17 February 2014, 15:26

Unrest in Bosnia: here is what Carl Bildt wants Ukraine to look like

Unrest in Bosnia: here is what Carl Bildt wants Ukraine to look like
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During the whole past week the European press was filled with articles about Bosnia – one of the former republics of Yugoslavia, where recent labor riots left several government buildings burnt.

The press of the United States and of the European Union put the blame on the allegedly dysfunctional government of Bosnia, whose handling of the economy led to a 44 percent unemployment among the country’s active population.

Newspapers also lamented the fact that the country is being destroyed for the second time in just 20 years – in the early 1990s an interethnic war among Bosnia’s Orthodox Serbs, Catholic Croats and the majority Moslems left 100 thousand people dead.

Well, the statistics cited by the European newspapers reveal that the Bosnian government is dysfunctional. What is omitted is the question: who made it dysfunctional? For almost 15 years Bosnia was in fact run by the so called High Representative for Bosnia, a position filled by European diplomats. A lot of locals called Bosnia a “protectorate” of the European Union, and the British politician Paddy Ashdown, who in fact ran Bosnia from 2002 to 2006, was compared to a medieval Balkan ruler for his lifestyle. Some people even continue to call the High Representative in Bosnia a representative of the EU, although formally this position is now under United Nations’ auspices. The problem is, however, is not in the source of the High Representative’s power.

The problem is that the results of the European Union’s rule in Bosnia were dismal. Under Paddy Ashdown and the Swedish diplomat Carl Bildt, Bosnia established the so called decentralized government, whose work was constantly blocked because of the quarrels between Serbs. Croats and Moslems. These nations did not want to live in the same country, but Mr. Carl Bildt wanted to keep them in the same confederation by all means. The result are the 44 percent unemployment and the withdrawal of foreign businesses from Bosnia.

The other discouraging thing is that Carl Bildt is now aspiring to be the main authority of the European Union on all questions concerning Ukraine. Meanwhile, Mr. Bildt’s dismal performance in Bosnia is giving reasons for concern, just like the record of the European Commission’s Barrosu in running the economy of his native Portugal. But, obviously, such great people can’t stay idle. After Bosnia, they long to divert their energy to Ukraine.


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