Ivana Marić: We Will Survive the War, But We Will Not Survive Our Health Care System

The war in BiH ended 25 years ago, at least in terms of killing people. Since then, politicians have continued to kill people figuratively, threatening a war in which citizens would again go to the trenches, and they would go to their vaults and lucrative businesses.

The ruling structures have recently started speculations about the war, not because they think that the war could really come, but to cover up numerous scandals in which they, members of their closest family, close friends and loyal business partners are involved.

This especially refers to health scandals in which the families of deceased patients have reason to suspect that their loved ones were killed by a catastrophic health system that procures and connects patients to inappropriate respirators or gives them industrial oxygen instead of medical.

Many believed in spins about the war so all public focus from health scandals and beyond was shifted to anticipation of war. As soon as the war cries subsided a little with the help of the American administration, a tragic death of a two-year-old girl suspected of being the victim of a catastrophic health care system brought us back to the cruel reality. And back to the heart of the matter. They don’t have to start a war to kill us because they do a great job with the dysfunctional health care system they have established so that they can get the most out of it, but not to treat citizens but to extract money from it.

Where Did the War Go?

The stories of the war suddenly fell silent!? It was the fastest ‘blitzkrieg’ the world can remember.

Where is the heroic heart of the tribal chiefs, who shouted out loud that they would stand in the forefront of defending their homeland and lead an army of equally brave, online warriors, armed with keyboards and tough words, with years of experience fighting on virtual video game battlefields?

Isn’t it true that politicians came to their senses and finally realized that the war ended 25 years ago and that they should offer citizens concrete solutions to real problems? I hope that the citizens understood that the only threat to all nations comes from national leaders, that is, corrupt politicians, who are so engrossed in crime that maintaining people’s fear is the only way to keep the power and money they have gained.

By the way, do we know who won this war? We know who lost – the citizens, as always, because of their threats of war, we were certainly left without many fellow citizens for whom it was the trigger for emigration. Citizens are also losers because the constant provocation of the crisis weakens the economy and drives investors, not only foreign but also domestic investors, to invest their money in more stable areas.

Who Is Even Afraid of Sanctions?

It is quite clear that the threats of war to the ruling politicians got stuck in their throats, and that high officials of the American administration explained to them that further mentioning of war could be fatal for their political career. Although they often take moves that lead us to seriously doubt their power of judgement and level of intelligence, they immediately understood this message and dropped the ball of war on the floor accusing others that they were the first to start, and that they were just defending themselves.

The most drastic transformation took place with Dodik, who turned from an enraged wolf, who threatens the secession of RS and the formation of the RS army, into a cute lamb who obediently comes to work in the Presidency of BiH in Sarajevo (all walking on the green sidewalk of Tito’s Street) and with a dumpling in his throat. Like a first-grader at the school play, he reads the prepared text, which says that he respects the territorial integrity of BiH and that there is no plan for the secession of the Republika Srpska, and wonders why anyone would think that he advocated for anything other than the preservation of Dayton Bosnia and Herzegovina.

On the other hand, we have Bakir Izetbegović, who cannot be surprised by the audacity of the American administration, which expects him and Čović to offer a solution to the problem in the country. He rushed to accept the title of the Bosniak leader, but he would not really take on the obligations that such a status brings, even if it is self-proclaimed. Quite a few others did the work for which they were paid and solved the problems they created. In this way, the international community has always helped national parties stay in power because they have never had to take responsibility for the consequences of their bad policies, if they ever had any policy other than a well established and coordinated policy of tightening national relations, and maintains power.

Dragan Čović has no visible changes in his statements because he rarely speaks about anything. He reserved his rare public appearances exclusively for topics of importance to Croats. However, he last addressed the public to express dissatisfaction with the dismissal of Chief Prosecutor Gordana Tadić, otherwise popularly known as a politically independent person. Although it is not clear to what extent this shift is important for BiH. Croats, but it is possible that it is important for one or several Croats. He does not want to interfere in ‘Bosniak-Serb’ problems, as he would with the problem of war threats. This story worried the countries in the region and beyond more than him, who presents himself as the protector of all Croats, at least the legitimate ones. That distance from him was a sufficient sign that we understood that the story of the war was imaginary.

Retirement Home Instead of House of Peoples

And while the citizens are arguing over the bait that the politicians threw at them, our Parliament is turning into a retirement home. Parliamentarians have passed laws that allow them various benefits, which citizens can only dream of. Dozens of members of both houses of the BiH Parliamentary Assembly turned 65 during their term and gained the right to retire. Of course, it never occurs to any of them to really retire and leave the place to someone younger. The law enabled them to retire for only one day, in order to receive a severance pay in the amount of around BAM 30,000, and to return to work the next day and receive a regular salary of 6–7 thousand BAM. And look what they have come up with. They have built into the law that parliamentarians cannot give up these privileges, in order to deny themselves the need to pretend that they hate all this extra money and just give it up. The law does not allow it. It can be seen that many of them have already suffered from senile dementia, so they forget that they are the ones who not only make the laws, but also change them.

Silence Is Golden, at Least for Politicians

And while they will probably spend the money from the shipping on one luxury weekend trip or one bag of a world-famous brand, which most citizens have never heard of, the citizens, who enabled them such a comfortable and luxurious life, can only dream about it. They will deal with how to find a way to feed their family before the onslaught of new price hikes and new levies that politicians honour them with, those politicians that they passionately defend and for which they are ready to give their lives.

They can do all this because the citizens are silent. Not only are they silent when they increase excise taxes, when they invent new contributions or increase old ones, they are silent when they attack others, they are silent while politicians’ mansions grow while their houses are demolished, they are silent while their children are sent abroad, they are silent while their lapdogs attack others… The ‘keep quiet and suffer’ list is endless, because that is one of the strongest features of BiH people. Not only are the citizens silent, but in the next elections they will be rewarded again for all the inaction and chaos they cause.

Does Health Care Cure or Kill Us

However, we shouted when a two-year-old girl died during an operation in a private practice. Too late! We prepared torches to burn those we felt were to blame, without wondering how much of our responsibility it was for the little girl’s death. How much of our responsibility is there because we were silent all the time even though we knew that our health care system was catastrophic and that the question was not whether they would kill us, but how many of us would suffer from health care?

We are silent when, despite the fact that we set aside large sums for health care every month, we do not have any of that. We are silent when they tell us that we have to take everything necessary for the operation, except for the surgeon, whom they will generously provide. We are silent when these surgeons want money for surgery. We are silent when public health doctors send us for treatment in their private surgeries. We are silent when, due to catastrophic public health care, we have to be treated in private health care institutions and pay dearly for it. We are silent when they connect us to poor quality respirators. We are silent when they give us industrial oxygen instead of medical. We are silent when they refuse to treat children. We are silent even though we know that the conditions of treatment are not good either in public health institutions or in many private ones.

No one pays attention to the fact that many surgeries cannot be performed in hospitals because they are overloaded with COVID-19 patients, mostly unvaccinated ones. Antivaxxers do not mention this in their essays on the harmfulness of the vaccine. No one mentions it in connection with the death of a girl whose parents had to take out a loan to pay for surgery in a private practice in Sarajevo because she was put on the list for a cold operative program at a hospital in Zenica in August, just because no emergency surgery was indicated. Nobody mentions that in KB Zenica, due to the epidemiological situation caused by the treatment of COVID-19 patients, the cold surgical operative program was reduced to emergency and oncological indications and acute painful conditions. Nobody mentions how much the low vaccination rate of citizens contributed to that.

We are silent about the fact that now all the authorities know what is rotten in health care, but so far, they have not done anything to solve it. We are silent when we see how politicians and private individuals abuse such situations for their promotion and business expansion. We are silent on the fact that the responsible persons have only now remembered to carry out inspections of private surgeries. We are also silent that such supervision is not carried out in public health institutions. We are silent because the responsible politicians do not even mention the reforms of such a bad health care system, although they are aware that it harms our health, both physical and mental, due to harassment in health care institutions.

We’re silent on this rat’s nest, and then we shout when it is too late, only to be silent again afterwards until some next accident or death. Silence is golden here, but only for corrupt politicians who do what they want, because they know we will not rebel.

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