By Dimitar Bechev
Neighborhood cooperation has develop into a particular characteristic of the Balkans, a space identified for its turbulent politics. Exploring the origins and dynamics of this variation, this e-book highlights the transformative strength of the ecu and different overseas actors.
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Extra resources for Constructing South East Europe: The Politics of Balkan Regional Cooperation
Gojko Šušak, a prominent Herzegovinian Croat émigré who served as defence minister (1991–98), was involved in illicit imports of weapons for both Croatia and for Herceg-Bosna, the self-proclaimed Croat entity in Bosnia (Hockenos, 2003). Because of the UN arms embargo, the government in Sarajevo similarly found itself dependent, in the period 1992–4, on supply lines operated by semi-criminal actors. Bosnian Serbs and Croats were in a better position due to the absence of border controls along the Drina River and in Herzegovina.
Anastasakis and Bojicˇic´-Dželilovic´’s 2002 survey found that local elites saw regional schemes as designed, promoted and implemented by powerful outside actors. That regionalism has been an import commodity is a small wonder, given South East Europe’s legacies of conflict, economic downturn and post-1989 political volatility described in the foregoing chapter. This chimes well with what Iver Neumann (1994, 2001) defines as the ‘outside-in’ trajectory of regionalism. The outside-in understanding is particularly amenable to the notion of hegemony, central to both Neorealism and Neoliberal Institutionalism – arguably the dominant perspectives in IR over the past three decades or so.
20). 4 The backing of accord signatories Croatia and FR Yugoslavia, meaning essentially Franjo Tud¯man and Slobodan Miloševic´, was of paramount importance for keeping Bosnia’s radical Croats and Serbs at bay. In the year following Dayton, the duo met several times, under EU and US auspices, with Alija Izetbegovic´, the Bosniak member of the tripartite presidency in Bosnia. To be effective, regional arrangements had to embrace the whole of South East Europe. Symptomatically, Article 5 of Annex I-B to the Dayton Accord put forward ‘regional stability in and around former Yugoslavia (emphasis added)’ as a core political 44 Constructing South East Europe objective.
Constructing South East Europe: The Politics of Balkan Regional Cooperation by Dimitar Bechev