Taking into account the history of Yugoslavia that you have studied do you feel that lasting peace is possibly in the independent states of former Yugoslavia? Yugoslavia has a very complicated history, there was peace throughout Yugoslavia up until the 1980’s when conflict started to arise, and this was shortly after Tito died as they no longer had an obvious leader. There had always been ethnic tension underneath the peace but now that the recent conflicts have been resolved we have to think if peace is likely to carry on.
Peace seems more likely in different countries due to various reasons. I think that there is likely to be lasting peace in Croatia, this is for a number of reasons . They have recently built up a strong tourism trade after the Croatian war had ended , and this brings in a lot of money and jobs to the surrounding area’s. It also helps to make the area prosperous and they would not be able to keep the tourism trade running if conflict was to arise. Croatia along with many other countries wants to be in the EU.
This also helps the likelihood of peace because to join the EU you have to follow a number of rules, you have to be a democratic county that means that everyone has to have a say in government, this is an example of why peace would last as there would be no ethnic tension because everyone has a say in what goes on in there country. You have to respect the law and human rights and protect minority groups, this is good because yet again it will help bring down ethnic tension, you also have to have a strong economy and if there is a conflict in Croatia then they are not going to have a strong economy.
You also have to hand over war criminals, and Croatia has started to hand over some of there war criminals, this makes it more likely that they will get into the EU. Joining the EU has many benefits for countries they will have increased trade, there value of land will increase and they will have protection of the EU, these are all good benefits and well worth it. Another reason for peace to stay in Croatia is that it is predominantly Croat, which means there is not going to be a lot of ethnic tension if any; therefore this will help keep the peace. I think that there is likely to be lasting peace in Slovenia as well.
This is due to the fact that it has a well developed tourism trade in the skiing industry. This provides money and jobs for surrounding area’s and people. If there was going to be conflict in this area then there tourism trade would start to decline. The ethnic tension is going to be less in Slovenia due to the fact that there are mainly Slovenians, this is another sign that peace can last. Slovenia does not need to try and join the EU as it has already been accepted into it. Causing conflict and ethnic tension would jeopardize there place in the EU and they would not want to do that.
They also have good trading partners and if there was another conflict then this would not carry on. I think there is a chance that Montenegro can carry on with lasting peace , but it is not as high as the previous countries. They gained independence in 2006 , this can go either way. They will not want to be involved in a conflict so soon after gaining independence because they may lose there independence , but because they are now independent they may start bossing the minority around and this could cause ethnic tension in Montenegro.
They are also applying to be a member in the EU, they are a potential candidate where as Croatia is already a candidate. Therefore you would presume that they would not want any ethnic tension that could build up to a conflict as they want to be in the EU , however they are suffering huge economic problems which could cause ethnic tension because the land will not be doing as well as some other places causing jealously. I think there is likely to be lasting peace in Macedonia because they became an independent country in 1991, and again like most of the other countries wants to join the EU.
It is a candidate like Croatia that means that there case is being looked at. There is a 25% Albanian population which could cause ethnic tension, if they are not treated right but Macedonia has started to give them more rights and has started to introduce some democratic factors , this is going to keep peace because if they are taking into account other ethnic groups then there is not likely to be ethnic tension which will cause conflicts , also as they are a candidate for the EU they will not want to jeopardize that.
There is a possibility that peace can last in Bosnia, it could go either way because Bosnia wants to become a member of the EU, therefore It needs to stay peaceful other whys they will not have any chance. They are a potential candidate for the EU, this is due to the fact that they have many ethnic and economic problems , but this could be a chance for peace because they would want to correct there economic and ethnic problems so that they can gain the benefits from being in the EU.
However, Bosnia feels as if it was put under pressure by powerful countries such as the United States to sign the Dayton agreement so that there was no longer a war and to try and keep the war crimes down, therefore they are living in a forced peace. The president of the Bosnian Serb parliament felt that the agreement did not even meet the minimum of there interests.
We can see that there were problems even after that agreement was signed, in a town called Brcko. Brcko straddles land and water routes between central Europe and the Balkans, the mainly Muslim population was once purged by Serbs and the question of its future almost destroyed the Dayton agreement. Both sides threatened to go to war over the town.
There are many other problems as well which cause bad feeling in Bosnia , an example of a problem would be the issues to do with the mass murders of civilians and the attempts to put people of guilty of serious war crimes on trial , for instance one of the worse incidents that took place in the town of Srebrenica , before the Bosnian war the town was a Muslim town with a big population , but whilst the fighting was going on the town surrendered , over half of the Muslim men tried to get away from the Bosnian Serbs army by marching to the area’s held by Bosnians own government , the other half left behind were held in a prisoner of war camp , many thousands of people were never seen again.
This is going to cause a lot of ethnic tension because innocent civilians were murdered after they had surrendered Therefore I do not think that it is likely there is going to be lasting peace in Bosnia. I don’t think there will be lasting peace in Kosovo, because Serbia wants to maintain the control is has over Kosovo because it has had control for so many years that it does not want to give it up now and Russia is backing up Serbia and Russia is a very important figure in the UN. This is not good as it will create more tension between Kosovo and Serbia , as it is Serbia that is stopping Kosovo from having any power or independence at all The war before hand as we already know was stopped in a forced peace so the problems are still there as Kosovo still have a strong resentment to Serbians for the way the were treated throughout the war.
This resentment is not going to be subside if they are still under control, I think there is one reason for peace to continue apart from the fact they are more determined than ever is because there is a peace making group in Kosovo called K4 making sure that riots are not breaking out, this will help keep conflict down, however if K4 was not presence then conflict is very likely to arise. Although Serbia is not willing to give up Kosovo yet there is the strong possibly that one day it might because they also would like to join the EU, and because of the rules that are in place, they would not be able to join the EU if they are still controlling a country that does not want to be controlled.
Many war crimes have been uncovered in the period since the end of the war, and this has only reinforced bitterness between different ethnic groups, during the conflict at least 4,000 Kosovo Albania civilians have been killed and a further 100, 00 men of military have disappeared. There was many war crimes carried out in Kosovo during the conflict, something that is very crucial to the possibility of lasting peace is the issue that several key figures from the periods of conflict are still want for alleged war crimes , and they are still at large. Slobodan Milosevic the ex-Serbian president , was being bought to justice when he died there was quite a lot of hard feelings towards this as some believed he had managed to get the easy way out , many of the Serbs think that this is better as they do not believed justice would have been fair if he had survived.
There is still a lot of resentment due to the fact that to of the main alleged war criminals are on the lose , this is likely to cause conflict unless they are caught and bought to justice because many believed that the Serbia know full well where they are but do not want to give information on there whereabouts. In conclusion I think that the possibility of peace in Yugoslavia is unlikely however I think some countries may be able to keep peace but there is to many larger problems in other area’s. I think Croatia will be able to keep peace as joining the EU is a very important matter to them , therefore they would not want to jeopardize there case , I think this is the same in many of the other countries , for instance Macedonia has only just become an independent country , and again they want to join the EU , they are also started to listen to the view of different ethnic groups which is going to keep the peace.
I do not believed that there can be peace in Bosnia because the Dayton agreement which has kept the peace so far was only signed due to the forcefulness of the other countries such as the united states , I also don’t believed that there can be peace in Kosovo or Serbia because there is to much resentment due to the fact that Serbia will not give up the control of Kosovo , however I think that if the war criminals are captured and bought to justice then there is going to more possibly of peace between the two countries but unless that happens soon then I don’t think there is any chance that there will be peace in Kosovo or Serbia , so altogether I think that there will be some sort of conflict between the different ethnic groups in Yugoslavia.