Serb Aggression Reconciliation Needs Serious Introspect


To escape from any dire situation requires that you accept two truths: the truth of how you got there and the truth of how you can get out. And the sad truth is that, in all these years since Serb (and Montenegrin) aggression against Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (early 1990’s) Serbia’s leadership and the squalling (about victimhood) that underpins its Greater Serbia movement has dragged into the European Union like a mischievous dog, already changing the parameters of would-be-reconciliation into new politics that are not likely to see reconciliation reaching the light of day any time soon.

Truth and reconciliation commissions are something that typically happens to countries that have been truly brutalised and can find no other way past their national traumas. When initiatives for such truth commissions comes from the one who brutalised in the first place, from the one who has denied and twisted the truth for decades one can say with confidence that only through Divine intervention can such truth commissions fully succeed with reconciliation.

“We have solid arguments for Croatia’s involvement, because NGOs have information on war victims and crimes that state institutions do not have. This is also important for victims and for restoring trust,” said 23 May 2018 Belgrade, Serbia, based Natasa Kondic, honorary president of the Belgrade Humanitarian Law Centre and one of the initiators for the establishment of RECOM, a regional fact-finding commission for the establishment of facts about war crimes and other violations of human rights committed in former Yugoslavia from January 1, 1991 until December 31, 2001. It’s been dubbed as “Truth Commission”! And Kondic is digging up arguments why Croatia should get involved with such a commission. How much of truth and whose truth this commission is likely to promote is anyone’s guess – given the disasters and the political prostitution of truth presented on several occasions through the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague.

I would suggest to Kondic to hand over to the proper authorities the information about war crimes she claims to have and stop disrespecting the victims of those crimes.

Horror! Where in the world does a person admit publicly of knowledge of information about war crimes committed that state institutions do not have? Well, in Serbia, it seems. Does this information refer to so far covered up and un-prosecuted war crimes? Is it a scenario for political play and wrangling in a region filled with still fresh blood from crimes committed when Serbia attacked Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina in the early 1990’s? Is it a yet another angle and edge that gives Serbia more time to keep denying its crime of aggression and bloodshed, all in justification of its Greater Serbia expansion? You can be sure its not about justice for victims, if it was then any such alleged information should have been in the hands of authorities as soon as it came to light.

Civil society organisations from Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro have called on the Croatian authorities during the week to support the establishment of RECOM. The NGO in Croatia that has joined hands with Serbia’s and Montenegro’s (both aggressors against Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina) is Documenta. An organisation whose pockets are lined by the likes of George Soros and governments still controlled by staunch former communists still in grief for losing Yugoslavia!

And wouldn’t you know it (!), former president of Croatia Ivo Josipović appointed Zlata Djurdjevic, law professor from the University of Zagreb, as his envoy to RECOM a while back, and she reportedly participated in the drafting of the RECOM Statute. This is the same president of Croatia whose father, a former communist Yugoslavia, stands accused of horrific communist crimes against innocent Croatian people after WWII but justice has eluded him as it has others of such dark calibre.

Why would Croatia want to join RECOM at this stage when Serbia still negates and denies its role of aggression against Croatia! It stands to good reason that it does not go down that path as that path has all the hallmarks of political agenda that does not include truth and reconciliation. To demonstrate how Serbia operates in the realm of internationally desired reconciliation after the 1990’s war of Serbian aggression one only needs to look in the actions of Serbia’s president Aleksandar Vucic upon his visit to Croatia a few months ago. Multitudes of Croatian people protested against this visit, holding with anger among other things that Serbia still hides information about hundreds of missing Croats from the war, but Croatia’s president Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic insisted on welcoming Vucic in Croatia, for good reconciliatory reason, she claimed. So, as such political things go, when Vucic handed to Croatia a number of files on missing persons the media went all out to build a hopeful picture that, finally, the missing can be found and their remains given a Christian burial…that Vucic has finally come clean in the name of Serbia!

Yeah, right!

However, the Croatian Commission for Imprisoned and Missing Persons – part of the War Veterans’ Ministry – after inspecting the files Vucic brought found that the information handed over had turned out to be about missing people whose remains or destinies had already been found! Vucic, Serbia, had no intention on handing over any information that would lead to finding the remains of victims of Serb aggression who are still missing. So much for good faith and will for reconciliation, which is always founded on truth.

And now we get a serving of Kondic who claims she and NGO’s have information on war crimes that authorities don’t! Kondic from Serbia is not the only one to keep information of war crimes hidden from authorities. According to Novi List news portal, Vesna Terselic from the Centre for dealing with the past, Documenta, from Zagreb, had announced that the data on victims, which this organisation has compiled for Croatia, would be available to the regional commission once it was established, “regardless of the decision of the Croatian institutions on whether to join RECOM “.

What are the Croatian authorities doing? It’s obvious that the possession of information on war crimes revealed by Kondic and Terselic suggests that such information has contents for war crimes that may not yet have been processed or prosecuted!(?)

Generally, the London Summit on Western Balkans will focus on three aims:

• increasing economic stability with a view to improving the business environment, encouraging entrepreneurship, addressing youth unemployment, and promoting regional inter-connectivity

• strengthening regional security co-operation to help tackle common threats, including corruption, serious and organised crime, trafficking of people, drugs and firearms, terrorism and violent extremism

• facilitating political co-operation – to help the region resolve bilateral disputes and overcome legacy issues stemming from the conflicts of the 1990s and strengthen democracy and gender equality.

As to the last aim above, issues to do with the war, one would think that it should draw firm lines between the aggressor (Serbia and Montenegro) and the victim states (Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina) of the 1990’s and put a stop to equating them. The idea of RECOM appears to feed into the madness of equating the victim with the aggressor. For this reason, among others, it is a welcome thing that official Croatian involvement with RECOM had stopped with the exit of Josipovic as the country’s President and the exit of Zoran Milanovic as Prime Minister.

At the conference or summit in London the Initiative for RECOM has announced their plan to compile a consolidated list of all victims of the 1990s wars by 2025, as well as causes and circumstances of their suffering, “because that year (the remaining) countries of the Western Balkans want to become EU members.” Expansion of EU is becoming more and more like a market place for trading with the truth and half-truths; and prolonging the agony for victims who should have had justice years back.

It has been said in the EU power-wielding circles that The Truth Commission should ensure that the minimal standards of the right to the truth are met, through the establishment of a common database of facts about war-related violations of human rights, building on the legacy of the ICTY.

The problem lies in the fact that ICTY’s legacy has more to do with twisting the notable amount of truth via a number of shady testimonies, political garble, false claims of political agendas and the like and equating the victim with the aggressor than it has to do with absolute truth. In such a political war and political clutter, reconciliation has no hope without pointing a firm finger at the aggressor – Serbia. It is then that truth will out: who were the parties (countries) forced to defend own life and self-preservation in the first instance in 1990’s former Yugoslavia? The answer to that will facilitate the absolute truth in all its details.

If EU wants to find a way for countries to relate to one another it needs to show and demand that all are aware of history and the roots of its bloody events. It is not enough to count the bodies in order to achieve reconciliation, which is what EU wants – the aggressor must be held to account and atone. Reconciliation begins with that, without it, it simply does not even start in the true sense of the word. Defending own life and right to self-preservation become points and real justice is thrown to the wolves. Ina Vukic


  1. Data from the NGOs discussed above is not secret or kept away from the governments – it’s available to anyone willing to do some research. Also, declassified files from the CIA are now available online, and you can find an abundance of data on crimes committed by all sides. Serbia was undoubtedly the main aggressor in this conflict, but to denounce the crimes and human rights violations that Croatia executed over the Serbs (and even the Muslim population before the signing of the Washington Agreement), is wrong, immoral, and can only lead to further conflict. Croatia, as the only member of the EU in the region, should make the first step and lead the way towards reconciliation, and joining RECOM could be the first step towards that goal.

    • Well, collegekidinsights, I believe the information about war crimes these people claim to have is not available otherwise why would they claim to have something presented as “special”…if by any chance it’s available information but has to do with lack of prosecution then RECOM is not the platform to deal with it, state prosecution is. No one here is denying any crimes by anyone. The point about reconciliation you are making does not stack up, Croatia has been making strides and moves but hey, when you have the other side denying its role in the aggression there is little hope for true reconciliation. By the way there were NO aggressors ONLY one aggressor, all others were forced to defend themselves. Do not forget aggression started after 94% of Croatian voters voted to secede from Yugoslavia.

  2. Ina, thank you for an in-depth, well written article.
    I always look forward to reading your posts.
    It’s such a shame that Croatia is run by a pack of idiots!
    They’re always looking after their own pockets, neglecting its people and are far too concerned with offending their Serbian aggressor!
    The Croatian people that live in Croatia, need to wake up!
    The only way Croatia can move forward is to eliminate all the present politicians and put in place new ones that have no close relatives from Serbia, or are orthodox, then and only then this might be the start of a country back on a mend.
    This is my personal opinion.

  3. The more I read upon this subject here Ina, the more I see the truth will never be allowed to be truly out in the world.. As there are wheels within wheels protecting the turning of events that unfold..
    While officials go about their business hiding their blemishes with more red tape..
    Keep on keeping on.. The Truth always finds its way.. .. <3

  4. Za dom, spremni !

  5. Reblogged this on Ace News Desk.

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