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Photography, Fine Art, Wet Plate Collodion, Alternative photography

About Serbian paramilitary group Garda sv. Lazara and war on Kosovo

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WAR until liberation of Serbian land

Vladko (24) and Radovan (23) are taxidrivers and members of Serbian paramilitary group Garda svetog Lazara. Left T-shirt says WAR until liberation of Serbian land and right one shows an emblem of Red Barret special force unit, who was responsible for assasination of Serbian Prime Minister Zoran Dindic.

Last week I was in Serbia working on a story for Corriere della Serra on a Serbian paramilitary group Garda svetog Lazara. You can see my pictures HERE and read the captions. Let me sum up the experience. I was taking pictures in Kosovo and now I was also in South Serbia.

I could understand both sides. I understand Albanians from Kosovo, especially after what Milosevic did and especially because Serbia is showing no remorse or willingness to get rid of fascism. And I also could understand that Serbian minority is not trusting Albanians their secret churches and monasteries. I’ve been in Gracanica, Peč and other Serbian and those monasteries dating to 13th Century are truly breath taking.

Now more then ever I’m convinced that another war in Kosovo is inevitable. It doesn’t matter how many KFOR forces are around and for how long. The fact is that Serbians are humiliated and many believe that next war will is just a continuation of Battle of Kosovo in 1389. True, Serbia is weak and could not conquer Kosovo at the moment, but who knows what will be in 50 years. Russia is strong and through Kosovo is playing it’s important negotiating role in EU.

Bottom line is that the cause for the war will not be religious views or cultural, but it all brings down to the non communication between people. A lot of unjustice was done to everybody involved and they are calling for justice. They are all very proud and devoted for their cause, but I thing that pride can be very negative emotion. Pride is an emotion that prevents a person to understand the other person. For instance I do understand that Albanians do not want to get in a similar situation as they did under Milosevic regime. And I do understand the Serbian concern for their minorities and their cultural heritage.

On the negotiation between Serbs and Albanians, Albanians would get 99% of their demands. For the remaining one percent another war will be necessary. Sure Kosovo could be independent because Serbia is really weak, but who knows what will happen in 50 years. Not to mention that probably Republica Srbska will want to separate from BiH and join Serbia.
Both parties are so proud to rather die, then to achieve a compromise.

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Written by Borut Peterlin

3 December, 2007 at 01:48

Posted in Photojournalism

One Response

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  1. It’s great that they will get autonomy, but everything is a deal: because of that Bosnia will pay the price because of republic Srbska demanding independance.
    J.J.B.

    J.J.B.

    12 December, 2007 at 02:01


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