1992 and 1993 will be remembered as the years in which a European country was destroyed. It was a land with a political and cultural history unlike any other, where the great religions and powers had overlapped and combined - Rome, Charlemagne, the Ottomans and the Austro-Hungarians. Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Judaism and Islam. But ...
1992 and 1993 will be remembered as the years in which a European country was destroyed. It was a land with a political and cultural history unlike any other, where the great religions and powers had overlapped and combined - Rome, Charlemagne, the Ottomans and the Austro-Hungarians. Roman Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Judaism and Islam. But this rich past has become shrouded in a fog of ignorance and misinformation. In this book, Balkan specialist and political commentator Noel Malcolm elucidates the myths and historical fallacies that have dominated not only media coverage of the war, but also, more shockingly, the words and actions of Western statesmen. In particular, he explodes the claim that the war was the inevitable consequence of "ancient ethnic hatreds" and shows that the causes of Bosnia's destruction came from outside itself - first through the strategy of the Serbian leadership, and then through the fatal miscomprehension and interference of Western politicians.
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Publishers Weekly, 1994-07-25 To explain the origins of the current conflict in Bosnia, Malcolm reaches back to Turkish occupation, Austro-Hungarian rule, both world wars and the era of Stalinist oppression under Toti. He contends that ``ethnic cleansing'' is not a by-product of the current war but a central element in the Serbian goal of creating homogeneous Serb enclaves that eventually will join together in a Greater Serbia. Malcolm condemns Western interference, singling out politicians and diplomats who attempt to suppress the war's symptoms instead of treating its causes. He argues persuasively that the United Nations-imposed arms embargo against Bosnia opened the way to that nation's destruction, and that the vaunted Vance-Owen peace plan was only slightly less disastrous. It led to a genuine Bosnian civil war, ruining the only effective barrier against the Serbs, the Croat-Muslim alliance. Political columnist for London's Daily Spectator, Malcolm has covered the Balkans for 15 years. (Sept.)
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