of a Manager
come to bury Caesar, not to praise him." - (Shakespeare,
Julius Caesar, Act III, Scene II)
shots one in the chest, one in the stomach abruptly
ended the reign of Zoran
Djindjic at lunchtime Wednesday, as a yet unidentified
sniper assassinated the Prime Minister of Serbia. Djindjic
was killed at the pinnacle of his career, just after he finished
securing his grip on power in Serbia without ever standing
of Wednesday afternoon, there were no confirmed reports on
the identity or motives of the assassins, though speculation
has, of course, been plentiful. The attack was universally
condemned as "terrorist," which it was.
culprits could have been the organized
crime syndicates produced and nurtured by the Balkan
wars, a decade of harsh statism and the US-imposed blockade
with which Djindjic had numerous ties. Somewhat less likely,
but still possible, it could have been the Albanian terrorists,
trying to stop Djindjic from interfering with their plans
for Kosovo independence. There has even been speculation of
possible revenge by Milosevic supporters, though they could
have murdered Djindjic at any time over the past decade, had
they been so inclined. Indeed, the spokesman for Milosevic's
party harshly condemned the assassination.
Given the blatant incompetence
of Serbian police officials which, ironically, Djindjic
appointed his murder may never be solved unless the assassins
Obviously, Djindjic's Machiavellian
ways have made him a lot of enemies, though until Wednesday
they were hardly considered both willing and able to actually
kill him. Because modern Serbia is a dangerous place, Djindjic
was always surrounded by bodyguards and drove around in armored
cars. But he could not be protected from just this kind of
attack: from a distance, while stepping out of a car,
and in front of his office building. The method suggests that
whoever shot him knew not only his vulnerabilities, but also
his schedule. In the habitually relaxed Balkans, Djindjic's
westernized organization and time-management skills may have
been his undoing.
man is judged not only by his enemies, but by his friends.
According to reports cited by the pro-government B92
media network, the entire EU leadership, Kosovo's Viceroy
Michael Steiner, and even Adem Demaqi, a Kosovo Albanian separatist
leader, expressed shock and sorrow at the news of Djindjic's
death. Croatia's president Mesic called the murder an "act
"This is not good for
Serbia, not good for us in the neighborhood. Serbia has been
through a difficult period... and this assassination will
slow down its progress toward democracy," he
CNN's Christiane Amanpour,
who gained notoriety for her anti-Serb diatribes and 'advocacy
journalism' during the Bosnian and Kosovo wars, deeply
regretted Djindjic's demise as well: "This is a very,
very severe blow to all those in the international community
trying to engage with Serbia," she was quoted by CNN.
She called Djindjic a "courageous man" and an "emblem
the often Serbophobic Guardian praised Djindjic for
his opposition to Milosevic, it also noted
he "often took harshly nationalistic stances," and
was known for "authoritarian tendencies." "The
Associated Press, on the other hand, commended Djindjic for
"his willingness to surrender Milosevic despite a constitutional
ban on extraditing Serbian citizens," and called him
a "the man who personified
Serbia's hopes for a better future."
Head Inquisitor of the Hague 'Tribunal' Carla DelPonte mourned
Djindjic's death by saying, "He worked very hard to help
BBC carried a statement
by Dame Pauline Neville-Jones, former
advisor to the first Viceroy of Bosnia: "Here was a man
who more than any other single figure stood for the reform
it now throws all the cards in the air."
What all these statements
have in common is Djindjic's importance to "democracy
in Serbia." Apparently, Djindjic was not just another
Prime Minister, but the irreplaceable champion of Western
values (at least of the modern political variety). No one
mentioned his honesty, honor, or integrity. Perhaps they wished
to avoid mocking the dead?
Neville-Jones raised a valid point, as cards in Serbia are
very much "in the air" right now. Djindjic's politics
were very much driven by his personal talents. His party,
and his governing coalition, will find him impossible to replace.
For over two years, Djindjic ran Serbia almost single-handedly,
with a host of others hanging on as decorations. Now it's
up to the decorations to rule.
According to reports that trickled in from Serbia during the
day Wednesday, the emergency government session was chaired
by Deputy PM Nebojsa Covic, the government's special envoy
for Kosovo and Presevo valley issues, who has recently drifted
away from Djindjic. Covic addressed the reporters after the
session, possibly indicating his rise to Prime Minister. But
the coalition of two-bit parties Djindjic has assembled as
a rubber-stamp majority is extremely fragile, and Covic may
not have the temper nor the cunning to keep them in line.
Serbia is certainly headed into a period of political confusion,
as various factions jockey for power.
the meantime, the President (Djindjic appointee Natasa Micic)
has declared a state of emergency and a three-day period of
column has never
held much respect for Zoran Djindjic. The man was a Marxist
philosopher who wrote a Ph.D. on utilizing crisis situations
to seize power. He was a technocratic statist of the worst
stripe, a man who put "manager" his nickname,
no less in "managerial state." Under his rule,
Serbia went from a damaged but surviving post-war, post-sanctions
economy into a sharp tailspin. His ministers have engineered
tax and privatization policies that have pilfered the people
of what little wealth they still had, while pushing Serbia
into a mountain of debt. And, almost as a side note, they've
managed to rip
up the Constitution, cheat the democratic process (however
flawed and bogus it was to begin with), and dismantle the
country they've taken over.
Indeed, Zoran Djindjic was
the champion of the worst kind of social engineering, trying
to remake Serbia into an obedient
Imperial vassal mired in cultural Marxism and political
correctness, all in the name of 'democracy' and 'human rights'
which he cared not a whit about. There is no reason to renounce
any of these judgments now. Serbia is better off without him.
said, his murder was brutal, foul and worthy only of condemnation.
It is a deeply uncivilized act, for a deeply uncivilized society
which Serbia has become over the past decade. Yes, it was
a society Djindjic helped shape during his time in power,
and there is certainly an irony that he died at the hands
of someone even more unscrupulous. But no one deserves to
Djindjic can do more good
in death then he did in life; if his assassin is caught and
given a fair trial, it will mark Serbia's return to civilization.
Serbia's new leaders, whoever they end up being, should bear
in mind the last lines of Shakespeare's Richard III:
their bodies as becomes their births.
Proclaim a pardon to the soldiers fled
That in submission will return to us;
And then, as we have ta'en the sacrament,
We will unite the white rose and the red.
Smile heaven upon this fair conjunction,
That long have frowned upon their enmity!
What traitor hears me, and says not amen?
England hath long been mad and scarred herself;
The brother blindly shed the brother's blood;
The father rashly slaughtered his own son;
The son, compelled, been butcher to the sire:
All this divided York and Lancaster,
Divided in their dire division,
O, now let Richmond and Elizabeth,
The true succeeders of each royal house,
By God's fair ordinance conjoin together!
And let their heirs (God, if thy will be so)
Enrich the time to come with smooth-faced peace,
With smiling plenty, and fair prosperous days!
Abate the edge of traitors, gracious Lord,
That would reduce these bloody days again
And make poor England weep in streams of blood!
Let them not live to taste this land's increase
That would with treason wound this fair land's peace!
Now civil wounds are stopped, peace lives again:
That she may long live here, God say Amen!
Please Support Antiwar.com
520 S. Murphy Ave., Suite #202
Sunnyvale, CA 94086
Contribute Via our Secure Server
Credit Card Donation Form
contributions are now tax-deductible