South Ossetia War

Post-Cold War Europe

Europe 2008.0816

South Ossetia War

Europe after the Cold War (16 August 2008)

Historical Map of Europe & the Mediterranean

The collapse of Russian power in 1989-91 had allowed NATO and the EU to absorb not only the former Soviet satellites in eastern Europe but also the former Soviet Republics in the Baltic. In the 2000s, it began to look like Georgia, Ukraine, and some of the other ex-Soviet states might soon follow. However when a resurgent Russia intervened in Georgia's dispute with its own breakaway republics, any thoughts of further Western expansion were put on hold.

Main Events

2004 NATO Enlargement

2004 enlargement of the European Union

Cyprus, Czech Republic, Malta, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovenia, Slovakia and Estonia join the European Union in its single largest expansion to date.

Orange Revolution in Ukraine

Cedar Revolution

In 2005, Former Lebanese President Rafic Hariri was assassinated by supporters of Hezbollah, a Shiite militia supported by the occupying Syrian government. For two months, peaceful protests erupted throughout Lebanon demanding Syrian withdrawal, which took place in April.

2006 Lebanon War

Israel's withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000 enabled Hezbollah to consolidate power in the region and launch increasingly aggressive cross-border attacks into Israel. The Israelis retaliated in July 2006 by re-invading southern Lebanon and targeting Hezbollah throughout the country by sea and air. A United Nations ceasefire went into effect on 14 August, after which Lebanese forces re-established control of Southern Lebanon for the first time since 1975.

2007 enlargement of the European Union

Bulgaria and Romania accede to the European Union.

Subprime mortgage crisis

During a boom in housing construction, the bundling and improper rating of high-risk mortgages caused the United States bond market to crash in 2007. The ensuing financial crisis sent the US economy into the Great Recession, with the stock market crashing a year later.

Kosovo formally declares independence

Russian war with Georgia over South Ossetia and Abkhazia

About this map