On the Wake of Angelina Jolie’s Film
What did Angelina Jolie do? She spoke up about the horrific drama of women who were raped, of what is the most painful wound for a human being: that another can desecrate and destroy you. The damaged sanctity of the human being, a Bosniak woman who was raped, disturbs the horizon of modern society, no matter that the United Nations, Europe, and the powers of the modern world simply waited while the Serbian army was attempting to “finish the job” in the silence of the Balkan hills. These powers knew what was happening and that makes them responsible. Political figures such as Boutrous B. Ghali, Yasushi Akashi, Philippe Morillone, Cyrus Vance, David Owen and dozens of others also knew.
The raping of women, the completion of the genocide in Srebrenica, the denial of war crimes, the denial of the Bosniak people, the efforts at destroying the state of Bosnia-Herzegovinia, and the killing of children during the siege of Sarajevo, all of these are heart-breaking testimonials on the moral decay of modern human society. The barbarism in the Greater Serbia ideology could have been stopped in a few days – that is clear today –if we remember Kosovo in 1999. A feeling of betrayal provokes disgust. The most difficult thing now is to preserve the human way of thinking about the situation we are in. It is clear why Bosniaks feel betrayed by the international institutions that promised to protect them and instead prevented them from defending themselves by enforcing an arms embargo. Someone sentenced Bosniaks to disapearance! This is a terrible understanding that Bosniaks carry in themselves today.
“In the Land of Blood and Honey” does not reflect an undeniable reality; instead, it creates an art work with symbolic content that we as human beings can understand and interpret. The movie is an artistic construction of a world in which we recognize meanings – the movie’s intent is not to prove a crime. The movie is not a tribunal and not a judicial institution, it is an artistic achievement par excellence.
Ethnocentrism and the cancer within the Greater Serbia ideology have metastasized, and we are in a living hell in Bosnia. Bosniaks do not have justice or the rule of law. The Greater Serbia ideology precludes the feeling of guilt and any sense of responsibility for the horrible crimes committed. Here we see the guiding intent in Radomir Konstantinović’s criticism of “the provincialist consciousness” in Serbian nationalism. This cannot lead to good. For no one!
Angelina Jolie is aware of this. She had the courage to bear witness to it. Bosnia is part of the world current again through the world of film and the artistic relation to the terrible crimes committed by Serbian forces against Bosniak women. Angelina Jolie reveals the defects of a culture in pursuit of a Greater Serbia ideology which represents a danger and evil to others. For this reason this culture must be dealt with responsibly and seriously. Angelina Jolie believes that love and justice should rule the world. This is the message of her movie delivered in the muddy waters of today’s culture of shallowness and forgetfulness.
Excerpted from Na tragu filma Angeline Jolie U zemlji krvi i meda
Translated by Kemal Hamulić
© 2012 Kemal Hamulić
© 2012 Senadin Lavić
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