Bringing Down A Dictator
In the year 2000, in a war barely noticed outside Yugoslavia, the indicted war criminal Slobodan Milosevic fought to hold power. He controlled a battle-hardened army, a tough police force, and most of the news media. But he underestimated his opponents, led by a student movement called Otpor! (Serbian for "resistance"), who attacked the regime with ridicule, rock music, and a willingness to be arrested. Their courage and audacity inspired others to overcome their fear and join the fight. Otpor! students were the shock troops in what became an army of human rights and pro-democracy activists who systematically undermined police and army loyalty to Milosevic and forced him to call early elections. When Milosevic refused to accept his defeat at the polls, the people responded with a general strike. As normal life ground to a halt, Serbs by the hundreds of thousands descended on the capital on October 5 to seize the parliament in a dramatic triumph for democracy. This PBS-produced film narrated by Martin Sheen reveals how ordinary people can overthrow a genocidal dictator and deliver him to justice. This is highly recommended by the Coordinator of Educational Outreach as a vehicle to address issues of resistance and individual responsibility. (56 minutes) For the classroom, go to http://www.pbs.org/weta/dictator/classroom/.
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