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Serbia’s Pride…. Patriarch Pavle


Patriarch Pavle

Patriarch Pavle

I am not a religious guy. It is one subject that always seems to divide people and has caused numerous wars. My family is made up of many different religions. We have Jehovah’s Witnesses, Baptists, Methodists, Pentecostals, Catholics, Agnostics, and Atheists. I have lived and worked with Jews, Muslims, and every other type of religion you can imagine. The thing I always notice about religious people is how they tend to judge others and claim to have superiority. I am a believer in helping my neighbor, bringing people together, treating people with mutual respect, and not dividing people into little groups. If this will cause me to burn in the fiery depths of hell for eternity, so be it.

St Sava in Belgrade, Serbia

St Sava in Belgrade, Serbia

Serbia is a country that is dominated by the Orthodox faith. It is one of the most interesting things for me. Chicago is the 2nd largest Serbian city on the planet and we have a few Orthodox Churches, but I never paid that much attention to them until coming to Serbia. When I shut my eyes and think of Serbia I get visions of the ancient Orthodox churches that litter every corner of this country. Many of them are over 500 years old!!! They have that unique shape and style that you don’t see everyday. The Orthodox faith is the majority religion in many Eastern European countries including : Bulgaria, Russia, Greece, Belarus, Macedonia, Montenegro,Moldova, Romania and Ukraine.

Those of us from the USA know little about the Orthodox faith. The Catholic and Orthodox churches started their division in the year 1053. It was known as ” The Great Schism”. I am not a religious scholar and will not pretend to be. There are some significant differences between the two religions. You can find some of the differences here    http://www.ocf.org/OrthodoxPage/reading/ortho_cath.html Some of the most obvious differences are :

**the location of the “Holy City”. In the Eastern Orthodox religion it is Constantinople, Turkey and in the Roman Catholic it is Rome.
**the leader of the religion. In the Eastern Orthodox faith it is a Patriarch and in the Catholic faith it is the Pope.

** the way the make the sign of the cross. Roman Catholics tend to go left to right while Eastern Orthodox go right to left.

**the look of the church and the steeples. see pics below…

Catholic steeple

Catholic steeple

Orthodox steeple

Orthodox steeple

His Holiness Patriarch Pavle was born as Gojko Stojcevic in a small village in present day Croatia. He lost both of his parents at a young age and was raised by his aunt. He studied in Belgrade and was majoring in Theology and Medicine. He graduated from University of Belgrade in 1942. He worked as a construction worker after WWII and then took his monastic vows in Ovcar. That is when he received the monastic name Pavle. He later took post-graduate studies in Athens, Greece when he returned in 1957 he was elected as Bishop of Ras and Prizren. He held that position for 33 years before becoming Patriarch in 1990. He held that position until his death on November 15th, 2009.

Riding the bus in Belgrade

Riding the bus in Belgrade

His Holiness is known for his humility. My favorite quote of his was when he was asked why he always walked or took public transport. He replied “I will not purchase one until every Albanian and Serbian household in Kosovo and Metohija has an automobile.”

Here are a few great stories that show how humble of a man he was ……….

serb-patriarch-pavel

******Mercedes Story******

Patriarch Pavle, as he was known, continued to live a simple life even after he moved to the new residence – the Patriarchal Palace – in Belgrade. People form Belgrade often encountered him on the streets, riding the train or the bus … Once, while walking alone the hilly street of King Peter the I, towards the Patriarchate, a Mercedes – last model barely passed him, the driver – a priest from one of the well-known parish in Belgrade, stopped the car and said:
– Your Holiness, permit me to invite  you in! Just tell me where you heading …The Patriarch entered the car, and as  soon as it  started moving, asked:
– Tell me, Father, whose  car is this?
– It’s mine, your Holiness!
– Stop it! – the Patriarch replied, he then got off, made the sign of the Cross and said to the priest:
-May the Lord, watch over you!

*****The Black Automobile Story*****

The great session of the Holy Synod of the Serbian Orthodox Church had just ended. As it was the customary, his Holiness was heading to the vespers service at the Cathedral. When he exited the Patriarchal Palace, he saw many black limousines parked near and asked:
– So many luxury cars, who do you think they belong to?
– To our bishops, Your Holiness! They came with them to the Synod meeting-replied the priest who accompanied him. 

 Oh, God watch over them, what would they’ve traveled with, if they weren’t taken the monastic vows of  poverty?!

******The Travel Story******

In the Patriarchate building, it is often heard the story of the Patriarch dialogue with the deacon accompanying him everywhere; as they were ready to go to the church in Banovo Brdo, the deacon asked:
– So, how are we traveling? By car?
– By bus! – the Patriarch replied with determination.
– It’s crowded, it’s stuffy in the bus, and the church is not close …
– We’re going (by bus)! –
 His Holiness replied shortly.
– But … – the Deacon, following him, advance a new argument, — Your Holiness, it is summer, many people go to Ada Ciganlija [a famous pool] and buses are full of barely naked people. It is not appropriate...
– You know, Father – the Patriarch replied back – one can  see what he desires to see!

******Message to American Envoy*****

When bishop Pavle became Patriarch, (the director of BOS Museum recalls), many delegations and many foreign representatives have expressed their desire to meet him. The active American ambassador at that time in Belgrade, Warren Zimmermann, also came. The Patriarch received him in the Patriarchal Palace. The ambassador conveyed greetings and congratulations on behalf of the American people, himself and the President. At the end of the formal protocol, the ambassador had asked:
– How may we help you?
– Your Excellency, don’t intervene by setting obstacles, that is how you can help.
 (…)

*****Raising Salaries*****

 

Patriarch Pavle refused, in fact, to get paid. He only received a small pension he was entitled to as a formal bishop of Raska and Prizren. All his needs were modest, given that he sewed his mantle and repaired his shoes ... Yet, he still had some money left of that pension. What was left of it, he divided among poor or donated it to other purposes of civic good.

It remained memorable his reaction as a bishop in 1962, when a request from bishops was made to increase their salaries:

– “But why, since we are not able to spend what we already have?”.

He did, likewise with what he received as gifts. If he received mantle material, he keep it until he met a monk or a priest not been able to afford it. Then he would calculate how much they would need to sew a cassock (mantle) and give them exactly that, so he may share the rest with others.
Renowned historian Zika Stojkovich, who has worked with the bishop Pavle during his assignment in Raska and Prizren, when editing his work”Monuments of Kosovo”, complained once to the Patriarch of the difficulty of raising money to continue the print of the work-series he had started and belonging to one of the most prominent Serbian writers, Milos Crnjanski. After been listening to him, the Patriarch rose, went to his bed, raised the pillow, picked his wallet, took out three thousand marks and handed to Stojkovich:
– “Here, it’s my contribution for the printing of Crnjanski Milos’ books. May it be for your assistance. ”

funeral

funeral

Regardless of your religous philosophy, you can see why he was loved by the Serbian people. It is a shame that more religious leaders didn’t learn to lead by his example. May His Holiness Patriarch Pavle rest in peace for eternity!

 If you haven’t done so…. please join us at Say Serbia. It is a website a few friends and I created to show the world the REAL Serbia. http://www.sayserbia.com/

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Posted by on June 12, 2013 in Through my eyes

 

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American Soldier P.O.W Thanks Serbs


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I have never served in the military, but I have respect for anyone that does that thankless job. The troops are taking orders and doing a job that they have taken an oath to do. That is the same with every nation. There are some bad apples in every bunch, but that can be said for any group of people.

We all know what happened in 1999……Serbia was bombed by N.A.T.O for 3 months. They destroyed the majority of bridges in the country, destroyed  powerplants, oil refineries, and killed hundreds people. 😦 I will never understand why we intervened in this dispute! Serbia was defending its own territory!!! They were not invading some innocent neighbor  or trying to create a “Greater Serbia” they were just trying to hang on to their dwindling land mass!!! You all know that I am a big Liberal Democrat, but check out what Republican Ron Paul had to say about our involvement in this conflict  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-Ha1B37v00 I AM NOT GOING TO GO DEEPER IN THIS! I just think we were totally wrong! It seems that we have spit on an old ally. The Serbians were responsible for saving over 500 American troops from the Germans in WWII. Check out what the veterens had to say about Serbians http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y5CXope9ncI and this is how we repay them?

Three American soldiers were captured by Serbian troops on April 1, 1999, a few miles from Skopje, Macedonia. One of the soldiers being a 25-year-old from Michigan named Chris Stone. Chris was married and had a young daughter at home. I am sure the world was thinking ” OH MY GOD!!! SERBIANS ARE GOING TO TORTURE AND MURDER THESE HOSTAGES!” Vice President of Serbia , Vuk Draskovic, stated ” Nothing will happen to them, we respect the enemy. However, they will face Serbian justice.”

What happened to them?  Did the Serbian guards beat, torture and harvest their organs??? Lets find out………………………………………….

Jackson

Mr Stone and the other two hostages were released on May 4th, 1999 after Rev. Jesse Jackson flew to Belgrade to meet with Serbian leadership. Here is a note that Mr Stone sent to the Serbian guards that were responsible for guarding him after he returned to the United States:

pismo1

It looks like the “BARBARIC” Serbians treated their enemy with the utmost respect! It isn’t everyday that you find a P.O.W sending his guards a nice “thank you”. Lets ask John McCain if he sent the Viet Cong a message like this after he sat in a cell and was tortured for years. Why does the media continue to defile the name the of the Serbian people??? Governments have NO FRIENDS…. THEY ONLY HAVE INTERESTS!!! 😦

Serbian leader, Slobodan Milosevic, Rev. Jesse Jackson and former Illinois Gov, Rod Blagojevic in Belgrade

Serbian leader, Slobodan Milosevic, Rev. Jesse Jackson and former Illinois Gov, Rod Blagojevic in Belgrade

Please join our new Serbia website! Learn all about Serbian history, culture, food, music, sports, language, and meet Serbians from all over the world! Find out why I fell in love with this little country in the middle of the The Balkans. http://www.sayserbia.com/

 
9 Comments

Posted by on May 23, 2013 in Through my eyes

 

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American Marine Bumps Into Arkan!!!


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The one thing that never ceases to amaze me is the amount of messages I get from all over the planet. I get to hear so many stories from people with totally different backgrounds! Just today …I received a nice message from a guy in Japan that told me how much he misses Serbia, and will move there after he graduates! Keep the stories coming… 🙂

A few days ago….. I received a message from a Marine that was helping guard the U.S Embassy in Belgrade, Serbia in the 1990’s. He has so many great things to say about his time in Serbia. He grew to love many things about your country, culture, etc. He still has many Serbian friends to this day. He told me this very interesting story about an accidental encounter with Zeljko Raznatovic … better known as “ARKAN”

220px-Željko_Ražnatović

WHO WAS ARKAN?

Mr Raznatovic was a paramilitary leader  of the Serbian Volunteer Guard or Arkan’s Tigers….who organized and lead the forces in the Yugoslav Wars. He was accused of many crimes during the 1970’s-1980’s and was on Interpols most wanted list for many years.  He is considered a hero by many and a brutal monster by many more. He was assassinated in 2000 before he could be tried by the court.

arkan_tigrovi

The Story…..

“I will give the short version of the Arkan Story,  while in Belgrade we were
in charge of security, there was 5 Marines and one Marine Detachment
Commander.  The five of us lived together in a house, kind of like the Real
World, but not on TV, we ran 8 hour shifts, and when you were not at work,
you could do what the Romans do, in this case, do what the Serbs do…..  we had a bar in our house, in fact all Marine houses around the world has a
bar.  We would have parties twice a month to raise money for the Marine
Corps Ball,  we sell wine, liquor and beer, mostly to Americans and other
Expats, but in this Case the Beautiful Serbian People, mostly the girls
because they loved coming to our house, because it was safe, no fire arms
and gun fire going on during the techo mix, LOL.

anyway, one night at Three
Carrots (a Irish Pub), on Knesa Milosa, a very hard looking individual
approached me, and said you are a Marinats, ….. well of course being that
I want to maintain a low security profile, I did not answer his question, he
asked again but this time got in my face but starting talking to me in
Serbian, I politely replied, Izvinite, Moy Serbski nije bash najboje, Da li
Goverite Engleski, he smiled and said, I like an American that tries to
learn our language, and invited me to sit with him.  He bought me and
another Marine a Beer and said he wanted to talk to us about business, of
course I was in condition red, and was surprised by the convo.  This guy
explained that he knew we had parties at our house and sold beer.  He wanted to sell us some beer at a good price, the Beer was Grolsh, not sure if you ever seen it, but it has a pop top, we sat and talked, he told us about
being a Soldier for Serbia, He wanted to sell us some beer, we asked what
kind of beer, and he said what you are drinking now, Grolsh…….. it was
the big bottle too, so I was interested, I said how much, he gave us a price
and without trying to do the conversion in my head, because in those times
the Dinar was all over the place, I said in dollars, he replied even better,
and gave us a ridiculously low number.  I said, per case (24) he said yes,
It was like 5 dollars a case, even if we sold the beer for 2 or 3 bucks in
our bar we make a killing, so I say lets start with 50 cases, he replies why
so small of an order, I was like, well this beer is new or least I have
never heard of it, and I wanted to test it at our bar first, he agreed, so
we set a time the next day to come pick up the beer.

The next day (early
evening) me and another Marine drove our duty van over to the bar and we
expected to load some beer at that location, instead this guy says to jump
in the van and he would take us to were the beer was, now the alarms start
to go off in my head and I hesitate, he assures us that it is all good and
that it would be fine.

We drive for about 30 minutes in an area of Belgrade
that I have never seen before, it seems like we went north East, but we took
so many turns I got all mixed up and got turned around, it was during winter
so it got dark as we were driving.  We finally arrive at a place, these
buildings look residential, but you know BG, there is bars and cafes
everywhere, we get out and walk down some stairs, and there is this big iron door, the Serbian guy knocks on it, it was straight out of a movie, the
slide opens, they speak to each other and the door opens.  We get led down this dark hallway in which it gets darker and darker, I hear music and
people talking, we reach a big velvet type drapery and walk through and bam, we are in a Gentleman’s club, older well dressed men sitting around with young well dressed women at every table with food wine and drinks, and now I crap my pants because I have a scary suspicion on where we are!  I look at “JASON”  and say be cool follow me lead, if I hall ass you better move with me. The guy walks off and talks to some people, we are standing in the room with lots of eyes on us.  Next thing I know a waiter walks up with two shots, he offers them to us, I say no thanks, he says no you have to drink this, I say no that we have to work and that we cannot drink alcohol.  He says no, you really have to drink this because that gentlemen behind me bought you these and it would be a sign of disrespect, and his face was like “seriously just do it”  I look over his shoulder and as plain as day, I see Arkan with a shot glass in the air, I know immediately who he is but act like I dont, the other Marine has no clue as this point, but later acknowledge that he seemed like somebody important.  I decide to pick up the shot glass and tell “JASON”, to do the same.  We knock em back, Rajkia of course……. and as I feel the burn on my throat I nod to him and thank him as does he.  I hear the double doors open on the side wall and out comes two dolly’s loaded with beer.  I nod my head again and I turn and follow the guys with the beer, we load it up, as they bring the other cases, I give the guy the cash, and we shut the doors.  I ask the guy if he wants a ride back to Three Carrots, he says no, that he will stay there.  I drive off with my heart doing 180 beats a minute
and realize the magnitude of it all.  It took me a while to find my way out
of Dark Streets Covered in Coal and soot……… lets just say, that
situation could have turned out very badly, but so glad it didn’t.  It
actually showed me that Serbs are proud and people of their word.

I know I said short version at the beginning, but I could of had a bunch of
other detail, but I think you get the idea!!!

It was weird, when I found out he was killed, I remembered that human side
of him more then the bad things he was accused of.

Alright time to take a breath on that one.  What took you to Serbia????  and
how did you come to love it so much????

Later”

Very interesting…. Thanks for sharing your story with us, sir!

 
8 Comments

Posted by on December 17, 2012 in What others think

 

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Serbs Saved US Secretary of State


You probably know my political leaning after reading many of my blog posts. I am a Democrat that leans heavily to the left. President William J. Clinton was 1st elected president in Nov of 1992. He defeated George H.W Bush in a handy victory. I remember being a freshman in high school and watching the debates and the inauguration  at my grandmother’s home. It was a happy moment for me. It felt good that a member of my political party had been elected to the highest office in the land. I liked the fact that he was a small state governor and enjoyed mocking the “southern twang” in his voice.

 

The 90’s were a great time for me. I had just entered high school, was close to getting my driver’s license, and really enjoying my younger years. We did experience a terrible situation during this decade. My birth home burned to the ground in June of 1992. I was staying up a little later than normal watching the end of Robin Hood. I smelled smoke very strongly and went to my father’s room to wake him. He jumped up and got all of us out of the house. I had to run in a few times to get my baseball cards. 🙂 They drove down to my grandma’s house to call the fire department. They arrived in a timely manner, but the house was already a total loss. We lost all of our clothes, most of our pictures, furniture, and everything that you collect over a lifetime. 😦 My father has always been very talented at building homes. He built our new, larger home on the same spot as the old one. That was the only negative that I can remember about the 1990’s.

It was a totally different situation in Eastern Europe. Yugoslavia had started to break apart. There was war, destruction, OUTRAGEOUS inflation, sanctions, the end of the socialist era, etc… Things were really hard on all the families that I spoke to during my travels around Serbia. I couldn’t imagine living with the everyday problems they had to deal with! They told of working all month and receiving their salary and it would only buy one loaf of bread!!!!! UNREAL!  A few families told me that their income was higher than it had ever been. The sanctions had made it tough to find gasoline. One of my buddies told me about his father sneaking into Bulgaria and Hungary for large amounts of gasoline. They brought it back and sold it for large sums of money. Sad, sad times. 😦

On March, 24 1999, President Clinton and Secretary of State Madeline Albright decided to use military force to stop Serbias attempt to keep the southern portion of their country, Kosovo. The strikes lasted from March 24,
to June 10. It was known as “Operation Merciful Angel” or inside the US State Department ….. as “Albright’s War”! By all accounts, it was Madeleine Albright who convinced Clinton, against the better judgement of the Pentagon, that the Serb leader would back down after a little light bombing.She claimed that he was no more than a schoolyard bully who would retreat after one good punch on the nose”.

 Did the Serbs do something personal to Albright and her family?? YES, THEY DID! They saved them from  certain death in the Nazi concentration camps. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aUDm9quq8XA

Madeline Albright (born Marie Jana Korbelová on May 15, 1937) was the first woman to become United States Secretary of State. She was appointed by President Bill Clinton on December 5, 1996 and was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate 99-0. She was sworn in on January 23, 1997.

Albright was born Marie Jana Korbelová in Prague, Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic) and raised as a Roman Catholic by her parents, Josef Korbel and Anna Spiegelova, who had converted from Judaism in order to escape persecution. She has a brother, John, who later became an economist, and a sister, Katherine. “Madeleine” was the French version of “Madlenka”, a nickname given by her grandmother. Albright adopted the new name when she attended a Swiss boarding school.

The Korbelovas fled Czechoslovakia in 1936 due to the advancing Nazi forces. They found a home with some friendly Serbs in Belgrade, Yugoslavia. From 1936 to 1939 the Korbel Family lived in Belgrade, and were given refuge and protection by Serbs. Many of her Jewish relatives in Czechoslovakia were killed in the Holocaust, including three of her grandparents. They returned to Czechoslovakia in 1939 only to flee the communists in 1948. They moved to Denver, Colorado where her father took a job at the University of Denver.

She was asked what her biggest regret was. She was  criticized for defending the sanctions of Iraq under Saddam Hussein in a 1996 interview with Lesley Stahl on CBS’s 60 Minutes. When asked by Stahl with regards to effect of sanctions against Iraq: “We have heard that half a million children have died. I mean, that’s more children than died in Hiroshima. And, you know, is the price worth it?” Albright replied: “I think this is a very hard choice, but the price — we think the price is worth it.” She expressed regret for this remark in her 2003 autobiography, where she wrote,”I never should have made it, it was stupid,” and that she still supported the concept of tailored sanctions.

It is amazing how one can quickly turn on their friends. I am not going to start an “Albright bashing” campaign here.I am just pointing out some facts that many are unaware of. My country needs to adopt Ron Paul’s approach to foreign policy. Pozdrav……..

 
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Posted by on October 16, 2012 in Through my eyes

 

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USA vs Serbia… Presidential Elections


I have had a few political posts in here. It is a taboo but it is a very important year for both countries. It is the season to re-elect or elect a new president in the USA and Serbia.

The USA is based on a two party system. It is made of two main parties.. the Republicans and Democrats. There are other parties but they are usually not contenders in our presidential elections. A few examples are Libertarian party, Green party, Socialist party, and back in the 90’s, the Reform pary was really making a run with Ross Perot taking on Bill Clinton and George H.W Bush.

The two party system is far from perfect! You are given the choice between two parties that are made up of extremist elements. You have to try to appease large masses of people. Let’s look at me, for example… I am a liberal Democrat that supports social programs, unions, religion out of politics, minority rights, universal healthcare, a woman’s right to chose, etc… I don’t like the anti-death penalty, extreme animal rights activism, extreme anti-gun policies of my party. This forces voters into supporting a candidate and a party that has opposing views and causes major polarization! It’s like the old saying ” i am voting for the worst of two evils!”

The United States is a very divided country. We have extreme right wing nuts, the Tea Party…. and we have extreme lefty nuts, me! hhahaha… If you take a look at the last three presidential elections you can see just how divided we are! They were very close to 50% of the electorate supporting one candidate and 50% supporting the other one. The USA uses the electoral college to select our president. That is a strange method that causes it to trump popular vote. Al Gore won the popular vote for president in 2000 but lost the presidential election because of the electoral college. The electoral college is the system the USA uses to elect its president. It is based on the population figures of each state. With that info, the states are given a number. That figure then allots that amount to the winner of the popular vote of that state. Here is an updated chart showing the total votes for each state…..We are currently the only country to use this outdated system.I feel it is time to eliminate the electoral college and allow the PEOPLE to decide!

It is really sad how campaigning has evolved. They have states labeled as red for solid Republican, blue for solid Democrat, purple for swing state or a state that can “swing” either way. This causes politicians to avoid some states all together and battle for only a few states! It also causes lots of voter apathy. People on the West Coast can see how the elections results are going and they might call the election before the polls close in every state! Its STUPID!!! I think the press should be banned from reporting results until a few days later after ALL votes are counted! This would create more excitement and make you feel like your vote actually counted. I have many friends in Illinois that don’t vote. They say “what makes the difference? they are already saying so and so will win!” ughhhh

This 2012 election has been narrowed down to two candidates. Democrat incumbent Barak Obama vs Republican Mitt Romney. Obama has my vote, hands down! Romney is an out of touch millionaire from Massachusetts. He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth, dodged the military by joining a Mormon mission in France, oh yeah… he is a Mormon! I am not religious and don’t care if he is a Hindu but the Mormons scare me! They believe that the Garden of Eden is in Missouri, that God lives on a planet next to the sun, that Joseph Smith is a prophet, that blacks are dark skinned because God is punishing them… ENOUGH SAID!!! He scares me!!! 🙂 Obama isn’t perfect but look at the pile of shit that was on his plate when he took over this country in 2008!!!! We had the “bailout” that the Bush administration put into place but Obama gets “credit” for! Yes, he did support it but stop blaming him for  dreaming it up! He took over a country that was bleeding jobs , housing market tanking, auto industry one step from bankruptcy, two wars, etc… It was far from heaven! Obama took the reigns and made “some” lemonade with those lemons. He was the first president in decades that was able to see the passage of universal healthcare, ended the war in Iraq, saved the US auto industry from bankruptcy.. now GM is boasting record profits, gave the order to kill Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan, signed equal pay for women act, ended the crazy “dont ask dont tell” policy, ended the Bush policy of “WE DONT TALK TO OUR ENEMIES”, etc… He has disappointed me in a few areas. He has continued to fund and up the troops in Afghanistan, he has not closed Guantanemo Bay prison, etc. I know I will hear a lot of B.S from this but that is my view and my opinions.. We all have opinions and that is what makes the USA a great place! We can disagree in a friendly, respectful way. This is where I feel Serbia has a problem!

Serbia is a country that uses the multi-party system of government. This form of government has many parties that must form coalitions to win and create policy! One single party cannot achieve victory alone! I like this in the sense that it creates unity and keeps the RADICAL elements of any group at bay! It brings most issues to the CENTER where they belong! Back home, Congress and the Senate are voting for most bills along party lines. This form keeps that from happening and allows many things to get through in a timely manner!

Serbia just held its elections last Sunday. Boris Tadic, the current president of Serbia, resigned in March to force a consolidation of all elections in May. They had 13 people on the ballot for president. Tadic came out on top with 26.2% of the vote. The next closest challenger was Tomislav Nikolic of the Serbian Progressive Party with 25% of the vote. The only other candidate to get double digits was Dacic of the Socialist Party. Serbia requires a run off election if the candidates don’t receive a certain %. They will face each other on May 20th! Tadic has been in power since 2004 and has faced Nikolic three separate times.

The biggest difference I have noticed between the USA and Serbia is the ability to discuss politics politely. I am not talking about the entire Serbian population. I have MANY friends that are support their candidate and are open minded but in general there is a lot of STRONG opinions here. My Facebook page page is a good example. I have around 4000 Serbian buddies from around the world! They are very, very diverse in their beliefs. I have many people who side with the Chetniks , many that align themselves with the Partizans, many who think Boris Tadic is a Godsend, many who think he is the worst thing that has ever happened to Serbia, many who think Seselj and the Radicals are patriots, many who think he should be in Hague for life, many who support Vojvodina independence from Serbia, many that think its HORRIBLE, many who despise the thought of Kosovo independence , many who say its time to recognize it…. WHEW!!!!! I have posted a few pictures of Tadic, Tito, etc and the comments went BRUTAL!!! I have had many friends drop me for posting a picture and many friends drop me because they were insulted by the rude comments of other Serbs and told me that I have too many radicals on my page.

The other insane thing about Serbian election season is  the amount of stickers that they post on walls, windows, posts, everywhere they will stick!! They don’t stick up just one! They have a whole wall full!! One day you might walk past a wall in the center of the city and its covered with pro-Tadic stickers. The next day you walk past and its covered over with Radical party stickers. It wouldnt be so bad if they were a two party system but they had 12 candidates on their presidential ballot!!! hahahaha.. You can tell how many of these stickers are around town. I was watching this crew of workers scraping layer upon layer off of a window in downtown Nis. What a waste of time and money!!!! We don’t see this in the USA. There are signs that are stuck in peoples yards, some billboards but most of ours are tv, newspaper, radio etc! If the politicians would spend this money on the citizens or Serbia or programs to better society they could do a lot of good instead of throwing millions into these stickers that will have no effect on voter outcome! SAD! 😦

 
15 Comments

Posted by on May 12, 2012 in USA vs Serbia

 

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