Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

The choices French diplomacy made

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • The choices French diplomacy made

    An essay from Institut Hayek Institute:

    The choices French diplomacy made


    Françoise Thom
    Translated by Douglas Gillison
    French original: "Les choix de la diplomatie française"
    (Institut Hayek Institute, 2003/05/06)

    The choices French diplomacy made, by Françoise Thom*

    France has taken being the land of the consensus too far. In no area is this consensus more visible than that of foreign policy. Yet, in no area should the choices made by French officials be subjected to greater scrutiny and debate, given their implications and probable consequences for the evolution of the country and for that of Europe.

    Unfortunately, this debate is entirely impossible for the French are daily under fire from a press cemented together by Gallic leftism. They instinctively feel the dangers to which they are exposed by the attitudes that the Chirac-Villepin duo has imposed on French diplomacy. They are ill at ease before the recent upheavals in international order and by France’s internal evolution but their elected officials, intimidated by the monolithic thinking percolated through programs and articles, only rarely give voice to the deaf anxieties experienced by France’s lesser castes.

    Of what has been done, nothing can be repaired. But this is no reason to persist in our forward flight. The page is turning on the Iraq crisis. The moment has come to pause and take stock of our recent actions.

    To evaluate a foreign policy, one must ask oneself two questions. The first is whether this policy favors the realization of the desired objectives. The second consists in asking whether those objectives correspond to the real interest of the nation.

    The prime objective of French diplomacy is the unconditional containment of the United States.

    Whatever the Americans do, France feels it is absolutely necessary to put a stick between their spokes. The neo-Gaulists think that France will attain a role worthy of itself in the international scene if it takes the lead in opposition to the American “hyper-power.”

    Chriac’s France is European because it views Europe as a rival pillar to the United States and it easily imagines itself in an hegemonic position in this anti-American Europe.

    Chirac’s France champions the UN, which general de Gaulle once called a “contraption,” because it thinks its seat on the Security Council is a privileged instrument for the containment of the United States while bestowing a certain gravity upon France in the international community, to which neither its economic successes nor its cultural importance permit it to lay claim.

    And therefore the goals that Chirac’s foreign policy has set for itself are the struggle against American unilateralism, the transformation of the Common Foreign and Security Policy from a statement of intentions to an institutional reality and the elevation of France to the status of a power whose voice is heard on the global stage.

    In every one of these aims, France has obtained results that are the opposite of those it had been pursuing.

    French obstructionism in the United Nations, the tour of 14 capitals taken by the minister of foreign affairs in the hope of preventing the use of force against Saddam, taken together with less recent snubs, such as Libya’s election to the presidency of the Human Rights Commission, further accentuated the already pronounced penchant of the American administration for unilateralism. More than ever, the United States are losing interest in the UN. Yet past experience shows that without American power, the UN is only a formal entity. So the French attitude has sabotaged the United Nations, while Paris claimed to be strengthening it.

    Furthermore, stalwart French efforts to undermine NATO seem to have borne fruit after the Franco-German refusal of to give the alliance’s military assistance to Turkey. Yet again, French behavior succeeded only in heightening the Bush administration’s already marked tendency toward unilateralism.

    Now let’s examine the fruits of Chirac’s diplomacy in Europe.

    In reading an account of the numerous debates that animated the the European convention, one gets the impression that Europeans are united on one point only: the necessity to contain France’s ambitions.

    Paris has harbored the delusion that it is resurrecting the Franco-German duo. One has only to read the German press to realize that on the other side of the Rhine we are much despised for having exploited a difficult moment for Germany, the isolation in which Berlin found itself following an electoral campaign that resorted to anti-Americanism. Germany is frightened by French extravagance.

    “No one really knows what is pushing Chirac to oppose the United States to such a degree. This can only worry us. It is a frightening situation,” Michael Glos said recently. He is a member of parliament from the CSU. (For the German attitude, see the article by Thibaut de Champris in Le Figaro of 28 March 2003).

    Germany is struggling to persuade Washington that it does not share the French vision of a Europe opposed to the United States. When the CDU returns to power, France will pay the bill for the concessions it exacted last autumn.

    The rebirth of the Franco-German duo has also aroused grave doubts among the nations of central and eastern Europe who are candidate nations for European enlargement and who, since the Nice summit, had been counting on Germany to counterbalance Paris’ hegemonic tendencies: these apprehensions were aggravated yet again by the crude diatribes of the French president, leaving it to be understood that the price of admission to the EU was total submission to the French view of an anti-American Europe.

    Since the Paris-Berlin axis was completed by an understanding with Moscow, we can understand why the nations of the former Communist bloc wondered if it were really worth the trouble of joining a Europe where all the slogans of the bygone Soviet era (the struggle for peace, the struggle against Zionism, against imperialism, social benefits) have returned in force.

    The dust-up with London compromises the second project which is dear to French officials: the construction of a European army. Without Franco-British collaboration there can be no European army worthy of the name. There again, Paris’ anti-Atlanticist orientation has not only nipped in the bud the attempt to put European defense on its feet, but it considerably weakened Tony Blair, the most pro-European of British leaders. Nothing better serves the aims of the Europhobes on the other side of the Atlantic than the fracas of French diplomacy.

    In brief, wherever it turned, France got the opposite of what it sought.

    It wanted a united, anti-American Europe and succeeded in dividing the continent more seriously than it had ever been before.

    It had hoped to be the leader to this Europe and found itself isolated opposite an organized coalition of European states. It relations with Britain are moribund and contentious with its Latin sisters, with the dubious support of a hesitant Germany and a Russia that is more than ever given to double-gaming.

    It has earned the dangerous enmity of America without having covered its rear-guard.

    Strictly from the point of the goals France claimed to be attaining, Chirac’s diplomacy is an overwhelming fiasco.

    Now for the fundamental point, namely: to what degree does the attitude of French diplomacy correspond to the real interests of our country.

    In its foreign policy, France has in a way put on the boots of the defunct Soviet Union:

    * same obstructionist policy at the UN,
    * same third-world-ist demagoguery,
    * same alliance with the Arab world,
    * same ambition to take the lead in a coalition of “anti-imperialist” states against Washington.

    France has resurrected Primakov’s old Eurasian master plan, which consisted in creating a Paris-Berlin-Moscow-Beijing axis against the Anglo-Saxons, a goal in which Putin’s Russia no longer believes but in which it encourages Paris because Russia sees it as a way of improving its position in negotiating with Washington.

    The anti-American obsession means that France is less than inquisitive as to the nature of regimes to which it lends its support in the name of multipolarity. Iraq, Algeria, Zimbabwe, Sudan: in a word, France seems to get on better with the rogue states and failed states than with the United States whose civilization it shares. It claims to defend international law by leaning on states that ignore all laws.

    The comparison to the Soviet Union goes further than it may seem. Indeed, French diplomacy is less inspired by a cynical Realpolitik (whence the failures mentioned above) than by an ideological view of the world. Its anti-Americanism is the projection of its internal jacobinism onto the global stage. The unhealthy French communion in anti-Americanism reveals the start of a drift towards totalitarianism in our country, which was already noticeable by the second round of the elections: Bush has replaced Le Pen in the role of enemy of the people. “Anti-Bushism” can be compared to the “anti-fascism” of the ‘30s and ‘40s: it conceals an obligatory communist-type consensus.

    Like those in the USSR of Brezhnev, French leaders compensate with a ruinous foreign activism for their inability to begin crucial internal reforms, which are impossible because they would call into question the socialist dogma at the foundation of the French state. In both cases, foreign activism both accelerates and accentuates the internal crisis. We saw what became of the Soviet Union.

    In France, the evidence of the decay of the state has been mounting for two years and the Iraq matter acted to reveal this.

    French leaders have sought to justify their position on the question of Iraq by emphasizing that France rejected the “clash of civilizations” and consequently favored the integration of French Muslims.

    True, president Chirac was hailed in the Arab quarters. But the official anti-Americanism has favored the explosive mixture of a virulent Trotskyite movement, an Islamist movement, an anti-Globalization movement and a third-world-ist movement. This poisonous cocktail feeds not only the youths of the Arab neighborhoods but the high school students sent out to demonstrate for peace by their leftist teachers in the name of “activism.” In this sense, the orientations of French diplomacy only reflect the strident third-world-ization of France, starting with the third-world-ization of minds. President Chirac defies Bush but gives in before to the ghettos.

    In a telling way, Dominique de Villepin told parliament that the French position was to bring about the failure of “anglo-Saxon liberalism.” Like most of their Arab interlocutors, French leaders feel the need is more urgent to stand up to the United States, even when they are right, than to start down the path of reforms which could save the state from bankruptcy.

    The most serious part of all this is that anti-American passion has numbed the French to the consequences of this deliberate break with the Western camp.

    Consequences which were already perceptible in the excesses of the peace demonstrations, in the fact that the French state is less and less able to guarantee the security of goods and persons, starting with that of our Jewish fellow citizens. In the media, the view of the first days of the war in Iraq, often as overtly pro-Saddam propaganda, was clearly irresponsible, to the point of alarming officials with the Ministry of the Interior: according to one of them:

    “The depiction of the coalition’s shambles in Iraq is in some areas feeding a form of arrogance which the police on the ground are now witnessing... Just a spark and the anti-Americanism of the ghettos will feed uncontrollable violence” (Le Figaro 3 April, 2003).


    Foreign observers wonder at the causes of French madness.

    At the moment when the fragility of the French state is becoming visible to all, in the absence of any credible European defense, is it really wise to break with our American ally, to the point that it now views us as an enemy? Even Russia has understood that it has an interest in not stirring things up with America, precisely because of its own internal weaknesses. Russia remains anti-America at bottom but it is keeping a low profile, happy to see France be the lightning rod for Washington — and this strategy is paying off: the American media, for which no word is too harsh in condemning France, find every excuse for Putin.

    The first explanation for the behavior of our leaders is irresponsibility — they believe that they will not have to answer to anyone.

    This irresponsibility is driven so far that they seem to be surprised at the consequences of their acts: thus they were not expecting the flare-up of francophobia in the United States, convinced they could persist in their provocations of Washington without risking retaliation. The habit of impunity in internal politics ended up giving rise to a disastrous foreign policy, as was exactly the case for the late USSR.

    In the case of France, one must add futility and vanity, permanent factors in our diplomacy.

    Chirac’s foreign policy is due in part to the anxiety of the political class before the increasingly obvious failure of “republican integration.” Rather than face the danger, we take refuge in denial.

    We declare that France does not believe in the “clash of civilizations,” as if denial were enough to erase it. For greater security, we go as far as abolishing the idea of civilization. This is why we seek to deny at all costs the fact that France shares the same civilization as the United States, by cultivating with some fanfare our overflow into extra-legal zones. Anti-Americanism plays a central role in this mechanism.

    Our foreign policy thus expresses a sort of preemptive capitulation. France takes the initiative of breaking with the Western camp in the hope of avoiding a battle of wills with its wild and fanatical youth after having failed to tame it. This profound cowardice is hidden behind the exhibited panache of a little country that oppose a big one. The myth of Asterix hides a decidedly more sordid reality. Anti-Americanism makes possible this fraud and the continuance of a policy that risks making us ill beyond repair and sinking all of Europe with us.


    * Senior lecturer at Paris-IV Sorbonne

    © Françoise Thom et upjf.org
    http://watch.windsofchange.net/themes_59.htm
    "Lord... forgive me my actions, speech and thoughts. Because, Lord, I am seriously going to kick some unrighteous ass in Your Name, Amen."
    Princess of Wands by John Ringo (Jan 2006)

    http://www.baen.com/chapters/W200601...9232.htm?blurb

  • #2
    Well...someone eventually had to break the 666 curse...

    Thanks Dan...
    I have no problem at all with being proved wrong. Especially when being proved wrong leaves the world a better place, than being proved right...

    Comment


    • #3
      Strange, all this fuss about France, Europe and the UN and very little mention of NATO. Where does the future of NATO fit into the struggle against US "unilateralism"?

      Furthermore, stalwart French efforts to undermine NATO seem to have borne fruit after the Franco-German refusal of to give the alliance’s military assistance to Turkey. Yet again, French behavior succeeded only in heightening the Bush administration’s already marked tendency toward unilateralism.
      The US did not need Franco-German support to successfully occupy Iraq and so it went alone. Furthermore NATO members are now lining up to get a piece of Iraq both militarily and economically. The US should also have the same prerogative to refuse to participate in NATO activities like the bombing of Serbia? Despite all the complaining, the US has proven more reliable to Europe then the other way around. I suspect all this talk about "unilateralism" is actually an attempt to shore up this reliability.
      Get the US out of NATO, now!

      Comment


      • #4
        What is the Franco-German duo that France is supposed to "resurrect"? I thought the two countries had been in more or less bitter rivalry since the dawn of the Gallic and Germanic tribes in that part of Europe. The 58 years since the end of WW2 is one of the longest periods they have tolerated each other without open warfare.

        "Artillery adds dignity to what would otherwise be a ugly brawl."
        --Frederick II, King of Prussia

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by MonsterZero
          What is the Franco-German duo that France is supposed to "resurrect"? I thought the two countries had been in more or less bitter rivalry since the dawn of the Gallic and Germanic tribes in that part of Europe. The 58 years since the end of WW2 is one of the longest periods they have tolerated each other without open warfare.
          Pretty much, but with the establishment of the European Coal and Steel community, which led to the European Economic Community, the age old question of how to get them to stop fighting was solved - economic integration. May not be fullproof, but it seems to have worked so far.

          The Franco-German duo referred to would have its root in the ECSC and the EEC, as the major players were always Germany and France.
          "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."

          – Associate Justice Louis D. Brandeis, Olmstead vs. United States.

          Comment


          • #6
            Perhaps, but in 1939 Germany's largest trading partner was France. Dunno if the frogs reciprocated or not. In any event it shows that economic interest isn't a full proof gaurantee of peace.
            "Lord... forgive me my actions, speech and thoughts. Because, Lord, I am seriously going to kick some unrighteous ass in Your Name, Amen."
            Princess of Wands by John Ringo (Jan 2006)

            http://www.baen.com/chapters/W200601...9232.htm?blurb

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Dan Neely
              Perhaps, but in 1939 Germany's largest trading partner was France. Dunno if the frogs reciprocated or not. In any event it shows that economic interest isn't a full proof gaurantee of peace.
              Learn somethig new everyday. That is a bit surprising, but then again, what France and Germany would have had in 1939 is quite primitive, relationship wise, to what the EU represents today.

              Maybe it's just me, but war between EU member states seems about as likely as war between the US and Canada. Or am I just thinking wishfully here in regards to the US and canada? We do have a lot of oil and the most freshwater in the world . It seems many people are predicting fresh water will become the "blue gold" of the future.
              "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."

              – Associate Justice Louis D. Brandeis, Olmstead vs. United States.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MikeJ:

                Maybe it's just me, but war between EU member states seems about as likely as war between the US and Canada. Or am I just thinking wishfully here in regards to the US and canada? We do have a lot of oil and the most freshwater in the world . It seems many people are predicting fresh water will become the "blue gold" of the future.
                It's a good question MikeJ. I'm certain people after WWI thought Europe was finished fighting each other. America sees unipolarization as a threat to it's soverignty. I believe, in part, Europe embraces this out of necessity. First, it was needed to combat communism. Now it's needed to counter American hegemony.

                At some point, the unity will no longer be seen as necessary. It will become counter-productive to economic and social prosperity. In a way, that's already occured. I recalled a friend from Portugal being angry at how the United Kingdom treated his country at a EU meeting. To some degree, I think the UK is a more local version of the US, and will be treated as such in the future by it's neighbors. It has nothing to do with it's relationship with the US. Instead, Britian will be seen as oppressing the progress of it's neighbors by dominating the unipolarization Tony Blair loves.

                At one time, I carried some shame for thinking unilateralism was an unnecessary evil. However, I've come to realize that man has yet to evolve beyond the point where it is willing to endure hardships for long in order to improve their neighbor.

                The United States should realize it can't stop the world from improving their standard of living at our expense. People like Bush believes it must protect all our interest to ensure our position. We don't, and can't. The world has it's own dream, and we're going to need to accept that.

                So, I don't believe the current peace and unity seen in Europe is permanent. The world isn't big enough for everyone. Right now, the region has a common problem. Once we're gone, and that will happen, all hell is going to break loose.
                Last edited by Deltapooh; 21 May 03, 16:49.
                "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                Comment


                • #9
                  External enemies for internal solidarity are a good way of keeping unity, but it's by no means necessary.

                  Social identity theory tells us that nationalism, tribalism, racism and pretty much anything that involves defining (part of) your identity with a social group are essentially the same thing.

                  There are plenty of examples, both succeses and failures, of differing people binding together under the rather arbitrary lines of national borders to know that one does not need an enemy to be united. States, provinces - conceptually no different than what the EU is doing with nations. Building up the identity of "Europe" is a large part of what the EU seems to be trying to do.

                  In short, I don't think the EU needs to have an outside "enemy" to maintain unity anymore than I believe the US needs an external enemy to prevent states from seceeding from the union.
                  "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."

                  – Associate Justice Louis D. Brandeis, Olmstead vs. United States.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by MikeJ
                    External enemies for internal solidarity are a good way of keeping unity, but it's by no means necessary.

                    Social identity theory tells us that nationalism, tribalism, racism and pretty much anything that involves defining (part of) your identity with a social group are essentially the same thing.

                    There are plenty of examples, both succeses and failures, of differing people binding together under the rather arbitrary lines of national borders to know that one does not need an enemy to be united. States, provinces - conceptually no different than what the EU is doing with nations. Building up the identity of "Europe" is a large part of what the EU seems to be trying to do.

                    In short, I don't think the EU needs to have an outside "enemy" to maintain unity anymore than I believe the US needs an external enemy to prevent states from seceeding from the union.
                    Enemies are not the necessity. Common goals are. I doubt Europe will have a common goal (above individual prosperity) once the US and other problems have been taken care of.

                    The union went to war once. I believe the end to slavery threatened the economy of the Southern states. There was no clear immediate solution, so war ensued. We might have fought a second Civil War had it not been for a number of counter measures like government aid, and the establishment of a transcontinential transportation system that allows people to move with the jobs.

                    The EU is not a collection of states. People living in Europe is usually the first to make clear the distinction between the various countries. Thus, the bond that is seen in states doesn't exists. Right now there is a common agenda in Europe. As long as this is present, I believe you will see unity.

                    However, man behaves reasonably when he has no other choice. Once it becomes less enticing, I believe you will see a split between European governments. Right now, the United Kingdom is dominant. However, domination is by no means insurance.

                    One day, maybe man will realize the curse of being No. 1, and settle for anything below it. Until then, there can be no long term unity.
                    "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Will the EU eventually move to one language (english, french?) and culture? It's doubtful it can survive long term as one entity without some changes. Look at what happened to most multi-cultural countries in the past 100 years (Ottoman Empire, Soviet Union, Yugoslavia). They fell apart along ethnic, language, and cultural lines.
                      "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

                      Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Why does France still hold that chair in the UN? There are other countries (Japan for example) that have a far greater impact on the world than France.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SkyVon
                          Why does France still hold that chair in the UN? There are other countries (Japan for example) that have a far greater impact on the world than France.
                          Huh? And in what way does Japan have a greater impact than France?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Deltapooh
                            Enemies are not the necessity. Common goals are. I doubt Europe will have a common goal (above individual prosperity) once the US and other problems have been taken care of.
                            Someone once said (and my apologies to whomever said it as I don't remember who did): economic considerations aren't the only explanation for war, but they are recurringly the explanation for the biggest ones.

                            Economy > all. And given that the EU formed from essentially an economic partnership between various European states, I don't see any particular reason it would suddenly fall apart, unless people perceive economic inequalities that are not being addressed. The EU makes quite an effort in this regard however, by way of massive payouts to improve the quality of life and economies of member states to bring them to something resembling parity. If you look at the details of the EU and how it works, its quite an amazing bit of work really. There are questions of sovereignty mixed in there that will always pop up, but the people who setup the EU did a lot of thinking ahead. For the same reasons I'm something of fans of the founding fathers of America, I'm a fan of those who setup the EU.


                            The union went to war once. I believe the end to slavery threatened the economy of the Southern states. There was no clear immediate solution, so war ensued. We might have fought a second Civil War had it not been for a number of counter measures like government aid, and the establishment of a transcontinential transportation system that allows people to move with the jobs.
                            How likely is a second civil war today? Would it be a safe assumption that the risk of such an event has declined over time, not increased?

                            The EU is not a collection of states. People living in Europe is usually the first to make clear the distinction between the various countries. Thus, the bond that is seen in states doesn't exists. Right now there is a common agenda in Europe. As long as this is present, I believe you will see unity.
                            Do you think it was more or less common for Americans to identify themselves with their state a couple hundred years ago than it is today? As globalization and integration increase it's natural that people identify at increasingly higher levels.


                            One day, maybe man will realize the curse of being No. 1, and settle for anything below it. Until then, there can be no long term unity.
                            Perhaps its just me, but it seems like this was the thinking that dominated Europe for so many hundreds of years and they are only now moving away from that train of thought. The nationalism that decimated Europe time and time is now anathema to them, which is why the Iraq crisis prompted such deep divisions. The US has experienced neither shame nor humiliation like many of the major European powers have. Although, I have to admit we did see the same kind of thinking after the "War to End All Wars" (for all of 20 years anyways).

                            Will the EU eventually move to one language (english, french?) and culture? It's doubtful it can survive long term as one entity without some changes. Look at what happened to most multi-cultural countries in the past 100 years (Ottoman Empire, Soviet Union, Yugoslavia). They fell apart along ethnic, language, and cultural lines.
                            Differing language and culture will always cause friction - but I believe economic considerations override such factors.

                            In the USSR, Ottoman Empire, Yugoslavia - there was a common theme. Economic injustice. Yugoslavia is perhaps the most obvious and visible example of the three, but it existed in all of them.

                            In Yugoslavia, the ethnic rivalry and hatred was spurred on largely by Serbian economic dominance of the federation. Tito understood this and tried (with what seems to have been mixed success) to make the various factions that formed Yugoslavia economically dependent on each other. Car parts for example, were manufactured in every corner of Yugoslavia. It made little economic sense, from an efficiency standpoint, to do it that way. But there were political motivations at work. However, after Tito's death, Serbian dominance of the economy of Yugoslavia grew and this fueled ethnic rivalries, jealousy and conflict.

                            In Eastern Europe, after several revolts against the USSRs puppet regimes were put down, the puppet leaders were authorized to spend more money on consumer goods and quality of life, which quelled much of the dissent.

                            The American colonies revolted from Britain largely for economic reasons.

                            The overriding factor and theme seems to usually be economics. If people can put their own house in order and live in reasonable conditions, there is little cause for upheaval and infighting.

                            The ethnic, religious and social divisions just make it easier for groups of people to identify a common foe.

                            Why does France still hold that chair in the UN? There are other countries (Japan for example) that have a far greater impact on the world than France.
                            Their large stockpile of nuclear weapons and their capability to deliver those weapons around the globe? Just a guess.
                            "Experience should teach us to be most on our guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficent. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of their liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greatest dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding."

                            – Associate Justice Louis D. Brandeis, Olmstead vs. United States.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              In Yugoslavia, the ethnic rivalry and hatred was spurred on largely by Serbian economic dominance of the federation. Tito understood this and tried (with what seems to have been mixed success) to make the various factions that formed Yugoslavia economically dependent on each other. Car parts for example, were manufactured in every corner of Yugoslavia. It made little economic sense, from an efficiency standpoint, to do it that way. But there were political motivations at work. However, after Tito's death, Serbian dominance of the economy of Yugoslavia grew and this fueled ethnic rivalries, jealousy and conflict.
                              This is in no way true. It is exactly like the fable that the Soviet Union was a Russian empire. In both cases it is more like the union was formed in order to more properly extract the resources of the more developed member. Did Serbia "dominate" Yugoslavia? More in the way that a host "dominates" some collection of parasites. A clue to the situations in both cases are provided by exceptions. In the case of the Soviet Union consider Poland or the Ukraine. In the case of Yugoslavia, consider Albania. Also observe the dictatorships involved. How could Serbia or Russia really dominate economically when the dictators themselves were never Serb or Russian?
                              Get the US out of NATO, now!

                              Comment

                              Latest Topics

                              Collapse

                              Working...
                              X