It was supposed to be a minnesår. In Paris he worked construction around the clock in order to catch the complete La Grande Arche to the celebration of the French revolution tvåhundraårsdag. The timetable kept. When world leaders gathered for the g-7 meeting on 14 July 1989 in the business district of La Défense was the magnificent arc de triomphe inaugurated.
the Celebration came, however. The G7-the meeting was overshadowed by the chinese tanks, which a few weeks before the massakrerat demonstrators in tiananmen square in Beijing. And shortly thereafter opened the Hungary border to Austria. Who cared about the history when the story is now played out in real time on the tv? The series of events which followed, and which culminated with the fall of the berlin wall in november, was Timothy Garton Ash the appointment in 1989 to the best year in the history of Europe.
Probably, he is right. In retrospect, we know that the cold war came to an end, the days of arms races acute existential threat to the whole of humanity ceased, half a dozen dictatorships gave place to democratic market economies and the crucial obstacle to european integration were razed.
in 1989 disneyfierats. No, no one thought, really, that the story had been exhausted, and the world went into a kantiansk eternal peace. No, not Francis Fukuyama himself believed it. And no, there was no naivety in the face of the difficulties of establishing democracy and the rule of law in countries without such experiences.
on the Contrary. The concern for the resurgence of nationalism was already in 1989 as tangible as the joy over the fall of communism. 1989 actors was very well aware of the forces which were set in motion. If anything, underestimated the strength of the demokratiseringsrörelsen, as when George HW Bush preferred Jaruzelski as a Polish president; who would think that dissidents like Walesa and Havel were able to control a country?
more than two weeks before the G7 meeting, we celebrated another memorial, in another part of Europe. On 28 June, a million people at Gazimestan monument, about three or four miles outside Pristina, to celebrate the sexhundraårsminnet of the mythic battle of Kosovo Polje in 1389 when the ottoman army finally defeated the medieval Serbian kingdom. Where was Slobodan Milosevic, one of the most explicit nationalist speeches that had been held by a european senior politicians since the second world war.
of the several crucial step on the path towards the disintegration of Yugoslavia. But it did not happen in a vacuum.
the Year before had civil war broken out in the Ussr, between the republics of Armenia and Azerbaijan. The conflict concerning the Armenian-dominated enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh belonged to Azerbaijan. For the leadership in Moscow was the conflict initially incomprehensible. In the materialist toolkit fit no tools with which ethnic conflicts could be analyzed. But the power of nationalist processes could not be mistaken. Therefore, the Politburo on 9 november, the day when the wall fell, to devote all his attention to the unrest in Estonia. English the fates had already stopped caring about.
at the same time, the state-orchestrated nationalist repression in the increasingly pressured the socialist states of america. The Swedish Lucia-the decision, tvärstoppet in refugee policy in december 1989, triggered for example by the influx of refugees of ethnic turks from Bulgaria, who left the country since the Bulgarian regime intensified its repression. But it was motivated also by a fear of what was to come, in terms of the displacements, in the case that the Soviet union collapsed in ethnic tensions.
in 1989 symbolizes, therefore, at the same time, both the liberalism of victory and the resurgence of nationalism.
The ideals hailed in Kosovo on 28 June and in Paris on July 14, is logically and morally inconsistent. You can't simultaneously affirm both the universal and nationalist ideals. Milosevic's speech on the afternoon should be read not least by those who believe that the sweden democrats ' ”victory or death”rhetoric devoid of ideological relevance. Here can be found the world view that three decades later unites all the nationalistpartier in Europe.
also how nationalism and liberalism can sometimes pull in the same direction, albeit temporarily. As in the democratic självständighetskamperna in the Baltic states or in the återföreningskrav that followed as soon as the regime in the GDR collapsed. Nationalism was crucial to Estonia today is a well-functioning democracy. But it also contributed to the unjustifiable discrimination of russians in the 1990s.
the Face of the thirty year anniversary of 1989, we should be aware that this year marks the culmination of a process which had been running since at least a decade - the removal of dictatorships across Southern europe in the 1970s, the Solidarity breakthrough, the dissidents ' methodical erosion of communist legitimacy - and then lost momentum already a few years into the 1990s. The resurgence of nationalism were the start of an era as we still are in the middle of.
the Tension between these processes is what we now call the kulturkrig.