Yugoslavia -Reply

Mon Jul 31 18:33:48 MDT 1995

Louis, thanks for your comments on Yugoslavia, that is very much the
kind of economic analysis I was looking for, I think I even suggested
or asked for it on this list a while back.  It goes well with what
little I know too.  For instance, Croatia had not only historically
included/controlled the Dalmation coast of the Adriatic, but it was
also much more industrially developed than the rest of the country.
I think Croatia was where all the Yugos were made, for instance.
Therefore, they were in effect subsidizing the rest of the country,
and many Croatians didn't like it.  I guess the party there wanted to
keep the money under their own control, instead of sending it in to
national headquarters.  But I also wonder how such disparities of
investment came about to begin with.

Another on-going source of tension was the fact that the government
of Yugoslavia was largely seen [prob. correctly] as the rule of
Serbians over the other 6-8 ethnicities in the country.  Serbs
were/are not trusted to treat all ethnicities or regions evenly.

I learned part of this because I am in a folk-dance club and a
performing group which preserves, presents and promotes the knowledge
of folk-arts, mainly those of eastern Europe.  Although one of our
favorite regions or styles has been Croatian for about 20 years, we
found out that many of the Croat-Americans in Utah were missing from
our audience because of the use of the word Yugoslavia.  We also ran
an annual festival called Utah-slavia, which is a pan-slavic
festival, but it sounds like Yugoslavia, and it is now changed to
"the slavic festival" because of it.  Croats here at least clearly
identified "Yugoslavia" with "Serbian", and they told us so.

But, to the war, I for one do not call for intervention, for many of
the good reasons pointed out on this list, but also because, do not
forget **intervention that is already occurring is part of the
problem itself.**  I refer of course to the arms embargo, and the
uselessness of the so-called safe havens, which appear to be totally

It's a tough call to make, but lately I favor the US to unilaterally
lift the arms embargo, since that is probably the best thing that the
US can do now.  Also, I agree with the rest of Louis' suggestions.


>>> Louis N Proyect <lnp3 at columbia.edu>  7/23/95, 03:13pm >>>
In that context, I believe that it is a mistake to call upon
imperialist  troops to intervene. When people of conscience,
including people on  this list, call upon "the world" to intervene,
we can fall into the trap of  concealing the class nature of the
various governments that make up  "the world". These governments are
based on capitalist rule and never  act in way contrary to the
particular interests of their own national  bourgeoisie.
As comrade Nello points out, we should be solidarizing ourselves with
 progressive and antiwar forces in the former Yugoslavia. I had the
opportunity to meet Yugoslavian radicals in the 1960's around the
time of the student struggles in Belgrade for "a Red University" and
can attest to the genuinely internationalist and socialist character
of  the opposition.

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