Vojislav Seselj Case: UN Criminal Tribunal Delivers Great Victory For Violent Lunatics Everywhere

ICTY Trial Chamber 31 March 2016 Delivering Judgment in Vojislav Seselj Case PHOTO: Screenhot ICTY.org

ICTY Trial Chamber
31 March 2016
Delivering Judgment in Vojislav Seselj Case
PHOTO: Screenhot ICTY.org

 

Travesty of justice and biased blindness to facts

Despite the fact that the Serbian ultra-nationalist pusher of a land-grabbing-by-any-means Greater Serbia, Vojislav Seselj, sowed and incited hatred against Croats and Muslims (Bosniaks) in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina during early 1990’s, recruited Serb Chetnik, utterly cruel and barbaric, bloodthirsty militia in Croatia, that culminated in a long, brutal war of genocide, ethnic cleansing, mass murder, rape, concentration camps, pillage… the Trial Chamber of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in the Hague pronounced him Thursday 31 March 2016 innocent of all charges. The majority of judges, Judge Lattanzi dissenting, concluded “that the objective of the creation of Greater Serbia was more of a political venture than a criminal project… that crimes had been committed by Serbian forces in the process, but that they were not inherently linked to the fulfilment of the purpose of Greater Serbia…”

Vojislav Seselj Photo: N1

Vojislav Seselj
Photo: N1

Two out of three judges (Judge Jean-Claude Antonetti, Judge Mandiaye Niang) – Judge Flavia Lattanzi dissenting -dared to conclude the above  knowing the facts that Seselj acted in times of Slobodan Milosevic’s Serbia that called upon ethnic cleansing and creation of ethnically pure regions of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina; knowing that it was Seselj who shouted in 1991 to Serbs picking up weapons to attack Croatia that “no Ustasha can leave Vukovar alive…” (calling all Croats Ustasha – a WWII political independence movement in Croatia); knowing that only one week before the same Tribunal (ICTY) convicted Serb Radovan Karadzic, the wartime leader of the Bosnian Serbs, to 40 years imprisonment on charges of murder, extermination and genocide (based on same Greater Serbia “political venture”)!
Furthermore, the majority judgment argues that Seselj’s men might have been present in contested regions (regions of Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina), not to force Bosniak Muslims and Croats out of areas claimed for a Greater Serbia, but on “humanitarian grounds”. So, his calls for murder, extermination and ethnic cleansing (acted upon by his men) were simply a means of “galvanising Serb forces”.

 

Can you believe this travesty of justice and blindness to facts!?

 

His men followed his calls – murdered, raped, forcefully deported, imprisoned, humiliated, plundered…and that was “OK” according to the two judges because it was a political venture! It was “galvanizing” the political venture!

 

The “political venture” ICTY Trial Chamber shamefully endorses

As a reminder, the indictment against Seselj included “the participation in a joint criminal enterprise (JCE). The aim of the JCE was for the permanent forcible removal of a majority of the Croat, Muslim and other non-Serb civilian populations from parts of Croatia, BiH and from the province of Vojvodina in the Republic of Serbia. Acting alone and in concert with other members of the JCE, Šešelj is alleged to have participated in the recruitment, formation, financing, supply, support and direction of Serbian volunteers connected to the SRS and/or Serbian Chetnik Movement. He is also accused of having participated in the planning and preparation of the take-over of towns and villages in Croatia and in a number of municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), and the subsequent forcible removal of the majority of the non-Serb population from those areas. In addition, he stands accused of having recruited Serbian volunteers connected to the SRS and indoctrinated them with his extreme ethnic rhetoric so that they engaged in the forcible removal of the non-Serb population in the targeted territories through the commission of crimes as specified in the indictment, with particular violence and brutality.

Finally, the indictment states that, in his inflammatory speeches, he instigated Serb forces to commit crimes, encouraged the creation of a homogeneous “Greater Serbia” by violence, and thereby participated in war propaganda and incitement of hatred towards non-Serb people…”

Vojislav Seselj early 1990's inciting to murder and ethnic cleansing in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina

Vojislav Seselj
early 1990’s inciting to
murder and ethnic cleansing
in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina

The crimes he was indicted for, he incited and called for, did actually occur and include:
• the deportation or forcible transfer of tens of thousands of Croat, Muslim and other non-Serb civilians from large areas in BiH, Croatia and Serbia (Croats living in Serbia/Vojvodina region in particular and Muslims in Kosovo region;
• the murder of many Croat, Muslim and other non-Serb civilians, including women and elderly persons, as well as the deliberate destruction of homes, other public and private property, cultural institutions, historic monuments and sacred sites of the Croat, Muslim and other non-Serb civilian populations in the municipality of Vukovar in Croatia, and in the municipalities of Zvornik, “Greater Sarajevo”, Mostar and Nevesinje in BiH;
• the torture, beating, robbery, sexual assaults, and perpetuation of inhumane living conditions against Croat, Muslim and other non-Serb civilians by Serb soldiers during capture and in the detention facilities;
• the direct and public denigration through “hate speech” of the Croat, Muslim aand other non-Serb populations in Vukovar Zvornik and Hrtkovci on the basis of their ethnicities

 

Would Adolf Hitler be acquitted?

This acquittal of Seselj of all charges, not even mentioning complicity and accessory to crimes, does cause one to conclude (as a colleague blogger Vladimir Lusic did) that (using this ICTY judgment as a precedent) Adolf Hitler would be found innocent of all charges also. Hitler also delivered loud and strong political speeches, talked about the greatness of the Third Reich, decided which ethnic group should live and which should die in the name of the Third Reich, held a gun at his waist from time to time…just like Seselj! Only Seselj didn’t have the Third Reich – for him it was Greater Serbia.
Evidence has it that Seselj did much more than engage in politics. His militia was widely feared as murderers, rapists and looters. In the Croatian war in 1991, Seselj said his men had used a rusty spoon to scoop out the eyes of their enemies, though he later claimed this was black humour.
When they marched into Vukovar in 1991, intent on murdering as many Croats as they could Seselj’s militia sang: “Slobo, Slobo, send us some salad, there will be meat we will slaughter the Croats” (Slobo meaning Slobodan Milosevic). And sure enough by 18 November 1991 Vukovar was ethnically cleansed of Croats and other non-Serbs and hundreds perished in genocidal mass murders – other places in Croatia and BiH soon suffered the same destinies.

 

And remember: all Croatia wanted to do was to secede from communist Yugoslavia!

1991 - Vojislav Seselj and Dragan Vasiljkovic lead the way to mass murder and ethnic cleansing in Croatia

1991 – Vojislav Seselj and
Dragan Vasiljkovic
lead the way to mass murder and ethnic cleansing in Croatia

Wide and serious worldwide ramifications for international justice

It’s not far fetched to say that the ICTY judges’ (who delivered such a judgment) reasoning will have wide and serious ramifications for the international justice. Such a judgment endorses all political “ventures” even those that incite hatred and mass murder and genocide… Will the coalition of allies dare to fight against IS in the Middle East from now on, for example?
The verdict already encourages nationalist Serbs to argue that their side did nothing wrong in the war. Jubilation in the streets of Belgrade and elsewhere has been ecstatic – the Serbs sentenced at The Hague so far for crimes against humanity, war crimes … do not seem to matter now! Serbian Republic political entity within Bosnia and Herzegovina, created on genocide for which Karadzic received 40 years imprisonment last week is now just about pronounced acceptable part of Greater Serbia! The arguments brought down by the majority judges at the ICTY in Seselj’s case will, without doubt, be matched by all political ventures throughout the world, no matter what gruesome destinies and sufferings they bring to innocent people.

 

The arguments have dumped the right to self-determination of every nation into the garbage bin.

Even if the ICTY Prosecutor, under Serge Brammertz, may have done a very sloppy job in Seselj’s case during and before the trial, as the judges might suggest, and this sloppiness may have been purposeful, the judgment is still outrageous and shocking. Let’s hope Brammertz’s team do some serious work on identifying grounds for an appeal against this judgment and if it doesn’t then Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina governments need to find those grounds, quick smart.

 

As Luka Misetic, US based attorney who represented Croatian General Ante Gotovina at the ICTY, reminds us: “There is little doubt about Seselj’s role in Joint Criminal Enterprise to create Greater Serbia by means of displacement of the non-Serb civilian population. This was already confirmed by the Trial Chamber in the Martic Judgment (Milan Maric, 2007, PDF), which at paragraph 446 found: ‘The Trial Chamber therefore finds that at least Blagoje Adzic, Milan Babic, Radmilo Bogdanovic,Veljko Kadijevic, Radovan Karadzic, Slobodan Milosevic, Ratko Mladic, Vojislav Seselj, Franko ‘Frenki’ Simatovic, Jovica Stanisic, and Captain Dragan Vasiljkovic participated in the furtherance of the above-mentioned common criminal purpose.’”
One finds it difficult to accept that the two out of three judges who delivered an exonerating verdict for Seselj seemingly decided to ignore the previous findings of its own Tribunal on the matter and is getting away with it.

In the Twitter words of Eric Gordy, a London based sociologist and reportedly very knowledgeable about war crimes in the Balkans, the Seselj verdict is “a great victory for bloated, violent lunatics everywhere.” Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A. Ps. (Syd)

Comments

  1. Unbelievable. A sad day for human rights, justice and common sense.

    Like

    • Mind boggles, Christoph – this UN tribunal seems to look at same facts with different eyes depending on which case it’s dealing with at any one moment. This one though is a shocker!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It is horrible and a travesty, as you mentioned, Ina. So sorry bad things still go on around the world. Hard to press “Like” but I did it in support of your position!

    Like

    • Of course Robin – and just as a temporary measure I am so glad to hear the Croatia’s minister for internal affairs has declared Seselj as persona non grata in Croatia – the man is not permitted to enter Croatia.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree, this was a travesty of justice. What a shame.

    Like

  4. Could we send Trump here for trial next? Please? Before he commits even more horrible crimes, than being a credible contender for president of the united states.
    I think you do know my grandfather was from Sophia, Bulgaria.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes I do know re your grandfather, Cindy, from previous posts 🙂 as to Trump and those who are on their way to a trial…I’m afraid unless something is done fast to balance these lunatic verdicts the world is well on the way to ruination…

      Like

  5. Mariette says:

    Croatia has announced it would mount its own case against Seselj! Has banned him from entering Croatia! Good responding so far as it is obvious justice cannot be entrusted to international political bodies in the face of so much evidence which steers in the opposite direction to this verdict’s one

    Like

  6. If Croats were jubilant at the acquittal of generals Gotovina and Markac why can’t Serbs be jubilant for the acquittal of Seselj – do you think you’re better than Serbs

    Like

    • Oh Rajko, which rock are you crawling from under…the ICTY Appeals chamber acquitted Gotovina and Markac on evidence that did not support the charges and Seselj, has not had his appeal yet so we need to wait for due process to deliver a final verdict, but regardless of that the evidence in Seselj’s case in ample to support incitement to hatred, murder, ethnic cleansing etc, which Gotovina and Markac never did! So get your brain in the right mood if possible and consider…

      Like

  7. What I have just read defies logical thought…I am shocked..

    Like

  8. I’m amazed they can call themselves Justices because that’s certainly not what has happened in this case.How can anything but a sensible verdict be pronounced after the findings of their own tribunal. This verdict is ludicrous.
    Even worse is that he’ll probably be free during any appeal process and feted as a hero in his own homeland.
    xxx Huge Hugs Ina xxx

    Like

    • Well in that case if that happens, David – I want to stay far far far away from where he is and I’d fight hard to stop people like him affect the lives of my own family – Serbia can have him! Big hugs

      Like

  9. At times in life, when you hear how some cases are being judge even with clear evidence the judge(s) will pretend not to see it. It’s like the judgement has been done before appearing in court. I pray for God’s divine judgement.

    Like

    • So astute osarobohenry, it’s been quite a while the court released him home under pretense of terminal illness, he did not even return to be there for verdict – my view is they may have made their minds up way back then…and now these same courts would want people to think that inciting to hatred and crime is a crime itself…but apparently not so for everyone … most disturbing

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Vojislav SS-lj

    Like

  11. It’s so hard to stomach such injustice. Some of the judges in the world are nothing but criminals themselves.

    Like

    • It would seem that way, Anna – it might be called “accessory after the fact” or something like that when one covers up the crimes in one way or another, even with a court judgment…

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Wilkinson says:

    The man is a lunatic and the Hague has just withdrawn medication from him so he can do more damage – only a month ago he stated in an interview that there were a lot of Serbian volunteers who died defending the nation’s freedom – When did Serbia lose it’s freedom? When did anyone attack Serbia’s territory like it did Croatia’s and Bosnian…agh, so distressing to see this

    Like

    • Yes Wilkinson it’s distressing to listen and see the victim “cries” Serbia and its politicians enter into …to try and win some support for its greed for other people’s lands

      Like

  13. warofroses says:

    ICTY Prosecutor statement: We fully understand that many victims and communities will be disappointed by the Trial Chamber’s judgment. We will carefully review the Trial Chamber’s reasoning that led to this outcome, including the dissenting opinion and the Trial Chamber’s findings that depart from the consistent jurisprudence of the Tribunal.

    We will then determine whether there are grounds to appeal the judgment. It should be recalled that an indictment and arrest warrants are currently pending against three of Šešelj’s associates, including two members of his defence team, for allegedly having threatened, intimidated, offered bribes to, or otherwise interfered with two Prosecution witnesses.

    In addition, Šešelj has been convicted three times of contempt of court for revealing the identities of protected Prosecution witnesses and sentenced to a total of 4 years and 9 months imprisonment for those crimes.
    http://www.diplomatmagazine.nl/2016/03/31/prosecutor-vs-judgement-of-vojislav-seselj/

    What a lame statement that also hides attempts to try and justify the prosecution’s salary in this case… disgusting!

    Like

  14. Yes, indeed, a victory for lunatics everywhere – gross injustice, gross

    Thank You, Ina, for sharing

    Ever

    john

    Like

  15. I am sorry to hear this. It does make the perpetrators think they can get away with such behaviour. For a while. But what goes around does eventually come around. Nature will have balance even if it takes a while.

    Keep plugging. Spreading awareness is never wasted. 🙂

    Like

  16. Please correct me if I am wrong…if IS or anyone other imperialist or even criminal force wants to take territory and treasure, persecute, rape, torture and murder as long as it is wrapped in a political purpose (whatever that means – I think this could apply to criminal gangs, after all they take from the rich and give to the poor which is very political) it’s not a crime. And furthermore if the murders in such a force arrive and provide bus service to remove people from their murderous intentions, they are humanitarians. Incredible. Where did the UN find such evil and twisted judges? Hopefully this is a strong enough slap in the face to Croatians:
    – We need to F’n wake-up and stop this left/right divide
    and realize the damage the leftist and SDP have done to croatia
    – Realize that we need to do more to build our diplomacy and strengthen our international position and alliances; Serbia has Russia, who do we have?
    – Realize that we need unity and strength from within; we can’t rely on anybody but ourselves; strong army, strong demographics and strong economy. Only strength is respected in international relations – might is right in international relations – you don’t need to look to far to have this proven.

    The Chetnik and Greater Serbia policy has been recognized and legitimized by this judgement. We have been criminalized and marginalized; much of which we did to ourselves.

    What sad, sad situation. How did we get here? How did such a greater victory in the face of such overwhelming odds turn into such a disastrous situation? In any other country a victory such as ours would be celebrated and cast in iron the very foundation of society. But not in croatia…we’ve criminalized it, and allowed other to hijack it. No wonder other nations trample on us, because we do it ourselves and invite them to do it to us. I am really pissed.

    Like

  17. One more thing, since hate speech and inciting violence is no longer a crime, I am writing a speech to help galvanize the croatian people to achieve our historic borders to up Belgrade as part of a new political movement to achieve the freedom of all Croatian peoples. I will be using Seselj’s speeches as a legal basis of my writing. With no fear I will take rusty spoons and carve out whatever body is necessary to achieve this legitimate political organization and purpose. Do you think judge (wow he’s a judge) Antonetti would help me write this speech and do you think he would agree to be by my side as I deliver my speeches?

    Like

    • Some good ideas here, Sunman, perhaps Judge Antonetti could receive a copy of the speech with a note: Thank you for giving me direction – who knows he might agree to stand at your side 🙂

      Like

  18. Imagine if this was the attitude in support of the Nazi’s? Stalin? Lenin? Bolsheviks? Come on, this gives free reign to slaughter without consequence – the absurdity is overwhelming!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. It’s sad that we live in a world where innocents are punished and criminals go free. God has a way of establishing justice in the end which human eyes may not see.

    Like

  20. Reblogged this on IdealisticRebel's Daily View of Favorites and commented:
    Neither Sesilj or Hitler are innocent. This verdict is a miscarriage of justice. Hugs, Barbara

    Like

  21. Don’t be surprised if they don’t now try to use this ruling in an attempt to overturn the ruling on Radavan Karadzic in some perverse lunatic contest… This is how they work to get around greater injustices. They should all be hung from the gallows!

    Like

  22. Velebit says:

    Yes, Ina, justice certainly does take a long time, and Croatians have experienced that reality not only for the injustices related to Homeland War of 20 years ago, but of those committed 70plus years ago in WWII and its aftermath.
    Together with the other commenters, I too view the acquittal of Seselj as nonsensical and a gross miscarriage of justice. The judgement should be vociferously opposed by our govt. and that to my mind means ALL elected members of parliament – they are our legal representatives and our frontline advocates. They should be as outraged as the rest of us and in the days to come we will see which of them actually lives up to their pre-election campaign rhetoric, promises and flagwaving!
    Za Dom Spremni!

    Like

    • Not enough outrage from the government or the resident that’s for sure, Velebit. Whether that’s because the shock of the acquittal was so great that it froze their tongues we shall see in coming weeks as the shock wears off through natural process – the people must see some real action and some real words of condemnation for Croatian national interests they all vowed to fight for during their their election campaigns.

      Like

  23. Here’s the great rub of the Seselj acquittal…if he dies before the Appeals Court can make a verdict, the original Trial Chamber verdict stands. In other word the historical record will show that Seselj, his ideas and his people were legitimate, their means and action were sanctioned in law, and ultimately they were humanitarians. Considering how long it takes for trial at the ICTY, and the Appeals Process, which hasn’t even been started, you can pretty much be sure that Seselj will die long before the Appeals process is completed. Sickening. Oh what rejoice for Pusic, Mesic, Jugosipovic, Milanovic and the entire SDP and left wing of Croatia – mission accomplished! For the HDZ and the right you f’d-up beyond comprehension.

    Like

    • Yes Sunman, in case of death prior to appeal’s end that seems to be the destiny of the judgment. I do find it unacceptable, given the situation, that such a destiny should stand – the concept of posthumous court hearing should be explored – heck even if it constitutes some kind of precedent – why not – the trial carried over a precedent as well, made Hitler, Pol Pot etc look rosy

      Like

  24. Jack P. says:

    Thank you Ina for being a tireless fighter for truth in discussing this. Also, thank you for being one of the few people who have the courage for calling the Ustasha movement what it truly was, a WWII political independence movement in Croatia. People in Croatia were fighting for a purely political independence from Greater Serbia. Then, true criminals like Seselj helped contribute to killing hundreds of thousands (possibly more than a million) again from the clutches of Greater Serbia and he gets off entirely free by pretending to also be fighting a political project. 😡 He is the murderer, not the Ustasha. Why is the world so anti-Croatian? : ( Thank you Ina.

    Like

    • Thank you Jack, the whole 20th century, almost, was marked with Greater Serbia power wielding and dealing and started in 1918 with the creation of Serb held Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes propped up by the British monarchy which was albeit distantly but related nevertheless to Serb King by blood of Queen Victoria … land grabbing for Greater Serbia was then extended for Kingdom of Yugoslavia, again under Serb monarchy and dictatorship, and then after WWII still under Belgrade or Serb power in most pivotal positions the communist Yugoslavia until Croatia broke free in 1990’s! WWII for Croatia was a battle between the desire for free Croatia and Yugoslav concoction under Belgrade’s power. All this in pretense of keeping the peace and unity in “South Slav” region AS LONG AS SERBS RULE, the same as with the Kingdoms for Serbs! I think that Croatia has many friends and supporters in the world it’s just that it does not seem to be able to shake of its past where Serbs killed to get its land with more determination and condemnation. Perhaps we will see that coming from the politicians soon (?) Cheers

      Like

      • Hi Ina, I totally agree with you when you say that Yugoslavia existed only “as long as serbs rule.” I mean Tito was 100% a Serb. It’s not like the Yugoslav regime was ruled by a Croat, Slovene, or a Bosniak after WW2. >: ( The Serbs just couldn’t stand for Yugoslavia to be ruled by anyone except a Serb. Thank you Ina.

        Like

      • You’re welcome, George

        Like

  25. Thank you for the excellent post!

    Like

  26. Hello Ina !
    A sad day for human rights, justice and common sense ! 😦 😦
    Thank you for visting ! 🙂

    Regards,
    Aliosa.

    Like

  27. Veronika says:

    Once again proof that the ICTY is a bloody joke and any dealings with them should have ceased years ago.

    Like

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