The impact of the First World War is the single greatest factor to take into account in a transnational history of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1929). The outcome of the war determined who had power and who did not and therefore which conception of Yugoslavism would prevail. Further, the devastating loss of a generation of young men in ‘the war for democracy’ and the search for stability and a new balance of power in Europe led to the investment of a great deal of hope in the successor states. The unshakeable view that peace had to be maintained above all else, and that it depended on the presence of a strong South Slav state, permeated the way outsiders framed their discussions about the Kingdom’s progress and determined its place in international affairs.
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