On Tour With the 'Butcher of Bosnia'

The joint is unpleasantly small, with just a bar and four small tables, jammed with Balkan men and no women. Locals joke that sitting among them could be Ratko Mladic -- Karadzic's military commander who is still at large and whose picture hangs on the wall alongside that of Karadzic and of his wartime ally, Slobodan Milosevic, the former Serbian leader who died during his own trial in The Hague in 2006.

Customers often turn to the gusle, a traditional lone-stringed folk instrument. One night, they say, Karadzic himself played the gusle. " It was the most beautiful sound," recalls one of the regulars, while pouring one more glass of "Bear's blood."

Karadzic Pancakes

Following the route of the No. 73 bus line, the bus on which the authorities say he was arrested -- a claim he disputes -- the tour arrives at the Pinocchio pancake shop in suburban Zemun, which now features a menu item called the Karadzic pancake. Filled with chocolate and cranberry, it was reportedly his favorite treat.

"We wanted to find out some more about Karadzic," said one vacationer, a lawyer from Ljubljana, Slovenia .

She and her husband were on a weekend break in Belgrade. Others on the tour were a family with two teenage daughters from Croatia, several French teenagers, three women from Germany and a Cypriot .

Claire Bernard, 20, a French history student, said, "It's pretty interesting to see all the places where Karadzic was."

Locals Disturbed by Tourist Interest

The tour ends with a stroll past the front of the Serbian war crimes tribunal where Karadzic spent his last few days before he dispatched to the Hague.

The 1990s Balkan war period rouses such agony among pro-European Serbs that few locals would care to do the Karadzic sites tour as part of a happy holiday.

"I can't imagine who would actually want to take the tour," said Marko Jeftic, an Internet marketer who lives in Belgrade. "Maybe it's just a way of creating attention for the tour operators. Why would foreign tourists want to walk in the footsteps of a war criminal? It's completely idiotic."

"We face up to the past, but often only after a long reluctance," says Gorcin Stojanovic, a prominent Belgrade movie director. "A tour in Karadzic's footsteps should actually be organized in Bosnia, and it should include all places where horrible war crimes were committed, and of which he has been accused. That tour would be something."

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