Forget WikiLeaks, We Need A WikiWitness
Arvamus 16 Mar 2011  EWR
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Luke Alnutt, RFE/EL, (Tangled Web)
The murk of war often becomes the murk of history. Take the case of Ejup Ganic, who was arrested in London last year as Serbia sought his extradition for allegedly ordering a series of atrocities in Sarajevo in May 1992, at the beginning of the Bosnian war. The Serbs accuse Ganic, who was then acting president, of ordering an attack on Yugoslav People’s Army soldiers as they withdrew from a barracks in Sarajevo. The accounts of what happened, of course, widely differ -- memories faded by time, attempts at rewriting history, or, more generously, the fog of war clouding perceptions. Some archive footage survives, but not enough to create a clear picture.

What is remarkable about the recent wave of uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa is less the organizing role of social media, but more the power of the video camera (usually housed inside a humble mobile phone). This hasn’t just affected news gathering, but also the process of testimony and the possibilities of posterity.

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