|You are in: Programmes: Correspondent|
Tuesday, 14 May, 2002, 13:35 GMT 14:35 UK
Maggie O'Kane and Anthony Borden answer your questions
Maggie O'Kane, the Guardian's celebrated war correspondent, and Anthony Borden, Executive Director of the Institute of War & Peace Reporting, answered your questions in a live interactive forum on Sunday 19 May.
I must protest at an omission in the otherwise excellent Correspondent on Sunday evening. You mentioned Karadzic's role in the Srebrenica massacre in 1995. As you know this was designated a UN 'Safe-haven' in 1993, but throughout the ensuing two years the Muslim forces under the command of Nasir Oric based WITHIN Srebrenica stole out of the enclave and murdered hundreds, if not thousands of Serbs in villages around Bratunac. Oric has not been indicted for war crimes thus far. Surely this fact confirms Serb suspicions that the indictments are disproportionately targeting 'our' perceived enemies, the Serbs?
I thought this was a well-made documentary. I also cannot believe the Serbs are living in denial and holding up Karadzic as a Hero or some sort of saint, its sickening
Muhamed Hadziabdic, Bosnia
I am glad to see that the crimes against the Bosnians have not been forgotten by the world's media. There has been talk of nothing but terrorism in the world's politics since September last year. Maybe European leaders should concentrate more on the Balkans to find those behind the atrocities in Bosnia. Coming from Trebinje, the documentary made me aware of the animosity and hatred the Bosnian Serbs have - they must be brainwashed by all those 'inspiring' songs, most probably written by Karadzic himself (he is a self-proclaimed poet amongst other things
The gratuitous suggestions that the U.S. is not interested in justice in Bosnia is demonstrably untrue. The U.S. has spent hundreds of millions of dollars deploying troops, bankrolling ICTY, and otherwise putting spine into the Europeans to try to bring peace to EUROPE. Your closing comment that "Americans had to die" before the U.S. would make an effort to hunt down war criminals in Bosnia is as offensive as it is inaccurate.
Christian Bradshaw, Wales
Would it be too much to expect the BBC to screen a less biased piece of reporting? How dare the Serbs not see things through Maggie O'Kane's distorted eyes. I expect it would be too much to expect the BBC to examine in critical detail the actions of external forces in breaking up Yugoslavia? How many times BEFORE the bloodshed erupted in Bosnia did the US encourage the Muslim side NOT to accept any peace deal?
Does Maggie feel it's fair to implicitly complicate the Serbian Orthodox Church in harbouring Karadzic. I would hope that the church would protect any individual if they seek refuge. That is the job of the church. Where it is the job of SFOR forces to apprehend Karadzic.
Please, would you make one thing clear for those who still wonder about Bosnian Muslim War Crime indictments: the reason that most of the indictments involve Serbs is because they were the ones who committed those hideous crimes. The number of killed and missing Bosnian Muslims says it all.
My only question is, why is it America's fault that the hunt did not start until "Americans had to die". What about other countries such as UK. Ireland, Germany...etc - UN.??? I just did not think it was so fair to put all the blame on us Americans.
Why is it from Bosnia to current conflicts all round the world the Muslims are the ones being crushed and no Muslim country can help them - even though there are 56 Muslim nations all over the globe? Why do they need to come with a begging bowl to the western powers doorsteps for help?
With the support Karadzic has from the Serb people, how can he be suitably punished without turning him into an even greater martyr and turning his crimes into glorious events for the Serb people.
Its no mystery why some Serbs protect Karadzic, after all, why did the 'nationalist community' of Northern Ireland not unilaterally hand over all the IRA men they knew full well were engaged in (similarly inexcusable) bombings and kneecappings? Exactly the same reasoning. Incidentally, I look forward to Maggie's next investigation of why, two years later, not a single indictment or arrest has been made by an even larger NATO force in Kosovo for the widespread murders and expulsions of minority Serbs following the Kosovo war. Somehow I think I'll be waiting a long long time.
I am proud to have served with the UN in 1995, with IFOR (NATO) in 1996, with the European Community Monitoring Mission from 97 to 98, and with the European Commission Customs and Fiscal Assistance Office from 98 to 99. Originally interested in the programme, I was disappointed to see the trite, one-sided and naive view put across by the BBC in this programme. I felt somewhat shamed by the unprofessional and blatantly 'tabloid' style employed by the BBC reporter. Whilst I do not disagree that war criminals and indictments exist from the conflict, I am disappointedly unsurprised at the fact that the underdogs still have had no action taken against them, despite their own part in war crimes and their part in acts leading up to recent atrocities.
There have already been a lot of TV and radio programmes about Karadzic and Mladic, and Maggie O'Kane has always seemed to be completely biased against the Serbs. Prove me wrong and televise a well-documented programme about the many war crimes, which were committed AGAINST Serbs by Muslims and Croats.
David Roper, England
Why is the media in the West so biased against the Serbian people and why is it so pro Muslim? Why are graphic images of suffering Muslim women and children rammed down our throats while very little is said about how the Serbian people have suffered? Many Serbs were ethnically cleansed from areas in Croatia and they fled to a refugee camp in Serbia. Why are the NATO chiefs not indicted for war crimes?
I am Serbian, and I think that the church is involved in protecting Karadzic. It is incredibly foolish to think that Karadzic is untouchable especially after Milosevic was extradited to Hague. I find it unsettling about the fact that you were not treated nice while in Bosnia, and at the same time am angry at the behaviour of Serb Orthodox Church. I follow closely all events from my homeland and am bitter about the split of former Yugoslavia, especially when remembering how great a country it was before 1992-93.So much from me just now. Well done on your excellent programme about Karadzic.
Don't you think you were a little pushy interrupting a bishop performing a religious ceremony? A hidden camera when you expressly asked not to film?
I'm no fan of Karadzic and hope he is brought to justice soon. Your film seems to have crossed some ethical boundaries without justification.
In your experience Maggie, do the Bosnian Serbs acknowledge in any way the crimes committed by their leaders and soldiers during the Bosnian War?
Found the programme awe-inspiring. Who looked after your safety during your time in Bosnia-Herzegovina (former state)/ (Republica Serbska)? Your last trip seemed highly dangerous. Do you think the new government actually know where he is?
Gerry Murray, UK
Why can't the US use their extensive satellite systems to locate Karadizc?
You ended your story with an odd comment. SFOR has repeatedly attempted to find him long before 9/11. In fact, when in Bosnia, he appears to have hid in territory held by European, not US troops. You know we aren't responsible for every failure of the international community. Wasn't it a French officer that was court martialed for tipping Karadzic to an attempt my SFOR to capture him?
Once again Maggie O'Kane's bile for all things Serbian is demonstrated. No objectivity here or for that matter during her original reporting during the conflict.
Alan Knight, Scotland
I was shocked i have to admit by the reactions in Trebinje. These attitudes about Karadzic as a leader are not giving any chance to strong Bosnia. Do you see the country surviving in the long term?
James McCleary, UK
What I cannot fathom is the complete security of the Serbian Republic that Karadzic is blameless. Has any evidence that he was heavily involved been presented to the people, or has this not been possible?
E-mail your comments on the programme by using the form below
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites
Top Correspondent stories now:
Links to more Correspondent stories are at the foot of the page.
|E-mail this story to a friend|
Links to more Correspondent stories
To BBC Sport>> | To BBC Weather>> | To BBC World Service>>
© MMIII | News Sources | Privacy