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Is Serbia right to apologise for Srebrenica massacre?

11:24 UK time, Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Serbia's parliament has passed a landmark resolution apologising for the 1995 Srebrenica massacre - Europe's worst atrocity since World War II. Is Serbia right to apologise?

The motion says Serbia should have done more to prevent the murder of nearly 8,000 Bosnian Muslims by Bosnian Serb forces but it stopped short of calling the killings a genocide.

The resolution - which the Serbian government sees as a crucial step in its attempts to join the European Union - was approved after almost 13 hours of heated negotiations in the Belgrade parliament.

Do you think it was right for Serbia to apologise for what happened at Srebrenica? Does it suggest Serbia is "coming in from the cold" or is it just kow-towing to the West? Is it too little too late? Did you lose loved ones at Srebrenica?

This debate is closed. Thank you for your comments.

Comments

Page 1 of 5

  • Comment number 1.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 2.

    It just goes to show that Serbs have outgrown us by assuming responsibility for their war crimes. When will the US and the UK apologize to the people of Iraq?

  • Comment number 3.

    Yes, this is a crime that is so recent that admitting to it would help the survivors to move on.

  • Comment number 4.

    Serbia should have apologized for the genocide years ago.

  • Comment number 5.

    History is not defined by parliaments. Srebrenica happened, so did Holocaust and so did the Armenian genocide. These are FACTS and need not be confirmed by a majority vote or protected by law.

    If present-day Serbia wishes to assist the healing-process from the Srebrenica massacre, Belgrade should help apprehend all those wanted by ICTY.

  • Comment number 6.

    Every crime must be condemned and criticized, there were on all three sides in the war, and each state must condemn crimes committed by some criminals committed in its name. Serbia is the first condemned the crimes, now we wait for the Muslims and Croats to do the same to the crimes against Serbs.

  • Comment number 7.

    Its a start in the right direction!!! Those who were murdered, their families should all be given money & if their land was taken it should all be given back. As SORRY is not good enough! Actions speak louder than word.

  • Comment number 8.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 9.

    the ONLY reason for the apology is because they want to join the EU.

    the fact the apology does not use the word GENOCIDE indicates Serbia are still avoiding responsibility.

  • Comment number 10.

    An apology now is a bit late but hopefully go some distance in removing the stain of genocide from Serbia. The words themselves are only a start...the trick would be educating a population that does not believe they did anything wrong.

  • Comment number 11.

    All genocides should be universally condemned, whether it is Srebrenica, Rwanda or the Holocaust. It does not only benefit the families of those who suffered, it benefits the collective conscience of the nation which perpetrated the genocide. In the case of Serbia however actions speak louder than words and they should back up this statement by arresting the maniac Mladic.

  • Comment number 12.

    So when can we expect NATO to apologise for the indiscrimate bombing of a European capital, Belgrade, the first since WW2? Or indeed Europe and the UN for sitting by and watching this massacre take place whilst doing precisely nothing? Apologies are meaningless gestures. So we might as well have more of them.

  • Comment number 13.

    This is the minimum Serbs should have done and it should be appreciated that it did not took them centuries, as is the case with quite a number of countries, to apologise for their crimes. there are several other countries which does not have courage to do so. Hopefully Serb decisions is not just motivated by their desire to join EU, i.e. economic benefits.

  • Comment number 14.

    As always, people attach far too much importance to the word "sorry". It's totally irrelevant. It's just an expression of courtesy and you use it when you accidentally bump into someone on the train going to work, not when you systematically exterminate an entire population. It doesn't change anything that happened. The people doing it knew exactly what they were doing. Therefore, this is a meaningless gesture.

  • Comment number 15.

    You can only in any meaningful way apologize for something you have wilfully done.

    Did modern-day Serbia commit this atrocity? No

    Did modern-day Turkey commit the Armenian genocide? No

    Did they happen? YES!

    Instead: Find those who actually did it, and persecute & punish them. Tell what did happen and teach it in school that we may all learn how easily Man becoms a savage, evil beast!

    Look at WW2: USAAF & RAF wilfully murdered 100.000s civilians in Germany & Japan - not to destroy industry but to instill terror. This is a fact too, but rarely taught anywhere.

  • Comment number 16.

    An apology is better than nothing.

    Those responsible know who they are and that includes those from the UN who stood idly by and did nothing. They may not have had the mandate to intervene, but that still does not absolve them of any guilt.

    I would be feeling guilty if I was one of those Dutch UN "peacekeepers".

    The biblical story of the Good Samaritan comes to mind. I am certainly not religious, but that story was told to me at a very young age and is still relevant whether you are a practicing Christian or not.

    Those who could have stopped it should all feel guilty as I do not forgive them for the murder of the 8000 Muslim men and youths.

  • Comment number 17.

    Bosnian Serb “army” – not the people as a whole - led by General Ratko Mladic killed @ 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys. This was done in the supposedly eastern section that was under UN protection. It seems the protection failed and yet the UN escaped responsibility.
    As you tell from my opening statement, the apology cannot mean much until Genberal Ratko Mladic is brought to justice, though an apology for the death of innocent people is always warranted. Mladic was the leader, the main person who could have stopped the massacre.
    Perhaps a better question for this debate might have been: Is it fair to withhold European Union membership from Serbia until Mladic is captured and sent for trial? This seems to me like a punishment against all Serbs for the actions of a relatively few.
    There were atrocities committed on both sides, and a recognition and apology for ALL atrocites, ALL crimes against fellow human beings may have been a stronger, more healing way to go.
    Also, without belittling the suffering of the Muslim women and children who lost their male relatives, Karadzic (who has plead not guilty to all the charges against him) seeks eagerly to demonstrate that some Muslim leaders were responsible for much of the killing of Muslims.
    Why?
    To gain intervention from the US.
    I have just finished reading Major General, Lewis MacKenzie’s book “Peacekeeper: The Road to Sarajevo” in which he writes about telling the then then French President Francois Mitterand “the majority of the blame rests with the Serbs”. But he also writes that Bosnian Muslims were usually first to break ceasefire. He also maintains that there was evidence that some very terrible acts attributed to the Serbs were actually carried out by the Muslims against their own people, “for the benefit of an international audience.”
    Karadzic blames the United States for the civil war.
    In 1992, the Bosnian Muslims, Serbs and Croats signed a peace agreement called the Lisbon Agreement. Instead of peacekeeping around this agreement, instead of supporting the agreement, US ambassador Warren Zimmermann met the Bosnian Muslim president, Alija Izetbegovic.
    Zimmermann told Alija Izetbegovic that if he withdrew from Lisbon and unilaterally declared independence, the US would back him up.
    The motivation was thought to be that the Americans were trying to build favor with the Muslim world after the first Gulf War.
    As for Izetbegovic, thought he would be bringing about the first Muslim nation in Europe. Bosnian Serbs were angry; they were not going to be ruled by Muslims. Bosnian Muslims were intent on the creation of an Islamic state; so, the situation became from Muslims a holy war.
    Starting in 1992, Bosnian Muslims were asking the world to respond with experienced Muslim fighters. Muslim fighters came in droves like locusts - some who had fought against the Russians in Afghanistan. Osama bin Laden was known to have been in Bosnia; so were fundamentalist Muslims from Afghanistan and other countries.
    As you can tell from the foregoing, the US was not neutral; the US made pormises to the Bosnian Muslims.
    Why?
    Why would the US put their support behind Bosniam Muslims?
    Why not put their support behind Karadzic. Wasn’t Karadic anti-communist, democratic? Didn’t the Serbs have a long history of supporting the west? How disappointing this must have been for the Serbs!
    All the facts of this horrible issue have not yet seen the light, but I believe the US made (another) foreign policy mistake.
    Why do I say this?
    The US gave the Muslim fighters yet another fighting ground. Is the world not (now) seeing the after-effect: the reappearance of some of these same fighters in Afghanistan, Chechnya, Pakistan….etc. etc.?

  • Comment number 18.

    Mark wrote: It just goes to show that Serbs have outgrown us by assuming responsibility for their war crimes. When will the US and the UK apologize to the people of Iraq?

    Well maybe they would if it wasn't for the fact that the vast majority of civilian deaths are caused by insurgents and sectarian violence. As long as people like you keep exacerbating the myth that all deaths in Iraq are accountable to coalition forces the situation will never get better.

    Why not call on Iraq to apologize to Kuwait or Iran? for the Taliban to apologize for the genocide of the people of Afghanistan or the Sudanese government to apologize to the people of Darfur which has resulted in 300,000 civilians. You don't care about the dead unless it can further your anti-western agenda.

  • Comment number 19.

    Running over a cat deserves an apology - slaughtering 8000 Muslims deserves a bit more than that. And where are those incompetent Dutch in all of this?

  • Comment number 20.

    "Do you think it was right for Serbia to apologise for what happened at Srebrenica? "
    Why? Do you think it's right for Serbia not to apologise for what happened at Srebrenica? Do you think Bosnian Muslims deserve less respect as victims than other people?
    "Does it suggest Serbia is "coming in from the cold" or is it just kow-towing to the West?"
    I don't know, but I think it's a good start - give them credit for apologizing at least. Or are East Europeans so looked down by the West as to have such little expectations for them too?
    "Is it too little too late?"
    It's never too late to repent. However it would be more meaning if they turned over Ratko Mladic too.
    And the War Crimes Tribunal should prosecute all who committed war crimes - no just Serbs, but Croats and Bosnian too.

  • Comment number 21.

    Does anyone realise that Serbia has extradited all accused to the Hague, except of course Mladic and Hadzic. I think it is 44 out of 46. Of the 1130 years given for crimes committed during the war, 1120 years have been handed to Serbs. When will you people get off your high horse and see what this really is, a onesided witchunt. Why don't you all do a little background research instead of believing everything you hear on CNN and BBC. After all it's that herdlike mentality that got you into Iraq and Afghanistan. Also, i suggest you look into what Nasser Oric did to Serbs living in and around Srebrenica.

  • Comment number 22.

    16. At 1:33pm on 31 Mar 2010, Andrew Lye wrote:
    An apology is better than nothing.

    Those responsible know who they are and that includes those from the UN who stood idly by and did nothing. They may not have had the mandate to intervene, but that still does not absolve them of any guilt.

    I would be feeling guilty if I was one of those Dutch UN "peacekeepers".

    I am pretty sure you would have stood by too with a gun pointed at your head, stopping you from intervening.

  • Comment number 23.

    It is great news that the Serbian Government has admitted that it could have done more to prevent the massacre. However, i do believe the appology would have been better coming from the Government of the Republika Srpska.
    It also places pressure on the Government of Croatia to appologise to Serb and Muslim victims, and for the Government of the Bosnian Federation to appologise to Serb, Croat, and rival Muslim victims.
    Well done to Serbia for taking the initiative in this subject.

  • Comment number 24.

    8. At 12:57pm on 31 Mar 2010, arunmehta wrote:
    "Every one is waiting for the 'ultimate' apology from OBL for the 9/11."
    What does OBL have to do with the Balkan conflict that finished half a decade before 9/11?
    Unless of course, you equate all Muslims with 9/11 and all Serbs with Srebrenica. Insulting to both to say the least. Would equating every Hindu with the Gujrat massacres be acceptable to you then? Would equating every African for the massacres in Rwanda, Darfur, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Congo be any more acceptable? Would blaming every Chinese person for the deaths in Tibet or Xinjiang be acceptable?

  • Comment number 25.

    I must congratulate Serbia. Will the US apologise for starting the war ie main contributor behind the break up of Yugoslavia. Do people realise there are mujahadeen in Bosnia? where did they come from? Yugoslavia was a prosperous, free and very powerful country that the US planned to breakup since the death of Tito. Will the US apologise to the world and those killed in 9/11 due to their military assistance to Osama in the 80's when the USSR was already a step ahead in counter terrorism? Nothing wrong with admitting wrong doing? But never ever heard the US presidency or military admit they are wrong!..

  • Comment number 26.

    I wonder if the Muslims will apologise for their atrocities against the Serbs. They did start the conflict after all with their raids into Serb villages. That's how Milosevic was elected, because he was the only politician to go to these villages and see for himself the terrorism by the Muslims.

    Will there also be apologies by Arab states who sent thousands of Arabs (unofficially of course) to 'fight' in Europe against the Serbs.

    The Arab militia brought their beheading experience to Bosnia.

    There was a very powerful report by Sky News about this, obviously it was swept under the carpet by the BBC and Guardian.

  • Comment number 27.

    The Serb apology should now be met by apologies from the Bosnian Muslim and Croatian governments for crimes committed against Serbian civilians during the Yugoslav civil wars. Croatia, for example, have never apologized nor likely ever will, for its genocide directed against its Serbian minority in World War II.

    Near Srebrenica, thousands of Serbian civilians were also massacred in Bratunac and other towns at the hands of Muslim forces operating out of the so-called "save haven" of Srebrenica.

    Croats and Muslims will have to accept the same catharsis the Serbs have just exhibited before there is any true reconciliation in the Balkans. And this will require also apologizing for the crimes committed in their names against innocent Serbian civilians.

    Sadly, there is not even a hint of that happening and that is truly shameful.



  • Comment number 28.

    Surely the acknowledgement is the key and then nations can move on. There are lots of apologies that need to be said that never will be and that is why, in general, we as a race will stay in conflict with each other probably until it's too late.

    It's a funny world where all the major religions seem to have cardinal laws that in essence say it's bad to harm and don't kill people, don't nick people's stuff, put away the green eyed monster and don't look at the good lady wife, but people do most of their killing for exactly those reasons and pray to God to help them.

    Very strange.

  • Comment number 29.

    Belgrade should reject mass extermination of humans as immoral. Corrections panels must review each case for the death penalty. The state is required to define crimes deserving of the punishment. During war, the holocaust of civilians is a heinous and deliberate offense.

  • Comment number 30.

    An appology is not enough, I was in Srebrenica in 1995 with the forces and the aftermath was sickening.

    Serbia should not be allowed to join the EU. History repeats itself and there have was wars between the former Yugoslavia and Serbia every 50 years.

    Lets not forget too though, Bosnia also committed war crimes against the Serbs too in retaliation.

    Mostar was the worst hit as the town was segregated by Mostar bridge, which meant there was no escape.

    Sarajevo, was blown to pieces, and continued to recieve sporadic fire long after a truce was announced by both sides. That goes for Zepca and Zavadivici.

    All war crimes must be paid for by all sides.

  • Comment number 31.

    Re #24 Muhammad Zaman


    That's the problem these days: guilt by association.

    The only way out of this predicament I can see is a so far silent Muslim majority not condemning radicals in their midst (which means nothing)
    but TAKING CARE of the Islamist fanatics in their midst before's too late.

    This majority being certainly more qualified than anybody else to remove weeds which infested their garden.

  • Comment number 32.

    No doubt the Serbs were ordered by the EU to do this to have any chance of gaining EU membership.
    The massacre there was totally disgusting and wrong but the Serbians have payed a high price since then including having part of it natural country taking of them by NATO and given to Albanian Muslims,Kosovo is amazingly reconised by the Arab world,the same people who will not reconise Israel.
    Muslims take Christian land is ok,Jews taking Muslim not ok,the joke of international politics.

  • Comment number 33.

    Mark wrote:
    "It just goes to show that Serbs have outgrown us by assuming responsibility for their war crimes. When will the US and the UK apologize to the people of Iraq?"

    18. At 1:38pm on 31 Mar 2010, Andy wrote:
    "Well maybe they would if it wasn't for the fact that the vast majority of civilian deaths are caused by insurgents and sectarian violence. As long as people like you keep exacerbating the myth that all deaths in Iraq are accountable to coalition forces the situation will never get better.

    Why not call on Iraq to apologize to Kuwait or Iran? for the Taliban to apologize for the genocide of the people of Afghanistan or the Sudanese government to apologize to the people of Darfur which has resulted in 300,000 civilians. You don't care about the dead unless it can further your anti-western agenda."

    I agree with Andy. Whether you agree with the reasons for taking action in Iraq or not, there is a clear difference between indiscrimate targeting of the innocent population (Srebrenica) and the targeting (albeit not perfect) of military personel and installations during war. Every innocent death of an innocent person during war is tragic and must be avoided where possible, and our forces go out of their way (sometimes to their own detrimante) to avoid innocent civilins, which is far from what many other forces around the world do including Serbia.

  • Comment number 34.

    They did that just because of self-interest.

    If they really sorry I'm sure that they would help victims families and placed the stop on Republika Srpska. RS leaders are still working on separation from Bosnia (which includes Srebrenica as well) which would, if ever happens, suggest that genocide pays off.

  • Comment number 35.

    Am apology is welcome but cynic that I am I can't help wondering if there is more to this than meets the eye.

    Could it be connected to the fact that Serbia wants to be part of the EU. If saying sorry is to their own advantage then it is worse than no apology at all.

    There is a spate of saying sorry by nations across the globe - the word itself does very little to offset the harm the transgression did in the first place. Words are cheap.

    Better not to do anything wrong in the first place - it takes so many years to agree that an apology is due that the offender is, more often than not, unable to make amends himself.

  • Comment number 36.

    Serbia is right to make very very very late appology but it shodul do more to educate its people about what has actully happened as they seem rather oblivious.
    And as to commenting on Armenia is completely different historical time and different circumstances no UN at thet time!!!!!!!!!!!!! Srebrencia masacre was done by srb forces with a massive negligent mistake by UN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Terrible tragedy!

  • Comment number 37.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 38.

    The twice-far removed apology is unrepresented Window-dressing on a Parade-Float. On this side of their Jihad, The majority of the real world don't give a toss.

  • Comment number 39.

    With my cynical hat on I'd suggest this apology has been made purely to open the way for possible EU membership.

    However, unlike many of the posters here, I'm not really that cynical. I imagine that the debate was furious and balanced the pros and cons of making such a public apology. The Government knew that this will be spat upon by some factions. It is a good start, clearly thought out, and I believe the sentiments are real - enough time has passed for the healing process to begin, yet the atrocities are fresh enough that an acknowledgement is required.

  • Comment number 40.

    There are many things to comment upon in this world
    Just now, the resignation of the pope should be priority nr. 1
    ( I know you would not publish this, part of the cover up????)

  • Comment number 41.

    Apologies: yes it is good. Scars created physically and otherwise: No it does not heal all.

  • Comment number 42.

    Apologies can have many different meanings, as is emphasized by the comments posted here. I think the question of “Is Serbia right to apologize for the Srebrencica massacre?” is one of little interest. “Should have” and “should not have” are speculations of things that we cannot change. I think the question to ask would be: “Why did Serbia apologize?”
    It stands to reason that if an individual takes responsibilities for his or her actions and does something regrettable, he or she may apologize to an offended party to make amends. In some cases, apologies lack the initial step of a claim of responsibility. These apologies are not made out of a sense of honor, duty or moral standing. Instead, this breed of apologies is defined by the intended effect on the receptive party and the observers of the act. Apologies made by governments almost always fall into this second grouping.
    So, is Serbia right to make this apology? Only time and the resulting public opinion will be able to answer that.

  • Comment number 43.

    I think Serbia has done the right thing, although this will never make the harm undone. What a pity that countries like Poland, Russia and Czechoslovakia did not have the same courage to opologise for their massacres follwing WW1 and WW2.

  • Comment number 44.

    The very question is a veiled propaganda because people from Serbia nor the Serbia were not involved and are not responsible for the war crime that happened in Srebrenica which was the ruling of the International Hague court. Media to this day uses unproven numbers inflated because of the need of Bosnia Moslem politicians to perpetuate the role of exclusive victim of the war. Facts show that the forces of Bosnian Moslems in Srebrenica committed numerous crimes killing not only males but females and children in villages surrounding Srebrenica. To this day no one was apologizing for these heinous crimes and worse leader of these killers, Naser Oric was acquitted at the other very much biased court for war crimes in former Yugoslavia at Hague.
    For sure the Serbian government at that time could have done more to try to prevent these revenge killings from happening but that can be said for all western countries involved in Bosnian civil war.
    The very myth of Srebrenica "genocide" have only one purpose - to perpetuate role of "bad guys" for Serbs and exonerate great powers and European countries from their role in the breakup of Yugoslavia and subsequent civil war in Croatia and Bosnia.

  • Comment number 45.

    12 NATO bombed your capital to stop the attrocities you were committing.

    I know NATO soldiers who serverd in Bosnia and from their first account stories its the least you deserved. If Hitler appologised we would we forgive him? What the Serbs did easily equals in cruelty anything Hitler did. You even rivalled the barbarism of the Rwanda massacre.

    Walking live male Bosnians into meat mincers meant for dead animals, while their families looked on.

    No level of apology irradicates the evil behind acts such as that. It's about the time the truth came out about what actually happened. That'll knock the smug smirk of Serbia's face.

  • Comment number 46.

    If Serbia wants to make a genuine apology then they should hand over all the war crime suspects they are allegedly hiding/shielding.

  • Comment number 47.

    Hopefully the example set by Serbia will serve as a model for despotic regimes, such as the Israeli Zionists, who must not only apologize for the atrocities they have carried out for decades but, most importantly, must end the abuses, assassinations and massacres that have been the centerpiece of their expansionist and inhumane policies.

  • Comment number 48.

    I don't see anything particularly wrong with Serbia apologizing for what happened in Srebrenica, however where are the apologies from those who committed crimes against Serbs.

    It always seems to be the Serbs and Serbia that are being held to account or punished, which smacks of victor's justice.

  • Comment number 49.

    I saw scenes that I am not allowed by law yet to mention, as it was all too political. I would love to say everything that I saw and bared witness too, but unfortunately my lips are sealed.

    All sides should appologise and then perhaps we can move on in life.

    EU membership is beyond approach at the present time I think, perhaps in another 20 years time, or do we want to open yet more doors and give greater opportunity for troubles ahead.

  • Comment number 50.

    It is absurd how some people here still try to justify the actions of the Serbs. It really is mind boggling how some regard this as the sort of apology 'needed' to heal. ABSOLUTELY NOT! It is not enough, it is no sincere, and it will not help in healing any wounds. The Serbian society is one made up of ultra nationalists who regard themselves as superior to others, and not only in the region. If Serbia was a powerful country, say like Germany in WW2, their Balkan neighbors would be eliminated without mercy. Case in point Serbia in the early 90s. Others here refer to Bosnians as the 'Muslims'...you can guess who these people are and what they insinuate when using this type of language - of course their race and religion is superior to that of the Muslim Bosniaks. Long story short: Can anyone name me 1 country in the Balkans (except Greece bc of religious reasons) that respects Serbia?

  • Comment number 51.

    I wonder what is the use of all these apologies that are suddenly very fashionable? Smacks of crocodile tears to me. I don't think the British ever apologised for the Amritsar Massacre of 1919, but as a middle-aged Bitish bloke who's spent all his life trying to get on with a peaceful life in spite of all the efforts of the Governments he never voted for, how were these events in anyway my fault? Similarly, as far as I know the Srebrenica massacre was carried out by a bunch of Bosnians (who were ethnic serbs), so it would make just as much sense for Croatia to apologise for the massacre as it does for Serbia. In the meatime, did Austria and Germany ever apologise for the privations inflicted on the Serbs in the First World War?
    However, if an apology has some meaning or value to the victims, then those making the apology must surely be able to be meaningful and sincere, and indeed acknowlege their culpability. Pope Benedict: take heed.

  • Comment number 52.

    This is great... Because it will discredit the ruling Democrats and restore some sanity to the Serbian legislature. The Serbian people will not stand for this, and the EU will find out that the carrot of EU membership they are dangling is worth less to Serbs than they think.

  • Comment number 53.

    It is the least Serbia can do. It should compensate the victims and arrest Mladic and others involved in those crimes against humanity.

  • Comment number 54.

    An apology probably can't hurt, though i would like to see other Balkan states reciprocate.

    The problem is that the root causes of the Balkan conflict are all still in place.

    The conflict in the 90s had been smouldering for 50 years, since the end of the second world war, before it finally burst into flames with the dissolution of Yugoslavia.

    It would be a mistake to believe that everything is just hunky dory now.

  • Comment number 55.

    Vladko Mladic, Radovan Karadic & Slobodan Milosovic should all follow the route of Sadam Hussein

  • Comment number 56.

    The human race still represents a very un-intelligent, savage form of life. Ongoing massacres & State-brutality have continued against our fellow man.(Serbia,Bosnia,Croatia,Sudan, Nigeria, Ruanda, El Slavador, Nicaragua, Argentina, Vietnam, Cambodia, N.Ireland, Afghanistan, Iraq, Israel, etc etc) Ongoing cruelty and exploitation of all other animals is ongoing around the world. Can we just say sorry & be forgiven? I don`t think so. It`s quite ridiculous but then we are still a cruel & primitive species.

  • Comment number 57.

    All born of their desire to join the EU, this is a step in the right direction. Perhaps they'll feel compelled to finally recognise Srebrenica as an act of genocide, although I doubt it. We're still awaiting Turkey to do that nearly a century on.

  • Comment number 58.

    It was a right decision by Serbian parlament to acknowledge even indirect, guilt in not preventing this murder. President Tadis has individualy done the same few years ago. This should fuel fair winds in the Balkans, where Serbia and Croatia have moved on, ready to face tough issues of the past.

    However, the ball is now in the court of Bosnian Muslims, who are, unfortunantely still living in 90's, lead by ultranacionalists like Haris Silajdzic, and ready to protect war criminals without any scrutiny in what they have done. I woulod like to note a position of Bosnian Muslim appointed and supported prosecutor, who publicaly stated that alleged war criminal Ejup Ganic (who is wanted for ordering to fire into military column withdrawing in peace from Sarajevo under protection of his own commintment and UN peacekeper escort, and killing of wounded, non-combat personell) should of not traveled outside of his juristiction to get arrested in UK.

    Bosnian civil wars of '90's have left behind crimes, suffering and unease to face futur on all three sides. Only strong leaders will be able to deal with it.

    The bid is open for Bosnian Muslim leader who can accept the past and future of Bosnia being civilized country - a home for all three of its people (Muslims, Croats and Serbs), and thus join Mr. Tadic of Serbia and Mr. Josipovic of Croata as "new time leaders of Balkans".

  • Comment number 59.

    @43

    What exactly should Poland and Czechoslovakia apologize for?

    Should Poland be sorry for the 25,000 army officers, professors, and intellectual elite murdered by the Soviet NKVD in 1940 at Katyn (which is still not recognized as a war crime by Russia)?

    Should Czechoslovakia be sorry for being repressed by communism along with most of Eastern Europe?

    Should Poland be sorry for having the largest (>20%) population loss due to WWII?

    I'd be fascinated to try and understand your logic. Please explain.

    I know that Russia has still not apologized for Katyn or to any other E. European country for a 50-year post-war developmental setback. Please don't lump victims of war like Poland and Czechoslovakia along with instigators like Russia (USSR) (who invaded Poland on Sept 17, 1939).

    Thanks

  • Comment number 60.

    What I was struck by is that the resolution did not mention the word genocide. Calling the killing of 8372 men, women and children anything else but genocide; as International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in the Haag (Prosecutor v. Krstić), International Court of Justice (Bosnian Genocide Case) and European Court of Human Rights (Jorgić v. Germany case) concluded, UN resolution 47/121 and EU Parliament passed (January 16, 2009), as US House resolution 199 and US Senate resolution 134 assert, and states and cities in Michigan, Missouri, North Carolina, Illinois and Canada have proclaimed, is categorically and morally wrong and it is form of genocide denial. This only downplays the significance of this event and it is an insult to all victims of genocide. Serbia can not hide behind this fact if they truly want to apologize for genocide in Srebrenica.

  • Comment number 61.

    Yes, they were right. What possible excuse could a nation heve for NOT apologising for a cold-blooded war crime of that magnitude? It's a positive move because it allows them to move forward into hopefully a more peaceful and constructive era with those who were previously their enemies/victims. It's a good principle; if the Turks would do the same, they could have a postive and mutually beneficial relsationship with the Armenians, for example. Unfortunately, there will always be those who childishly think that admitting guilt for crimes they're committed is somehow a weak thing to do; on the contrary, it may well be a sign of maturity and a step towards being a civilised society.

  • Comment number 62.

    My brother was one of those peacekeepers, Andrew Lye. He doesn't feel guilty, he did everything in his power to do something, as did his colleagues. At least he was a medic, so he could help that way (or not, sometimes, he's told us some heart-wrenching stories). People who blame Dutchbat read too many newspaper headlines and haven't got a clue about what really happened. When you're that close to an event you realise how incredibly wrong the media often is.

    It's good Serbia apologised. I'm not sure if they actually needed to, as they weren't in charge at the time, but it's good anyway.

  • Comment number 63.

    In my view the apology did not go far enough. Admitting guilt to have participated in the genocide would have started the reconciliation process. It is simply not enough. It is an eye-wash to placate the gullible public and EU opinion.

    I am not impressed by the apology.

    In last two decades World has seen genocide in Europe, Africa and India. Every time if the aggressor party has failed to accept the responsibility and apologized profoundly, the tragedy has come back to haunt them. Look at Gujarat, India, where the state authority planned and executed a genocide of the Muslims and now the Chief Minister is trouble being asked to justify his position before the special investigative team formed by the supreme court.

  • Comment number 64.

    EU deals Eh whats new! Thats one day after ex PM Blair ran in - then out again of the UK after being in charge of killing hundreds of thousands of people on a whim. I know from Serb friends of mine that this is not true however, like the UK we move forward and blame anybody except ourselves and the truth. It's all about money and property - but my friends said it's about our home-land. You have this to come one said to me a few days ago! Be warned "for what you wish for in the UK" Oh and what happend to Milosovic under EU Guard?

  • Comment number 65.

    I really am not sure about this 'gesture'. My understanding is that this particular atrocity was committed by Bosnians of a Serb persuasion; not native Serbs. If so, it appears that this gesture is a political act aimed at restoring normality of relations between Serbia and the international community. All I now need to hear emanating from Belgrade is that dreadful, much-coined phrase "lessons have been learned" and I will run off, screaming!

  • Comment number 66.

    Is Serbia apology part of the requirement to enter the EU? How about the murderer Mladic that he is still on the run inside Serbia? How about for Serbia to come forward for an honest apology to genocide and start paying the family victims for their crimes?

  • Comment number 67.

    OOPS...sorry! didn't mean to butcher and murder thousands of innocents.
    But let bygones be bygones...let's move on. BTW, can we now be part of the EU ?

  • Comment number 68.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't muslim immigrants decide they wanted a bit of Serbian territory and nicked it? I see parallels with what happened there with Britains future. It's about time humans learned to live in peace, but then, people who you've allowed to set up home in your country shouldn't somewhere down the line decide a slice of your country should be theres.

  • Comment number 69.

    This resolution is only a half-hearted apology and in its current form it is not acceptable to the Bosnian people. What happened in Srebrenica was clearly genocide and that has been stated by the United Nations. The US and EU mark July 11th as a day to remember the victims of that genocide. Until Serbia uses the proper word to describe the crime committed it will be seen as nothing but a PR campaign by Tadic to improve Serbia's reputation without having to do any serious work on changing Serbian politics and policies. Only when Serbia arrests the genocidal war criminal Mladic (who is living in Serbia), votes into law a resolution condemning the Srebrenica Genocide (calling the crime by its proper name), and promises that it will never again support the Milosevic policies of genocide and ethnic cleansing will Serbia's apology mean anything.

  • Comment number 70.

    If what was needed was truth and reconciliation, this apology falls far short of it. The truth is attempted genocide, the Bosniaks will never accept this half hearted apology while the likes of Mladic still roam freely so offering this pittance is merely salt in a raw wound.

  • Comment number 71.

    Most of the currently fashionable national apologies for long-past wrongs are nothing more than pointless posturing. But this is not of that ilk. What makes this apology meaningful is the degree of connectedness to the offences and the people who committed them.

    The UK government apologising to modern Africans for a slave trade which ended 200 years ago is a nonsense. A simple acknowledgement that many of the advantages we enjoy today were bought and paid for by the trade in human flesh would be perfectly appropriate. But it will be many decades before the government of the UK is relieved of the pressing relevance of an apology to the people of Iraq.

    The Serbian parliament has at least seen fit to express its regrets sooner rather than later. There may be motives which are not altogether selfless. But they are to be applauded for this gesture nonetheless.

  • Comment number 72.

    Re #59 P{aul wrote:

    @43

    What exactly should Poland and Czechoslovakia apologize for?

    Should Poland be sorry for the 25,000 army officers, professors, and intellectual elite murdered by the Soviet NKVD in 1940 at Katyn (which is still not recognized as a war crime by Russia)?

    Should Poland be sorry for having the largest (>20%) population loss due to WWII?

    I'd be fascinated to try and understand your logic. Please explain.







    The mere fact that one has to remind 'comrades' and assorted 'fellow travellers' of those facts, jest as of the fact that Soviet Russia was Nazi III Reich's staunch ally till June of 1941 - is very sad. :(

  • Comment number 73.

    A terrible crime was committed and an apology costs nothing how many have been brought to account for this, it should not have been allowed to happen it was this incident that brought the fact that the UN was a useless force a pity we didn't rush in then when we were needed to save these people but true to life when people do need you no attemps are made that is unless there is something in it for them.

  • Comment number 74.

    To "Paul wrote:"
    Any country which was or is guilty of killing people on a mass scale,just because they belong to the - wrong race - should apologise. That is the least they can do even when, as in case of the two countries mentioned, they suffered too.

  • Comment number 75.

    Actions speak louder than words, but an apology is better than no apology.

  • Comment number 76.

    Serbia has taken a difficult political step very well. The apology coming from Serbia for the Srebenica massacre shows that genuine reform and progress can occur where it is not expected. This is a difficult process to go through for those apologizing.

    Serbia may be attempting to shake off its past in order to join the European Union in its contemporary activities. Regardless of its motives, it must be considered political progress for the Serbians to adopt a consciously progressive approach to the war it waged in the past.

  • Comment number 77.

    Apologising seems to be the fashion nowadays. The interesting question of course is that it seems that you must be a racial minority in order to be apologised to. I see no-one coming forward to apologise for 9/11, no-one for 7/7 and no-one for the bombing of the Moscow underground this week.

  • Comment number 78.

    Will the US and UK apologize for Iraq and Afghanistan?
    Will the US apologize for the Iran - Iraq war which they help start?
    Serbia is only the tip of the iceberg. Let's not forget all of the crimes against humanity the US and UK started for THEIR own SELFISH INTERESTS!

  • Comment number 79.

    I've noticed several commentators have said that this apology was either an empty gesture or that it was too little, too late. On the contrary, an apology such as this is a monumental gesture. It is an acknowledgment that the crime was committed and of the complicity of the Serbian Nation in that crime. This is a monumental step towards reconciliation in the region.

  • Comment number 80.

    Having served in Northern Ireland, First Iraq War, Yugoslavia,/ Bosnia 1993 through to 1998 (Several Tours 5 in Total), Macedonia, and Kosovo Twice, I have seen the barbaric sites that this human race has to offer.

    Lets get this world sorted out and allow our offspring a safe and properous future to grow up in. Stop blowing up the world and start to look after it. There are easier ways of getting messages accross.

    Roll on the end!!!!

  • Comment number 81.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 82.

    This is all politics, I don't believe there is sincerity in it; besides, there were also atrocities against the Serbs by the Croats & Kosovans, what have they to say?

  • Comment number 83.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 84.

    A lot of country's should apologize for their behaviour in the breakup of form. Yugoslavia. The main responsibilities lies on the German government for supporting the violent breakup when all other country's said it would create chaos. They supplied the weapons and ordered their client-states to declare independence. It takes no genius to calculate what would happen after that.
    The massacre was terrible and Serbia is right to apologize.

  • Comment number 85.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 86.

    78 @fredsmith
    Will the US and UK apologize for Iraq and Afghanistan?
    Will the US apologize for the Iran - Iraq war which they help start?
    Serbia is only the tip of the iceberg. Let's not forget all of the crimes against humanity the US and UK started for THEIR own SELFISH INTERESTS!



    A) Afghanistan was legitimate as they government of that country launched attacks on the twin towers, unless that is you a conspiracy theorist and think it was the US government, so what other reason did they go to war for then?


    B) The Egyptian Coptic Christians are facing persecution and it is happening today and doesn’t the west do anything about that . no

  • Comment number 87.

    Comment 2 "It just goes to show that Serbs have outgrown us by assuming responsibility for their war crimes. When will the US and the UK apologize to the people of Iraq?"

    Perhaps because they didn't commit a war crime there. If you recall the 30 countries involved in the Iraq campaign did not deliberately massacre unarmed civilians en masse. Have you forgotten that they targeted Saddam's military? At least 90% of the killing during and after the war was by insurgents, Moslem on Moslem, the kind of person your comments give succour to.

    The Serbs, on the other hand, took groups of Moslem's aside and shot them in cold blood. (The Moslem world conveniently forgets that the west was protecting Moslems in this war too.) Serbia should certainly apologise and show they mean it by turning in other characters wanted for questioning on their conduct during the war.

  • Comment number 88.

    When will the Turks apologise for the genocide (UN classification) of the Armenian Christians in WW1, and still want to be a part of the EU despite being on a different continent

  • Comment number 89.

    Absolutely, but we must never forget that it takes two or more to engage in any confrontation - therefore the other Parties should also apologise. When they have done so, life can move on for all who were involved. There are always two, or more, sides to any confrontation and often both are right in their view - however obnoxious the deeds that were done!

    Lets us hope that peace can reign now, and people get on with their lives regardless of their colour, class, creed, or beliefs!

  • Comment number 90.

    The Dutch are keeping very quiet........................?

  • Comment number 91.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 92.

    Belgrade was still the capital of a modern European country. These unspeakable years were certainly not the dark ages, although some refuse to budge a single stagnated brain wave from there.

    Serbia's road to the construction of a modern European society will be a long one, far longer that it took for this semi apology.

    Fast tracking requires cunning, and the utterance of 'sorry' is merely a matter of political expediency.

  • Comment number 93.

    87. wind-blown
    "Perhaps because they didn't commit a war crime there. If you recall the 30 countries involved in the Iraq campaign did not deliberately massacre unarmed civilians en masse. "

    The accursed "THEY" target civilians.

    The sainted "WE" merely target the places where civilians are.

    The Serbian parliament has set an example which our leaders in the US and UK are far too cowardly to follow.

  • Comment number 94.

    As someone who has lost his father in that war and has been forced to leave Bosnia I can tell you that this is a cruel joke. I personally will not forget or forgive crimes committed against my people. So they can call it whatever they want, to us it will always be genocide. I’ll go a step further and say, that western world, especially EU, has proven over and over that they are incapable with dealing with their islamophobia. Just look at France, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany and how they look down on Muslims. That political kangaroo court in Hague you set up shows that Europe has not changed at all. Bosniaks should forget about EU aspirations and work to improve their socio-political status within their own country instead of looking toward foreign politicians for justice. I am for ending all the relations with Serbia and any country that aided Serbs in any way during the war.

  • Comment number 95.

    If the Jews can claim holocaust,the Armenians can claim genocide,it's only fair for Muslims around the world who have been subjected persecution,execution,genocide,holocaust at the hands of Israelis in Palestine,murder in Iraq at the hands of the U.S.and U.K.,Russians murdering millions in Afghansitan in the 80s and currently at the hands of the U.S.and U.K.History seems to repeat itself at the expense of Muslims around the world.What choices and options do Muslims have?.Are the Muslims doomed,forever?..Serbia needs to pay for what they have done and the West actually watched it happen and did nothing about it,some might say the West had a hand in the genocide of Muslims in Serbia.

  • Comment number 96.

    Although I might question what such an apology actually accomplishes and some of the motives behind it, the process of apologizing demands serious soul searching and examination of the past by the government issuing the apology, leading to discussions like this one. No matter how hollow the apology is, the fact that people, in government and not, are discussing the past and its implications in the hopes of some sort of reconciliation can only be a good thing.

  • Comment number 97.

    The Serebrenica massacre happened in the second and most violent phase of Jugoslav wars, the Bosnian wars which were fought among Bosnians trying to get independence from Jugoslavia taking (virtually as hostages!) both Croatian and Serbian populations (who together were about the 50% of the population living in 60-70% of lands - as muslims were more populous in terms of families living on the same lands). In the course of war, Americans, British and Germans who since the beginning demonised the Serbians (esteemed too pro-Russian because of their religion!!!) had told catholic Croatians to ally with muslim Bosnians and face united the orthodox Serbians - that finally happened after this massacre (not related anyway).

    I'll use Bosnians & army =muslims & Serbians & army =Serbians of Bosnia. The Serbian army comprised of local Serbians plus a few Serbian private volunteers from federal state of Serbia while the Bosnian army comprised of local Bosnians plus an unknown till today number (certainly several 100s) of Mujahedino-Talibans that came from Middle East/Middle-Asia just prior to the war using openly visible Saoudi money, paying people almost full monthly salaries to go to mosques and women to wear scarfs (a sinful practice according to islam of course) apparently fully covered from the US which shows to what extend US hides behind all those ""disaffected muslims militants"" that seem to appear everywhere the US wants to attack either helping them (as in Bosnia , East Timor, Cyprus) either against them (as in Afganistan, Iraq, Somaliaetc.)!

    It has to be noted that as Bosnias’ declaration was illegal (like that of Croatia), unilateral from the side of muslims and with no respect to the rest, the Serbians saw themselves as the Yugoslav army. They were led of course by upper Yugoslav army professional officers – albeit with no direct input from any Serbian federal state authorities since Yugoslavia had anyway a weird decentralised military system that ironically was “more than fitting” for the chaos of Yugoslav wars! The Bosnians saw theselves as independent Bosnias’ state army and were led most often by lower ex-Yugoslav military officers and were more decentralised roaming around more like guerrilla fighters than a proper state’s army. Since there were more Serbians than Bosnians in the Jugoslav army, Serbians were considerably better armed than Bosnians but at the end, this war was a kalasnikof against kalasnikof war. With the 1-2 tanks Serbians dragged around whenever they had the diesel to run them, did little. Bosnians got better armed aided by Croatians who had open provisions from... Europe that was funding and arming them (Germany, what else!). Nontheless, Serbians quickly got the upper hand against both Bosnians and Croatians.

    The town of Srebrenica and the village of Potocari pointed a small circle, a small enclave of muslim Bosnians in eastern Bosnia which was predominantly Serbian (consult map). As it was a small enclave, inside their territory Serbians who moved their military force in mass rather than dispersed did not concentrate there but went for the middle game – in chess terms, attacking Sebrenica would be the equivalent of a grandmaster opening his game at A3). It goes without saying that in the course of war, Srebrenica Bosnian muslims, as an enclave ,and like most enclaves Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian they would face eviction, probably a violent one, but up to that point Serbians had not done any serious move on them. If there was violence that was on a village against village (i.e. armed fights between men, armed often with hunting rifles and such…).

    However, for Bosnians who intended to get their independence… taking the entire federal Bosnian state regardless of the will of Croatians and Serbians who would be taken simply as … hostages, Srebrenica marked the eastern corner of the Bosnian state (consult the map) and thus strategically they had to create a corridon inside the Serbian territories and reach Srebrenica and defend it with teeth and nail. For Bosnians sending army to Srebrenica in chess was like opening at D4, for them it was the central game. Moreover, the local mulims of Srebrenica had already their own militia and had already exploited the fact that the neighbouring Serbian villages were relatively unarmed thus circulating in bands and spreading death – as French UN forces mentioned, there were cut heads, people found crucified on crosses and other such nasty things.One has to note that the UN forces wre already camped there in the nearby village of Potocari since 1993 and had already declared the whole enclave as a “safe haven” which enabled all these Bosnian attacks against the neighbouring Serbian villages (which were obviously not a safe haven!!!). A certain warlorf called Oric was known to have commanded numerous raids against Serbian villages and it was under his commands that the aforementioned crimes were committed. Nontheless after the war he was fully acquitted for having no responsibility over his troops on the basis he could not know what they did!!!

  • Comment number 98.

    So by spring 1995 Serbians decided to do something given the extense of Bosnian violence based on that “safe haven” and they did move down a sizeable army in what was for them spent time strategically but then they could not leave their compatriots being attacked by what they saw as bandits (the Bosnian army). Local Serbians around Srebrenica were complaining that the Serbian army had been too slow to move down to help them. And apparently they were indeed slow since muslims seemed to have all the time to gather their families and put them in Srebrenica while Bosnian leader Izefbekovic was dealing with the UN forces to maintain Srebrenica a “demilitarised zone” and offer them protection, thus the UN send the Dutch soldiers in Srebrenica.

    Now we are in summer 1995 and Serbians had reached the city of Srebrenica but kept at distance and started negotiations with the Dutch. However the Dutch had not disarmed the muslims who found themselves in the quite advantageous position of having their families protected (unlike the case of Serbs earlier), of themselves being protected by Dutch UN forces and of keeping their arms so that they could do more attacks. Dutch treating the Serbians very aggressively gave the wrong impression to muslims that they were their allies and that feeling incited them to do excursions out of Srebrenica and continue attacks against neighbouring Serbians on the side Serbians did not control yet.

    Serbians considered it as unacceptable (and it was unacceptable). Thus their leaders Karazic and Mladic demanded

    1) the full disarmin of all Bosnian army soldiers or independent muslim guerillas
    2) the arrest of the Bosnian responsibles to be sent for war crimes
    3) the handling of the city to Serbians who guaranteed no harm to civilians and non-armed dispersion of all the populations to their destinations of choice…(no matter if none of them would dare go back to their villages unarmed after what their army had done to neighbour Serbs).

    Dutch not only refused to talk but treated Serbians as a rogue army as if it was Serbians that had started the whole affair there. As a response to yet another muslim night raid, Serbians encircled the city and tightened their clamp. Dutch responded with some warning shots, Serbian replied with one warning canon shot. Meanwhile the population inside Srebrenica was getting anxious seeing that Dutch were getting less instead of getting more (Dutch were decreasing in number due to summer vacations and such… - I am not kidding…) while the overcrowded place lacked food and other materials of need, thus they accepted finally an agreement between Karazic and Holbrooke to evacuate the civilians, starting from women, children, sick and wounded etc.

    So while Serbians guaranteed and escorted the buses that got out the civilian population of the city and towards the village of Potocari where Dutch had their base, the Bosnian soldiers inside were giving up their arms – nonetheless not all of them accepted that fearful of what could happen next and many of them kept smaller arms (kalasnikofs, pistols etc.). At that point Dutch demanded an air raid against Serbians or they would go out. An air raid did not happen, and Dutch moved out. As Dutch moved out, many Bosnian men – perhaps their majority – feeling betrayed by Dutch soldiers started fleeing, moving out, marching on foot towards the west (to reach Bosnian muslim controlled areas). Others, stayed in.the city in hope of Serbians catching them merely as prisoners and exchange them with Serbian prisoners.

    Next day the bulk of the Serbian army got in the city. There was unknown number of men but there should not be more than some hundreds since the videos Serbs were taking (timed at time they entered) showed an empty town. However it as not completely empty as there were still Bosnian men and many of them armed thus there erupted instantly minor clashes between the two parties, which Serbians won easily without keeping any prisoners of course.

    However, at that point Serbians saw that:
    1) still quite many Bosnians had some weapons
    2) there were Bosnian soldiers hiding inside civilian ranks
    3) there were even the men of Bosnian local warlord Oric – who note had hidden inside civilians
    4) there were even some Afgans and Pakistani fighters

    Hence, taking Srebrenica was not deemed enough for them hence they started following the filed of Bosnian civilians and mingle around them searching for targets. One has to take into account that we talk about rural places where everyone knew each other. Thus the Serbian villager whose son’s throat was cut and whose wife was raped was there to try and recognise faces Bosnians that participated in the raid against his village, if not he would just kill the first face he would not like anyway. Evenmore, foreign fighters were of course easily recognised and shot without second question. Thus little by little Serbians started the killings on several localities around Dutch controlled Potocari and in the regions at west following the files of Bosnian men. There were also attack against women as the few hundred Durch that had not taken yet their summer holidays were not able to protect all the population but attacks on women were minimal apart the occasional rape, often committed by people on a retaliatory way and without killing the woman (since it was a retaliation). Children were harmed if only found in the middle of a fight, there was no aiming on them. Serbians clearly scanned for the men trying to find armed or disarmed members of the Bosnian army and guerrillas. So in the following 2-3 days on the overall about 5000 men were dead in a greater area around the enclave which rose to 7000 as Bosnian men started marching through the Serbian village areas they themselves had attacked for the previous 2 years (including a horrible Christmass raid where Oric’s men or as some say Afgan mujahedins had crucified several men of a Serbian village) thus Bosnian men, unarmed were an easy target for retaliatory attacks of Serbian militia. On many occasions Serbians called them to surrender, Bosnians surrendered in 10s or 100s and then soon 1 Serbian would fire one shot at a man he recognied and the rest would follow to kill all 10s and all 100s

  • Comment number 99.

    In a few words, that is the Srebrenica massacre.

    Was it a genocide?
    Certainly not.

    Was it a massacre?
    Certainly yes.

    Was it a war crime of the side of Serbians?
    Not exactly. It was a collection of localised Serbian crimes commited by what can be seen as a mix of soldiers, unruly guerrillas and local militia people, even local civilians (armed with blunt weapons). There was no order by Mladic or Karazic to slaughter everybody and down to basics there could do nothing about it. The will of Serbians to find a solution that could spare the lifes of civilians was clear since the beginning. There were more than 50,000 Bosnians mix of soldiers & civilians in the whole area, thus more men than women, thus say at least 25,000 men, at least 15,000 of fighting age & condition and of course out of them at least the 1/3 must had been soldiers/guerrillas of the Bosnian army. Srebrenica alledged dead (there were found only 5,000 in the area), represent that number – of course that does not imply that civilian men and even teenagers did not die while guerrillas like Oric got out hidden among women & children.

    What was the Bosnian army’s role?
    It was dubious. They used the local muslim population as an excuse and they were based on the UN forces ”provided immunity” to do their own collection of crimes – the role of warlord Oric who terrorised the area and who became the reason for the Serbian army’s arrival in the area, has been criminal and it was the reason for Serbian army’s presence in the area

    What was the Dutch UN forces’ responsibility?
    Simply said, if they were not there nothing of all that would had ever happened.

    Could it be that the UN technically instructed events to lead to the massacre?
    Frankly speaking 99 out of 100 elements show exactly that. There are even parts of Izefbekovic’s communication with NATO leaders that show that he actually himself wanted this to happen and to pass the cap of 5000 dead “in one go” so as to be used as as an excuse for a future attack against Serbians.

    Did Serbians do good to
    They lost their last vestiges of dignity trying to pack a big lie into a smaller lie then sign it to get on with their lifes. Who can blame them?

    What should had been done:
    Justice should had convoked together all:presidents: Serbian Milosevic, Bosnian Izefbekovic, Croatian Tujman etc.
    Justice should had convoked together all political & military leaders like Bosnian Oric or Serbian Mladic.
    Justice should treat Srebrenica a yet another dark page of Yugoslav wars, nothing more nothing less. More than 200,000 people died in these.
    Justice should remember that it has done nothing for any other war before and after including wars where current EU members were attacked.

  • Comment number 100.

    I am very much glad, that Serbia(n) [government] did the right thing in regards of apologizing for the Srebrenica Massacre......After, all of these many years.

    [D]

 

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