INTERLINGUA HAS BEEN OPEN DURING THE WHOLE WAR// 06. 1994. • DZEVAHIRA ARSLANAGIC// DIRECTOR OF THE FOREIGN LANGUAGE CENTER
ORAL HISTORY - INTERVIEW
ORAL HISTORY - TRANSCRIPT
Director of the Foreign Language Center
INTERLINGUA HAS BEEN OPEN DURING THE WHOLE WAR
‘Then at ten in the evening they brought you a translation - work until dawn. You make a candle, some oil floating on water or something, and work until dawn and hand it in at 6 in the morning. Working hours was literally non-stop. We even didn’t make a problem of what to write on, one could always find something. I remembered there were some small pieces left over from school, smaller than a cigarette, some kind of sticky stuff that didn’t leave traces wherever you stuck it, and I used it to make a blackboard. We’d find all kinds of old paper in offices, we stuck it on the wall, the door, and those were blackboards, it worked wonderfully, then you could always find some kind of pencil, and old felt tip pens. We could even get color to highlight parts to remember them better. That was the technical part, blackboard, chalk was always available. I was lucky, because I’d always kept my books and took them home when the war started. When we could work more normally then I gave out the books, one book to two students, then used them for the next lot. So we had textbooks, we didn’t have to use just anything. I was very happy to have some quite new English teaching books. I’m an English teacher that’s the language I know. We got some of the newest ’93 and ’94 editions from England. I was very happy to know that I was using the most up to date material.’
• Kresimir Zubak becomes president of the Federation of BH. The session of the Constituent Assembly of BiH is completed.
• Amendment to the indictment against criminals in the city changes the charge from "opposition to authority" to "military rebellion". Military prosecutor Ismet Mehic says this is intended to calm tensions in the city.
• A fashion show, "Back to No Future," is held.
• The BiH delegation will not go to Geneva for peace negotiations because the Bosnian Serbs have not retreated 3 km from Gorazde.
• The Writers' Union of Russia gives the "Mihail Solohov" prize to Radovan Karadzic for his poetic works.
• Bob Dole, the Republican leader in the U.S., arrives in Sarajevo.
• Peace negotiations in Geneva: cease-fire signed.
• Sarajevans get water during the night, due to reduced power consumption.
• A BiH mountaineering expedition headed by Muhamed Gafic climbs Mont Blanc on June 8th, at 3pm.
• U.S. Congress opposition to Clinton: Congress urges the President to unilaterally lift the arms embargo on Bosnia.
• Larry Hollingworth, a British aid worker, is knighted. He has worked completely alone, without protection, walking in front of the first trucks in convoys with humanitarian aid.
• Inside the building of the burnt out National Library Mozart's "Requiem" is performed. Conducted by Zubin Mehta, Carreras sings to pay tribute to the fallen people of Sarajevo and those killed across the country.
• Sniper incidents occurr- a passenger is injured in a tram near the hotel "Holiday Inn". A UN APC, which is supposed to protect the tram, did not react retreated. A second UN APC arrives to shelter the tram.
• Sculptor Alma Suljevic builds "Centaurs" from the burnt out shells of trams.
• Haris Silajdzic is appointed President of the Federation BiH; his deputy is Jadranko Prlic, who represents Croats.
• Sarajevans attend foreign language courses. The "Interlingua" school operates throughout the siege.
• NATO is ready to send 50,000 troops to implement the agreement if an agreement is reached in Geneva.
• The Humanitarian Organization "Marie Stopes International" opens to counsel for "post-traumatic stress disorder." Based on their votes, most women choose aerobics as their treatment.
Not working since April, 1992. In the beginning, so called staircase-schools emerged where everyone gathered during the shelling. Now the education continues in the apartments, with children from different grades. Both high schools and grammar schools became homes for refugees. Classrooms and labs became dormitories and kitchens. There is laundry hanging on every school’s window. Colleges work, exams are given, but only where danger isn’t too great. Yet, many have managed to graduate. There is a lot of time to study. Computers and all the technology from the schools and from the colleges of the University has been stolen.