SREBRENICA 1995-2005 : A WARNING TO EUROPE
For more than 10 years, the
horrific pictures of the massacre of Srebrenica and the war in Ex-Yugoslavia
have raged merciless in front of our eyes: more than 200,000 victims,
2,000,000 deportees or exiles, towns and villages gone to ruin, buildings
and bridges damaged, hospitals and schools destroyed by gun shots, monuments
of culture and faith profaned, all kinds of violence and tortures, mass
rapes and humiliation, concentration camps and ethnic cleaning, the cruel
murder of cities and memories, innumerable lives of common people crippled
and torn forever.
Human suffering cannot be summed
up. Could things get any further or worse? Such a question ought to be asked
both to the aggressors and those "Gentlemen" who did almost nothing to stop
this war raging in the heart of Bosnia and Croatia, on the border of the
Mediterranean Sea, in the very heart of Europe itself.
Already ten years ago, we stressed
the inadequacy of the UN to world changes, a NATO still captive of the Cold
War scenario, the European Union that is unable to get enough state power to
guide Europe, a tormented Russia that tried in vain to undertake the role
once belonging to the Soviet Union, languishing on the contrary in a huge
political and cultural crisis, a UMPROFOR entrusted with the paradoxical and
absurd role of "peace keeping" where there's no war. What about all these
slightly concealed games, the Great Powers and their interests, the broken
"ceasefires", the constantly infringed agreements, derided pacts and
ridiculed negotiators, overridden and derided international resolutions,
humanitarian convoys which also became object of murderous anger?
This ordeal swept through Vukovar,
Srebrenica, Gorazde, Mostar, Bihac and actually started and ended in
Sarajevo; more than 1,000 days clenched in a fratricidal war that even beat
the sad record of the siege of Leningrad.
The multicultural and
multinational reality of Bosnia-Herzegovina was mortally hurt at the time,
along with our faith in a world where cultural and national pluralism ought
to be possible and granted. Brutality and barbarism were fed by indifference
Europe has washed its hands off
Bosnia's fate and its governments denied their responsibilities and go on
blaming each other. Maastricht has morally capitulated in front of
Srebrenica and Sarajevo.
Our values and principles have
been mocked and our dignity has never been as low as it is now.
Inspired by an ideal of peace and
respect of human rights, but on the other hand having followed the
overpowering economic prospective of Maastricht, the progressive unification
of Europe has morally collapsed.
Europe, whose own existence is
based upon its capacity to assure peace without war and occupation, has
failed this objective in Bosnia and the rest of Ex-Yugoslavia. This shows
that there is still a long and hurdled path to go.
Confronted with such a
humiliation, we, Mediterranean intellectuals, can only cry out our wrath
-even though lost in a desert as it often happened in the past- and commit
ourselves to the creation of a United States of Europe, in order to ensure
peace, social equality and democracy.
The victory of the No to the
ratification of the European Constitution in France and the Netherlands
intended to freeze the EU in its current hybrid structures, where the
decisional power lies in the hands of non elected bodies. The reaction to an
unleashed neo-liberalism, also criticised by American conservatives, has
shown that the conscience of European people has understood the when the
funeral tolls were resounding then and are heard again today, after the
discovery of another mass grave. Horrific acts that did not stir the
conscience of those who are entrusted to decide on our behalf or in our
Today, after ten years of
massacres in Srebrenica, we address these words to the politicians and the
remains of human conscience: let’s work together to build our united Europe,
against the hurdles of bureaucracy; to reinforce dialogue with the
Mediterranean States and complete the European Union and the
Euro-Mediterranean Partnership including the Balkans, which are essential to
a lasting peace and development.
We call upon our friends in the
Mediterranean area, Europe and the whole World to join and support us order
that the thousands of victims in Srebrenica and elsewhere, will not have
been sacrificed in vane.
Naples, 6th June 2005
Appeal written by Predrag Matvejevic’ and Michele Capasso
Walter Schwimmer, Claudio Azzolini, Nullo Minissi.
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