Tuesday, August 27, 2013


Just for the sake of getting a post in before the end of August...

As noted before, between graduate school and family matters, I just have not been giving this blog the attention that I used to. I realize that the sun continues to rise in the east, and that nobody turns to "Americans for Bosnia"* for breaking news on Bosnia or expert analysis, but all the same I do know that a handful of people who do care about the issue would turn here from time to time and for that reason alone I feel obligated to keep this blog going. I would hate to feed into any notion that the world has "moved on."

But over the past couple of days, I've had an exchange on the subject of Syria with an acquaintence, and in the course of the discussion I brought up the parallels with the situation in Bosnia in the 1990s. It was immediately clear that his understanding of what happened in the former Yugoslavia is fundamentally different from mine. Specifically; like many well-meaning progressives, he has accepted the narrative that the war was about "ancient hatreds" and that there were no clear distinctions to be made between the different actors.

And so I was I reminded that the battle over the history of the Bosnian conflict is not yet won. There is still work to be done, and for those of us with any investment in the argument over the meaning of the Bosnian war, we really cannot pretend that it's OK to stop talking, writing, reading, and advocating for a rational and fact-based history of the conflict. Allowing the revisionists, apologists, "anti-imperialists", nationalists, and tribalists to have the last word would be a moral abdication. So I apologize for my relative inactivity, and in spite of my busy personal life and current doctoral studies, I will do my best to reengage with the literature and the dialogue around it.

*Truth be told, I wish I could rename the blog. When I first started, I really didn't have an idea exactly what I'd be doing, but I vaguely intended some sort of advocacy and outreach. Now that the blog has morphed into "book reviews from the perspective of a reasonably informed layman", I realize that the name is not only ridiculously overreaching, but also inaccurate. But hey, legacy and all that.