Yesterday I saw that among the events that occurred on July 20th was the signing of the Corfu Declaration in 1917. Now if you are like me and intrigued by what this declaration was all about read on…… from Wikipedia….
The Corfu Declaration is the agreement that made the creation of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia possible. In 1916, the Serbian Parliament in exile decided the creation of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia at a meeting inside the Municipal Theatre of Corfu, Greece. The declaration was signed near the end of World War I on the island of Corfu on 20 July 1917, by the Yugoslav Committee of politicians in exile, that represented Slovenes, Croats and Serbs living in Austria-Hungary and the representatives of the Kingdom of Serbia, with political sponsorship of Great Britain and France, under their avowed principles of national self-determination.
The Declaration as the first step toward building the new State of Yugoslavia envisaged a parliamentary monarchy under the Karađorđević dynasty, with indivisible territory and unitary power, with the three national denominations and the Latin and Cyrillic alphabets equal before the law, religious freedom and universal suffrage. It provided for a Constituent Assembly to establish a Constitution that would be the origin of all powers.
I read on to learn more about the creation of modern-day Yugoslavia.
The Vidovdan Constitution of 1921 established the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes as a unitary state and, in 1922, 33 new administrative oblasts (coun ties) ruled from the center were instituted. These bore no relation to the earlier divisions. (61 districts existed between 1918 and 1922)
From 1929, the Kingdom was subdivided into nine new provinces called banovinas or banates. Their borders were intentionally drawn so that they would not correspond either to boundaries between ethnic groups, or to pre-World War Imperial borders. They were named after various geographic features, mostly rivers. Slight changes to their borders were made in 1931 with the new Yugoslav Constitution.Read More
Yugoslavia was renamed the Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia in 1946, when a communist government was established. It acquired the territories of Istria, Rijeka, and Zadar from Italy. Leader of the Partisans Josip Broz Tito ruled the country as the president until his death in 1980. In 1963, the country was renamed again to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY).
The constituent six Socialist Republics that made up the country were SR Bosnia and Herzegovina, SR Croatia, SR Macedonia, SR Montenegro, SR Slovenia, and SR Serbia. Serbia contained two Socialist Autonomous Provinces: Vojvodina and Kosovo, which after 1974 were largely equal to the other members of the federation. After an economic and political crisis in the 1980s and the rise of nationalism, Yugoslavia broke up along its republics’ borders, at first into five countries, leading to the Yugoslav Wars. Read More
We know over the last 25 years after the breakup of Yugoslavia there has been a War in Bosnia (1992–1995), which included the Srebrenica genocide, along with a war in Kosovo. A UN Peacekeeping Mission which was put in place in 1999 is still active in Kosovo!
Yugoslavia was a nation formed by arbitrarily drawing borders, with little regard for the people who live within those borders, additionally, it was a country under the authoritarian rule of Tito and the communists and once that authoritarian ruler was removed the whole nation fractured. One can’t help but see the similarities to Iraq!
As I read about Yugoslavia, I started to think about the fractures, that have existed in our nation, since the beginning of our country, that seem to be more pronounced every year. Are the southern states of America different from the northeast? Is the middle of America, also, different? We certainly see that they are when we look at the results of presidential elections, with the south and central portions of the nation being solidly red and each of the coasts being blue?? So the question I raise is can we overcome our divisions and move forward in a positive direction or are we doomed to be stuck in neutral in the future??
As I thought about all this my mind went wandering back to the 1981 and the book the Nine Nations of North America by Joel Garreau Is it an idea whose time has come…. here is a map of the Nine Nations! Read More
I know there are many folks in the south who would love to get rid of us northeast and west coast liberals! I could see Quebec, New England and The Foundry being one nation, and Dixie, the Breadbasket joining forces. Which kinda’ leaves Ecotopia out there by itself! Maybe the Empty Quarter becomes the bridge between east and west! What do you think??? Ridiculous most definitely, but if we don’t all learn to get along – maybe????