Part Three: The Explosion of WarPart Three consists of three chapters which detail how the actual outbreak of hostilities in the former Yugoslavia, first in Slovenia and then in Croatia, and how the international community, most notably Europe, responded.
Chapter 12: "The Hour of Europe Has Dawned" Slovenia's Phony War, June-July 1991Slovenia's 10 day long "war" of independence is now rightly regarded as a brilliantly-executed piece of political theater carried out by the Slovene and Serb leadership, with the JNA (and the people of Slovenia) largely in the dark as to the real game being played. Another party left out of the loop was the European Community, who sent a "troika" of leaders to Yugoslavia, where they managed to accomplish two things--"force" the Yugoslav leadership into concessions they already planned on making; and revealing just how naive European leaders were for the responsibilities of international diplomacy of this sort, and how fundamentally they misread the situation in the former Yugoslavia. The Europeans never seemed to grasp that the warring parties had clearly-defined goals and rational--if not moral--reasons for resorting to using armed force. The likelihood that European diplomacy was up the task was slim from the very beginning.
Chapter 13: "An Undeclared and Dirty War" The JNA in Croatia July-December 1991While the war in Slovenia was a largely bogus and stage-managed affair with a pre-determined outcome, the war in Croatia was an all-too-real preview of the even greater horrors to follow in Bosnia. The use of heavy artillery against settled areas, followed by paramilitary forces; the cynical manipulation of the United Nations in order to consolidate gains; ethnic cleansing--it all happened in Croatia. Soon, it would all happen again, at greater extent and over a much longer period of time, in Bosnia.
Chapter 14: Yugoslavia A La Carte Lord Carrington's Plan September 1991-January 1992This chapter details the failed efforts led by Lord Carrington to get what became known as the "Carrington Plan" agreed to by the various republic leaders, as well as other European diplomatic initiatives, most notably the Badinter Commission, which was driven by German diplomatic pressure on the rest of the EC and which ultimately made the Carrington Plan--which Milosevic at any rate was not going to accept--a moot point. In the meantime, Cyrus Vance was able to broker another deal, one which brought "peace" to Croatia in exchange for a de facto ethnic partition; i.e., the Serbs agreed to let the UN do the dirty work of policing the border between the Serb-controlled areas of Croatia and the rest of the republic.
By the end, the independence of Slovenia and Croatia had been recognized, that of Macedonia was held up by Greek protests (which still reverberate today), and Bosnia was faced with the choice of declaring an independence it was ill-equipped to defend, or remaining in a "Yugoslavia" which by this point was rather nakedly a "Greater Serbia." The Badinter Commission's findings were duly ignored by the EC in the interests of political expediency and deference to German insistence (the commission had rejected Croatia's application), and Lord Carrington's plan was forgotten.
What this chapter makes clear is that his plan was not nearly as ill-conceived, unrealistic, and morally vacuous as many of the famous Western-designed plans for Bosnia which were to come. Carrington understood that the republics--not ethnicity--needed to be considered the constituent units of Federal Yugoslavia. This is the main reason his plan was rejected by Milosevic. His plan also demonstrated how far the international community was willing to go to assuage Serb fears and concerns, contrary to later propaganda claims that the Serbs were being railroaded by an "anti-Serb" international community.
This concludes Part Three. Part Four: Bosnia, is next.