Yugoslavia- despair?

glevy at acnet.pratt.edu glevy at acnet.pratt.edu
Mon Jul 31 21:26:57 MDT 1995

Han has written some very interesting comments on Yugoslavia and related=20
issues.  Some comments:

> I would like to ask some questions on the debate about Yugoslavia?
> >How come if we discuss yuguslavia we gorget everything about class posit=
> If we really want to knouw what is going one over there we have to study =
> interests of each of te paticipants in this war.  And not in the least th=
> interests of Germany (The New European Comunity), The USA and russia.

We discussed the above questions in recent days.  You might be able to=20
get copies of previous posts on this thread, but don't ask me how as I'm=20
not exactly sure.

> Did not war start in Yugoslavia the day Germany declared the Croatian poe=
> have the right off sefdetermination?  Did not we here this german excuse
> about 50 years ago, and eaven more in 1914?
> How come we see the Neo Nazi's ruling in Croatia.
> Yugoslavia is for the Germans the road to Turkey (geografically), it was =
in 1914
> in 1940 and in 1995.
> Wich are the intrest of Germany and the 4=B0Reich (E.C.) in Yugoslavia?

It is true that what happened during WW2 is of relevance for=20
understanding the nationalist tensions between Croatia and Serbia.  It is=
a fact, for instance, that many Croatians collaborated with the Nazis and=
assisted in the mass killings of Serbians by the Nazis.  Following the=20
war and with the establishment of Yugoslavia, Tito attempted to hold=20
together the many separate nationalities that composed the Yugoslavian=20
republic by making a number of accomodations.  One such decision of=20
relevance was the decision not to attempt to bring all those who were=20
responsible for war crimes to justice.  Since the Croatian Nazi=20
collaborators were never tried, many Serbians have felt that the death of=
their people had not been avenged.  Also, Tito divided Yugoslavia into=20
different provinces which many Serbians felt took land away from what=20
they considered historically to be part of Serbia, and gave it to other=20
provinces.   Consequently, this explains somewhat the popular desire for=20
more land in  an independent Serbia and, therefore, the fighting over=20

I don't think I agree with the idea that the civil war in Yugoslavia was=20
engineered or initiated by the German government.  I believe, given the=20
long history of nationalist rivalry in this region, that there was bound=20
to be conflict among those nations about where the boundaries should be=20
drawn.  A vital factor here is the size and composition of national=20
minorities in each of these areas.  It is not coincidental that the=20
fighting in Bosnia has largely been led by the Serbian minority in Bosnia=
since they have a lot to lose in terms of power if "their" areas become=20
part of Bosnia.
> Is ther really any ntion who wants this ware to be stopped.  Maybe some a=
> nation who really have som sipathi for the Moslim poeple who are slougter=
> in the name of the christia God (Serbia & croatia).=20
> But I thin that neither the USA, Neither the 4=B0reich want this war to b=
> stopped.  It is a battleground on wich they can play with te latest
> technology's.  They can check out far they can take public opinion, how m=
> days can U.N. soldiers be taken as hostages befor public opinian reacts.
> For the first hostages ther was an emediat reaction, but today,...??=20
> Wich High Tech diplomatic trick can we use.
> ...

I think that the US, French, and British (at least) governments want this=
war to be ended.  What they don't want to do is risk their own military=20
forces in an area that has little meaning for them now in terms of=20
wealth-creating ability.  They want the war to end but lack the incentive=
and the will to end the war.
> >The war in yugoslavia is a war between Imperialist countrie's : USA,
> 4=B0Reich, Russia.  In this ware there is no side to choose.  Yes the sid=
e of
> those who aren not blinded by Nationalism or Chritian & Moslim Fundamenta=
lism. =20
> We have to demand our government to stop the UN intervention, ther can't =
> any intervention of an Imperialist state with the goal to maintain Peace.

If this were an imperialist war, then the imperialist powers wouldn't be=20
so indifferent to its outcome. I believe that it is *primarily* a=20
nationalist war(s) in which each of the imperialist powers have a=20
essentially secondary role. Both Germany and Russia do have important=20
political and economic interests in the region, and that explains to some=
degree their policy on the wars. Yet, Germany and Russia (or the US and=20
the UK) did not start the war or fight the war themselves.  I believe=20
that your understanding of the was as imperialist rests on your previous=20
understanding of the role of German imperialism (which I disagree with).

Should there be UN intervention?  On principle, I am normally opposed to=20
such intervention.  But, there are exceptions to most rules.  If, for=20
instance, massive bombing of Serbian targets can get the Serbia=20
government to pull back its forces and leave the "safe havens" alone,=20
then I think I'd favor that at this point.  To simply call for peace=20
would allow the genocide to continue.=20

> If Moslims have a place in the global human race?
> This is a pretty strange question.  I ame neither a Moslim a Jew a
> Christian, I cinsider myself being an Athe=EFst.
> My girlfriend's mother is Jewich, but my girlfriend does not consider
> herseld being an Jew.  being a Jew is being a member of religious comunit=
> We should have respect for all religions and we should fight all relegion=
s. =20
> In the name of god we wher fighting against Irak.  In the name of god whe=
> fighting German soldiers.  In the name of god are fighting zionist
> soldier's, in the name of god are fighting Serbes,...
> Marx once said :"Relegion is a drug (Opium) for the poeple.

I very much disagree with the above formulation.  Although I am an=20
atheist, I am also Jewish.  Jews are a people and not merely followers of=
a religion -- Judaism.  There is a long tradition of secular thought=20
amongst Jewish people in the modern era  (from the 19th thru the 20th=20
Centuries).  Jewish people themselves do not consider religious belief to=
be the defining characteristic in terms of whether one is considered=20
Jewish.  I have always been told that, whether I am an atheist or an=20
Orthodox Jew, I will be forever counted as being Jewish.

The expression "we should fight against all religions", is a formulation=20
that I disagree with.  I agree, as an atheist, that religion is "the=20
opiate of the masses."  Yet, there are other opiates as well such as=20
television and sports.  How should we fight against those opiates?

Yes, many wars are waged by religious forces, although, frequently there=20
are larger economic and social forces that give rise to these conflicts. =
We have to understand all of the forces that cause these wars if we are=20
to understand the wars themselves.

 > Once again sorry for my language.
> My native language is not English, if I use the wrong words, i'm sorry.=
There is nothing wrong with your English. We all understood your=20
meaning.  Keep writing.

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