valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
Three years ago - in July 2008 - I posted the news of Radovan Karadzic's arrest. People celebrated on the streets, and there was a feeling of accomplishment and hope that other war criminals would be caught soon.

Today, at the news of Ratko Mladic's arrest, the feeling is different. There are no revelers outside, people are disillusioned and disappointed in the international community and the fact that it took so long to catch the man, especially since many believe that the Serbian government knew very well where he was this entire time but was unwilling to give him up. When asked how they feel about Mladic's arrest, people shrug their shoulders and say that they doubt the arrest will make any difference. I can't help but share that feeling. It feels like too little, too late.

BBC is just one of many sites covering the story: BBC News - Ratko Mladic arrested, reactions in Bosnia, and the world.

The New York Times has published a profile on Mladic and his actions during the war, titled "Executions Were Mladic’s Signature, and Downfall"

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (barcode generator by
On June 14 1992, in Pioneer Street (Pionirska Ulica) in Visegrad around 60 Bosniak civilians, (women, children and elderly) were barricaded and burnt alive in Adem Omeragic’s house. Almost all were from Koritnik village and a majority of them belonged to the Kurspahic family. Koritnik was looted and set ablaze.

The youngest victim was a 2-day old nameless baby.

In the summer of 1992 Bosnian Serb soldiers led by Milan Lukić terrified the Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) population of the small but strategically located town with a ferocious campaign of murders, mass rape and disappearances, including the Pionirska massacre. It was not until July 2009 that Lukić, a post-war fugitive in Argentina, was convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague for this and other brutal crimes committed during the ethnic cleansing of Bosnia’s Drina Valley.

ICTY President Judge Patrick Robinson summed up the crimes of Milan and his cousin Sredoje Lukić as follows:

“In the all too long, sad and wretched history of man’s inhumanity to man, the Pionirska street and Bikavac fires must rank high.

At the close of the twentieth century, a century marked by war and bloodshed on a colossal scale, these horrific events stand out for the viciousness of the incendiary attack, for the obvious premeditation and calculation that defined it, for the sheer callousness and brutality of herding, trapping and locking the victims in the two houses, thereby rendering them helpless in the ensuing inferno, and for the degree of pain and suffering inflicted on the victims as they were burnt alive.“ (ICTY Press Release, 20 July 2009 at

Photographer and Višegrad survivor Velija Hasanbegović’s gallery of photographs taken at the ceremony on 29 May at Mehmed Pasha Sokolović Bridge to commemorate the start of the 1992 massacres can be seen at the Radio Sarajevo website at
valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
All I can say is

Radovan Karadzic FINALLY arrested!

Times Online reports that

"Radovan Karadzic, one of the world’s most wanted men, was arrested yesterday 13 years after he was first indicted by the United Nations War Crimes Tribunal.

The 63-year-old war crimes suspect faces genocide charges for his role in the massacre of more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica in Europe’s worst atrocity since the Second World War, and for organising the siege of Sarajevo which claimed 12,000 lives."

Read the rest of the text here.

valiha: watercolor painting of my cat Lola (Default)
Today marks the 13th anniversary of the Srebrenica massacre, the first case of genocide in Europe since World War II.

The Americans honor those who were killed on 9/11/2001. My country honors the deaths of those whose lives were brutally taken on 7/11/1995.

It is estimated that over 8000 men and boys were slaughtered in the massacre while trying to escape the supposedly safe haven protected by UN Dutch forces. They spent three days on foot, trying to cross the mountains and find safety in the town of Tuzla. Most of them never made it. They were hunted down like animals, and the men, boys and the elderly were separated from the women, loaded up on buses, and executed. 

Every year, the families of the victims recreate the March of Death.  This year, another 308 victims were buried, aged 15 to 84 years old. 

The Srebrenica Genocide Blog has a more complete article about the massacre and this year's anniversary.

It makes me so damn angry to see more massacres in this world committed even after the world leaders cried over the pictures of mutilated bodies, and swore "Never again!" I don't even know how many times.  It turned out that "Never again!" doesn't carry any weight in poor places of the world, like Rwanda and Darfur. 

I really hope to God that something like this does not happen ever again.
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