It favors to Russia that there is not only the Ukrainian battlefield, but also other hotspots in Europe and that is where Russia’s ally Serbia in the Balkans helps as much as possible, assesses Nemanja Milošević, master of political science and president of the political organization “Glas-Voice” in an interview for TheGeopost “.
“Glas-Voice” is, by the way, the only political option in Serbia that condemned the recent “incendiary chauvinist performance” and speech of Aleksandar Vučić, at the celebration of the illegal Day of Serbian Unity, Freedom and the National Flag, in Niš.
As they assessed, “the goal of this empty and false propaganda narrative and threat to the ‘defense of our people’ is the preparation of aggression against Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro”.
Milošević cites for TheGeopost as a fortunate circumstance that Serbia is surrounded by NATO countries and that “nothing more than incendiary rhetoric can and should not happen”.
The problem, he states, is not that Serbia has the will to demonstrate force, but that the West does not have the will to prevent that demonstration of force by Serbia.
“Until it becomes crystal clear to the West that Vučić is expecting Putin on the Danube and Trump in the White House, we will have this situation until then.”
According to Milošević, the media in Serbia are mostly in the service of Russophile and clerical propaganda.
“As long as this is the case, there is no hope for things to change, to first of all influence young people who have been completely indoctrinated by an incredible propaganda that completely distances them from reality and that takes us back to the 16th and 17th centuries.”
TheGeopost: You are the only opposition political organization in Serbia that condemned Aleksandar Vučić’s recent speech on marking the illegal Day of Serbian Unity, Freedom and the National Flag? What is the ultimate goal of such rhetoric and what is Russia’s role in all of this?
Milošević: First of all, thank you for this observation. We are really the only ones who clearly and unequivocally condemned this speech by Vučić. And before I answer your question, I will mention one fact that is quite symptomatic and interesting, and that is that no media, neither pro-government nor opposition, shared our announcement or transmitted it, which also speaks of the state in which our country is. I had to say it at the beginning because I think it is important and it really shows the image of a society that is completely euthanized, that is completely living in a parallel reality and that is what should worry us all.
I will now return to your question – the ultimate goal of such rhetoric is practically prosaic – it is to stay in power. For such anesthetized, Putinized and clericalized Serbian society, such rhetoric is practically a guarantee of its survival in power. However, this is not the only goal achieved by such rhetoric. In addition, it is a political message, and this real political message is addressed to the real, sincere ally of Vučić’s Serbia, that is, unfortunately, Russia, and it is support and help practically to Russia in such a way that some kind of destabilization is maintained in the Balkans, that there is, above all, the destabilization of the Western Balkans.
We have also seen that the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan has started again and Russia responds that there is not only the Ukrainian battlefield but also other hotspots in Europe and that is where Russia’s ally Serbia in the Balkans is helping as much as possible. What is our luck is that Serbia is surrounded by NATO countries and that nothing more than incendiary rhetoric can and should not happen.
TheGeopost: However, we saw an attack on KFOR forces in Kosovo in May. Montenegro, although a member of NATO, according to all relevant assessments, has a completely collapsed security wall, in BiH the security sector is in the hands of Dodik’s SNSD… Serbia is constantly arming itself, has the resources and the will to demonstrate force. Does the West have a way to deter and pressure Serbia so that anyone in Belgrade would take it seriously?
Milošević: Everything you stated is true and what is worrisome is that, to put it colloquially, the West, so I mean primarily the United States and the European Union, views all of this in a way that is not satisfactory in terms of their reaction to all of this. Again, I have to repeat and emphasize that I think it is important and that Vučić and the Vučić regime know this, but everyone in the West is aware of this, that NATO is the guarantor of peace and stability in the sense of Article 5 of the Washington Agreement, according to which when a NATO country is attacked, everyone is attacked.
And in that sense, you really can’t go further than these events that you just talked about and that you mentioned.
What is more worrying is the attitude of the West towards Vučić’s regime. Somehow, I get the impression that the problem is that practically the arsonist was given a fire hose and asked to put out the fire. And now he’s waving that hose in all directions except where there’s a fire, where the situation is the most difficult, and he’s also throwing scraps and flammable material there. So, I don’t see how the West expects someone who is part of the problem and someone who is the creator of the problem to solve that problem. Of course, the vampirization of chauvinism and nationalism, above all in Serbia, is somehow viewed in a way that practically, let’s say, additionally encourages such behavior and only shyly talks about the European future of Serbia, and the European future of Serbia is not even in sight.
The problem is not so much that Serbia has the will to demonstrate force, but that the West does not have the will to prevent that demonstration of force by Serbia. Until it becomes crystal clear to the West that Vučić expects Putin on the Danube and Trump in the White House, we will have this situation until then.
TheGeopost: You have assessed that Serbian society is highly radicalized and Russified. Also, the value system, grades are, in Serbia is at the lowest level… What are the mechanisms, in your opinion, that would turn such a society forward?
Milošević: The first mechanism for such a thing is the free media. We need media that will first of all tell the truth to the citizens, media that will inform the citizens about the real situation, that will not talk about mythology, about some things that do not belong either to the domain of politics or to the functioning of a normal society. The fact is that the media in Serbia at this moment are mostly in the service of Russophile and clerical propaganda. As long as this is the case, there is no hope that things will change, that, first of all, young people who are completely indoctrinated with an incredible propaganda that completely distances them from reality and that takes us back to the 16th and 17th centuries will be influenced. We are very far from where Europe is, where the West and the entire Western civilization is. Perhaps the bigger problem is that we have so-called opposition media. During Milošević’s time in 1990. At that time, we had some polarization between the media that support the government and those that support the opposition. We still have such polarization, but the problem is that what is being said on both the government and opposition media is practically the same policy, only that on the opposition media you have the appearance of Đorđe Vukadinović and Boško Obradović, who say the same thing as Vučić, but they just don’t like him and they think that he is not very good, but that they would do it better. This is something that is very, very dangerous and problematic. Therefore, civil, democratic, pro-Western, pro-European, even pro-NATO opposition is not heard or is heard very sporadically. And as I stated at the beginning, we are absolutely not in the media, as if we practically do not exist, as if there is some omerta that our name is not mentioned, so our organization must not be mentioned in any media, let alone be transmitted an announcement from us or for one of us to make a statement.
TheGeopost: Do the current months-long protests against violence in Belgrade have the strength and potential to bring about real changes?
Milošević: First of all, those protests started and were created as a reaction to two, truly, incredibly horrible and tragic events, and it was a way for the citizens to show their compassion and the pain we felt at that moment and reverence for the victims. Also, to show that they are concerned about the future of their children and the fate of this society. So those protests really had a legitimate goal and they really happened because of people’s need to change something in this society. And the demands that were set at the protest are something that “Glas” has supported from the beginning and is completely legitimate.
However, what I am afraid happened during these protests, and you can see that they are now less well attended and no longer have the intensity they had at the beginning, is that the opposition missed the opportunity to concretize and politically articulate these protests. I will just mention that we as an organization appeared at the protests carrying EU flags for one simple reason, because we tried to symbolically articulate exactly the direction in which these protests should go. And that is that we, as a society, are looking to become part of the EU, part of a society where there are clear norms of civilization, where there is no practical violence in everyday life. And that is what we are faced with here every day for the last ten years in a stripped-down form, and before that, from the assassination of Prime Minister Djindjic onwards, we were sinking into some darkness of radicalism, clericalism and Russophilia. That’s what we tried to say with those EU flags. However, there was no reaction from the opposition that organizes the protests and I think that now the only result of the protests will be that eventually the opposition list “Serbia against violence” will be created. But that list will be a conglomerate of some vague politics and general placement and will pass, I’m afraid, in the same way as the last story “One in five million”. /TheGeopost/