Three reasons why Vulin should not be at the head of the BIA
The possible appointment of Aleksandar Vulin as director of the Security Information Agency would send a bad signal not only to Western countries, but also in relation to the countries of the region, as well as on the internal political level, Danas’ interlocutors agreed when asked how they assess the possibility of the former defence minister, then of the Police, takes the position of the first man of the Serbian security services.
– It seems very bad, it would be a bad signal and a bad message to the Western countries to appoint as the head of the BIA a man who has very close ties with Moscow at a time when Russia is practically at war with the West. That would be very, very bad – says Predrag Petrović, director of the Belgrade Center for Security Policy.
And Ognjen Radonjić, a professor at the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade, tells Danas that “the possible appointment of the former police minister to the post of BIA director cannot be considered without taking into account the external and internal dynamics of political events.”
Let us remind you that after he was left without a ministerial chair, the public widely speculated that Aleksandar Vulin, known for his anti-European and absolute intolerance towards his neighbors, as well as hate speech towards citizens critical of the opposition and the government of Aleksandar Vučić, was seen as the new head of the BIA.
He is also the only European minister, apart from the Hungarian minister, to have gone to Moscow on a so-called official visit after Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.
– Not only did he meet in Moscow with his colleagues, but in his capacity as Minister of the Interior, last year he also met with the Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation, Nikolai Patrushev, and the Minister of Defense there, and agreed on the procurement of an anti-aircraft system. This year he met with the Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov and again with Patrushev, which indicates that he as a political figure has good relations with Moscow – points out Predrag Petrović.
This, he adds, is therefore the foreign policy moment that is perhaps the most important in the geopolitical context.
– The second is, of course, the regional aspect, from the point of view of regional security, because he is a great advocate of the so-called “serbian world”, because this is in fact a pandanus of the “russian world” and something that many people consider to be a correct version of “greater Serbia”. He also made very bad statements towards neighbouring countries, especially Croatia, – recalls our interlocutor.
And, finally, he notes, we have that internal political aspect, which is equally problematic, given that “he went here to hunt internal enemies”.
– Taking all three of these aspects into account would send a very bad message to the West, but also on an internal political level, – Predrag Petrović concludes.
According to Ognjen Radonjić, there are two logics of political developments – the external and the internal – which have been intertwined, but have so far not clashed head-on.
– Namely, the external logic of what is happening is that this government has the support of the West for Serbia to join the EU and NATO under the condition of an irrevocable break with Russia and the determination of clear border lines with Kosovo. In this way, America closes its security circle in Europe in relation to Russia. As part of that arrangement, their investments in Serbia and the free departure of people to Western countries, which otherwise have a problem with demographic decline, are always welcome. To that end, that is, to the end of maintaining internal social stability, which is necessary for the planned geostrategic changes in Serbia – explains our interlocutor.
The West was ready to support the dictatorship and all foreign investment, he adds, including Chinese investment, which has huge costs for our living environment, where foreign investors have access to cheap labour and subsidies in addition to non-existent environmental costs.
– With the outbreak of war in Ukraine, America has realised that the long-awaited confrontation with China has begun, demanding an acceleration of Serbia’s integration into the EU and a solution to the Kosovo issue in order to push China out of Europe in addition to Russia – Radonjic points out.
The interlocutor of Danas notes that the internal logic of the events is that people are in power whose only goal is to stay in power for the sake of enrichment.
– In this process, the means are not chosen – from tolerating dirty technologies, low-paid work, demographic collapse and corruption to cooperation with organised crime. To make all this possible, the government, with years of thorough work and propaganda, has taken over all branches of government and almost all media, which has enabled them to do whatever they want – hold irregular elections, persecute dissenters, bribe and create their own opposition, take freely abroad and pay billions of dollars in fines, cover up scams, and so on – he believes.
Look, he notes, at the collection of successfully covered-up affairs – from the murder of Oliver Ivanovic, the helicopter and ramp scandal in Doljevac, Savamala, the collapse of EPS and the arms trade.
– So far, many external events have came in handy for the authorities – for example, the annexation of Crimea, the coronavirus pandemic and the outbreak of war in Ukraine, but this last event only until the elections. After this year’s elections, the war in Ukraine is not working for the authorities, and that is when the external and internal logic of events collided. As long as they were intertwined, power was maintained at the internal level by passively adapting to external currents. As I mentioned, this strategy of political action is only possible in the case of taking over all institutions and almost all the media, which they successfully did previously. Therefore, there was no proactive foreign policy because it was not needed – concludes Ognjen Radonjić./Danas/