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  1. #1
    Bassim is offline Senior Member
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    Default Friends, part five

    This is the fifth part of my short story, Friends. Please would you correct my mistakes.

    After the Communist Party ceased to exist, the political vacuum was filled by the nationalistic parties. The Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks, instead of the Communism and Tito’s legacy could now vote for their respective parties. Their leaders appeared on TV and in front of large crowds, which were ecstatic, waving their nationalistic flags. They liked what they heard and they did not ask themselves if these speeches were propaganda, manipulations or truth. Milan and Omer went to all three rallies, just of curiosity. What they heard and saw made them deeply disturbed. The three leaders were not talking about the economy and investments but about a nation as if it was the most important thing in the world. The Serbian leader told his supporters that Bosnia would always remain part of Yugoslavia, the Bosniak leader told his followers that the future of Bosnia is only one – the independence, and the Croat leader told his people that the Croats would create their own entity, which would protect the interests of the Croatian people. How all these ideas and plans were going to be implemented in the future, and how all three nations were going to live together in peace, nobody could answer. Sane citizens had hoped that nationalism would disappear when people understood that it would create only conflicts and bloodshed, but unfortunately, sanity had become so rare. The masses had become hypnotised. They followed their leaders slavishly and swallowed their messages as the messianic calls. They had put their fate in the hands of the three men, who were neither highly intelligent nor wise, and knew nothing about the economy, industry and production. Nevertheless, when the first democratic elections took place, the three nationalist parties won the majority.

    Omer did not bother to vote, because he did not want to have a bad conscience. How to vote for someone who was pushing the country towards the abyss? But Milan decided to vote for the Serbian Democratic Party, under the leadership of a certain Dr Karadzic. Milan could not have imagined living in a country that would be independent and thus separated from Serbia. He had some family members living there and some good friends, whom he visited now and then. The thought that one day he would need a passport to travel there filled him with uneasiness. He and Omer discussed this issue many times and they could not agree. Omer did not like Mr Milosevic and could not have imagined living under his presidency, which was gradually turning into a dictatorship. Neither Mr Karadzic with his thick bushy hair inspired confidence. His talk about the sacred Serbian soil and the Serbian rebellion against the Ottoman Empire hundreds of years ago, were just a nationalistic rhetoric, which would add fuel to the fire. Soon you could sense that the country was becoming more polarized with each day. As he worked in the operating room and performed dozens of arthroscopies every week, Omer wished to have an instrument to change the destiny of his homeland. His patients came to him limping and hobbling, but after about half an hour, he and his little instrument did wonders and made them walk normally again. Now Bosnia was hobbling towards a quagmire, and nobody seemed to be able to change its destiny.

    After months of bickering and quarrelling in the parliament, the Bosniak and the Croat parties had decided to have a referendum about the Bosnian independence from Yugoslavia. The Serbs had decided to boycott it. Milan did what Mr Karadzic told his nation and stayed at home, but Omer and his wife voted for independence, as hundreds of thousands Bosniaks and Croats did. That same day, Milan, angry and disappointed, went to his local Serbian Democratic Party and became its member. He could not simply stay passive and watch how his lovely Yugoslavia was disappearing from the map, and millions of Serbs were becoming a minority in the new independent states. To the Bosnian independence, the Serbs responded with the creation of his own state, which they called The Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina. They ignored Bosnian institutions and established their own. People were waiting with bated breath what was going to happen. Milan went to the party meetings and there he could hear the high-ranking party members talking about the ethnic cleansing. The Bosniaks and Croats were going to be forcibly moved to the territory under the control of the Bosniak government. Only a few percent of them would be allowed to stay in the Serbian Republic. The war was inevitable and the Serbs had to prepare themselves if they did not want to face a complete annihilation. The following days Milan would meet Omer in hospital, asking himself what was going to happen to his friend. Was he going to help him to stay in the town together with a few percent of those who were seen as loyal to the new government? But how Omer could have been loyal when he voted for the independence and liked neither Mr Milosevic nor Mr Karadzic.
    TO BE CONTINUED

  2. #2
    Gillnetter is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Friends, part five

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    This is the fifth part of my short story, Friends. Please would you correct my mistakes.

    After the Communist Party ceased to exist, the political vacuum was filled by the nationalistic parties. The Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks, instead of the Communism and Tito’s legacy (legacy doesn't work here, How about "followers?) could now vote for their respective parties. Their leaders appeared on TV and in front of large crowds, which were ecstatic, waving their nationalistic flags. They liked what they heard and they did not ask themselves if these speeches were propaganda, manipulations or truth (Either the truth or true). Milan and Omer went to all three rallies, just out of curiosity. What they heard and saw made them deeply disturbed. The three leaders were not talking about the economy and investments but about a nation as if it was the most important thing in the world. The Serbian leader told his supporters that Bosnia would always remain part of Yugoslavia, the Bosniak leader told his followers that the future of Bosnia is could be only one – the independence, and the Croat leader told his people that the Croats would create their own entity, which would protect the interests of the Croatian people. How all these ideas and plans were going to be implemented in the future, and how all three nations were going to live together in peace, nobody could answer. Sane citizens had hoped that nationalism would disappear when people understood that it would create only conflicts and bloodshed, but unfortunately, sanity had become so rare. The masses had become hypnotised. They followed their leaders slavishly and swallowed their messages as the messianic calls. They had put their fate in the hands of the three men, who were neither highly intelligent, nor wise, and knew nothing about the economy, industry and production. Nevertheless, when the first democratic elections took place, the three nationalist parties won the majority (How can three parties win a majority?).

    Omer did not bother to vote, because he did not want to have a bad conscience. How to could he vote for someone who was pushing the country towards the abyss? But Milan decided to vote for the Serbian Democratic Party, under the leadership of a certain Dr Karadzic. Milan could not have imagined living in a country that would be independent and thus separated from Serbia. He had some family members living there and some good friends, whom he visited now and then. The thought that one day he would need a passport to travel there filled him with uneasiness. He and Omer (It might be better to phrase this - Omer and Milan) discussed this issue many times and they could not agree. Omer did not like Mr Milosevic and could not have imagined living under his presidency, which was gradually turning into a dictatorship. Neither Even Mr Karadzic, with his thick bushy hair, did not inspire much inspired confidence. His talk about the sacred Serbian soil and the Serbian rebellion against the Ottoman Empire hundreds of years ago, were was just a nationalistic rhetoric, which would add fuel to the fire. Soon you could sense that the country was becoming more polarized with each day ("with each passing day", or, "more polarized each day", or "more polarized every day"). As he worked in the operating room and performed dozens of arthroscopies every week, Omer wished to have an instrument to change the destiny of his homeland. His patients came to him limping and hobbling, but after about half an hour, he and his little instrument did wonders and made them walk normally again. Now Bosnia was hobbling towards a quagmire, and nobody seemed to be able to change its destiny.

    After months of bickering and quarrelling in the parliament, the Bosniak and the Croat parties had decided to have a referendum about the Bosnian independence from Yugoslavia. The Serbs had decided to boycott it. Milan did what Mr Karadzic told his nation and stayed at home, but Omer and his wife voted for independence, as hundreds of thousands Bosniaks and Croats did. That same day, Milan, angry and disappointed, went to his local Serbian Democratic Party and became its a member. He could not simply stay passive and watch how as his lovely Yugoslavia was disappearing from the map, and millions of Serbs were becoming a minority in the new independent states. To the Bosnian independence, the Serbs responded with the creation of his their own state, which they called The Serbian Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina. They ignored Bosnian institutions and established their own. People were waiting with bated breath to see what was going to happen. Milan went to the party meetings and there he could hear the high-ranking party members talking about the ethnic cleansing (This could be "the ethnic cleansing" if you are talking about a specific cleansing, or "ethic cleansing" if you are talking about cleanings in general). The Bosniaks and Croats were going to be forcibly moved to the territory under the control of the Bosniak government. Only a few percent of them would be allowed to stay in the Serbian Republic. War was inevitable and the Serbs had to prepare themselves if they did not want to face a complete annihilation. The following days Milan would meet Omer in hospital, asking himself what was going to happen to his friend. Was he going to help him to stay in the town together with a few percent of those who were seen as loyal to the new government? But how could Omer could have been loyal when he voted for the independence and liked neither Mr Milosevic nor Mr Karadzic?
    TO BE CONTINUED
    This conflict was more complex than I thought.

  3. #3
    Bassim is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Friends, part five

    Dear Gil,

    Thank you again for your corrections.

    I am wondering if I could use the word "ideas" instead of "legacy" in the second sentence and write: The Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks, instead of Communism and Tito's ideas, could now vote for their respective parties.

    Regarding these three nationalistic parties which won the election, I can say that they were presented as a coalition from the very beginning. There were dozens of other political parties, which did not care about a nation, and instead wanted to create more prosperity for everyone, but people were not interested in their messages. The absurd is that by voting for the nationalistic parties people had chosen war and destruction. Everyone was so excited to vote for their respective parties and show the other side who had the real power in the country. It was like a mass psychosis. You could not even discuss with people about economy and how young people were going to find jobs. They did not want to listen. Instead, they were listening to people who spread hatred as soon as they started talking. Many of those who had been members of the Communist Party simply jumped on the bandwagon and became members of a nationalistic party, which would give them the opportunity to keep their job and prosper in a new society. So, the former Communists became nationalists in the blink of an eye. Before, they did not believe in God and never visited churches,or mosques, but now they became great believers and started praying to God more than ordinary believers. They behaved like turncoats and did not even blush if someone asked them how come that they changed their political ideas. It was a tragicomedy in which people without any education suddenly became mayors of towns and cities and had an absolute power over life and death.
    Last edited by Bassim; 10-Dec-2013 at 19:59.

  4. #4
    Gillnetter is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Friends, part five

    Quote Originally Posted by Bassim View Post
    Dear Gil,

    Thank you again for your corrections.

    I am wondering if I could use the word "ideas" instead of "legacy" in the second sentence and write: The Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks, instead of Communism and Tito's ideas, could now vote for their respective parties.
    What's bothering me is that the clause should be at the end, not in the middle. The Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks could now vote for their respective parties instead of Communism and Tito's ideas.


    Regarding these three nationalistic parties which won the election, I can say that they were presented as a coalition from the very beginning (yes, I see, but something has to be added to bring out this fact - As a coalition they won the majority vote). There were dozens of other political parties, which did not care about a nation, and instead wanted to create more prosperity for everyone, but people were not interested in their messages. The absurd is that by voting for the nationalistic parties people had chosen war and destruction. Everyone was so excited to vote for their respective parties and show the other side who had the real power in the country. It was like a mass psychosis. You could not even discuss with people about economy and how young people were going to find jobs. They did not want to listen. Instead, they were listening to people who spread hatred as soon as they started talking. Many of those who had been members of the Communist Party simply jumped on the bandwagon and became members of a nationalistic party, which would give them the opportunity to keep their job and prosper in a new society. So, the former Communists became nationalists in the blink of an eye. Before, they did not believe in God and never visited churches,or mosques, but now they became great believers and started praying to God more than ordinary believers. They behaved like turncoats and did not even blush if someone asked them how come that they changed their political ideas. It was a tragicomedy in which people without any education suddenly became mayors of towns and cities and had an absolute power over life and death.
    This seems to be the way of mankind. In the American Civil War of the 1860s most of the rebel soldiers (the Confederates) were not much better off than the slaves in the south. Yet, they fought and died to preserve a way of life that only the few rich enjoyed. Even today, their descendants proudly wave the Confederate flag and speak longingly about a time and culture that their forefathers probably never were a part of as they were mostly sharecroppers (A sharecropper farms the land of someone else and gets a share of any profits from the crops) and common workers.

  5. #5
    Bassim is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Friends, part five

    Dear Gil,

    Thank you again for your corrections and explanations.

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