Country Listing

Yugoslavia Table of Contents



The history of the Yugoslav nations and nationalities is full of foreign invasion and subjugation. The Ottoman Empire, Habsburg Dynasty, and Nazi Germany in turn dominated Yugoslav territories to a greater or lesser extent for most the last 500 years (see Histories of the Yugoslav Peoples to World War I , ch. 1). Times of relative security and independence resulted from an overall strategic balance among great powers or superpowers in Europe. However, the People's Liberation Army and Partisan Detachments of Yugoslavia, commonly known as the Partisans (see Glossary), were an important part of the Allied effort in World War II. Under Tito the Partisans were largely responsible for the liberation of the country; after liberation they organized well enough to control Yugoslavia politically. The tenacious struggle of the Partisans established a proud and heroic military tradition that extended long into the postwar era. The National Liberation War of 1941-45, as Yugoslav sources called it, remained the central frame of reference for discussing military affairs in 1990.

Data as of December 1990