THE CROATIAN forces of Vukovar are withdrawn, the federal army has won its show of force. There are the victors and the vanquished, there are the innocent victims. It is the lowest point reached by Europe in the post-1989 era.
Looking further at the reasons and the wrongs of the single parties, if there is a need for a date or a symbol to signal an alarm if not a brusque turn of history, this date is Nov. 18 and this symbol is Vukovar.
It is the day in which the impotence of diplomacy has triumphed. Vukovar tells us that the logic of the strongest has prevailed in the void left by the lack of political initiatives and by the slowness, after the end of the bipolar world, in confronting the problem of constructing a system of rules, of principles, of norms and of pacts capable of guaranteeing the new course of Europe and -- why not? -- of the world.