Izet Sarailic, Bosnia
For an interview given to the Bulgarian press, Sarajevo, 1996
The big trouble and catastrophes of the Balkans are the result of our striving to go forward, but always looking backward. Not to learn a lesson from the bad, which has come upon us, but from stubbornness lest we should lose the wrong this bad has brought upon us, in order to put it again to work.
There is another thing. Our nations are good and capable, respect each other, even love each other, but what always surfaces in their politics, is the ambition of the elbowing-their-way-through people! And most often it is not the honest, the humane, the experienced and the tolerant who prevail, but the ones, who because of their personal ambition put into use the degradable impulses and cause conflict – nationalistic, conspiring, religious and I don’t know what else. They, on the other hand, blend in perfectly with the murky waters of speculation, mercantilism and crime, and wreak havoc on behalf of and in the name of their people through the hands of their hirelings. It is exactly these people who fill up the Balkan powder keg, install the detonator and light the match. When it explodes, they start blaming their people, who are doomed to endure all the intense sufferings of this outrageous and quarrelsome Balkan politics.
And this, as you can see, is not only now and only in my Bosnia, it is also in Kosovo, in Macedonia…Each one of our nations has been involved at least once in such a bloody mess.
When will the time come, and will it at all, when decent, fascinating, experienced and honest people will lead our Balkans, the kind of people we all have in plenty? It seems they never get to live to see their time!