нов 17

I have failed you

I am not a Serb or a Croat.

I am a Debater.

And I have failed you.

Yesterday in ICTY, two men were acquitted by a 3/2 ruling. These men were convicted of war crimes and sentenced with a total of 42 years just over a year ago. In time that passed, no new evidence that could support their innocence was not presented. Their names and nationality are irrelevant as is the case with all monsters who ordered or in any way participated in deporting, killing, ethnic cleansing or genocide. Also, they are nameless because of the weak minded people who tend to link individual acts with their nationality. There was not, nor will there ever be a justified connection between the two, not because we live on a continent where individualism is celebrated, but because ideologies that put your nationality, religion, family name, sexual orientation and physical attributes first and WHO YOU ARE and WHAT YOU STAND FOR second have devastated Europe time and again. Now, more then ever, we are faced with these ideas in many forms, often not being able to recognize until it’s too late. I beg you to challenge people who defend these ideas, specially if they justify it with the greater good.

Stay forever vigilant.

1. To all my friends who have no opinion of what happened in the Hague yesterday:

The absolute worse you can do now is be indifferent, not just with this issue, but with all things that effect the future of our world. Some of you will be decision makers in your countries, some will settle for much lees. All must be aware of things happening around you. Why? Because the horrors that happened in the last Balkan wars was partially the fault of the people who had no opinions, or just did not want to get involved. Imagine how the chain of events would have been different if the people of Europe pressured their governments to end the conflict when it first began. It was not until Srebrenica that a decisive action was taken, but then it was too late. I believe we will not survive the 21st century if we continue to ignore the problems we face. While I’m writing this, another war is happening in the Мiddle Еast. Please, share information about this, discuss, suggest solutions. Don’t wait for someone else to do it. Defend your stance, but admit you’re wrong when proven otherwise. Don’t be afraid of saying „I’m sorry, i was wrong“.

I should have told you this earlier and I haven’t. Because of this I have failed you. I did not encourage you enough to ask questions about the past, often changing the subject. My intention was to show you the other side, of Balkans, the side that has nothing to do with the wars, but now i feel i was too optimistic. Today we are 42 years further from the truth then we were two days ago. Our children will be thought even more polarized versions of history, witch dramatically increases the chances for future conflicts. We need your opinions because this must not happen.

Not ever again.

2. To my friends who disagree with the ICTY ruling:

If still frustrated, calm dawn and take deep breaths. I know it hurts, but please channel your pain with words, never fists. Cry if you need to, but never forget the tears of your brothers and sisters that you once shared a country with.

And then, take action.

Write, speak out, research. Challenge those who think differently with arguments, never insults. Be patient.

You, I have failed every time i defended ICTY and I’m deeply sorry for it. Even when they charged innocent and released guilty, I believed the in the end it will set the grounds for collective reconciliation. It did the exact opposite. It is clear now that body was a travesty of justice and it shades a doubt on many things. Even if their ruling was correct, that means that they convicted two innocent men for 42 years just a year ago without any evidence. Even if this is the case, it shows an infinity of incompetence and that is completely unacceptable with so much at stake.

However, all this shows how, like with reconciliation, the road to international justice is bumpy and with many crossroads. It is up to you to get it back in the right direction and the only war worth fighting for. I know it’s harder now then ever, but please don’t give up.

You owe it to the future generations.

3. To my friends who agree with ICTY ruling:

I understand it’s often difficult to see beyond the discourse given by your family or your surroundings, yet i am certain that each and everyone of you has the ability to do so. I was shocked at some of the things i saw on social networks. I find it disturbing that some of you posted messed up comments with „divine“ moments, often gloating, all the time knowing that a lot of people might be offended by this. Yet, even the most extreme posts did not nearly hurt my as much as the realization how little i know some of you.

For this reason, I have failed you the most and words can’t describe how sorry i am.

I often avoided the subject of war, because i was afraid not to offend you in any way. I know many of you have lost homes and loved ones, while my memories of that period were not nearly as traumatic. Yes, there was lack of food, medicine, hyperinflation, but all that is not compatible with what you survived. Still it was wrong of me to assume that you, my friends, would not be willing to share that burden with me. Perhaps, if we talked, we both might have different perception on certain events and i was running away from that. I promise you that i will not make the same mistake again.

Only the guilty and the unjust run away and hide like cowards. I am neither.

I believe you are very wrong in thinking that ICTY made a good call and will do my best to confront you with a huge amount of evidence that support my claim, some of witch you can see for yourselves if you research the web. Please try to learn about this issue outside the popular opinion and i will do the same. I might be wrong and if proven, i assure you i will do my best to spread the word. I only expect the same in return. Remember, even the most complicated things can be presented simply, especially when defending the truth.

I look forward to meeting you all again.

And getting drunk with you.

Definitely getting drunk.

by Nebojša Kolundžić