Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Karadzic arrested

Thank god for that. Radovan Karadzic was one of the major Serbian criminals of the three way civil war that happened in Bosnia-Herzegovinia in the early '90s. Unlike the Kosovo war, this one wasn't manufactured and overstated. The Serbians saw themselves as defending against the Muslim hordes on the one side and against decadent Catholic Croatians on the other, with Orthodoxy representing to them decent and normal civilization. Plus an extreme Slavophilism that tied the Orthodox church in Serbia with ethnic pride.

The trigger for the three way war in Bosnia and for the general civil wars of that time was a decision by the United States and Germany to recognize Croatia as an independent state at a time when all of Yugoslavia minus Slovenia was still a single, albeit federated, entity. Slobodan Milosevic was in place, but the person who cast the first stone was Franjo Tudjman of Croatia, who implemented a policy declaring that the only people who would be recognized as citizens in independent Croatia were those who were Catholic and who primarily spoke Croatian. Because there was a large Serbian population in Croatia, who may like many others have considered themselves Yugoslavs first and Serbians second, this caused problems. They started to expel Serbians and Serbians in Serbia, lead by Milosevic, responded with equally heavy handed tactics and soon the civil war spilled over into Bosnia, with Croatians and Serbians both trying to seize territory and to extend their reach while expelling Bosnians and marginalizing Bosnian control over the country.

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