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“My permanent fight to preserve the peace, prevent the war and decrease the sufferings of everyone regardless of religion were an exemplary effort deserving respect rather than persecution.”

–Radovan Karadzic to Balkan Insight, ahead of his March 24, 2016 Guilty verdict

“Through relentless propaganda efforts, “Srebrenica” has become a synonym for “genocide,” as Serbs stand accused of killing some 7,000 Muslim men – military personnel who refused to surrender – who fled the town. The fact that they gave safe passage, food, and water to the women and children left behind – hardly a hallmark of “genocide” – is ignored.”

Nebojsa Malic, 2005

If one thinks that the 40-year sentence handed down last month to former Bosnian-Serb president Radovan Karadzic has nothing to do with oneself or with our collective future, then one hasn’t been paying attention. Not that anyone thinks about it one way or the other. Certainly not Americans in the throes of a presidential election year, and so who would bother paying attention to the fate of some former president, from some other, unthought-about country, for something that happened 20 years ago? Never mind that the American co-president from that era may be our president again next year.

Fact is, the American election pales in relevance to what just happened, yet again, at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY).

The Karadzic verdict in March was preceded in February by the death from “unknown causes” of yet another Serb in Hague custody. (Belgrade’s requests for treatment leave for the ailing Zdravko Tolimir — whose trial saw two judges go off the reservation with dissenting opinions that devastate the evidence of “genocide” in Srebrenica — were ignored.) Three months earlier, in October, a defense witness for Ratko Mladic died suddenly at a Hague hotel. That’s without mentioning the other six, starting with Croatian-Serb mayor Slavko Dokmanovic in 1998 and the back-to-back deaths of Milan Babic and Slobodan Milosevic in 2006. If these events all seem somehow marginal, then one has somehow missed that we are all Serbs now. No less for finding ourselves at the mercy of the “migrants” in our midst, whom our governments are intent on risking our hides to make welcome.

For the Serbs were the designated white man, and the designated Christian, to be sacrificed for the greater Muslim good. And, we thought, for the greater Western good, given the appreciation that would surely come our way from the Muslim world for punishing the infidels who dared fight back. Symbiotically, while Yugoslavia was being targeted by jihad, it was also targeted by the New World Order, as a test case, with the Serbian nation marked for extinction as an identity. The death of the “nation-state” as such would follow, as we are now seeing.

There is a reason that America exempts itself from the jurisdiction of an international court (at least until Hillary Clinton becomes president again). The U.S. is concerned about the potential for political prosecutions. That is, show trials. Of American leaders, generals, servicemen, and so on. That’s understandable. But it is more than a little vile to exempt oneself from such an Orwellian institution — while exploiting those very characteristics of it against others, something that not one American politician speaks out against.

But back to Karadzic. A few headlines, for background:

Radovan Karadzic found guilty of genocide, sentenced to 40 years

Radovan Karadzic, nicknamed the “Butcher of Bosnia,” was sentenced to 40 years….over his responsibility for the Srebrenica massacre, in which more than 7,000 [sic] Bosnian Muslim men and boys were executed [sic] by Bosnian Serb forces under his command…Prosecutor Serge Brammertz said in a statement that the verdict and sentence “will stand against continuing attempts at denying the suffering of thousands and the crimes committed in the former Yugoslavia.”

Note here that the prosecutor has let slip the real, political purpose of the trial: to preclude “genocide denial” vis-a-vis the still-not-established facts of Srebrenica. And he has carefully worded the much bandied-about “genocide” as general “suffering of thousands,” something no one has ever denied. The rest of the CNN excerpt:

…In a statement, the tribunal said it found Karadzic had committed the crimes through his participation in four “joint criminal enterprises,” including an overarching plot from October 1991 to November 1995 “to permanently remove Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats from Bosnian Serb-claimed territory.”

The Croatian government hailed the verdicts Thursday — which came at the end of an eight-year trial — as welcome but long overdue, calling them “the minimum, for which the victims and their families unfortunately waited too long.” […]

In contrast, a verdict that wasn’t so hailed by Croatia came a week later, when Serbian Radical Party leader Vojislav Seselj was uncharacteristically acquitted — after a 13-year stint in Hague custody during the proceedings — in a sort of balancing act the Court started practicing in recent years (when it noticed that people started noticing its Serb hunt). BBC on the Seselj verdict:

[P]residing Judge Jean-Claude Antonetti said the prosecution “had failed to prove…that there was a widespread and systematic attack against the non-Serb civilian population in large areas of Croatia and Bosnia. The evidence tendered and considered establishes instead that there was an armed conflict between enemy military forces with civilian components.”

Prosecutors had argued Mr Seselj was criminally responsible for the murder, torture and deportation of non-Serbs as part of his project to create a “Greater Serbia”. They had accused him of raising an army of volunteers who committed “unspeakable crimes”. But the trial chamber found that there was no “criminal purpose in sending volunteers” — and, moreover, they had not been under Mr Seselj’s command.

“The majority simply notes that it is not satisfied that the recruitment and subsequent deployment of volunteers implies that Vojislav Seselj knew of these crimes on the ground, or that he instructed or endorsed them,” it said.

The verdict also concluded that the “Greater Serbia” plan Mr Seselj had supported was not a “criminal”, but “political”, project.

Croatian Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic criticised the outcome as “a defeat for the Hague tribunal and the prosecution”.

More:

“This verdict is an embarrassment for the Hague Tribunal…” Oreskovic told media in the eastern Croatian town of Vukovar… “He’s the man who is burning the flags of Croatia and the EU,” Oreskovic said. [Said, mind you, without a hint of irony given not only the Yugo- and Serb-flag-burning that adorned Croatia’s secession, but also the sumptuous headlines that have been coming out of this “model EU member” in the past year alone (Wiesenthal Centre urges Croatia to end pensions to Nazi [veterans]; Wiesenthal Center Shocked by Appointment of Fascist Culture Minister Hasanbegovic; Croatia’s ‘Banal’ Fascism on Display at Israel Match; Croatia faces hardline sanctions over swastika etched on pitch; Croatians chant “Kill a Serb” at concert; and just this weekend: Monument to fascism victims [at site of biggest mass crime in Zagreb, Dotrscina forest] desecrated with fascist graffiti)]

[And] Bosnian lawyer Senad Pecanin called the verdict “scandalous”. […]

Not scandalous to Bosniaks, meanwhile — never mind their own butchers going free — was the guilty verdict in 2012 for the now dead Tolimir: “This is what we expected and we feel better now,” Srebrenica widow Rejha Avdic said. “We hope the court will continue to conduct fair trials.” One supposes the Not Guilty verdict in Seselj makes that trial “unfair.” (See Nebojsa Malic on the verdict: “Prisca Matimba Nyambe, a Zambian judge…calls out the other ‘judges’ for failing to prove even a single charge in the indictment. ‘Without a single piece of evidence adduced during this trial of a written [or stated] plan of a [Joint Criminal Enterprise] to Murder…the Majority relies upon circumstantial evidence to draw conclusions…I am wholly unpersuaded that the Accused is guilty of any of the charges alleged in the Indictment,’ she concluded…[T]he prosecutors — and the judges who sided with them — failed to prove that many of the things in the indictment actually happened, Nyambe argued.”)

More:

Croatia on Thursday banned Šešelj from entering the country after prime minister Tihomir Orešković labelled the verdict “shameful” during a visit to Vukovar, scene of some of the alleged atrocities, where he laid wreaths in memory of war dead.

Šešelj was not at the courtroom in The Hague to hear the verdict…He had been allowed to return to Serbia because of his deteriorating health [which prompted a bizarre letter to the UN Secretary-General from Croatia’s incoming president, saying the humanitarian release undermined the entire purpose of the tribunal]…[T]he ICTY judgment said the prosecution’s case had been full of “confusion” and that “a lot of the evidence shows that [his] collaboration was aimed at defending the Serbs and the traditionally Serb territories or at preserving Yugoslavia, not at committing the alleged crimes”. [Imagine that!]

In the majority ruling, the ICTY’s presiding judge, Jean-Claude Antonetti, said… “The totality of the evidence substantiates the fact that the purpose of sending volunteers was not to commit crimes, but to support the war effort…The [court] by a majority…was unable to find…that, in calling upon the Serbs to “cleanse” Bosnia…Vojislav Šešelj was calling for ethnic cleansing of Bosnia’s non-Serbs. […]

The fairer fate of this least likeable of Serb defendants is interesting. Seselj is an actual nationalist and actually was interested in a “Greater Serbia” — which none of the convicted or dead bigger fish (Karadzic, Milosevic etc) had been. It’s possible Seselj was earmarked for a counterweight purpose. Unlike Milosevic, he was a) allowed health leave; b) the judges acknowledged the prosecution was “full of confusion,” something that judges in the Milosevic trial never acknowledged despite the schizophrenic prosecution there, which had international journalists laughing in the aisles and the judges calling for order; c) the judges chose to also acknowledge here that the evidence pointed not to murderous intent but to war-related aims and preserving the union, despite this defendant actually using the word “cleanse” — which less fortunate Serb defendants never did; and d) here we finally get the ‘bombshell’ admission that, in any case, “Greater Serbia” isn’t a criminal project, but a political one.

Or perhaps Seselj just wasn’t high-profile enough for the crowd-pleasing purposes that other Serb convictions serve, and so the Court felt it could give this one to the Serbs, to show that this too can happen. I asked former Senate Republican foreign policy analyst Jim Jatras for his take on the Seselj acquittal that came a week after the Karadzic conviction. He replied:

My own guess:

1. Springing Seselj shows ICTY’s fairness and impartiality, so that convicting other Serbs (notably Mladic and Karadzic) and exonerating Muslims (Oric, Ceku, Haradinaj, Thaci) is all the more “credible.”
2. Seselj is the perfect candidate to be the “Exhibit A” of “fairness towards Serbs,” since (a) there’s no evidence against him anyway, (b) he’s already “served” many years of a non-sentence for not doing anything, and (c) releasing him “back into the wild” in Serbia will make life difficult and interesting for other politicians, rendering them even more pliable (if that’s possible) [to Brussels and Washington demands].

An even more soberly cynical take came in an email from longtime Hague observer Andy Wilcoxson (links added):

[Serbian state security chiefs Jovica] Stanisic and [Franko] Simatovic were acquitted too, then the prosecutor appealed the verdict — and now the Tribunal is going to put them on trial all over again (double jeopardy). The same thing could happen to Seselj; they could drag this out forever.

If the Tribunal had convicted Seselj, it’s unlikely that they could have sentenced him to more than time served. By acquitting him, they open the door for the prosecutor to appeal the verdict and conduct a double jeopardy trial…I’m not a big fan of Seselj. He describes himself as a Serbian nationalist and he openly espouses the idea of greater Serbia. His party published the “Protocols of Zion,” which was banned by Slobodan Milosevic’s government because it promotes antisemitism.

That said, the charges against him were idiotic. The Serbian Radical Party was in the opposition for the duration of the wars in Croatia and Bosnia. Seselj and the Serbian Radical Party recruited volunteers to join the Bosnian-Serb and Krajina-Serb armed forces….As the president of an opposition political party, Seselj didn’t have the authority to issue orders to anyone. Nor did he he have the responsibility or power to punish anyone who committed war crimes…because the police and the courts didn’t answer to him.

He did make nationalistic speeches and he did make inflammatory statements during the war. He continues to do that to this very day, but that isn’t a crime nor should it be one. Freedom of speech is a fundamental right.

Wilcoxson also allows for the possibility that some sort of deal was struck between Washington/Brussels and the West-subordinated Serbian government. “A deal is possible,” he continued in a follow-up email. “The ICTY would have convicted Seselj if that was what they wanted to do. Not having sufficient evidence to convict has never stopped them from convicting anyone before — especially not a Serb. If he doesn’t hold up his end of the deal they can always grant the prosecutor’s appeal.”

(Or even if he does hold up his end of the deal, as Milosevic and Karadzic found out.)

Malic foreshadowed as much in 2013 (second link added):

The indictment and conviction [e.g. of Croatian, Bosniak, and Kosovo-Albanian defendants] are supposed to create the impression the ICTY is a real, impartial, legitimate court of law — which is then followed by a release on appeal. …Furthermore, as a fellow blogger pointed out, the ICTY has a habit of prosecuting only the alleged crimes against the designated victim groups. Hence, Serbs and (Bosnian) Croats get the (ICTY-written) book thrown at them for killing (Bosnian) Muslims, the few KLA are punished only for killing fellow Albanians, while no one ever gets punished for killing Serbs.

Back to Karadzic, and another telling choice of words, from Reuters:

“[T]hese harrowing images reveal the reasons why he was found guilty of the 1995 massacre and nine other war crimes.” –Gemma Mullin, UK Mirror, March 24, 2016

Think about that sentence a moment. There’s not even an attempt to disguise how international “justice” for the Balkans has worked. The judicial standard is, ‘Why was he convicted? Just look at the pictures.’ Images say he’s guilty, the evidence is irrelevant. A blatant, undisguised appeal to emotion. And they’re saying it themselves: It’s all an image war, Folks, a PR war. The court of public opinion is what counts here, based on inflammatory images devoid of context including the other belligerent’s suffering. Just as they did to secure the war itself, media shoved images in the public’ face to “explain” the verdict, and reinforce what we were told originally.

The images that The Mirror wanted you to base your opinion on, (from the above excerpted article), without mentioning that the trial found some of this bloodshed came from the victims’ own Muslim ranks:





Apparently, we’re still supposed to be moved and even outraged by Muslim suffering. Or, at the very least, be more understanding of their violence directed at us. (Indeed, who is more fanatical — Muslims, or the Westerners who, even as Muslims mow them down, are determined to put Serbs away for life?)

Below, some images you’re *not* supposed to see. Of dead Serbs, which would have only confused the tidy picture being peddled:

Tangentially, here was one of the “read more” links in that Mirror article: “Read more: Taunt of the ‘Butcher’: Former Bosnian Serb general makes throat-slit gesture at his war crimes trial“. It’s another illustration of the West’s immunity to correction when it comes to the Balkans; that the hazy incident happened at all was questionable enough that the AP issued a correction, at my prompting, when it could find no documentation that it took place.

That the ICTY is a political rather than judicial construct is illustrated by a decision that was timed as breathtakingly as the March 24th date of the Karadzic verdict. After a genocide charge (in a set of seven municipalities) was dropped from Karadzic’s trial in the summer of 2012 (”a setback for reconciliation!” the chorus repeated), it was reinstated a year later — announced on July 11, the same date that Srebrenica is commemorated. So dates are sometimes chosen as much to please Muslims as they are to beat up Serbs:

Radovan Karadžić genocide charge reinstated by UN judges (The Guardian, July 11, 2013)

Appeals judges at the United Nations’ Yugoslav war crimes tribunal have reinstated a genocide charge against Radovan Karadžić linked to a campaign of killing and mistreating non-Serbs at the start of the Bosnian war in 1992. The decision reversed the former Bosnian Serb president’s acquittal last year on one of the two genocide charges he faces, but it does not amount to a conviction.

The ruling in The Hague came on the day survivors gathered in Srebrenica to mark the 18th anniversary of the massacre by reburying 409 recently identified sets of remains exhumed from mass graves. […]

In the end, Karadzic was acquitted of, very specifically, “genocide” in the seven municipalities, and only on that count. Srebrenica, on the other hand, is still being asserted as genocide. Without any evidence of intent (in fact, plenty of evidence to the contrary, from the evacuation itself to the explicit orders to not harm civilians and to observe all the laws), and without even a precise number of victims and their causes of death. It’s easy to get confused, however, especially with sentences like this one from an October 2012 Toronto Sun article (emphasis added): “During the trial of Bosnian Serb General Stanislav Galic, the tribunal established that Bosnian Serb forces were responsible for shelling the market place.”

The key word there is that the tribunal “established.” In fact, as with a “genocide” per se happening in Srebrenica, what the tribunal does is not ‘establish’ anything so much as ‘assert’ (Western media consistently dodge the distinction). After the ICTY asserts, the other UN court, the International Court of Justice (ICJ), adopts the assertions, and the institutions are then cited by the Bosniak lobby and wider Muslim mafia as having both “found,” for example, that genocide took place. The “findings” are then duly parroted by governments and media.

There are yet more strands to the M.O. of the Hague-Media-Government Axis. Retired Canadian ambassador James Bissett — who, before Karadzic ever said it, said that Karadzic “did his damnedest to prevent the war” — told me years ago that at the Milosevic trial (2002-2005), he observed NY Times correspondent Marlise Simons lifting her pen only when testimony correlated with the approved version of events. That is, not during the countless bombshells that came out in that trial chamber. And so it has gone with the media in general, something I got a taste of in the early 2000s, when the new New York Sun — revived ostensibly as a thinking “alternative” to The Times — deigned to broach the Balkans. It did so exactly when a set of inflammatory images of dead Muslims was being circulated to coincide with some narrative-reinforcing development in the Milosevic trial. Much the way the Court circulated a video of the execution of six Bosniak soldiers in 2005 (timed to the 10th anniversary of Srebrenica), something that all media including the “alternative” Fox News obliged in looping, no less as supposed “proof” of “genocide,” of “8,000.”

Below is an excerpt from Diana Johnstone, author of the new Hillary Clinton book Queen of Chaos, from her recent take on the seven-year Karadzic trial. It rounds out several aforementioned points:

The media stayed away from the marathon, and only showed up to report the inevitable “guilty” verdict condemning the bad guy. The verdict reads a bit like, “they said, he said, and we believe them not him.”

The most amazing passage in the rambling verdict by Judge O-Gon Kwan consists of these throw-away lines:

“With respect to the Accused’s argument that the Bosnian Muslim side targeted its own civilians, the Chamber accepts that the Bosnian Muslim side was intent on provoking the international community to act on its behalf and, as a result, at times, engaged in targeting UN personnel in the city or opening fire on territory under its control in order to lay blame on the Bosnian Serbs.”

This is quite extraordinary. The ICTY judges are actually acknowledging that the Bosnian Muslim side engaged in “false flag” operations, not only targeting UN personnel but actually “opening fire on territory under its control”. Except that that should read, “opening fire on civilians under its control”. UN peace keeping officers have insisted for years that the notorious Sarajevo “marketplace massacres”, which were blamed on the Serbs and used to gain condemnation of the Serbs in the United Nations [which led to bombing them], were actually carried out by the Muslim side in order to gain international support.

This is extremely treacherous behavior. The Muslim side was, as stated, “intent on provoking the international community to act on its behalf”, and it succeeded! The ICTY is living proof of that success: a tribunal set up to punish Serbs. But there has been no move to expose and put on trial Muslim leaders responsible for their false flag operations.

The Judge quickly brushed this off: “However, the evidence indicates that the occasions on which this happened pale in significance when compared to the evidence relating to [Bosnian Serb] fire on the city” (Sarajevo).

How can such deceitful attacks “pale in significance” when they cast doubt precisely on the extent of Bosnian Serb “fire on the city”?

[The ICTY] imported from US criminal justice the concept of a “Joint Criminal Enterprise (JCE)”, used originally as a means to indict gangsters. The trick is to identify the side we are against as a JCE, which makes it possible to accuse anyone on that side of being a member of the JCE.

After Slovenia and Croatia broke away from Yugoslavia, the Muslims and Croats of Bosnia voted to secede from Yugoslavia, but this was opposed by Bosnian Serbs who claimed it was unconstitutional. The European Union devised a compromise that would allow each of the three people self-rule in its own territory. However, the Muslim leader, Alija Izetbegovic, was encouraged by the United States to renege on the compromise deal, in the hope that Muslims, as the largest group, could control the whole territory. War thus broke out in April 1992.

Now, if you asked the Bosnian Serbs what their war aims were, they would answer that they wanted to preserve the independence of Serb territory within Bosnia rather than become a minority in a State ruled by the Muslim majority…However, according to ICTY the objective of the Serbian mini-republic was to “permanently remove Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats from Serb-claimed territory … through the crimes charged”, described as the “Overarching Joint Criminal Enterprise”, leading to several subsidiary JCEs…The problem here is not that such crimes [expulsions] did not take place – they did – but that they were part of an “overarching civil war” with crimes committed by the forces of all three sides. If anything is a “joint criminal enterprise”, I should think that plotting and carrying out false flag operations should qualify…One of the subsidiary JCEs attributed to Karadzic was the fact that between late May and mid-June of 1995, Bosnian Serb troops fended off threatened NATO air strikes by taking some 200 UN peacekeepers and military observers hostage. It is hard to see why this temporary defensive move, which caused no physical harm, is more of a “Joint Criminal Enterprise” than the fact of having “[lethally] targeted UN personnel”, as the Muslim side did.

Many well informed Western and Muslim witnesses testify to the fact that the Serb takeover [of Srebrenica] was the unexpected result of finding the town undefended. This makes the claim that this was a well planned crime highly doubtful…ICTY’s constant bias (it refused to investigate NATO bombing of civilian targets in Serbia in 1999, and acquitted notorious anti-Serb Bosnian and Kosovo Albanian killers) drastically reduces its credibility.

ICTY reiterated its earlier judgment that the “killings demonstrate a clear intent to kill every able-bodied Bosnian Muslim male from Srebrenica. Noting that killing every able-bodied male of a group results in severe procreative implications that may lead to the group’s extinction, the Chamber finds that the only reasonable inference is that members of the Bosnian Serb Forces orchestrating this operation intended to destroy the Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica as such.” In other words, even though women and children were spared, Srebrenica was a unique genocide, due to the “severe procreative implications” of a lack of men…This judgment is widely accepted without being critically examined. Since wars have traditionally involved deliberately killing men on the enemy side, with this definition, “genocide” comes close to being synonymous with war.

As if to make a point, the verdict was announced on the 17th anniversary of the start of NATO bombing of what was left of Yugoslavia, in order to detach Kosovo from Serbia. Just a reminder that it’s not enough for the Serbs to lose the war, they must be criminalized as well.

The verdict is political and its effects are political. First of all, it helps dim the prospects of future peace and reconciliation in the Balkans. Serbs readily admit that war crimes were committed when Bosnian Serb forces killed prisoners in Srebrenica. If Muslims had to face the fact that crimes were also committed by men fighting on their side, this could be a basis for the two peoples to deplore the past and seek a better future together. As it is, the Muslims are encouraged to see themselves as pure victims, while the Serbs feel resentment at the constant double standards. Muslim groups constantly stress that no verdict can possibly assuage their suffering – an attitude that actually feeds international anti-Western sentiment among Muslims. […]

The final recurring theme that I’ll mention here seems to be prosecution documents that don’t make their way to Serb defendants. On March 23rd, the day before the verdict was due, Karadzic defense attorney Peter Robinson tweeted:

@PeterRobinICTY
Just rec’d 208 pages of exculpatory material in #Karadzic case from #ICTY prosecution this afternoon. Seriously, prosecutors?

This recalls a May 17, 2012 item, which the UK Mirror headlined “War Crimes Trial Blunder: Butcher of Bosnia’s genocide case halted after prosecutors’ error“:

The man dubbed the Butcher of Bosnia Ratko Mladic had his war crimes trial dramatically suspended today…because prosecutors failed to disclose thousands of documents to his defence.

Just another “blunder.” And notice how they still can’t seem to decide which one — Mladic or Karadzic — to dub “Butcher of Bosnia,” and so they split it between the two, sometimes calling one “Butcher of the Balkans” and the other “Butcher of Bosnia,” and sometimes applying one or both titles to Milosevic as well, when they remember about him. Also be on the lookout for facts eventually admitted by the Court (such as the Muslim side shelling its own civilians), to continue being reported as outlandish ravings by a desperate despot in denial. (For example, Reuters reporter Thomas Escritt’s “Karadzic denies Bosnia war crimes as he starts defence” was written in 2012, but the Islamic self-bombing that Karadzic claims and the report scoffs at will continue to be attributed to the mere defendants and not as the (reluctant) findings in his case.)

In addition to the Karadzic conviction doing its part for the general goal of justifying the 1990s Western policies and NATO operations that catalyzed worldwide jihad, it also had a more specific endgame, as outlined by Dr. Srdja Trifkovic last month:

Karadzic Sentencing Designed to ‘Delegitimize’ Republika Srpska (SputnikNews.com, Chronicles Magazine, March 26, 2016)

We are going to see the use of this verdict as another building bloc in the political case for the dismantling of the Dayton Agreement, signed in the fall of 1995, which recognized the Republika Srpska as a semi-autonomous entity within Bosnia-Herzegovina. This will be used, together with some previous verdicts, as justification for a sustained attempt to delegitimize its existence and to claim that — having verified the guilt of Karadzic — it is now time to look for another arrangement for the future of Bosnia-Herzegovina as a more or less unitarized state — in which, by virtue of their members, the Muslims will have predominance.

…The whole show at The Hague Tribunal has the task of providing legal justification for the decisions made by the Western powers in the 1990’s…a tribunal with a clear brief to prove Serbian guilt, as retroactive justification for political decisions made at the time.

…It is up to the Russians in particular to consider the implications of the quasi-legal proceedings at The Hague as a sword of Damocles that can be used against anyone who is politically inconvenient to the powers-that-be, such as the Donbas leaders today or Bashar al-Assad tomorrow.

… For as long as we have [a] political agenda, and in particular the pernicious doctrine of collective command responsibility — the so-called “joint criminal conspiracy [enterprise]” — anyone connected with a political structure that is inconvenient to the Western powers can be criminalized.

It is not a matter of committing real war crimes; it is a matter of collective guilt because you do not belong to the right side of history. In that sense, The Hague is even more politicized than the Moscow processes of 1936-1938.

Attesting to this dynamic was the Nov. 2012 conviction-reversal of two top Croatian generals who had led a homicidal and stated ethnic cleansing campaign against the Serbs of Krajina — just in time to clear NATO member Croatia’s legal slate for its 2013 EU entry. Jatras in November 2012:

[T]o claim guilt on the basis of a “joint criminal enterprise” (JCE) where there is no direct evidence of the accused’s personal participation in a crime does have its legal problems. That said, the fact that the clearing of the Krajinas was a JCE — that its intention was precisely to uproot the Serbian population — is well attested, including by [Croatian wartime president Franjo] Tudjman’s own words. Certainly far better attested than anything that can be demonstrated regarding, say, Srebrenica or Kosovo, where the proof of the JCE is entirely lacking….In short, there’s no way decently to dismiss JCE basis for Croat defendants (much less Muslims and the oh-so-righteous jihad) while rubber-stamping Serb convictions based on JCE.

This only shows that the purpose of ICTY was to criminalize the Serbs and their aspirations as such, netting such individuals as needed…while legitimating those of the Croats and, especially, Muslims (including Albanians).

So the merry game of rock, paper, scissors continues. Serbs are uniformly guilty. Muslims are uniformly innocent. Croats are guilty if their victims are Muslim, innocent if their victims are Serbs.

And this is all without even mentioning the tribunal’s legitimacy to begin with, as Nebojsa Malic reminded us the day after the Karadzic verdict:

The Hague is not bringing peace, reconciliation or closure — but a cynical victor’s justice, an endorsement of ‘might makes right.’ …The very purpose of the ad-hoc tribunal, a brainchild of the Clinton administration’s “human rights interventionists,” was to deny any legal legitimacy to the Serbs, while bestowing it on the US and its regional clients and proxies.

… Yes, [the tribunal] was established…under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, allowing the creation of “measures to maintain or restore international peace and security.” The very inception of the ICTY required stretching the definition of “measures” to include judicial power the UNSC clearly lacked — and therefore could not delegate.

Even if the tribunal were perfectly legitimate to begin with, its pattern of indictments should have been a signal something was amiss. The ICTY and its backers clearly believed any Serb atrocities were systematic and deliberate, while those committed by anyone else were random or incidental. While every single senior Serb official in present-day Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia was hauled before the court, only a few lower-level Croat, Bosnian Muslim or Albanian officials were even indicted — and most of them were acquitted outright, or on appeal. Only Serbs were charged with genocide — by definition, a systematic crime. Only Serbs were accused of a “joint criminal enterprise,” a category specifically constructed for the tribunal by a US jurist. [The gracious contribution of Pittsburgh law professor John Cencich, a Croat-American.]

“NATO countries are those that have provided the finance to set up the Tribunal, we are amongst the majority financiers… so let me assure that we and the Tribunal are all one on this, we want to see war criminals brought to justice and I am certain that when Justice [Louise] Arbour goes to Kosovo and looks at the facts, she will be indicting people of Yugoslav nationality and I don’t anticipate any others at this stage,” NATO spokesman Jamie Shea told reporters on May 17, 1999. Telling enough?

The Dayton-dismantling tool that the Court provides, meanwhile, is understood well enough by Serbian politicians — even those who play ball with the West and shamefully, finally acquiesced this year to formal NATO cooperation:

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic — who organised a protest rally in 2008 when Karadzic was sent to The Hague — warned on Thursday prior to the verdict that he will not allow the UN court’s verdict to be used to undermine Republika Srpska.

“I warn those who think they can use today’s verdict against the former president of Repubika Srpska for a political or any other kind of attack on Republika Srpska, that in line with Dayton agreement, Serbia cannot, should not and will not allow that,” Vucic said.

A mouse warning a snake. So far, it’s only ever ended one way.

The quote came from a Balkan Insight article titled “Serbian Nationalists Rally Against NATO, Karadzic Verdict“:

Commenting on the verdict, Seselj said that Karadzic “was convicted…because he is [a] Serb who found himself at a decisive and historic moment at the head of Republika Srpska”.

Seselj slammed the Serbian government for agreeing to cooperate with NATO’s Support and Procurement Organisation.

“Those who were bombing us in 1999, who were killing our children, those criminals from NATO, have now got the right voted in by parliament to walk freely across Serbia,” Seselj said.

The cooperation agreement with NATO “guarantees diplomatic immunity and freedom of movement through Serbia for NATO troops,” RT explained. “The troops are to uphold peace and stability in the region in exchange.” That part of the agreement is surely a punch line, as one protester’s words illustrate:

“We think it is hypocrisy to say that NATO will guarantee stability and security to our people in Kosovo and Metohija,” Milica Djurdjevic, spokeswoman for Zavetnici (Oath Keepers), the right-wing Serbian party that organized Sunday’s protest, said.

“Kosovo has had a NATO base for years now. And despite their presence, Serbs were persecuted, some [most] of our holiest and oldest monasteries were burnt, our houses were burnt and people were expelled from their homes.”

She also accused the alliance of breeding global problems [e.g. terrorism and migration] instead of solving them.

“I think what Nato did by bombing Serbia actually precipitated the exodus of the Kosovo Albanians into Macedonia and Montenegro. I think the bombing did cause ethnic cleansing. The whole business in the Balkans has been mismanaged from the start. It was obvious it was going to blow up.”

–Former British Foreign Secretary and NATO Secretary-General Lord (Peter) Carrington, Saga Magazine, Aug. 27, 1999

“Never before have so few lied so thoroughly to so many, as in connection with the Kosovo war.”

–Former Bundestag Member Willy Wimmer, 1999

“I was just a child in 1999 when NATO was destroying my country without any real basis. I swore to myself that I would defeat that same world in my own way and here I am today. That destruction did not destroy me, nor my people. They did not break our soul and we are yet joyful despite our problems. That is victory.”

–Novak Djokovic, March 24, 2016, via Opanak (Facebook)

“Some Serb paramilitary groups caused many sleepless nights to both Mladić and Karadžić. Not all of them were helpful and welcome. Some of them included even criminal elements, psychopaths. The others treated the Croat or Muslim civilians too heavy-handedly, but it could be understood to some extent, but not permitted, [particularly] if some of them had seen their families assassinated by the Muslims or the Croats. President Karadžić issued many orders to protect Muslims from those irregulars. I have seen many relevant documents about it. On the other [hand], some Serb paramilitaries helped a lot the unprepared and undefended Serb settlements that had been at the beginning an easy prey to the organized and trained Croat and Muslim bands, e.g., in northern and eastern Bosnia.”

–Czech university professor Rajko Dolecek, in an account of some conversations with Ratko Mladic, posted Dec. 16, 2009

“I did everything in human power to avoid the war. I succeeded in reducing the suffering of all civilians. I proclaimed numerous unilateral ceasefires and military containment. And I stopped our army many times when they were close to victory.”

–Radovan Karadzic, Opening Defense Statement, Oct. 16, 2012

******UPDATE******

It seems that just this past December another witness — a protected witness in the Mladic trial — testified that the marketplace bombing, specifically in February 1994, was not only perpetrated by the Muslim side, but ordered by President Izetbegovic himself. The item below is from Balkan Insight, Dec. 16, 2015, and notice the word choice in the headline “Mladic Witness Claims,” as opposed to the more commonly used (when reporting from judicial settings) “testifies.” Notice also the integral role played by a certain West-beloved cleric named Ceric. And for the first time, we have names offered up of the actual men behind the attack: Mladic Witness Claims Bosniaks Staged Market Attack

Protected witness GRM-116, who testified in Mladic’s defence at the Hague Tribunal on Tuesday, claimed that the attack on the market that killed 66 civilians in February 1994 was approved by the then Bosnian president Alija Izetbegovic.

The witness said that as a member of the Biseri special security unit from 1992 to 1994, he worked on security at the Bosnian presidency building.

He said that during that time he could hear what Izetbegovic and others said during meetings.

According to the witness, Izetbegovic’s main goal was to ensure Western intervention to help the Bosniaks “by creating mass suffering in Sarajevo and Srebrenica”.

He said that Izetbegovic was heavily influenced by Islamic community leader Mustafa Ceric. According to the witness, Ceric convinced Izetbegovic that “losses must be suffered”.

Speaking about the attack on the Markale market, GRM-116 testified that was “Ceric’s idea, which was carried out by generals Sefer Halilovic and Mustafa Hajrulahovic, alias ‘the Italian’”.

“I was there when Alija [Izetbegovic] approved this,” he said.

At the next meeting, the witness said that Halilovic reported the first attempt was a failure because the mortar hit the roof of the market.

“Alija told them to try again. They went and soon we heard what happened with Markale,” he said.

Izetbegovic, who died in 2003, said after the attack that it was a “black and terrible day for the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina”.

As commander of the Bosnian Serb Army, Ratko Mladic is charged with terrorising the population of Sarajevo during wartime with a campaign of shelling and sniping.

According to the charges, the mortar which killed 66 citizens at the Markale market on February 5, 1994 was fired from Bosnian Serb positions. […]

******UPDATE******

In another recent example of categorizing things that go the Bosniaks’ way as “fair,” professional Srebrenica widow Munira Subasic reacted last June when Switzerland gave precedence to a Bosnian warrant over a Serbian one for Srebrenica warlord Naser Oric, tormentor of fellow Muslims and killer of Serbs: “This is the only fair decision.” (In the Reuters item that carried it, one couldn’t help noticing that Oric was referred to with the innocuous word “defender” of the town, in an all too Balkans-typical grafting by Western press of one side’s self-serving terminology.)

Restaurant honours mass murderer (Herald Sun, April 13, 2008)

An acclaimed Melbourne restaurant has sparked multi-ethnic outrage for paying homage to a fascist warlord and mass murderer.

The plush Katarina Zrinski restaurant attached to Footscray’s Croatian Club has been branded “disgusting” for its celebration of genocidal World War II Croatian leader Ante Pavelic.

Pavelic, who historians say was responsible for the deaths of up to 500,000 Jews, Serbs, Muslims and gypsies, has been described as the Heinrich Himmler of the Croatian nation.

The popular restaurant during the week displayed a big portrait of Pavelic on its wall and T-shirts depicting Pavelic for sale at the bar.

The T-shirts also showed two commanders of the Ustashe’s notorious Black Legion, which murdered thousands of civilians, and Cardinal Alojzije Stepinac, who was jailed for collaborating with the Ustashe.

Drinkers at the bar were also toasting “The Poglavnik” - the name fascists use for their Fuhrer - and on Thursday the restaurant commemorated Hitler’s establishment of the puppet state of Croatia on April 10, 1941.

On Tuesday the restaurant was reviewed in a Melbourne newspaper’s food section, with its “large, airy downstairs dining room perfect for large, extended family groups”.

Dr Bob Miller, a Balkans expert at the Australian National University, has hit out at the club’s feting of Pavelic.

“It’s disgusting. This would be the equivalent to the German community honouring Himmler,” he said.

“Even the Nazis found the Ustashe regime’s actions so brutal as to be counter-productive.”

Serbians in Victoria have also expressed their distress.

“How can they do this?” George Marinkovic, publisher of the Serb Voice, said.

“Can someone explain this? We are in one beautiful country and you are going back and promoting fascists from the Hitler era. I cannot understand it.”

Dr Colin Rubinstein, executive director of the Australia/Israel & Jewish Affairs Council, said: “While it is entirely understandable that Croatian Australians would want to celebrate the self-determination of modern democratic Croatia [as if it’s not the direct legacy of WWII Croatia], to celebrate a fascist World War II Nazi puppet state and its war criminal leader is totally contrary to the norms of multicultural Australia and should be condemned by Australians committed to a tolerant, diverse and democratic society.”

Club president Tony Juric acknowledged the restaurant honoured Pavelic, but said the leader had nothing to do with the Nazis.

“What the Nazis did was a disgrace and we had nothing to do with that,” he said. “I have never received one letter of complaint from a Jewish or a Serb organisation.”

One is left too speechless after that last line to offer intelligent commentary. But to echo Dr. Miller, it was the Nazis who ultimately wanted nothing to do with the Ustashe, as the latter were far too brutal.

Serb returnees, priest under attack in Croatia (B92, Tanjug, March 23, 2008)

ZADAR, ZAGREB — Ethnic Serbs in the vicinity of Zadar, in Croatia, have once again been targeted Saturday. Unknown perpetrators broke into and robbed a house in the village of Ceranje Donje near Benkovac. The house, which belongs to late Gojko Čubrilo, and is now used by his daughter Ksenija J., both Serb returnees, was then vandalized. The attackers also spilled some 500 liters of wine from the barrels inside the house. Beside this incident, Croatian MUP in Zadar also said a car belonging to Orthodox Serb priest Ljubomir Crnorak was stoned in Benkovac, when all the windows on the vehicle were smashed.

The Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC) Dalmatian Eparchy condemned the incidents, and said the priest’s vehicle likely came under attack because of false allegations, printed in a local newspaper, that Crnorak “had erased the Croatian coat of arms from his license plates”.

The vice-president of the Independent Democratic Serb Party (SDSS) in Croatia, Milorad Pupovac, also condemned the attacks, which happened in his native village, where six returnee houses were vandalized last year.

Some 250,000 Serbs were ethnically cleansed from Croatia during Operation Storm in the summer of 1995. Official Croatian government data says that 50,000 of them have since returned.

Serb Basketball Fans Hurt in Croatia (Balkan Insight, Jutarnji list, Tanjug, March 17, 2008)

Five Serbian citizens were beaten up while taking a break at a service station in Croatia, local media reported Monday.

The five, fans of the Vojvodina basketball team, were driving in a car with Serbian plates on their way back from Split where they had attended a match between Serbia’s Vojvodina and Croatia’s Split basketball teams.

They had stopped to rest in Dobra in central Croatia early Sunday when they were attacked by a group of masked people.

Croatian police confirmed the incident. The Jutarnji list daily said no one was seriously injured but other sources reported that two were hospitalized while other three suffered minor injuries.

(If the victims had traveled in order to cheer the Vojvodina team, there’s a good chance that, ironically, they were ethnic Hungarian citizens of Serbia, another group that’s looking for a piece of Serbia for itself. But all it took to get hurt was a Serbian license plate.)

On this very weekend in 2008, we also saw the following Croatian epiphany:

Croatian Breakthrough: This Year, Let’s Not Give Less Money to the Holocaust Memorial than to the Memorial for the Nazis who Killed People There

Oh but here’s post-EU Croatia:

Wiesenthal Centre urges Croatia to end pensions to Nazi [veterans] (AFP, May 19, 2015) (It’s actually a double pension, according to the article above, enacted within two years of Croatia starting its secession war.)

And full-circling back to this week, from Jerusalem Post, by Simon Wiesenthal’s Efraim Zuroff, April 13, 2016:

…Earlier this week, Croatian army veterans (of the war of the Nineties against Yugoslavia) of the Ninth Division gathered to celebrate their unit’s 25th anniversary, but also to mark the 75th anniversary of the establishment of the Independent State of Croatia (NDH) which was governed by the fascist Ustasha movement and pursued genocidal policies against Serbs, Jews and Roma. The veterans’ call to legalize the Ustasha salute of “za dom spremni” (the Croatian equivalent of the Nazis’ “sieg heil”) is an attempt to legitimize the murderous policies of the NDH and whitewash that regime’s crimes.

Another typical initiative, but one which is much more dangerous, is a new documentary movie entitled Jasenovac-Istina (Jasenovac - The Truth), which had its world premiere this past February 28 in Israel, of all places, most probably to help deflect potential criticism of its highly controversial content. Jasenovac, which was established in August 1941, was the largest of the concentration camps created by the Ustasha regime of the NDH in order to rid their country of its minority populations, as well as their Croatian political opponents…

…[T]he film claims that Jasenovac was actually only a labor/concentration camp, not one at which there was any attempt to commit genocide of any sort, and that the number of Ustasha victims there was less than the number of innocent people murdered by the Yugoslav partisans after the war on the same site. In other words, it was the Communists who set up a “death camp” in Jasenovac, not the Ustasha, a totally unsubstantiated claim without any hard evidence to back it up.

…In addition, the film accuses former Croatian presidents Mesic and Josipovic, both known for their opposition to fascism and Ustasha nostalgia, as well as several left-wing journalists, of keeping alive the [”]Communist myth[”] of Jasenovac, and covering up the full truth about postwar Communist crimes. Needless to say, recently-appointed Croatian Minister of Culture Zlatko Hasanbegovic, who is well known for his support for right-wing causes, was quick to praise the film. [See Wiesenthal Center Shocked by Appointment in Croatia of Fascist Culture Minister Hasanbegovic and Calls for his Immediate Replacement, Feb. 5.]

Given these circumstances, the Serb and Jewish communities, along with the Croatian anti-fascist organizations, have decided to boycott the official government memorial ceremony annually held at Jasenovac on April 22. Instead, the Jewish community announced that it would hold its own memorial ceremony a week earlier on April 15, as a form of protest against the government’s failure to act against the revival of fascism and anti-Semitism in the public sphere.

The only good news in that respect these days was a declaration by both the Croatian president and prime minister (separately) that the Ustasha government was a “criminal regime,” but these pronouncements were apparently only made at the request of the US State Department’s envoy on Holocaust issues, who met with them earlier this week in Zagreb. […]

Interestingly, while the date March 24th was symbolically reserved for the Karadzic verdict this year, those headlines came perilously close to being upstaged on that same day by an unwelcome headline regarding our pal Croatia, “Croatia’s ‘Banal’ Fascism on Display at Israel Match.” (Four days later, Zuroff was busy again: “Wiesenthal Center Calls for Sanctions Against Croatian Soccer Fans in Wake of Fascist and Anti-Semitic Chants at Recent Israeli-Croatian Friendly Match

Indeed, why is a Nazi hunter having such a busy 2016 in Croatia? Here he was the previous week:


Nazi-Hunter Criticizes Croatia Fans’ Fascist Chants
(Balkan Insight, April 6, 2016)

…“If the prime minister and/or at least other ministers would have clearly and unequivocally denounced the disgusting behaviour of the Croatian fans after the match, the damage done would have been mitigated somewhat, but the only response from the prime minister’s office was a short press release condemning the use of symbols and slogans of totalitarian regimes, without mentioning the match and the specifics of the event,” Zuroff wrote in his article.

[Meanwhile, Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic’s statement responding to the Jewish and Serb boycott of the annual Jasenovac commemoration seemed to blame the boycotters: “I’m sorry that this occasion, instead of paying respect to the victims, is used for politicization that opens new divisions in society. All that not only insults the victims and their families, but also inflicts huge damage on Croatia.” (It’s apparently gotten so that the previous government, itself no beacon of anti-fascism, has joined the boycott, acknowledging that the current government has a fascism problem.)]

[Zuroff] also criticised Croatian Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic and Education and Sports Minister Predrag Sustar, who attended the match against Israel in Osijek, for not reacting immediately.

“Given the fact that these chants were clearly heard by all those in the stadium, their failure to respond is an indication of tolerance for such outrageous, insulting and clearly anti-Semitic behaviour,” Zuroff said.

Zuroff alleged that Croatia is “a country where manifestations of fascism and anti-Semitism are very common, especially in the local soccer stadiums…”

…Football governing body FIFA fined the Croatian Football Federation 55,000 euros after fans chanted “Za dom spremni” at a match against Norway in March 2015, and ordered the national team to play its next match to an empty stadium. […]

And yet here was that June:

Croatia faces hardline sanctions over swastika etched on pitch (InsideWorldFootball.com, By Mark Baber, June 15, 2015)

…[I]ncredibly, despite a giant swastika being emblazoned on a pitch during a televised match which was being held behind closed doors due to previous racist incidents, the game continued with groundsmen attempting, but failing, to remove the markings at half-time.

…Following the imposition of the closed door sanction, the Croatian FA…blamed an anti-racism campaigner for bringing the problem of racist chanting to the attention of UEFA, despite the history of Nazi sentiment expressed by Croatian fans which included 200 of them lining up in swastika formation on the terraces in a game against Italy in Livorno 2006. The ineffectiveness of the Croatian Football Federation in tackling the problem is unsurprising given that [Croatian Football Federation president Davor] Suker himself has been photographed paying his respects at the tomb of the fascist Ustase leader and war criminal Ante Pavelic in Madrid.

Then that August (under a slightly different headline): Croatians chant “Kill a Serb” at concert organized by local authorities to celebrate Serb-expulsion national holiday (Balkan Insight, Aug. 6, 2015)

And September:

Croatia coach defends controversial choice of Simunic [as his assistant, citing Simunic’s “decency”, “patriotism” and promoting “a good atmosphere”] (Joe Simunic was of course the soccer star who celebrated Croatia’s World Cup qualification in November 2013 with the Croatian-fascist chant “Za Dom Spremni” — a Croatian ‘indiscretion’ that uncharacteristically found its way to mainstream radars, such as ESPN’s.)

Meanwhile, a few more details on Croatia’s new culture minister, Hasanbegovic, a Croatian Muslim:

Croatian Historian Condemns Minister’s WWII Rhetoric (Balkan Insight, April 13, 2016)

…Culture minister Zlatko Hasanbegovic has never expressed any regret for his controversial statements in the 1990s praising Croatian Nazi-allied Ustasa fighters as heroes, [historian] Natasa Matausic told BIRN in an interview…Matausic also criticised more recent statements by Hasanbegovic in which he…insisted that Croatia was “tragically defeated in 1945…”

Hasanbegovic has said that the state should cut the funding for the annual commemoration at Jasenovac, arguing that the event was used for “the rehabilitation of Yugoslav communism”…Matausic also had harsh words for Croatia’s HDZ-backed President Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic, who visited the Auschwitz concentration camp in January.“I remember, after my first visit to Auschwitz, faced with the fact that the name ‘death factory’ for this camp is not a metaphor but a literal meaning, I was completely broken. I couldn’t eat, sleep or see anyone near me,” Matausic said.“The president, in the other hand, had enough strength to support our handball players at a match in Cracow after her visit to Auschwitz,” she added…

Mind you, what expectations can one have of the permanently recovering fascists of Croatia, when the godfather himself — the U.S. — gives tacit blessings to such goings-on? It was after a doppelganger Croatian year of escalating clerical-fascist activity (2006-07) that NATO gave the nod to Croatia as its/our home base in the Balkans:


As you probably are not aware, on October 1st [2007] NATO began twelve days of special forces maneuvers on land and in the air and sea, on the Yugoslav side of the Adriatic. Thirteen countries are participating, including twelve NATO members plus Croatia, which is hosting the maneuvers even though it is not a member — a first. Albania and Montenegro, also not members, are observing. Serbia is not.

These military maneuvers, positioning Croatia as NATO’s command center in the Adriatic Sea area, with coastal states Albania and Montenegro as deputies (see map), are being held after a year of escalating clerical-fascist activity in Croatia, activity to which NATO, by presenting Croatia as a model Adriatic state, has given its blessing.

Now, keeping this year’s ‘colorful’ Croatia headlines in mind, enjoy this final flashback to Bush’s last year, 2008:

Bush: Croatia a Good Example for the Region

The United States of America supports Croatia’s membership of NATO, said the president of the USA, George W. Bush in an interview for Croatian Television (HTV)…adding that…Croatia has become an example for the other countries created after the fall of Yugoslavia…I am coming to a different country from the one visited by my forerunner Bill Clinton. Since then society, government and economy have changed – said the president of the most powerful country in the world. He explained that NATO is important because it will ensure stability and security, which will attract foreign investments which bring well paid jobs.

Remarks by President Bush and Prime Minister Sanader of Croatia in Zagreb, Croatia (PRNewsWire, April 5, 2008)

…The United States appreciates the leadership you have shown in the cause of freedom. We re pleased Albania and Croatia have been invited to join NATO…Laura, who has joined me today, and I are proud to stand on the soil of an independent Croatia.
(Applause.)

The Croatian people have overcome war and hardship to build peaceful relations with your neighbors, and to build a maturing democracy in one of the most beautiful countries on the face of the Earth.

(Applause.) Americans admire your courage and admire your persistence.

And we look forward to welcoming you as a partner in NATO.

Henceforth, should any danger threaten your people, America and the NATO Alliance will stand with you, and no one will be able to take your freedom away.
(Applause.)

With the changes underway in this region, Europe stands on the threshold of a new and hopeful history.

The ancient and costly rivalries that led to two world wars have fallen away. […]

So much for that.

Croatia has served as a very good example, following a very dramatic moment, and that is the breakup of Yugoslavia…I’m really looking forward to going to your country…And they say it’s one of the most beautiful coastlines in the entire world.

–President George W. Bush, March 26, 2008

As we all know, human rights don’t matter if you’ve got a nice coast. And so that’s usually what most articles about Croatia in the West are about. Not only was HBO’s “Game of Thrones” sold on it, filming part of the show there, but CNN has been known to loop Croatian tourism ads saying ‘Croatia — the Mediterranean as it once was.’

And so Croatia, that good guy of the Balkans — “leading the way to the EU” — pledged help to other Balkan nations on their own path to the EU: Croatia pledges to help fellow Western Balkan countries on path to EU (Xinhua, March 29, 2008)

Croatian Foreign Minister Gordan Jandrokovic said on Saturday that his country is willing to assist fellow Western Balkan countries on their path to EU membership by offering them its experience and advice…Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn stressed the positive role of Croatia in stabilizing the region….

As Miodrag Linta, head of Serbia’s Coalition of Refugee Associations, put it in November 2014, Croatia presents itself “as a country that has met all the requirements before entering the European Union and therefore claims the right to lecture Serbia about respecting the standards of democracy and the rule of law - which represents the pinnacle of cynicism.”

He added:

More than 100,000 people gathered [in Knin, Croatia, to commemorate 1995’s Serb-cleansing Operation Storm] for the 11th time, organized by Marko Perković aka Thompson, many of whom carried flags, hats and other props with the symbols of the WW2-era Nazi entity known as the Independent State of Croatia (NDH). Linta added that those gathered in Čavoglava sang songs with lyrics such as, “Oh mother Croatia, we will slaughter Serbs …” and the like, and also chanted slogans of NDH’s Ustasha regime which spread hatred towards Serbs. Linta specifically invited parliamentary groups to condemn, in a declaration, convicted war criminal Dario Kordić, former president of the HDZ party in Bosnia-Herzegovina and vice-president of the war-time Croat Republic of Herzeg-Bosnia entity. He this year addressed the event in Čavoglave and said it was “a magnificent gathering, and a road sign showing Croatia where it should go.”

Kordić, Linta recalled, was this year was released from prison after serving two thirds of his sentence of 25 years, handed down by the Hague Tribunal for the war crimes he committed against Bosniak civilians.

Meanwhile, in addition to graciously offering to mentor other Balkan countries vis-a-vis the EU, Croatia in 2009 also made this promise: “Croatia won’t block Serbian integration”

Fast-forward:

Croatia to block Serbia from joining EU over [2003] war crimes law (Feb. 6, 2015)

Serbia’s EU accession talks blocked by Croatia (March 21, 2016)

Croatia Stalls Serbia’s EU Negotiations (April 7, 2016)


EU Urges Croatia Not to Block Serbia’s Path
(April 15, 2016)

Thanks to Aleksandra Rebic for circulating:

“KINGDOM OF YUGOSLAVIA DURING WORLD WAR II” by Miloslav Samardzic to be screened on Sunday April 19, 2015 (In Serbian with English subtitles)
at St. Luke Serbian Orthodox Church
10660 River Road, Potomac, Maryland 20854
after the Liturgy and Coffee Hour
(To start around 12 p.m.)
301.299.2704
info@svluka.org

Trailer can be seen here and here:

It will be interesting to see whether or not the film, which is full of rare footage and photos, accounts for the Allied betrayal of Mihailovich and Yugoslavia with the little-known fact that, according to American WWII intelligence officer Lt. Col. Robert McDowell, the Vatican needed for the barbarity against Orthodox Serbs by Catholic Croatia — a Hitler-aligned WWII loser and therefore vulnerable to punishment — to be concealed. Meanwhile, Churchill needed the Vatican’s help in keeping the Irish in check. And so a deal was struck: Yugoslavia would be handed over to the Communists, who were adept at suppressing information; Croatia would be reabsorbed into Yugoslavia and therefore would lose without losing; and Tito — that big Partisan warrior against the Fascists, who nonetheless entertained close to 300 meetings with them — would be our man to help everyone forget who did what to whom, under the Commie banner of Brotherhood and Unity.

The film comes at an opportune time, given that the E.U.’s newest pride and joy, Croatia, has just appointed its first female president, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, of neo-Ustasha 1990s president Franjo Tudjman’s party. One of many NATO-approved “former” fascists, she promises to continue the fine Croatian tradition of minimizing the horrors that went on at Jasenovac. (So, America, let that be instructive in case we think that female “firsts” promise anything other than business-as-usual.)

A sampling of those horrors surfaced on Thursday in a Haaretz book review:

“A Hell Called Jasenovac” by Erwin Miller, translated from Croatian to Hebrew by Miriam Steiner-Aviezer. Yad Vashem Publications, 143 pages, 68 shekels.

…It is based on the articles, eyewitness accounts and memories of Erwin Miller, a young Jew from a small community in Croatia, who was imprisoned for four years, from age 17, in the hell that was named Jasenovac, the concentration camp that was considered “the Auschwitz of the Balkans.”

[We know, of course, that Jasenovac was more than the Auschwitz of the Balkans, it was the blueprint for Auschwitz, if one looks at the timeline.]

…It provides detailed description of the tortures and abuse and killings of Serbs, Roma and Jews by Croatians, who employed primitive, cruel, blood-curdling methods throughout most of the war years…Jasenovac existed from mid-1941 until the end of the war.

The purposes of this compound of camps were the imprisonment of Croatians who opposed the regime, and ethnic cleansing [extermination] of others. No less than 600,000 people were murdered there, the vast majority of them Serbs, as well as approximately 14,600 Roma…and between 20,000 and 25,000 Jews…

An international delegation eventually paid a two-hour visit to the camp, and a second delegation, from the Red Cross, visited in June 1944 — too late, of course - and without being shown any traces of the atrocities: the shattering of skulls with axes, the severing of body parts, beheadings and hanging of victims on rows of trees, slitting open of prisoners’ stomachs with a unique knife [the infamous “Serb cutter”], and disposal of their remains in the nearby river. The vast majority of killings were carried out with knives, hammers and axes…The rock bottom of the events…is the execution of a young man from [the author’s] town who tried to escape but failed due to heavy snow that upset his plans: he was skewered alive on a pole that pierced his naked body, which turned blue. The screams persisted until the young man finally died. All throughout, the prisoners stood there, weeping.

Another question pertains to the role of clergymen in the camp: the priest Miroslav Filipović-Majstorović, for instance, who with his own hands murdered dozens of prisoners, with a cruelty that was exceptional even at Jasenovac. He was in the habit of coming back from his killing sprees wearing his blood-stained priest’s cloak, the large cross around his neck, a dagger stuck in his belt and a spear in his hand. He would cut off dozens of victim’s ears with the dagger, and it was he who devised the unique knife with which the prisoners’ stomachs were sliced open…

I’m glad to see that Yad Vashem is the publisher of this book, because as recently as my 2007 visit there, throughout all the Holocaust exhibits, nowhere was the word Jasenovac — or even Ustasha or Croatia — to be found. Could 70 years of suppression finally be lifting?

Another book that’s just come out is by the above-mentioned WWII researcher and filmmaker Miloslav Samardzic. The book, which has the same name as the film, presents the basics about WWII Yugoslavia, facilitated with many photos. The volume benefits from Belgrade’s very recently opened archives, as well as from documents discovered only three or four years ago in Freiburg, Germany, about the real “Siege of Sarajevo.”

Thanks to the publisher of @PoglediFR (or facebook.com/PoglediWorld), Slobodan Kostadinovic, for getting this important work out there.

Yesterday, Pamela Geller was good enough to take a minute from — literally — saving the world, to cross-post Aleksandra Rebic’s open letter marking March 24th. She preceded it with the following introduction and my note to her (and there were some good comments by her clueful readers right off the top):

On March 24, 1999, Bill Clinton unleashed a disastrous NATO air campaign against Yugoslavia, against the Christian Serbs, against a sovereign nation that did not pose a threat to members of the alliance.

The bombing campaign was the second major combat op in its history, following the 1995 bombing of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The US involvement against the Christian Serbs was astonishing. Fifteen [16] years on, we see the poison fruit of Clinton’s war, including the ethnic cleansing of Sarajevo (now all Muslim), while paving the way for an Islamic state in the heart of Europe.

Much thanks to Julia Gorin, who reminds me to mark this black day: “A day that means nothing by now to the forgetful American mind, but a day that will live in infamy more than any other in my mind and in those of others who remember.

“This was the day, 16 years ago, that our supposedly anti-war president (still a shock to call him that) Bill Clinton announced to the world that NATO planes were in the skies, bombing our ally of WWI and WWII, Serbia. Talk about a ‘rush to war,’ as the Right was accused of in the 1.5-year run-up to Iraq. (Even a month before, in Feb. 1999, Weakly Standard, for example, had not one article about a possible war in Yugoslavia, or mentioning Kosovo. Yet, like foot soldiers, as soon Clinton pulled it out of a hat in March, they and everyone else was on board.)

“Anyway, I just wanted to forward these few paragraphs, written today by Aleksandra Rebic — a onetime neighbor of one of the 500 American pilots sheltered from the Germans by Mihailovich’s guerrillas after crashing in Yugoslavia — marking the day.”

WHAT IS OWED TO THE SERBS / By Aleksandra Rebic March 24, 2015

One of those moments you never forget: Before the dawn on March 25, 1999, I stepped outside the door to find The New York Times there on the ground with the headline announcing that NATO had begun its bombing campaign against the Serbs in the former Yugoslavia on March 24, 1999. I remember looking at that front page of the paper before picking it up and thinking – “They are really doing it. It’s no longer a threat. It’s real. It’s real. What a mistake. What a mistake.” Then I picked up the paper and went back inside. So began a 78 bombing campaign which included the time span over the Easter holiday and my family’s Christian Patron Saint’s Day – our Krsna Slava, St. Lazarus Saturday – which falls a week before Serbian Orthodox Easter.

I love America. Always have. Always will. But that bombing campaign in 1999, yet another horrific mistep in American foreign policy against the Christian Serbs that had spanned throughout the decade of the 1990s, beginning with the break-up of the former Yugoslavia, was a mistake of GIANT proportions. The Serbians had always been one of America’s most steadfast and loyal Allies and certainly her best friend in the Balkans for sure. What hurts the most is that now so many Serbians no longer consider America a friend or an ally and have no wish to be either of those to America. That is the real tragedy. The WRONG people were targeted. The WRONG people were punished. The WRONG people in the Balkans were alienated.

The NATO bombing campaign of 1999 against the Serbs stands as one of the most unjust acts of aggression in the history of the world. I can only hope and pray that, at the very least, some day there will be a public act of contrition in the form of a public apology from America, regardless of whether there is one from her NATO allies or not, and that this apology will resound for all the world to hear.

AMERICA OWES SERBIA THAT ACT OF REPENTANCE, AND MUCH MORE.

My new friend Jerry Gordon, a senior editor at New English Review, in March posted a blurb about Professor Raphael Israeli’s new book:

Thursday, 14 March 2013

The Death Camps of Croatia Visions and Revisions 1941-1945

by Raphael Israeli

Transactions Publishers
ISBN :978-1-4128-4975-3
New Brunswick (U.S.A.) and London (U.K.)
201 p.

Blurb for Book Jacket

The Death Camps of Croatia — Visions and Revisions, 1941-1945 chronicles the virtually unknown Genocide committed in unspeakable ways by the Ustashi fascists, Catholic priests and Bosnian Muslims of 700,000 Serbs, Jews, and Gypsies and dissident Croatians in the Jadovno and Jasenovac death camps during the period from 1941 to 1945 in wartime Yugoslavia in the Nazi-supported [Independent State of Croatia]. Using recent archival research unveiled at the Jadovno Conference in 2011, the author reveals the catastrophic and grisly testimonies of how these atrocities were committed and the evidence destroyed. It is a masterful and scholarly expose of the hitherto revisionist history of the Holocaust committed in wartime Yugoslavia.

Review

…That genocide is now considered the worst per capita in Europe surpassing those of the SS death factories of Auschwitz, Birkenau, and Treblinka. The slaughter was even found to be despicable by the Nazis…Over 80 percent of Yugoslavia’s [sic: Croatia’s] pre-war Jewish population of over 86,000…lost their lives in the death camps…Marshal Josip Broz Tito, wartime Partisan leader immured knowledge of these Croatian Death Camps in postwar Yugoslavia. The book defeats the revisionist history of the genocide perpet[u]ated by contemporary Croatian leaders aimed at covering up what occurred…The author pays special attention to the insidious role of the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, the Haj Amin al Husseini, and Hitler’s guest in Berlin during WWII. The author connects the Grand Mufti to the Muslim Brotherhood, his intervention in pogroms against Jews in Iraq, recruitment of Bosnian Muslim SS Waffen troops and scuttling of Jewish Children transports to Palestine…

Jerome B. Gordon, author of The West Speaks and a senior editor of The New English Review.

One sentence in the review which I did not include has the book revealing a “hitherto unknown genocide by nationalist Serbs and Cetniks who during the Nazi occupation relentlessly tracked down and killed Jews.” This caused me to raise my eyebrows, and I supposed that perhaps Israeli — like every other journalist, scholar and historian who’s worried about making the Serbs look too much better than their enemies — felt compelled to include such a section in order to morally equalize WWII Serbs with WWII Croatians. While I’d be surprised if some tracking-down and turning-in of Jews didn’t go on in Serbia, as it did in almost every European country, it certainly wasn’t the case with the most famous Chetnik fighters — those of Draza Mihailovich — who had 2,000 Bulgarian Jews fighting alongside them.

It’s possible the moral equivalence came from Communist sources that the author may have used. Or perhaps from the notorious, paid-for screed by Philip Cohen Serbia’s Secret War. Mihailovich did specifically address anti-Semitism as unacceptable, which implies there was at least some of it among his forces. But that’s a very long way from “relentlessly tracked down and killed,” much less “genocide.” It’s possible also that Israeli is conflating Mihailovich’s men with the collaborationist Nedic government, which did help hunt down Jews for the Gestapo. (Mihailovich had moles within the Nedic regime, funneling money, food and supplies to the resistance.) Even in that case, though, it would be a bit like comparing Vichy France to the SS itself. (Worse, since it took a lot more Serb blood than French before collaborating.)

What is described in the quote below applies also to the terrorists and mobsters of the KLA who are the U.S.-approved “leaders” of “independent” Kosovo, and helps explain it:

I remember the awkward moment when the Government dropped Draza Mihailovich and backed Tito. In the future, our directive ran, Mihailovich’s forces will be described not as ‘patriots’ but as ‘terrorist gangs’; in the future, we shall also drop the phrase ‘red bandits’ as applied to the Partisans and substitute ‘freedom fighters.’ …I assumed that the men far above who made the policy-decisions were as cynical about the distinction between bandit and Partisan as we were. Only later did it dawn on me that British Cabinet ministers, archbishops and newspaper editors actually believed our propaganda and took this moral double-talk seriously.

–Richard Crossman, New Statesman, Dec. 15, 1956

In reference to the above, I’ve often mused: If the belligerents, the Western interlopers, the dutiful scribes and their vested corporate editors have come to believe the lies they were telling, are they still lying? Or did they once lie, and now are simply deceived by themselves?

A note on Richard Crossman, from Aleksandra Rebic, from whom I got the above quote:

Richard Crossman (December 15, 1907 – April 5, 1974) …was a prominent Socialist, a British Labor Party politician, a Cabinet Minister…an author, and the editor of the New Statesman - Britain’s Current Affairs and Politics Magazine which is still “in circulation” today. Although Crossman was a prominent and devoted Socialist, he was a staunch anti-Communist. Crossman edited “The God that Failed” (1949) which is a collection of essays written by Communist intellectuals who became “disillusioned”.

Richard Crossman was around when the British, under the wartime leadership of Prime Minister Winston Churchill, made the policy decision with regards to Yugoslavia to drop their loyal and dedicated ally General Draza Mihailovich and support Josip Broz Tito in 1943/44, during WWII. You might think that a British socialist such as Crossman would not have had a problem with that “policy change”, but he did. Over ten years later, in 1956, it still bothered him enough that he wrote about it in the New Statesman.

I was struck by the extent to which his astute observations continued to remain relevant as the 20th century ended and into the 21st century. They continue to remain on the mark today, over fifty years later. That’s the thing about “Truth”. It remains morally absolute.

How far The New Statesman has fallen. Last month during the Olympics we were treated to the following from what passes for a statesman today, one Denis MacShane, who writes as if entirely indentured to the mobster-terrorists he helped prop up when he was a Labour minister. Hell, he’s so invested in the terrorists that he refuses to believe that mafia kingpin and former KLA boss Thaci (a.k.a. Kosovo’s “prime minister”) had anything to do with the KLA’s murder-for-organs operation. And when Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic dares to voice concern for his citizens and speak of the impending fate of the last of Kosovo’s Serbs, even this isn’t allowed. The usual pattern holds: Not only are Serbs not allowed to live in Kosovo, but they’re not even allowed to object to that fact.

An old Balkans spectre returns at the Olympics
Serbia’s new president is reviving the language of break-up and partition.
(Aug. 5)

A spectre is haunting the Balkans. Twenty five years after Slobodan Milosevic launched [sic] the nationalist conflicts with a rant [sic] in Pristina about the iniquities of the people of Kosovo, the new president of Serbia, Tomislav Nikolic, has returned to the theme with the accusation that the government of Kosovo is planning “genocide” against the Serbs who live in the country.

…In an extraordinary outburst, Nikolic gave an interview in London in which he accused the internationally supervised government in Pristina of planning to expel the 40,000 Serbs who live in the north of Kosovo.

“When you expel 40,000 people, regardless of whether they are women, men, and when you change the ethnic composition of the territory that is genocide. There is a danger that Pristina would be prepared to go that far. The only armed force there, apart from the international community, is Albanian. I am convinced they wouldn’t mind doing that immediately.”

Nikolic has a fondness for the “G” word. His first statement after his election in May was to deny that the cold-blooded organised [sic] killing of 8,000 [sic] men at Srebrenica could be described as a genocidal crime….the language Milosevic used [sic] in 1987 to whip up Serb nationalist passions against Kosovans remains a point of reference for him.

The new prime minister of Serbia, Ivica Dacic, was Milosevic’s spokesman and has taken over the leadership of the Serb Socialist Party, once headed by Milosevic. Dacic has talked of a new partition of Kosovo…Belgrade’s refusal to deal [sic] with Kosovo is causing a nationalist backlash all over the Western Balkans.

But for the Milosevic retreads who have won power in Belgrade on the back of increasing unemployment and poverty, the spirit of 1987 demands that Kosovo has to accept re-partition and other humiliations to placate Serb nationalism. The presence of a contingent of Nato troops will prevent any outbreak of violence and Pristina is focused on inward investment , winning recognition for their young nation and offering the Serbs anything short of breaking apart Kosovo which diplomats think will lead to further demands for new frontiers and partitions elsewhere in the western Balkans.

The EU made major concessions to Nikolic’s predecessor, Boris Tadic, in order to nudge Serbia to a compromise on Kosovo so that both countries could advance towards EU membership….But the new nationalists in power in Belgrade have pocketed these and reverted to old lines. A new strategy for the western Balkans is needed. Milosevic caused the break-up of the former Yugoslavia into seven separate nations. His successors are back with more break-up and partition language. It was a disaster in 1987. It remains bad, sad politics today.

Who knew MacShane could write in Albanian, which is how this reads. We also have that favorite, WSJ-esque, touch of making the ‘Milosevic era’ comparison. Plus the usual inversion of blaming any further secessions in the region not on the actual precedent — the Kosovo secession — but on the federalists who want to remain citizens of the country they’ve always been citizens of (the Serbian citizens of northern Kosovo). Then of course, in addition to calling it “major concessions” when a peep is belatedly tolerated from Serbia in the course of her rape, a Serb leader is “nationalist” if he talks of partition, which had been on the table when compromise by the Albanians was futilely hoped for by the internationals.

The best comment after this carbon-writing came from journalist John Bosnitch:

Mon, 2012-08-06 08:20

Dear Editor,

Yes, there is a spectre haunting not just the Balkans, but the whole of Europe. That spectre is the spirit of the Nazi newspaper, the Völkischer Beobachter, which is, in this case, haunting the pages of the New Statesman. The dripping race hatred so evident in your article denouncing Serbian President Nikolic’s desperate call for protection against genocide is a prime example of why we Serbs are starting to see ourselves as…the next “Jews” of this German-dominated continent that has the Holocaust to show as its most historically relevant example of its treatment of minorities and other “chosen peoples”.

As an ethnic Serb, I cannot ignore the droning German-led EU calls for the elimination of the last vestiges of my nation from our southern heartland-province of Kosovo. We already endured our Kristallnacht in the March 2004 Kosovo Pogrom, when in less than 72 hours, 35 churches and monasteries were set aflame (many of them dating to the 14th century and representing an irretrievable loss for mankind). Dozens were killed, thousands wounded, thousands of houses and shops leveled and more than 4,000 Kosovo Serbs were expelled by rampaging Albanian extremists.

Now we are hearing from sources in Berlin and from their backers in Washington that the time has finally come to resolve the “Kosovo Serb Question” with what would amount to a new Final Solution directed against that last surviving ten-percent remnant of Kosovo’s indigenous Serb population.

And yet, when our new, democratically elected president dares to plead for help at the Olympic altar of peace and international friendship, your writer, Denis MacShane, not only rejects but denounces our plea in a manner reminiscent of how England and the rest of the “civilized” world rejected and turned back the S.S. St. Louis, the ocean liner carrying over 900 doomed Jews trying to flee Hitler in 1939.

May I therefore make the traditional one last request of the condemned before more than a thousand years of Serbian culture and ethnic heritage is erased from our Kosovo homeland? Please do send Denis MacShane to report from Kosovo after we inconvenient Serbs are gone, so that he may dance on our graves and report the event as a festival of European inter-ethnic understanding and progress. His resulting article will most certainly go down in the history of hate literature and seal the reputation of the New Statesman forever.

Sincerely,
John Bosnitch
Journalist
The InterMedia Center News Agency
Belgrade, Serbia

A comment by “PEN” is also worth quoting:

…[Serbs] are subjected to constant harassment, intimidation, and risk life and limb when trying to return to their homes. A returnee Serb couple in their seventies were murdered recently. Churches demolished. Cemetaries vandalised and desecrated. Buses carrying children stoned etc etc. But of course none of this would chime into your rosy picture of Albanian run Kosovo. And so far as partition and changing borders is concerned isn’t that what the Kosovo project was all about in the first place. Did anybody ask the Serbian people if they agreed to the partition of their country. You sound like a mouthpiece for the Pristina government.

As with all things Balkan, Western media differs not at all from Ottoman media. Below is an article from The Journal of Turkish Weekly:

Nikolic’s Comments on Kosovo Draw Fire (Aug. 2)

The refusal of ultra-nationalist Serb President Tomislav Nikolic to rule out partitioning Kosovo along ethnic lines, reminding people of the bloody wars that followed the dissolution of the former Yugoslavia, is causing sharp reactions.

…Nikolic said that Serbs in Kosovo are living “under the threat of genocide,” and any attempt to impose Pristina’s rule in the north “could lead to a Serb exodus.”

“What if the Serbs move out? Who will accept the results of such genocide?” Nikolic told The Guardian. The new president said 40,000 people could be expelled, “regardless of whether they are women, men, [civilians or] soldiers.” The result would be a change to “the ethnic composition of the territory.”

“Nikolic is embarrassing himself with statements about genocide that have no basis in fact and ideas about partition that would end Serbia’s hopes of ever gaining entry into the EU,” Daniel Serwer [did he just come up with another new rule for Serbia’s EU entry?], professor of conflict management at the US-based Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, told SETimes.

“[Nikolic] should consult Serbs south of the Ibar River about his partition ideas: most of them are strongly opposed, as is the Serbian Orthodox Church,” he said. [See how Serwer conveniently cites the for-sale part of the Church that we installed.]

Seb Bytyci, executive director of the Balkan Policy Institute in Pristina, said Kosovo’s institutions are multi-ethnic and have not undertaken any action that would be described as aiming to cause Kosovo Serbs to flee.

“On the contrary, Kosovo has spent tens of millions of dollars to build a multi-ethnic and integrated society. This rhetoric of victimisation is what has contributed to the terrible wars of the 1990s,” Bytyci told SETimes. [And as an Albanian, he should be an expert on victimization rhetoric.]

“Since 1999, Serbia has maintained parallel institutions in Kosovo, in breach of Resolution 1244, which have sought to undermine Kosovo’s development, chiefly by maintaining segregation between Serbs and Albanians. And throughout this time, Serbia has sought to create a mini-state in northern Kosovo, severely undermining the stability of the whole region,” Bytyci told SETimes.

Right. It’s Serbia that divides Serbs and Albanians. And not the Albanian feces on the walls of houses for Serb returnees, which keeps Serbs out.

Below is Nikolic’s Guardian interview that MacShane was most likely referring to:

Serbian president Nikolic warns of Kosovo genocide (July 29)

The Serbian president has claimed Serbs in Kosovo are living under the threat of genocide and would not rule out a partition between ethnic Serb and Albanian regions of the former province….arguing that until now only Serbia had been asked to make concessions in efforts to defuse the dispute and it would now demand more concessions from Pristina.

“What compromise has been done by Pristina up to now? None. All the talks have been on things Serbia will accept. Serbia hasn’t set any conditions,” he said. “It’s not a compromise if Serbia is always backtracking step by step. It’s not a compromise if Pristina says its independence is recognised and that it will realise its independence on our territory.”

A Serb enclave around the northern half of the divided city of Mitrovica refuses to accept rule from the ethnic Albanian government in Pristina, the focus of tension since Kosovo declared its independence in 2008.

Kosovo’s leadership has repeatedly called for the international community to help it extend its authority into the Mitrovica enclave and has been increasingly assertive in its efforts to force the issue.

Nikolic said any attempt to impose Pristina’s rule could lead to a Serb exodus. “What if the Serbs move out. Who will accept the results of such genocide? That is one of the definitions of genocide: when you expel 40,000 people, regardless of whether they are women, men, [civilians or] soldiers, and when you change the ethnic composition of the territory. That is genocide.

“There is a danger that Pristina would be prepared to go that far…” He added that the only thing preventing such action was the presence of Nato troops. [Who so far have been helping beat the Serbs into submission to Pristina rule, which ultimately will have helped lead to the exodus.]

Nikolic underlined an earlier declaration that he would never exercise power in Pristina, and called on his Kosovan counterpart, Atifete Jahjaga, to admit she would never govern in northern Mitrovica…

Nikolic said his greatest challenge was to fill the estimated $3bn (£2bn) hole in the budget. He asked for international assistance…but warned creditors against making their help conditional on Serbia making concessions over Kosovo.

“Maybe someone thought we were ready to make various concessions if we were poor. But we expect the international community and our friends to help us to recover the economy in line with their duties and obligations,” he said. “We don’t want be treated like country cousins.”

I’m proud of Right Side News, which today has published my article “Propagandist at Washington Times Perverts WWII History to Scorn Serbs.”

It has photos and footage related to the most suppressed WWII story ever.

********UPDATE AT BOTTOM*********

Well we knew it wouldn’t be long. If nationalists win a Serbian election, it follows that there will be an article in the Washington Times by Croatian-supremacist Jeffrey Kuhner, as usual angling for a new war against Serbia — by making the argument that Serbia wants it. As a typical rapist would.

Below is the letter I submitted to Washington Times, followed by a deconstruction of Kuhner’s latest excuse for Serbia needing another good bombing.

Dear Editor:

Are there no fact-checkers at the paper, or is Mr. Kuhner exempt from such rigors? (“Did Serbia Vote for War?” May 24.) Or perhaps Balkans facts are still expendable in America. Mr. Kuhner repeatedly references the “Greater Serbia project” that was reluctantly but repeatedly disproved at the Serb-hostile Hague, and brandishes the “neo-fascist” label that is so popular to use against Serbs. This from a champion of the nation that still reminisces about its Hitler-bestowed Independent State of Croatia, and still holds Mass for its fuehrer Ante Pavelic.

Nor is Mr. Kuhner concerned with the Albanian nationalism which not only started a terrorist insurgency to wrest 15% of Serbian land (is it “nationalist” to have a problem with that?), but which employed organ-harvesting, jihad, and human- and drug-trafficking in its service. He likewise isn’t bothered by the fundamentalist Muslim president of Bosnia who insisted on war to begin with. No, Mr. Kuhner wants to keep readers eternally fixed on Serbs. This is a man with a chip on his shoulder.

In time for Memorial Day Weekend, Mr. Kuhner gave a slap in the face to thousands of WWII vets, tracing Serbianationalism™ to “Drazen” (sic: Draza) Mihailovic and his Chetniks, the royalist guerrillas who fought not only the Nazis, but also the Communists after Tito’s Partisans attacked them. Something for which Ronald Reagan singled Serbian heroism out and for which President Truman bestowed a posthumous Legion of Merit upon Mihailovic. ( “The ultimate tragedy of Draza Mihailovich cannot erase the memory of his heroic and often lonely struggle against the twin tyrannies that afflicted his people, Nazism and Communism.” — Gov. Ronald Reagan, 1979)

It was articles like this, calling the Serbs and Chetniks “racist” and “far-right” — and inverting the documented, Axis-aligned fascism and continuing supremacy of Croats, Albanians and Bosniaks — that were so hard for American WWII vets like the aging Chetnik-rescued Richard Felman to take in the 90s, when the West was angling for the next betrayal of the Serbs. He was aghast to see Axis propaganda being printed in American newspapers at the turn of the millennium. And here we are more than a decade past, still repeating it.

Kuhner has the Chetniks “slaughtering tens of thousands of Bosnian Muslims, Croatians and Kosovar Albanians.” As any Jewish library can show, one-third of Croatia’s Serb population was liquidated by the Croatians’ Ustasha regime which Mr. Kuhner is covering for with his inversions; and huge swaths of Kosovo’s Serbs (plus 400 Jews) were rounded up by those “Kosovar Albanians” in their fez-capped Nazi uniforms. I won’t go into Jewish Holocaust survivor Cadik Dannon’s experience with a Bosnian Muslim working at a Croatian concentration camp, but suffice it to say that it wasn’t the Croats, Albanians, or Bosniaks whom the Germans had to threaten to kill by the hundred for every dead German soldier; it was the Serbs. And this of course affected the attack plans of Mihailovic’s Chetniks. An obscure term to Americans, which the writer hisses like a true partisan of one of the sides in the Balkan wars.

By equating the recently victorious Serbian Radical Party with “Mihailovic’s Chetniks,” Kuhner elevates the object of his derision. That he means to do the opposite at Mihailovic’s expense the very month that Congress yet again praised Mihailovic and his Chetniks for helping execute the largest air rescue in American combat history (and two days after Bronze Star recipient George Vujnovich was inducted into the New York Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame for coordinating it), should have readers asking why The Times is allowing itself to be used as a mouthpiece, and lowered to the level of the Islamic and Nazi-heir propaganda websites where this ‘information’ comes from.

“No wonder nationalists celebrated [Tomislav Nikolic’s] victory, unfurling Chetnik flags and symbols,” continues Mr. Kuhner. Yes, take it from someone who has no problem with the chilling symbol of Croatian purity that is the checkered flag of Croatia, resuscitated during that country’s 1990s re-embrace of fascism, complete with Nazi and Ustasha symbolism and street names.

Mr. Kuhner doesn’t even bother with the veneer of accuracy for the paper’s sake, using the obsolete figure of “250,000” killed in the Balkan wars. Even if, to the 100,000 killed on all sides in Bosnia, you add the 20,000 in Croatia and the 3,000 in Kosovo before the NATO bombs and the 5,000 after, that still leaves us under 130,000. The mainstream media long ago, if imperfectly, corrected themselves on this, but here we have the generally more honest Times still latched onto the inflated propaganda figures that came from the MSM in the first place. Considering how widely cited the more accurate figures have been, including the very week before Mr. Kuhner’s article ran (upon the opening of the Mladic trial), one can only deduce a profound professional ignorance on Mr. Kuhner’s part, or an even more profound hatred. How else does one explain the right-leaning Kuhner continuing to propagate Amanpourite “facts”?

He further continues to peddle the debunked German-Bulgarian-cooked hoax about there being a Serbian plan to “annihilate ethnic Albanians in Kosovo,” referring to “Belgrade’s genocidal project,” which Hague prosecutors were at a loss to demonstrate. That he uses the term “final solution” to describe it is offensive, including to the memory of reporter Daniel Pearl, who in his December 1999 article found that the Serbs were engaging in nothing of the sort. Mr. Kuhner must have also missed the scores of other articles like it appearing in virtually every newspaper at the time, though they all subsequently opted for the original fiction over the findings. (I’d thought Washington Times to be better.)

To brazenly fly in the face of observable facts on the ground, namely a Kosovo almost devoid of non-Albanians (as per the original stated Albanian goals) takes a personality type that’s entirely alien to me. As does the hubris that enables one to recklessly abuse a prominent podium such as The Washington Times.

Kuhner makes sure to specify that Belgrade “launched” brutal wars “of aggression.” This is so readers have no idea these were actually defensive wars that neither the Bosnian nor the Croatian Serbs wanted, let alone Belgrade. “I don’t know if he is a war criminal,” Canadian former ambassador James Bissett said of Radovan Karadzic in 2008. “But I do know he did his damnedest to prevent the war.”

Kuhner also mentions Serb units in Croatia engaging “in systematic murder and destruction,” for he knows it’s unlikely readers will ever hear from the muzzled UN soldiers who are still in therapy and disability over the crimes they witnessed by Croatian troops against Serbs. The body of one charred teenage girl was still smoking when Canadian troops found her.

The Times should be ashamed, but it doesn’t know enough to be. And it cares even less.

DECONSTRUCTION: KUHNER: Did Serbia vote for war?
New ultranationalist president promotes instability (May 24)

Another war is brewing in the Balkans. Recently, Serbia’s voters elected a new president. Ultranationalist Tomislav Nikolic narrowly defeated the liberal, pro-European Union incumbent, Boris Tadic. Mr. Nikolic’s victory means the Balkans may be plunged into ethnic violence again.

[The above INSERT STOCK PARAGRAPH HERE is saying it’s not violence while only Serbs (and Roma) were being picked off (in Serbia’s Kosovo) or Serbs alone targeted for war crimes prosecution (which becomes persecution).]

The 60-year-old former cemetery manager is a neo-fascist, who wants to restore a “Great Serbia.”

[OF COURSE! That Greater Serbia project that didn’t exist last time and doesn’t exist this time. Coming to you from someone who internalized the truly fascist-spun version of the 1990s Balkans.]

Mr. Nikolic embodies the worst forms of Serbian nationalism, whose ideological roots go back to the “Chetniks” - the term for Serbian royalists - of World War II. Led by Drazen Mihailovic, the Chetniks formed a racist far-right-wing movement that sought to forge an ethnically pure Great Serb empire incorporating Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo,Macedonia, most of Bosnia and large chunks of Croatia. Allied to Benito Mussolini’s fascist Italy, the Chetniks engaged in murderous ethnic cleansing, slaughtering tens of thousands of Bosnian Muslims, Croatians and Kosovar Albanians.

THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS TO NEWSPAPERS INFILTRATED BY BALKANITES FROM THE FASCIST SIDE. Almost every drop of the preceding paragraph is written in reverse of actual events, as the reams of documentation (including Jewish documentation) of WWII Balkans attest. While in Croatia the Italians found themselves having to prevent a wholesale genocide of Serbs, it’s true that both the Partisans and Chetniks dealt with the Italians and Germans in between fighting them, depending on what arrangements became necessary, each ganging up with the Fascists at least once against the other, as the Chetniks found themselves simultaneously under attack from the Communists in Tito’s power struggle.

The Partisans (and the Fascists) made sure that the Allies — and history — would remember it only one way, and in the most nefarious-possible context. Which is the way Kuhner continues to propagate it, engaging in purposeful obfuscation and oversimplification. Just to give a small sense of the intricacies of what has been simplistically construed as “Chetnik collaboration” with the Fascists (again, a laughable decoy given Croatia’s opportunist, Hitler-aligned clerical-fascist bloodbath in contrast to the Serbs’ multiple, suicidal attempts to fight the Nazis including a national revolt against Serbia’s first would-be collaborationist regime), below is a paragraph from British writer John Cripps, a contributor to a 2001 book titled Action This Day. He is none too kind to the Chetniks, while nonetheless criticizing Churchill’s ultimate decision to back the Partisans. In the course of disputing the widely (and correctly) perceived notion that Churchill’s decision to abandon Mihailovic and support the Partisans came from Communist spies advising Churchill (something that Churchill would later call his biggest mistake of WWII), Cripps has the following paragraph showing the complexity of the situation that’s been distorted for our (and the distorters’) convenience:

Decrypts showed that the Italians were supplying the Chetniks with weapons and transporting them in lorries to get into position against the Partisans. In fact, during March the Germans did not advance against the Partisans or attempt any action against the Chetniks. Many years later, it became clear that there had been a ceasefire between the Germans and the Partisans, initially for the exchange of prisoners, but also because the Partisans were negotiating with the Germans for recognition as combatants, and for possible joint action against the Chetniks. Hitler put an end to the negotiations. Two Abwehr decrypts had, however, revealed that one of their agents, a German who reported as Dr Baux, was in negotiation with the Partisans, although it was not clear what the negotiations were about.

The above context is in addition to the fact that not only were Tito’s Partisans taking credit for several of Mihailovic’s victories against the Germans, misreporting to London, but just as some Croatian fascists donned Partisan uniforms to save their skins toward the end, so was there a sort of corollary wherein some Chetniks ran for their lives from marauding Partisans, alongside retreating Nazis. Nor were they necessarily “Mihailovic’s Chetniks,” though there were some. But the game is to paint all ‘chetniks’ (i.e. guerrillas) in a monolithic way so as to lump Mihaiilovic and his men — the saviors of hundreds of American pilots — in with guerrilla factions and individuals who may have had more to do with the Germans. It’s an attempt as brazen as it is insidious, given that (to offer just one factoid) a top Mihailovic commander fell out with Mihailovic because the former wanted to “assist the Germans against the Partisans, a course of action Mihailovic refused to contemplate.

Back to Kuhner’s ongoing disinformation:

As Yugoslavia disintegrated in the 1990s, Belgrade launched brutal wars of aggression against Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo. [He doesn’t even know who started the wars.] More than 250,000 were killed and nearly 2 million ethnically cleansed. Mr. Nikolic openly championed Serbia’s power grab and territorial annexations.

I had wanted to include the following sentence in my already too-long blog about the MSM’s “coverage” of the opening day of the Mladic trial: “At least now they’re printing “100,000″ Bosnia war deaths — and on all sides — rather than the “250-300,000″ they’d been reporting for a decade and a half.” But not Kuhner! He won’t be fooled by any deprogramming, and he’ll take his newspaper down with him.

In Croatia, he served in notorious Serbian volunteer units where, dressed in Chetnik uniforms and espousing ultranationalist[™] ideology, they engaged in systematic murder and destruction….

I won’t dwell on the reversals contained in that sentence, whose egregiousness can be ascertained just from the testimonies of the Canadian soldiers who witnessed the crimes by Croatians against Serbs. No, I’ll dwell on something else.

To see the regional term “Chetnik” — intended by most of its modern users as an anti-Serb slur — dripping from an American newspaper, no less from the otherwise anti-propagandistic Times, is surreal indeed. It’s an obscure, esoteric term virtually unknown to today’s Americans (who hardly even know what a Serb is except that it’s bad); a term which hasn’t really even entered the language lexicon — yet there it is in the Washington Times. With a definition thoughtfully provided for you. The only definition you need to trouble yourself with if you know what’s good for you: the one propagated by an unholy alliance of Fascists, Communists and Islamists (and originated by those who allied with the Germans to begin with). Again, it’s a testament to what can happen when someone from one of the warring sides implants himself at an American news outlet, think tank, business, film studio, institution or government office (see Capitol Hill in the 90s).

So, a term that general media are hardly familiar with is being vomited from the pages of The Washington Times, all because a speared tail wags a dog that’s obliviously allowing itself to be used as a mouthpiece. By someone who’s got a horse in a foreign race. It’s the cherry on top of the complete graft we’ve transplanted onto ourselves of the distant ethnic rivalries from, of all places, the utterly blocked-out and unsorted-out-by-Americans region called the Balkans. We don’t even realize we’re engaging in the kind of ethnic bias that runs so counter to what we fancy our values to be, still believing that here is where ethnic rivalries are forgotten.

…In short, [Nikolic] is not some flinty Serbian patriot but a radical nationalist whose election threatens the region’s security. Mr. Nikolic has not abandoned the dream of a Greater Serbia. [Never mind about the actualized dream of “a Kosovo without Serbs” as part of the now openly admitted Greater Albania project.] He claims, however, that he wants to achieve it “peacefully.” He demands that Kosovo be restored to Belgrade’s control [as I’ll demand that Jerusalem be to Israel’s when the world tries to gift it to the Arabs]; that the Bosnian Serb Republic secede from Sarajevo [as any rational being including Bosnia’s Croats want to do]; and that Croatia relinquish areas claimed by Serbian revanchists. [He means the areas that the Serbs living there for four centuries were violently cleansed from upon Croatia’s illegal secession.]

…Yet his policies will lead to only one outcome: war. He is challenging the national sovereignty and territorial integrity of Serbia’s neighbors. [Translation: Never mind about Albania, Kosovo, Croatia, Bosnia, and Slovenia (and soon Hungary) successfully challenging their neighbor Serbia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, causing these inevitable counter-claims.] Mr. Nikolic is a political thug with delusions of grandeur. Serbia is eerily reminiscent of Weimar Germany. Defeated, humiliated and sliding toward an economic abyss, Serbian voters have opted for a neo-Nazi. He is not their savior. Rather, he is leading the Serbs - again - to doom and disaster.

And Mr. Kuhner, like so many MSM “journalists” in the 90s, will do his part to make sure of it.

Only a few days after the Kuhner column appeared, another one followed, this time reprimanding Obama over his recent reference to “Polish concentration camps.” In it, Mr. Kuhner partially covered his tush by giving a single-phrase mention to the Croatian Ustashas in the midst of rattling off a dozen countries seized by Nazi fever during WWII. He then predictably — to satirical proportions — expended the rest of the paragraph re-fixating on Serbia (in case anyone thought it was any better than the rest for having resisted the Nazis the most), and made sure to include the standard anti-Serb propaganda sentence about German-occupied Serbia having become “Judenfrei” (Jew-free).

Without a touch of irony, he then gave the credit that Reagan gave to Serbs about fighting twin evils — to Croatia’s fellow Catholic Poland:

This is what makes the Poles so remarkable. Guided by their deep Catholic faith and unflinching patriotism, they stood up against the two seminal evil ideologies of the 20th century - Nazism and communism. Poland is a Christian nation. It has been crucified repeatedly throughout its long, tragic history.

Not to take anything away from Poland, but in addition to all of the above applying to Kuhner’s reviled Serbs, unlike Poland the latter have also had to contend with perpetually encroaching Islam, which they’ve historically staved off from the West. (They similarly tied up Hitler long enough to delay him in reaching Stalingrad until the Russian winter, which proved a decisive disadvantage to the Germans.)

It is often forgotten that Hitler’s victims also included millions of Slavs, Catholics, Gypsies, homosexuals and disabled people. According to Nazi racial doctrine, Slavs were deemed “subhuman” - fit only for slave labor. Hence, countless Poles and others perished at the hands of Nazi butchers.

Again, Kuhner’s hated Serbs can check off ‘All of the Above,’ and yet this list glaringly excludes “Orthodox Christians” — such as those whom his Catholic Slavs in Croatia liquidated. So he’s talking about the plight of Slavs as if the Slavs who had it worst weren’t the ones who were also under attack by their fellow Slavs.

Imagine, the subhead under the headline “Obama’s Holocaust revisionism” actually read “Pinning Nazi atrocities on Poland dishonors a loyal friend.” Again, no touch of irony about what Kuhner spends his professional life doing to our Serbian ally, to which we’ve done more than just insult.

As for that nationalist election victory in Serbia, here is just something to keep in mind when hearing or reading about “Serbianationalism™”. In addition to the fact that it’s nothing like the supremacist nationalism of those whom the West did buttress (count the non-Croats in Croatia, the non-Slovenians in Slovenia, the non-Albanians in Kosovo and the non-Muslims in Sarajevo, and compare those figures to multi-national Serbia’s ethnic minorities). What to keep in mind is that those who dare to preserve historical memory and identity are commonly called “nationalists” by a world in the process of extinguishing the nation-state as such. Nationalist is what they’ll call any American who objects when the same one-worlders come for our country too. After having practiced on Yugoslavia and Serbia.

Yet nationalism is simply the determination of a people to cultivate its own soul, to follow the customs bequeathed to it by its ancestors, to develop its traditions according to its own instincts. It is the national equivalent of the individual’s determination not to be a slave.” – Rebecca West, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, 1935

Now we know why it’s under attack.

********UPDATE*********
That paragraph from Kuhner’s second piece that listed willing Nazi collaborators then turned attention back to German-run Serbia went like this:

…Fascist regimes came to power in Italy, Spain, Vichy France, Norway, Greece, Bulgaria, Hungary, Slovakia, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia. Some of the most savage Quisling states were erected in the Balkans. Romania’s ruler, Marshal Ion Antonescu, unleashed a murderous rampage against Jews and Gypsies. In Croatia, the sadistic Ustashe led by Ante Pavelic slaughtered numerous Serbs, Jews, Gypsies and anti-fascist Croats. Contrary to myth, Serbia also had a genocidal collaborationist dictatorship. Led by Gen. Milan Nedic, Belgrade’s fascists engaged in the comprehensive extermination of the country’s Jewish population. By the summer of 1942, Serbia had become completely “Judenfrei.”

But here’s what’s wrong with lumping Nedic in with that lot, particularly with the likes of Pavelic, and Kuhner probably knows it (which is probably why he’s doing it). Reader Alex summarized the scenario in an email:

Nedic resigned from government prior to WWII because he hated how close Yugoslavia got to Germany (I read it in an American Encyclopedia yearbook from the 1930s in the library). When the war came someone had to take over the government or Germany was going to put all of Serbia under the fascist Hungarians, Bulgarians, and Albanians, so he took over to save at least rump Serbia. His government saved many Serbs and Slovenes who fled from the Nazis in Croatia, Bosnia, etc… (the Slovenes used to celebrate this in Serbia every year after the war – don’t know if they still have that annual celebration – it used to be televised), and his government secretly armed the anti-Nazi and anti-Communist Chetniks (my grandfather’s house was an arsenal where the Nedic police came to smuggle weapons to the resistance.)

Nedic hated the position he was in and said that Draza Mihailovic sacrificed his life for his people but that he (Nedic) sacrificed something that was even more important to the Serbs – his honor and his reputation – to try to save a remnant of his country. The Germans in Serbia rounded up Jews while the Serbs, like St. Nikolaj Velimirovic, hid them. (St. Nikolaj himself was later shipped to Dachau, along with the Serbian Orthodox Patriarch, while the head of the Catholic Church in neighboring Croatia was blessing the death camp overlords. Yet the Croats still like to say that St. Nikolaj was pro-German. Huh???)

After the war the Communists pushed Nedic out of a window and claimed that he committed suicide. A trial would have only embarrassed the Communists. There is no way that a willing Nazi mass murderer like Pavelic who declared war on the USA and Britain and said (to make no mistake about it) that Croatia was doing this on its own volition — and who was then rescued by the Catholic Church — with Milan Nedic, who hated the Germans and was stuck administering a government in Belgrade until war’s end, while saving refugees and arming the resistance, and then paying for it with his life. (Where was the Catholic Church to save people like him? Its help was reserved for murderers.) There were a handful of Croats who died in Jasenovac and they should be honored (I wish the rest of the Croat nation would honor their example of integrity and nobility), but to put Croats on the same level with hundreds of thousands of Serbs and tens of thousands of Jews, who were victims, while at the same time trying to equate the enthusiastic, Hitler-loving Croat Nazis with the bombed, betrayed, and beaten up Serbs in Belgrade — as equal criminals — is beyond belief. Honest to God, if he is not pathological or otherwise mentally deranged and gets a free pass because of that, you have to wonder where the souls of the ilk of Kuhner are heading.

A 2010 response to a video on a Jewish site attempting to simplify WWII Serbs and Serbia as Fascist, reads as follows. (It was posted on the Jewish Task Force website):

In this video Milan Nedic’s administration is portrayed as a Nazi-regime, which is a flagrant lie. The government of Milan Nedic was not a Nazi-government. It was a Serbian government during the Nazi-German occupation of Serbia.

There did not exist an independent Serbian state during the WW2. What was left of Serbia, was directly occupied by Germans. The other Serbian territories were annexed to Serbia’s fascist surrounding nations. The Germans were in charge of occupied Serbia. The government of Milan Nedic did not have much control in Serbia. The crimes against Serbs and Jews in occupied Serbia, were organized and perpetrated by Germans.

Milan Nedic tried to save as many as possible Serbian and Jewish lives, during the German occupation. He provided false documents to Jews to save them from [persecution]. Nedic was not a fascist. He could not beat the Germans, so he tried to save as much as possible people by closing agreements with the occupying forces.

In this film the soldiers of Milan Nedic who were royalists and not Nazis, are falsely presented as Nazis. This is funny because the soldiers are using monarchist, royal symbols and not Nazi symbols.

I think that a Jewish member should try to convince this man to stop with this propaganda. Nedic saved many Jews and this behavior is very immoral.

*****UPDATE AT BOTTOM*****

As the son of Cuban exiles, junior Florida senator Marco Rubio should be particularly sensitive to attempts at painting a people as crazed criminals, often done in service of an underlying political agenda. But in his speech last week at the Jesse Helms Center in North Carolina, Senator Rubio said, “The American armed forces have been one of the greatest forces of good….They stopped Nazism and Communism and other evils such as Serbian ethnic cleansing.”

A year after our leaders lied to us in 1999 about the particularly insidious but ultimately mythical “Operation Horseshoe” (the ethnic cleansing plan subsequently shown to have been a Croatian-assisted concoction by a resurgent Germany delivering payback to Serbs for WWII), it was the Miami Cubans’ turn.

In the Elian Gonzalez saga, the Cuban community was depicted as wild extremists and the Gonzalez family as “kidnappers” who were breaking the law, when they merely expected us to follow our own laws and give Elian due process. But the larger agenda was to deliver the boy back into Castro’s clutches, for reasons that remain mysterious to this day.

As with the Balkan wars, no one paid attention when, once the agenda was fulfilled, the truth came out. In the Gonzalez case, not only did Elian’s father Juan call ahead to tell the Miami relatives that Elian and his mother were coming, but he was speaking under duress when saying he wanted his son back in Cuba. He had also made his own attempts to leave Cuba. What caused the Cuban-Americas to go so “wild” was that word got out (but not to the wider American public) that Juan Gonzalez was seeking asylum for both himself and the boy. Most of this came out in a belatedly revealed INS memo that could have changed Elian’s fate but was ordered destroyed by then INS Commissioner Doris Meissner.

As appalling as a senator singling out one of the warring nationalities to perpetuate a long debunked lie about it, is the fact that by equalizing the fictitious ethnic cleansing with the Nazis, he reinforces the WWII inversions that we’ve been fed by the Serbs’ enemies — Croatians, Albanians and Bosniaks — all of whom sided with the Axis powers. (This of course made it doubly important to paint the Serbs as the modern-day Nazis in the 90s, since it was their stubborn WWII resistance that delayed Hitler’s attack on Stalingrad, with decisive consequences.)

The Balkans are precisely an example of where America and its military were the opposite of “a force for good,” giving wings — and continued support today — to a state ruled by fear, with an elite that is above the law and where prosecution witnesses drop out or drop dead. A “Mafia society based on ‘capture of the state’ by criminal elements,” is how the Institute for European Policy put it in 2007. This was seconded by a Foreign Policy magazine article last February titled “Thug Life”: “It is difficult to see how democracy or respect [for] the rule of law could develop and flourish amid such overt displays of American support for a corrupt and criminal leadership…The [ethnic Albanian] war crimes…have never been fully investigated — in fact, in some cases they have been covered up.”

So it’s rather rich when Rubio cites Jesse Helms and Ronald Reagan as introducing a “‘morality in foreign policy’ plank to the 1976 Republican platform [which stated,] ‘The goal of Republican foreign policy is the achievement of liberty under law….’” This, while applauding a war which was achieved by the breaking or ignoring of every international law (and also without UN or even Congressional approval). A gratuitous war whose criminal spawn was born in likewise criminal fashion, without regard for the international order or any existing norms of state craft.

There are two iconic harbingers of the force against liberty that America risked becoming, and they came in back-to-back symbolic years at the turn of the millennium: the surreal sight in 1999 of the U.S. Air Force bombing Yugoslavian children in their beds, and in 2000 the image of a Federal agent’s machine gun fixed on a six-year-old boy in the arms of the fisherman who rescued him.

The free world was not there for Elian or his father, and it was downright murderous to the Orthodox Serbs. Some might even draw the connection that in one case, we betrayed a Catholic community on Easter in service to communism, and in the other we betrayed Orthodox Christians in favor of Islamic propaganda traceable to the Bosnian Ministry of Information and Albanian disseminators. (And no, we didn’t hold the bombs on Easter in that case either, though we do so on Ramadan.)

As a Jewish conservative who vigorously defended Cuban-Americans during the Elian siege (and was offended by the mainstream defamation of them), I am sickened that Senator Rubio would turn the same kind of spear — though far more elaborate and psychologically entrenched — onto another maligned people. I was always of the hope that if ever there were a swath of Americans who could be convinced of the disinformation campaign perpetrated against the truly besieged Serbs, it was Cubans. Shame on you, Senator Rubio.

UPDATE:
Below are some relevant items about the Free World attacking Christians on Easter. Bombing Serbs on Easter had its precedent in history. Hitler bombed Serbia on Easter 1941. Germans wrote “Frohe Ostern” (”Happy Easter”) on the bombs they dropped on Serbian women and children.

This fact was not lost on our victims. Fast-forward to 1999:

Yugoslav Deputy Prime Minister, Vuk Draskovic, condemned the Nato attack as “a crime against the Serbian nation'’.

“Downtown Belgrade is on fire on the biggest Christian day of Easter,'’ he told the British satellite station Sky. ‘’The last time Belgrade was on fire [over] Easter was in 1941 when Hitler bombed it.”

BBC.com, April 3, 1999

The Harrier Hawks, which are housed in huge white tent-hangars, carry 1,000lb bombs covered with graffiti, some of which was less than friendly: “Happy Easter” and “Hope you like it!”

The Independent, March 26, 1999

I must tell you, Mr. Clinton, I was deeply saddened when I heard reports that NATO forces have written “Happy Easter” on some of the bombs dropped over Yugoslavia.

Metropolitan Archbishop PAVLOS Of the Greek Orthodox Old Calendar Church of America, in a letter dated April 1, 1999

It is interesting to note that the Clinton administration in the winter of 1998-1999 stopped its brief bombing campaign on Iraq due to the period of Ramadan on the Islamic calendar. However, both English and American warplanes continued to bomb the Serbian Christians throughout the Christian Holy Week and especially on Easter Sunday of the Orthodox Christian calendar. Some of the bombs that were dropped by English pilots had the message painted on them, “Happy Easter.”

Metropolitan Isaiah of Denver, March 24, 2002

The other grievance was who Nato was targeting. From the foreign broadcasts (CNN, SKY, BBC) the message came across loud and clear — we have no quarrel with the people of Serbia, only with the president and the army. So why, asked the people of Serbia, did you have to bomb over Easter, one of the most holy periods in the Serb calendar, as the Nazis had done in 1941? Why did we find an unexploded bomb with the words “Happy Easter” engraved, if you were on the side of the “people?”

– Unknown Questioner

Throughout May, Nato repeatedly targeted the town of Kraljevo, destroying its school and a hospital clinic. More than 20 civilians have been injured. A message on one of the bomb casings found at Kraljevo read, “Do You Still Want to Be a Serb Now?”

– “Who NATO Killed,” by Alexander Cockburn and Jeffrey St. Clair, June 15, 1999

It is one of the most underreported aspects of the bloody wars that have taken place in the Balkans: the same Clinton administration that now professes concern about the Kosovo refugee crisis promoted a similar crisis almost four years ago. In August 1995, the Clinton administration supported the Croatian Army when it drove hundreds of thousands of Serbs from Krajina…?

A major war was averted when Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic, who is now demonized as a new Hitler, failed to send his army to defend the Krajina Serbs, who had set up an independent mini-state. The U.N. says the Croatian attack included the shelling and burning of Serb villages and the bombing of refugees. The War Crimes Tribunal in the Hague is gathering evidence to determine if the Croats should be charged with war crimes. The U.S. has been slow to supply satellite images that have been requested by the prosecutors.

Walter Roberts, a retired foreign service officer, said in an April 10 column in the Washington Post, “The pictures from the borders of Kosovo have outraged the whole world. But where was the outrage when more than 300,000 Serbs were evicted by the Croatian government from the Krajina, a Croatian land inhabited by Serbs for centuries?”

Footage of Krajina Serbs loading what possessions they could onto wagons had been shown on TV, but there were no touching interviews with pathetic Serb refugees telling tales of woe in the refugee camps where many of them have lived for nearly five years. On May 5, President Clinton, addressing our troops in Germany, declared, “We have no quarrel with the Serb people….Our quarrel is with ethnic cleansing.” That was not the position he took when the Serbs were driven from Krajina.

– Reed Irvine, Accuracy in Media, May 1999

“What the former communist Vuk Draskovic was not telling the truth about,” wrote “Serbstvo,” whose research most of this last segment is, “was the last time Serbia was bombed on Easter. It was in fact Serbia’s own allies that carpet-bombed her in service to Communism, and they chose to do it on Easter Sunday of 1944. The Nazis and Allies bombed Belgrade over Easter, which is regarded as the holiest day by Orthodox Christians. Serbs would gather in greater numbers for Easter Sunday Mass than they would on any other day of the year. The Germans, British and Americans took advantage of knowing that bombing Serbs over Easter would inflict the maximum amount of civilian casualties. The Allies showed they were as cynical as the Nazis and also wrote ‘Happy Easter’ on the bombs.”

The city of Belgrade was bombed during two campaigns in World War II, the first undertaken by the Luftwaffe in 1941, and the latter by Allied air forces in 1944…Belgrade was bombed by Anglo-American air forces on April 16 and 17, 1944, which was Orthodox Easter Day. The most important unit that took part was American 15th Air Force, based in Foggia in the south of Italy. This carpet bombing raid was executed by 600 bombers flying at high altitude.

Wikipedia

[The] bombing of Belgrade on Easter Sunday 1944 was deliberate — UXO was found with [the] inscription “Happy Easter” written in Serbian. According to flight documents, bombers were heading to Romania, but UXO shows otherwise. [Belgrade’s] city core was deliberately targeted, more than
2000 civilians were killed while the damage to occupying Wehrmacht forces was negligent (several dead and wounded)

Comment Poster on FreeRepublic.com, Sept. 22, 2004

The Allies claimed Serbia was bombed for the purpose of destroying German occupying troops, but what association did Germans have with an Orthodox holiday and why were only several Germans killed compared to the thousands of Serbian civilians? How was bombing churches filled with Christian believers in Easter Mass supposed to harm the Nazis? How were they killing Germans if they were targeting churches, schools and hospitals?

– Serbstvo

It was supposed to break down the Germans but actually had destroyed Belgrade more than the German bombs. On some found bombs, it was written in Serbian Cyrillic “Happy Easter.”

eNotes

[The] campaign of bombing civilian buildings, hospitals, bridges and residential quarters was carried out without permission of the UN Security Council and is one of the major crimes at the end of the XX century. Belgrade was bombed three times more during the same century: in 1914 by Austrians and Germans, in 1941 by Hitler and in 1944 by the British Royal Air Force (on Easter day) - Serbia forgives but will never forget.

Serbian Orthodox Diocese of Raska and Prizren

Serbstvo closes with a note on Allied support for the communist takeover of Yugoslavia:

Churchill promised Tito would rule over a communist Yugoslavia. He was aware that Tito’s communist movement was not popular in Serbia (as far as Serbs went, his army was mostly composed of Bosnian and Krajina Serbs) as [those] in Serbia mostly favored Draza’s Chetniks, who were both anti-fascist and anti-communist in defense of the Monarchy. The Allies realized that the only way they could bring Tito to seize power in Yugoslavia was by crushing the Ravna Gora Movement and terrorizing civilians through carpet-bombing.

The Allies ensured that Yugoslavia would be communist after WWII, and once we defeated the Nazis we adopted many of them and proceeded to actualize parts of Hitler’s vision of the world — ostensibly to defeat Communism. So when Rubio invokes American opposition to Nazism, Communism and Serbs, let’s keep in mind that only one of those oppositions by us was full-hearted — and it wasn’t either of the first two. Unless we’re talking specifically about Ronald Reagan who — incidentally — knew the value of a Serb. Also while pondering that list — Nazism, Communism, and Serbs — let’s keep in mind that, heartbreakingly, the U.S. and her NATO allies have more in common with Nazi Germany than most would be willing to admit.

UPDATE: It occurred to me only after I posted the blog below that it is an apt reminder on the 12th anniversary of the end of the war and the start of our occupation of Serbia — June 10, 1999. In addition to the additional significance of that date (the day the Prizren League adopted the plan to create a Greater Albania in 1878 and the day in 2007 that Bush flew to Albania to give the nod for the Kosovo theft), I’ve learned today, thanks to Aleksandra Rebic, that June 10th was also the start of the Mihailovic “trial” in 1946.

In an Israel National News article that I missed during the 2009 Gaza war, writer Martin Sherman explained how NATO’s war against Serbia can be used against the internationals who terrorize Israel and Serbia:

Proportionality and hypocrisy: Why are military ops in Gaza, Kosovo judged by wildly disparate criteria? by Martin Sherman

“There is always a cost to defeat an evil. It never comes free, unfortunately. But the cost of failure to defeat a great evil is far higher.” — Jamie Shea, NATO spokesman, BBC News, May 31, 1999

It was in these words that the official NATO representative chose to respond to criticism regarding the numerous civilian casualties incurred by the alliance’s frequent air attacks during the war in Kosovo between March and June of 1999. He insisted NATO planes bombed only “legitimate designated military targets” and if civilians had died it was because NATO had been forced into military action. Adamant that “we try to do our utmost to ensure that if there are civilians around we do not attack,” Shea emphasized that “NATO does not target civilians…let’s be perfectly clear about that.”

However, hundreds of civilians were killed by a NATO air campaign, code named “Operation Allied Force” - which hit residential neighborhoods, old-aged sanatoriums, hospitals, open markets, columns of fleeing refugees, civilian buses and trains on bridges, and even a foreign embassy.

Exact figures are difficult to come by, but the undisputed minimum is almost 500 civilians deaths (with some estimates putting the toll as high as 1500) - including women, children and the elderly, killed about in 90 documented attacks by an alliance that included the air forces of Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Holland, Italy, Turkey, Spain, the UK, and the US. Up to 150 civilians deaths were reportedly caused by the use of cluster-bombs dropped on, or adjacent to, known civilian areas.

By contrast, the military losses inflicted by NATO on the Serbian forces during almost 80 days of aerial bombardment, unchallenged by any opposing air power, were remarkably low - with most estimates putting the figure at less than 170 killed.

Meanwhile, NATO forces suffered no combat fatalities! This was mainly due to the decision to conduct high altitude aerial attacks which greatly reduced the danger to NATO military personnel in the air, but dramatically increased it for the Serbian (and Kosovar) civilians on the ground. Moreover, the civilian populations of the countries participating on Operation Allied Force were never attacked or - even threatened - in any way by Serbian forces.

The significance of all this for Israel, beset as it is by a maelstrom criticism and censure regarding its military campaign in Gaza, should be starkly apparent. It raises three trenchant issues which it would fail to address to its great detriment:

1. The irrelevance of proportionality in military engagements
2. The unlimited hypocrisy of international politics
3. The disastrous incompetence of Israeli international diplomacy

The issue of proportionality, or rather, the alleged lack thereof, has been the basis for the fierce condemnation of Israel’s conduct in its military operations in Gaza because the number of Palestinians casualties far outweighs that of Israeli ones. However, the conduct of military operations in Kosovo by many of Israel’s present detractors shows that this was never a consideration or constraint which they felt bound by.

Quite the contrary, the very modus operandi they adopted - i.e. high altitude bombing - demonstrates that they deliberately aspired to disproportionality. As noted, this ensured an almost zero casualty rate among their own combatants but inevitably resulted in less accurate targeting of alleged military objectives on the ground, exposing a virtually defenseless civilian population to far greater danger and far higher casualties.

All of this serves to underscore vividly the crass hypocrisy of Israel’s critics. Indeed, in stark contrast to NATO’s willful disregard for enemy civilians, the IDF has often placed Israeli soldiers in mortal peril to prevent Palestinian civilians from being harmed. Furthermore, Israel’s use of military might has invariably been in response a tangible threat - or actual assault - on its citizens.

The blatant disregard for any semblance of proportionality by democratic belligerents and the shameless hypocrisy of their self-righteous and misplaced criticism of Israel highlight a crucial deficiency…in the overall structure of its international strategy: the incompetence - indeed impotence - of Israeli diplomacy. For the documented data on the conduct of the war in Kosovo by the world’s leading democracies should provide ample material with which to resolutely rebuff much of the pompous tirade of condemnation being hurled at Israel today.

I’m glad Mr. Sherman brought up the civilian deaths caused by NATO, and makes the point that the operation was designed to be disproportionate and imprecise while we suffered no casualties of our own from such great heights. Even with this, however, he understates the case. NATO didn’t just hit a lot of civilians. It TARGETED them. Eventually, Jamie Shea, Wesley Clark, Gen. Michael Short, and Sen. Joe Lieberman admitted this fact — the latter two boasting about it. But it goes even deeper still: When NATO found pockets in Kosovo where the Albanians hadn’t yet fled or were returning (which of course belies the claim that the Serbian plan was to empty Kosovo of its Albanian inhabitants), NATO bombs would TARGET those Albanians. (This was in furtherance of the earlier KLA-NATO-coerced exodus of Albanians and others — Albanians for one reason, and others for another: “How NATO Staged Albanian Flight during 1999 Bombing“; “Driven from Kosovo.”)

A report related to the general targeting of civilians by NATO, no longer available online, from Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR):

Serb General Blames NATO for Kosovo Casualties: Serbs and Albanians fled their homes because of NATO attacks, Vladimir Lazarević tells court.
By Marija Radovanovic in Belgrade (TU No 525, 9-Nov-07)

The man who commanded Serbia’s army in Kosovo during the war against separatist rebels denied this week that troops had forced Albanians from their homes, blaming NATO for the civilian casualties and the refugees.

As he testified in his own defence this week, Lazarevic denied having ordered his troops to use murder, rape, harassment, destruction of property and other forms of intimidation to force Albanians to leave the province….

“Both Serbs and Albanians were leaving their homes due to daily NATO attacks,” he said, adding that his units strictly obeyed the rules of war and did their best to help the surviving civilians, to enable evacuations and to even give blood transfusions.

“I personally ordered my commanders to leave all of their ongoing actions and get engaged in helping the wounded.”

…Of the more than 2,000 NATO attacks in the Kosovo region, he said 37 per cent were deliberately aimed at civilian targets.

Momčilo Bakrač, Lazarević’s lawyer, denied a mass campaign of terror had been unleashed in Kosovo.

“Although crimes did happen during the Kosovo war, they were isolated and individual acts, and by no means systematic,” he said.

Lazarević said operations in Kosovo during 1999 were intended solely to defend the province against Albanian terrorist organisations in the regions of Podujevo, Dragobilja and Drenica, and to, in his words, “neutralise terrorist actions” and “to clear the region of Albanian terrorists”.

More damningly still, we have this from the Birmingham Post of May 25, 1999:

ALLIES KILL HUNDRED IN AIR RAID ON ‘STAGING POST’ PRISON

At least 100 people were killed and 200 injured in NATO attacks on a prison in Kosovo… All buildings of Dubrava prison were destroyed and the bodies were still lying in the prison’s courtyard…An investigating judge from Pec, Mr. Vladan Bojic, accused NATO of committing the most massive murder of prisoners in modern civilization and confirmed an investigation had began.

…The Serb Media Centre said Mr. Bojic himself was slightly injured in a second raid on the prison on Sunday….NATO said an attack did take place on the prison. It said the target was legitimate because the grounds were being used as a barracks and staging area by Serbian special police accused of atrocities against ethnic Albanians. […]

There was no follow-up, at least that I’m aware of, as to whether this ‘atrocities’ charge too fell apart like 99% of the other tales, but unless we’re slow learners or trapped — as most Americans seem to be when it comes to the Balkans — in a “Groundhog Day” scenario (or “50 First Dates” or “Clean Slate“), where every new day is not built on what we’ve learned in previous days and so the same day just keeps repeating — it’s probably safe to assume there was a reason for the lack of follow-up to this story too.

Still trying to retroactively cover their rears on the civilian-targeting front, NATO countries such as the U.S. have even sent out their operatives and minions to announce before the international tribunal that there’s “No such thing as civilian target, says U.S. expert“:

“What civilian targets, there’s no such thing, targets are always military,” [U.S. colonel Geoffrey] Corn told the panel of judges [during the trial (concluded last month) of Croatian general Ante Gotovina], and went on to explain that it is always up to military commanders to appraise whether the expected military gains would outweigh possible civilian losses.

He likened the August 1995 Croatian military onslaught against ethnic Serb areas, known as Operation Storm, to the 1999 NATO attacks on Serbia, saying that orders to shell targets in the Krajina towns of Knin, Obrovac, Gračac and Drvar were comparable to NATO’s attacks, carried out with hundreds of cruise missiles and bombs, against Belgrade.

Indeed! And not defensible in either case. Yet here we have it from the horse’s mouth — defending the very crimes Sherman points out that the heavy-handed NATO is guilty of. (As the person who posted the above item asked: If civilian victims are no such things, then why did the U.S. make such a fuss
about the Bosnia and Kosovo war zones to begin with? Especially given that the Serbian war effort was far more surgical than NATO’s, with soldiers risking their lives much as the IDF does with door-to-door operations to weed out hostiles.)

I’ve been waiting more than a decade for people to finally start citing, as Sherman has done, that NATO war to say “Piss off.” First, I thought the Republicans would use it against the Democrats when the latter objected to the Iraq war on the basis that Saddam Hussein hadn’t attacked us, as well as on the basis that the Iraq war would anger the Muslim world and create more terrorists — peaceniks who supported a Democrat allying us with al Qaeda and arming and training terrorists just three years earlier simply didn’t have a leg to stand on. But the moderate Right being too shallow, and too programmed to react to a debate rather than set the terms of it, hadn’t bothered looking at the aftermath of the Democrats’ last war once cued by the liberal media to move on. Conservatives simply followed the media’s orders like the rests of the herd, and because no sustained investigation of that conflict has been conducted by any government, NGO, newspaper, court or other institution, the Right still believes all the old information that the otherwise distrusted MSM originally fed it.

In hindsight, of course, the fact that Republicans didn’t help their pro-war arguments by using the Kosovo example, is neither here nor there, given that Iraq turned out to be not about winning or Westernizing, but about submitting and Islamisizing. Ever since Iraq, rather than spend our time and resources civilizing barbarians, we’ve accepted to barbarize civilization.

I’ve also been waiting for Israel and its defenders to start using the example of the 1999 Operation Allied Force, not only to protect Israel from the precedent set by that operation, but to tell hypocritical Israel critics to buzz off — as Sherman has done. Fortunately, someone else in Israel caught on and filed this lawsuit: “Israeli Human Rights Group to Sue NATO for Attacking Serbia.” (See also “MK Eldad: Charge Spanish Officials with War Crimes in Serbia.”)

Of course, the exercise of pointing out double standards between what NATO countries are allowed to do and what their targets are allowed to do is laughable — since double standards are the whole point.

In 2001 six Yugoslav citizens brought a suit against NATO to the European Court for Human Rights, over the 16 civilians that NATO targeted and killed when it bombed Belgrade TV, the case being that the attack breached Europe’s human rights charter. The court threw the case out on the grounds that the country attacked wasn’t a signatory to the European Convention of Human Rights — even though the listed defendants were. (What was problematic, however, was that the two most guilty NATO members were excluded from the complaint — U.S. and Canada — since they were also not signatories.)

Two years earlier, Belgrade went to the International Court of Justice to stop the NATO attack and was rejected, with the ICJ ruling that Yugoslavia had no standing (i.e. that it wasn’t a member of the UN, since its membership had been put on hold during the country’s breakup — never mind that it was a founding member). Quoting Diana Johnstone from 1999:

A few liberals timidly criticized the NATO bombing on the imaginary grounds that it might provoke Serbian “terrorism”. In reality, throughout the air strikes there was never the slightest hint of any propensity on the part of Serbs to take up terrorism. On the contrary, Serbs were notably shocked by the flagrant violations of the legal order constructed primarily by the very Western powers who were now violating it, and a number of Yugoslavs both in Serbia and in the Diaspora, have tried to seek legal redress. The Yugoslav government itself tried on April 29 to institute proceedings at the International Court of Justice in The Hague against NATO governments for a broad range of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Western media, in brief reports, let it be known that such an initiative was “not serious”. It was finally thrown out of court because the Genocide Convention, the legal basis for Belgrade’s suit, has never been recognized by the United States as applying to itself, although Washington is willing to let it apply to others.

In 2003, however, the ICJ easily agreed to hear the genocide case that Bosnia’s wartime Izetbegovic regime filed in 1993 against Yugoslavia for the “siege” of Sarajevo, deciding it had jurisdiction and that Serbia was subject to it, and “rejecting Yugoslavia’s claim that it does not fall under the court’s jurisdiction” — the very basis that the European Human Rights Court had used to throw out the 2001 suit on behalf of NATO’s TV station victims. So, suddenly the non-existent, has-no-standing, non-state of Yugoslavia — as it had been in 1993 — was nonetheless suable, and in 2003 no less, with “Yugoslav lawyers argu[ing] that the nation was readmitted as a new state in 2000.” At least that was the standard phrasing used by the AP when in fact Yugoslavia had been stripped of its UN status in 1992 (staying on the member roll as a technicality), and after the 2000 coup the new government applied for membership as a new country, which Serbia-Montenegro was granted. This is a FACT, not something “Yugoslav lawyers argue.” So a new country was being held responsible for what Yugoslavia did or didn’t do while it had no standing as a UN member. It’s all very “Alice in Wonderland”: a country is recognized as existing or treated as non-existing, depending on the needs of the New World Order. (In the end, the case became about Srebrenica in 1995 rather than Sarajevo in ‘92-’93, as one count after another got tossed out for lack of substance. Against all odds, trends, and political pressures, in 2007 the court determined that Serbia was not guilty of committing genocide, only of not doing enough to prevent a genocide by the Bosnian Serbs — a genocide whose designation as such the court did not investigate but merely accepted the International Criminal Tribunal’s word for it.)

In another example, the ICJ also easily accepted to hear Croatia’s genocide suit against Serbia in 2008, and the whole tango was replayed: “[Serbia] said the former Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was not party to the UN’s genocide convention nor even a member of the UN when the complaint was filed [in 1999]. Most of the alleged crimes were committed before the current republic was formed, it also argued. However, ICJ judge Rosalyn Higgins said the 17-strong panel had dismissed Serbia’s challenge to the court’s competence.

Serbia’s expectations were based on an ICJ ruling of 2004 when the court ruled it could not try Serbia’s case against ten NATO countries….But more recently, the ICJ said it had the jurisdiction to hear the genocide case brought by Bosnia-Herzegovina against Serbia.

And, finally, we also have the example of both the ICTY and EULEX claiming no jurisdiction when it comes to the murder-for-organs that the KLA was engaging in before, during and after the Kosovo war.

But it is a loathsome practice the way the U.S., while insulating itself from these Orwellian international institutions, zealously wields them as a weapon against others, ensuring that while we — for now — are spared the Kafka existence, others are living the nightmare. It has come to a point where international justice surpasses even the predictable levels of farce, as the above-cited Johnstone article illustrates:

Nobody doubts that the NATO air strikes against Yugoslavia initiated on March 24, 1999, were in flagrant violation of international law on numerous counts…On May 7, a team of lawyers from Canada and Europe submitted a brief to Louise Arbour, the Canadian chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia, accusing U.S. and other NATO officials of war crimes including “wanton destruction of cities, towns, or villages, or devastation not justified by military necessity, attack, or bombardment, by whatever means, of undefended towns, villages, dwellings, or buildings”…

This and a number of other initiatives by international jurists pointing to the illegality of the NATO action were widely ignored by mainstream media. Instead, considerable space was given to pundits developing the notion of “humanitarian intervention” which henceforth, it was said, superseded the outworn notion of “national sovereignty”.

In fact, there is absolutely nothing new about appeals to a “higher justice” to excuse violating the law. Nineteenth century imperialist conquests were usually undertaken “to defend” some group or other, and Hitler (the real one) marched into Czechoslovakia and invaded Poland, setting off World War II, in order to rescue allegedly abused German ethnic minorities. Respect for national sovereignty and territorial integrity were incorporated into international law after World War II precisely in order to protect weaker nations from humanitarian crusades of this sort.

The big news was, of course, the indictment of Milosevic…Some of the charges were substantially identical to those filed earlier against the officials responsible for the NATO bombing, to wit: “the widespread shelling of towns and villages; the burning of homes, farms and businesses, and the destruction of personal property”.

The indictment of Milosevic and the others was hardly the act of an impartial body, rising above the conflict between mighty NATO and little Yugoslavia. Ms Arbour signed warrants for the arrest of Milosevic and the Serbian leaders on the basis of material turned over to her the day before by a party to the conflict, the United States government…

Part of Arbour’s job as chief prosecutor has been fund-raising in the “international community”, notably among the governments of NATO member states. She and chief Judge Gabrielle Kirk McDonald (a former Federal Judge in Texas) frequently appear in public with Madeleine Albright (”the mother of the Tribunal” in the words of Judge McDonald, who before the war had already judiciously branded Yugoslavia “a rogue state”) and praise the U.S. for its financial and other support to the Tribunal. When asked on May 17 what would happen if NATO itself were brought before the Tribunal, NATO spokesman Jamie Shea retorted that without NATO countries there would be no such tribunal, since it was the NATO countries which had been in the forefront of getting it set up and which funded and supported its activity on a daily basis. The International Criminal Tribunal gets material as well as political support from the United States government, other NATO governments, financial tycoon George Soros and even private corporations. If the Clinton administration cannot count on “higher justice”, it may get a helping hand from hired justice.

In July, the Connecticut-based International Ethical Alliance also filed charges against President Clinton and Defense Secretary William Cohen for “non-defensive aggressive military attacks on former Yugoslavia”. At the same time, IEA general counsel Jerome Zeifman called for the dismissal of prosecutor Arbour, charging her with “selective prosecution by intentionally failing to consider and act on evidence which incriminates defendants Clinton and Cohen, […] conflicts of interest, or the appearance thereof, in receiving compensation from funds contributed in whole or in part by governments of NATO; and bias in favor of the attacks by NATO on former Yugoslavia”. Zeifman called for replacement of the prosecutor and recusal of five judges, including McDonald, and selection of a truly independent prosecutor as well as new judges and staff from non-NATO countries who would not be compensated directly or indirectly by funds from NATO countries. Such a truly neutral tribunal, suggested the IEA, could then go on to weigh the charges against leaders on both sides, including Milosevic, Clinton and the rest.

In April 2009 Amnesty International also took note of NATO’s impunity — specifically with regard to the bombing of Serbian Radio-Television: “Ten years after NATO forces bombed the Serbian state television and radio (Radio Televisija Srbije - RTS), no one has been brought to justice for this serious violation of international humanitarian law committed by NATO….”

Closing with some quotes:

Even in Kosovo, I couldn’t escape the sound of Mr. Shea’s voice on satellite TV. It haunted me at the strangest times, denying things I knew to be true, insisting on others that I had seen were false.

Los Angeles reporter Paul Watson

Amid increasing reports of civilian casualties, NATOs top military commander, Gen. Wesley Clark, said the alliance was operating under tight rules of engagement, targeting military sites and not civilians. We know which villages are occupied. We know which are not, and were going exclusively after military targets. We would never do it any other way, Clark said on CNNs Late Edition.

CNN

The 9/11 Commission — notwithstanding its many faults — listed the occasions when Clinton could have ordered an attempt to kill or capture bin Laden based on information provided by CIA officers and on many occasions corroborated by signals intelligence or overhead imagery. On one day in particular, Clinton had the U.S. Air Force drop tons of bombs on the Serbs — who had not harmed or even threatened Americans — while refusing to sanction an attack on bin Laden.

– retired CIA officer Michael F. Scheuer, in a letter to American Conservative magazine, via Greg Pierce at Washington Times, Oct. 9, 2006

How can Western societies that pride themselves in their justice system support such an unaccountable court?

comment poster “Hainer” at Atlas Shrugs blog