Gareth Davies :

Bošnjak, Srbin, Hrvat, “Ostali”

U novinama je objavljena vijest da je novorođena beba, Faruk Šalaka, postao prvi formalno registrovan bosanski građanin. Ovo možda zvuči malo čudno. Zar se ne bi moglo očekivati da svi rođeni u Bosni budu službeno Bosanci? Odgovor je komplikovaniji od ovog. Osoba se može neslužbeno identifikovati kao Bosanac, ali od kraja rata i Dejtonskog mirovnog sporazuma 1995. u očima države niko nije službeno Bosanac. Priznanje prvog bosanskog građanina je od posebne važnosti jer predstavlja moguć pomak od nedjelotvorne forme etnokratske politike koja se vodi od završetka konflikta.

25.02.2015.

Gareth Davies :

Bosniak, Serb, Croat, "Other"

A news report emerged stating that a newborn child, Faruk Salaka, had become the first formally registered Bosnian citizen. This may sound a bit strange. One might expect that all Bosnian born people would be Bosnians by proxy? The answer is more complicated than this. Unofficially one may identify as Bosnian, but in the eyes of the state nobody has been officially Bosnian since the end of the war and the Dayton Peace Agreement of 1995. The recognition of the first Bosnian citizen is of particular import because it represents a potential move away from the unworkable form of ethnocratic politics which has been practiced since the end of the conflict.

25.02.2015.

Kao što znamo, rat u Bosni vidio je ljude iz etničkih grupa kako se bore jedni protiv drugih u jednom od najbrutalnijih ratova u novijoj istoriji. Jedan od najšokantnijih vidova događaja u Bosni bio je nasilje sa zločinima motivisanim etničkom pripadnošću.

Dinamika i identitet politike Balkana su izuzetno kompleksni, pošto su se iskristalisali iz identitetskog vakuuma koji je nastao nakon Tita 1989. Komadanje Jugoslavije uvuklo je region Balkana u period stvaranja ultra-nacionalističkih država u kome su granice Bosne smještene između etnički odvojenih država kao što su Hrvatska na jednoj, a Srbija na drugoj strani.

Popularno predstavljanje Bosne često je slika gradova, kao što je Sarajevo prije rata, kao bastiona liberalizma, multikulturalnosti i integracije. Ako je bilo tako u predratnom periodu, onda su se u ratu te karakteristike obile o glavu. Etnička raznovrsnost u zemlji dovela je do čak intenzivnijih unutrašnjih borbi, jer je to postala sporna teritorija. U nastojanju da se razriješi ono što je pogrešno viđeno kao ‘praiskonska’ etnička podjela u Bosni, Dejtonski mirovni sporazum iz 1995. upisao je u poslijeratni ustav da će politička slika zavisiti od upisa u posebne etničke grupe: Bošnjak, Srbin, Hrvat ili “Ostali”. Takva konkretizacija identiteta bila je smatrana potrebnom da se osigura djelotvorna i jednaka osnova za političku sliku. Kao rezultat ove odluke Bosna i Hercegovina je sada prepoznata kao zemlja sa najkompleksnijim sistemom vlasti u svijetu.

Treba detaljnije izložiti problem kod nastojanja da se kompleksni etnički identiteti uklope u čvrsto definisane kategorije. Ne samo da takvo uređenje pokazuje nerazumijevanje etničke raznolikosti u Bosni, nego se pokazao izuzetno neefikasan kao praktičan metod slike i vlasti. Vladina i nevladina tijela kao što su Krizna grupa, Demokratski politički savjet, pa čak i Evropska komisija prepoznali su hitnu potrebu za političkom reformom.

Takvi pozivi za političku reformu odjekuju u akademskoj literaturi već odavno. Bosanski znanstvenik Asim Mujkić tvrdi da ustavna promjena prema etnički određenoj formi politike ne odražava želje naroda, da slika bazirana na etničkom identitetu obeshrabruje građansku integraciju i da etničko obilježje snaži etničke podjele koje su, prije svega, dovele do konflikta.

As we know, the war in Bosnia saw people of ethnic groups fighting against one another in one of the most brutal conflicts in recent history. One of the most shocking aspects of events in Bosnia was the locality of violence along with crimes motivated by ethnic identities.

The dynamics and identity politics of the Balkans are incredibly complex, having crystallised out of the identitarian vacuum left by the fall of Tito in 1989. The fragmentation of Yugoslavia launched the Balkan region into a period of ultra-nationalist state-building which saw Bosnia’s frontiers placed between the more ethnically discrete states of Croatia on one side, and Serbia on the other.

Popular representations of Bosnia often portray cities like Sarajevo before the war as bastions of liberalism, multi-culturalism, and integration. If this was true of the pre-war period, then the war saw those characteristics turned on their head. The ethnic diversity in the country made the in-fighting even more intense, as it became a contested territory.

As an attempt at resolving what were dubiously perceived as ‘primordial’ ethnic divisions in Bosnia, the Dayton Agreement of 1995 wrote into the post-war constitution that political representation would depend on subscription to particular ethnic groups: Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim), Serb, Croat, or ‘Other’. Such reifications of identity were deemed necessary to ensure a workable and egalitarian basis for political representation. As a result of this decision Bosnia and Herzegovina is now recognised for having one of the world’s most complex systems of government.

The problem with trying to fix complex ethnic identities into rigidly defined categories needs little elaboration. Not only does such ordering demonstrate a misunderstanding of the ethnic diversity of Bosnia, but as a practical method of representation and governance it has proved highly ineffective. Governmental, and non-governmental bodies such as Crisis Group, The Democratic Policy Council, and even the European Commission have acknowledged the urgent need for political reform.

Such calls for political reform have been echoed in the scholarly literature for a considerably longer time. Bosnian scholar Asim Mujkic1 claims that the constitutional change to an ethnically driven form of politics doesn’t reflect the wishes of the people, that representation based on ethnic identity discourages civic integration, and that ethnic essentialism reinforces the ethnic divides which were productive of the conflict in the first place.

Korištenje etničkog obilježja kao oruđa za rješenje etničkog konflikta nije ograničeno samo na slučaj Bosne i Hercegonive, nego se može proširiti na Sjevernu Irsku, gdje se čovjek može samo politički identifikovati kao protestant, katolik ili ostali. Takve politike etničkog separatizma i obilježja su proizvod tehnokratskog poimanja etniciteta i kulture, što vodi do “mira upakovanog iz standardizovanih komponenti”. Takve metode mogu poslužiti da očuvaju mir kratkoročno, ali vrlo malo doprinose gradnji bilo koje forme održivog mira.

Povodom registracije Šalake kao bosanskog građanina, sarajevska opština Centar je izjavila da nema ograničenja koja bilo kog sprječavaju da formalno bude registrovan kao “Bosanac”. Takva odluka suda postavlja pitanje zašto niko ranije nije zatražio da se registruje kao Bosanac, a ako jeste zašto je odbijen? Ta pitanja ostaju bez odgovora, ali je jasno da ova odluka ohrabruje mnoge druge da je slijede. Prema Balkan Insight, već je bilo pet novih zahtjeva roditelja da im se djeca registruju kao Bosanci.

Vijest da je prvi građanin registrovan izvan ograničavajućih etničkih podjela je stoga ogroman događaj, predstavljajući korak dalje od ograničavajućih etničkih obilježja koji jačaju etničke podjele. Možemo se nadati da nedavna odluka označava korak dalje od ograničavajućih oznaka Bošnjak, Srbin, Hrvat, “Ostali” i korak prema sistemu predstavljanja koja može jednog dana potpuno otići iz etničkog obilježavanja.

Endnotes:

1. AsimMujkic. ‘We, the Citizens of

Ethnopolis

’ Constellations. 2007. Vol. 14 no. 1, 112-128

2. Roger MacGinty. ‘Indigenous Peace-Making Versus the Liberal Peace’ Cooperation and Conflict. 2008. Vol. 42 no, 2, 139-163

The use of ethnic essentialism as a tool for resolving ethnic conflict is not only limited to the case study of Bosnia and Herzegovina, but can also be extended to Northern Ireland, where one may only be politically identifiable as Protestant, Catholic, or Other. Such policies of ethnic separatism and essentialism are the product of technocratic understandings of ethnicity and culture, which lead to a “flat-pack peace made from standardized components”2. Such methods may serve to keep peace in the short term, but do little in the way of building any form of sustainable peace.

As part of

Salaka

’s registration as a Bosnian citizen, the Sarajevo Center municipality stated there were no restrictions preventing anyone from being formally registered as ‘Bosnian’. Such a decision by the courts begs the question of why nobody had previously pushed to be registered as Bosnian, and if they had why were they denied? These questions remain unanswered, but it is clear that this decision is encouraging many others to follow suit. According to Balkan Insight there have already been five further requests from parents for their children to be registered as Bosnian.

The news that the first citizen had been registered outside of these constrictive ethnic divisions is therefore a huge event, representing a step away from the constrictive ethnic identifiers that reinforce ethnic divisions. We can hope that the recent decision marks a step away from the constrictive identifiers of Bosniak, Serb, Croat, “Other”, and a step towards a system of representation which may one day depart entirely from ethnic essentialism.

Endnotes:

1. Asim

Mujkic. ‘We, the Citizens of Ethnopolis

’ Constellations. 2007. Vol. 14 no. 1, 112-128

2. Roger MacGinty. ‘Indigenous Peace-Making Versus the Liberal Peace’ Cooperation and Conflict. 2008. Vol. 42 no, 2, 139-163

Gareth Davies je urednik saradnik za Warscapes. Diplomirao je na Univerzitetu York na katedri za engleski jezik i književnost. Sada sprema magistarski na Trinity College u Dablinu na temu Rasa, etnicitet i konflikt. Ima iskustva u pisanju o prikazima konflikta na filmu i književnosti a njegovo istraživanje se fokusira na teoriji genocida i vojnoj tehnologiji. Twitter handle @garethaledavies.

Gareth Davies is Associate Editor for Warscapes. He graduated from the University of York with a BA in English and Related Literature. He is currently studying towards an MPhil in Race, Ethnicity and Conflict at Trinity College Dublin. He has experience in writing about representations of conflict in film and literature, and his research focuses on genocide theory and military technology. Follow him on Twitter at@garethaledavies.

Tekst je prvobitno objavljen na WarScapes web-portalu (25.02.2015).

This article was originally published on the WarScapes web-portal (25.02.2015).

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