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Balli Kombëtar

Balli Kombëtar
Participant in World War II
The forces of the Balli Kombëtar
Active 1942–1945
Ideology Albanian nationalism
Greater Albania
Leaders Midhat Frashëri
Allies Nazi Germany (from late 1943)
Opponents Chetniks
Albanian Partisans
Yugoslav Partisans
Kingdom of Italy
Battles and wars World War II in Yugoslavia
Albanian Resistance of World War II

The Balli Kombëtar (literally National Front) was an Albanian

  1. ^ Robert Elsie (30 March 2010). Historical Dictionary of Albania. Scarecrow Press. p. 30.  
  2. ^ Jelavich, Barbara (1983). History of the Balkans, Vol. 2: Twentieth Century. Cambridge University Press. p. 274.  
  3. ^ Albania in Occupation and War: From Fascism to Communism 1940-1945 by Owen Pearson [2]
  4. ^ Agnes Mangerich, Albanian escape, 2010, 6
  5. ^ , Bideleux Robert & Jeffries Ian, The Balkans - A post - communist History, 2007, 525
  6. ^ Fischer, Bernd Jürgen (1999). Albania at War, 1939-1945. Purdue University Press. pp. 132–133.  
  7. ^ Between Serb and Albanian: a history of Kosovo by Miranda Vickers
  8. ^ a b c d e Owen Pearson. Albania in Occupation and War: From Fascism to Communism 1940-1945. Retrieved 4 August 2011. 
  9. ^ Albania in the twentieth century: a history, Volume 2 by Owen Pearson
  10. ^ Albania at war, 1939-1945
  11. ^ Tito, Mihailović, and the allies, 1941-1945 By Walter R. Roberts
  12. ^ Richard Morrock The Psychology of Genocide and Violent Oppression: A Study of Mass Cruelty
  13. ^ Philip J. Cohen, David Riesman. Serbia's Secret War: Propaganda and the Deceit of History. Texas A&M University Press, 1996 ISBN 978-0-89096-760-7, p. 100.
  14. ^ Nigel Thomas, Peter Abbott. Partisan warfare 1941-45. Osprey Publishing, 1983, ISBN 978-0-85045-513-7, p. 27: "Balli Kombetar, however, preferred German rule to Italian and, believing that only the Germans would allow Kosovo to remain Albanian after the war, began to collaborate.".
  15. ^ Tom Winnifrith. Badlands, borderlands: a history of Northern Epirus/Southern Albania "Balle Kombetar, strongly Albanian nationalist, Muslim and at times pro-German". Duckworth, 2002, ISBN 978-0-7156-3201-7, p. 26:
  16. ^ a b c Dezhgiu, Muharrem (28 May 2006). "Safet Butka, Luftetar per Mbrojtjen e Idealit Kombetar". Lajmi Shqip (in Albanian). Retrieved 30 August 2010. 
  17. ^ a b c Frances Trix. The Sufi journey of Baba Rexheb. Retrieved 3 August 2011. 
  18. ^ Irene Grünbaum, Katherine Morris. Escape Through the Balkans: The Autobiography of Irene Grünbaum. Retrieved 3 August 2011. 
  19. ^ a b c Sabrina P. Ramet. The three Yugoslavias: state-building and legitimation, 1918-2005. Retrieved 4 August 2011. 
  20. ^ former ballist Safet Hyseni. "Safet Hyseni: Mefail Shehu (Zajazi) alias Mefaili i Madh, një strateg ushtarak". Retrieved 7 January 2011. 
  21. ^ a b c Cyprian Blamires. World fascism: a historical encyclopedia, Volume 1. Retrieved 14 August 2011. 
  22. ^ International Crisis Group. "SERBIA'S SANDZAK: STILL FORGOTTEN" (PDF). Retrieved 24 November 2011. 
  23. ^ "Nezavisna revija Sandzak". Retrieved 24 November 2011. 
  24. ^ Robert Elsie. "Balli Kombëtar: The Ten-Point Programme". Retrieved 17 February 2011. 
  25. ^ Robert Elsie. "Milan von Šufflay: Mediaeval Albania". Retrieved 16 June 2011. 
  26. ^ Robert Elsie. "Baron Franz Nopcsa". Retrieved 16 June 2011. 
  27. ^ Robert Elsie. "Mid’hat bey Frashëri:The Epirus Question - the Martyrdom of a People". Archived from the original on 23 July 2011. Retrieved 16 June 2011. 
  28. ^ Robert Elsie. "Balli Kombëtar: The Ten-Point Programme". Retrieved 17 February 2011. 
  29. ^ Filip Zdraveski. "Shkendija fined, their fans can't go to away games". Retrieved 16 June 2011. 


See also

Tetovo was once the largest Balli Kombëtar base in Macedonia and still has strong ties with the name. The Tetovo-based football club KF Shkendija has a large support firm called the Ballistët. They are known in the Macedonian media for their use of hardline nationalistic rhetorics in football matches.[29]

Balli Kombëtar fighters fled the Balkans to Austria, the United States, Australia, Switzerland and South America. The Ballists who did not escape were executed. In Macedonia the most notable leader of the movement was Xhem Hasa of Gostivar, where a statue dedicated to him was placed after the overthrow of the Communist regime.

After World War II ended, the Balli Kombëtar were defeated by Yugoslav and Albanian communists. The Ballists were so thoroughly discredited by their collaboration with the Nazis that there was no chance of them having a role in postwar Albania, though it took until 1945 to finish them off. Ironically, the Ballists' decision to work with the Nazis brought about the one thing they had sought to prevent--a Communist-dominated government.

Midhat Frashëri was the leader of the Balli Kombëtar.


The original objectives of Balli Kombëtar were set out in 1942 in the following ten-point program, also known as the “Decalogue”[27]

The Ten-Point Program

Midhat Frashëri believed that Albanian provinces under the Ottoman Empire were unfairly partitioned during Milan Šufflay, helped strengthen the nationalists' cause.[25][26] The Balli Kombëtar believed that Albanians were "Aryans of Illyrian heritage".[21] This helped gaining support by the Nazis.[21]


Parts of Montenegro and the Sandžak were incorporated into Albania in 1941. The cities included Bijelo Polje, Pljevlja, Tutin, Plav, Gusinje, Rozaje and Ulcinj. Some of the Yugoslav Muslims that lived in these regions sided with the Albanians. Akif Blyta, former mayor of Novi Pazar and member of Nexhip Draga's party,[22] Dzemail Konicanin and Ballist forces under Shaban Polluzha successfully repelled Chetnik forces back from Novi Pazar and crushed their stronghold in Banja.[23]

Montenegro and Sandžak region

A large number of Serbs and Macedonians were also killed across western Macedonia as Ballist forces and the SS Skanderbeg division fought the Yugoslav Partisans. The main centres of the Balli Kombëtar in these regions were Kosovska Mitrovica, Drenica and Tetovo. It was noted that the Balli Kombëtar in these regions were more aggressive than the Ballists of Albania.[19] With the Germans driven out by the Yugoslav Partisans, and the Albanian communists claiming victory in Albania, Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito ordered the collection of weapons in Kosovo and the arrest of prominent Albanians.[19] The order was not well-received and, combined with the passions felt about Kosovo, inflamed an insurrection. On 2 December 1944, Ballists from the Drenica region attacked the Trepča mining complex and other targets.[19] Similarly in Kičevo, Gostivar and Tetovo, the remaining Ballists tried to remain in control of the region after the Yugoslav Partisans announced victory.[20] After the war, most Balli Kombëtar leaders were either imprisoned, executed, or tortured due their alliance with axis forces. Although the insurrection was crushed, it was not until 1947 that Kosovo was fully reintegrated into Yugoslavia.[21]

Kosovo and Macedonia

After forming the NAZI collaborator government, the Ballists pressed hard against the Communists.[8] They destroyed a fairly large Communist partisan group southwest of Tirana.[8] With the Grand Alliance established, the Germans began losing the war. This also affected the situation in Albania as the Germans could not supply the Ballists. With the current situation favouring the Communists, the partisans began a full-scale attack on the Balli Kombëtar. British liaison officers in Albania noted that the Communists were using the arms they received to fight fellow Albanians far more than to harass the Germans.[17] The west noted that the Communists could not have won without the supplies and armaments from the British, America and Yugoslavia,[17] and that the LNC were not afraid of murdering their own countrymen.[18]

These factors contributed to members of the Balli Kombëtar forming a strong hatred for the Communists. [17] In the south of Albania, the rivalry between the Communists and the Balli Kombëtar heated up. The Communists almost immediately repudiated the Mukaj agreement, and fearing the British might open a second front in the Balkans and lend their support to the Ballists, they issued orders that the Balli Kombëtar be eliminated wherever it was found.[16], faithful to his word.Melçan On his way home, he was informed of the first clashes between Albanian partisans and the Balli Kombëtar. Upon hearing such news, he killed himself on 19 September 1943 in the village of [16] After the denouncement of the Mukje agreement by Albanian communists, he feared a civil war between Albanians and when asked on the matter, always stated that "the only Albanian that I will kill will be myself."[16]

Albania and Chameria

The Balli Kombëtar, which had fought against the Italians, were threatened by the superior forces of the LNC and the Yugoslav Partisans, who were backed by the Allies.[11] In the autumn of 1943, Nazi Germany occupied all of Albania after Italy was defeated. Fearing reprisals from larger forces, the Balli Kombëtar made a deal with the Germans and formed a "neutral government" in Tirana which continued its war with the LNC and the Yugoslav Partisans.[12][13][14][15]

The Mukje Agreement immediately triggered a hostile reaction from the Yugoslav representative in Albania, Svetozar Vukmanoviċ. He denounced the agreement and put pressure on the LNC to repute it immediately,[9] and Yugoslav Communist leader Milovan Đilas subsequently described the Balli Kombëtar as "Albanian Fascists".[10]

Despite their hatred of the occupiers, the Ballists feared that an Allied victory in the war might well result in Communist control of Albania.[8] Their lukewarm attitude towards the British was also fostered by their desire to preserve the ethnically united Albanian state under the borders drawn by the Italians in 1941, for they bitterly opposed and dreaded the loss of Kosovo and Debar to Yugoslavia once again, and feared that the Allies in their support of the Greeks might prevent them from claiming Chameria and deprive them of their southern provinces of Korçe and Gjirokaster, the heartland of their liberation movement.[8] They regarded the Yugoslavs and the Greeks as their real enemies.[8]

. World War II because they stood for the restoration of occupied nations under their borders as they existed prior to [7] too could not guarantee that Kosovo would be a part of Albania,Allies, the vague mutual tolerance that had existed between the Ballists and Communists quickly evaporated.The Mukje Agreement Following the [6] With

The Italian Protectorate of Albania established by Italy in August 1941.



  • History 1
    • Albania and Chameria 1.1
    • Kosovo and Macedonia 1.2
    • Montenegro and Sandžak region 1.3
  • Ideology 2
  • The Ten-Point Program 3
  • Legacy 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6

[5][4] Finally Balli Kombëtar joined Nazi puppet government and fought as an ally against antifascist guerrilla groups.[3]" (Albania for the Albanians, Death to the Traitors).Shqipëria Shqiptarëve, Vdekje Tradhëtarëvet The motto of the Balli Kombëtar was: "[2].Midhat Frashëri and Ali Këlcyra It was led by [1]

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