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Les guerres balkaniques (1912–1913)

Conflits, enjeux, mémoires

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Edited By Catherine Horel

Les contributions réunies dans cet ouvrage sur les guerres balkaniques se veulent une interrogation sur leur impact international et dans les sociétés concernées, elles questionnent également la mémoire qu’elles y ont laissée et le rôle de celle-ci dans les relations interétatiques.
Les auteurs s’intéressent tout d’abord aux conflits régionaux et aux questions territoriales, à l’expérimentation de la guerre et à la notion de patrie, aux relations entre civils et militaires, aux bandes armées. Un deuxième thème concerne plus particulièrement l’Empire ottoman puis la Turquie à travers l’importance de la Méditerranée, les indépendances successives des pays balkaniques, le devenir des villes ottomanes. La troisième partie renvoie à une tendance actuelle de la recherche qui entreprend de faire l’histoire des interventions internationales et des opérations de paix : l’action de la fondation Carnegie ; la spécificité de la diplomatie balkanique ; l’absence des grandes puissances et la fin du concert européen. Enfin, la quatrième partie traite des mémoires des guerres balkaniques : imagologie, censure et caricature ; les propagandes comparées des belligérants et des grandes puissances ; lieux de mémoire ; pour une écriture commune de l’histoire du conflit.
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The London Conference of Ambassadors and the Creation of the Albanian State, 1912-1914

1. The London Conference of Ambassadors

Extract

1

Erwin A. SCHMIDL

Landesverteidigungsakademie, Vienne

The creation of Albania in 1912-13 can be interpreted from at least three different viewpoints : For Albania and the Albanians, it meant the establishment of a national state, encompassing a large part, though not all, of the formerly Ottoman territories inhabited by “Albanians”. There never was a unified Albanian territory ; rather, Albanians (Shkipetars) lived in several vilayets (provinces) of the Ottoman Empire. Unlike in Serbia or Bulgaria, there was also no “national” church to form the basis for the development of a national identity. Most Albanians were either Muslims (including the feudal ruling class), Roman-Catholic (among them the intellectual élite in the North), or Orthodox Christians (especially in the South, where Greeks and other ethnic groups lived next to Albanians). Consequently, Albania developed not around one, but actually around several centres : Shkodër (Scutari) in the North, Durrës (Durazzo) and Tirana in the center, Vlorë in the South of today’s Albania, plus the Kosovo region and Macedonia. In many regions, the population was mixed, making the establishment of border lines particularly difficult, and Albanians lived in a region encompassing the modern states of Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo, Macedonia (FYROM), Bulgaria and Greece besides today’s Albania. For Albanians, the creation of an “ethnic” or “national” identity began rather late in the nineteenth century, later than for most of the Balkan nations2. ← 169 | 170 →

A second viewpoint would be that to see the creation of Albania as one...

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