Bosnia and Herzegovina

Gojko Beric looks in the July 13, 1998 issue of the Split weekly "Feral Tribune" at the renewed candidacy of Alija Izetbegovic for the post of President of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Since he changed his mind, informing the Bosniaks that he will run again for the post of President in the September elections, Izetbegovic suddenly started to show signs of vitality and decisiveness.
He, who knew nothing about the crimes of his commanders in Sarajevo and Grabovica, about war profiteering of his confidential people, about lawlessness and corruption in the capital, or about the thieves in his own party - is suddenly becoming aware of all this. He called in the representatives of federal prosecutor's office and courts, and visibly angry and excited, gave them a lesson: "I have full drawers of citizens' complaints, indicating some absurd phenomena, so I can conclude that some people among the prosecutors and judges are not doing their job."

Izetbegovic was recently promoted to the post of honorary doctor of law at the Marmara university in Istanbul. Explaining on that occasion his stance towards his own profession, he said: "For me, the law was not only a profession. It was my vocation, my belief, some form of my personal philosophy." Such devotion to law and justice sounds very noble, but is in complete collision with reality. Cloned ideal of his youth was not the reason for which the Bosniak leader went down so hard on his own judiciary. He did this due to the pressure of the public and the international community, which sees Sarajevo as a seat of organized crime. Still, the main motive is the pre - electoral campaign, even though Izetbegovic does not have a serious competitor in the Bosniak electoral body in a new run for an old post.

Particular attention is drawn to Izetbegovic's insistence that the crime in Grabovica is clarified, when the members of the BiH Army killed 32 Croatian civilians. The crime was committed five years ago, at the time of the Bosniak - Croat conflict, but the investigation was never concluded.

Attacking the judiciary, Izetbegovic himself was put under a series of accusations. He never accepted or denied the accusations that he was involved in trading territories. His position is that he has no reason to apologize or be responsible to anybody, which is a characteristic of every charismatic leader.

What is left of true Sarajevans, who currently comprise less than a third of the citizens of their city are bearing the lawlessness and rule of war profiteers in a typically Bosniak manner: discussing the subject in their homes and in cafes. It is a general opinion that it is Izetbegovic' fault that the situation has come to this.It was Izetbegovic who promoted the former criminals into military commanders during the war, thinking that they could be the only ones that will guard his back. Those among them that have survived have grabbed for themselves the title of "legendary defenders of Sarjaevo," and have usurped the most attractive business real estate. Today, nobody can touch them, even Izetbegovic himself.

Source: Split weekly "Feral Tribune," July 13, 1998

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