In modern science, thanks to a number of prominentresearchers (like Eric Hobsbaum, Benedict Anderson, Anthony Smith, Ernest Gellner and others), the causes of interethnic conflicts and nationalistic sentiments have been studied quite fully. The fundamental basis for the emergence of any nation is the so-called collective national consciousness. This phenomenon represents
awareness of a large enough group of peoplespiritual and blood intimacy: common language, traditions, origin, historical past, unity of views on the heroic and tragic moments of history, common aspirations in the future. In modern science there are different views on the phenomenon of the nation, however, according to the most justified of them, the nation as such emerges only in the New Age of European history, in the era of industrialization and urbanization, when the archaic local identities of village communities broke (and the absolute majority of the population lived in them ) and the limited world of a medieval peasant suddenly expanded to the borders of the country.
American historian Eugene Joseph Weber aptlydescribed these processes in his book "From the peasants to the French". This is how the identification with a particular nation takes place and, accordingly, the opposition to others. Already in this fact, the causes of interethnic conflicts are laid. The fact that a nation can not be chosen creates a sacred image from it, as if sent by Providence. The image, for which, as history shows, millions are ready to go to their deaths. It is interesting that no one is giving his life for the honor of the association, the trade union and so on. This is worthy of only what, in the opinion of man, it is impossible to change, which is given initially and to the end. The next layer in the foundation, which paves the way for the emergence of interethnic conflicts, is the fact that any nation has its own distinctive characteristics only. They have completely different character: mental, religious, linguistic, connected with historical memory and others. The reasons for interethnic conflicts lie in the fact that representatives of at least one of the nations have an anxious feeling for preserving their own national attributes: an attempt on the memory of national heroes, infringement of the language and so on.
It is interesting that they are particularly susceptible to protectionnational dignity and interests of those nations that for a long time have been subjected to various kinds of oppression that did not have the opportunity to realize their respective needs for a long time. So, for example, in modern Europe, such communities are Basques in Spain and Flemings in Belgium. The causes of interethnic conflicts in these regions consist in a long-term domination in the countries of foreign communities: Castilians and Walloons, respectively. Another vivid example is the Soviet state. Interethnic conflicts in the USSR came to the surface during perestroika. And interestingly, those who for a long time did not have their own state, the Balts, Ukrainians, Georgians, stated about their desire for national implementation. In turn, the peoples who once had their own state, are not so sensitive to national issues today. The British, French, Italians in Europe have long found a common language, "played enough" with the idea of the nation and having adopted other values.