The European Community (precursor to the EU) was almost unanimous in agreeing that the best way to avoid a war in Yugoslavia was for it to remain one nation. Member states voted 11 to 1 in 1991 to support a resolution that stated that “the best way of achieving stability in the Balkans was for Yugoslavia to remain united, albeit in a revised, looser federal form.”
The one ended up overruling the 11.
Here’s how T.W. “Bill” Carr, associate publisher of Defense and Foreign Affairs’ Strategic Policy, describes what happened:
Germany, despite its current problems, remains the strongest economy in Europe. During the Maastricht negotiations, a reunited Germany used that power to further what appeared to be its historical strategic objective to control the territories of Croatia, Slovenia and Dalmatia, with their access to the Adriatic and Mediterranean.
During protracted negotiations, Germany wore down the other EC members and eventually, at 04.00 hours on the morning of the debate, the 11:1 vote to hold Yugoslavia united turned into a unanimous vote to recognize Croatia as an independent state on the grounds that the right to self-determination overruled all other criteria.
“In order to maintain its own unity, the EC sacrificed the unity of Yugoslavia, and with it, the stability of the Balkans,” Carr writes.
“Germany had won round one,” he continues. “Shortly after, Germany won round two when Bosnia-Herzegovina was also recognized, despite EC negotiator Lord Carrington’s advice that such a step would result in a civil war.”
America, too, allowed itself to be led by Germany into pushing Yugoslavia into civil war.
But Germany wasn’t alone. Carr writes, “The German/Croatian axis and expansionist Islam are the key players in the region, along with the very real interest and role played by the Vatican and the Croatian Catholic Church.”