A • About this blog

By Jan Oberg
August 2014


Project owner and participants

The Transnational Foundation for Peace and Future Research, TFF, in Lund, Sweden is the owner of this project on Yugoslavia and of this blog/site.

It contains written works of three leading peace researchers (and friends), Johan Galtung (1930-), Jan Oberg (1951-) and Håkan Wiberg (1942-2010) on the subject of former Yugoslavia – What Should Have Been Done? It contains their complete* production from 1991 to the present day on that subject.

The publication of the site/blog and book happens in co-operation between Johan Galtung, the founder of Transcend and Jan Oberg, TFF with the latter being the blog’s editor and publisher.


The blog’s materials

The larger part of the materials here have been published in books, reports, journals, magazines, etc but some have also served more as project or seminar papers and thus have not been published before. In a few cases, particularly articles by Wiberg, the exact time when the article was written could not be established. Wiberg had made all his contributions available before he died in July 2010, but all were not dated.

It is a summary of about 20 years of writings based on the authors’ combined 130+ man years of experience with and in former Yugoslavia supplemented by their extensive knowledge and training in peace and conflict research in general over even more years.

The blog contains the equivalent of between 2.000 and 2.500 A4 pages.


Transparency – all published as it was originally, no changes made

The authors have decided to make everything* they wrote available to students, media, decision-makers, civil society activists, area experts and other colleagues in the hope of stimulating a debate on what was so counterproductive in the international so-called community’s conflict management.

Furthermore, TFF and TRANSCEND are know for a pro-peace stance, for producing not only analyses and criticism but also making peace proposals. Thus the title: “What should have been done”  instead to transform the old country in a more benign way and with better results than we witnessed when it hapened and what we see today.

In summary, this is a mega-report on a twenty-year’s research and policy effort. It includes no brushed-up views and no articles by the authors have been excluded deliberately. Purely editorial and language improvements have been made by blog editor Jan Oberg.

No content of any article has been changed, nothing has been shortened, no parts left out.

By this the three authors want to enable the visitor/reader to see, for instance, where they went wrong and where their predictions we moderately to very precise in light of what is known today, many years later.


The aims and – why not a book?

Several attempts have been made during the project time to condense  the material into one large book. The authors belong to a generation in which book learning and book publishing was central. It no longer is – and there was anyhow no way one could bring the richness of these analyses down to about 10% of the original size.

Secondly, book lives are short whereas a blog lives, in principle, forever. Third, a blog is accessible all over the world; books may be difficult to find after a few years. Fourth, books are linear constructions – cover to cover – a blog permits a much more creative presentation, cross-reading in time and space – and better search options than a book index.

Our overriding wish is to give students worldwide an opportunity to study what we believe is a quite unique and comprehensive analysis – with constructive proposals – of an international conflict. A series of books published by an academic publishing house would end up costing a fortune – and anyhow yield no or only a symbolic income to its authors.

This blog is freely accessible, anywhere and anytime to anyone. That suits us because we believe this blogged project report has value for the future understanding of international conflicts and conflict (mis)management – and not only because of our production but because – as we maintain – the conflicts in and around Yugoslavia was and remains a world-impacting turning point – game changer – to a larger extent than perhaps any other post-1945 conflict.


Please use the materials

You are welcome, indeed encouraged, to make links to articles or reproduce any text here but only provided you indicate the source, TFF’s copyright, the date of the article and its author(s). And please send us info and/or a link to where it can be found to TFF@transnational.org.


© TFF – Transnational Foundation 2014


*) There may be some 10-20 manuscripts written predominantly in the 1990s lost or in archives somewhere and a few that are published elsewhere but have been technically impossible to reproduce in this blog. For some manuscripts written on outdated software or typewriter, we are still working on making the available here.

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