“An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind”
Most people in our region are not yet ready to make a first step and start to believe that only life in peace, harmony and friendship with neighbors, life without war and sufferings of innocent people is worth of living. People are blind, and that’s why they need someone to open their eyes and bring lights in their minds, so they can starts thinking about forgiving and to start living the future. That’s why we are here. Ambassadors of reconciliation will make them see and on that way, we are going to bring light in this region which is tormented by war, and covered by darkness.
How to do that? That’s the most common question in every great problem of our time. The answer is quite simple, since those countries in the region are not unique in their problems because people from all over the world were facing the same problems as we today, and some of them found the answers how to deal with that. The only thing what we have to do is “to watch”.
One good example of how to settle hostilities between nations is Franco-German model of cooperation. After the Second World War France and Germany were ferocious enemies. Decades of hostilities were behind them, and future was pretty hazy. But, they finally understood that their countries can prosper in the future only if they set their disputes and start forgiving. Final result was “Declaration of Friendship” between France and Germany, which was signed in 1963, and from that time these bond which connect two countries grew stronger. Today, two countries are the most prosper economies in the EU, and also the greatest guaranty for European peace and security. Their example should be followed in our region. Our leaders have to make the first move towards peace, as De Gaul and Adenauer had done four decades ago, and to forgive each other’s for atrocities made in the past. It will be a clear sign for common people, that it is time for all of us to start talking and cooperate, and finally unite under a common goal- European future.
As we can understand the Franco-German problem was settled from the top- De Gaul and Adenauer made the first steep. But, the real question is how could I, as an ordinary citizen of one small Balkan country, contribute to the process of the reconciliation in my country and its neighbors? And also what can young people do to change the past and future, and make life easier for everyone? Can we do anything at all?
In the age of new technology, young people can do a lot, and so can I. Social networks provides, for those who have time to spend many hours in front of the computer many opportunities for influencing public opinion. I am planning to start writing texts about importance of reconciliations, and to publish them on Facebook, Twitter, Blogs and other places useful for internet communication. My goal is to show other people that there is some of us who things differently than the majority of the population, and I hope that other people will after they read my texts, find courage to change their opinion and to start using common sense. Someone has to start the large process of educating people about importance of cooperation between Balkan countries and peace in this region, and to teach them how they also can to educate their friends, relatives, family about that important issue. Even before conference about Youth Reconciliation Ambassadors, I was trying to influence my family and friends about importance of living in peace with neighbors, and I have lots of success. That’s way I am quite sure that I can convince other people about importance of reconciliation.
Besides these ideas, young people which are committed to this education process have one advantage which De Gaul and Adenauer didn’t have in their time- future in European Union. Euro-integrations are also very important for this region because all countries want to become a part of the EU one day, and the conditions are pretty much the same for every country. The only way to make that process faster is cooperation between countries on the Balkans. Only together we can finish that process and deal with corruption, criminal, illegal migrations and heritage from the past. That’s way I am planning to organize a few seminars with my colleges, not only about the importance of the reconciliation process but also of the great importance of the European integrations for the peace in the region. Once all Balkans countries are part of the EU, there will be no borders and also no reasons for fighting for territory because everybody will be able to go, live and work anywhere in the Europe. That’s why we need to make great efforts and to speed up EU integration process and the process of reconciliation in order to finish booth processes successfully.
The last thing I am intending to do is to organize, together with my friends from the conference a campaign for signing Declarations of Friendship among Balkan countries. I think that will not be hard job to do because I think that ordinary people actually want to see something like that. Those Declarations should be the sign of a good will, and the first step toward reconciliation, and they will show that cooperation is possible and that our governments actually can work together and make a deal. The success of these declarations is almost certain because it worked in the case of France and Germany, and why it will not work also here.
As you can see, my contribution to the process of the reconciliation has three main points. First I have to find a way to educate people about the process of reconciliation and how important it is. Then, I have to connect that issue with EU integration process and to persuade people that these two processes can be finished successfully only if we solving them together. And in the end, I have to find the way, together with my colleges to make influence on our governments to sing the Declarations of Friendship and to show ordinary citizens that everyone can cooperate when there is a good will. Solving these three problems will make brighter future for us and our children.
I am quite sure that these can be done only if we working together and respect each other’s and we accomplished these goals than maybe our model of dealing with the reconciliation process can be used by other countries in the world to settle their own disputes. That’s how we can contribute even to the world peace and security.