- Taschenbuch: 96 Seiten
- Verlag: Osprey Publishing (11. November 2004)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 1841768057
- ISBN-13: 978-1841768052
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 17 x 0,5 x 24,7 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 1 Kundenrezension
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 127.633 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
- Komplettes Inhaltsverzeichnis ansehen
The Collapse of Yugoslavia 1991-1999 (Essential Histories, Band 63) (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 11. November 2004
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In 1991, almost overnight, an ethnically diverse region that had enjoyed decades of peaceful coexistence descended into bitter hatred and chaos. Communities fractured along lines of ethnic and religious affiliation and the resulting fighting was deeply personal, resulting in brutality, rape and torture, and ultimately the deaths of more than 250,000 people. This book examines the internal upheavals and their international implications, including the failure of the Vance-Owen plan; the first use of NATO in a combat role and in peace enforcement; and the war in Kosovo, unsanctioned by the UN but prosecuted by NATO forces to prevent the ethnic cleansing of Kosovo.
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
Dr Alastair Finlan teaches in the History Department at the American University in Cairo. Prior to this, he was a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Strategic Studies and International Affairs at Britannia Royal Naval College, where he is still Associate Senior Lecturer. He has also lectured at the Universities of Keele and Plymouth.
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This particular book takes a largely chronological approach, which also happens to be a largely geographical approach, as few particular historical matters contain the domino effect that we can see most notably in the collapse of Yugoslavia. It was Slovenia, distant from Serbian power and close to the burgeoning European Unit, that was the first to separate, with only a short conflict, as Serbia was unable to project much power that far from its core. Croatia had sought to separate but was faced with a lengthy conflict against Serb-supported separatists that took over large territories because of Serbia's military superiority (until the support of the United States for Croatian sovereignty). This was even more the case in Bosnia-Herzogovina, which had a more cosmopolitan identity reflecting its far more divided identity. After years of destruction and immense damage to Bosnia's infrastructure, a fragile peace was enforced through NATO military might that remains to this day. After this, conflict in the former Yugoslavia moved to Kosovo, with its Albanian majority as well as its importance to nationalist Serbs because of its historic importance. The book does an excellent job in discussing the failures of the complex international approach as well as the complex players within the former Yugoslavia, pointing out British failure in particular under John Major's government and a great deal of nuance and even contradiction in many of the governments and nations involved in the effort, as well as the role of Milosevic in using Serb minorities in Croatia and Bosnia and Kosovo as tools for his own political ambitions.
Among the more touching aspects of this particular book are the occasional commentaries on particularly noteworthy people in the long struggle for peace in the former Yugoslavia as it fractured into its various quarreling constituent parts. One of the people discussed in these sections was an articulate and very insightful young lady from Sarajevo, Zlata Filipovic, whose diary gave her, her insights as a humane and intelligent young lady, and the plight of her suffering people some much needed attention, allowing her and her family to escape the horrors of that besieged city and a new life in Paris. Not everyone got to escape, but it is sad when ordinary people possess great insight but political leaders are mired in moral cowardice dealing with corrupt criminals and violent murderers, unable to tap into that wisdom because they only like dealing with other people of their kind. The lengthy humanitarian crisis in the former Yugoslavia is just one example of many where this lack of insight and moral courage on the part of political leaders is apparent, and it is a very valid one in examining the contemporary moral failures when it comes to treating criminals and terrorists like responsible parties for international dialogue and neglecting the plight of the common people whose lives they harm because of their evil and folly. As the author points out sadly, the lessons of Yugoslavia's collapse appear not to have been learned or remembered well.
Responding to another reader here, the maps are okay but very basic; better ones are readily available on-line. But they are the best part of this particular book.
Bottom line: if you want to understand this war better--look for other accounts: Misha Glenny or Laura Silber both wrote much more comprehensive and readible accounts that are available at the same price or cheaper--I highly recommend those as alternatives.
(A more ellaborate study of the Yugoslavia war is "Yugoslavia: Death of a Nation" written by BBC journalists and also sold by amazon.com)
I am not familiar with these series (Essential Histories) but it appears as though this is what they are intended to be, very succint works, just a roadmap to help the reader gather further knowledge elsewhere (but don't expect to find a big Bibliography here).
So, here's what I consider the strenghts of this book:
* its fine illustrations
* its elegant presentation (printed on very nice, 'shiny' paper)
* I also liked the way they present the 'participants' of the conflict (page 19). This is an interesting approach that I don't remember to have seen elsewhere, as they cite over 14 involved parties: other than Serbian, Croatians and Bosnians, there was the 'international community', international and military organisations that directly or indirectly had a saying in the outcome of the war.
Again, this presentation of the warring sides is interesting, and reminds me also of management theories about the numerous 'publics' or 'clients' that a corporation has to deal with on a daily basis (also known as 'interested parties' that are affected in some or another way by the business of a corporation, and which explains, in part, the profession of public relations).
To summarise, I recommend this book as a quick reference guide for the Yugoslavian wars, a roadmap for the beginner. (Yet I still consider 'Death of a nation' a much better introduction to the subject).
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