Human Rights Review

, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 57–71 | Cite as

Genocide in Kosovo

  • Peter Ronayne
Article

Conclusion

That Kosovo exploded with genocidal violence in 1999 and ultimately prompted outside intervention surprised few—it was a long-festering hotspot but one that fell low on the world politics priority lists, despite the brutal “wars of Yugoslav” succession that engulfed Serbia, Bosnia, and Croatia. But for a relatively small scale conflict in a rather unknown corner of the world, Kosovo’s crisis of 1998–1999 brought with it a host of complex issues that challenge the international community to this day. As with any issue or case in the area of genocide studies, attention and understanding must first go to the dramatic human suffering inflicted upon one group by another. The macro-level political, legal, and ethical discussion and debates swirling about Kosovo should not and must not obscure the powerful and provocative human element at play. First and foremost, the Kosovo issue revolves around how best to save lives following an explosion of genocidal violence. Simultaneously, however, Kosovo in 1999 exploded with ramifications for the future of state sovereignty, the United Nations, and understanding the causes of genocide, nation building, and humanitarianism in the twenty-first century.

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References

  1. Daalder, Ivo, and O'Hanlon, Michael (Fall 1999). Unlearning the lessons of Kosovo. Foreign Policy, 116, 128–140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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Annotated Bibliography

  1. Abrams, Jason (2001). The atrocities in Cambodia and Kosovo: Observations on the codification of genocide. New England Law Review, 35(2), 303–309. A short response piece to Schabas (2001). (See the annotation of Schabas' piece below.) Abrams draws attention to the distinction between intent and motive vis-à-vis genocide and describes a scenario under which genocide is in essence a tool for a larger motive of ethnic cleansing.Google Scholar
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  25. Simma, Bruno (1999). NATO, the UN, and the use of force: Legal aspects. European Journal of International Law, 10(1), 1–22. Expresses grave concern for international law if the Allied Force exception (illegal action for just cause) becomes the rule, although doesn't make a compelling case that this is likely to happen.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Staub, Ervin (1989). The Roots of Evil: The Origins of Genocide and Other Group Violence. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 336 pp. While not a book about Kosovo specifically (it obviously predates all of the Balkan crises of the 1990s), the overlay of his approach to understanding genocide (psychological, cultural, economic factors) onto the Kosovo crisis in enlightening and provocative.Google Scholar
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  28. Vickers, Miranda (1998). Between Serb and Albanian: A History of Kosovo. New York: Columbia University Press. 328 pp. From one of Britain's leading authorities on the Kosovo issue, this book makes its mark with emphasis on the parallel history of difficulty between Kosovo Albanians and the Albanians in Albania proper and tracing the evolution of the Kosovar Albanian independence movement.Google Scholar
  29. Woodward, Susan L (1995). Balkan Tragedy: Chaos and Dissolution after the Cold War: Washington, DC: Brookings Institution. 536 pp. Detailed description and analysis of the broader Balkan breakdown in the early to mid 1990s. Provides relevant background/context for later events in Kosovo.Google Scholar
  30. Zimmermann, Warren (1996). Origins of a Catastrophe: Yugoslavia and its Destroyers—America's Last Ambassador Tells What Happened and Why. New York: Times Books. 269 pp. An insider perspective on Milosevic and his hypernationalist leadership style related from the perspective of the last U.S. ambassador to Yugoslavia.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer 2004

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  • Peter Ronayne

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