15 Years Ago Today
The Battle of Vukovar was an 87-day siege of the Croatian city of Vukovar by the Yugoslav People's Army (JNA), supported by various Serbian paramilitary forces, between August-November 1991 during the Croatian War of Independence. It ended with the defeat of the local Croatian National Guard, the near-total destruction of Vukovar and the massacre or expulsion of its defenders and non-Serb population.
The fate of those captured at Vukovar – both military and civilians – was grim. Many appear to have been summarily executed by Serbian paramilitaries; journalists visiting the town immediately after its fall reported seeing the streets strewn with bodies in civilian clothes. BBC television reporters recorded Serbian paramilitaries chanting "Slobodane, Slobodane, šalji nam salate, biće mesa, biće mesa, klaćemo Hrvate!" ("Slobodan [Milošević], Slobodan, send us some salad, [for] there will be meat, there will be meat, we will butcher the Croats").