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The Yugoslavian Conflict Essay

1174 words - 5 pages

The Yugoslavian ConflictYugoslavia is a country burdened by feuding sides in a war that cannotsoon be resolved. The United Nations are attempting to help the situation,but until the people of Yugoslavia can come to an agreement continued warfareand heartache is inevitable.The problems in Yugoslavia began because the country is separated intotwo distinct parts. The north and west parts of the country were once underthe rule of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and the south and the east werecontrolled by the Ottoman Empire. This had extreme effects on the ethnic,cultural and economic differences between the two sides. The three majorreligions in Yugoslavia were Greek Orthodox, Christianity, Roman Catholicism,and Islam. The population in the north and west parts of the country weremostly Catholic and the further south and east you went the populationbecame more Orthodox.Though these are all important factors contributing to the currentproblems in Yugoslavia, perhaps the most relevant issue is the issue oflanguage. It wouldn't really be proper to say that Serbian, Croatian,Slovenian, and Macedonian are the four major languages because some of thelanguages are so similar they could be considered the same one. For exampleSerbian and Croatian are so similar that government policy was to promotethrough the educational system the idea of a single Serbo-Croatian language.However both the Serbians and the Croatians challenged this idea and wentthrough great pains to identify vocabulary that would highlight thedifferences rather than the similarities.War finally broke out in Yugoslavia on June 25 1991, when Slovenia andCroatia proclaimed their independence and sovereignty, suspending theconstitution of Yugoslavia and federal legislation on their territories.The first thing that Slovenian state did was to take over control of theirborders, removing Yugoslavian border posts and replaced them with SloveniaRepublic posts. Federal authorities responded to this challenge byproclaiming the Slovenian acts illegal and charging that in the Republic ofSlovenia some federal functions, notably customs services and air trafficcontrol, had been forcibly taken over. The taking over of the borders bySlovenian militia was deemed sufficient grounds to call out the YugoslavianNational Army. This order was given from the ministry of defense, who hadno authority to do so. Yugoslavia was without a president at the time andcontrol of the country was given to the supreme commander of the armedforces. The whole affair was organized as military support to the federalpolice and customs personnel. The Slovenians offered strong resistance withtheir territorial defense units, politically organized the withdrawal oftheir representatives from the presidency and the Executive Council ofYugoslavia, and directed a massive propaganda campaign presenting themselvesas victims of brutal Yugoslavian National Army aggression.Croatia also attempted to claim independence, but they had a problemthat the...

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