Broken Bonds: Yugoslavia's Disintegration and Balkan Politics,

Lenard J. Cohen, Author
Lenard J. Cohen, Author Westview Press $19.95 (299p) ISBN 978-0-8133-1854-7
Reviewed on: 05/31/1993
Release date: 06/01/1993
Hardcover - 440 pages - 978-0-8133-8030-8
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Though somewhat academic, this detailed, careful analysis should be useful to serious students of the area. Cohen ( Political Cohesion in A Fragile Mosaic: The Yugoslav Experience ) begins in the 19th century, tracing Yugoslav nationalism before a state was formed. He describes the ``ambiguous legacy'' of Tito's communist nationalism, then subtly analyzes the debate over post-Tito reform strategies. Drawing on many Yugoslav sources, especially opinion polls, he shows the growth of ethnic nationalism in the 1990s. Unilateral independence decisions by Slovenia and Croatia in 1991, aided by recognition from Europe, fueled the country's dissolution; Western nations, mistakenly believing it would defuse tension, recognized Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1992. Though Cohen cites the long history of ethnic animosity and the failures of communism as factors contributing to violence, his study emphasizes how political leaders have repeatedly failed to reach compromises. Pessimistic about future inter-ethnic tolerance, as well as international influence on peace, Cohen suggests that the new states from the former Yugoslavia must produce more enlightened leaders. Photos not seen by PW. History Book Club alternate. (July)
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