Saturday, May 14, 2016

The Karadzic Conviction -- adapted from an article in French by Alexis Troude

[Still commemorating NATO's 1999 terror-bombing (Newsweek's term) of Yugoslavia/Serbia over Kosovo, my Franco-Serb friend Alexis Troude sent me his article about 'the end' of the Radovan Karadzic trial.  Nearly 20 years after the wars of post-Soviet conquest in Central Europe and Great Lakes Africa, the sclerotic culture of Private Waste Capital continues arrogantly to display amoral pointlessness, its unself-reflective ignorance, its indecent intergalactic death-wish. --mc]

The Karadzic Conviction Speaks Volumes on the Sins of the “International Community” in the Balkans

On the same day of the 17 year commemoration of NATO’s terror-bombing of Serbia, which caused more than 2600 deaths and very important material damage, the political leader of the Bosnian Serbs, Radovan Karadzic, was found guilty before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former-Yugoslavia.  For the Serbs, this represents an acute trauma; for the Bosnian victims, it is still not enough.

The ICTY, instead of carrying out its putative aim of healing the wounds of the Balkan wars of the 1990s, has opened them even further and done so in such a way as to put them beyond repair with regard to the near daily problems that have visited Bosnia, Montenegro or Macedonia for the last few months.  But above all, this media-juridical agitprop has year after year, with each commemoration of the dramatic suffering of the Serbs, allowed Western leaders to wipe their memories clean of their own responsibilities in the destruction of Yugoslavia.  Yet again, Human Rights are only applicable in certain cases and then strictly for the unrelenting justification of the double standard applied to the Serbs by the “International Community.”

      The ICTY is leading a judicial action against the Serbs

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid al Hussein, proclaimed a day of victory with the Karadzic conviction:  “The message of the trial is that no one is above the law.”  Radovan Karadzic, who was called by “the mainstream media”, even before his 2008 capture, the “Butcher of the Balkans”, a handle hung on other 1990s Serb leaders like Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic or JNA General Ratko Mladic, has thus been condemned to spend the rest of his life in prison; as a former ICTY prosecutor put it, “a forty year bid is the same as the death penalty.”  At the same moment, Salah Abdeslam, the planner of the 13 November 2015 Paris attacks that left 130 dead, is given more deferential treatment.  A debate has developed in the media since the Moroccan/Belgian’s arrest over whether or not he will be found guilty since he was a member of an Islamic network; in the media, at no time has he been subjected to public condemnation or even described pejoratively.  Here you can see the concept of Human Rights from which certain States in the 1930s would not stray: a Slav must be a priori a sub-human.


In a March 25th interview with the French daily Le Monde, ICTY prosecutor Serge Brammets made a strong point:  “We don’t go after any group, in any country, only individuals.”  But in the same interview ALL the names he cites as being war criminals are Serbs:  Karadzic, Mladic and Milosevic.  Without realizing it, as if by reflex, the ICTY prosecutor thinks only of Serb leaders when entertaining the common opinion held since the end of the Yugoslav wars; the Serbs are collectively guilty for the wars in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo.  But the numbers are very clear: in the Bosnian conflict, of the 96,000 dead, 64,995 were Bosnian Muslims, 30,100 were Orthodox Serbs, and 7,338 were Catholic Croats, conforming to the proportions of the population established by the most recent official census of 1991.  In Kosovo, of the 8,000 dead, 4,800 were Albanians and 2,700 were Serbs; the rest were from various minorities.  So, in each case these were truly civil wars; but for the Prosecutor and the entire official media system, this was not so; for them the Serbs were unarguably and a priori guilty.

But the media is carefully hiding the recent tragedies suffered by the Serbs to the benefit of certain leaders who have had difficulty accepting their own strategic errors.  In Croatia, no one speaks of the 230,000 Serbs driven out of their homes in the four days  of August 1995 during ‘Operation Storm’, the largest example of ‘ethnic cleansing’ in Europe since 1945.  In Kosovo it is never mentioned that since 1999, 175,000 Serbs and 80,000 Roma have been forced to flee their native land under hideous conditions.  The U.S., which supported the Bosnian Muslim army from 1993 and the Croatian army from the spring of 1995, will never go back on its positions, and that is why at each commemoration of a Serbian tragedy since 1995, they drag out the ‘Genocide at Srebrenica’.  NATO, supported by the nations of Western Europe, knows very well the irreparable damage wreaked on Serbia during the spring 1999 bombing, conducted at once in violation of International Law and against all the peoples and minorities of the province of Kosovo-Métochia, whether Albanian, Serb, Roma or Gorani.  But, with the cover-image of Human Rights icon Bernard Kouchner, tight partner with the Thaci mafia, and with eyes wide shut to the vicious activities of the KLA, Western leaders shamelessly covered up these facts with the toxic fog of a “struggle against the Stalinist strongman Milosevic.”

Slobodan Milosevic                               Laurent Gbagbo   

The old Nazi lockup at Scheveningen, in The Hague, twenty years after the wars over Yugoslavia, are fuller than were the cells of the Nuremberg Tribunal a year after the end of WWII.  Serb leaders Biljana Plavsic, Momcilo Krajisknik and General Vladimir Lazarevich, have already spent 12, 13, and 14 years, respectively, in that Dutch holding pen.  More than 80 Serb leaders have passed through there since 1997, the date of the creation of the ICTY; some have even died there.  While at the same time, the Tribunal acquitted Croat Lt-General Ante Gotovina on 16 November 2012, though he had been charged with ordering the massacre of 150 Serb civilians in the Krajina in August 1995.  The final decision of the ICTY was so surprising that it provoked a vehement protest from ex-ICTY Prosecutor Carla del Ponte:  “I am shocked . . . the credibility of the Tribunal was called into question.”

Ramush Haradinaj, the reptilian Prime Minister of the auto-proclaimed independent Kosovo, was acquitted on 3 April 2008 of all charges for crimes committed in the Drenica Valley in 1998 in less than two months time at The Hague, with nine prosecutions witnesses being killed, or turning up dead under suspicious circumstances, in the course of his badly managed trial at the ICTY.  The KLA officer’s trial went off so badly that Haradinaj was rearrested in 2015 and is currently awaiting a new judgment.  Not to mention Hashim Thaci, today’s Prime Minister of Kosovo, who has never been bothered by the ICTY.  Though he, too, was involved in the massacres in the Drenica Valley, as well as in the trafficking of human organs harvested from young Serb pows during the Kosovo war of 1998-99, for which two key pieces of the Prosecution’s evidence appear in a report from the Council of Europe.  But not so for the Tribunal: an operation of such ruthless grotesquerie as to make their Nazi forebears jealous didn’t seem to bother the ICTY or the “International Community”, all about the quick punishment of the Serbs.

Prevarications and About-faces by the ICTY favor Muslim Officials in Bosnia

Since 1997, fifty-two guilty verdicts have been delivered by the ICTY against Serbs and seven against Croats; in 2001, thirty-four Serb military officers or politicians were arrested in Bosnia-Herzegovina and imprisoned at The Hague.  Certain of them have since died in custody at The Hague.  While during this same period Muslim leaders and warlords have barely been bothered by the ICTY.   Thus, Naser Oric, a former commander of the Bosnian-Muslim forces in Srebrenica, was tried by the ICTY for war crimes committed on Orthodox Christmas 1993 in the Serb villages around Srebrenica.  French General Philippe Morillon, commander of the UN forces in Srebrenica, described these acts:  “On Orthodox Christmas night, the holiest night in January 1993, Naser Oric led raids on Serb villages. . . .  There were severed heads, horrific massacres committed by the forces of Naser Oric in all the surrounding villages.”  But Oric was acquitted in July 2007, to the great anger of the Bosnian Serbs, who saw in this juridical act an expression the the sort of biased vassal-justice common in the U.S.  However, his case is still not settled and could revive bad memories of the 1990s.  Naser Oric was arrested by a Swiss court and charged again in June 2015 with war crimes committed in and around Sarajevo in July 1992.  Nevertheless, while awaiting trial, Naser Oric was named advisor to Bosnia Prime Minister Bakir Izetbegovic!

Because light has never been shone on certain events that took place at the beginning of the Bosnian conflict, the president of the Bosnian Serb Republic Milorad Dodik has demanded an independent international investigation  The two Markale public massacres were committed either by the Bosnian Serb Republic or by the Muslim Army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, during the siege of Sarajevo, at the soft-target Markale marketplace.  The first attack, 5 February 1994, caused 68 dead and 144 wounded, while the second, on 28 August 1995, caused 37 dead and 90 wounded.  In both cases, the origins of the shelling were in question.  The Serb forces engaged in the city claimed they were not the source of the mortar attacks, accusing the B-H Army of bombarding its own people to push NATO into an intervention.  At the time of the first attack, expert-reports were unable to determine with any certainty the origins of the shelling.  However, this attack on a quarter in central Sarajevo would serve as a pretext for NATO to carry out the first ‘out-of-zone’ operations in its 45 year history:  by bombing the lines of the Army of the Republika Srpska in the summer of 1995, NATO took the side of the Bosnian Muslims led by Alija Izetbegovic.

But on 16 December 2015, a defense witness in the ICTY trial of General Ratko Mladic seemed to point out a flaw in the official version of the Markale massacre story.  The 5 February 1994 mass killing at the Markale marketplace in central Sarajevo left 66 dead and 140 wounded; the responsibility for this slaughter was until then laid to the Serb army in Bosnia.  The anonymous witness (GRM-11), a former body guard to Alija Izetbegovic, claimed on 16 December 2015 that three high-ranking Bosnian Muslim officials had provoked the Markale massacre:  President Izetbegovic, General Sefer Halilovic and the Reis-el Ulema (the highest Muslim cleric) Mustafa Ceric.

The Reis-el-Ulema Mustafa Ceric also stated, according to witness GRM-116: “Everyday 50 to 70 of our Bosnian Muslims die without anyone saying a word.  If in one spot more than 200 of ours die, the whole world will know.”

The strategy of Internationalizing the Bosnian question paid off:  By imputing malevolence to Serb leaders, the Muslim party tried to cover up its own foul deeds.

The real objectives of the ICTY in this new Cold War

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former-Yugoslavia was created to conduct historic trials; but as a product of the Western powers, it puts forth an image of Anglo-Saxon law and, worse, makes constant threats against public liberties.

But especially because of the length of the trials and the application of a ‘double standard’, the ICTY has been transformed into an Inquisitional ‘Star Chamber’:  along the same line, instead of working to heal the wounds of a more than twenty-year old war, the systematic rulings against the Serbian military and political elites from the 1990s can only push, with a boomerang effect, a part of the populations into the arms of Serbian nationalists on the one hand, and Muslim nationalists on the other.

Fundamentally, should not the real significance of these one-sided judgments have been to correct the errors made by the West in the wars on Yugoslavia?  In fact, all  these relentless judicial actions are merely a way for the United States and its partners not only to be done with a world where there is an equilibrium of non-alignment between the West and East, but also to end the dirty business begun by the Dayton Accords in 1995.  By teasing this dog with his boner against the Serb leadership during the Bosnian conflict, was not the ultimate goal  to call into question the very existence of the Serbian Republic of Bosnia, which is now acting as a rampart against the expansion of Islam in the Balkans?  By punishing the Serbs but not the Muslims, Bosniaks nor Albanians, is the goal not, in practicing this kind of ostrich politics, to make the world forget that Islamic terrorism in Europe was born in Bosnia early in the 1990s, at a time when a certain bin Laden, holder of a Bosnian passport, was received by Bosnian president Alija Izetbegovic, author of the “Islamic Declaration”, which wanted to wipe Christianity off the Balkan map?

In its rage against the Serbs, the ICTY showed that it is a political court in the service of its NATO and U.S. sponsors.  Its raison d’être is the suppression of all evidence of its supporters’ involvement in the resurgence radical Islam in Europe: like the public attention that Madeleine Albright, Clinton’s Secretary of State—the first woman to hold that position—aroused with her choice to support the Albanian gangster Hashim Thaci in 1998 at the Rambouillet talks, or like Bernard Henri Levy received Bosnian Muslim president Alija Izetbegovic in Paris in January 1993.  But the wind is known to change direction, and these leaders who themselves are guilty of crimes against the peoples of Bosnia, Serbia and Kosovo, could one day see fate turned against them.


[Translated from the French by CM/P]

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