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Old 02-20-2008, 07:22 AM
 
Location: in my imagination
12,171 posts, read 19,738,099 times
Reputation: 8609

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Im not a stupid person,but it really is confusing to me.With Kosovo gaining independance I was trying to understand just who and what everbody is?

What is Kosovo?
What is Croatia?
What is Serbia?
Who are the KLA?
Who are the Serbs?
Who are the Bosnians?

Who is fighting who and what religion are each of them?

Yugoslavia use to be a combined country right?

Seriously,it's confusing to me.

What does Albania have to do with it?
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Old 02-20-2008, 08:26 AM
 
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 23,200,662 times
Reputation: 20115
You don't ask for much then! One of the most complex geo-political topic of the last few hundreds years !

I won't try to explain in my own words, as I am not an expert and even the people concerned themselves seem pretty confused. I have friends from different regions and they seem none the wiser either.

It all started with the Ottoman Empire then the Hapsburg came into it and rising Nationalism, two world wars and various seemingly endless conflicts and political squabbles have shaped the region into one big confusing mass of countries, ethnic groups and religious factions.

Think of it as one of the most varied ethnic mix in Europe , all with different beliefs, national identities and rivalries and historical scores to settle. Add a bit of very bad foreign policies from some of the strongest players in European history and you have it !

The sites below are quite good.

BBC NEWS | History File | Yugoslavia & The Balkans | 1900 - 1998
Twenty-Five Lectures on Modern Balkan History (http://www.lib.msu.edu/sowards/balkan/ - broken link)
The principles of Ottoman rule in the Balkans (http://www.lib.msu.edu/sowards/balkan/lecture3.html - broken link)

Sorry that's the best I can do ! Good luck.
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Old 02-20-2008, 08:40 AM
 
Location: Who knows
2,355 posts, read 2,073,208 times
Reputation: 1197
I took a class in this very subject but still couldn't explain everything without having a tangent go off here and there...maybe you should pick up a few books on the subject? Just a suggestion.

Good links Mooseketeer.
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Old 02-20-2008, 09:06 AM
 
4,833 posts, read 5,794,619 times
Reputation: 2428
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mooseketeer View Post
You don't ask for much then! One of the most complex geo-political topic of the last few hundreds years !

I won't try to explain in my own words, as I am not an expert and even the people concerned themselves seem pretty confused. I have friends from different regions and they seem none the wiser either.

It all started with the Ottoman Empire then the Hapsburg came into it and rising Nationalism, two world wars and various seemingly endless conflicts and political squabbles have shaped the region into one big confusing mass of countries, ethnic groups and religious factions.

Think of it as one of the most varied ethnic mix in Europe , all with different beliefs, national identities and rivalries and historical scores to settle. Add a bit of very bad foreign policies from some of the strongest players in European history and you have it !

The sites below are quite good.

BBC NEWS | History File | Yugoslavia & The Balkans | 1900 - 1998
Twenty-Five Lectures on Modern Balkan History (http://www.lib.msu.edu/sowards/balkan/ - broken link)
The principles of Ottoman rule in the Balkans (http://www.lib.msu.edu/sowards/balkan/lecture3.html - broken link)

Sorry that's the best I can do ! Good luck.
Excellent links moosketeer...and I would also suggest that those interested in Tha Balkans read about the Genocide of The Armenians by The Ottoman

Turks: Armenia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Armenia is the only Christian country in the near/middle east and has had a similar sad past shared only by The Jews.
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Old 02-20-2008, 09:23 AM
 
Location: Oxford, England
13,036 posts, read 23,200,662 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UncleBatz View Post
Excellent links moosketeer...and I would also suggest that those interested in Tha Balkans read about the Genocide of The Armenians by The Ottoman

Turks: Armenia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Armenia is the only Christian country in the near/middle east and has had a similar sad past shared only by The Jews.
Thanks for the link UncleBatz!

The Armenian genocide will forever be on of Europe's most shameful chapter and yet so many people are blissfully ignorant of it. And so many people still even refuse to accept it. It's really appalling.

I had quite a few Armenian friends at school in France ( a lot of Armenian people took refuge in France in 1915 and in the mid 20s ( including Charles Aznavour's family) and I heard such terrible stories.

I was lucky to visit over 20 years ago and I loved it. Great food, lovely people and some wonderful historical sites too.

I wish this beautiful country and its people the best future.


I would recommend this book if anyone is interested in the Armenian Genocide :

The History of the Armenian Genocide: Ethnic Conflict from the Balkans to Anatolia to the Caucasus by Vahakn N. Dadrian

And this for an overview of the Balkans :

The Balkans, 1804-1999: Nationalism, War and the Great Powers by Misha Glenny
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Old 02-20-2008, 09:24 AM
 
Location: South Bay Native
14,363 posts, read 24,053,484 times
Reputation: 27070
Here are some links to learn more about some of the questions you posed.

Croatia Myth&Reality: Croatia and the Croatians (http://wap.macedonia.org/myth/croatians.html - broken link)
The Black Hand
Yugoblunder - What Foreign Policy | Albanian American Civic League
Milosevic and Operation Horseshoe | World news | The Observer
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Old 02-20-2008, 11:07 AM
 
1,763 posts, read 5,648,616 times
Reputation: 823
Default in a nutshell

Quote:
Originally Posted by lionking View Post

What is Kosovo?
What is Croatia?
What is Serbia?
Who are the KLA?
Who are the Serbs?
Who are the Bosnians?
What is Kosovo? - Essentially 90% Albanian. Delusioned, romantic Serbs claim it's their homeland.

What is Croatia? - Home of Roman Catholic Slavs, speak Serbo-Croatian, don't like Serbs.

What is Serbia? - Land of the Serbs.

Who are the KLA? - Kosovo Albanians fighting for their independence.

Who are the Serbs? - Orthodox Slavs, speak Serbo-Croatian. Dislike anyone they can't rule over, are a patron-state of Russia.

Who are the Bosnians? - Historically persecuted, Muslim Slavs.
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Old 02-20-2008, 12:09 PM
 
Location: South Bay Native
14,363 posts, read 24,053,484 times
Reputation: 27070
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tim Rankin View Post
What is Kosovo? - Essentially 90% Albanian. Delusioned, romantic Serbs claim it's their homeland.

What is Croatia? - Home of Roman Catholic Slavs, speak Serbo-Croatian, don't like Serbs.

What is Serbia? - Land of the Serbs.

Who are the KLA? - Kosovo Albanians fighting for their independence.

Who are the Serbs? - Orthodox Slavs, speak Serbo-Croatian. Dislike anyone they can't rule over, are a patron-state of Russia.

Who are the Bosnians? - Historically persecuted, Muslim Slavs.
That is possibly the most accurate "Cliffs Notes" explanation I have yet seen. Bravo and + points for you!
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Old 02-20-2008, 02:06 PM
 
Location: Tolland County- Northeastern CT
4,459 posts, read 7,047,741 times
Reputation: 1237
The Balkans include all of what was the former Yugoslavia- Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia, etc
plus Albania, Bulgaria and Romania.
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Old 02-21-2008, 01:24 PM
 
Location: The Heart of Dixie
9,352 posts, read 13,956,188 times
Reputation: 6244
So the Bosnian Muslims are also a Slavic ethnicity and not an Islamic one? I usually associate Islamic ethnicities as Arabics, Persians, Turks, Pakistnais, etc.
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