Surviving Yugoslavia and its identity?

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by HistoricalArthropod, Apr 22, 2019.

  1. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    With a pod after 1900, make it so that Yugoslavia not only survives, but thrives. Make it so that it includes all South Slavs, and that they all feel close to each other as one nation/ethnicity. Some questions:

    What would standardized Yugoslav sound like?

    What would the written form look like? Would it be in Latin, Cyrillic or both?

    Even if it isn't socialist, would it still be a strong promotor of secularism to bridge sectarian divides?

    How would non South Slavs (namely Albanians) fit into the national framework?
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  2. Histor32 Well-Known Member

    Dec 5, 2015
    americanyets na europa
    Yogoslavia .. as in the whole thing?
    no massive wars and conflict?

    well .. <cough>

    uhm.. what would it be?

    it would be a state that would have to become non centralized to survive. Croatia and Bosnia don't want to be under Serbian boots.. Macedonia.. isn't sure what it wants to be .. but it knowns it wants be the former republic known as the republic known as ..

    Yugoslavia would need to change quick and effectively with good leadership for starters
    two.. you would need to have all sides not want to roll like its 1900 again. too much animosity that was suppressed for 100 years but doesn't get resolved for some reason.

    Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia Herzegovina are not going to want to be second place players. there is way too much historical problems here.

    but lets say they play nice

    1990 -1992 rolls around

    Yugoslavia goes on..
    it either has to go full on asshat.. and stalin style ..
    or has to say you know what.. lets federate one nation.. one flag.. new constitution
    language.. they would stick with serbo Croatian
    everyone does the Cyrillic .. but latin would be acceptable alternative

    after that .. the place falls apart like .. well.. Yugoslavia ..

    would it survive .. that depends on the leadership of just not the nation, but the states/regions/republics
    if everyone understands together strong .. divided =war .. suffering and years of bullshit.. and crappy Hollywood movies.

    if it did survive .. it would mander along .. influenced by Italy, Greece, Germany, Poland and others. it couldn't tie itself to Russia or Ukraine, if it did it would be game over. that failed, and southern slavs are not Russians.

    if all went well, you would have a pretty well off state in the Balkans today, tourism would be popular, the economy would be biggest in the region,, bigger than Romania, bigger than hungary, bigger than Greece and Bulgaria.

    oh and Albanians were never southern slavs.. like saying greeks are slavs.. .. hell like saying croats are slavs..

    alas ..
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  3. oberdada Präsident des Welt- und Erdenballs

    Jan 5, 2006
    Keep the cold war going, keep Yugoslavia alive. Outside pressure.
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  4. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Idea. Maybe it can rearrange its internal subdivisions and break Serbia and Croatia and all the others into a bunch of provinces of relatively equal size and population?

    I never said Albanians where Slavs, but otl Yugoalavia did have a large population of Albanians so I wonder how they would fit into this.

    Also, don't be silly Croats are Slavs.
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  5. Changundramon Well-Known Member

    Aug 4, 2015
    Technically done in the 1. Yugoslavia. But it was mostly done to weaken Croatia, and this Yugoslavia didn't survive.
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  6. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Maybe Serbia can also be broken up into smaller bits like Vojvodina.
  7. BigBlueBox Well-Known Member

    Jun 21, 2017
    Southern California
    I’ll be quite my previous post on the topic, in which OP specified a PoD after VE-Day.
    Other posters in that thread pointed out the republics had well-armed paramilitary police forces. Those should be replaced with a federal police force along the lines of the FBI, with local police armed only with pistols and shotguns. After 1945 though, I don’t think there is any good way to bring Bulgaria into Yugoslavia and have it remain stable.

    I reject the idea that decentralization would save Yugoslavia. Czechoslovakia was more decentralized and still split, but peacefully. Serbia and Montenegro was also more decentralized than Yugoslavia ever was and still split. Over-centralization is obviously a problem, but so is a lack of centralization.

    The Kingdom could have possibly survived in its OTL borders without decentralization, but it would need to develop a healthy parliamentary democracy. Banning ethnic parties would backfire, so they should be tolerated. The state should be secular and not favor the Serbs, but it shouldn’t favor the minorities either.

    If decentralization with a “Banovina of Croatia” and a “Banovina of Slovenia” is necessary though, the borders should be drawn to favor Slovenia at the expense of Croatia. This would weaken the Croats, the greatest threat, and make Slovenia dependent on Belgrade for protection from the Croats.

    For Royal Yugoslavia, finding some accommodation with the Montenegrin royal family would also help, but isn’t strictly necessary. Maybe they could be demoted to Grand Duke and left as a figurehead, or left as a king and King Alexander can promote himself to Emperor.

    Bringing Bulgaria into Yugoslavia is rather difficult, and would probably require a PoD before the First World War. Maybe Austria-Hungary attacks the Balkan league during the First Balkan War, starting the Great War early with the entire Balkan League in the Entente. The experience of fighting alongside each other brings the members closer together. Maybe they recognize the value of linking their economies and form an economic union. Eventually this union becomes a full federation. If the union includes Greece though, it would be a Balkan Federation, not Yugoslavia.

    There was this event called the “Second World War” which was the main reason it didn’t survive. We can only speculate how the Kingdom would have ended up without the Second World War or any other major conflicts.
  8. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Yeah, ww2 really poisoned relations between the ethnic groups, with the Ustase regime in Croatia genociding Serbs. I beleive that set the groundwork for the implosion in the 90s. Preventing that is a good start.
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  9. PoorBoy Laborus Tardis

    Oct 16, 2005
    ~49°N; 123°W (±30′)
    I think the biggest challenge to keeping Yugoslavia together is not ethnic but economic: There's a big discrepancy between the parts formerly ruled by Austria (Slovenia and Croatia) and the parts formerly under the Ottomans (the rest) + Montenegro. Just before it broke up on the 1990s, tiny Slovenia alone was responsible for around 20 percent of the Federal economy.

    It's a long shot, but perhaps in an alt-ending to WWII, Federal Yugoslavia could somehow implement a micro-EU model, and raise the standards of living in Bosnia, Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia to at least the levels of Croatia. And when the citizens are somewhat content economically, they wouldn't care whether you're a Slovene, or Serb, or a Croat, just like most of the people of the EU right now generally don't care whether one's German or French or Italian.
  10. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Why are the former Austro Hungarian parts much wealthier than the former Ottoman parts? (Please don't let this turn into a "moslem bad" circlejerk)

    Also, one region being particularly wealthy isn't that big of an obstacle. For example, the Rhineland is the most wealthy and industrialized part of Germany, but that doesn't make Germany less of a succesful country.
  11. PoorBoy Laborus Tardis

    Oct 16, 2005
    ~49°N; 123°W (±30′)
    Austria considered Slovenia and Istria as being at the same level as Tyrol and Salzburg. They also invested heavily in infrastructure there since it was their main access to the sea.

    Yeah, but the Germans had the excuse of being 'one German nation over the centuries' as an excuse. They may have been split into many different states, but at least they were all Germans, and all locally ruled.

    Maybe Yugoslavia can somehow spin that Serbian, Croatian, Bosnia, and Montenegrin is one language, but that would be a tall order for a bunch of ethnicities divided and ruled by foreign powers over the centuries. In this case, prioritizing a common economic goal of prosperity would help put their ethnic differences at the back seat of their minds.
  12. Dan1988 Vamos abrir a porta da esperança!

    Feb 23, 2007
    ATL Royaume du Canada
    To be frank, AFAICT that was because in a lot of peripheral areas of the Ottoman Empire (Southeastern Europe in general isn't alone in this - Yemen, for example, is one area that falls into this) the Sublime Porte basically neglected them and only considered them valuable for its military value, so a lot of areas basically 'regressed' towards an agricultural existence with declining standards in health, in education, in the quality of its religious clergy (no matter the religion), etc. That's basically it - that and the Ottomans didn't really prepare for decolonization as it continued its decline (meaning less investment in raising up those standards). In that sense the ex-Ottoman areas are more similar to Greece, Albania, Romania, and Bulgaria then they are to, say, even Poland and Ukraine, in that they had to start from scratch with very little to fall back on except clientelist politics and constant interference from the Great Powers. Add to that a Serbian Orthodox Church which saw itself in the same light as, say, the Church of Greece or the Russian Orthodox Church (even though the Ecumenical Patriarchate considered such ethnophyletism as a heresy) and the general complexity and madness that is the Balkans with competing nationalist movements, each one claiming the territory of each other, and well, . . .
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  13. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Yeah, economic prosperity will certainly help for bridging the divides. Maybe have a world war in Europe with all south slavs on the same side for a unifying national myth as well?
  14. Seandineen Member

    Oct 20, 2005
    Restore the monarchy.
  15. Changundramon Well-Known Member

    Aug 4, 2015
    They started to get poisoned from the moment the 1. Yugoslavia was created. Serbs had imperial dreams long before that, and when the implementation came, it brought misery, and police violence. About 300 of the most radical Croats, helped by disgruntled Macedonians, formed the infamous Ustaše organization.
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  16. Triune Kingdom Well-Known Member

    Apr 6, 2018
    If we want Kingdom of Yugoslavia/First Yugoslavia to survive, perhaps the best thing would be to avoid a Coup which happened when Yugoslavia joined Axis in 1941. Without it, there is little reason for Invasion of Yugoslavia in April, and collapse that followed, which enabled Ante Pavelić and 200 of his idiots to come to power.

    One very important thing that happened in 1939, was the Cvetković-Maček Agreement which unified Croatian lands under one authority, and gave some autonomy to the Croatians. That was a step in a right direction, and while IOTL it came too late (some 20 years to late) to save the country, it was still a very positive development, especially since it was relatively open ended, which would perhaps allow for other ethnicities/nations to recieve their autonomy as well. If Yugoslavia manages to go through WW2 without getting invaded, that Agreement could become a basis of both federalization and democratization of the country during the Cold War.

    I am not saying that there is going to be nothing but good times ahead for Yugoslavia, after all two of the greatest dangers to Yugoslavia always were Croatian Separatism and Serbian Nationalism, but without the bloodletting and massacres which were commited during the WW2, relations between Serbs and Croats would be extremely better then they were IOTL.

    Would that state survive to the present day? I am not sure what would happen TBH. Royal Yugoslavia which has managed to get through the WW2 without getting invaded is something which is rather hard to imagine, but without the bad blood of the 40s in play, I do say that we could see a Kingdom of Yugoslavia sticking around for quite some time.
    Frankly, one of the best ways to do something along these lines would be Self Insert into King Aleksandar Karađorđević in 1918, when Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes was born. If SI plays his cards right, we could see a extremely different Yugoslavia then IOTL 1941, so even if it was invaded, it would not lead into a complete free-for-all as in OTL.
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  17. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Would the subdivisions look like? Say, some reformist with good intentions wants to disolve the old Serb vs Croat, by breaking up all the constituent countries within Yugoslavia into smaller provinces, like Istria, Dalmatia, Vojvodina, etc. Maybe some of the smaller ones like Montenegro can stay as one unit. Bulgaria would also have to be broken up if included. Would this all be helpful for unity and equality among all south slavs or would it backfire horribly?
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  18. Changundramon Well-Known Member

    Aug 4, 2015
    Territorial subdivisions are one thing, but creating regional identities is something else. I guess Istria and Dalmatia could be injected with strong regionalism. However, Istrian regionalism could bite Yugoslavia in the a**, since Italy could use it to her advantage.

    My own 2 ideas:

    The capital of 2. Yugoslavia must not be Belgrade. Sarajevo is best for reasons of strategic defensibility, and it gives neither of the biggest 2 ethnicities the advantage (IOTL, Bosniaks were/are the greatest fans of SFRY surviving). Skopje is an OK choice.

    Instead of creating a joint language between the Serbs and Croats, everyone should have their own, but make it so that children learn the language of other republics, instead of foreign languages. Yugoslavia was Communist anyway, and foreign languages were never taken seriously (my mother's time at school, for example).
  19. HistoricalArthropod Well-Known Member

    Feb 21, 2019
    Eh, Idk. Would creating a standard Yugoslav be any harder than the creation of standard German?
  20. Changundramon Well-Known Member

    Aug 4, 2015
    Do you mean a coinstructed language, in the mold of Esperanto or Slovio? It would be a historical precedent to have a conlang be the official language of a state. I guess if done right, it wouldn't reek of covert attempts at Serbian domination. Croats are traditionally fond of having their own language, and the mess created by the OTL Novi Sad Agreement added another grievance against the Serbs.