Three-finger salute (Serbian)
The three-finger salute (Serbian: три прста/tri prsta, English: three fingers) is a salute which originally expressed the Serbian orthodoxism, but today its a simply sign for Serbia, used also by Serbs from other faiths, made by extending the thumb, index, and middle fingers of one or both hands.
Origins and symbolism
One popular theory on the origin of the salute is based on the way that Orthodox Serbs perform the Sign of the Cross, with three extended fingers representing the Trinity. A saying often used by Serbs is: Nema krsta bez tri prsta ("There is no cross without three fingers").
The gesture in its modern form is attributed to Vuk Drašković, leader of the opposition Serbian Renewal Movement. In a 2007 interview, he explained that he first used it in 1990 at the founding meeting of the movement. Drašković found inspiration in a painting by Paja Jovanović depicting the Serbian prince Miloš Obrenović greeting Serb insurgents during the Takovo Uprising of 1815. During the March 1991 street demonstrations in Belgrade, the three fingers were massively used by Drašković's supporters, representing the three demands that the Serbian Renewal Movement had put before the government.
However there are other meanings of the salute and it is also used by some political opponents of the Serbian Renewal Movement. Srđan Srećković, a vice president of the Serbian Renewal Movement, said in an interview to Kurir that it can also symbolize "one finger for St. Sava, the other finger for Njegoš, and the third finger for Karađorđe". At the eve of the Yugoslav wars, the salute was popularized by Jovan Rašković, leader of the Republic of Serbian Krajina. His daughter Sanda Rašković-Ivić said that he never gave explanation for using it.
||This section may contain excessive, poor, or irrelevant examples. (September 2012)|
The salute is also used by members and supporters of almost all Serbian political parties (excluding LDP and SPS) on their rallies during election campaigns. It can be seen at all kinds of street demonstrations, notably the Kosovo is Serbia rally.
Eurovision song contest winner, Marija Šerifović, while celebrating the maximum of 12 points that she received from Bosnian viewers displayed the three-finger salute. This caused controversy as some Bosnian viewers saw it as provocation, but Swedish Serbs called it ridiculous, saying the salute is nothing more than a modified V sign.
Rade Leskovac, president of the Party of Danube Serbs, a Serbian minority party in Croatia, caused a controversy in 2007 when election posters featuring him giving the three-fingered salute were posted around the city of Vukovar.
The salute is often used by sport fans and players when celebrating sport victories. After winning the 1995 European basketball championship, the entire Yugoslav team displayed the three fingers. Sasha Djordjevic says he flashed the three fingers "not to be provocative. Just: That's Serbia, that's us, that's me – nothing else. It's my pride. " During the last and decisive UEFA Euro 2000 qualifying match between Croatia and FR Yugoslavia, played at Stadion Maksimir in Zagreb, on 9 October 1999, Zoran Mirković, after being sent off, flashed the three finger salute.
After Serbia and Montenegro won the World Championship in water polo in the 2005, team captain Vladimir Vujasinović stated "thank you for being there for us in hard times, you gave us the strength to go all the way and win the gold medal. I am proud of you, my country and all my people," and displayed the traditional three-finger Serbian salute. Mateja Kežman flashed the three finger salute after he scored the goal, which brought Serbia and Montenegro to 2006 World Cup, in the decisive qualification match against Bosnia and Herzegovina in Belgrade. Vlade Divac is also known to have often shown the three-finger salute after wins and scores. More recently, Serbian tennis player Novak Đoković has shown the three-finger salute often after his victories.
Before the start of the UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying football match between Serbia and Italy held in Genoa on 12 October 2010, the Serbian national football team displayed the three-finger salute to their supporters.
- Hajdinjak, Marko. (2000) Yugoslavia – Dismantled and Plundered 1 THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL TRIBUNAL CASE NO. IT-94-1-T
- "Tri prsta za pobedu" (in Serbian). Večernje novosti. 2007-11-17.
- Tri Srbije?. B92 Editorial. 10 October 2002.
- "- Lepo ste se toga setili! Podignuta tri prsta jesu simbol koji je u masovnu upotrebu uveo Vuk Drašković na mitingu u Beogradu 13. marta 1991. godine. Tada je SPO imala tri zahteva, a jedan od njih je bio da se puste svi pohapšeni 9. marta. To je bio naš simbol borbe za promene, a iako je trebalo dosta vremena da se taj simbol prihvati, očigledno je da je uspelo. I kada ga danas koriste radikali, nemam ništa protiv – kaže Srećković.. Three fingers are a symbol that was introduced by Vuk Drašković during demonstrations in Belgrade on 13 March 1991. Serbian Renewal Movement had three demands, and one of them was to release all people arrested for 9 March. That was our symbol of fight for change, although it took a lot of time for that symbol to be adopted it is clearly now adopted. I don't mind Serbian Radicals using it today" – says Srećković.  from Kurir
- Ni supruga lidera SPO, Danica Drašković, nije bila ništa manje zatečena radikalskim preokretom. Najpre je kroz osmeh konstatovala: "Neka, neka, uskoro će početi i da uzvikuju i "svi, svi, svi", pa dodala da "nema ništa protiv toga da i radikali mašu sa tri prsta". – The wife of SPO's leader, Danica Drašković, was not less surprised by the Radical's turnaround (usage of salute). She firstly said: "That's alright, everybody will soon start shouting "all, all, all" and said that she "doesn't mind that the Radicals use three fingers salute".  from Kurir
-  from Kurir
- Victoria Advocate. 3 July 2001.
- Bujosevic & Radovanovic. The Fall of Milosevic. pp. 127–128.
- Pincom.info: Tajni znakovi Eurosonga: Kome je Marija podigla tri prsta?
- Georg Cederskog. "Schlagertävlingen hotar bli politiserad", Dagens Nyheter 13 May 2007. Retrieved 13 March 2011.
- Serbernas riksförbund i Sverige et al. "'Missförstå inte våra serbiska tre fingrar'", Aftonbladet, 17 May 2007. Retrieved 14 September 2011.
- "Nepoželjna "tri prsta" u hrvatskoj izbornoj kampanji" (in Serbian). RTS. 2007-11-16.
- Prisoners of War by Sports Illustrated
- Swimming-Serbia's water polo team get heroes' welcome by Reuters on 2 August 2005
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