Monday, June 2, 2008

Week 11 - Croatia

This week we'll be studying Croatia.

The capital of Croatia is Zagreb.

Croatia is shaped like a crescent or a horseshoe, which flanks its neighbors Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro. To the north lie Slovenia and Hungary. Its southern and western sides border the Adriatic Sea, and it shares a sea border with Italy in the Gulf of Trieste. Its mainland territory is split in two non-contiguous parts by the short coastline of Bosnia and Herzegovina around Neum.

The lands that today comprise Croatia were part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until the close of World War I. In 1918, the Croats, Serbs, and Slovenes formed a kingdom known after 1929 as Yugoslavia. Following World War II, Yugoslavia became a federal independent Communist state under the strong hand of Marshal Tito. Although Croatia declared its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991, it took four years of sporadic, but often bitter, fighting before occupying Serb armies were mostly cleared from Croatian lands. Under UN supervision, the last Serb-held enclave in eastern Slavonia was returned to Croatia in 1998.

Pictures of Croatia:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Did you know that Croatia controls most land routes from Western Europe to the Aegean Sea and Turkish Straits? Talk about potential for influencing Western European states’ import/export business.

Most Adriatic Sea islands lie off the coast of Croatia – about 1,200 islands, islets, ridges, and rocks. That seems like a big number to me, considering the length of the coastline – 5790 Km (about 3474 miles), that’s about 48 island, islets, ridges, and rocks per kilometer!

Croatia’s legal system is based on the Austro-Hungarian law system with Communist influences. Hmmm…what was the Austro-Hungarian legal system like? From what I’ve been able to gather is that it was based on civil law (as opposed to natural law like in England for example).

Judges for the Supreme Court are appointed for 8-year terms by the Judicial Council of the Republic, which is elected by the Assembly (or Sabor), the unicameral legislative branch of the Croatian government. How does that differ from how Supreme Court justices are appointed in the US? Our Supreme Court justices are nominated by the President of the United States and confirmed by the Senate. The appointment is “during good behavior”, and terminates at death, resignation, retirement, or conviction on impeachment.