The Uses of China by Elidor Mehilli

“If someone asks how large our population is,” Albanian Communist authorities were fond of declaring in the 1960s, “we say that it is 701 million.” Albania, which marked this week 105 years since the declaration of independence from the Ottoman Empire, was in fact a lot tinier than China’s hundreds of millions. And a great deal more insecure.


Read full text at "Sources and Methods"
 A blog of the History and Public Policy Program at the Woodrow Wilson Center.

What a surprise drone and a soccer brawl reveal about the Balkans by Elidor Mehilli


The European Championship qualifier in Belgrade between Albania and Serbia was cut short earlier this month. Initial scuffles between players ended with a field invasion by angry Serb fans and hard objects flying across the stands. A drone flew above the stadium, carrying a flag with “Greater Albania” emblazoned on it.

The timing could not have been more awkward: The Albanian prime minister Edi Rama was scheduled to visit Belgrade the following week in the first official trip since Albanian Communist party chief Enver Hoxha paid a visit to Josip Broz Tito back in 1946. In light of the incident, the visit has been postponed to Nov. 10. Diplomatic relations between the two countries remain tense.

Read the full piece at Quartz