If Croatian generals Gotovina, Cermak and Markac are convicted for what attorney Luka Misetic rightly calls, referring to the prosecution's allegations, a conspiracy theory - the global Croat nation will likely take a step backward into world history and suffer the same destiny as its ancestors. A destiny marked by stigma, political incorrectness and litany of diplomatic debacles and utter embarrassment. Not to mention that the on-going Greater-Serbian project of gaining autonomy or privileged status (that they already enjoy) might make serious inroads in a leader-less and spine-less Croatia. The billion dollar lawsuits will soon follow as well. Croatia will face insurmountable obstacles and quite possibly be forced to make concessions that were out of the question during war-time, but now dangerously close to being realized in peace-time.
The time of discussing and debating the charges against the Croat trio has passed. Everyone -especially the political court in the Hague, the prosecution and all of their apparatchiks (including the treasonous regime in Zagreb)- knows by now that the Croats are being accused of one thing, and one thing only: Defending the rights of Croats to live freely within their own state; defend the state and restore its territorial integrity - perfectly executed with operation Storm. In the eyes of many Western capitals, the Croatian state was simply not meant to be.
Every attribute of statehood that the Croat military successfully defended and liberated is the same attribute that the United Nations, with its many statutes and proclamations, legally recognized and legitimized in 1992. Absurdly, the International Crimes Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia is an ad hoc court established by that very same UN that granted recognition to Croatian statehood. The wholesale mockery of justice being perpetrated at the Hague can be summed up with a shocking indictment - an indictment that was never issued.
The Passion of Vukovar
In the fall of 1991, subdued and destroyed time and again, the heroic Croatian city of Vukovar suffered a defeat after a miraculous three month long defense. The concentration of military man-power, artillery, armor, infantry and tank divisions that besieged the city was the greatest single concentration of weaponry deployed on such a small territory in the history of warfare. Croat defenders managed an heroic defense against domestic Serbian terrorists and invading Serbian imperialists; imperialists under the direct command of the Yugoslav National Army and Serbia's then president, Slobodan Milosevic. Serbian aggression destroyed the city on the Danube hundreds of times over. It is estimated that every object in Vukovar -building or house- was hit by grenades, mortar-fire, heavy artillery, gun-fire - 100 times over. The destruction of the city is extremely well documented, with the materials easily accessible and widely available. In comparison, the siege of Sarajevo -also well documented and widely known - received many times more the attention of Vukovar, even though Vukovar suffered an exponentially worse fate. To this day, no one has been indicted for the war-crimes and wanton terror committed by the Serbians against the Croatian city of Vukovar. Vukovar - the greatest symbol of resilience in Croat history.
Croatian operation Storm, conducted in the summer of 1995, didn't encompass the liberation of Vukovar in Eastern Slavonia. Vukovar would be re-integrated with Croatia by a brokered peace deal. Operation Storm landed such a death-blow to the joint occupying Serbian forces in the bastard "Serbian Republic of Krajina," that the Serbian leadership under Milosevic wisely returned Vukovar to its rightful owners. Operation Storm was so lightning quick and so brilliant, collateral civilian damage was held to an absolute minimum. Considering the size of the operation; the sheer man-power numbering in the hundreds of thousands on the Croat side, operation Storm was completed in an astounding 84 hours - and proved to be one of the tidiest military operations in recent history. A successful display of Croat military prowess resulted in victory, all to the dismay of many, many forces and entities outright opposed to Croatian sovereignty and freedom. The Croats reclaimed Knin, once the capital of the medieval Croat kingdom. Zvonimir's city was liberated with ease - and the post-operation pictures of that very city, serving as the hub of Serbian occupation, aggression and imperialism 1991-95 - prove the cleanliness and precision of the then Croat war machine. Serbian terrorist strongholds were surgically bombed and shelled across the "Serbian Republic of Krajina," with the sole intent to keep civilian casualties to an acceptable minimum. The Croats succeeded and the pictures of a preserved Knin in August of 1995 prove the good-will and faith of Croat troops and their conscientious commanders.
The "excessive shelling" of Knin, for which there is absolutely no proof, is one of the main accusations on which the prosecution pegs its case. Because Knin was basically preserved and spared by the Croats -and because the Croats did not conduct a campaign of ethnic cleansing (the Serbs had orchestrated a prepared and well-planned retreat before advancing Croat military arrived, [see former US Ambassador Peter Galbraith's testimony])- para-intelligence communities stretching from Brussels to the Hague to Zagreb, in collusion with treasonous "journalists" and politicians in the Croat capitol(from both HDZ & SDP), campaigned for and demanded that official Zagreb "hand over artillery logs" in which shelling of "SRK" were recorded. The gaping hole in the prosecution's case required yet another propaganda front in the form of a supposed search for artillery logs that, according to them, "proved the excessive shelling of Knin." The treasonous elites, succumbing to the every whim of their EU masters, even pretended to be searching for the artillery logs. Thus, they launched an investigation into "missing" artillery logs that, in reality, never existed. That was the last in line of treasonous and, quite frankly, preposterous moves the Zagreb government made in an insane attempt to satisfy an international cabal intent on destroying Croatian sovereignty.
Because operation Storm was so clean; and because collateral civilian damage was, to put it harshly, not worth mentioning - the prosecution in Gotovina's case had to resort to counting Croat artillery shells in stead of dead Serbian bodies. The prevailing theme in Gotovina's case consists of the prosecution's insane conspiracy and lies, in lieu of evidence for wild and fantastical accusations - evidence that simply doesn't exist.
Chief prosecutor Tieger, during his final statements, laid it out loud and clear for all - commanders Gotovina, Markac and Cermak are accused of, along with late President Franjo Tudjman, late minister of Defense Gojko Susak (post-mortem!) et al of conspiring to purge/ethnically cleanse Croatia of its Serbian minority. Tieger made it especially clear with a schizophrenic statement how, supposedly, no one is questioning the legitimacy and legality of the Croatian state liberating its territory, but that the Croatian leadership of the time (the accused) used the liberation as a vehicle to ethnically cleanse the Serbian population in a "joint, collective criminal enterprise. Since there is no evidence of ethnic cleansing, and since there is no evidence of "excessive shelling" - and since civilian casualties were held to an all-time low - what then are the Croats really accused of? Put simply, they are accused of liberating their nation-state - all the while being held to the most bizarre international standards (a precedent in international law!) and criteria never before seen in the sanctioning of military conflict and engagement. The Croats were not supposed to be free, and that's the only reason Gotovina & co. are being tried. They symbolize Croatian sovereignty, leadership and initiative. They symbolize Croatian power.
If any of the Croat generals are convicted, no matter what the decision, and no matter what combination of sentences are handed out, always remember the destroyed city of Vukovar. Remember that Gotovina entered an unscathed Knin, while Croats, just four years prior, were ethnically cleansed from a Vukovar (as they were from Knin and other occupied territories) that was shelled back to the stone age. And always remember that the ICTY did not see it fit to indict, let alone convict, any Serbian for Vukovar's barbaric destruction. There is no better comparison, no tale of two cities, that completely extrapolates and highlights the injustices being committed against the entire Croatian nation by the international community and its pawns, the treasonous Zagreb elite. The elite that made damn sure Gotovina would, along with the entire Croatian war-time leadership (democratically elected!), stand accused for simply wanting freedom.
Official Zagreb, under the watch of Stjepan Mesic, Ivica Racan, Ivo Sanader, Ivo Josipovic, Jadranka Kosor, Vesna Pusic, et al are all complicit in the international conspiracy to, if not outright destroy the Croatian state, then at least to deform and degenerate Croatia to such a level that she will never again brandish the type of power and sovereignty as she did in the time period of 1991 - 2000. Commenting on the close of Gotovina's trial, Ivo Josipovic the minstrel (champion of Titoism and his bloody red-star and celebrator of Serbian crimes committed against Croats) stated he'd like to see the generals go free, but that crimes had been committed and someone must answer and be held accountable for them. Josipovic didn't comment on the scope of the crimes - just who should be held accountable for them - and what exactly would be a logical and proportional conviction for minimal collateral damage. It appears that the communist elite in Croatia sees fit that the entire upper-echelon of the Croatian military should hang. After all, Gotovina's removal - like the removal of all Croat patriots from positions of power - cleared the way for the neo-Yugoslav regime to further entrench itself and solidify unchecked clout. Not only did the court in the Hague serve its purpose to relativize the Croatian struggle for independence; not only did the court equate victims to that of their aggressors - but the saga in the Hague provided the ultimate vehicle for Croatia's communist caste to rid the nation of patriots, while at the same time re-integrating her in a new Yugoslavia - now fancifully dubbed as the "Yugo-sphere."
If Gotovina, Markac & Cermak have to pay the price for Croatian freedom, so to will the traitors in Zagreb have to, one day, face a different music and pay the price for surrendering it. And that day will come soon.