“Kadir’s narrative of his escape from Srebrenica in the last days of the Bosnian War is both beautifully poetic and poignantly sad. It is also mesmerizing. The systemic starvation of his town, the unleashed hatred and torture of those with different names and or a different religion is unbearably heartbreaking. Having to leave your home and country, watching it destroyed and burned, not knowing if your brothers, daughter, wife or mother are alive … all are understood and felt with each footstep. The genocide done by co-workers and neighbors, who you considered friends, is horrifying.”
Tiffany Grantham (Former Editorial Artist at The Miami Herald)
“Told by a non-professional writer, this true story filled my mind’s eye with images of extreme hunger, physical pain, spiritual searching, and camaraderie, and made me want to read on, following the writer’s journey from a devastated town back to freedom and his family. Although terrifyingly painful, the clear, direct writing provides a gratifying read, and gives voice to the survivors and victims of this slaughter, people who wanted merely to live their lives as themselves as they and their ancestors had for a long time before.”
Diana Bloom, Ph.D. (Writer & educator)
“This is a gripping, intense story of how someone survived a genocide, many times barely, by drawing the strength to survive not only from his desire to be reunited with his Bosniak family but also from the inspiration of his religious sensibility and his desire that the genocide be remembered and justice be done. This is a gripping story, to say the least. I read it from beginning to end in one sitting, which I very rarely do.”
Thomas Breslin, Ph.D. (Historian & author)
“I’ve spent all day reading Kadir’s account of his 17 day ordeal, before finally reaching safety and be reunited with his family. It wasn’t by any means an easy read, but I felt I couldn’t tear myself away from it for a moment. I think it’s the first time I’ve read a book in one single day. On a personal level, although I couldn’t begin to compare Kadir’s story to my experiences in the Balkans, I was however, deeply moved by many of his observations, particularly on the subject of hatred and its consequences. Some of the place-names brought back many memories for me. I am not a religious man myself, but I also felt touched by his finding faith, despite (or because of) his ordeal. It is because of stories, like Kadir’s and others who suffered so much, that the priorities in my life changed, and why I try to help educate people about what happened in Bosnia.”
Robert McNeil, MBE. FAAPT(Hon).
Before you is the testimony of a man who was brought to be murdered with a group of his fellow citizens – all without guilt, without trial, without judgment – and who, thanks to his determination and circumstances, accepted the game of life against death. The guilt of those killed? They were Bosniaks by nationality, and Muslims by religion.
The information in the book may not make it easier for you to understand how such brutality and inhumanity was possible at all, but these facts will convince you that, as incredible as it may seem, the Srebrenica genocide was committed just as bloody and criminal as it was experienced and described in this book by Kadir Habibović.
As amazing as it may seem to you, the whole story is true! As well as the story of unpunished aggression against a sovereign UN member state; and the story of the genocide against Bosniaks committed by the Serb army; and the story of Kadir Habibović about his spectacular and victorious struggle of life against death. When you read a detailed description of everything that happened to him; not only the extreme physical exertion he endured in a state of hunger and thirst, but also the traumatic psychic experiences and nightmarish hallucinations and daydreams that shook him day and night – I am sure you will see the truth as well.
Ferid Muhić, Ph.D. (The Ss. Cyril and Methodius University, Skopje, N. Macedonia)
“Marked for execution like thousands of his fellow Bosniaks, Kadir Habibovic escapes his fate and shares with us the story of his almost impossible survival. In heart-wrenching detail, he describes the excruciating pain, hunger, and desperation that shaped this brutal struggle, as well as how his faith made him persevere. Habibovic allows the reader to come extremely close to this unspeakable experience. His story telling makes palpable the trauma he and so many others have been enduring. It also instils a sense of hope, strength and responsibility that together we must and will work together to never let genocide happen again, anywhere and to anyone.”
Susanne Zwingel, Ph.D. (Author)
“Habibović’s memoir Life Against Death is set in the Bosnia-Herzegovina war, in the besieged city of Srebrenica. Describing his experiences in graphic and stirring detail, Habibović recounts the horrific sufferings endured by Bosniaks during a bloody, ethnic cleansing campaign led by the Bosnian Serb army. Similar to Chechnya’s war for independence in the mid-1990s, innocent men, women, and children alike suffered the greatest atrocities in the Bosnian War. Habibović’s experiences serve as a reminder that no injustice should go unpunished and the importance of diplomacy for peaceful conflict resolution.”
Khassan Baiev, MD (Author, The Oath: Surgeon Under Fire)
“This is a very well written memoir by a non-professional writer and very readable for an ordinary person, even as it managed to show the bestiality of the human species. It is a very important piece of work. It is a very powerful book.”
Ruth Daniloff (Author)