after the Second Balkan War in 1913.
[2] At the end of World War I, the Versailles agreement confirmed the 1913 division of Macedonia.
[3] According to the Vienna agreement, signed in April 1941, 4/5 of Vardar Macedonia with 870,000 inhabitants were occupied by Bulgaria, and the western part of Macedonia (1/5) with 232,000 inhabitants was occupied by Italy and Albania.
[4] Automist and profascist groups were led by: Dimitar Ckatrov, Dimitar Guzelov, Spiro Kitincev and Kosta Cipusev.
[5] Minister of Internal Affairs and Public Health of Fascist Bulgaria, in the cabinet of Ivan Bagrjanov, from July 1st to September 1944.
[6] Hasan Dzemail, was born in the village of Simnica, in the Gostivar region. He was a farmer and a worker. In the beginning of 1943 he was one of the first organizers of terrorist Balist gangs and an active collaborator of the Italian and the German occupiers. He was executed as a war criminal on May 3rd or 4th, 1945.
[7] Mefail Sehu was born in the village of Zajas, in the Kicevo region. He was a genderme in pre-war Yugoslavia. During the occupation he collaborated with the Italian and German occupiers. He was killed at the end of the war.
[8] This refers to the sympathizers of Ilija Kocarev, who was mayor of Ohrid during the war.

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