The first part of the analysis of the Western debate on the Bosnian war consists of the construction of the debate's basic discourses. Basic discourses provide, as argued in chapter 3, an analytical perspective that facilitates a structured analysis of how discourses are formed and engage each other within a foreign policy debate. They identify the main convectors of discussion by asking how competing discourses articulate the relationship between Self and Other through the deployment of spatial, temporal, and ethical identities and how they couple identity and policy. Basic discourses are based on readings of a large number of texts, preferably spanning a wide set of genres, including policy speeches and interviews, journalistic reporting and editorials, academic analysis, and literary non-fiction, to ensure that the basic discourses identified have a dispersion throughout the wider debate. But one should keep in mind, as argued in chapter 3, that basic discourses are analytical constructions and that texts referred to when composing a basic discourse might not be in complete concordance with the ideal-type basic discourse. For instance, a text might be used as an example of the articulation of a basic discourse's construction of ‘the West’ but may also make a particular construction of ‘America’ which further complicates ‘the West’ into a discursive variation. This underlines that basic discourses are located at a fairly general level of debate and that the detailed readings of discursive variations, for instance of divisions within ‘the West,’ constitutes the next step of the analysis; this is the subject of later chapters.