Slobodan Markovic on Sun, 7 Nov 1999 14:25:17 +0100

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Syndicate: That Chechenya thing...

    Last night I've been enjoying in a dinner with my girlfriend when
    a neighbor came in a short visit. He just dropped by to arrange
    some meeting with my father later this week. From the dining room
    I could hear a part of their conversation:

    Father: OK, but why can't you stay a bit longer? On a coffee?
    Neighbor: I have to run home. I want to see those terrorists on TV?
    Father: What terrorists?
    Neighbor: You did not hear?!? During the recent fightings in
              Chechenya, Russian military forces captured some video
              tapes made by Chechenyan terrorists. They were taking
              pictures of massacre and torture of the people they
              kidnapped... Can you imagine?

    My gosh, I thought for a second, not again... Every time when a
    certain power structure needs support for their actions, they
    come up with some (handy) set of shocking pictures. After such
    films it's hard to stay cool and unbiased.

    In all Balkan crises during the 90es all sides in conflict were
    playing similar films on their TV stations. Even if the charming
    anchors always warned parents to put children away from the TV
    sets (because of the disturbing pictures), the real (government's)

    I'm not arguing if those films were true or false, but their real
    purpose was, without any doubt, to spread and enlarge hate for
    the other side in the conflict.

    So I decided to prolong the dinner and not watch that bloody movie.

    But, from the dinning room I could still hear the sound coming from
    the TV set. I was lucky because I don't understand Russian language,
    but unfortunately my girlfriend does. I asked her what was happening
    and she said - It's something like: "No, don't beat me... Please...
    NOOOOO, don't cut my finger away... NOOOOO!"

    Then I felt my dinner was over and we immediately went outside for
    a while to pick up some fresh air. Even the strong and cold wind
    that was blowing outside was better that watching "a massacre by
    Chechenyan terrorists".

    That Chechenya thing was pretty far from me. I did not know much
    about the conflict's background, so I finally realized how the
    average Americans and the other NATO countries' citizens felt
    during the Kosovo war, after seeing similar "educative" movies
    provided by their governments...

    The present situation in Chechenya is hard, so it's on Kosovo and
    some 1000 more places on Earth. BUT PLEASE - don't let the hate of
    any kind overtake your heart and mind!

    That is really the single most important thing in life!
    Everything else depends on that!

              Slobodan Markovic (mailto:twiddle@eunet.yu)
               politics: http://solair.eunet.yu/~twiddle

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