Tuesday, November 16

Preview - Signs from a divided country - 1/35th scale traffic signs, Yugoslavia 1990's from Miniart...

The breakup of Yugoslavia and the Balkans war of the 1990s is a conflict mired in claims and counter-claims from many sides. Dioramas from this period are popular with modellers, so the need for road & traffic signs are much needed. Miniart look to fill the gap with this new set. We have the kit contents & the photos that were used in researching it in our preview...

Preview -  Signs from a divided country - 1/35th scale traffic signs, Yugoslavia 1990's from Miniart...

Traffic Signs. Yugoslavia 1990's
Kit No #35643 
1/35th scale
The kit contains plastic and signage for thirty-four signs
Product Link on the MiniArt Website
MiniArt has added to their earlier set of road and traffic signs of the 90s with this new set of Yugoslavian Traffic Signs in 1/35th scale. This new set surely adds depth to our diorama toolset with pre-war (and some post-war in remote signage) options also...

The signs this kit's research was based on are shown below with a brief summary from the BBC on the war...

Subject: The former Yugoslavia & the Balkans War in the 1990s
The former Yugoslavia was a Socialist state created after the German occupation in World War II and bitter civil war. A federation of six republics, it brought together Serbs, Croats, Bosnian Muslims, Albanians, Slovenes and others under a comparatively relaxed communist regime. Tensions between these groups were successfully suppressed under the leadership of President Tito.

A scene from the Battle of the Miljevci Plateau was a clash of the Croatian Army (Hrvatska vojska - HV) and forces of the Republic of Serbian Krajina (RSK)
A bullet (and shell) riddled sign from the road to Zagreb
However, after Tito's death in 1980, tensions re-emerged. Calls for more autonomy within Yugoslavia by nationalist groups led in 1991 to declarations of independence in Croatia and Slovenia. The Serb-dominated Yugoslavs attacked, first in Slovenia and then in Croatia. Thousands were killed in the latter conflict which was paused in 1992 under a UN-monitored ceasefire.

Military vehicles of the Rapid Reaction Force (RRF) are at the entrance of the village of Tarcin near Mount Igman, surrounding Sarajevo on July 24, 1995. 
The Tarcin sign at the end of town (the red stripe denotes you are leaving that town...
Bosnia, with a complex mix of Serbs, Muslims and Croats, was next to try for independence. Bosnia's Serbs, backed by Serbs elsewhere in Yugoslavia, resisted. Under leader Radovan Karadzic, they threatened bloodshed if Bosnia's Muslims and Croats - who outnumbered Serbs - broke away. Despite European blessing for the move in a 1992 referendum, war came fast.

A US convoy en route to Tuzla passes through the Serb-held Posavina corridor on January 04, 1996. 
Two Yugoslav tanks turn at a junction on January 9, 1999, on their way to Stari Trg, Kosovo. 
Yugoslav army units, withdrawn from Croatia and renamed the Bosnian Serb Army, carved out a huge swathe of Serb-dominated territory. Over a million Bosnian Muslims and Croats were driven from their homes in ethnic cleansing. Serbs suffered too. The capital Sarajevo was besieged and shelled. UN peacekeepers, brought in to quell the fighting, were seen as ineffective.

A scene from Vukovar on November 18th, 1991, during the three-month siege of the town by ethnic-Serb rebels and Belgrade-controlled Yugoslav forces.
A T-55A, R-24 'MARINA' 1st Gardijska Brigada, Croatian National Guard, Karlovac, December 1991.
International peace efforts to stop the war failed, the UN was humiliated and over 100,000 died. The war ended in 1995 after Nato bombed the Bosnian Serbs and Muslim and Croat armies made gains on the ground. A US-brokered peace divided Bosnia into two self-governing entities, a Bosnian Serb republic and a Muslim-Croat federation lightly bound by a central government.

Croatian soldiers in the liberated Vojnić 
In August 1995, the Croatian army stormed areas in Croatia under Serb control prompting thousands to flee. Soon Croatia and Bosnia were fully independent. Slovenia and Macedonia had already gone. Montenegro left later. In 1999, Kosovo's ethnic Albanians fought Serbs in another brutal war to gain independence. Serbia ended the conflict beaten, battered and alone.

Tanks and jeeps of the Yugoslav Army cross a bridge on way back to the Marshal-Tito-Barracks in Zagreb on Wednesday, July 3, 1991.

The Kit: 1/35th scale Traffic Signs. Yugoslavia 1990's from MiniArt
The kit provides us with thirty-four signs that you might find on the side of the road in the former Yugoslavia during the '90s. The decals are provided for the smoothest adhesion to the plastic parts that replicate steel and concrete that you mount these on.

The plastic:
There are six light grey plastic sprues in the kit, these are replicas of the road signs found all around the former Yugoslavia 1990s...
The thirty-four decals for the signs are included in this pack to give you a very schmick looking signage that looks the part. These are all taken from the examples of the pictures above in this article so accuracy is guaranteed.

There are twenty-four decals of road and traffic signs on a decal sheet to apply straight to the signs
These nine larger highway and road signs are printed on thin paper you cut out and stick on the framework provided in plastic.