Nothing is more likely to disturb the peace of the world than the treatment which might in certain circumstances be meted out to minorities

НазваниеNothing is more likely to disturb the peace of the world than the treatment which might in certain circumstances be meted out to minorities
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Items on Autonomy, minority issues and Trianon

Edited by Sandor Balogh, Ph. D.,

Prof Emeritus

Contents of disk:

Autonomy and the New World Order 2

Bibliography 154

Appendix 159

Copenhagen Document 161

Lund Recommendation 177

The Goss Report 193

Appendix to the G. R. 198

Interview with Gross 200

Reply to Dietz and Stroschein 203

Vatican on Minority Rights 213

Europe’s Autonomy Solution 216

Federal Union of European Nationalities 220

Plan for settlement of Transnistrian Conflict 235

Intrastate Conflicts 245

Nuncio in minority issues 246

Prof. M. Samu on Selfdetermination 248

Sanctity of Borders under fire 258

Memorandum on Rumania’s Admission to Nato 259

The South Slav Quaestion 276

50,000 Hungatrian Martyrs 299

Transylvania: Balkan or Europe? 308

Institutum Pro Hominis Juribus (English) 321

“ “ “ (Hungarian) 339

Idoszeru-e Trianonrol Beszelni? 347

Beszed Zebegenyben 2001 jun. 4-en 349

Gross Report (Hungarian) 351

Kozlemeny – Meghivo 355

Szomszedaink a merlegen – szerb ortodoxia 358



A Solution To The Nationality Problem

Sandor Balogh, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus

7 Greenbush Avenue

East Greenbush, NY 12061

Phone: (518) 477-5476, fax: (518) 477-8647

Nothing ... is more likely to disturb the peace of the world than the treatment which might in certain circumstances be meted out to minorities...*

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE (printed on cover flop or on back cover)

The author has experienced a major conflict of cultures as he grew up in Communist Hungary, Hungary being part of Western Christian civilization, while Communism was the ruling ideology in Orthodox Russia. He had an opportunity to re-live and analyze this conflict scientifically when he did his research for his Doctoral Dissertation and developed his thesis about the importance of political culture. The author bases the following analysis and recommendation on his personal experience and his studies as a political scientist.

Hungary has traditionally been a historic crossroads between East and West, North and South, and between North-West and South East and at the edge of conflicting religious and political cultures, including Muslim and Christian, and more recently, Western and Orthodox Christian religious cultures. Hungary has also been at the dividing line between democracies and oriental despotism, two very different, in fact, opposed political cultures.

This clash of cultures effected him personally when he was imprisoned for his Christian views under the atheistic Communist regime from 1952 to 1955. After the Revolution of 1956 he escaped Hungary and took refuge in the USA as a freedom fighter. In the US he obtained a Ph.D. in Political Science from New York University, and was a college professor until his retirement a few years ago. He wrote his dissertation on the cultural differences and patterns in the communist countries of Central Europe, with a focus on the Hungarian Revolution of 1956.

In his private life he has been active in attempting to improve the human rights situation of his oppressed compatriots in the countries surrounding Hungary, and participated in several meetings of the Council for Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) as a Non Governmental Organization (NGO) representative. Therefore he is quite familiar with both the issues involved and possible remedies.

It should also be noted the issues involved are quite emotional on both sides. Although the author has considerable personal and professional interest in the region, the following essay will examine the causes and possible cures for this illness in as dispassioned and professional manner as it is possible under the circumstances and will attempt to be as objective a political scientist, emphasizing scientist should be. The reason that Hungary and problems affecting Hungarians is discussed more in the book than any other minority group is due to the facts that on the one hand, the author is more familiar with this situation, and on the other, the case of the Hungarian minorities could (and should) serve as a textbook example of how minorities are created in the political process, how treaties aimed to protect minorities have failed to do so, how peaceful and productive minorities are persecuted just for being different, how ineffective the international community is in protecting minorities, how the current system invites use of violence and terror in order to get attention, and finally, how important it is to put the minority issue and effective minority protections on the agenda of international forums and the United Nations.




Thanks, Apologies, and Hopes... 4

Introduction 5


Assimilation, Accommodation, and the Balkan Model? 10

New Switzerland ...or the Old Balkan in Slovakia? 14

World Peace or World Government? 19

The Kissinger Approach 23

The Political Culture Approach and the Cultural Fault Line 24


The Creation of the Nation State 32

Nationalities in Central Europe and the Boundary Issue 34

The Global Aspect 39

The Political and Legal Aspects 41


The Question of Responsibility 45

National Self-Determination 50

Is the Minority Issue a Domestic Concern? 55


Solutions that have failed. 63

The Concept of Self-Determination in International Law:

Recent Developments 68

The Flip Side of De-Colonization; Lessons to be Learned for the UN 81

Self-Determination and UN Authority 83

The OSCE Position on Self-Determination 86

The US, Territorial Status Quo, and the Balkan Problem 92


Autonomy in Theory 101

Autonomy and Unitary v. Federal Systems of Government 105

World Government, Sovereignty and Minority Rights on Collision Course 110


Autonomy and Collective Rights for Minorities in Historic Hungary 113

Autonomy in Other Countries 118

The Aaland Islands and the Majority’s Fears 120

The Rhaetians in Switzerland 122

Gagauzian Autonomy in Moldova 123

The Basque minority and Catalonia in Spain 125

Autonomous Regions in Italy 128

Separatism and Terror 133


Some Guidelines for Minority Autonomy in Central Europe 135

Hungarian Autonomy proposals in Serbia 139

Hungarian Autonomy Demands in Rumania 140

Hungarian Autonomy Proposals in Slovakia and the Sub-Carpathian Reg. 146


How Could it be done Without Violence? 148


1. Proposed UN Resolution on Minorities

2. Copenhagen Document

3. FUEN Model Proposal on Autonomy.


1. Railroad Lines and Trianon Boundaries in Hungary

* * * * * *

THANKS... to several people for the idea and assistance in preparing this book. First, it was Magyarodi Szabolcs who first suggested that I write an essay on Autonomy, and he supplied the initial resources that he had accumulated. Next, thanks to my wife, who has put up with my working often until after midnight on this project. Also thanks to Laszlo Pasztor who have read and commented on some of the early versions, and supplied some current reports and news articles. Last but not least, thanks to Gertrud, the HVCC Interlibrary Loan librarian who had patiently obtained books and articles that I have requested to give adequate and up-to-date documentation.

APOLOGIES, first, for writing a book when I was asked to write only an essay. Second, as several parts have been up-dated as additional material came to my attention, perhaps the unity of the book is not as smooth as I would have liked. If some ideas are repeated, sometimes it is deliberate for emphasis, or to make sure that the reader remembers some important points. At other times, it is inexcusable sloppiness, except, that I had to finally finish the project because Szabolcs was ready to publish it. The current version is about the sixth “final draft,” and about twenty pages longer than the fifth which is another 40 pages longer than first final draft that I was not going to change, until I got some new information from Gertrud, Laszlo, or some other friend. But now this is it! When one writes about living histroy, the story will never end, and in this case, the story will not end until every minority on Earth lives under democratic governance that will eliminate all minority problems.

AND HOPES, that the project will promote understanding, improved minority relations, and both regional peace in Central Europe and global peace on our planet Earth.

I respectfully DEDICATE this work to the millions who have suffered or are still suffering under oppression as minorities.


There are two reasons for writing this book. The first is practical and political, the other is theoretical and political. The practical reason is the attempt to promote peace that is punctuated with violent local skirmishes in various trouble spots in the world in an effort to realize the noble goal of national self-determination. The theoretical is to clarify the concept of and the reasons for “self-determination,” Finally, the political reasons are (a) to take the discussion outside the legal profession and introduce practical and theoretical considerations, and (b) to argue that it is time for the governments comprising the United Nations to step in, define self-determination, and establish a new mechanism for the 21st Century that can facilitate peacefully the right to self-determination.

Of the several dozen trouble spots three of the most critical at this writing in the late 1990’s are Bosnia and Kosovo, two provinces of the former Yugoslavia, Israel in the Middle East, and the Congo, the former Dutch colony.

Bosnia is a small country that few people outside Central Europe heard of until the assassination of Austrian Crown Prince Ferdinand in Sarajevo, Bosnia’s capital, in 1914. It has received attention again since ethnic violence erupted there just a few years ago.

Medieval Bosnia was nominally a banat (client state) of Hungary, but by the 13th century it enjoyed autonomy under its rulers, the bans. The Ottoman Turks conquered the area in 1463. As Turkish power waned in the 19th century Bosnia's Muslim nobility repeatedly rebelled against the sultan; a general revolt in 1875-76 was supported by Serbia, which claimed Bosnia and Herzegovina as part of its territory. After the revolt had been quelled, the Congress of Berlin (1878) allowed Austria-Hungary to occupy the two provinces, which remained nominally part of the Ottoman Empire. Austria-Hungary's outright annexation of Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1908 further increased tensions with Serbia, and the Bosnian Serbs agitated against Austrian rule. In June 1914, Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb, assassinated the Austrian archduke FRANZ FERDINAND in Sarajevo. The resulting conflict between Serbia and Austria-Hungary quickly escalated into World War I. Thus, while Bosnia is a distinct region and Bosnians are a distinct ethnic group, Bosnia had never enjoyed independence with her own sovereign government until the recent break-up of the artificial state of Yugoslavia.

Kosovo is also a province of the former Yugoslavia and now Serbia. Kosovo, having some 90 per cent Albanian population, once was an autonomous province, but its autonomy was withdrawn several years ago by the Serbian dominated government of Yugoslavia. Kosovo remained in the romp-Yugoslavia, and legally is part of Serbia.

Israel, now incorporating the former Palestine, is also a major trouble spot, due to the conflicting claims of the Arab and Jewish population of the area.

Finally, the multi-ethnic Congo is a former colony of France, and later of Belgium. It has been independent since 1960, but had been involved in almost constant turmoil, including secession of Katanga in 1961, which had been condemned by the UN, and several bloody inter-ethnic conflicts. The Congo question is still far from being settled at this writing.

The conflicts in both Israel and Bosnia are frustrating, because all of the traditional means of diplomacy, including threat of force, or when diplomacy fails, even actual use of force fails to achieve peaceful coexistence of the different ethnic and religious groups within one community or even one state. Much has been said and written about Israel, while Bosnia is interesting only to specialists in foreign affairs, or to those who hail from that part of the world, and to the families of those soldiers who are there, exposed to daily danger, to maintain the fragile peace.

The tragedy behind the Bosnian conflict is that, just like in Israel, on the one hand there are conflicting ethnic and/or cultural/religious communities involved, and on the other hand one side uses a territorial argument, the other has human rights grievances, so there is little common ground for a solution and neither side is able and willing to compromise. I believe that as far as the diagnosis is concerned, the Middle East situation and the Balkan conflict have important similarities. As for the prescription, there might be different factors that make the recommendation for one conflict unworkable in the other, yet, the principles of a possible solution must be the same not only in these two conflicts, but in most of them where ethnicity plays a role.

Unfortunately, Bosnia is not alone in that part of the world that include peoples with conflicting religious and cultural traditions. Except for Hungary and Albania, the other countries of Central Europe all contain sizable minorities who belong to different ethnic groups and/or religions. It is only a matter of time before the conflict in some of these countries also erupt into violence, if no precaution is taken. Even without violence, however, the conflict absorbs and diverts precious national resources from economic and cultural development that would improve the lot of both the majority and the minorities.

There is a growing concern, arguing from the humanitarian side, for urgent official action to end the violence and bloodshed. An essay of two scholars, associated with the Brookings Institute, was published in the recent issue of FOREIGN AFFAIRS on the world refugee problem and claim a total of over twenty million people are refugees within their own country, due to “armed conflict, internal strife, and systematic violations of human rights, ... constituting the newest global crisis.”1 Their conclusion is that

(U)nless accompanied by steps to address the causes of crisis, military solutions are only temporary. Humanitarian assistance alone can prolong conflicts. Conflict and internal displacement can be resolved only through a broader commitment to the peaceful management and mediation of disputes....

Conflicts that are allowed to fester can produce mass displacement and leave political and economic scars that damage the economic well-being and political security of neighboring states, regions, and the international system as a whole. The world community cannot let this newest challenge go unchecked.2

This situation that Cohen and Deng call a “global crisis” is caused by ethnic, religious or cultural divisions and conflicts within countries, and the lack of effective means and international rules to allow diverse groups a sufficient degree of independence and self-determination in their linguistic, cultural, or religious matters.

We might point out here that modern political science is discovering that political culture is often more important than economic factors. It becomes more and more obvious that for many people ideas are more important than economic or material factors, or even a full stomach. The terrorists forego a quiet job and peaceful home-life for the dangerous mission to advance the cause and the perceived interest of their nation or religion.

Therefore the thesis of this book is that peace and order suffers, and even world peace might be endangered when political, territorial, economic and perhaps other considerations are given preference over and at the expense of ethnic, linguistic and cultural, especially religious factors. History shows that both creating countries with culturally diverse population like the ones already mentioned, and dividing ethnic groups, like Germans, Koreans, Vietnamese, to mention only a few examples, into separate states under different political and ideological systems, lead to conflict and even wars. The folly of both methods has been proven repeatedly by modern history.

This global crisis does not even include the sufferings of tens of millions of people who are either too week or too meek to start armed rebellion and quietly suffer the most insidious economic discrimination, attacks on their culture and their values, and often even on their physical person and may even be threatened with biological elimination.

The second reason is that while all this domestic violence has been taking place, the concept of self-determination has ripened for consideration by the United Nations. Although Hurst Hannum, in his monumental and ground breaking work on autonomy complained in 1990 that “(S)overeignty, self-determination, and human rights .... are terms of international law, although to date international lawyers have expressed little interest in analyzing them ...”3 the situation was not that bleak even then. But, probably due to the volume of violence caused by internal strife since the break up of the Soviet Union, there seems to have been an explosion of essays written on the subject. On 1997 Ved P. Nanda, one of the foremost experts in the world on international law, was able to list some twenty four major works in the footnote to substantiate the claim that “(t)he literature of self-determination is vast.”4 But even this list is just the tip of the iceberg. The literature on self-determination is so vast that it is practically impossible to utilize it fully for a project like this one. But the general tone of the books and articles is that the time has come for an official and authoritative definition of the concept and the standards, and for the creation of an effective machinery for the peaceful implementation of this right.

While humanitarian groups are busy helping the millions of victims of internal violence, and international lawyers and other experts have been honing the concept of self-determination, the United Nations miserably fails in her responsibility to outlaw and effectively prevent “future Kosovos, “ wholesale human rights violations by governments that should provide protection to its minorities. The UN seems to focus on using military threat to prevent violence, instead of taking bold and decisive action to nip ethnic violence in the bud by setting up an effective mechanism to provide for minority rights.

Therefore the conclusion of this book will be an urgent appeal to the leaders of governments to bring the matter of self-determination, both internal and external, before the UN General Assembly and pass a resolution that will effectively solve the problem and establishes a peaceful mechanism to provide for the implementation of the by now internationally recognized right to self-determination. It will be suggested that the key to world peace is in the hands of the United Nations in not only permitting or even mandating autonomy and/or secession when warranted, but also guaranteeing that granting autonomy would not lead to secession, if the autonomy is granted and protected in good faith and leads to democracy. This would satisfy the minorities on the one hand, and should allay the fears of the majority population by providing higher requirements for secession than for autonomy.

The author believes that the best way to proceed in our study is by borrowing the methodology from medicine. For the best treatment the doctor needs a family history to establish the role of possible genetic and environmental or cultural factors, then proceeds with the examination and diagnosis, followed by the prescription, and finally, a treatment plan, choosing the best one from several alternatives, taking into consideration possible harmful side-effects. The prognosis depends on so many factors that it will not even be attempted at this point.

To follow this plan, it is felt by the author that of the several approaches, political science is the most appropriate. Hannum explains that international lawyers “have been content to leave the technical definitions (of self-determination) to the pens of academics and their political implications to politicians.”5 Thus, the present work is an attempt, using the political science approach, to create a bridge tying the work of these three groups together and facilitate finding a solution within a legal framework that follows the definitions of academicians, motivates the politicians, and satisfies the human rights advocates.

First I shall discuss the symptoms in some multi-disciplinary detail, using some concepts and conclusions from sociology, anthropology, and state of the art political science to show where we are coming from and where are we headed.

It should be noted that scientific disciples, like almost everything in life, undergo certain evolution, and what may have been modern concept or theory some fifty years ago, is outdated at the turn of the new millennium. Some of the most important such changes include the development of the concept of human rights from the rights of the individual to collective rights and the right of self-determination, and of national sovereignty, the basis of international politics. The modern concept of human rights is accepted more and more even by politicians--or at least the legislative branch of the U.S.

Hurst Hannum wrote that “human rights norms are widely accepted and give legitimacy to U.S. and UN actions.... U.S. law requires them to be a primary concern of U.S. foreign policy.” The establishment of the famous MFN, the Most Favored Nation category, for example, explicitly discriminates among countries based mainly on their human rights record. 6 This was not the case a few decades ago! 7 But MFN in itself is not sufficient, because many governments would rather forego the advantages of being an MFN country that improve its human rights policy. The former Rumanian dictator Ceausescu openly refused even to apply for MFN status when it was made clear that in order to receive it his government would have to improve its human rights policies and practices.

This is one reason while international lawyers might feel uncomfortable to get into the debate, because when boundaries and territory were the dominant factors, it was easy to pass laws and protect territories. Also, when the emphasis was on economic factors, experts could easily assess damages. But when it comes to religious freedom or cultural rights, it is not easy to draw legal boundaries. Ideally the conflict should be solved with social means. But it seems that social means are inadequate for ethnic conflicts, as we are finding it out even here in the United States. So international lawyers are more and more willing to jump into unknown waters and chart a course for the peaceful resolution of ethnic conflicts through legal means, including coercion. The direction of evolution is clearly in this direction.

In the following there will be much discussion of ethnic groups and nationalism.8 Therefore, we should be aware of an important distinction made by His Holiness Pope Pius XI, between two kinds of nationalism. After explaining that “nations were made by God,” he stated that “there is ... room for fair and moderate nationalism, which is the breeding ground of many virtues, but beware of exaggerated nationalism as of a veritable curse.”9 It would be unfair to characterize the minorities as always standing for fair and moderate nationalism and the majorities as always representing exaggerated nationalism, but there would be much less conflict and violence in the world today, if both the majorities and in some cases even the minorities have shown more moderation. The majority regimes' and populations' policy of “ethnic cleansing” and “forced assimilation” along with the radical demands of small groups of ultra-nationalists like the French-Canadian terrorists, are examples of exaggerated nationalism endangering or even destroying moderate nationalism.

The focus of the argument will be on the minority issues in non-colonial countries, especially in East Central Europe and the Carpathian Basin where many countries also have sizable ethnic, cultural or religious minorities.

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