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Sunday, May 14, 2006

About Town

The town we'd been deployed to was perhaps fairly representative of the country as a whole.

Prior to the war the town had been of mixed ethnic groups and the Bosnian Croats and Bosniacs had lived quite happily together.

During the early stages of the conflict the area had been defended against a Bosnian Serb advance.

Later on when infighting between Bosnian Croats and Bosniacs had broken out in the country the town split.

The main road through the town had become a front line with Bosnian Croats on one side and Bosniacs on the other. Former neighbours and friends had become bitter enemies.

Although the fighting had ended by the time I arrived the results of the conflict were still very evident. Bullets had pockmarked every house close to the road. Roofless houses, an enduring sight from the country, were everywhere. The open areas around the town were now draped with white tape and signs warning of minefields. The population remained deeply suspicious of each other.

17 Comments:

Blogger gonorr said...

With a bit of eye squinting the picture looks a bit like Imber.

7:51 am  
Blogger cookie monster said...

actually, i reckon that both looks and sounds like the village i lived in when i was out in the wilds of kent!

8:00 am  
Blogger Universal Soldier said...

Imber - *shivers*.

Cookie - I'd always heard Kent was a bit of a harsh place.

9:59 am  
Blogger greavsie said...

I stayed in a small Germna village for a while and the historical 'front-line' between the catholic half and the Protestant half was the smallest stream you've ever seen, which bisected the main road through.

10:34 am  
Blogger FOUR DINNERS said...

When will people ever learn? Don't let it be never.

11:35 am  
Blogger PI said...

I'm ashamed to admit that I don't know what stirred it up in the first place.

3:25 pm  
Blogger Katy Newton said...

I also get very confused about how the Yugoslavian thing happened. I think US has a book that he recommends but I can't remember what it was called...

*looks hopefully at US*

5:13 pm  
Blogger Universal Soldier said...

The Bridge on the River Drina is a novel that encapsulates quite well some of the historical causes of conflict.

For an explanation of the immediate causes to the last war and what happened during the conflict then I'd recommend this Wikipedia article.

5:44 pm  
Blogger PI said...

Thanks: I've read the article. will try the novel - a form which makes it easier to grasp I think for dumfkopfs like me.
Last night I watched The English Patient again, which has a fairly complicated plot but because it is a great love story, concentration is riveted and all is clear.
Why oh why he leave her alone in the cave to die?
Sorry!
Carry on.

6:48 pm  
Blogger The Boy said...

Wherever tribes exist there will be conflict. Man needs to belong (why do we all hang out at each other's blog sites), and belonging to one group means not belonging to another. Its when you see the tribes erupt into hatred, and average people become killers that you know our civilisation is only wafer thin.

9:54 am  
Blogger d34dpuppy said...

u have no idea how beautiful that picture is

5:37 am  
Blogger crisiswhatcrisis said...

Problem = religion. Everyone insists that no, actually, I'm right, and you're going to hell because you're wrong. Oh, and I really need to convince everyone else that I'm right (so that you can't) - because of course proof that I am right is a little thin on the ground - by shooting your family in the face to really make my point.

Repeat ad nauseam for pretty much every other civil war, and come to that some of the multinational ones.

10:57 am  
Blogger d34dpuppy said...

all war is based on greed by religion

7:13 pm  
Anonymous Kris said...

I always thought it strange that the main road through towns often seemed as if two group were sat each side blindly shooting at each other - the peppered road signs and sides of houses were always a lot worse off. How did that work, I assume incoming fire had the right of way?

The road out of Mostar to the south seemed the worst - I calculated a 2 inch gap on average between bulletholes. Lots of rounds + bored or a nasty firefight?

3:02 pm  
Blogger Just Jane said...

Practically every roof in Dubrovnik is brand new for obvious reasons.

5:03 pm  
Blogger d34dpuppy said...

do u care if i print out tha piccy ? i really love it

11:32 pm  
Blogger Universal Soldier said...

D34D - help yourself mate.

7:50 am  

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