Sunday, March 12, 2006

All Gone...

In connection with the death of Milosevic, I stumbled on this photo showing the opening of the Bosnia peace negotiation in Dayton in the US in late 1995.

It was little more than ten years ago, but now all the three main Balkan leaders of the period are gone.

Croat President Franjo Tudjmam died in December 1999 after a lengthy struggle with cancer. When Milosevic lost power in Serbia in October 2000, the departure of both of them was seen as the beginning of a new era in the region.

Alija Izetbegovic, the leader of the Bosnian Muslims, was a very different man from the two others. Tudjman was the committed nationalist, Milosevic the fanatical opportunist, but Izetbegovic was a decent man of decent and deep religious beliefs who felt somewhat uncomfortable with the realities of power.

He died in Sarajevo in October of 2003.

And now Slobodan Milosevic has died in The Hague.

New generations everywhere are carrying their countries forward.

The picture is really a picture of history.

Although Richard Holbrook, myself and Pauline Neville-Jones seen with our backs to the camera are distinctly still around.