Last week, as the president of the Founding Board of the Movement for Normal Bosnia-Hercegovina, he sent to high representative Paddy Ashdown a petition with sixty signatures of students at the Philosophy Department under the title We demand that Pogorelica case be immediately stopped. Soon, two signatories of the petition, students Elma Medaric and Ivana Draco publicly asserted that they have been duped and told that they were signing a petition "regarding insufficient education of people appointed to various posts". Soon the petition was transformed into the tale about organization of demonstrations with 40,000 participants, blockade of the headquarters of the Federation TV, purges of journalists, ban of the FTV show 60 minutes and dismissal of its editor Bakir Hadziomerovic. This week, in the poll conducted by IFM Student Radio, most signatories of the petition confirmed that they did not realize what they were signing, that no one mentioned "Pogorelica case", "dismissals of journalists at the FTV", attacks on 60 minutes...
SLOBODNA BOSNA: Although the Founding Board of the Movement for Normal BH announced that demonstrations would take place early this week, that did not happen. How come?
BAHTIJAR: Someone started spreading rumors that demonstrations would take place this Monday, and three buses came from Bihac. We had to send them back. On January 26, at the meeting of the Founding Board, we decided to at first continue collecting signatures for our petition. We made that decision after being contacted by a disabled war veteran from a village near Bihac, who said that instead of offering the petition only to students we should have all Bosnian patriots sign it.
What is his name? Where did he call from?
I don't know, he called over the phone...
In that case, how do you know that he is a disabled war veteran from a village near Bihac?
I don't think that matters at this point. The Founding Board made the decision to continue collecting signatures for the petition and to expand the action to all parts of Bosnia, even the smallest hamlets, where Bosnian patriots live. That will take three days and then we shall approach the Federation BH Prosecutor's office, Federation BH Supreme Court and the Public TV Service. Only if our demands are rejected, we shall call for mass demonstrations and Sarajevo will host all Bosnian patriots. We can bring together at least 40,000 demonstrators. Therefore, we do not know exactly when the demonstrations will take place, because we are waiting to see whether our demands will be fulfilled.
Who are the members of the Founding Board? Are all of them students of philosophy?
There are thirty members. They come from all parts of Bosnia-Hercegovina. One of them is even from Banja Luka...
Could you reveal a few names?
No, I can not, because the student from Banja Luka, as well as other members of the board have already started receiving threats.
Who is threatening them?
We don't know, but there are threats.
Why do you want to approach the Prosecutor's Office?
We shall approach the Prosecutor's Office because one of our demands has to do with the initiation of an investigation against Ustashe criminal Jadranko Prlic, first prime minister of the fascist para-state HR Herceg-Bosna, and against all those who assisted the aggression against Bosnia-Hercegovina.
In your petition, you say that the program of the FTV should be changed and that TV show 60 minutes should be pulled because Serbian and Croatian is spoken instead of Bosnian language. You've just said that you'll approach "tuziteljstvo" [Prosecutor's Office], which is a Croatian version of the word "tuzilastvo"...
Did I really say "tuziteljstvo"?
Fine, but Bosnian language is not spoken...
You've named your movement the Movement For Normal BH. What is "normal BH"?
That is the state that has a public TV service that will not be used to treat frustrations of either Zlatko Lagumdzija or Sulejman Tihic. That is the state that will not be led by either Croatian, Serbian, Bosniak or Iranian lobby. Marija Topic-Crnoja the top cadre of great Smiljko Sagolj [Croatian writer and journalist; famous for his anti-Muslim reporting during Croat-Muslim war in Bosnia-Hercegovina], cannot be the editor of the news program on the FTV. The FTV has been thoroughly croatized , because both Croats and Bosniaks on the FTV speak Croatian...
It is interesting that your views resemble so much views of professors Dzevad Jahic and Munib Maglajic, who denounced the use of Croat and Serb languages in Bosnian media as "the continuation of the linguistic aggression on BH"?
Both of them are my professors! If Dzevad Jahic, the greatest linguist in Bosnia-Hercegovina claims something, I have no comment. I absolutely agree with Dr. Jahic. The croatization of Bosnian language is out of question and all journalists on the FTV must speak Bosnian. Your editor Senad Avdic insults Fahrudin Rizvanbegovic, and he is smarter than any policeman! I think that all insufficiently qualified employees should be fired from the FTV. That action would benefit all Sarajevo restaurants as it would free up numerous cooks, waiters and those like them.
You mention Vice Vukov in your petition?
He is a judge of the constitutional Court of Croatia, accused by Bosniak women of rape, therefore a grave violation of human rights. In the petition we demand that an investigation against him be initiated.
This is a wrong answer, Vice Vukov is a singer from Croatia. Have you heard of Vico Vukojevic?
Please, it does not matter, what matters is that he is a judge of the Constitutional Court of Croatia.
He's not even that. Therefore, who are you approaching with your demands? To which youths and students are you speaking about the "Pogorelica case"?
We are addressing all Bosnian patriots who, when they wake up in the morning, know that one Jadranko Prlic is still at large, and that patriots who defended this country rot in jails. The Camp Pogorelica trial is a staged trial, as all other trials of Bosniak patriots who defended this country. The Pogorelica camp trial is a matter of survival of this country.
How come you know that the Pogorelica camp trial has been staged? Why are you so concerned about the Pogorelica trial, rather than for example Jozo Leutar murder trial? How come you did not protest then and demand the truth?
Zlatko Lagumdzija and the Croat lobby in Bosnia are trying to portray Bosniaks as terrorists. Bakir Alispahic and other defendants are innocent, because everything has been staged! Out of seventy witnesses, no one said anything incriminating! I don't know much about Leutar case, I did not follow it...
I know for sure that Leutar was not murdered by Bosniaks.
Then, you must know who killed him. Why don't you tell us?
I am confident that Bosniaks did not kill Leutar, because they had no reason.
Does that mean that Muamer Topalovic had a reason when he murdered three members of the [Croat] Andjelic family in Kostajnica? Is hatred a valid motive for a crime?
That was between them and Croats, Leutar bothered the Croat lobby in Bosnia-Hercegovina. The same people who threatened members of our Founding Board (that they would "end up like Leutar") killed him. And one article published in Slobodna Bosna also prompted us to start our petition. In that article you proclaimed Mijo Brajkovic, director of Aluminum Mostar company for a manager of the year, even though he fired four thousands Bosniaks.
That is nonsense and a lie. Slobodna Bosna has never proclaimed Brajkovic for a manager of a year, nor did it ever endorse his behavior towards the fired Aluminum employees. Therefore, you either did not read our magazine or are deliberately lying?
Both the show 60 minutes and Slobodna Bosna are connected with Zlatko Lagumdzija and Munir Alibabic. You want to destroy all healthy Bosnian companies and sell the Bosnian market to companies from Croatia. That's what you did with Alpsko Milk, and people who sponsor your magazine promote the motto "let's drink local, Croatian drinks are the best."
Obviously, you got mixed up. First, Alpsko milk is not produced in Croatia, but in Slovenia, and secondly, Slobodna Bosna criticized minister Azra Hadziahmetovic for her failure to pull Slovenian milk off the Bosnian market. Finally, do you have any concrete evidence that Slobodna Bosna is under influence of the "Croatian lobby" and, besides, who is in that lobby?
Slobodna Bosna is the only Croatian weekly published in Bosnia-Hercegovina! Could there be a better indication of that than your publication of a picture of Mijo Brajkovic, who committed a crime against five thousands of Bosniak workers, and your decision to proclaim him for a manager of the year...?
Again, that is simply not true. Slobodna Bosna has never proclaimed Brajkovic for a manager of the year; that was done by the Association of Managers. But, let's go back to your demands. Therefore, you demand that the show 60 minutes be pulled and a purge at the Federation TV because journalists are uneducated...
No, no, look here! FTV director Jasmin Durakovic has said that police and intelligence services are behind the show 60 minutes...
When and where did he say that?
He said that, for sure...
When and where?
...Jasmin Durakovic said! And everyone can see who is behind 60 minutes. If an independent and unbiased analysis proves that Munir Alibabic and Zlatko Lagumdzija are not behind the show, than it can stay!
If someone wants to have a public service, then 60 minutes should run a segment on Hasan Cengic, then about Amina Lagumdzija [wife of Zlatko Lagumdzija], and then about Mijo Brajkovic. We shall not compromise! Bakir Hadziomerovic is lying when he says that he covers daily events! Dnevni Avaz wrote three months ago about the crime of Amina Lagumdzija, and 60 minutes hasn't done anything about that!
Well, now Alibabic and Lagumdzija are not in power...
Ms Vesna Pusic keeps repeating that Croatia needs a "de-Tudmanization" process. Similarly, Bosnia-Hercegovina needs a "de-Lagumdzijization" process.
If your demands are, as you say, not political, how come they are almost identical to the demands made over the last three years by the SDA through its public releases?
Amel Bahtijar and the Movement for Normal Bosnia-Hercegovina did not bring the new authorities to power. Zlatko Lagumdzija, who said that the Army of Bosnia-Hercegovina soldiers are Chetniks and dared to touch the holy grail of all Bosniaks, the liberation war, did...
When and where did Lagumdzija said that Army BH soldiers were Chetniks?
He said that for sure.
Did you take part in the liberation war?
I did in eastern Mostar, and I listened on the radio to Jadranko Prlic and Marija Topic.
In which unit did you fight?
I could not fight. I was twelve at the time...
Did some of your relatives die in the war?
None of my close relatives, but some distant relatives did die.
Could you give me a list of priorities that will lead to "normal Bosnia-Hercegovina" according to your movement?
First, we must reject the past. I am referring to the aggression. Secondly, we need the process of "de-Lagumdzijization". Finally, we need an economic strategy.
Therefore, your movement believes that as far as Bosnian patriots are concerned, the showdown with the past is much more important than unemployment, mass emigration to the West, inability of refugees to return to their pre-war homes...
If these two priorities are not met, most Bosnian patriots will soon be dead. You ask why the economic program is in the third place? Please, who will invest in the country infested by terrorists? Lagumdzija said that all Bosniaks are terrorists! That all Bosnian patriots are terrorists!
When and where did Lagumdzija say that?
Zlatko Laumdzija has created a series of show trials. For example, there is Pogorelica, there is the "Algiers group", all of them are show trials and their purpose is to show that the state leadership supports terrorism and that Bosniaks are terrorists! If that passes, who will invest in Bosnia?!
Therefore, Lagumdzija must be jailed and all defendants in "show trials" of which the Movement for Normal BH is aware should be released?
Lagumdzija must be condemned. He is a thief... He has committed the worst crime in the country with his wife Amina...
Do you have any evidence for your claims?
Dnevni Avaz wrote about that. Avaz clearly proved everything. Nijaz Durakovic said in Avaz that Lagumdzija would be jailed in three months! Knowing that Dr. Durakovic is one of our leading political scientists, I am confident that he is telling the truth.
Have you read any of Durakovic's scientific works?
I've read his articles in the press, in Walter...
Do you think that your demands should be achieved through violence, if other methods fail?
No, of course not. We are students. Please, write for Marija Topic's sake, because she has surrounded herself by police, that we are not the Croatian Defense Council from 1993, because we do not attack. Our movement is the same patriotic movement that defended the country in 1993; they attacked us and we defended and said no way!
Those attacks and defense involved weapons. Why are you talking about that?
In case they again attack us with weapons. I am talking about Croats who would attack us using weapons. They would end up the same way they did in 1993, when they were defeated in their attempt to convert us into a Croatian colony!
Patriots from Bosnia-Hercegovina will never forget the historic dinner at which Paddy Ashdown set next to Croatian president Franjo Tudman. That dinner destroyed Tudman's standing in the international community. If it weren't for that dinner, Bosnia-Hercegovina would have most likely been divided. And his testimony against Slobodan Milosevic is another example of what a friend of Bosnia-Hercegovina he is.