I am sitting in a plenary session of the International Association of Genocide Scholars listening to the President of the country who has come to address us. His presence is indicative of how important it is to the country that this meeting is taking place here.
He began by noting that Serb leaders had made it clear before the killings that they were planning on killing Bosnian Muslims. It is striking that in so many cases of genocide and/or mass killings the perpetrators make their intentions clear, e.g. the Holocaust, Rwanda, and here.
Tomorrow we go to Sebrenica. It is the anniversary of the massacres there and some of the bodies which were left in ditches there have been exhumed and will be reburied.
I saw the film which will be part of the memorial at this site. There were many things about it which struck me. First and foremost, of course, the mass killings. The largest massacre in Europe since the Holocaust.
But, as someone who studies bystanders, I was absolutely floored by the behavior of the Dutch so-called peacekeepers who essentially walked away and left the Bosnian Muslims to a certain fate of death at the hands of the Serbs.
The Dutch alone were not responsible but a great measure of shame seems to fall on their shoulders.