Page 1

The Balkan Club May 23, 2011 Volume 1, Issue 1

Balkan Ways

Inside this issue:

Balkan Cuisine


History: Pre-Roman States




Film Review


Interest Survey Results


Special points of interest:  May 27: Romania Presentation by Romanian KFOR and film.  June 3: Local Cultural Brief by KSF CSM (planning phase)  August: Dokufest in Prizren

Bulgarian tarator

Turkish tarator (right) and fried

Club News The Balkan Club held its first meeting Friday, June 20. A successful showing of KFOR soldiers from a variety of units and civilians was made. An introduction was made by SGT Greg Sell. He made known the answers to the country geography quiz which has been circulating around Camp Bondsteel for a week. The intentions for the creation of The Balkan Club were shared with members as well as

the original proposal presented to the Task Force Falcon command. Members participated in an interest survey in order to identify the most popular topics relating to the Balkan region. The results of the survey are posted on page 4. History in general ranked very high. Members are reminded that their input is extremely important to the success of the club. All are invited to make film

and book recommendations, present a topic which interests them, or provide a guest speaker or entertainer. A membership distribution list is generated from the attendance at a meeting. Please share club information with anyone interested in the Balkans. Remember, All KFOR soldiers and civilian employees at Camp Bondsteel are welcome as members.

Balkan Cuisine Tarator is consumed in Albania similarly to other countries. However, water, nuts, fruits and dill aren't used. Olive oil is often used in place of vegetable oil. In a different variation, this dish is enriched with a plain omelet, cut into little pieces and added to the mixture. Due to the richness the eggs add, this variation of tarator may be consumed as a main course. In Bulgaria tarator is a popular appetizer (meze) but also served as a side dish along with Shopska salad with most meals. Sunflower and olive oil are more commonly used and walnuts are sometimes omitted. Tarator is a popular dish in Bulgaria; a salad version of tarator is known as

"Snowwhite salad" (Bulgarian: салата Снежанка- "salata Snezhanka" or "Snejanka"), also called Dry Tarator. It is made of thick yogurt, without water. It can be served as an appetizer or as a side to the main meal. It is a common refresher during the summer. In Greece, a similar meal is known as tzatziki. Tzatziki usually contains olive oil, parsley and mint in addition to the ingredients listed above. The word used for the Cypriot variant, ttalattouri, derives from the word tarator via Persian. Tarator is a popular salad and dip in Serbia rather than a soup; it is also known as "tarator salata". It is made with yoghurt, sliced cucumber and diced garlic, and served cold.

In Turkish Cuisine, "tarator" is a dip sauce generally eaten with fried fish and squid. The sauce includes white bread crumbs, walnuts, lemon juice or vinegar, salt, pepper, garlic, herbs and yoghurt. One Turkish version using the name, tahinli tarator, is a similar dish specifically containing tahin or sesame. In the coastal towns of Turkey, fried squid or mussels are almost always served with tarator sauce. In FYROM, tarator or taratur is made with garlic, soured milk, cucumber, sunflower oil and salt. It is garnished with dill and served either room temperature or chilled (sometimes by adding ice blocks).

Page 2

Balkan Ways

Volume 1, Issue 1

History: Pre-Roman states (4th to 1st c. BC) The Illyrian king, Bardyllis turned Illyria into a formidable local power in the 4th century BC. The main cities of the Illyrian kingdom were Scodra (present-day Shkodra, Albania) and Rhizon (presentday Risan, Montenegro). In 359 BC, King Perdiccas III of Macedon was killed by attacking Illyrians. But in 358 BC, Philip II of Macedon, father of Alexander the Great, defeated the Illyrians and assumed control of their territory as far as Lake Ohrid. Alexander himself routed the forces of the Illyrian chieftain Cleitus in 335 BC, and Illyrian tribal leaders and soldiers accompanied Alexander on his conquest of Persia. After Alexander's death in 323 BC, the Greek states started fighting among

themselves again (esp. Southern Greeks against Northern Greeks this time), while up North, independent Illyrian kingdoms again arose. In 312 BC, King Glaukias seized Epidamnus. By the end of the 3rd century BC, an Illyrian kingdom based in Scodra controlled parts of northern Albania, Montenegro, and Herzegovina. Under Queen Teuta, Illyrians attacked Roman merchant vessels plying the Adriatic Sea and gave Rome an excuse to invade the Balkans. In the Illyrian Wars of 229 BC and 219 BC, Rome overran the Illyrian settlements in the Neretva river valley and suppressed the piracy that had made the Adriatic unsafe. In 180 BC, the Dalmatians declared themselves independent of the Illyrian king Gentius, who kept

Various Authors,

his capital at Scodra. The Romans defeated Gentius, the last king of Illyria, at Scodra in 168 BC and captured him, bringing him to Rome in 165 BC. Four client-republics were set up, which were in fact ruled by Rome. Later, the region was directly governed by Rome and organized as a province, with Scodra as its capital. Also, in 168 b.c, by taking advantage of the constant Greek civil wars, the Romans defeated Perseus, the last King of Macedonia and with of their allies in Southern Greece, they became lords of the region. The territories were split to Macedonia, Achaia and Epirus.

Balkan Ways

Volume 1, Issue 1

Geography The Balkan region is a triangular peninsula with a wide northern border, narrowing to a tip as it extends to the south. The Black, the Aegean, the Mediterranean and the Adriatic Seas surround it; they have served as both barriers and entry points. Unlike some peninsulas, the Balkan area has not been physically isolated from nearby regions. In the northeast, Romania is exposed to the steppe regions of the Ukraine, an easy invasion route from prehistoric times to the present. In the northwest, the valley of the Danube and the flat Hungarian plain are easy points of entry. Most (but not all) of the ethnic groups in the region entered by one of

these paths. While it is surrounded on three sides by water, the peninsula is not cut off from neighboring regions to the east, west or south. To the east, the narrow straits of the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles are a natural pathway between the Balkans and Anatolia, and Asia beyond. To the west, the Italian peninsula is only forty miles away across the Adriatic from Albania, and influence from that direction has been another constant. Finally, the Aegean and Mediterranean islands to the south are stepping stones to the eastern Mediterranean and Egypt. Not surprisingly, the Balkan region has been a crossroads for traffic passing to and from all these destinations. The mountains which divide the region are a prominent internal

physical characteristic. The region takes its name from the "Balkan" mountain range in Bulgaria (from a Turkish word meaning "a chain of wooded mountains"). On a larger scale, one long continuous chain of mountains crosses the region in the form of a reversed letter S, from the Carpathians south to the Balkan range proper, before it marches away east into Anatolian Turkey. On the west coast, an offshoot of the Dinaric Alps follows the coast south through Dalmatia and Albania, crosses Greece and continues into the sea in the form of various islands.

Steven W. Sowards,

Film Review: No Mans Land (2001) After various skirmishes, two wounded soldiers, one Bosnian and one Serb, confront each other in a trench in the no man's land between their lines. They wait for dark, trading insults and even finding some common ground; sometimes one has the gun, sometimes the other, sometimes both. Things get complicated when another wounded Bosnian comes to,

but can't move because a bouncing mine is beneath him. The two men cooperate to wave white flags, their lines call the UN (whose high command tries not to help), an English reporter shows up, a French sergeant shows courage, and the three men in no man's land may or may not find a way to all get along.

Duration: 98 minutes Director: Danis Tanovic Writer: Danis Tanovic Stars: Branko Djuric, Rene Bitorajac, Filip Sovagovic

Page 3

The Balkan Club Camp Bondsteel, Kosovo POC: SGT Greg Sell Phone: DSN 314 781 4136 E-mail: POC: Mrs. Ganimete Pashoja-Myftiu Phone: DSN 314 781 6535 E-mail:

The Balkan Club is a voluntary learning community meeting once a week to explore the history, geography, culture, politics and economy of the Balkan region. Activities include and are not limited to lectures or presentations by members or guests, film viewing, and cultural excursions. Membership is open to all KFOR soldiers and civilian employees of Camp Bondsteel. The Balkan Club is a place to cultivate an understanding and appreciation for the Balkan region and to stimulate further, self directed study.

Interest Survey Results Average Interest (1=none, 2=low, 3=medium, 4=high, 5=very high) 4.5 4.25 4 3.75 3.5 3.25 3 2.75 2.5

Interest Level

Balkan Club  

Balkan Club Newsletter Issue 1 Vol. 1

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you