The Fusion of Regional and Cold War Problems: The Macedonian Triangle Between Greece, Bulgaria and Yugoslavia, 1963–80
The Soviet Union instrumentalized the Macedonian question in favour of Bulgaria whenever there was friction in Yugoslav–Soviet relations. The Bulgarian–Yugoslav conflict over Macedonia assumed ideological and political dimensions within the framework of the socialist world. Indeed, it is possible to argue that in this case, the ideological Communist discourse tended to mask an ongoing nationalist dispute which preceded the Cold War. On its part, Greece sided with Bulgaria as far as the terms ‘Macedonian nation’ and ‘Macedonian minorities’ were concerned, but this did not mar Greek–Yugoslav relations seriously. The crux of the matter was that the Macedonian question became mainly a problem of identity.