Seeing ICMP, where they identify the bodies was pretty amazing. Its unbelievable they have been able to identify as many people as they have and become as good as it as they are. However, I wish they better able to identify the body parts of smaller bones likes hands and feet Overall though it is pretty sad that they have to be doing this in the first place, that pieces of people are mixed up, parts of a skeleton in one place and other parts of it in another. They have already taken these peoples lives, even after they could not let them rest in peace, it’s disgusting. Not only that but there are so many bodies unable to be collected because their whole families had been wiped out, hundreds of families wiped, unable to claim their body and give them the burial and the respect the deserve. Not only is the location what they do at ICMP, but the people who work there is inspiring. Someone was told the employees have not been paid in six months, but still they come in everyday ready to work to give many of these families closure they need. They are able to handle these bodies and are able to do it with such grace day in and day out, without be overwhelmed by the mass amount of bodies they are dealing with. Specifically when we enter the room storing the bones, there is an overwhelming smell of death they have accepted as part of their jobs. Having to go in everyday and face that smell alone is overwhelming, let alone examining every individual body.
Hearing about the genocide in class is kind of intangible, but being able to see the grave of 6,000 people is overwhelming. It really makes one see how much chaos and how many lives were lost and families affected by the actions of what happened at Serebinca. Being able to watch the same documentary as we did class was much more effective in the place where everything. I really believe that the power of place is significant here. Seeing all graves, and where things could have possibly been changed at the Dutch Base, but weren’t. It has a strong impact on my understanding and being able to directly relate what lessons we can take from this massacre. The second film forces you to question humanity especially see them murder in cold blood, taunting the people as they did it, even though I couldn’t understand what they are saying, you understand the tone of what they saying to them. Its horrific, why kick people when they are already down, even past down on their lowest low? It is inhumane.
Meeting with Saliha was inspiring in her strength. Even though she has lost everything and has been completed devastated by the impact of the genocide, she still has her faith and continues living every day, even returning to her home, when many others cannot after the atrocity that happened there. It is true bravery to continue living her life, although she mourns those she lost, she is strong and is doing everything she can to continue living. When she was speaking to us, she kept emphasizing, that what she was saying was the truth. I found pretty sad that even after 20 years, and after testifying a few times, and telling her story numerous times, she still feels that she has to emphasize that it is the truth, why would she lie about it. It is a good question, why would she lie about losing the one thing she loved most in the world? Her family. But its pretty devastating she believes that she still has to defend what she is saying even to a group of students who came across the globe just to hear her story.