The DJ and the War Crimes: Using Photography to Seek Justice After the Event

June 6, 2023
11:00–12:15PM EDT
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Serbian Tiger leader Zeljko Raznatovic or Arkan poses with his paramilitary unit, waving the Serbian flag, and a baby tiger that he liberated from a Croatian zoo in Erdut, Croatia, in the fall of 1991. Arkan's Tigers were responsible for a large part of the ethnic cleansing that occurred at the beginning of the war in Bosnia. Photograph by Ron Haviv / VII

Ron Haviv’s photographs of the April 1992 killings in Bijelina, Bosnia Herzegovina, symbolized that genocidal conflict and should have been a tool in holding the perpetrators accountable. 

But 30 years later, many of those who ethnically cleansed the civilian population – combatants who were part of Arkan’s Tigers – still walk free. Indeed, one of them leads a public life in Europe as a club DJ.

In the absence of accountability for the massacre in Bijeljina, Rolling Stone partnered with The Starling Lab to help archive and authenticate key records. Rolling Stone published their investigation in a remarkable piece of immersive storytelling

In this event, we speak with Ron Haviv and Adam Rose of Starling Lab, and hear from staff at Rolling Stone, to discuss how this reportage was made, the role of visuals in the investigation, and the significance of open-source technologies to the verification of war crimes and the pursuit of justice.


Ron Haviv is both an Emmy-nominated filmmaker and an award-winning photojournalist. He is the co-founder of VII Photo Agency and The VII Foundation.

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