dejancs on Tue, 30 Mar 1999 15:59:33 +0100

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Syndicate: Re: open response to dejan sretenovic

Dear Marko,

Thank you for your attention, but you got me wrong. I was
trying to describe the general mood of Serbian people these
days, not to defend the regime.I am not a propagandist of the regime but an
individual who had a lot of troubles in this country working
for Soros Foundation. Swastika and the inscription "NATO
spies" appeared on the facade of the Foundation last morning.
Hard days for those fighting for human rights and democracy
in Yugoslavia are coming. We may disagree on certain matters,
but i still think that all 3 sides are to blame for the 
outbreak of the war.You said I simplify things, but I am
afraid that you are the one who simplifies things. You know
Serbian sentimnets about Kosovo and that's the main obstacle 
for the Serbs to face the reality they are living in. On the 
other side,Albanians have also reached national consensus 
about the independence of Kosovo which means that no 
Albanian politican has the authority to sign any document 
which won't give Kosovo a guarantee for the future separation 
from Serbia. Believe me, Serbian and Kosovo realities are 
more complex than you can imagine. Two years ago SCCA 
Belgade, together with Cultural Center Dodona from Prishtine
organized an exhibition of Albanian artists from Kosovo in 
Belgrade. At that time (June 97) it seemed that personal 
communication between artistic communities from two cities 
could be a channel for the renewal of mutual understandig. 
Albanian and Serbian artists even started to make plans for a
a joint show in Prishtine. But, we were naive. Our Albanian
friends suffered public attacks from certain Albanian 
politicians and colleagues for exhibiting in Belgrade.
Serbian authorities and nationalists did not pay attention 
at all. In December 1997, I was in Prishtine giving two 
lectures, one for Serbian and one for Albanian art students.
The division was obviuos, even the personal relations 
between senior artists who once studied together were 
deteriorated. And the fear for uncertain future to come was
evident with everybody. I am not a politicain to offer a 
solution, especially now, but I do not believe that this 
intervention without clear idea about the consequences 
could contribute to the solution of Kosovo problem. On the 
contrary, it only deteriorated the situation and gave 
Yugoslav regime oportunity to start a final fight with KLA 
accompanied with the exodus of civilians. And the KLA took 
the advantage of air raids and started to provoke Serbian 
forces as well. Yes, people in Serbia think that this is 
an imposed and unjust war beyond all international 
principles. It not only made things worse but also 
threatens the stabilty of Balkan region and global 
interantional relations. Dear Marko, I think
that Western politics felt into a deep decadence with no
sense of responsability and now they sweat trying to find
the most adequate way to get out of this Balkan koshmar. Is
this going to be a new Vietnam? Is it going to do any harm 
to Yugoslav president? I saw him yesterday on the TV. He was
smiling. He is probably the only politican involved in this
conflict who still smiles. I might be wrong, but I still
stand for the lines I wrote about the calculation with the
military threat. 

I was just to write about media propaganda here when I got
your response and I'll take this opportunity to tell you
how it looks like from here.There are no information in Yugoslav
media about the fights and humanitarian catastrophe on Kosovo
and the assassination of Albanian politicans. When I wrote 
that Serbs will pardon Milosevic for previous deeds, I ment
that people here are still living in oblivion and that this
agression will produce not only total oblivion of the roots and 
results of Serbian nationlism in the last decade, but 
for the real state of affairs on Kosovo. Yes, City Council 
of Belgrade organizes each day concerts of rock, pop and 
turbo-folk music on the main square in order to improve the
morality of the citizens. But, these poor people know 
nothing about catastrophe on Kosovo. As I wrote before, 
we live in a complete media darkness. You ask where are the
students? Most of them are hiding from the mobilization.
Protests in this situation?! Let's be serious. It is easy 
to stay in Slovenia and dream about the protests aginst the
regime in the middle of the war. If people protest aginst
the aggression it does not mean that they identify themsleves
with the regime but with the their homeland and its future.
And please, have in mind the difference between patriotism
and patridiotism.

Best regards

Dejan Sretenovic 


-----Original Message-----
From: marko peljhan <>
To: Dejan <>
Subject: open response to dejan sretenovic
Date: Tue, 30 Mar 1999 00:30:46 +0200

> dear sretenovic,
> i have read and re-read your posting on war and peace, and must say i
> cannot
> and should not agree with the views expressed.
> your simplifications of dead politicians, after they accept something or
> not
> are mere demagogy, leading nowhere and excusing a dictator, who is in power
> for 12 years now.
> you say that the serbian people excused him for his previous misbehaving
> after the nato air strikes on military targets in yugoslavia have started.
> have you?
> you are talking about families in kragujevac that would face hunger? give
> us
> a break, please. kragujevac and serbia are far from hunger now and you know
> it! maybe you do not have gasoline and some problems with getting to the
> nearest store, but that is still not hunger and when hunger arrives, the
> same forces that are bombing your countries military installations and
> armed
> forces now, will start dropping food aid. that seems to be the pattern.
> BUT  kosovo definitely is not far from hunger, think of that!
> your army and police, which are being attacked (you obviously and hopefully
> are not and will not be) have killed many people in the past year in kosovo
> and are stepping up in the past three months.  are you aware of this, or
> you
> still believe this is western propaganda. where is veton? where is rugova?
> where is radio21? where are mine, our friends now? dead maybe? for some of
> them we already know the answer.
> yes. some of them are dead.
> where are the people who signed the agreement, that would basically give
> kosovo back what it had in the 1974 constitution in yugoslavia, some sort
> of
> autonomy and self determination and was taken away with the serbian
> constitutional reforms in the beginning of the 90's. the constituency did
> not protest then. the constituency agreed.
> but the regime took away people's schools, education, culture. to almost 2
> million people, that enjoyed all of that in the near past.  so, why is that
> plan so bad? why sretenovic? because of the holy land? because of the blood
> in the soil?
> rather than criticising something that was already dead because your
> government decided so long ago, think about your friends who were mobilised
> into the serbian and yugoslav armies now, think about the people who will
> have to fight for milosevic, as you clearly state, for him, almost
> personnaly. thing of those who  being his only real opponents for such a
> long time now do not have a chance even to live.  probably being sacrificed
> in some stupid "yugo" barracks who we both probably know the looks and
> architecture and really killed by a gbu or a tomahawk or whatever device
> nato will use not to try to  hurt you? think of them and try to help them
> evade this service. mobilise! organise! fight the fascism of your regime
> and
> the army you are all a hostage of! fight your absolutely surrealist state
> media! do not behave as if serb patriotism is everything you are left with
> because of these strikes! do not make life simpler for yourself! what about
> humanity? is patriotism larger than humanity? what about your friends,
> maybe
> family, who are in the army and do not want to be there? it is time for
> action and decision! why did you close your foundation and organisation in
> protest of the strikes? go to work, now, now it is time to work! help
> people! help people understand what is going on.  we will try do our share
> but will you? we supported you in 1996-97? where is that dissent now? where
> are the thousands of students? why nobody speaks for the mobilised?  why do
> they rally behind the regime? do they identify with the regime now?  what
> about the thousands of albanians that have nowhere to go? what about the
> thousands of serbians who do not agree with this regime, that have nowhere
> to go? what are you saying, that everybody is absolutely gone nuts there
> and
> supports this fascist regime? well, if i am not wrong, mr. milosevic was
> voted into power by his constituency that he later betrayed many times, or
> maybe, as it seems now, did not? please enlighten me and the colleagues on
> this list.
> i know this is a lot of questions for one short mail, but i want to
> understand, because obviously, or maybe, i do not.
> again, i know, is speak from here, where there is no milosevic nor his
> paramilitaries and police units....
> but then again, you are there and you can still have concerts and we can
> see
> people dance on the wreckage of a machine of, there are some
> interesting details and contours here, which you might help us to
> understand. nato started, but now it is your share of the job and yours is
> the hardest!
> stay safe and hope to hear from you soon.

> marko peljhan