The Bosnian Genocide
April 1992-December 1995
Before the War!(huh! What is it good for? Absolutely nothing! Say it again y'all!)
In 1946 the federal people's republic of Yugoslavia was formed by Josip Broz Tito. He ruled the country for years until his death in the 1980's. Yugoslavia was a very diverse country with Muslims, Catholics, and orthodox religions. When he died the countries with these cultures started to move away from Yugoslavia and decided to move closer to a more independent way of life.
As more and more countries declared independence the Yugoslavs people's army (JNA) moved troops into Bosnia and Herzegovina to protect it from the rebellious countries of Croatia and Slovenia. They were there to protect the people but when the Republica Srpska was formed due to the serb population of Bosnia they created their own council and formally declared independence as the Republic of Srpska they declared war on Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Beginning of the War
War was declared between Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republika Srpska with Serbia and Yugoslavia entering the war on the Republika Srpska side. War was declared on April 6th, 1992 the war would continue for another three years. In the beginning of the war the Bosnian Serbs (Republika Srpska) attacked many Bosniak (bosnian muslims) towns and villages. They razed them to the ground and killed every man there. They let all the women and children leave but during many of these massacres the women were raped and tortured. Sarajevo was the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina it was besieged by the bosnian serbs, serbs, and the JNA. This siege continued for 44 months and its goal was clear: To inflict suffering and fear on Bosnian civilians (mainly Bosniaks) to get Bosnian authorities to accept the serbian demands. By June of 1992, the number of displaced people in the country reached 2.6 million.
Croatia joins the war
Croatia declared war on Bosnia and Herzegovina because they wanted to unite the croat community in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the independent country of Croatia. Bosnia and Herzegovina was able to repel them on all fronts but they were now surrounded on all sides by Serbia and Croatia. They had an advantage because they could turn their mass industry buildings into arms manufacturing factories. This helped them turn the tide against the Croatians and it even let them take some land.
In early January 1993, the deputy prime minister of Bosnia and Herzegovina (RBiH) was killed by Serbian troops on his way to an airport while being guarded by UN troops. The UN eventually enforced a no-fly zone above the former Yugoslav country. During the Lašva valley ethnic cleansing campaign Bosniak citizens of the Lašva valley were mistreated and murdered. Croatian forces put up heavy anti-bosniak propaganda in the area and murdered children and elderly women. This part of the Bosniak genocide was carried out by the HVO and the Croat community of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
In the city of Sarajevo Serbian forces used artillery to attack and kill civilians during the Markale massacre. Markale was a marketplace in the city where on February 5, 1994 over 60 bosnian citizens were killed and over 140 were wounded. NATO was authorized to use air strikes against the Bosnian Serbs in the area who were shelling the city. They threatened the Bosnian Serbs with artillery attacks until they left and took the artillery weapons with them. On February 12, 1994 the city of Sarajevo had its first casualty free day since April of 1992.
On February 23, 1994 the Bosnian-Croat war ended. The two countries declared peace with each other and signed the peace treaty in Washington D.C. The treaty created ten autonomous states in the divided land in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia. This established the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
UN and NATO involvement
NATO continued its air strikes against Serbia and shot down any Serbian aircraft. The UN asked for close air support but it was denied at the time. With increased attacks on UN forces from Serbian troops NATO decided to approve close air support and the first attack by them after it was approved was an attack on the Udbina airfield in Serbian occupied Bosnia.
General Ratko Mladic who was the leader of the Republika Srpska armed forces attacked an UN safe area in Srebenica in Bosnia. Over 8,000 men were killed and many women were raped and put in detention centers. This massacre was called the Srebenica Massacre. The army of the Republika Srpska commited many more massacres inluding the Tuzla Massacre in May, and the second Markale Massacre. A sixty day cease fire was delcared on October 12, and in early November peace talks occurred in Dayton, Ohio. The war ended with the Dayton Peace agreement that was signed of November 21, 1995. The final version of the peace agreement was signed on December 14, 1995 in Paris, France. After the Dayton agreement 80,000 NATO forces entered Bosnia-Herzegovina. They were there to enforce peace and they had orders to fire when necessary and to help with reconstruction of the country.
The Bosnian Serb leadership ( Republika Srpska) were convicted of war crimes. Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic are still under trial for their crimes against humanity most notably the Srebenica Massacre. Slobodan Milosevic was the former leader of Serbia. He had sent his wife and children to Russia for political asylum there. He was arrested and under trial for war crimes but died due to a Massive heart attack in his prison cell. There were many other Serbian and Bosnian-Serb leaders who were convicted of war crimes including Croatian military and political leaders including Franjo Tudman. Who was leader of Croatia at the time.
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