After the fall of the Soviet Union, the former Yugoslavian countries began to divide along ethnic lines. Of the five states (Serbia and Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, and Slovenia), three of them began waging war:
- Serbia (Orthodox Christians) under Slobodan Milosevic
- Bosnia (Muslims) under Alija Izetbegovic
- Croatia (Roman Catholics) under Franjo Tudjman
Initially, both Croatia and Serbia desired to take land from Bosnia. However, as the war progressed, Croatia took the side of Bosnia in order to push Serbia out of the region. Ethnic cleansing (especially by the Serbs) was commonplace, and it wasn't until Croatian intervention (on the ground with Operation Storm) and NATO intervention (in the air with Operation Deliberate Resolve) that the war slowed down. Eventually, after a four-year long siege of Sarajevo (the Bosnian capital), the Dayton Accords were signed.
However, the ethnic cleansing continued, most notably at Kosovo. After another NATO intervention led by General Wesley Clark, peace was restored again.
For more information, read: My Life by Bill Clinton
The Statesman's Yearbook 2006
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