New PDF release: Bosnia and Herzegovina: A Polity on the Brink (Postcommunist

By Francine Friedman

ISBN-10: 0415274354

ISBN-13: 9780415274357

First released in 2007. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Additional info for Bosnia and Herzegovina: A Polity on the Brink (Postcommunist States and Nations)

Example text

87 The problem was, however, that the republics, again with a single exception (Slovenia), also housed large “minorities,” which opened up the painful subject of ethnic/territorial re-delineation within republics. With so many communities that were mixed ethnically, there were many people with minority status within Yugoslavia, depending on their place of residence. But some people resented being a minority. 89 Not only were citizens expected to identify themselves ethnically for census purposes, but political and economic decisions, more and more centered in the republics, were also taken on the basis of what was good for the ethnic group, not necessarily the federation as a whole.

Tito understood that Yugoslavia’s only chance for independence during the cold war, where every territory was liable to become a reason for Soviet–American conflict, was to maintain its self-reliance and not to cleave too closely to either alliance, while receiving support and largesse from both. To that end, and particularly as a result of the Warsaw Pact intervention in Czechoslovakia in 1968, he created a system of local civilian militias. These territorial defense forces would serve as autonomous military units to resist invasion in guerrilla fashion if the federal armed forces succumbed to superior invasive militaries.

For them, power and legitimacy was lodged, not in all citizens of a state but only in a subgroup of the state defined by ethnic identity or religion, or by the amalgamation of the two. 123 They intended to create impossible geographical versions of the ideologies by attempting to fashion homogeneous nationstates out of hopelessly heterogeneous regions. 124 Guarantees and procedures for human rights and free debate about the future of Yugoslavia to turn it into a stable, pluralistic democracy 30 THE ROOTS OF CONFLICT were sacrificed for political gain.

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Bosnia and Herzegovina: A Polity on the Brink (Postcommunist States and Nations) by Francine Friedman

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