the dawn of March 1996. one of our teams with 23 participants
headed towards Drinić. We fought through 17 hours over
Ribnik, Vučje poljane, Bobija and Srnetica. In Ribnik
we asked for a help from IFOR and they escorted us up
to location called Vučja Poljana. IFOR escort left us
there, because by their own rules they had to be back
to the base before dark. We headed alone in the forest
tractor fighting with snow and ice towards Dirnić. Road
over mountain Bobija looked like the one from the story
of Jack London and the time of the first American trappers.
We arrived to Drinić quite late and we found what we expected
to find. It was around 10 o’clock in the evening, moonlight
and a heavy winter so the first thing we did was to report
to IFOR forces at the separation line between two entities.
After that we went back to Drinić and out of 153 houses
we found only few of them more or less in one piece. In
one of the houses we spent a night. Before we went to
bed each of us went to visit his own house because we
could not wait the dawn to see how Drinić looks like.
We had no fear at all and what we saw was really scary.
Almost everything was burnt down and what could not be
burnt down was systematically destroyed. We found nothing
in one piece so we went to the house where we were about
to spend night very disappointed. We could not sleep because
we were talking about conditions of our houses. We did
not find anything except corps of dead domestic animals
and one gravely silence that killed. The death ruled
over there and
The next day we managed to visit our graveyard in the next
village Bukovača that was left on the Federation side. There
were weeds all over the area as far as the view could reach.
The first thing we planned to do was to roof the houses
and protect them from the further distraction. We started
to cut woods right after our first arrival. We, foresters
managed to organize very quickly because we did not have
much of the equipment. Everything was left in Bosanski Petrovac.
We had to bag in Banja Luka. We asked around the military
camps, went around commissariats to get the blanket, bed,
stove and some food to eat. With 200 dinar on the account
we started to work and day after day the hope was growing
bigger and bigger and we progressed more and more. There
were more and more returnees and the new roofs on the houses
started to bring joy to our eyes. There was a sound of the
nail and the bricks started to build up and the life was
coming back to Drinić. From ashes, really out of ashes,
Drinić was built up where today most of visitors say that
it went way to far and became a small town with everything
necessary in the sense of that word.