Monday, September 12, 2005

I Heart Bruce Lee

I guess there was nothing else uniting the three factions....

Bruce Lee a symbol of unity in divided town

SARAJEVO (Reuters) - The ethnically divided Bosnian city of Mostar has agreed to erect a new symbol of unity -- a statue of kung fu legend Bruce Lee, worshipped by Muslims, Serbs and Croats.

A group of enthusiasts came up with the idea of honoring the childhood hero of the city's ethnic groups in 2003, on the 30th anniversary of his death. They launched the project, found donors and waited a year for the city's approval.

"We plan to erect the statue in November in the center of the city," Veselin Gatalo, a member of the Urban Movement organization, told Reuters by telephone Monday.

"This will be a monument to universal justice that Mostar needs more than any other city I know."

He said Mostar, scene of fighting between Muslims and Croats in 1993-1994, needed a symbol of justice, mastery and honesty -- virtues upheld by the late Chinese-American actor.

Born in San Francisco, Lee starred in several kung fu movies, including 1973's "Enter the Dragon." He died at the age of 32 from swelling on the brain.

A German organization agreed last year to sponsor the project with a 5,000 euro grant.

The statue, cast in bronze and showing the martial arts master in a typical fighting pose, will be designed by a local sculptor and put up in central Mostar.

Lee's widow Linda will be invited to attend the ceremony.

For years, reconciliation in post-war Mostar was slower than anywhere else in Bosnia. But the reconstruction of the city's Old Bridge last year has helped reunite Muslim and Croat communities separated by the river.

What is the American equivalent of Bruce Lee?

posted by Bora Zivkovic @ 3:31 PM | permalink | (2 comments) | Post a Comment | permalink