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Endangered Site: Visoki Decani Monastery, Kosovo
The Smithsonian Magazine ^ | March 2009 | Kathleen Burke

Posted on 03/06/2009 10:25:16 AM PST by Doctor13

The fate of the 14th-century abbey, one of the best-preserved medieval churches in the Balkans, has been darkened by ethnic violence.

Time stands still within the Visoki Decani Monastery, nestled among chestnut groves at the foot of the Prokletije Mountains in western Kosovo. Declared a World Heritage Site in 2004, Unesco cited the 14th-century abbey as an irreplaceable treasure, a place where "traditions of Romanesque architecture meet artistic patterns of the Byzantine world."

The Serbian Orthodox monastery represents, according to art historian Bratislav Pantelic, author of a book on Decani's architecture, "the largest and best-preserved medieval church in the entire Balkans." Construction of Decani, dedicated to Christ the Pantocrator, or ruler of the universe, commenced in 1327 under King Stefan Uros III Decanski. (The monastery also functions as his mausoleum; the king's coffin rests at the head of the altar.)

The monarch's son, Stefan IV, completed his father's monument and was also responsible for the defining glory of the building's interior: its Byzantine frescoes, several thousand in all. The wall paintings incorporate thousands of individual figures illustrating such themes as the life of Christ, the veneration of the Virgin and the succession of kings in Stefan III's dynasty. Some of the tableaux—the story of Genesis, the Acts of the Apostles and the Proverbs of Solomon—are unique to Byzantine painting. Created over a span of 15 years, the frescoes exist in a state of extraordinary preservation. "When you go in," adds Pantelic, "you see exactly what you would have seen in the mid-1300s. That's what is amazing."

Across the centuries, Pantelic says, the abbey was regarded as "an ancient holy place that transcended religious divisions." In recent years, however, Decani's fate has been darkened by the cycle of ethnic violence that has engulfed the region since the early 1990s. Kosovo's majority ethnic Albanians have long pressed for independence from Serbia. In 1998, then-Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic sent armed forces to crush the separatist movement. A campaign of NATO bombing, followed by the introduction of United Nations peacekeepers (a presence continued today), was required to end the bloodshed.

During the fighting, the monks of Decani, following centuries-old tradition, sheltered refugees of all ethnicities. Yet, Decani's symbolic significance as a Serbian Orthodox cultural monument has rendered the abbey vulnerable.

On March 30, 2007, the monastery was attacked with grenades, presumably thrown by ethnic Albanian insurgents. Fortunately, the damage was "negligible," according to Sali Shoshaj, director of the Kosovo office of Cultural Heritage Without Borders, a Swedish organization founded in 1995 to preserve and restore Balkan sites. At least one person, reports Shoshaj, has been arrested. The situation has stabilized to the point that Decani has reopened to visitors, he says. Local guides, fluent in many languages, lead tours into the church.

Today, the abbey is protected by a force of Italian U.N. peacekeepers, who respectfully stand guard outside its cobblestone courtyard. Decani must "remain intact as part of the Balkan heritage," says Pantelic. "It belongs to all of us."

Additional Sources

The Architecture of Decani and the Role of Archbishop Danilo II by Bratislav Pantelic, Reichert Verlag (Wiesbaden) 2002


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: albanian; antichristian; godsgravesglyphs; islam; kososov; ronlybonlyjones; serb

1 posted on 03/06/2009 10:25:16 AM PST by Doctor13
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To: Doctor13
the monastery was attacked with grenades, presumably thrown by ethnic Albanian insurgents

Don't tell me. Was it the Hasidic terrorists this time? Or the Mormons?

Funny how, in an article about a violent religious conflict (which liberals describe as the quintessence of religion), only one of the religions is named.

2 posted on 03/06/2009 10:30:30 AM PST by SamuraiScot
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To: joan; Smartass; zagor-te-nej; Lion in Winter; Honorary Serb; jb6; Incorrigible; DTA; vooch; ...

3 posted on 03/06/2009 10:33:47 AM PST by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: Doctor13

I have a list of things I’d pay a hundred dollars to watch; at the very top of that list would be Serbia retaking Kosovo on Bork Oinkbama’s watch.


4 posted on 03/06/2009 10:37:35 AM PST by varmintman
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To: SamuraiScot

Visoki (High) Decani

What they are worried about is a repeat of this:

One of over 150 Serbian Orthodox Churches destroyed by Muslim Albanians since 1999.

5 posted on 03/06/2009 10:41:38 AM PST by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: varmintman

I would like to see that too. Unfortunately he won’t pull out the U.S. troops, so it won’t happen.


6 posted on 03/06/2009 10:52:08 AM PST by Skenderbej
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To: Bokababe; Calpernia; Fred Nerks; null and void; pissant; george76; PhilDragoo; Candor7; ...
#5. Off topic, but might be of interest.

Could it happen here?

7 posted on 03/06/2009 11:00:28 AM PST by LucyT
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To: Doctor13

The muslim ‘police’ need to guard their own women from the ravages of their own muzzies beating and murdering them. Let Christians police their own holy sites.

http://doctorbulldog.wordpress.com/2008/03/15/beatings-slavery-haunts-kosovo-albanian-women/


8 posted on 03/06/2009 11:00:48 AM PST by eleni121 (EN TOUTO NIKA!! + In this sign Conquer! +)
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To: eleni121
"The muslim ‘police’ need to guard their own women from the ravages of their own muzzies beating and murdering them."

Not just in Kosovo, but all over the world.

Bulletin of the Oppression of Women, Facts without comments-- We Collect the Dots; You Connect Them

And there is this on the same site:

Bulletin of Christian Persecution Facts without comments-- We Collect the Dots; You Connect Them with a fair amount of incidents in Bosnia and Kosovo listed.

9 posted on 03/06/2009 11:30:49 AM PST by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: LucyT
"Could it happen here?"

It already has begun to happen here!

'Too Christian' for Academia? A four-volume encyclopedia gets pulped in the name of political correctness.

10 posted on 03/06/2009 11:36:02 AM PST by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1ofmanyfree; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; 31R1O; ...

· join list or digest · view topics · view or post blog · bookmark · post a topic ·

 
Gods
Graves
Glyphs
Thanks LucyT.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother, and Ernest_at_the_Beach
 

·Dogpile · Archaeologica · ArchaeoBlog · Archaeology · Biblical Archaeology Society ·
· Discover · Nat Geographic · Texas AM Anthro News · Yahoo Anthro & Archaeo · Google ·
· The Archaeology Channel · Excerpt, or Link only? · cgk's list of ping lists ·


11 posted on 03/06/2009 12:28:18 PM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/____________________ Profile updated Monday, January 12, 2009)
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To: eleni121
The muslim ‘police’ need to guard their own women from the ravages of their own muzzies beating and murdering them"

Thanks for the laugh! Assuming the Serbianna link is true: "A 2000 Un study estimates that 25% of Kosovo’s Albanian Muslim females suffer physical or psychological abuse but only 1,000 cases of domestic violence have been recorded by Kosovo Albanian authorities."

here's what they say about Serbia: "In Serbia, some estimate that domestic violence affects up to half of all women regardless of socio-economic or ethnic status. If victims seek help at all, they often face a legal and judicial system that perpetuates the guilt and shame they already feel, further handicapping them.

In western Serbia's Uzice municipality, for example, police reports from 2003 document only 20 domestic violence cases. And, according to recent domestic-violence awareness training recently conducted by USAID partner ABA/CEELI, Serbian judges and prosecutors largely view domestic violence as a family matter outside of the courts' purview."

Most of the trafficked women are Russian, Moldovan or Ukrainian, so desperate to get away from their abusive, drunk males that they fall for the trafficker lies. Does 'Russian mail order bride' ring a bell?

On a 1-10 scale, how dumb do you feel now?

12 posted on 03/06/2009 3:04:18 PM PST by nameless-fool
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To: nameless-fool
On a 1-10 scale, how dumb do you feel now?

I would suggest that you not make issues "personal."

Mkay.

13 posted on 03/06/2009 8:14:22 PM PST by LjubivojeRadosavljevic
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To: nameless-fool
Seeing that you are nameless may I name you---how about

Dumb Nazi Turk

Now that you have a real name a name to know you by I can respond accordingly:

Dumb Nazi Turk


14 posted on 03/06/2009 9:02:02 PM PST by eleni121 (EN TOUTO NIKA!! + In this sign Conquer! +)
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To: eleni121

What’s up with the anger? Think before insulting others, that’s all. It turns out Serbs are even worst at domestic abuse than the people you bashed.

Ps. I am not a Nazi and definitely didn’t come from Asia minor like some others in the 1920’s.


15 posted on 03/06/2009 9:18:20 PM PST by nameless-fool
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To: nameless-fool
Think before insulting others...

I would also suggest that you do the same...or am I asking for too much?

16 posted on 03/06/2009 11:02:00 PM PST by LjubivojeRadosavljevic
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To: Doctor13; maher; Bokababe
Thanks for posting this Doctor.

The destruction of Serbian Orthodox Churches (CHRISTIAN churches) in the Kosovo and Metohija area has been one of the great tragedies of that area. The "Humanitarians" of the West have virtually ignored this phenomenon, which proves just how phony these bleeding hearts are.

A particularly bad year was 1999, the year of the "Bombing by NATO".

The following website provides a good overview of the casualties suffered by the Serbian churches during just one short period of a few months.

http://www.rastko.org.yu/kosovo/crucified/default.htm

Catalog of Destroyed and Desecrated Churches in Kosovo and Metohia (June-October 1999)

Number of destroyed and desecrated Serbian shrines in different zones of responsibility of KFOR units deployed in Kosovo and Metohia (total 76)

21 USA

21 Italy

17 Germany

10 United Kingdom

7 France

Just one of the examples:

The church of the Holy Virgin Hodegetria, built in 1315. Think about that. This church survived even the rule of the Ottoman Turks in that area for centuries.

And after the "mining":

Funny how the "Humanitarians" all seem to have an overwhelming compassion for the 'Muslim casualties', but when it comes to 'Christian' casualties, they are not so empathetic. And still they do not see the huge mistake they have made in judgment.

By the way, the Turks were actually quite accomodating of the Serbian Orthodox Church for over 4 centuries of Ottoman rule. They "allowed" the SOC to exist and flourish.

What has happened, and been allowed to happen, to the Serbian Orthodox Church in these 'modern' times is a WAR CRIME.

____________

17 posted on 03/07/2009 5:14:48 AM PST by Ravnagora
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To: LjubivojeRadosavljevic

Ronly Bonly Jones, in his various re-incarnations, only knows how to spew anti-Christian hatred.


18 posted on 03/07/2009 6:31:46 AM PST by FormerLib (Sacrificing our land and our blood cannot buy protection from jihad.-Bishop Artemije of Kosovo)
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To: nameless-fool

Hey Fool

You are on a fool’s errand


19 posted on 03/07/2009 9:14:09 AM PST by eleni121 (EN TOUTO NIKA!! + In this sign Conquer! +)
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To: eleni121

He’s a fool on a marathon of a Jihadist’s errand.


20 posted on 03/07/2009 1:33:47 PM PST by FormerLib (Sacrificing our land and our blood cannot buy protection from jihad.-Bishop Artemije of Kosovo)
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To: Doctor13; FormerLib; Bokababe; eleni121; Kolokotronis; kosta50; TexConfederate1861

What this article does not mention is that Decani Monastery is a center of humanitarian aid for the people of Kosovo. You may contribute funds for their efforts either through IOCC (designate checks for “Kosovo” in the memo line), or the Decani Monastery Relief Fund:

http://fr-d-serfes.org/missionary/crossstillaburden.htm

Most importantly, Decani Monastery is a center of prayer and the sacramental presence of God:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSTnrYZgjfw&playnext_from=PL&feature=PlayList&p=CB5937D5FCC0346A&playnext=1&index=27

Decani is by NO MEANS merely a UNESCO-designated site for its artistic and historic value. It is a center of Christian worship, life, and love.

Save Decani, save Kosovo!!!!


21 posted on 03/07/2009 2:05:39 PM PST by Honorary Serb (Kosovo is Serbia! Free Srpska! Abolish ICTY!)
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To: eleni121; FormerLib; nameless-fool
We already know what his name is--Ronly Bonly Jones, the notorious troll!!

'Nuff said!!!!

22 posted on 03/07/2009 2:14:13 PM PST by Honorary Serb (Kosovo is Serbia! Free Srpska! Abolish ICTY!)
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To: Bokababe; lightman

In “mainline” protestant churches, such as the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America that I left to become Orthodox, it is already taboo to say the truth that islam spread by bloody conquest and oppression, and wants to do the same to the remaining “kuffar” world.

So the encyclopedia editor is in line with what passes for “enlightened, informed Christian opinion”, but is really just the opposite!


23 posted on 03/07/2009 2:20:30 PM PST by Honorary Serb (Kosovo is Serbia! Free Srpska! Abolish ICTY!)
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To: Ravnagora
By the way, the Turks were actually quite accomodating of the Serbian Orthodox Church for over 4 centuries of Ottoman rule. They "allowed" the SOC to exist and flourish.

The Turks were always nice to collaborators and quiet serfs.

How many mosques or Catholic Churches are still standing in what is now Republic Srpska?

How many Albanian houses did Serbs destroy on purpose during their "crimes against humanity" campaign?

24 posted on 03/07/2009 4:20:27 PM PST by nameless-fool
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To: FormerLib; nameless-fool; Honorary Serb; eleni121; Ravnagora; LjubivojeRadosavljevic
And the 3-week newbie, along with his "3 times a sphincter" Albanian buddy are here to give us "morality lessons". What a joke! The most corrupt, Albanian Muslim narco-terrorist, sex-slavers are here to tell us what Serbs have done "wrong" to their women.

God, Spare me please! It's like being forced to listen to Michael Jackson give lessons on child-rearing!

25 posted on 03/07/2009 5:33:47 PM PST by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: Bokababe; FormerLib; nameless-fool; eleni121

“nameless-fool” is NOT a newbie, but the returned-from-banishment Ronly Bonly Jones.

Bonly, a notorious troll, is just recycling his usual stuff, often using the very same phrases as before.

And, as usual, he quotes unreliable sources. I tried to work with USAID (the source of Bonly’s “abuse” quote on this thread) quite a few years ago, so I know!!!! Of course, quoting USAID is a few notches above quoting the ICTY, which Bonly (and Hoppy) do all the time!


26 posted on 03/07/2009 6:31:47 PM PST by Honorary Serb (Kosovo is Serbia! Free Srpska! Abolish ICTY!)
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To: Honorary Serb
“nameless-fool” is NOT a newbie, but the returned-from-banishment Ronly Bonly Jones.

This guy Bonly has more lives than a cat. You'd think they'd figure out his IP address by now and ban him for life!

27 posted on 03/07/2009 7:01:51 PM PST by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: Bokababe
The most corrupt, Albanian Muslim narco-terrorist, sex-slavers are here to tell us what Serbs have done "wrong" to their women

Defending rapists again? Some nations would find it shameful, but Serbia is in running with Sudan, Somalia and Congo when it comes to morals. Will Bashir share the same jail cell as your hero, Karadzic?

Regarding Iran: Serbia, Iran to promote parliamentary ties

and like your motherland: Iran, Serbia sign security agreement

Tell us how Serbia resisted the Nazis again, go ahead. How do you guys like that Croatia and Albania are both joining NATO? Try something, go get your 'Jerusalem', or Krajina! Even Dodik shut his mouth now:

"Milorad Dodik, the Prime Minister of the Serb-dominated Bosnian entity of Republika Srpska, has seemingly softened his radical rhetoric and temporarily abandoned plans for his entity’s independence, local media reported on Wednesday. The apparent shift in Dodik’s attitude came after his meeting on Tuesday with Stuart Jones, the deputy US Assistant Secretary in charge of the Balkans."

http://balkaninsight.com/en/main/news/17122/

28 posted on 03/07/2009 8:01:50 PM PST by nameless-fool
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To: Honorary Serb

Oh, that is not reliable?

http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,21985,24116743-661,00.html
Reality TV uncovers domestic violence in Serbia

21 August 2008 in Domestic Violence, Europe, Family Marriage Partnership, Media

A bridegroom on a popular Serbian television show brags how he slaps his bride now and then - with her mother’s approval.

The bashful bride acknowledges, while looking adoringly at her husband-to-be, that she can be lazy and disobedient and should be hit in the face from time to time.

The scene from 48-Hour Wedding, a reality TV show that sets up Serb couples for real nuptials, points to a less romantic issue in the macho Balkan society: spousal abuse.

Domestic violence is the most common kind of abuse in Serbia and every third women has been a victim, surveys of non-governmental groups say. Laws have been tightened, but lenient punishment and a patriarchal society remain hurdles.

“A slap in Serbia still isn’t regarded as beating. To slap a woman in the face if her husband is annoyed is considered OK,” Vesna Stanojevic of the Consultancy Against Domestic Violence told local media.

Many men in Serbia, unsettled by the nation’s defeats in the 1990s Balkan wars and crumbling moral values, believe women should stay at home and take care of their men and children.

“Of course, beating is out of the question, but a slap now and then - why not? She needs to know her place,” said taxi driver Pera, who declined to give his last name.

Most victims are believed to be among Serbia’s Roma population and Serb refugees who fled to the homeland during the recent wars. But the abusers can be found in all walks of life.

One woman spoke out to Deutsche Presse-Agentur (DPA) about her dentist husband, refusing to give her name out of fear of another beating.

“Where can I go? Whom can I turn to? Nobody will believe me. He’s a well-respected dentist and I’m his sweet, good-looking wife,” she said.

“So I stay with him. Thank God I can’t have children, so he can’t hurt them,” she said. “But he hits me because I can’t give him sons.”

Advocacy groups believe women report attacks by the men in their lives in only one of 20 cases. There are no official data.

Vanja Macanovic of Belgrade’s Autonomous Women’s Centre blames lack of cooperation among state institutions, slow courts and women’s fear of their attackers.

In 78 per cent of domestic violence cases, a husband, ex-husband or partner is the source, the consultancy says.

And domestic violence was behind about 30 per cent of murders committed in Serbia in 2007, data shows.

The Belgrade Centre for Human Rights says Serb judges are often judgmental toward the victims and unlikely to remove culprits from the home or issue restraining orders. Usually, offenders get one year’s probation or a fine.

Women who go to court are liable to be faced with months of proceedings, with humiliating testimony to police and in front of a court and perpetrators who accuse them of “asking for it.” e Getting away from violent male spouses is also difficult. Serbia has only three safe houses for abused women, though more are due to be built.

In a country where democracy, rule of law and membership in the European Union are goals for more than 70 per cent of population, wife beaters are still considered macho men.

“I tried leaving home and finding a job, but he’d always find me,” the dentist’s wife said. “I tried fighting back but the last time I did that, he broke my jaw and left hand.”

“Now I try to stay away and hope that he’ll kill me the next time he hits me,” she said.


29 posted on 03/07/2009 8:12:03 PM PST by nameless-fool
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To: nameless-fool

The Christian Serbs attempt to preserve a medieval Christian treasure and you respond by attempting to smear all Serbians.

You never change, Bonly-boy.


30 posted on 03/08/2009 9:22:35 AM PDT by FormerLib (Sacrificing our land and our blood cannot buy protection from jihad.-Bishop Artemije of Kosovo)
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To: FormerLib

I was responding in kind to accusations thrown, accusations that had nothing to do with the monastery.


31 posted on 03/08/2009 9:31:01 AM PDT by nameless-fool
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To: nameless-fool
"I was responding in kind to accusations thrown, accusations that had nothing to do with the monastery."

If these "accusations" have "nothing to do with the monastery", then why are you trolling this thread?

This is a discussion thread on the subject of the monastery, not your own personal toilet!

32 posted on 03/08/2009 11:08:01 AM PDT by Bokababe (Save Christian Kosovo! http://www.savekosovo.org)
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To: Ravnagora; LucyT

BTTT. Very tragic and doubly so that such hateful destruction and violence is ignored by the west and the MSM.

LucyT -it could indeed happen here; we’re on that trajectory. Just depends if it changes direction or not. HOw much “community organizing” goes on, and if the head “community organizer” gets dragged off the stage or not.


33 posted on 03/08/2009 5:20:48 PM PDT by little jeremiah (THa)
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