Did Serbs have a right to Krajina?

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,887
Well, I am certain Milošević's refusal played a part, but we shouldn't really consider the leaderships of Srpska and Krajina complete puppets of Serbia. Krajina Serbs also opposed the plan and this also played a big role.
That's why I said it was encouraging for those that did no want to compromise like that.

Part of the Krajina leadership clearly felt they should be able to stop Croatia militarily. But the potential of help from Serbia under Milosevic clearly added some extra moral fibre for those that were less certain.

I don't think Tudjman was sincere for a minute in accepting the proposal. The Croatian preference was always the military solution they went for. So the problem really was the kind of winner-take-all brinkmanship all parties were engaged in: Krajina, the Croats, Milosevic etc. Absolutely worst possible situation to try to propose compromise policies. No takers, since everyone is focused on outright victory and the destruction of the adversary.

The thing only might have had some hope if Mislosevic had been seriously on board with the plan, Krajina convinced it would have to come to terms with the Croatians, no real hope of Serbia riding to the rescue, really being up against the wall, and no other way out.

Croatia might still have decided to say "Feck it!" and attack in the end, but politically it would have been much, much more difficult for it. And it's status as aggressor in what everyone else would have thought a settled, peaceful compromise (the kind everyone else likes) would have been clear and apparent.
 

Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,731
SoCal
That's why I said it was encouraging for those that did no want to compromise like that.

Part of the Krajina leadership clearly felt they should be able to stop Croatia militarily. But the potential of help from Serbia under Milosevic clearly added some extra moral fibre for those that were less certain.

I don't think Tudjman was sincere for a minute in accepting the proposal. The Croatian preference was always the military solution they went for. So the problem really was the kind of winner-take-all brinkmanship all parties were engaged in: Krajina, the Croats, Milosevic etc. Absolutely worst possible situation to try to propose compromise policies. No takers, since everyone is focused on outright victory and the destruction of the adversary.

The thing only might have had some hope if Mislosevic had been seriously on board with the plan, Krajina convinced it would have to come to terms with the Croatians, no real hope of Serbia riding to the rescue, really being up against the wall, and no other way out.

Croatia might still have decided to say "Feck it!" and attack in the end, but politically it would have been much, much more difficult for it. And it's status as aggressor in what everyone else would have thought a settled, peaceful compromise (the kind everyone else likes) would have been clear and apparent.
Good analysis!

Also, who were the Serbs who remained in Croatia even after Operation Storm? I know that Croatia's pre-Storm Serb percentage was around 12% but after Storm it was only around 5%. Thus, I'm wondering which Serbs fled Croatia and which Serbs remained in Croatia.
 

Maki

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,735
Republika Srpska
1995 Krajina was a mess. You could describe it as a failed state. It isn't really surprising that it collapsed in just a few days. RSK suffered from corruption, undisciplined army, political incompetence, Kninocentrism (yes, I probably invented that term right now), delusions of help from FR Yugoslavia or R. Srpska etc.
 
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Futurist

Ad Honoris
May 2014
22,731
SoCal
1995 Krajina was a mess. You could describe it as a failed state. It isn't really surprising that it collapsed in just a few days. RSK suffered from corruption, undisciplined army, political incompetence, Kninocentrism (yes, I probably invented that term right now), delusions of help from FR Yugoslavia or R. Srpska etc.
What's Kninocentrism?

Also, was Republika Srpska much better organized and much better governed?
 

Maki

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,735
Republika Srpska
Knin was the capital of Serbian Krajina and during Krajina's existence the government mostly cared only about Knin. Situation in Knin during the war was much better than in other parts of Krajina, there were some events not typical during wartime such as football games and other events. This caused bitterness from the other parts of RSK since they believed the government didn't care about them. When Knin became endangered in 1994 and 1995 the government ordered units from other parts of Krajina to come and defend Knin, thus weakening those other parts. Other privileges were extended to Knin. For example, many inhabitants of Knin didn't have to enlist in the army. So, there was a lot of anger towards Knin and the people of Knin for their perceived inactivity. To illustrate this, we have an example of a brigade from the town of Benkovac. When this brigade was ordered to go to defend Knin, they almost mutinied and demanded to know why the inhabitants of Knin aren't defending their own town. Keep in mind that when Benkovac came under Croatian attack in 1993, they asked for reinforcements from Knin, but were refused. Knin was also the crime capital of Krajina. So, the people of Krajina generally didn't like Knin and its people. This manifested itself on August 6th 1995 when refugees from Knin were passing through the town of Srb. The people of Srb shouted insults at the people Knin. Things like: "Where are you going, Kninians?", "Why didn't you remain in your Knin to be defended by Momčilo Đujić? " (a famous WW2 Chetnik leader from Krajina).

As for your 2nd question, yes, compared to Krajina, Srpska was better organized and governed. For example, Milošević was able to overthrow the government of Krajina, yet couldn't do the same with the leadership of Srpska. However, Srpska had its own problems, conflicts between the President Karadžić and the military head Mladić, corruption etc.
 
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Maki

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,735
Republika Srpska
I would like to point out one more thing that I forgot last time: the Army of Republika Srpska actually rebelled against the government in September 1993. They were protesting against the corruption in the government and blockaded streets of Banja Luka.

 
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Oct 2011
507
Croatia
The Croats murdered three million Serbs during WW 2. Impressed the hell out of the Germans. The Croats remind me too much of the Turks.
Entire Yugoslavia suffered between 500 000 and 700 000 casualties during World War II, definitely no more than a million, even if the number was later inflated for various reasons (such as getting reparations from Germany). How the heck did you get three million just Serb casualties in NDH?

Fun fact: The 1939 Cvetkovic-Macek Agreement which created an autonomous Croatia within Yugoslavia actually let Croatia have the Serbian Krajina:

Cvetković–Maček Agreement - Wikipedia
Serbs were settled in Krajina by Austrian government during Ottoman wars to help with defending Austria. So while looking just at ethnic composition autonomous Krajina might be justified, there is no historical justification. Just like there is no historical justification for Albania to get Kosovo for example. Of course, going by historic justification for borders opens an entire can of worms.