Offence Against the Taboo  Cover Image

Prestup protiv tabua
Offence Against the Taboo

Author(s): Teofil Pančić
Subject(s): Politics / Political Sciences
Published by: Helsinški odbor za ljudska prava u Srbiji
Keywords: military action in Croatia; Storm; war in ex Yugoslavia;

Summary/Abstract: Cheerful countenances of President and Prime Minister of Croatia at the anniversary celebration of victory, and gloomy ones of President and Prime Minister of Serbia at the anniversary mass for victims. That was the scene this August, like in previous Augusts, since that early August 1995 when the \"military action \'Storm\'\" took place. Who would ever guess that those people were in fact marking the same event/anniversary? Well, we have learnt from anthropological anecdotes about primitive tribes that their understanding of fortune and misfortune, as well as of the good and evil, may be rather «relativistic,» in a rudimentary, tribal way: \"It is good or fortunate when we raid their villages, kill their cattle and rape their women, and evil or misfortune when they do it to us.» But in the example from the beginning of this text we are not dealing with charming natives from impenetrable jungles, but rather with serious, grown-up and educated men, in pricey clothes, we are dealing with elite representatives of the two-at least in principle...-democratic European countries which cherish good-neighbourly relations and are rushing towards famous »Euro-Atlantic integrations», overtaking each other on an open European highway. \"Storm\" and related comments are therefore only the tip of the iceberg or of a big frozen stone under which had been swept all we should know about «what has happened to us», at least for the sake of avoiding the repeat of such events. But Belgrade political, and largely intellectual establishment is of the opinion that such things should not be responsibly and rationally discussed, for at play is an extensive intentional emotionalization of discourse about recent wars and consequences thereof, whereby the said emotionality is of course charmingly selective: it is reserved only for \"our victims\" which are by default, the only innocent victims...Less because they are victims, more because they are our victims... And what happens when such a taboo is radically contested, is best seen by reactions to the two sentences uttered by a local intellectual and politician. And those reactions were tantamount to a local publicistic storm. But let us explain the sequence of events: Žarko Korać in the days preceding the \"jubilee\" of controversial \"Storm\", probably provoked by the local (Serb) absolute and consistent isolation, that is stubborn attempts to abstract from any real and historical context the story about \"Storm\" and the ensuing exodus of Serb population, wrote the following: \"Are all the victims from the column of expellees innocent victims? Don\'t some of them have personal responsibility for what has happened?\" The response to those two sentences in the shape of a specific odour of a violent and intense outburst of public hatred could have surprised even those who believed that they they were immune to all surprises...

  • Issue Year: 2006
  • Issue No: 097-098
  • Page Range: 13-14
  • Page Count: 2
  • Language: Serbian