The Balkan Peniunsula is comprised of the countries of
Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of
Macedonia, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Albania, Greece,
Romania, Bulgaria and European Turkey. Balkan history is characterized
by military and political strife. Because of it’s crusial location
between Asia and Europe it has been conquered and re-conquered by
countless nations. Seeking trade routes to the middle east, many
eastern European countries have set up ports there.
Within the past ten years Yugoslavia has undergone major
political changes. In 1991 and 1992 four Yugoslav republics, Slovenia,
Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, declared their independence from
Yugoslavia. Serbia and Montenegro then formed the Federal Republic of
Yugoslavia. After Yugoslavia began skirmishing with ethnic Albanian
rebels in Kosovo at the end of 1998, NATO forces began airstrikes in
late March, 1999. Caoncluding eleven weeks of bombing, the Yugoslav
government allowed a NATO peacekeeping force into Kososvo.