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» (E) 'Croatian Sensation' lands in Gary
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Sports | Unrated


'CroatianSensation' lands in Gary

Steelheads sign CBA's tallest player

Times Staff Report


Coach Duane Ticknor added size and NBA experience to his front line Tuesday by signing 7-foot-2, 250-pound center Bruno Sundov, the tallest player in Steelheads history.

The five-year NBA veteran most recently played with the New York Knicks after beginning the 2003-04 season with the Cleveland Cavaliers. He has also played with the Boston Celtics, the Pacers and the Dallas Mavericks.

"Bruno gives us added size and strength on the front line," Ticknor said. "In our playoff push, we will need to be strong on the boards and Bruno gives us that advantage."

Sundov takes the place of 6-foot-11 Leon Smith, who was released by the team.

A native of Croatia, Sundov was the youngest player in Mavericks' history when he made his NBA debut at age 19. He was Dallas' second-round pick (35th overall) in the 1998 draft.

Sundov helped Croatia's Junior National Team to a 3-0 record and first place in the 1998 International Junior Tournament and currently is the tallest player in the Continental Basketball Association this season.

Sundov also is the tallest player to ever wear a Steelheads' uniform. Lorenzo Coleman, at 7-1, played for the Steelies during the 2000-01 season.

Sundov will join his new team during today's practice at the Gary Genesis Center.

The third-place Steelheads (18-14) play three games in as many days this week. They are at Rockford on Thursday and Saturday nights with a Friday home game against the league-leading Dakota Wizards.

The Steelheads also placed forward Galen Young, their leading scorer, on the inactive reserve list so he could accept a lucrative offer to play in the Philippines.

» (E) Denmark backs Croatian membership in EU, NATO
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Politics | Unrated


Denmark backs Croatian membership in EU, NATO

05 February 2004

Danish Foreign Minister Per Stig Moeller expressed Thursday his support for Croatia's membership in the European Union and NATO in the coming years, saying the country was "progressing very fast".

"It is (now) only a question of when Croatia is joining the EU and NATO. Denmark is doing what we can to help Croatia into the family as we are helping the Western Balkans with a new membership program," Moeller told reporters following talks with his Croatian counterpart Miomir Zuzul.

"It was a good discussion which has given me reason to believe that it will be possible for Croatia to catch up with all of us," Moeller said.

Croatia, a former Yugoslav republic bordering Slovenia and Hungary, hopes to start accession negotiations with the EU later this year and to join the Union by 2007. It also hopes to join NATO in 2006.

Moeller said it was important for the international community to support the Croatian bids, as there were "disturbing signs around the Balkans", an indirect reference to the rise of ultra-nationalists in former Yugoslavia.

Zuzul said meanwhile that more time was needed to stabilize the entire western Balkans.

"We do see that Croatia can play a role in the stabilization of the region," he said.

» (E) Americki povjesnicar:U Bosni muslimani bili - agresori
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Politics | Unrated


Američki povjesničar tvrdi da su u srednjoj Bosni muslimani bili - agresori

Povijest naglavačke
Američki povjesničar tvrdi da su u srednjoj Bosni muslimani bili - agresori

"Ratna zbivanja u središnjoj Bosni ispričana su 'naglavačke', jer se hrvatska vojska - ustvari - branila, dok su muslimanske snage bile agresori" - tvrdi povjesničar i umirovljeni časnik američke vojske Charles R. Shrader u nedavno objavljenoj knizi o hrvatsko-bošnjačkom sukobu u Bosni i Hercegovini pod naslovom "The Muslim-Croat Civil War in Central Bosnia". "Prvi izvještaji, uključujući i teorije koje su se koristile u Sudu za ratne zločine u Den Haagu, kao i propaganda koju je širila muslimanska vlast, utjecali su na formiranje sadašnjih stajališta. Ona su se, međutim, temeljila na djelomičnim informacijama... Samo se pogledom unatrag može sagledati sve činjenice zajedno - i na taj sam način i ja shvatio da je cijela priča ispričana naglavačke", kaže Shrader. On smatra da će s vremenom biti preispitane neke od kazni izrečene pred Haškim tribunalom za ratne zločine. Glas Amerike ...

» (E) Rumsfeld in Zagreb on Sunday
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Politics | Unrated


Rumsfeld scheduled to travel to Zagreb, Croatia on Sunday

Rumsfeld says he does not regret 'old Europe' remark


MUNICH, Germany (AP) - Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Friday he does not regret having referred to France and Germany as "old Europe," a comment in 2003 that many Europeans took as an insult. "I'm too old to have regrets," Rumsfeld said in an interview with several European journalists shortly before the start of a NATO defense ministers meeting. "No, I don't regret it."
Although his remark may add fuel to an old fire, Rumsfeld said he had not meant to denigrate traditional U.S. allies Germany and France. He said his intention had been to distinguish between "old NATO" with its membership of 19 countries and the "new NATO" that is adding seven more.

In Friday's NATO talks, Rumsfeld was expected to endorse a plan to expand NATO's troop presence in Afghanistan over the next few months and to repeat his suggestion that the alliance consider eventually taking over the entire military operation in Afghanistan. The ministers were expected to approve setting up five new civil-military reconstruction teams in Afghanistan this spring.

In the interview with the European journalists, Rumsfeld also blasted the Arab satellite TV network al-Jazeera.

"We are being hurt by al-Jazeera in the Arab world," he said. "There is no question about it. The quality of the journalism is outrageous - inexcusably biased - and there is nothing you can do about it except try to counteract it." He said it was turning Arabs against the United States.

"You could say it causes the loss of life," he added. "It's causing Iraqi people to be killed" by inflaming anti-American passions and encouraging attacks against Iraqis who assist the Americans, he added.

On Thursday, Rumsfeld said U.S. relations with Europe, which were badly strained by the Bush administration's decision to invade Iraq, have returned to being "fairly normal."

Setting out Thursday on a three-nation European tour that started in Munich, Rumsfeld said that differences between allies are inevitable, and he dismissed suggestions that a major diplomatic effort will be required to mend fences.

On Saturday Rumsfeld planned to attend the yearly Munich Conference on Security Policy, which attracts officials, analysts and military leaders from around the globe.

Throughout NATO's 55-year history, he said, the trans-Atlantic relationship "has gone from little difficulties to things better, from little difficulties to things better - it's been a pattern over my entire adult lifetime."

"I would say the relationships right now are fairly normal."

Rumsfeld also said that although NATO may get more involved in Iraq at some point, "Its first task really is to do well (in) the Afghanistan task" of leading the International Security Assistance Force in Kabul, the Afghan capital, and managing civil aid teams in several provinces.

Rumsfeld said he expected Iraq to be a major topic of discussion during his two days in Munich. On Sunday he is scheduled to travel to Zagreb, Croatia, followed by meetings in London on Monday.

When speaking at the Munich conference a year ago, Rumsfeld was critical of Europeans who favored giving United Nations inspectors more time to determine whether Iraq possessed chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. Delay, Rumsfeld said, "could well make war more likely, not less, because delaying preparations (for war) sends a signal of uncertainty instead of a signal of resolve."

Almost a month later, U.S. forces invaded, toppling Saddam Hussein's regime. So far, no weapons of mass destruction have been found in Iraq. The head of the U.S. search team, David Kay, told Congress last week that it appears that the administration's prewar claims were erroneous.

» (E) Vukovar, Drvar Its Croatian population had gone
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Politics | Unrated


Half-Empty or Half-Full Towns?

Many refugees have returned to towns synonymous with ethnic cleansing. Many have not, and it doesn't look likely they will return soon. A success or a failure?

by Tim Judah

VUKOVAR, Croatia, KOZARAC and DRVAR, Bosnia and Herzegovina--Are you an optimist or a pessimist? You know how to tell. When you see a half-full glass of water do you say that it is “half full” or “half empty”? That was easy. Now for a hard question. When it comes to the former Yugoslavia, and you see a town with half its prewar population, do you say that it is “half full” or “half empty”?

Consider this: At the end of 1995, the formerly Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) town of Kozarac lay in ruins. It was almost completely deserted.

Vukovar, in eastern Croatia, was also still in ruins. Its Croatian population had gone, much of it replaced by Serbian refugees from elsewhere.

Drvar, in western Bosnia, was not a ruin, but its entire Serbian population had fled, only to be replaced by Croatian refugees.

Consider this: Today almost every single house in Kozarac, which lies deep in Bosnia’s Serbian entity, Republika Srpska, has been rebuilt. Half of its pre-war population has returned.

Vukovar has been almost entirely rebuilt, but only half its pre-war population lives there.

In Drvar, everything has changed too. The vast majority of the Croats has gone and the local Serbs are back. Now this is a solidly Serbian town again--but deep inside the Bosniak- and Croat-dominated Federation entity.

With the end of the wars and the absence of the “big story” some amazing changes on the ground have gone virtually unnoticed by the rest of the world.

And not just the rest of the world. Ask someone in Belgrade, Zagreb, or Sarajevo who lives in these three towns today and the likelihood is that they’ll look completely blank--if not a little disdainful too.

These three towns may be far-flung provincial backwaters, although actually not that far from the three capitals, but it is in these three towns, perhaps more than anywhere else, that you can see the new frontline. That is, between optimists and pessimists.

For the optimists there is plenty of good news. In Vukovar Serbs and Croats live and work, side by side. In Kozarac, Bosniaks are back in force and in Drvar Serbs are home too.

And ammunition for the pessimists? Only half the prewar populations are back. People live side by side, maybe, but not together like before. It seems unlikely that any more people will return.

But that is not necessarily because they don’t want to--it is because they can’t. There is no work for them.


Lying along the road between Prijedor and Banja Luka in northern Bosnia, Kozarac became a symbol of the wartime ethnic cleansing.

In the summer of 1992 Serbian forces simply drove out the entire population. Thousands of local Bosniak men also ended up in the most infamous and murderous of the wartime camps, Omarska and Keraterm.

Houses were then systematically dynamited. The architects of Serbian wartime policy deemed it necessary to completely cleanse a solidly ethnic Bosniak wedge deep in an area they wanted to claim.

In the aftermath of the Dayton Accords, which ended the war in 1995, Bosniaks were left in no doubt that they would not be welcome if they tried to return.

But that was then.

From 1999 onwards, through a combination of the determination of the people and international aid and pressure, the return began.

Now 10,000 Bosniaks, half the original number, are back and some 90 percent of houses have been rebuilt.

As everywhere in Bosnia, 90 percent of legal claims to have houses returned to their lawful owners have been solved. Bosniaks here are also back because they feel physically secure.

Nineteen ringleaders of the wartime ethnic cleansing in the area have been indicted and tried by the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague.

In eastern Bosnia by contrast, where fewer people have been indicted or arrested, the rate of return is far lower.

Overall, far more people have returned home, or at least have resolved their status, than many realize. According to the United Nations refugee agency UNHCR, almost a million refugees out of an original total of 2.2 million have come home. The agency estimates that today only some 400,000 still want to return somewhere in Bosnia.

Someone who did not know the history of Kozarac and who was just passing through could be forgiven for not realizing the extent of the horrors that happened here.

Jasmin Jakupovic, a Bosniak returnee, has invested heavily in building a large new restaurant in town. It is called Stara Basta (The Old Garden). Jakupovic has even hired a sculptor to create stone figures to decorate the garden and buildings.

He says he returned because he “can’t live without Bosnia.” But why, I asked him, has the rate of return been so high here as compared to so many other places? He replied: “We are different because of the will to return. And we suffered most after Srebrenica.”

Close by is the police station, from which hangs the Serbian flag, the police here being Republika Srpska police even if some of the policemen themselves are ethnic Bosniaks.

A little further down the road is a renovated school, which works according to the Bosniak curriculum. Bosnian Serb and Croat schools have different ones.

Across the road from the school locals point to where some of the family of Dusko Tadic still live. Tadic, a Serb, was the first man ever to be convicted by the ICTY.

Locals say that more people would have returned if there were more jobs, but much of the former heavy industry and the mines around here, as elsewhere in Bosnia, is defunct.

Still, even before the war people from Kozarac had a strong Gastarbeiter, or guest worker, tradition, for many worked in Switzerland. These links helped cushion the blow of being forced out in 1992 and provided money or refuge for the exiles.

During the holidays many more return to Kozarac, and some of those who work in Slovenia or Austria often drive home just for a weekend.

But not everyone is happy to be back. In a shop in Kozarac a 20-something woman working there, who asked that I not use her name, told me: “If it was up to me I would not have come back to live amongst people who committed crimes. My husband wanted to come back.”

She continued: “Salaries are low and prices high. We have no holiday, no paid social security, and no days off. I would not just leave here, but leave Bosnia.”

In that, she is not alone. Indeed, polls show that two-thirds of young Bosnians want to emigrate.


Before the war the municipality of Drvar had a population of 17,000. It was 97 percent Serbian. Of that number 9,000 lived in the town of Drvar, which had a high employment rate thanks to its thriving lumber industry.

Until the tail end of the war Drvar saw no combat. Its men spent much of their time fighting along the Bihac front.

Drvar, however, had some strategic importance. It lay along the road which connected the Serb-held Krajina region of Croatia with Republika Srpska and Serbia.

As the war drew to a close, Croatian and Bosnian Croat forces closed in on the town. The entire population bar some 80 elderly Serbs fled.

The Dayton Agreement placed Drvar well inside Canton 10 of the Federation. It also called for the return of all refugees. But the new Croatian masters of the region had other plans. With Serbs having fled Krajina, the HDZ felt it imperative to build an ethnic buffer zone along the border.

By 1998 it looked as though they had succeeded. Up to 6,000 Croats, mainly refugees from central Bosnia, had been brought in, plus 2,500 troops from the Croatian Defense Council (HVO), the Bosnian Croat Army, and their families.

When Serbs tried to return in 1997 and 1998, houses were torched, two elderly Serbs were murdered, and the mayor, Mile Marceta, elected with Serbian refugee votes, was attacked.

In Bosnia, the international community pledged tough action to reverse this situation. What is astonishing is that now not many people know what a phenomenal success this has been.

Today Mile Marceta, no longer mayor but an important local figure nonetheless, can easily be found around town.

According to him there are now only 800 Croats left here, while 8,000 Serbs have returned to the municipality. More would return, but as elsewhere, the problem is lack of jobs. Indeed, he says, because of this “people have started leaving again.”

While Canadian troops from SFOR, the NATO-led peacekeeping force, ensure security, Marceta complains that his people are still forgotten by the outside world. As an example, he says, outlying areas of Drvar have not yet been reconnected to the electricity grid.

Today, of 29 local policemen, 20 are Serbs and nine are Croats. Yet a flag emblazoned with the Croatian “checkerboard” still hangs outside the police station. It was deemed unconstitutional by the Federation’s Constitutional Court in 1998, but the local Serbian police, fearing the sack, don’t take it down.

This is because local power does not lie at the municipality level but at the canton level and, although three out of six municipalities in the canton are dominated by Serbs, there are well over twice the number of Croats in the other three.

Thus, local Serbs now go about their business on streets whose names recall Croatian nationalist heroes. It feels as though Drvar were some extremely odd little Croatian colonial outpost.

Mile Marceta complains that while “Europe stood behind Kozarac and everything was rebuilt better than before,” Drvar has been forgotten by the international community and foreign donors.

Local taxes go to Canton 10’s capital Livno, where the Croat-dominated government sends little back, Marceta says. “What we need here is the rule of law, and economic revival.”

The main employer is Finvest, a Croatian company which bought the biggest local sawmill after 1995. Many local Serbs grumble that this was a classic case of a firm being privatized by being given to friends of HDZ leaders. As Serbs began to return to Drvar, it was hard to find work at Finvest. Now, as Croats have moved out, the company has had to employ locals.

Many worry that a huge amount of illegal logging is despoiling the region and undermining chances for a real economic recovery in the future.

As memories of the war years recede, local Serbs have begun to venture back to the Croatian coast to take their holidays. Almost everyone, though, has family in both the Republika Srpska and Serbia and there is a lot of movement between the three places.

And it is not just that. As is the case elsewhere in Bosnia--and much to the rage of statisticians--many in Drvar are registered as living in several places at once. While locals had to register as returnees to get their property back, many have managed to stay registered as refugees in Republika Srpska and Serbia as well, to keep social benefits or to qualify in the future for a passport issued by Serbia and Montenegro.

Drvar, of course, was a famous Partisan stronghold during the Second World War and you can still see the cave where the wartime leader, Josip Broz Tito, lived during his time here. This year locals hope to celebrate the 60th anniversary of a famous battle and in this way gain publicity for their town.

Perhaps it is some of that Partisan spirit that has brought people back. There are those who complain, though, that a lot of that spirit has gone.

One young woman, a member of the small, activist Drvar Youth Council, told me: “It is all about jobs. Here, everyone wants to work, but there are no jobs. So, everyone, even with money, feels trapped. It is just so dead.”

“I would love to stay,” continued the woman, who asked not to be named, “and fight for a better tomorrow, but no one else is interested. There is a real lethargy here, especially amongst young people.”

Almost nine years after the end of the Bosnian and Croatian wars, Vukovar, Kozarac, and Drvar are symbols of something. For optimists it is renewal and the gradual defeat of the ethnic cleansers. For pessimists, it’s the opposite. Watch this space. This story has many years left to run.

Tim Judah is the author of The Serbs: History, Myth & the Destruction of Yugoslavia and Kosovo: War and Revenge.

» (E) Music around the bonfire
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Media Watch | Unrated


Dancing around the fire

Not sure about autheticityo of the story, but here it is, what people write and think.

Thursday, February 05, 2004
Copyright © Las Vegas Mercury

Music: Plucky charms
Flogging Molly upends Irish tradition
By Ched Whitney

For the uninitiated, the experience goes something like this: The ensemble comes on stage, toting the requisite traditional instruments--fiddle, tin whistle, mandolin, etc. The singer, a fortysomething Irish gentleman, cues the band members, and they launch into what sounds like a conventional Irish ditty.

Then someone bumps the turntable to 78 rpm.

Flogging Molly has been blending Irish folk rhythms with punk rock velocity since singer and acoustic guitarist Dave King got the band the together in the late '90s. King--who was the singer for the '80s hard rock band Fastway--met his bandmates at Molly Malone's, a venerable Los Angeles Irish pub where King performed on open-mic nights.

"The guys and the girls used to come down and see me, and that's where we all met," King said recently from his L.A. home, where the band has been rehearsing for a new album, a follow-up to 2002's Drunken Lullabies.

Having tasted some success and played at Madison Square Garden, King decided some of the associated trappings of that success didn't jibe with the lessons of his modest Irish upbringing. But the music did.

"For me growing up in Ireland, I was brought-up piss-pot poor. We had nothing," King says. "We had one room in the flat. But we had a piano in that room. Almost every Friday and Saturday, my mother and father would go out to the pub, and they'd come back with a load of people. And they'd all sit around the room and take turns singing a song. All we had was music.

"Looking back on it, it's almost like I'm trying to get back to that stage--the honesty of just music."

Flogging Molly released its first studio album, Swagger, in 2000 and quickly built a cult following with frequent gigs. A much-hailed run on the 2001 Warped Tour brought the band additional notice. While King is certainly pleased with the success, he is adamant that the band makes music first and foremost for themselves.

"People might say, `Why traditional music?' When you're young, you want to hear electric guitar and let your hair grow and fuckin' rock out or punk out, or whatever," he says. "To me, when I came over to America [about 10 years ago], it hit me: I was brought up on this music, and I ran away from it."

And though King says, "I don't fuckin' care if you don't like [Flogging Molly]," he says he feels fortunate to be doing something that resonates with people. He relates a story from an Italian friend who worked in refugee camps inCroatia. Lacking the resources to rebuild the bombed-out cities, people were forced to live in camps.

"Every night, Herzegovinians and Croatians and Yugoslavians were all sitting around the campfire and bickering. Every night they'd build a bonfire and the Croatians would want to here Croat music and they'd bicker over it." One night King's friend got out his boombox and put on Flogging Molly, and everyone stopped fighting and started dancing around the fire.

"Now if I can be sitting here in L.A. rehearsing or something," King says, "and somebody that we don't know, who are going through hell on Earth... and we're putting a smile on their face? I mean, for fuck's sake, that's more than any politician will ever fuckin' do. It's very, very humbling to think that you're doing something in your life that maybe means something to somebody else."

Copyright © Las Vegas Mercury, 2001 - 2004
Stephens Media Group

» (E) Croatians in Italian Concentration Camps
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | History | Unrated


Croatians in Italian Concentration Camps

The following story discusses a recent book published in Italy which
discusses Italian concentration camps whose victims primarily consisted
of Croats and Slovenes. It appeared in the February 6, 2004 edition of
Vjesnik. John Kraljic

Corriere della Sera: Fascists Camps in Croatia - a Stain of Italy

Rome, February 5. Camps which Italian occupation forces raised in
Croatia during the Second World War have been called a stain on Italy by
Corriere della Sera.
In its Thursday edition, the newspaper dedicated an entire page to the
book "The Duce's Camps" which describes fascist camps in Croatia and
Italy in which Croats and Slovenes were imprisoned. The book went on
sale on Thursday.
Author Carlo Spartaco Capogreco collected information concerning the
camps of Italian fascists in Italy and abroad for over 20 years and has
now published a book which shows, as Corriere della Sera writes, that
"the Italians were not really as good in history as they have attempted
to portray."
On the Dalmatian coast, Italian fascists had camps on Rab where Croats
and Slovenes from Rijeka, Slovenia and the northern Adriatic were
imprisoned. They also had a camp in Molat for central Dalmatia and in
Mamula and Prevlaka for the southern Adriatic. Another 5 camps for
Croats and Slovenes were built in Italy, in Ginar and Visco in the
Venezia-Giulia region, Monigo and Chiesanuova in Veneto, and Renicci in
Tuscany. "For Slovenes and Croats, who made up the bulk of the
internees in the camps, it was a true hell on earth [and] which meant
[for them] their complete liquidation," wrote the newspaper. In
researching through European and Italian archives, Capogreco created "a
picture of the horrors of fascist Italy. [His work is [characterized]
by the quality and depth of his research." He spent years looking for
the locations or remains of the camps.
Among other things, Correire della Sera writes that "thanks to his work,
one can reconstruct the history of the Duce's concentration camps,
concerning which he made a complete catalogue in the second half of the
book, and thus end the amnesia of the 'good Italian.'" (AR/Hina).

» (E) Internet Radio Lijepa Nasa
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/5/2004 | Community | Unrated

Internet Radio for the world community


» (E) Waterpolo - Croatia won 6-1 and the gold medal
By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/4/2004 | Sports | Unrated


Croatia Won Gold With 7 Victories

CROATIA vs. GERMANY 6-1 (2-1, 2-0, 1-0, 1-0)
German players had burst most of their energies in yesterday’s match against Russia they won assuring themselves the Olympic participation. Moreover last night they righteously celebrate watching an inevitable samba show staged on purpose in the premises of their hotel, the Rio Othon. For the Croatian it was just a formality to reassert their superior standing, with 2 goals in each of the first two quarters and 1 for each of he last two periods. Croatia, who had beat Germany 3-2 also in the Preliminary Round was the only team ending the tournament with all victories, a 7-match long winning streak.

CROATIA: Vican (GK), Buric, Vranjes 1, Simenc 2, Volarevic (GK, d.n.e.), Stritof (C), Smodlaka, Milakovic, Frankovic 1, Barac, Hinic 2, Fatovic, Kobescak. Coaches: Roje, Segvic (A).
GERMANY: Tchigir (GK), Zellmer (GK, d.n.e.), Schroedter, Weissinger (C), Dierolf, Politze, Wollthan 1, Schertwitis,Kreuzmann, Nossek, Kaiser, Mackeben, Pohlmann. Coaches: Stamm, Hohenstein (A).
REFEREES: Gabor Kiszely (HUN), Nikolaos Stavropoulus (GRE).


1. RADU (ROM) 13
3. BOOJ (NED) 10
3. COSIC (CAN) 10
4. CIPOV (SVK) 9

By Nenad N. Bach | Published 02/4/2004 | Politics | Unrated



Slobodna Dalmacija, Marijan PUNTARIC, 3. veljace 2004.
NOVA UHICENJA Jelavic, Prce, Rupcic i Azinovic gonit ce se i zbog "pokusaja uspostave samostalnog hrvatskog entiteta na podrucju Hercegovine 2001". Ta tvrdnja iz obrazlozenja Zahtjeva za odredjivanje pritvora prijeti i svim ostalim politicarima u BiH koji su sudjelovali u proglasavanju Hrvatske samouprave

Proslog je tjedna iz Kazneno-popravnog zavoda Kula, u Srpskoj Ilidzi, nedaleko od Sarajeva, gdje je vec deset dana pritvoren zajedno s Miroslavom Prcom, bivsim federalnim ministrom obrane, i Miroslavom Rupcicem, bivsim direktorom Hercegovina osiguranja, bivsi predsjednik Bosne i Hercegovine i bivsi predsjednik HDZ-a BiH Ante Jelavic otvoreno porucio da se protiv njega poveo montirani politicki proces. Jelavic je upozorio javnost da njegovo "zarobljavanje, spektakularno otimanje i pritvaranje od SFOR-a i medjunarodne zajednice ima iskljucivo politicku pozadinu. Smijesno je da se akcija SFOR-a organizira protiv gradjanina koji je, pred nenadleznim Sudom BiH, po clanku 358. Kaznenog zakona Federacije BiH, osumnjicen za zloporabu polozaja i ovlasti i nesavjesno poslovanje.

Sa svim dokumentima i pritiscima koji su od OHR-a ucinjeni na Ustavni sud BiH u slucaju Jelavic, a koji izravno svjedoce o politickom karakteru vec pripremljene optuznice i, navodno, odredjenog datuma sudjenja Jelavicu, Prci, Rupcicu i Azinovicu, upoznat je drzavni vrh Republike Hrvatske. Proteklih dana upucena je i sluzbena nota Sarajevu kojom je pokazana briga i interes RH za osiguranjem pune zakonitosti u kaznenom postupku koji se pred Sudom BiH vodi hrvatskim drzavljanima i trazi odgovor nadleznih BiH organa.
Politicki tuzitelj
Akcija SFOR-a i, navodni, gospodarski kriminal, za koji me tereti Posebno odjeljenje Tuziteljstva BiH za organizirani kriminal, nikako ne idu zajedno. Nisam ja odgovoran ni za zlocine u Srebrenici, a nisam valjda ni Karadzic, Hussein ili Bin Laden", ustvrdio je Jelavic. Je li Jelavic bio u pravu kada je ustvrdio: "Ovaj proces koji od pocetka vode stranci pretvorio se u politicki proces, u kojem ce nas se optuziti za ugrozavanje teritorijalne cjelovitosti BiH i suditi nam za politicko djelovanje na uspostavi hrvatske samouprave, a Hercegovacku banku proglasiti sredisnjom financijskom institucijom u funkciji nekakve separatisticke politike HDZ-a BiH i rusenja ustavnog uredjenja BiH. To je razlog mojega zarobljavanja." Na zalost, dokumenti koji su u posjedu redakcije "Slobodne Dalmacije" ukazuju da je Ante Jelavic imao pravo.

U opseznom i proteklih dana dobro cuvanom obrazlozenju Zahtjeva za odredjivanje pritvora, koji je zamjenik glavnog tuzitelja BiH, sef Posebnog odjeljenja za organizirani i privredni kriminal Amerikanac John H. McNair uputio sucu Amerikancu Bernardu Bolandu, jasno pise: "Hercegovacka banka je bila osnovni element nastojanja da se financira uspostava samostalnog hrvatskog entiteta u Hercegovini pocetkom 2001. godine. Dana 3. marta 2001. clanovi hrvatske nacionalisticke stranke, HDZ, na celu sa Jelavicem, proglasili su privremenu hrvatsku samoupravu, pokazavsi svoju namjeru da se odvoje, ukoliko druge dvije zajednice u BiH ne ispune odredjene uslove. HDZ je marta 2001. godine pozvala HVO da se povuce kao hrvatska komponenta Vojske FBiH.

Narednog dana oko 7000 hrvatskih oficira i vojnika napustili su svoje kasarne. Isplate takvim HVO jedinicama koje su ucestvovale u ovom demonstrativnom napustanju, od toga trenutka su vrsene sa racuna Hercegovacke banke, koje je posjedovalo nekoliko kantona i subsidijarnih pravnih lica Hercegovacke banke, Hercegovina osiguranje, Eronet i Croherc AG Mostar. Do 6. aprila 2001. banka je postala sredisnji mehanizam putem kojeg su osumnjiceni i njihovi pomagaci imali namjeru da financiraju odvajanje."

Iako se proteklih dana u javnosti kao razlozima uhicenja kalkuliralo prije svega osnivanjem i mogucim nezakonitostima u poslovanju Hercegovacke banke, te preusmjeravanjem novca iz proracuna RH preko HVO za druge potrebe, cini se neupitnim da ce se optuznica protiv Jelavica, Prce, Rupcica i Azinovica bazirati na kaznenom progonu radi "pokusaja uspostave samostalnog hrvatskog entiteta na podrucju Hercegovine iz 2001. godine", kako stoji u Zahtjevu za odredjivanje pritvora.

Tuzitelj McNair podsjeca da je jos u studenom 2001. godine Kantonalni sud u Sarajevu donio rjesenje kojim je utvrdjeno da "postoji osnovana sumnja da su cetiri osumnjicenika pocinili krivicno djelo pokusaja otcjepljenja dijela teritorija BiH protuustavnim sredstvima, organiziranjem i odrzavanje Hrvatskog narodnog sabora i Medjuzupanijskog vijeca 3. marta 2001. godine"...., te da su "Jelavic, Prce i drugi pocinili krivicno djelo podrivanja vojne i obrambene moci donosenjem odluka kojima se naredjuje raspustanje hrvatske komponente Vojske FBiH".

Tuzitelj McNair, medjutim, istice kako je o Jelavicevoj zalbi na nadleznost Kantonalnog suda u Sarajevu, odlucivao Vrhovni sud FBiH, a potom i Ustavni sud BiH. McNair konstatira da je Ustavni sud BiH udovoljio zahtjevu Jelaviceva odvjetnika da se daljnji postupak protiv Jelavica pred Kantonalnim sudom u Sarajevu prekine, te da se donesenom privremenom mjerom sve do tada poduzete radnje Kantonalnog suda stave izvan pravne snage do konacne odluke. Ali, tuzitelj McNair ne govori istinu kada u Zahtjevu za pritvaranje istice da "u toku naredna 23 mjeseca Ustavni sud nije donio konacnu odluku", te je zbog toga medjunarodni tuzitelj 20. listopada 2003. obavijestio Ustavni sud o namjeri da zatrazi naredbu o prijenosu postupka na Sud BiH.

Ustavni sud BiH je bio sprijecen donijeti konacnu odluku i to izravnom intervencijom viskog predstavnika u BiH Wolfganga Petritscha. Da je doista na djelu najava velikog politickog procesa protiv Jelavica, Prce i dugih zbog politickog djelovanja, i da ce se dvije optuznice, ona za gospodarski kriminal u vezi s Hercegovackom bankom, i ona za rusenje ustavnog poretka BiH, stopiti u jednu, i to pred Sudom BiH, potpuno je jasno iz tocke 72. Zahtjeva o pritvaranju. McNair navodi "da se pred Kantonalnim sudom u Sarajevu otvaraju pitanja od najveceg drzavnog znacaja i obuhvacanju krivicna djela protiv teritorijalnog integriteta, politicke nezavisnosti i drzavne bezbjednosti BiH. O optuzbama vezanim za pokret hrvatske samouprave najbolje se moze presuditi na nacin da se ti postupci izmjeste sa Kantonalnog suda u Sarajevu..."

Skandalozno pismo
Ono sto je tuzitelj McNair presutio zanimljiva je prica i dokumentacija koja je u posjedu "Slobodne Dalmacije", a iz koje je razvidno da se tijekom svibnja 2002. godine, izravnim politickim pritiscima iz Ureda visokog predstavnika OUN-a za BiH, utjecalo na Ustavni sud BiH da ne objavi vec donesenu odluku o ukidanju svih radnji koje su protiv Jelavica i drugih, u postupku zbog rusenja ustavnog poretka, donesene pred Kantonalnim sudom u Sarajevu. Ustavni sud nije samo propustio svoje rjesenje uciniti pravomocim vec je popustio pred pritiscima, promijenio odluku i cijeli postupak protiv Jelavica i drugih, vratio na pocetak. Tako je prvo rociste protiv Jelavica, Prce i ostalih u obnovljenom postupku koji, evidentno, ima politicki karakter, sazvano za 29. sijecanj 2004. godine.

Medjutim, sest dana prije, osumnjicenici su vec bili u pritvoru pod sumnjom da su pocinili gospodarski kriminal. Na taj je nacin, izravnim mijesanjem OHR-a u neovisnost i samostalnost sudstva, najbolje pokazano da je BiH protektorat medjunarodne zajednice. Tako su upravo duznosnici medjunarodne zajednice pruzili dokaze Jelavicevoj tvrdnji da se radi o montiranom politickom procesu. Naime, Ustavni sud BiH je 25. i 26. veljace 2002. godine donio rjesenje kojim je usvojio apelaciju Ante Jelavica, u kojoj on istice da mu je onemoguceno Ustavom zajamceno pravo na pravicno sudjenje.

Ustavni sud BiH dao je za pravo Jelavicu i donio privremenu mjeru kojom se privremeno obustavlja izvrsenje odluka Kantonalnog suda u Sarajevu, temeljem istrage otvorene u studenom 2001. godine. U toj istrazi Jelavica, Prcu i nekolicinu hrvatskih politicara u BiH se teretilo za kaznena djela protiv teritorijalne cjelovitosti BiH i slabljenja vojne i obrambene moci BiH. Pet mjeseci prije, uspostava hrvatske samouprave je bio povod visokom predstavniku OUN-a Wolfgangu Petritschu da smijeni Antu Jelavica s duznosti clana Predsjednistva BiH.

Na odluku Ustavnog suda BiH, Petritschev ured reagirao je pismom koje je Ian Campell, zamjenik visokog predstavnika i sef pravnog odjela, 22. ozujka 2002. uputio predsjednici Ustavnog suda BiH prof. dr. Snezani Savic. Campell upozorava Ustavni sud BiH da je rjesenjem koje ide u prilog Jelavicu, napravio "ozbiljan propust ako Sud nije smatrao da je Ured visokog predstavnika zaista trebao biti pozvan da makar dade svoje komentare kao amicus curie u ovom slucaju, a prije nego je Sud donio odluku".

Campell u ime OHR-a otvoreno trazi da Ustavni sud promijeni svoju odluku. "Na srecu, zbog cinjenice da odluka nije finalizirana, ocito je da Sud jos uvijek moze ispraviti ovaj vazan nedostatak tako sto ce redigirati ili promijeniti svoju odluku prema clanu 67. ili 68. Poslovnika Ustavnog suda". I kako ne bi bilo nikakve dvojbe sto OHR radi i sto OHR trazi, Campell u svojem skandaloznom pismu kojim se otvara mogucnost novih politickih procesa na ovim prostorima, kojim se ugrozavaju svi principi pravicnog sudjenja u BiH i rusi neovisnost i samostalnost BiH pravosudja, posebno istice:... "ovim pismom vam prenosim zahtjev visokog predstavnika da se ne poduzimaju nikakvi daljnji koraci u pogledu redigiranja ili odobrenja dok se ne mogne ponoviti postupak, kako bi se ponovo obavila rasprava"..., dodajuci kako W. Petritsch ima "stvarno najjaci interes za slucaj koji je u pitanju".

Sud je popustio
Vec 17. svibnja 2002. godine predsjednica Ustavnog suda BiH dr. Snezana Savic odgovara zamjeniku viskog predstavnika da "predmet ocjene pred Sudom nije bila odluka visokog predstavnika za BiH, tj. visoki predstavnik nije bio ucesnik u postupku, Vas komentar od strane Suda nije trazen". Dr. Savic tako je dala do znanja OHR-u da nije sudionik u sporu i da odluke Ustavnog suda ne mogu biti predmet njegove intervencije i pritisaka. Medjutim, politicki pritisak na Ustavni sud BiH bio je suvise jak i neumoljiv. Vec 23. svibnja 2002. godine dr. Savic pise novo pismo zamjeniku visokog predstavnika Ianu Campellu u kojem mu kaze da ce zahtjev visokog predstavnika "proslijediti Sudu na preispitivanje donesene odluke", u smislu clanova Poslovnika Ustavnog suda BiH. Naime, odluku da se Rjesenje Ustavnog suda ne objavi u "Sluzbenim novinama", kako bi postalo pravomocno, vec da se vec donesena odluka preispita, donijelo je vecinom glasova Malo vijece Ustavnog suda BiH, u sastavu dr. Snezana Savic, Azra Omeragic i Mirko Zovko, zamjenici predsjednice.

Tako je Ustavni sud BiH priznao da su sudovi u BiH samo instrument u rukama medjunarodnog protektorata. Na Jelavicevu zalbu na takvu odluku nitko nije odgovorio. Pravni ucinak stvari sastoji se u tome da se cijeli proces i istraga protiv Jelavica, Prce i drugih zbog istih kaznenih djela ugrozavanja teritorijalne cjelovitosti i slabljenja vojne i obrambene moci, opet vratila na pocetak, opet pred nenadleznim Kantonalnim sudom u Sarajevu. Prvo rociste u obnovljenom politickom procesu za rusenje ustavnog poretka BiH i uspostavu fantomskog treceg entiteta, sto Hrvatska samouprava rezolutno nije ni bila, Jelavicu, Prci, Batinicu, Tokicu, Milicu i drugima, trebalo je zapoceti 29. sijecnja 2004.

Prvo saslusanje pred Kantonalnim sudom omelo je uhicenje i pritvaranje Jelavica i Prce, temeljem odluka Suda BiH, koji o tome nije donio ni sluzbeni nalog. To ujedno znaci da se mogu ocekivati ne samo nova najavljena uhicenja pojedinih generala ili duznosnika u vezi s Hercegovackom bankom, vec da ce se uskoro pred Sudom BiH naci i svi oni politicari koji su s Jelavicem sudjelovali u proglasavanju Hrvatske samouprave, kao pokusaja upozorenja na neodrzivost neravnopravnog pravnog, politickog i drustvenog polozaja hrvatskog naroda u BiH.

Oni ce, prema najavama tuzitelja McNaira u Zahtjevu za pritvaranjem, odgovarati za rusenje ustavnog poretka i odcjepljenje hrvatskog entiteta uz uporabu vojne sile. Kako je to bilo moguce u uvjetima kada je HVO bio raspusten, i kada vise nije bilo novca za njegovo odrzavanje, jer iz hrvatskog drzavnog proracuna preko racuna u Hercegovackoj banci vise nisu stizali novci u BiH, ostaje vidjeti.

Sedmorica su znala za akciju uhicenja
Sa svim dokumentima i pritiscima koji su od OHR-a ucinjeni na Ustavni sud BiH u slucaju Jelavic, a koji izravno svjedoce o politickom karakteru vec pripremljene optuznice i, navodno, odredjenog datuma sudjenja Jelavicu, Prci, Rupcicu i Azinovicu, upoznat je drzavni vrh Republike Hrvatske.

Proteklih dana upucena je i sluzbena nota Sarajevu kojom je pokazana briga i interes RH za osiguranjem pune zakonitosti u kaznenom postupku koji se pred Sudom BiH vodi hrvatskim drzavljanima i trazi odgovor nadleznih BiH organa. Zanimljivo je da za SFOR-ovu akciju uhicenja Jelavica, Prce i ostalih za gospodarski kriminal nije znala ni sudbena, ni izvrsna vlast BiH. Cak ni ministri unutrasnjih poslova i sigurnosti.

Za akciju uhicenja znali su samo Paddy Ashdown, britanski i americki veleposlanici u Sarajevu, zapovjednik SFOR-a, tuzitelj McNair, sudac Boland i ravnatelj Federalnog MUP-a Zlatko Miletic.


The Croatian World Congress CWC, functions on all continents and in all countries of the world where there exist Croatian communities. The Croatian World Congress (CWC) is a non-profit, non-governmental and non-party international organization that enjoys advisory status as a NGO member of the United Nations.

The Croatian World Congress CWC, although a young institution, unites numerous Croatian associations world-wide as no other Croatian body has succeeded nor attempted to achieve to date (4.5 million Croats and people of Croatian heritage live outside of the Republic of Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina).

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