THE GREAT SERBIAN-AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION HOAX
Nikola Kostich, a friend and fellow attorney with whom I tried cases before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, passed away last week in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I am finally free to confess to the Great Serbian-American Bar Association Hoax. So, ever so belatedly, here is the truth, the nitty-gritty, the real skinny on that caper.
Brits and Americans have this penchant for associations catering to inane and arcane interests - witness the International Association for Bear Research and Management, the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention and the British Llama Society. Cambridge University alone boasts of more than 200 registered clubs and societies while the United States Internal Revenue Service recognizes some 90,908 trade and professional associations and hundreds of thousands of philanthropic and charitable associations, so who is going question yet another?
Nick and I were licking our legal wounds after suffering ignominious defeat at the hands of the Feds in the Nikola “Lovać na Tita” Kavaja/Boško “The Yugo” Radonjić/SOPO trial and the hijacking of American Airline Flight 293; for those of you for whom the names and events do not ring a bell, Google away for a bit of history. “Drowning” might be a more apt description of the activity since we were drinking I.W. Harper’s bourbon on the terrace of my office, high above Madison Avenue in New York City.
From those bourbon infused fumes was born the idea of founding yet another futile endeavor – the Serbian-American Bar Association. With many a hoot and holler we expanded on the idea. Not satisfied in just expounding on the idea between sips of bourbon we set about in writing a press release announcing its birth and then, besotted, sent it out to the media.