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By Francine Friedman

First released in 2007. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Additional resources for Bosnia and Herzegovina: A Polity on the Brink (Postcommunist States and Nations)

Sample text

For example, the Bosnian LCY (LCBiH), created in 1949, was initially dominated by Bosnian Serbs because the Croat and Muslim areas of western Herzegovina had been strongly influenced by the Ustasˇe and thus were suspect. 83 Workers’ self-management in internal politics was matched on the international scene by Yugoslavia’s unique foreign policy. After the shock of the Cominform Resolution, the West extended its protection against Soviet aggression to Yugoslavia and assisted it to prosper economically through trade and aid relations.

The Cˇ etniks, nationalistic Serbian guerrilla units, were composed mainly of the remnants of the royal Yugoslav military. Led by a general staff colonel, Drazˇa Mihailovic´, they conceived of their role as a force that would be ready to seize political power and reinstate the royal government when the fascists withdrew. 72 The Partisans, on the other hand, were a multinational force headed by communist leader Josip Broz Tito. 73 The Partisans actively engaged the invaders. They also fought against the Cˇ etniks and the Ustasˇe for the right to choose the postwar form of Yugoslavia.

The Titoist motto of “Brotherhood and Unity” was meant to sweep all those issues away, perhaps even to negate the previous separate histories of the various Yugoslav areas in an attempt to bind the South Slavs together in a communist state. Authoritarian policies would prevent these issues from arising again. The communists imposed their model on a warweary country, and popular desires were not consulted. The lack of popular consensus on the structure and identity of postwar Yugoslavia would later erupt into inter-ethnic tensions.

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