Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Sri Sri Radovan Karadzic

Radovan Karadzic
The infamous fugitive, long charged with war crimes, was not in a distant monastery or a dark cave when caught at last, but living in Serbia's capital. Nor was Radovan Karadzic lurking inconspicuously, but instead giving public lectures on alternative medicine before audiences of hundreds.

He was hiding behind an enormous beard, white ponytailed hair topped with an odd black tuft, and a new life so at odds with his myth as to deflect suspicion.(...) The fatigues-wearing leader of the Bosnian Serbs was unrecognizable in a guise that was part guru and part Santa Claus. As Dragan Dabic, the former psychiatrist worked for years in a clinic in Belgrade, the Serbian capital, practicing alternative medicine. He even lectured on videotape at local community centers, in an open and active life that would appear to be an extraordinary risk for one of the world's most wanted men.

"For an older person, he had very many interests," said Maja Djelic, 28, a Belgrade resident who, like Karadzic, wrote for the magazine Healthy Life. She said they also met for coffee and conversations, about acupuncture and the Internet, at a café called Biblioteka in central Belgrade. Karadzic, she recalled, was very interested in improving his Web site.

"He said, when being introduced, 'My name is Dr. Dabic, but call me David,' " she said, adding that the two met last November. During an interview Tuesday, Djelic referred to him as Dr. David, not Karadzic.

"He was really friendly and really open and had a way of speaking with people," Djelic said. She said that he did not speak with a Bosnian accent, and that he seemed like a valuable member of the small alternative-medicine community here, not someone who could have been the force behind the notorious Srebrenica massacre and the deadly siege of Sarajevo.

"I still don't believe it's the same person," she said, though the editor in chief of the magazine confirmed in interviews with numerous news outlets that Karadzic, under his assumed identity, had written for Healthy Life. IHT
David Seaton's News Links
I have been intensely interested in oriental religions and philosophy since I was about ten years old. I must have been one of the youngest kids in "Greater Chicagoland" to have ever read Lao Tze, Suzuki, Alan Watts or the Upanishads, but I confess that despite, or perhaps because of my lifelong, passionate interest in things spiritual, I've come to be wary of almost anyone who might be classed as "New Age" or a spiritual faddist. You know, one week it's yoga, next week reiki, week after that shiatsu or ayaguasca. Like G.K. Chesterton said, people who don't believe in anything end up believing in everything.

That's why I laughed out loud when I read that Radovan Karadzic had disguised himself as a guru and nobody around him ever caught on... No flies on this mass murderer. A perfect disguise.

There are no surroundings imaginable that are as uncritical or less "judgmental": where intense and skeptical scrutiny is more discouraged, than the ones "Dr Dabic" immersed himself in. No safer place for a cynic to hide.

Taking a cue from the article above, I sought out Karadzic's web page (BTW, how many mass murderers do you know that have their own web page?)

Now, my opinion of
Radovan Karadzic, up till now, has been simply what I had read in the papers and online when he was doing his mass killing: impersonal reprobation, and a special dislike of his old haircut.

However, just a moment ago on visiting his web page, I came across this collection of "Dr Dabic's Favorite Chinese Proverbs", in English, and they really gave me the creeps. Here is the lot:
10 favorite ancient Chinese proverbs as selected personally by Dr. Dabic:
  • Behind every able man, there are always other able men.
  • Teacher opens the door, but you must enter by yourself.
  • A wise man makes his own decisions, an ignorant man follows the public opinion.
  • He who cannot agree with his enemies is controlled by them.
  • If your strength is small, don't carry heavy burdens. If your words are worthless, don't give advice.
  • A flawed diamond is better than a common stone that is perfect.
  • Learning is a treasure that will follow its owner everywhere.
  • If you are planning for a year, sow rice; if you are planning for a decade, plant trees; if you are planning for a lifetime, teach people.
  • You cannot prevent the birds of sorrow from flying over your head, but you can prevent them from building nests in your hair.
  • The one who gives up his own, should dig two graves.
That last one makes you believe in the devil, doesn't it?

Even the devil can quote scripture.

And what murderous, self-regarding, inhuman vanity hides behind, "A flawed diamond is better than a common stone that is perfect?"

Every proverb in the list is filled with sinister nudges and winks.

How he must of cackled to himself when lecturing to his rapt audiences.

If I ever thought that Karadzic was simply part of Hanna Arendt's "banality of evil"; just another gray, Eichmann-like brick in the wall of the 20th century's mass produced savagery, it disappeared when confronted with Dr Dabic's insolent narcisism.

They say that Karadzic has asked his jailers for a shave and a haircut.

When the barber has finished, that will be the end of the Dr Dabic incarnation. Requiscat in Pace. DS

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Still you're overdoing it. The traditionally Nazi/USA-affiliated people (ustasha etc) on the other side of the Yugoslav civil wars are no lesser murderers but they will never be punished because they won.