Leopold von Ranke

Leopold von Ranke (born Dec. 21, 1795 – died May 23, 1886), leading German historian of the 19th century, whose scholarly method and way of teaching (he was the first to establish a historical seminar) had a great influence on Western historiography. He was ennobled (with the addition of von to his name) in 1865.

Sir Arthur Evans

Sir Arthur Evans (born July 8, 1851 – died July 11, 1941), British archaeologist who excavated the ruins of the ancient city of Knossos in Crete and uncovered evidence of a sophisticated Bronze Age civilization, which he named Minoan. His work was one of archaeology’s major achievements and greatly advanced the study of European and eastern Mediterranean prehistory.

Victor Hugo

Victor Hugo (born Feb. 26, 1802 – died May 22, 1885), poet, novelist, and dramatist who was the most important of the French Romantic writers. Though regarded in France as one of that country’s greatest poets, he is better known abroad for such novels as Notre Dame de Paris (1831) and Les Misérables (1862).

Michael Parenti’s “To Kill a Nation”

Michael Parenti’s “To Kill a Nation” is a book about the fall of Yugoslavia, the media’s role in facilitating its fall by demonizing the Serbs, and the West’s efforts to force the former states of Yugoslavia into the free-market. Parenti brings to the surface various unpublished reports and articles, data from independent parties and countries, blatantly hostile foreign policies of Western powers, and a lot of other valuable but essentially unknown information that proves the picture painted of the Serbs during the 90’s isn’t as simple as the media would have us think. He draws his information from official American public policy, neutral countries’ reports on what was happening on the ground (which was contrary to what was being reported by Western journalists), and other such concrete sources, which leaves little room for speculation and further strengthens his argument.

The Islamic Declaration by Izetbegović

“Just like an individual, a people that has accepted Islam is thereafter incapable of living and dying for any other ideal. It is unthinkable that a Muslim should sacrifice himself for any other ruler, no matter who he might be, or for the glory of any nation or party, because the strongest Islamic instinct recognizes in this a kind of paganism or idolatry. A Muslim can only die in the name of Allah and for the glory of Islam, or flee the battlefield.” (Page 6)

This should lay waste to claims that were made by many during the war that Izetbegović was fighting for a multi-ethnical state.

“The alternative is stark: either a move towards Islamic re-newal, or passivity and stagnation. For the Muslim peoples, there is no third possibility.” (Page 7)

This was the view of Izetbegović, but the fact is that this sort of thinking was far from shared by the majority of his people. Most Bosnian Muslims were secular and not particularly faithful. It only after the fall of Yugoslavia and almost four years of massacring of each other that his vision could be made possible.

“The Islamic order can only be established in countries where Muslims represent the majority of the population.If this is not the case, the Islamic order is reduced to mere power (as the other element – the Islamic society – is missing) and may turn to violence.” (Page 49-50)

Though it is true that Bosnia isn’t mentioned in the book, Izetbegovć of course didn’t plan to Islamize some other people than his own. He knew and many times emphasized that Bosnian Muslims were the biggest group in the country, and hence they were 7 per cent away from being in the majority and this close to establishing an Islamic order.

“The choice of this movement is always a tangible one and depends on a series of factors. There is, though, a general rule: the Islamic movement should and can start to take over power as soon as it is morally and numerically strong to be able to overturn the existing non-Islamic government, but also to build up a new Islamic one.” (Page 56-57)

This was why it was inevitable that, if Bosnia was to be independent, it would have to be as a federation. This was something which was agreed by everyone before the outbreak of the war, but Izetbegović revoked his signature from the agreement that was made in Lisbon. This happened under the influence of the United States, who encouraged him to declare the independence of a country where he still only represented a minority.

The Islamic Declaration by Izetbegović.1-38

The Islamic Declaration by Izetbegović.38-77

Speech at Gazimestan in 1989

Ever since Slobodan Milošević held his speech at Gazimestan on 28 June 1989, commemorating the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Kosovo, it has been elevated by Milosevic’s enemies, the media and the ICTY Prosecution into one of the key moments in his political career. This is because of a glancing reference he made to battles which the Serbs faced: the Prosecution alleged that the speech was a disguised call to arms. These allegations of nationalism persisted even tough throughout Milosevic’s decade-long political career, none of his very numerous enemies ever once managed to produce a single quotation from him which could be called “nationalistic.”

This is of course something Milošević himself brought up at his trial on occasions when he was accused of being a vicious nationalist. Testimonies at the trial from influential people such as Lord Owen, stating that Milošević was the only leader in the region who wanted peace, and who referred to him as being not a “nationalist” but “pragmatic”, prove that Milošević was not what he is still portrayed as. (Ironically enough, Lord Owen was called to stand witness by the Prosecution, but like in the case of many of the Prosecution witnesses its expectations backfired).

The speech, well it was in the style of this: “Serbia has never had only Serbs living in it. Today, more than in the past, members of other peoples and nationalities also live in it. This is not a disadvantage for Serbia. I am truly convinced that it is its advantage. National composition of almost all countries in the world today, particularly developed once, has also been changing in this direction. Citizens of different nationalities, religions, and races have been living together more and more frequently and more and more successfully.”

Source: “Travesty: The Trial of Slobodan Milošević” by John Laughland

Speech at Gazimestan in 1989