Stop the Revisionist History of the Genocide against Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Eric Kaier, President University of Minnesota

202 Morrill Hall
100 Church Street S.E. Minneapolis, MN 55455

Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies University of Minnesota
100 Nolte Center West
315 Pillsbury DriveMinneapolis, MN 55455

Faynesse Miller, President Hamline University

Hamline University

1536 Hewitt AvenueSaint Paul, MN 55104

Esteemed Presidents and Faculty and Staff members at the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies: 

Recently I viewed a documentary "5 who survived, Children of Genocide” which aired on KCTI12 Public Television. In it it shows the story of a Bosnian Serb Dragana Vidovic, Dr. Ellen Kennedy goes on to explain that Dragan's "Serb town was attacked and her life was changed forever". Dragana talked about "the evil in the country when her town was attacked". Dragana claimed from 1992-93 her town was attacked by another town next to hers (it sounds like the town maybe Bosanski Brod or Derventa). She claims she had no clue what was happening in Srebrenica in 1995. She immediately stated that the Croatian Army went into Bosnia where she was and killed or removed all the Serbs where she lived.The TV shows the famous image of a Bosnian Serb police officer (Goran Jelsic aka the Serb Adolf) in Brcko who chases down a civilian in the street and executed him. Giving the impression that it was a Croat killing a Serb when in actuality it was Serb police officer killing a muslim in the photo. She then talks about how the Croats attacking Serbs wasn't "big news". She claims she didn't know why the war in Bosnia happened, she makes it sound like the refugees who ended up in Austria and Germany had it better than she did because she wanted to leave. If you watch the program your take away would be... Bosnian Croats committed Genocide against the Bosnian Serbs in the war in Bosnia and Herzigovina. Ellen J.Kennedy is a PhD Director for the "Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies at the University of Minnesota who produced this at best factually inaccurate, at worst apologetic piece of Serbian propaganda. The narrative in the documentary follows closely to Genocide denial claims made by apologists for the Genocide in Srebrenica which is an internationally recognized act of Genocide committed by the Bosnian Serb leadership of Radovan Karadzic, Ratko Mladic and subordinates as well as the Serbian State itself.

This documentary was produced in 2010 less than a year after the University of Minnesota had to respond to the use of Genocide denier Carl Savich being used as a reference on the website of the Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. For the last 8 years this documentary has been broadcasted on Public Television giving a misleading explanation of the war in Bosnia and the Genocide committed against the Muslim Bosniak community. The use of an image of a Serbian War criminal Goran Jelsic, executing a Bosniak Muslim while she is explaining her belief that Croats committed crimes in her community while stating in the video “I have no clue why that was happening there” in explaining Srebrenica while bemoaning the fact that the war in her town wasn’t properly covered. This conflates the issue of war and war crimes and the specific crime of genocide which is defined as "the deliberate and systematic extermination of a national, racial, political, or cultural group.” and cannot be contributed to simple act of war which took place in her town.

This documentary is incredibly damaging to the victims of Genocide and the survivors. Outside of the initial act of Genocide the next most damaging experience for those who survive the horrors of Genocide is the denial or minimizing of such crimes, as if their pain and suffering doesn’t exist. 

Next month is 23rd anniversary of the Srebrenica Genocide and at the State Capitol we will be hosting an event on July 11th to commemorate the victims and to help support the survivors. It is incredibly insensitive and difficult for survivors to view such pieces of propaganda and traumatize the survivors even further. 

The website of World Without Genocide also states the following "After the fall of Srebrenica, which had been designated as one of the UN safe areas, the Croatians and Bosniaks combined their forces to launch Operation Storm, an offensive campaign to push Serbian forces out of the Krajina region in the northwest corner of Bosnia. For the previous two years, Bosniak and Croat forces led separate efforts against the Serbs.[20] Yet by combining their forces, the Croatian-Bosniak offensive was able to push Serb forces, as well as 200,000 civilians, out of Krajina and into other Serb-dominated areas.[21] Although Operation Storm succeeded in pushing back Serbian forces, it also created one of the largest refugee populations in Europe.” Quoting a certain Adam Jones. No reasonable person draws the conclusion that the Bosnian Army was involved in Operation Storm. This is an argument that no reasonable person has raised. There is zero evidence Bosnian Army was involved in Operation storm, it also says it took place in Bosnia which is also a fabrication as the fighting was around the rebel Croatian Serb capital of Krajina no where near the location of Bosnian Army forces who never left Bosnian soil during the war.

The Bosnian community here in the Twin Cities is asking for four things…

1.Issue an apology for creating and broadcasting this misleading piece of propaganda.

2.Stop Broadcasting this misleading and offensive documentary.

3.Remove references to the Bosnian Army being involved in the war in Croatia and Operation Storm.

4.Meet with the local Bosnian Muslim community and Srebrenica Survivors to better understand the Genocide and the struggles facing the survivors.


I look forward to your reply.


Sincerely,


Chris Mathieu

 


Institute Research Genocide Canada
Professor Emir Ramic


The Congress of North American Bosniaks 
Eldin Elezovic


the Islamic Community of Bosniaks in Minnesota 
Ef. Jasmin Suljkanovic

 



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