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Austria's International Position after the End of the Cold War

Günter Bischof
Ferdinand Karlhofer

Eastern Europe and the Balkans

The Return of History in the Balkans after the Cold War: International Efforts at Crisis Management and Conflict Resolution

Hanspeter Neuhold

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The disintegration of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY) constituted the tragic exception to the otherwise rapid and peaceful end of the Cold War that had divided Europe since 1945. The collapse of the Communist regimes in Eastern Europe and the withdrawal of the Soviet Union from its zone of influence caught even experts by surprise. Equally unexpected was the implosion of three states created not after the Second but already after the First World War: the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR), Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia. But whereas the dissolution of the Soviet Union occurred with little and the “velvet divorce” between Czechs and Slovaks without any bloodshed, the dismemberment of the SFRY not only took almost two decades but was marked by large-scale violence and atrocities. Events in its southeastern neighborhood are of particular importance to Austria, for historical, geostrategic, political, and economic reasons.

What shocked enlightened, “post-moder...

© innsbruck university press, 2013

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