• The Balkans in the New Millennium: In The Shadow of Peace and War

      Gallagher, Tom G.P. (2007)
      Can the Balkans ever become a peaceful penisula like that of Scandinavia? With enlightened backing, can it ever make common cause with the rest of Europe rather than being an arena of periodic conflicts, political misrule, and economic misery? In the last years of the twentieth century, Western states watched with alarm as a wave of conflicts swept over much of the Balkans. Ethno-nationalist disputes, often stoked by unprincipled leaders, plunged Yugoslavia into bloody warfare. Romania, Bulgaria and Albania struggled to find stability as they reeled from the collapse of the communist social system and even Greece became embroiled in the Yugoslav tragedy. This new book examines the politics and international relations of the Balkans during a decade of mounting external involvement in its affairs.
    • From thieves to nation-builders: The nexus of banditry, insurgency and state-making in the Balkans, 1804-2006

      Anderson, Bobby (2007)
      The Yugoslav wars of the 1990s - namely Croatia/ Bosnia (1991-1995) and Kosovo (1998-1999) - were the focus of unprecedented, and uninformed, international attention. This attention accepted at face value an ethnic rationale for the conflict that was often peddled by the combatants themselves; such rationales served to mask the economic and political aspirations of engaged state- and non-state actors. The wars allowed organised crime to take root and proliferate exponentially across geographical, political, and economic spheres. It became a tool of states, militaries and militias; states co-opted criminals, and vice-versa. The Serbian state became a criminal entity (as did, to a lesser extent, surrounding states) in partial control of a thoroughly criminalised regional combat economy, often in collusion with supposed ethnic `enemies.¿ Reconstruction, development, and governance interventions conducted by international actors in the successor states of the former Yugoslavia remain stifled by an absence of understanding of both the systematic infrastructural presence of organised crime, and a lack of acknowledgement of the economic rationales underlying the wars themselves.