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Bosnia-Uncertain Paths To Peace

At this New York Times web special site you can take a tour of war-ravaged streets during the siege of Sarajevo. French photojournalist Gilles Peress was there during the final weeks of the siege, and his photographs and first-person narrative hauntingly bring to life the crisis. This site has two other divisions worth exploring. "Resources and Context" includes the most extensive chronologies on the region, from Yugoslavia's historic past up to the recent war. Also in this section, a collection of Times articles. Try the one titled "war crimes tribunal" for a good overview of the challenges and criticisms facing the court. The third division is "Forum," which includes highlights from a two-month online forum with experts such as Madeleine Albright and Christiane Amanpour.

International Monitor Institute

A definitive index of international video reports on war-torn countries where grave human rights abuses have taken place. Documentary and news clips covering the Balkan war can be viewed with RealPlayer software. For example, there is a video clip of Karadzic's threatening 1991 speech on the floor of parliament at the time when Bosnia-Herzegovina's Muslim delegation was about to declare independence from Yugoslavia.: Although the IMI doesn't own copyrights to any of the material, it offers a valuable index of what's out there. The International Monitor Institute's mission is to gather and collect any and all multimedia material, primarily video, pertaining to human rights in the Balkans, Rwanda, Burma, Cambodia and regions inhabited by the Kurds. The site also includes still-photo galleries of Kashmir, Bosnia, and Palestine from photographer Martin Sugarman. Also useful are extensive lists of links and contact information for donating related material.

Balkan Institute

A salon for serious Bosnia watchers and the place to learn about the history, the war and the aftermath. The Balkan Institute was established in 1995 to promote public understanding about the Balkan crisis and to monitor threats to peace in the region. Its co-director was one of three State Department officials who in 1993 resigned to protest US inaction against the Bosnia genocide. This non-government organization has an impressive steering committee and its site contains essays and commentary from prominent American and European experts. The section called "Balkan Watch" offers a weekly news summary of events in the region. All the links on this site offer thorough and probing analyses of particular issues. Try 'Background Briefs/Dayton Peace Accord' for an accessible translation of that pivotal agreement.

ex-YU Press

Originally from Yugoslavia, Marko Kocic is an engineering grad student at Northeastern University who in his spare time offers a great service to researchers and anyone who wishes they could read Serbo-Croat. Kocic translates a sampling of current articles from the former and current Yugoslavia press. He says he started his site in 1995 "as an attempt to raise awareness of the less-than-democratic practices of the nationalist regimes." His goal is to let readers compare for themselves coverage from both "patriotic" and "independent" publications. There are quite a few articles which deal with human rights violations in Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia, and a few articles about suspected and indicted war criminals (Kordic, Lugar, and an interview with Seselj). The bi-weekly Duga ("Rainbow") features a column by Slobodon Milosevic's wife Mirjana Markovic. The nationalist Velika Srbija ("Greater Serbia") is the monthly publication put out by the Serbian Radical Party and notorious paramilitary leader Vojislav Seselj. Click on his name to read an interview with him.

Karadzic Interview

From the newspaper Drentse Courant. In 1997, a Dutch journalist spent the day with Karadzic and family and conducted what could be one of the last interviews with him since he's gone into hiding. Includes pictures of the most-wanted war criminal playing with his grandson.

The Tribunal

This is the official site for the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and it contains more information and technical documents than most visitors would need. One helpful document is the schedule of Tribunal hearings under "Latest Documents and News." To read court transcripts, including the Rule 61 proceeding of Karadzic and Mladic, click "Tribunal Cases" then "Trial Chambers." (Rule 61 permits evidence and indictments to be entered into open court when a suspect cannot be apprehended. It is sometimes inaccurately referred to as a "trial in absentia" but such trials are forbidden by the Tribunal.) Once inside Trial Chambers, select a suspect to find a copy of the initial indictment and any trial transcripts.

ATROCITIES, in detail

The war in Bosnia can only be fully comprehended by looking at the details, the day to day atrocities that were happening on the ground over a four-year period. The acts of war found in eight US State Department reports have been fully indexed and numbered by Professor Michael Sells and Aida Premilovac of Haverford University. Substantiated reports of torture, rape, willful killing, forcible expulsion, destruction of property are all here, in concise, dated entries, like the diary of an unending nightmare. Try the clickable map of Bosnia to see where a few atrocities occurred and who is allegedly responsible. For something different, scroll all the way down to the bottom of the top page to see what the Aladza mosque of Foca looked like before its destruction. An author and professor of comparative religions, Sells initiated the site in 1992 and organized the Community of Bosnia group to fight genocide. Fifty students from ethnically-cleansed areas now attend Haverford on a special scholarship that he helped create.

THE SUSPECTS

At last count there were 79 people indicted for war crimes from the former Yugoslavia. The Coalition for International Justice keeps a fairly up to date, easy to use, interactive grid of indictees. From the first level you can access the suspect's indictment, photo if available, and reports on his latest sightings and hang-outs. The Home button at the bottom of the page brings you to "War Criminal Watch," a page that offers a few major articles about the indicted and convicted. More of these articles can be found under the "news" button on the frame. If you've sighted an alleged war criminal, CIJ wants to know. The "feedback" section accepts reports around the clock.

The CIJ is an international NGO (non-government organization) that supports the UN's war crimes tribunals via legal assistance, fundraising and advocacy. Its mission "is not to convict suspects before they have had chance for a fair trial, simply to promote the rule of law and justice in the international community."

The New Yugoslavia

This site can best be thought of as a classy brochure for the new Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro). Its resources are neatly organized into sections such as News, Culture, Phonebook, and Library. But indignation characterizes the content in the Library/The Third Yugoslavia section,which stresses that Serbs have long been misunderstood and are unjustly forced into international isolation. On the main page, click "famous Serbian icons" to explore an extensive gallery of orthodox art. In other sections, striking photographs convey the beauty of Serbia.

 


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