First Woman Brigadier in the History of the AF BiH: Being a Soldier means primarily to be Humane

December 12, 2016 8:00 AM

woman-brigadierThe Center for Security Studies (CSS) is implementing the project “Empowering women for a stronger integration in the security sector of BiH through public promotion of successful women leaders of WISE”, which is supported by the Government of Canada through the Canada Fund for Local Initiatives (CFLI).

As part of this project, representatives of CSS talked with Mersida Mesetovic, the first woman brigadier in the history of the Armed Forces of BiH. She had a successful long-term career in the military profession, and she is also a wife and mother of two adult children.

“My work has no difficulties because I always say that being a soldier is humane call and I absolutely would not put the existence of the armed forces or the army in general in some negative context and say that this is a job with flaws. However, unlike some other professions, professions of people in uniform, regardless of whether they are soldiers, policemen or firemen, involves teamwork. When you are engaged in a segment like that, it involves teamwork, supporting people, and when you have to live and work like that, then you gain special friendship and special respect for each other. This is your guarantee that you will fulfill your duties very well. Everyone in life chooses his profession,” said Mesetovic.

Mesetovic believes that women should be more represented in the security sector.

“The security institutions have to reflect the structure of society that we live in. This reflection implies that we need to have young people, middle and older generation, and, in general, men and women represented in the system. So, everyday work and tasks of servicing the citizens of BiH dictates that there should be more women in all sectors of society, including the security sector,” she said.

“When people ask me the question whether I would build my career in the Armed Forces if I could choose again, and it was not always nice for sure, I always say that I definitely would. I always say, being a soldier primarily means to be humane. Being willing to sacrifice your life or part of your body in order for someone in this country or anywhere in the world to be peaceful and safe, is a great thing and not anyone can do it,” said Mesetovic.

She believes that “people who love freedom, who love to do an honest job and be proud of what they do, will surely find a good reason to work in the Armed Forces”.

“I would always recommend to young people to come and try. Rarely anyone says at the end that they are not for this job, and young girls certainly need to enter into this system, to contribute to the role of women in the armed forces in larger number, with dedication, desire and skill to do this job. They will certainly be happy here,” said Mersida Mesetovic, the first woman brigadier in the history of the Armed Forces of BiH.



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