Friday, October 30, 2015

Open Letter to Novak Djokovic regarding #NoKosovoUnesco


Dear Mr. Djokovic,

I firstly wanted to thank you for everything you and your organization have done to uplift our people and pledge that my organization will continue to support you as best as we can. I was hesitant to write you in regards to the #NoKosovoUnesco petition, and I in fact resisted advice from others to do so earlier. What changed my mind was my conversation with Father Nektarios Serfes whom you met in Boise, Idaho some years ago and gave front row tickets to your match. Father Nektarios Serfes' efforts to provide basic human necessities to Serbs in Kosovo over the past 20 years are, as you know, worthy of sainthood. We spoke for hours about the hardships our Holy Places and their inhabitants face in Kosovo, but one story in particular touched me. Father Nektarios recalled a trip to a neglected monastery housing nuns who had been suffering unspeakable tragedies since the Kosovo conflict began. He was making the same trip he makes every year to the monastery, to bring the relief you and I in the West find comically basic; firewood, pigs, seeds for vegetables. On this occasion, the sisters apologized to Father Nektarios that they did not have food and could only offer him soup. I assumed this took place during the war, but when Father Nektarios told me it was last year my eyes began to water. Being deprived to the point of not being able to offer food to a guest bringing gifts is a humiliation, especially considering the magnitude this carries in our culture, and the fact these are women who have dedicated themselves to God and prayer.

You are the greatest athlete our region has ever produced, a truly exceptional accomplishment considering we are a people par-excellence in sport. I perfectly understand that you must maintain a mainstream, apolitical image and that your critics are anxious to see you make even the slightest mistake. However, a time comes when a person must, regardless of the difficulty and perhaps even consequences of such a decision, act in accordance with their intrinsic morality. The upcoming UNESCO ruling will potentially reward the destroyers of our physical heritage and identity in Kosovo and legitimatize the genocide of our people from a place where both of our families originate. Our petition is more than an asinine attempt to influence UNESCO's decision, it's an opportunity to show Serbs in Kosovo, the brave nuns I mentioned and those suffering in enclaves every day that we care about them, that we haven't forgot about them and that all of Serbia is with them. The petition will later be reutilized as a database of those individuals still devout to the cause, and as such to organize and effectively help every monastery, every church, every family in Kosovo regardless of UNESCO's decision. Lastly, I would like to point out that Muhammed Ali in his prime, as the foremost athlete in the world, made the controversial but noble decision to support Malcolm X and thus eternally endeared himself in the hearts of his people. George Foreman did not, and upon his retirement, his name has seldom been mentioned. To hate injustice and stand on the side of righteousness is a difficult thing. Please sign and share our petition: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/NoKosovoUnesco

Yours sincerely,

Filip Filipi Jankovic
President, 28. Jun 

Otvoreno pismo Novaku Đokoviću povodom inicijative #NoKosovoUnesco


Dragi gospodine Djokoviću,

Pre svega želeo bih da Vam se zahvalim za sve što ste Vi i Vaša organizacija uradili da pomognete našim ljudima, i zalažem se da moja organizacija nastavi da Vas podržava najbolje što može. Bio sam neodlučan da Vam pišem povodom #NoKosovoUnesco peticije, i odoleo sam savetima mnogih da uradim to mnogo ranije. Ono što je promenilo moje mišljenje bio je razgovor sa Ocem Nektariosom Serfesom, koga ste upoznali u Bojziju, u Ajdahu pre par godina, i dali ste mu karte za prvi red vašeg meča. Napori Oca Nektariosa Serfesa da obezbedi osnovne ljudske potrebe Srbima na Kosovu u proteklih 20 godina, su kao što i sami znate dostojni jednog sveca. Razgovarali smo satima o poteškocama naših svetih mesta i problemima koje njihovi žitelji doživljavaju na Kosovu, ali jedna priča me duboko dirnula. Otac Nektarios se prisetio svog puta u zapušteni manastir srpskih monahinja, koje su proživele neizrecive tragedije otkad su počeli konflikti na Kosovu. Krenuo je na isti put na koji je išao svake godine, u manastir, kako bi pružio pomoć u vidu materijalnih stvari koje Vi, i ja, kao i većina ljudi na Zapadu smatramo potpuno normalnim u današnje vreme, a to su, drva za ogrev, svinje i seme za povrće. Ovom prilikom, sestre monahinje su se izvinule Ocu Nektariosu jer nisu imale hranu, samim tim nisu imale ništa čime bi ga posluzile osim supe. Mislio sam da se ovaj dogadjaj odigrao u jeku rata, ali kada mi je Otac rekao da je to bilo prošle godine, oči su mi zasuzile. Biti lišen svega do te mere da nisi u mogucnosti da ponudiš hranu gostu koji ti dolazi sa darovima je veliko poniženje, naročito znajući običaje u našoj kulturi, i činjenici da su ove žene posvetile svoj zivot Bogu i molitvi.

Vi ste najveći sportista koji je ikada potekao sa naših prostora, jedinstven u svojim dostignućima, iako znamo da smo ljudi sa puno vrhunskih sportista. Savršeno razumem da Vi morate zadržati svoj apolitički stav, i da su Vaši kritičari nestrpljivi i čekaju da napravite i najmanju grešku u tom pravcu. Ipak, vremena su takva da čovek mora, bez obzira na teškoće i posledice odluka, da deluje u skladu sa svojim instinktima i moralom. UNESCO će verovatno nagraditi razarače našeg duhovnog i materijalnog nasledja i identiteta na Kosovu i ozakoniti genocid nad našim ljudima iz mesta odakle obe naše porodice vode poreklo. Stoga je naša peticicija više od prostog sakupljanja potpisa koji bi uticali na odluku UNESCO-a, ona je prilika da pokažemo Srbima na Kosovu i Metohiji, i hrabrim monahinjama koje sam pomenuo, kao i onima koji pate i muče se u enklavama svakodnevno, da mi brinemo za njih, da ih nismo zaboravili, i da je cela Srbija uz njih. Peticija ce kasnije biti ponovo iskorišćena kao baza podataka onih pojedinaca koji su posvećeni cilju, i koji su spremni da se organizuju i zaista pomognu svakom manastiru, svakoj crkvi, i svakoj porodici na Kosovu, bez obzira na UNESCO odluku. Na kraju, zeleo bih da istaknem da je Muhamed Ali na vrhuncu svoje slave, kao najbolji sportista na svetu, doneo kontroverznu ali u isto vreme i plemenitu odluku da podrzi Malkoma Iksa, i time zauvek osvojio srca svojih ljudi. Džordž Forman nije to učinio, i po njegovom povlačenju u penziju, njegovo ime je retko kad bilo pomenuto. Ne trpeti nepravdu, i stajati na pravoj strani i strani istine, danas je jako teška stvar. Molim Vas, da potpišete i podelite našu peticiju: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/NoKosovoUnesco

Iskreno Vaš,

Filip Filipi Janković
Predsednik, 28. Jun