From the "Balkan Butcher" to the "main factor of peace and stability" -- what was the role of the international community in the disintegration of ex-Yugoslavia? What were the particular roles of USA, Austria, germany, France, and Russia?
Firstly, whatever the real role of the "international community," it is beyond doubt that it was nothing liek what was presented to the people of Serbia by the government, or the opposition, at the time. This may be the ideal place to mention the guiding thought that "you should not ascribe to malice what can be explained by simple stupidity and/or incompetence." After almost a decade living in the United Kingdom I can bear witness to the fact that both the people and the government here posses an alarming level of naivety and inability to deal with the "Balkan mentality." Much, much, more than there is favouritism towards any side of any dispute. Also important to mention is the significant impact of well executed advertising campaign, and there should be no doubt whose such campaign has been more effective in the past 20 years. Just as the "West" didn't quiet get "our" problem, Serbian government didn't quite "get" what kind of propaganda works. As opposed to Croatia and Slovenia, for example. Unfortunately, this still seems to be the case today.