The yearly last journey to Srebrenica

Sarajevo. A city of arts, rich in culture, famous for its unique life style, and for best quality food. But what else belongs to Sarajevo? This year as well as last year, we watched the truck with those bodies who have been found in mass graves around Srebrenica, that have been examined and investigated in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia, during the previous year. This has been done for ages now. Year by year. Too many people, too many bodies.

In a forensic facility in Sarajevo, it is investigated who their families are, so they can finally be brought on their last journey, home to Srebrenica, where more then 8.000 men and boys have been brutally massacered during the Bosnian war, more than 20 years ago. Deaths, that would have been easily avoidable, if only some people would have taken their mission seriously.

General Ratko Mladić ordered units of the Bosnian Serb Army of Republika Srpska (VRS) to kill those people cold blooded. This is genocide. Nothing to discuss. Forces with the duty to avoid this kind of crimes, were there. Not moving. In shock? Maybe. What we know is, they did not move. They did not avoid the thousandfold murder.

What I see now, 22 years later? I still see people crying on the street, because this is so huge, you can’t ever take it in. You can’t ever get to terms with it.

Every year some families have the possibility to close one chapter of their personal history book, burying their long lost family members close to their homes. The truck stops all some meters during the slow and respectful drive through Sarajevo, for people to place flowers along the sides of the vehicle, and to say their prayers. This is not normal life. Normal life is not possible with this history. War shatters lives for generations.