Mladic Poster article
This line stood out to me:
The response from the journalistic community was prompt. The
Journalists Association said in a statement that publishing the poster
"unacceptable" and "helped make popular individuals who are tied to
crimes and are being searched for."
My question, and it is probably a loaded one; is why exactly are war criminals percieved as heroes; as brave guys etc?
And I don't think it is a problem which is limited just to the Balkans.
I've been re-reading "My War Gone By, I miss it so." And the author makes some interesting observations on the subject and about his acquaintances with some pretty shady characters who committed horrible crimes.
My own opinion of why war criminals are percieved as heroes is that there are several factors:
1. An inability to believe any allegation of wrong doing on the part of said person; or that if they did any wrong doing, it was strictly a matter of self defense.
2. A genuine belief that the person protected you. I think, that psychologically speaking; it is difficult to admit that the person who you credit with protecting you (whether it is true or not) also committed war crimes.
3. As horrible as the crimes they committed were, most of these guys have qualities that draw people to them.
I thought this article on journalist's Martin Bell's "friendship" with Arkan was a pretty good insight:
My "friend" Arkan
And like I said before, while they committed horrible crimes; most of these guys have charisma, charm, leadership ability and toughness that stands out. Especially perhaps for people who feel very vulnearable.
But, why do you think war criminals and mafiasos and the like are regarded as heroes by some of the population?