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Strategic Rebellion

Ethnic Conflict in FYR Macedonia and the Balkans


Pavlos Ioannis Koktsidis

Since the end of the Cold War, the consolidation of peace and security in south-eastern Europe has been one of the most complex and troublesome issues facing the international community. The sequence of conflicts in the Balkans has resulted in serious loss of life, economic collapse, and a number of controversial interventions, leading contemporary scholars to reconsider old perceptions about violent ethnic conflict. Drawing on a wealth of theoretical and empirical sources, this book tackles some of the prevailing questions on the root causes and management of ethnic conflict. Under what conditions do ethnic minorities become violent? How credible are the theories of «relative deprivation» and «greed» in explaining the outbreak of conflict? Is the use of coercive diplomacy a superior alternative to direct military forms of intervention? This book provides an analytical account of the socio-economic roots of ethnic conflict, the opportunities for violent mobilization and the success of strategic coercion in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and it also examines related developments in Kosovo and the Balkans.


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Acknowledgements ix Abbreviations and Acronyms xi Glossary of Ethnic Terms xv List of Tables xvii Introduction 1 Chapter 1 Ethnic Conf lict from a Strategic Perspective 11 Aggression and Relative Deprivation 12 Relative Deprivation or Relative Depredation? 22 Strategic Rebellion: A Theoretical Framework 30 Strategic Coercion 38 Ethnic Conf lict, Strategic Coercion and the Backlash Ef fect 46 Chapter 2 The Collapse of Socialist Yugoslavia 51 Political Oppression and Economic Decline 51 Yugoslavia’s Economic Recession and Political Collapse 56 Deprivation and Grievances in SYR Macedonia and Elsewhere in Yugoslavia 63 The Final Collapse of Yugoslavia 70 vi Chapter 3 Relative Deprivation 77 The Constitution of FYR Macedonia 78 Deprivation in Education and Language 81 Decentralization and Self-Government 85 Discrimination and Unemployment 91 Structured Content Analysis 99 Chapter 4 The Strategic Environment 113 State Strength and External Legitimacy 113 Greece 118 Bulgaria 124 Serbia 129 Albania 131 Conf lict Spillover 135 Geography, Resources and Albanian Insurgencies 147 Chapter 5 Management of the Albanian Insurgency 157 Conf lict Emergence 157 Origins of the NLA 161 Military Responses 167 Political Responses 170 Conf lict Escalation 173 Strategic Coercion and Settlement 179 Conf lict Evaluation 187 Assessing the Success of Strategic Coercion 188 vii Chapter 6 Strategic Coercion and the Backlash Ef fect 197 Political Antagonism 198 Communal Frustration with the Settlement 202 Negative Peace and New Deprivation 206 Conclusion 219 Appendix 1 Origins and Profiles of Main Parties and Groups 233 Appendix 2 Chronology of Major Events: 1991–2007 237 Appendix 3 Recorded...

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