June 17, 2003

Brcko Dispatch Great news from

Brcko Dispatch

Great news from a Bosnian town that many feared would be a focal point for renewed bloodshed given its strategic location in Bosnia (control of the town, and so the Brcko corridor, would in effect cut Republika Srpska in two).

Key grafs: "The lesson of Brkco, Mr. Wheeler said, is that would-be nation-builders should install a powerful interim administrator, who is unafraid of defying the local political bosses. With a whip and some cash in hand, this proconsul can override ethnic loyalties and turn local attention to establishing the rule of law and business-friendly policies.

Henry L. Clarke, an American diplomat who became Brcko's third supervisor in April 2001, turned the tide. He has imposed one law on integrating the schools over the objections of the city council. He has annulled two others, dismissed local officials and business chiefs, and rammed through reforms.

"The powers are broad, I won't deny that," Mr. Clarke said over dinner. "But the way you get reforms done is with the cooperation of the people. You don't get it by acting like a little Tito."

Posted by Gregory at June 17, 2003 07:34 AM
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