The ground gives up its secrets.
May 17, 2014 2:22 PM   Subscribe

The closest his memories usually come to the surface is when he insists those memories no longer hold any power over him. "All of this stuff," he says, "helped me realize that you have to be happy in life. I had my childhood. It was fun. I would never change my childhood." Twenty years after fleeing with his family from the Bosnian War, Vedad Ibasevic has led his national team to an appearance in the World Cup. But nothing can stay buried.

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Other children of the Bosnian War wrestle with its legacy: "I still couldn’t believe my beloved coach, the original Pero, had come to our door with an AK-47 shouting, 'You have one hour to leave or be killed!' Pero was a common Yugoslavian name, like Peter, but I only knew two. In my 12-year-old mind, they became 'Bad Pero' and 'Good Pero.'" Kenan Trebinčević finds the neighbor who saved his family.

Zlata Filipović, author of Zlata's Diary, lives in Dublin and fears for Bosnia's future.
posted by Snarl Furillo (3 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Very well done--a brutal reminder and statement of hope. Thanks for taking the time to post.
posted by rmhsinc at 3:08 PM on May 17, 2014

A great article.

Hilarious though to get this great big banner before you can read the story warning you there's some bad language in the article, all for a single "fuckup" near the end. So very American.
posted by MartinWisse at 4:32 PM on May 17, 2014 [1 favorite]

Hearing the news of this conflict was such a part of my daily existence at the time. On the one hand I was growing up in the US completely isolated from the actual war, and at the same time it felt like it was inescapable. It's heartbreaking see reminders that the divisiveness is still there, and how fragile the current situation is.
posted by cali at 4:54 PM on May 17, 2014 [2 favorites]

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