Why does this country have three presidents at the same time?

  The Presidium of Bosnia and Herzegovina consists of three people, who are Muslims, Croats and Serbs. The three presidential positions must not only be allocated “by clan”, but also by “divisional” elections. To put it simply, “you choose yours, I choose mine, and do not interfere with each other. When the three are selected, they will make a pile and take turns sitting in the village.”
  If the Balkan Peninsula is the “powder keg” of Europe, then the small Balkan country – Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosnia and Herzegovina) can be regarded as the “tinderbox” of this barrel of gunpowder.
   The events of Sarajevo in 1914 led directly to the First World War. The Bosnian War from 1992 to 1995 was the largest local war in Europe after World War II.
   Bosnia and Herzegovina’s “peculiarity” is not limited to this. Careful study will reveal that this country does not have its own main ethnic group, and is a country that was artificially “patched together” under a specific historical environment. What is even more peculiar is that this small country has “three presidents”, truly realizing “one country, three princes”.
   Why does Bosnia and Herzegovina have so many presidencies?
  The civil war in
   Bosnia and Herzegovina The drastic changes in the Soviet Union and the East, the collapse of the bipolar pattern, directly led to the disintegration of the Federation of Yugoslavia. Slovenia, Croatia, and Macedonia declared their independence one after another, while Serbia and Montenegro still insisted on retaining the federation, which led to the intensification of conflicts among all parties and the outbreak of civil war in Yugoslavia. Unlike other countries, the fate of Bosnia and Herzegovina is more complicated due to the lack of main ethnic groups.
   The Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina hoped to merge with the newly independent Croatian state, so they advocated the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina. At this time, the Muslims in Bosnia and Herzegovina accounted for 44% of the total population of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which made the Muslims have a strong sense of locality and considered themselves to be the real main ethnic group in Bosnia and Herzegovina, so they also attempted to establish an independent Bosnian state. The Bosnian Serbs opposed independence and advocated uniting with Serbia and Montenegro to jointly maintain the “basic plate” of the Yugoslav federation.
   In March 1992, the Croats and the Muslims launched an independence referendum and unilaterally declared the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina when most Serbs boycotted the vote.
   This caused strong dissatisfaction among the Serbs, and the civil war in Bosnia and Herzegovina broke out.
   The Serb offensive was swift. By 1993, the Serbs had controlled more than 70% of the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina. At this time, the Croat and Muslim armed forces also fought infighting and fell into a scuffle.
   Seeing that the whole of Bosnia and Herzegovina is about to be controlled, the European and American powers do not want to see Yugoslavia “resurging”. On the one hand, they reconcile the conflicts between the Croats and the Muslims, so that the two sides can form a “Muk Federation”; on the other hand, the Serbs accidentally bombed civilians As an excuse, NATO was launched to intervene in the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   Under the intervention of NATO’s powerful armed forces, in October 1995, all parties in Bosnia and Herzegovina ceased fighting. In December of the same year, the parties to the civil war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, mediated by the international community, negotiated in Dayton, Ohio, USA, and finally signed the “Dayton Agreement” to reach a compromise.
  The formation of the pattern of “one country, three publics”
   According to the principles of the “Dayton Agreement”, Bosnia and Herzegovina has the characteristics of “one country, two entities, and three constitutional nations”.
   The so-called one country is to define the borders of the newly independent state of Bosnia and Herzegovina in accordance with the borders of Bosnia and Herzegovina stipulated by the former Yugoslav Federation, maintain a national subject and maintain the unity of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   The two entities refer to respecting the objective situation formed by the warring parties during the civil war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and determine that the new state is composed of two political entities: the Republic of Srpska, the Muslim and Croat federations.
   Each of the two entities has a complete national system, including the president, the prime minister and various ministries, parliaments, central banks, courts and other national institutions, as well as independent armed forces.
   The three constitutional nationalities recognize the equal status of Muslims, Croats and Serbs at the constitutional level, and try to maintain the balance of interests of the three nationalities.
   It is precisely because of this principle that in order to prevent any one of the three ethnic groups from holding the presidency for a long time, Bosnia and Herzegovina adopted the collective head of state system and established the Presidium of Bosnia and Herzegovina to exercise the powers of the head of state.
   The presidium consists of three people, including Muslims, Croats and Serbs. Because the rotating chairman of the presidium is also habitually called the “president”, this has created a peculiar political scene of “one country, three princes” in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   The three presidential positions must not only be allocated “by clan”, but also by “divisional” elections. To put it simply, “you choose yours, I choose mine, and do not interfere with each other. When the three are selected, they will make a pile and take turns sitting in the village.” After the election is over, the number of votes of the three presidents will be compared, and the one with the most votes will be the first rotating chairman of the current presidium.
   The diplomatic powers of the President of Bosnia and Herzegovina are in name only. The most critical military powers are actually vested only in the entities, and the three presidents can only coordinate military operations with the consent of the entities. Armies of different entities are not allowed to cross the border even without the consent of the opposing entity. This actually tacitly acquiesced to the division of the national army of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   Even more troublesome is that on top of this decentralized and weak central government, there is also a “foreign emperor” who controls the “government”.
   According to the “Dayton Agreement”, after the war, the United Nations, the World Bank, NATO and other international organizations and the United States, Britain, Germany, France, Russia, Japan and other countries formed the Bosnia and Herzegovina Peace Council and its Executive Committee, and sent senior representatives to be stationed in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Black, overseeing the implementation of the Dayton Accords. The high representative has been confirmed by the UN Security Council that he has the power to intervene and remove officials at all levels in the administration and officials of the Bosnian government.
  The unification of the “bulk” country has a long way to go.
   This “balanced system” has indeed eased the conflicts between the three ethnic groups in a short period of time and maintained the stability of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   But behind this representative system based on “ethnic sovereignty”, it is not the “people” but the “ethnic groups” that determine the operation of the government. “Ethnic sovereignty” is not only detrimental to cultivating a unified national consciousness, on the contrary, it will make the three nationalities continue to strengthen their own national consciousness and weaken their sense of identity with the unified country of Bosnia and Herzegovina. At the same time, the interference of foreign forces is not conducive to the growth of the national consciousness of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   This “reverse” effect is also reflected in the current proportion of the three ethnic groups. According to the most recent census, Muslims account for 50.1%, Serbs 30.8%, Croats 15.4% and other ethnic groups 3.7%. Many Serbs and Croats choose to immigrate to their home countries, and the Muslims’ “local awareness” has increased, hoping to maintain the unity of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
   Bosnia and Herzegovina, a country with its own “bulk” attribute, has a long way to go to realize national integration and national unity.

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