Mladic the Monster

May 30, 2011

Our failure to respond to the Serbian atrocities prolonged the slaughter.
By Christopher Hitchens

"I suppose it is possible that the arrest of Gen. Ratko Mladic is as undramatic and uncomplicated as it seems and that in recent years he had been off the active list and gradually became a mumbling old derelict with a rather nasty line in veterans' reminiscences. His demands would probably have been modest and few: the odd glass of slivovitz in company with a sympathetic priest (it's usually the Serbian Orthodox Church.. "

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Anonymous said...

I am a long time follower of Christopher Hitchens and I agree with him on everything even his critical account of Serbian nationalism. Being a Serbian, who survived the war I have only one question for Hitchens. Why doesn't he take a critical stance on the other nationalists in Yugoslavia that did just as many horrific acts as the Serbians. My house in Croatia was taken from my family at gun point, and we were lucky to escape with our lives. I will never forget the band of Croats standing in front of our house with guns and knives shouting "something smells here." When Gotovina was sentenced by the Hague a few weeks back, Hitchens did not write one single word. I am against Serbian nationalism as much as I am against Croat or Bosnian. In my family every last person was anti Milosevic and many of them lost jobs and wealth to fight his regime. Why is it that the Serbian suffering is never talked about?

Brendan James said...

With all due respect, did you not read the article? Hitchens goes out of his way to address your very point:

"...large *Serbian* minorities in Krajina and Kosovo were being cleansed from places where they had long residence and deep roots."

Which brings him to his mini-thesis about how Mladic's tactics were repeated against Serbs later:

"If anyone should have been agitating for the arrest and arraignment of Mladic over the past few years, surely it should have been the Serbian rank and file?"

Anonymous said...

Dear Anonymous above me,

I agree with you completely. The Serbs did some terrible things, but there were many terrible things done to them as well, and no one seems to care. It's so one sided that it makes me sick. I honestly have to say I am disappointed in Hitchens, of whom I am a huge fan, for keeping this trend up.

Michael Dawson said...

Hitchens is just trying to burnish his endorsement of the "War on Terror," the illegal U.S. re-invasion of Iraq, and U.S. unilateralism.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous above me,you realize that the reason the narrative of the conflict is so one-sided is because the casualties were themselves very lopsided right?To give an analogy to my point,the Allies committed a lot of war crimes in ww2 as well,but in the face of the holocaust its not so salient anymore is it?

Anonymous said...

Official estimates of people killed in the Yugoslav wars totals:

20,000 Croats
64,000 Muslims
32,000 Serbs

Twice as many Muslims died compared to Serbs. Two thirds of the Croats died compared to Serbs.

Your analogy WWII deaths:

25,410,000 Allies deaths
6 million Jews
5,087,000 Axis deaths

Six times as many Allies died as Axis.

You still comfortable with comparing Serbs to Nazis?

Anonymous said...

Excuse me, but the 6 million Jews figure quoted above, sacrosanct as it may seem, is outdated to say the least (figures for individual concentration camps having been revised downwards very considerably in recent years by the Polish authorities). The 25,410,000 figure is inflated for the same reason, namely Stalinist exaggerations. On the other hand, Germany alone lost more than 5 million people in WW II and the immediate aftermath.


Christopher reads from Hitch-22: A Memoir