Realm of the Black Mountain: A History of Montenegro by Elizabeth Roberts - review by Norman Stone

Norman Stone

Mice That Roared

Realm of the Black Mountain: A History of Montenegro


Hurst & Co 521pp £25

The fall of European Communism began and ended with a roaring of mice. Estonia declared ‘sovereignty’ in September 1988 and started a process that brought down the USSR. Slovenia in 1991 did much the same as far as Yugoslavia was concerned, and the whole business came to an end last year when Montenegro declared independence. Montenegro had been a part (and, as this book shows, a part more generally enthusiastic than others) of Communist Yugoslavia, and her defection had a significance out of all proportion to her size and weight.

What was it about nationalism, even micro-nationalism, that spelt the end of Communism? Almost every commentator on Communism, including this writer, swallowed its propaganda and thought that the nationality problem (which from Ireland to Flanders to the Basque Country is, in Western Europe, a persistent bore) had been solved, at

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RLF - March