"I Wish You to See Your Own House on CNN!": 15 Jokes from the Siege of Sarajevo

Comments

1
I think you mean "Leningrad."
2
well. that shut me up.
3
Yeesh. I did mean Leningrad. Thanks, and fixing.
4
Thanks for posting this.
5
Saved the best one for last.
6
I lol'd.
7
So funny and dark. Thank you.
8
Great. Many thanks.
9
Wow. The unique jokes of that time and place illustrate the stark realities of the situation more clearly and succinctly than any number of grave historical accounts.
10
Bleak! Thanks for posting this.
12
I actually hadn't heard about this siege, never mind that it was the longest in modern times. I'd heard of the Bosnian War, Christians vs. Muslims, Clinton sitting on his hands for a long time, Krist Novoselic's activism, etc., but it was all vague. This post has led me to do some quick internet reading. Thanks.

And the jokes are funny, dark and funny. I don't know if I can pick a favorite. (Auschwitz, the finger in the nose, the cigarette...) I'll be remembering some of those
13
Say what you will about the Iraq and Afghan wars, but the US is going to have one hell of a Paralypmic team this year.
14
This is incredible.
15
The following is my best recollection of a joke I first heard when I arrived in Sarajevo in 1994 as a wire service correspondent: US President Bill Clinton, Russian President Boris Yeltsin and Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic are clandestinely meeting in Geneva as the two world powers try to convince Izetbegovic to accept the latest international peace plan. Suddently God appears--urging all three to further compromise while promising he would answer one prayer from each leader.

"The US is beset by many problems," begins Clinton. "We have high unemployment, we're plagued by many foreign crises and our country has become politically polarized. Please tell me, God, when will these problems be solved?' God looks down upong on Clinton and announces all will be well within six years. Clinton to begins to hysterically sob, "but I won't be President in six years."

Now Yeltsin petitions God: "Dear Lord, I am dealing with rampant gangsterism in the economy and a continuing break-up of what's left of the Russian Federation. Please tell me, God, when will these problems be solved?" God looks down upon Yeltsin and says it will be a decade until all is well in Russia. tears stream down Yeltsin's cheeks as he mutters he'll by then be dead from liver failure.

Now It's Izetbegovic's turn: "We are the victim's of the most vile genocide since World War II. Tens of thousands of our people have been made homeless, thousands more are in death camps. ethic cleansing continues in my country's hinterlands and an equal numbers of innocents have been slaughtered. Sarajevo has become the world's largest shooting gallery. The UN-designated "Safe Havens" exist only as huge concentration camps. Please tell me when Bosnia's problems will be solved."

Now God begins to cry...
16
The following is my best recollection of a joke I first heard when I arrived in Sarajevo in 1994 as a wire service correspondent: US President Bill Clinton, Russian President Boris Yeltsin and Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic are clandestinely meeting in Geneva as the two world powers try to convince Izetbegovic to accept the latest international peace plan. Suddently God appears--urging all three to further compromise while promising he would answer one prayer from each leader.

"The US is beset by many problems," begins Clinton. "We have high unemployment, we're plagued by many foreign crises and our country has become politically polarized. Please tell me, God, when will these problems be solved?' God looks down upong on Clinton and announces all will be well within six years. Clinton to begins to hysterically sob, "but I won't be President in six years."

Now Yeltsin petitions God: "Dear Lord, I am dealing with rampant gangsterism in the economy and a continuing break-up of what's left of the Russian Federation. Please tell me, God, when will these problems be solved?" God looks down upon Yeltsin and says it will be a decade until all is well in Russia. tears stream down Yeltsin's cheeks as he mutters he'll by then be dead from liver failure.

Now It's Izetbegovic's turn: "We are the victim's of the most vile genocide since World War II. Tens of thousands of our people have been made homeless, thousands more are in death camps. ethic cleansing continues in my country's hinterlands and an equal numbers of innocents have been slaughtered. Sarajevo has become the world's largest shooting gallery. The UN-designated "Safe Havens" exist only as huge concentration camps. Please tell me when Bosnia's problems will be solved."

Now God begins to cry...
17
I have a joke:

In the time of Yugoslavia, two friends, Milan (a Serb) and Mujo (a Bosniak/Muslim) were sitting and having coffee in a village outside of Sarajevo.

Milan asks Mujo, "why does your wife always walk 5 steps behind you?". Mujo replies that that's mandated by the Koran, it's a way of the wife showing respect and deference to the husband.

Milan shrugs it off and they continue socializing for the rest of the day.

War happens and Milan has to leave Sarajevo.

When the war is over, Milan returns and tries to find his old friend. He find him and, to his surprise, his wife is walking 5 steps in front of him.

the two old friends are happy to see each other and Milan asks him, "how come your wife is walking 5 steps in front of you? I thought you told me that the Koran says she must walk behind you 5 steps"

Mojo answers, "landmines"
18
Thank you for posting this article! Our Bosnian-American community in Seattle consists of many war and genocide survivors and we appreciate your commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the Siege of Sarajevo
19
Kada je Clinton dosao u Sarajevo, sreo je poznatu Fatu mahalusu. Clinton je htio da se upozna i razgovara sa Fatom. Evo kako je izgledao njihov razgovor.
Clinton: "Hello. Bill"
Fata: "Ma kako nebi!"
;-)
20
Some of the Bosnian jokes is very hard to translate so the Clinton joke is on its original Bosnian language.
Pozdrav svim Bosancima i Hercegovcima sirom svijeta.
21
The humor kept us going! Thanks for posting this. :)