Unafraid Of War

Many people asked me to leave, but I refused. I was not afraid. Why should I be afraid of war? Once I left [my home] because I had to. I won't be forced to leave a second time if I can help it.

Before the war, we had many friends. We never thought about who was a Serb and who was a Muslim. Serbs and Croats and Muslims all had friends and neighbors in all groups. There were many mixed marriages. [So] it was impossible to imagine this happening. But the Serbs who were doing this, after what they suffered from the Nazis, it was an absolute copy of fascist methods, an attempt at genocide. Except it was much more primitive. They were killing their neighbors, often with their own hands. And in Sarajevo, they were killing children. Eleven thousand people died in Sarajevo, and 2,000 were children, and that was intentional.

Life was hard. There was no water and no heat and no food. But we were human beings. If I was cold, I could put on another coat, and I had friends to visit. In the [German] camps we had nothing. From my flat you could see the Serb positions on the hills around us. We were hit by snipers many times, and by shells. [But] I was an optimist. I knew that if I wasn't wounded, I would survive the war.