"Among newspaper editors in the former Yugoslavia, Kemal Kurspahic showed how to challenge communism, nationalism, and the politics of hate. With Prime Time Crime, he leads the way again, with a penetrating account of how many media outlets in his old homeland worked to turn communities against each other. He writes with a pain and passion informed by his own experience, but with the insight he gained by stepping back for a wider view."
- Tom Gjelten,
"Anyone who thinks Slobodan Milosevic left no paper trail is looking in the wrong place. Kemal Kurspahic's fascinating book documents how Milosevic seized control of the media, directed it, and organized the mechanism for propagating the Big Lie-turning truth on its head. As nationalism took over, a lot of journalists sold out their principles. But there are heroes in the story, the courageous few who never yielded to the demagogues. This is a rich, absorbing, and cautionary tale."
- Roy Gutman,
''No one knows the secrets and nuances of Balkan media politics better than Kemal Kurspahic. A journalist of exemplary courage and integrity, he has told here the incredible inside story of how wicked politicians -- abetted by many intellectuals and a few complicit journalists -- tried to strangle democracy and promote bloody wars in the name of a nationalism some of them didn't even believe in.''
- Keith Spicer,
"Writers who have lived through what Kemal Kurspahic lived through as Editor-in-Chief of Oslobodjenje during the tragic siege of Sarajevo tend to get caught up in their own personal experiences. What is striking about Prime Time Crime, however, is that Kemal has provided a far broader perspective on the role of the media in the former Yugoslavia. It is not unusual to find excellent books on the history of conflict in the Balkans. They address the question of why things went wrong. It is more difficult to find thoughtful analysis of the current situation that analyzes why things are still wrong.
Most difficult of all to find are thoughtful policy prescriptions that deal with what must be done to make things better. Kemal Kurspahic has written an outstanding book that covers the history and current situation and provides such policy prescriptions. This is a must read for anyone seeking to understand the role of the media in regions of conflict.
- Richard D. Kauzlarich,
"We have finally got a brilliant analyses of media in the last 50 years of once common state (of Yugoslavia) and now of independent states, which - to my great satisfaction - was written by a domestic author. Knowing the whole picture from inside as a long-time reporter, correspondent and editor, Kemal Kurspahic navigates this minefield in a sovereign manner, offering us an exciting story, which you follow with the expectation of each new page even if you basically know the story and its background. The book is at the same time a guide to prospective authors on how to seriously and systematically write publications of this sort, following one of the rules of a high-quality literature, 'Don't write what you think you know, write what you can prove.'"
- Boro Kontic,
A reader's review: Modern history and real-life cautionary tale
Prime Time Crime: Balkan Media In War And Peace by Kemal Kurspahic offers a compelling tale of power, control, threat, and the outnumbered few who fought to preserve their journalistic integrity during the bloody Balkan conflicts. Closely examining Slobodan Milosevics stranglehold on the media and his callous use of it to churn out favorable propaganda for his murderous and genocidal expansionism, Prime Time Crime is a combination of modern history and real-life cautionary tale, which is especially recommended reading for students of Journalism, Contemporary European Studies, and Post-Cold War Yugoslavian History.
I rate Prime Time Crime: Balkan Media in War & Peace - 5/5