My name is Kristian Kahrs, and from January 2000 and seven months, I served as a press officer in KFOR, NATO’s peacekeeping force in Kosovo. When I was working in KFOR, I believed that we, the West and the enlightened democracies were the ones to show Balkan people how to live.

In 2000 I was very naive, and looking back at what I wrote as a press officer is not at all a pleasant experience.  Many things have contributed to a more nuanced picture of the reality, and the first sign that made me start thinking happened on Feb. 16, 2001. At this time I was in Pristina, and I heard about a large bus bomb in Podujevo close to the provincial border of Merdare.

I came there one and a half hour after the explosion of an IED, and to this day, I remember the smell, the body parts and the blood. Twelve people died this day, including two year-old Danilo, and they were protected by KFOR, but we were not able to prevent this terrorist attack.

And in February 2011, I received strong reaction, maybe a post traumatic reaction even if I am not diagnosed with PTSD, 11 years after my time in KFOR had finished. Read more about this in my article Sorry, Serbia.

Српски: ова категорија је за оне који мисле да је превише на енглеском језику на sorryserbia.com. Можда је наслов и уводни параграф је на енглеском, али садржај је на српском. Поделите и коментаришите на друштвеним мрежама као што су фејсбук, твитер и гугл+

Some old pages:


  • Maša Jusufi

    I googled something totally different but stumbled upon this website.
    You brought tears to my eyes. I am from Pristina. I was there until 2004. Just one more little person that will never recover.
    Thank you for this.

    • Хвала и теби, Маша! Идемо само даље, заједно.

  • Illusive Serb

    Norway has a history with Serbia. This wouldn’t be the first time a Norwegian who came in Serbia with a picture of “bad Serbs”, only to realize the truth is just the opposite. I lost faith in the world, I don’t believe that the west will ever admit of the error they made. I don’t think there is a salvation for Serbia. But seeing that there are at least some individuals who are willing to come forward with the truth, gives me… I don’t know what. It gives me even more sadness, because I know this story, like many other, will be dismissed… I’m sorry you had PTSD episodes.

    • Thank you for your comment, Illusive, but I disagree with you that there is no salvation for Serbia. You have a lot going for you, a well educated workforce, and good working moral. The situation is tough at the moment, but when Europe breaks down, you will be in a better position because you are used to living with less money.

      My PDSD episodes do not prevent me but rather motivates me to fight on!

      • Illusive Serb

        Hmmm I see the different reality than the one you described, but I agree that we are used to living with “less” money. If you refer to the fact that people with college degrees work in fields of manual labor because they can’t find jobs in their own fields, then I agree about the education. However our workforce and work ethics are horrible. It has been so for over a couple of centuries. A hundred years ago, Archibald Reis noted that, it was because Serbs worked under Ottomans for centuries and since all their labor was taken advantage of by the occupying overlords, Serbs developed a “knack” for working just enough to survive after the tyrants take their cut. That was a hundred years ago, after the first world war. He said that Serbs are still stuck in a mentality that they are working for someone else, and not their own country. Corrupt politicians (and overall corruption) that bow to the western ideals and orders certainly do contribute to the hopelessness of the situation.
        To me, Kosovo and Metohija is especially painful subject. Because the west is adamant to give (what is not theirs to give) to terrorist mafia. All over western world Serbia is portrayed as the bad guy, and that hurts even more when you’ve seen what Serbs have been through.
        But that’s just me I guess. I have been called a pessimist by the optimists before.

        Well at least some good came out of such ordeal. Not many would see it that way as you do. So it just goes to show that you are a real human, with empathy, and strength to push forward.
        PS: I’m sorry about my lack of faith in the world and life, as well as long needless paragraphs. Sometimes I let myself go on these subjects. I hope your book reaches those who can make the difference.

  • Борис

    Thanks a lot Kristian! Thanks for telling a truth and our side of story. God bless you!