The Bosnian Spring has begun in Tuzla
Author: Nenad Curak
Uploaded: Tuesday, 11 February, 2014
A rare reponse to last week's country-wide unrest in B-H that highlights three essential aspects: the need for clearly articulated political demands, the key role of dispossessed social layers, and the overwhelming responsibility of the international community through its imposition of the destructive Dayton Agreement.
For the Sarajevo political scientist Nenad Curak it is quite logical that the Bosnian spring should have begun in Tuzla, and that ‘Tuzla is the generator of these social protests, because the Tuzla region is an industrial zone where a cynical destruction of the working class has taken place. Those are people who have no talent for neo-liberalism or for small business. It sound incredible that people there have not received their last 27 or 54 pay packets, just as it is incredible that through privatization firms have been destroyed that were quite respectable in European terms.’
Curak stresses how pleased he is that clear and well-defined demands have been put forward in Tuzla, and in particular he welcomes the demand for the formation of a technical government made up of experts who have never been members of any political party, rather like the one that the citizens of Iceland formed a few years back.
‘In analysing these events, people are ignoring the main reason for the revolt: the ungovernable state that was destroyed by the Dayton Agreement. I am so angry with the international community which transformed an explicitly multi-ethnic state into chaos; For 18 years we have been living in darkness, because Dayton favours nationalist elites. This country, such as it is, exists only because of Republika Srpska, which is the only meaning of the Dayton Agreement.’
Curak considers, therefore, that a new international conference is necessary for Bosnia.
‘The key thing is for the problem of B-H to stop being reduced to the Federation, because the real problem is the existence of Republika Srpska. People are now calling this violence, but they forget that Dayton is the structural violence that has now after 18 years produced this direct violence. And it is not fair to reduce these protests to hooliganism, because they were objectively ‘Hunger Games’.
Nenad Curak is a Sarajevo political scientist. These comments have been translated from the Most (Bridge) programme of Radio Slobodna Europa, 8 February 2014.