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Aleksanteri Conference







Bakić, Jovo

From Cold Croatian Spring 1971 to Hot Croatian Summer 1991: the Effectiveness of secessionist nationalism during and after the Cold War

.The paper discussses the way in which the Cold War period thwarted the hopes and aims of the Croatian nationalism towards independence. In 1971, Croatian nationalistic Masovni pokret or Maspok (Massive Movement) failed because of two main factors: Tito’s determination to use military force, if necessary, and Soviet determination to provide “brotherly help”, if Tito had not been able to settle Croatia down by himself. In 1991 however, there was no foreign power that would be vitally interested in survival of Yugoslavia – in the way that France was in the period between the two World Wars, and the USSR and the USA after the WWII. Moreover, a major new European power, united Germany, was not in favour of Yugoslavia. Instead, it supported Croatia (and Slovenia) on their roads towards independence. That is why Croatian nationalism, which involved the very same persons as in 1971 (Franjo Tuđman and Stjepan Mesić, Savka Dabčević Kučar and Mika Tripalo, Dražen Budiša and Ivan Zvonimir Čičak, Šime Đodan, brothers Marko and Vlado Veselica, were all leaders of the Croatian Spring as well as leaders of the new more or less anti-Yugoslav parties in 1991), was able to realize its hopes and aims twenty years afterwards. As Bo Stråth has already shown by the example of Scandinavianism, small nation pan-nationalisms could only be successful if international political circumstances allow it. In other words, the conditions necessary for disintegration of Yugoslavia, i. e., rival nationalisms of the various Southern Slav nations, especially Serbian and Croatian, were present from the very formation of Yugoslavia 1918, but sufficient reasons – international political circumstances – were present only during WWII and at the end of the Cold War.

Thursday 29 Oct 11.15-12.45 SESSION 1
Panel: Party, Flag and Tribe: the Politics of Ethnicity