The use of ethnicity to define political life in the Balkans has gone from being a useful analytical vector to a means to discredit manifestations of political change since the wars of the 1990s. Recent municipal elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina have demonstrated this unit of analysis to be faulty.

Draško Stanivuković celebrates his victory at the Banja Luka municipal elections on November 17th 2020 (via direktno.rs)

The armed conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina marked the minds of Western audiences in many ways. If Yugoslavia seemed likely to disintegrate, a prolonged armed conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina seemed unlikely. Footage from the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo showed a populace that seemed united, copiously displaying the fact…


The international community condemns “Europe’s last dictator”, but its rhetoric rings hollow as another strengthens his grip on power.

Aleksandr Grigoryevich Lukashenko and Milo Đukanović (via glas-javnosti.rs)
Belarus’ Aleksandr Grigoriyevich Lukashenko and Montenegro’s Milo Đukanović (via glas-javnosti.rs)

Over the past few weeks, Western media outlets seem to have re-discovered the existence of Belarus. The country that is largely known for its plentiful harvests of potatoes and its proximity to the Russian Federation has suddenly been thrust on the front page of all major newspapers and websites — from the Guardian to the Washington Post. For the first time since he came to power in 1994, Aleksandr Lukashenko’s firm rule over the country seems to be seriously challenged. What…


In the aftermath of a scandal directly linking the country’s political leadership with corrupt activities, an unprecedented number of protesters swarmed the streets of Montenegro’s capital Podgorica. What can one expect now?

Before President Donald Trump’s unceremonious shove of its Prime Minister at a 2017 NATO summit, Montenegro was largely known to Western audiences for its luxurious resorts and majestic mountainous highlands. Among the citizens of the five other countries that once made up the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY), however, Montenegro is well known as a hub for illicit trade and corruption. …

Pavle Bozalo

Undergraduate student in Political Science at the University of Ottawa. I write about Eastern European political issues and culture.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store