THE PLANK JULY 22, 2008
In the wake of the
capture of genocidal former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic, TNR
looks back at some of our most incisive (and often
prescient) writing on the conflict in Serbia and Bosnia following Karadzic's
systematic massacre of nearly 8,000 of his countrymen in 1995.
turmoil of a post-Karadzic Bosnia,
Power wrote in 1996:
is the danger to Bosnia's
existence as overt as in Republika Srpska, the Serb half of Bosnia piloted
from behind the scenes by Karadzic
and now from the democratic stage by a clan of ruthless nationalists. The
"Pale Mafia"--whose ideas of ethnic separatism won out in the
war--have made no secret of their plan to do everything in their power to
sabotage the Dayton
Maass filed a vivid
dispatch in 1998 chronicling the horrific consequences of the Bosnia-Serbian
Mujkanovic is a human metaphor for healing the wounds of war. When the conflict
began, Mujkanovic was finishing his work as a surgical intern in Tuzla, and the Bosnian
army decided to send him, through Serb lines, into the besieged enclave of
Srebrenica, which had just a few doctors, and none with surgery experience. In
Srebrenica, Mujkanovic often operated by candlelight, under fire, with no
anesthesia. He lost precise count but thinks he performed 1,400 operations in
nine months. He amputated legs and arms, pulled shrapnel out of stomachs and
heads, and so on.
And bluntly outlining
the moral and practical necessity of bringing Serbian war criminals to justice,
Kelly determined in 1999:
and his fellow gangsters, free and empowered, will always agitate for conflict.
That is the only hand they can play; peace for them means jail, or death.
These archived works from
some of TNR's most insightful writers, including, Leon
Wieseltier and Adam
Smith, provide stark testimony of the 13 years of turmoil following
Karadzic's brief, terrible reign.