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Ricardo K. S. Mak Hong Kong Baptist University

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1 Ricardo K. S. Mak Hong Kong Baptist University
Major Conflicts after WWII and Attempts to make Peace-Racial Conflicts in the Balkans Ricardo K. S. Mak Hong Kong Baptist University

2 A Definition of Nation A nation contains at least two elements: a culture and a political organization. Without a culture, a mass of people cannot develop into a coherent group. On the other side, an ill-organized cultural group is fragile (Kulturnation and Staatsnation, Friedrich Meinecke)

3 The Uneven Development of Culture and Political Organization
The culture and the political organization of a people seldom develop at the same speed. For instance, the German culture flowered in the 18th century, long before a German state was founded. On the other side, although the nation-state of France was built in the 12th century, the French people continued to search for their national identity in the next seven hundred years.

4 Nation Building Nation building means, thus, the creation of a national culture and /or a political form for a particular group of people. It is usually carried out by a national core group

5 A National Core Group has
A common collective noun (French, Britons, Germans, etc.) A belief in a common ancestor a collective memory (great disaster, war, etc. a homeland or at least a belief in sharing a common homeland common cultural symbols (languages, feasts, flags, etc.) A coherent organization

6 Major Manifestations of Nation Building
The Search for National Identity (Britain and France) National Unification (Italy and Germany) National Separatism (the Balkan States) Reformist Nationalism (Russia)

7 Facilitators of Nation-building
Elite State power National education Mass media

8 Factors that determine interactions between nations:
Realist considerations Mutual perceptions Traditions and historical factors Institutional constraints

9 Political Realism Interest and security Power Geopolitics Strengths
Domestic political and economic needs Who, e.g. the USA, the EU or Russia would be more interested in the Balkans?

10 Mutual Perception Uncle Sam The polar bear The brutal Serbs

11 Historical and Ideological Factors
Wars and conflicts Allies or foes Collaborators or competitors “isms”

12 Institutional Constraints
Diplomatic pattern and consensus Treaties and conventions International laws International organizations

13 Basic Settings of the Ex- Yugoslavia in the late 1980s
Racial Composition of Yugoslavia: Serbs, Croats, Muslims, Albanians, etc The six republics and the Federation: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Montenegro and Macedonia The ruling structure: long regime founded upon charismatic leaders and narrow-based elite (Romania, Bulgaria, etc., too) Command economy with emphasis on heavy industries

14 The Early 1990s The new election of 1990
The birth of race-based politics The military and economic position of Serbia The dissolution of the Soviet economic system and its impacts on the Yugoslav successor states

15 EC (later EU), the USA and Russia
EC’s basic principle: to preserve the pre-Yugoslavia and to give successor states more democracy EC’s geopolitical considerations (priority to Czechoslovakia, Hungary and Poland) Helmut Sonnenfeldt, top aide of Kissenger, said in 1975, “it ought actually to promote the preservation of the Soviet order.” The Crisis in Iraq Gorbachev’s Fate Britain, Italy and Germany

16 The Outburst in June 1991 Both Slovenia and Croatia declared themselves independent states on June 25, 1991 and defeated the Yugoslavian Liberation Army The Serbs in Croatia (15% of the Croatian population), who were supported by Belgrade, reacted radically to the policy of “a state for the Croats” and war continued While the EC proposed a three-month freeze on implementation of their independence declarations so as to buy time for negotiation, a German-Italian initiative to deploy a Western European Union’s force to separate the combatants was blocked by Britain

17 The Tough Stand of the Croats
The overrated Serbian Army The Peter Carrington Plan of a Federation of Yugoslav sovereign states, which was accepted by Serbia and Montenegro only The arm embargo that aimed at localizing the war hurt Croatia only The siege of Dubrovnik

18 The Inner Contradiction of the Western Camp
Washington’s opposition to a NATO peace-keeping mission The intensification of war The Battle of Vukovar Germany’s initiative in December 1991 that forced the EC to follow Slovenia and Croatia were recognized by the EC on January 15, 1992

19 Powder Keg Bosnia The biggest republic with the most complicated population structure (17.3% Croats, 31.4% Serbs, 43.7% Muslims and 5.5% Yugoslavs) Bosnian Serbs’ connection with Belgrade The Bosnian Muslims and the Muslim world Urban Bosnia vs. rural Bosnia Obstacles to the formation of a multi-cultural civic culture The founding of the Muslim-based SDA (Party of Democratic Action) and the Serb-based SDS (Serbian Democratic Party)

20 The First Confrontation
The Bosnians asked for EC recognition in December 1991 The Bosnian Serb responded by setting up the Serb Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina on December 21, 1991 EC’s cantonization plan in April 1992 and the outbreak of war on April 2, 1992

21 War and War Crime in Bosnia
EC and the USA recognized the Bosnian Republic The Role of Slobodan Milosevic Serbian actions in Bosnia Ethnic Cleansing, “ridding an area of a national group regarded as undesirable in order to create an ethnically homogeneous region.” Mass rape and execution Four weeks after the outbreak of the war, 280,000 people were made refugees

22 Western Response The arrival of the 36,000 UNPROFOR on June 8, 1992
A military or humanitarian issue? Election year in the USA France’s concern over its Muslim community Germany and Britain

23 Refugees: A Problem that upset European Powers
Geneva Conference July 1992 London Conference August 1992 Cyrus Vance and David Owen The USA, the United Nations and the Resolution 827 that founded the International Tribunal for War Crimes Lord Carrington, “Everyone is to blame for what is happening in Bosnia and as soon as we get a ceasefire there will be no need to blame anybody,” “They are all impossible people…all as bad as each other.”

24 1993: A Turning Point Bill Clinton’s presidency Britain’s calculation
The Vance-Owen plan

25 A Futile Plan that intensified Racial Conflicts
Serbs in Bosnia rejected the plan Croats turned against Muslims The tragic fate of Mostar

26 Clinton under Pressure
“The United States should take the lead in seeking United Nations Security Council’s authorization for air strike against those who are attacking the relief effort. The United States should be prepared to lend appropriate military support to that operation.” Clinton’s concerns Criticisms on the one side and the Vietnam syndrome on the other

27 Continuous War and Continuous War Crimes
The Siege of Sarajevo (April 1992 – Feb., 1996) The rise of war gangster, “The Ukrainians are the masters, trading in cigarettes, alcohol, cars, petrol and women…The French specialize in wine, coca-cola, gold and sex.” The war-hardened Bosnian Muslims fought back by organizing the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina The helpless UNPROFOR

28 More Complicated than ever
The first NATO air strike on April 10, 1994 Russia stepped in Bosnian Serbs stood in the way of another round of negotiation The growing difference between Europe and the USA Fortunately, the Muslim world did not involve much

29 The Making of the Dayton Agreement
Continuous military confrontation in Bosnia The tough stand of the new NATO commander Rupert Smith Srebrenica Massacre on July 10, 1995 Bill’s search for new success The Dayton Agreement on December 14,1995


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