The sanctions announced by the EU against Serbia due to the recent terrorist attacks in Banjska in Kosovo will not make Serbia understand, says Vuk Drašković, Serbian writer, diplomat and leader of the Serbian Reconstruction Movement, in an interview with TheGeopost.
“If there are any, they will be very superficial and symbolic, the government and the regime will not even bother,” says Drašković.
Instead of any economic and political sanctions, Drašković suggests the following to Europe: “To ultimately demand that Serbia face the truth, and it cannot face the truth without opening the secret files of the UDBA, without lustrating the security services, I no longer know if they are Serbian or Russian, the removal from those services of all those connected with murderers, with mafias, with the Russian service above all and the adoption of a law similar to the law adopted by Germany when it opened the secret files of the Stasi and opened the door to the healing of the German people”.
He explains that people in Serbia are hostages of UDBA, and that “terrible hydra that is literally in every pore of life in Serbia”.
He notes that there are many people in Serbia who are in favor of the war and that they are people on social networks, drunk on the streets, in the salons of the Academy of Sciences, among writers, among newspaper commentators, analysts, among singers, fiddlers, mythomaniacs…
“And all those advocates of death and war are also advocates of a war in which someone else should die”.
Drašković warns that we are in a situation where perhaps the greater danger is the forgetting of the powers in the West about what was decided by resolution 1244 and about Ahtisaari’s plan, which is the basis of Kosovo’s independence.
“The Ohrid implementation agreement, the Franco-German plan and the Brussels agreement are nothing but walking in the corridors of Ahtisaari’s plan”.
Regarding the case of Milan Radoičić, Drašković sarcastically predicts that he may eventually be tried for a traffic violation.
“He will not be tried for the essential thing for which he must be tried – the invasion of the territory of another country with an armed formation, with an arsenal of weapons for several hundred people – for that,” says Drašković and adds that someone cannot be tried for a criminal offense that does not exist according to the Serbian Criminal Code.
He points out that among the Serbian political elite, there is a contest over who likes Putin more, or who Putin likes more. And when it comes to the attitude of the West towards Serbia, Drašković states that it is not only their attitude towards Serbia, but towards what is happening in Bosnia and Montenegro.
“In general, in the region of the Western Balkans, I think that the West is literally following the policy of Neville Chamberlain from 1936/1937, that policy of appeasement, i.e. stabilocracy, do everything, yield in the interest of peace.”
TheGeopost: The EU announces a package of measures against Serbia due to the terrorist attacks in Banjska. Will sanctions make Serbia reason?
Drašković: They won’t reason it, first of all, because it’s possible that there won’t be any sanctions. Another thing, if there are any, they will be very superficial and symbolic, the government and the regime will not even bother. I am predicting this based on the fact that due to the large donations, the large sums of money that it gives to foreign investors, Serbia is determined to all of them, and most of them are from the EU – for those Eldorado companies – and it is not very easy for them to give up the large profits that they have in Serbia.
Even those symbolic sanctions, if they are proposed, there will be a lot of tension around their introduction, I think they would be counterproductive because they would be interpreted as a European attack on the Serbian people; as anti-Serbian sanctions.
And even without any sanctions, the anti-European and anti-Western mood in Serbia is dramatic, and today there is greater support for the crime against Ukraine and the aggression against Ukraine among the Serbian people than among the Russian people. I think that these are all reasons that warn us that we cannot count on some radical moves by Europe or America, because both Europe and America are in one great fear of possibly making even more waves in this Balkan region gifted with misfortune. They got to know us well in the 1990s, and the very thought of the possibility of a mere renewal of conflicts similar to the conflicts of the 1990s scares the West. On the other hand, I think that the junta in the Kremlin is doing everything to make the eruption of evil from the 1990s happen right here in order to relieve their front in Ukraine as much as possible.
TheGeopost: You recently told Federal TV that you are more afraid of moral sanctions. What exactly did you mean?
Drašković: I said in that interview that I was worried and afraid of moral sanctions. It is about the moral sanctions imposed on the Serbian people and the victims of which are the Serbian people from 2000 until today, and especially after 2014/2015, and these sanctions are introduced by the regime and the regime’s propaganda by falsifying the truth about the 1990s, that crimes and criminals are celebrated, that what really happened in the 1990s is hidden from the people and that young people, who do not even remember those years , actually faced with accepting as facts what destroys the moral being of the Serbian people and closes all the doors to sobriety, to catharsis, to repentance for all those terrible crimes that were committed in the name of the Serbian people in the 1990s by a mafia, communist, UDBA camaraderie which brought down Yugoslavia and caused the greatest defeats and shame to the Serbian people since we existed.
That is why I think that Europe also does not understand the extent of this moral genocide against the Serbian people and that it does not do what might be effective instead of any economic and political sanctions.
TheGeopost: What do you suggest?
Drašković: The ultimate demand is for Serbia to face the truth. And one cannot face the truth without opening the secret files of the UDBA, without lustrating the security services, I no longer know whether they are Serbian or Russian, removing from those services all those who are connected with murderers, with mafias, with the Russian service above all and the adoption of a law similar to the law adopted by Germany when it opened the secret files of the Stasi and opened the door to the healing of the German people. I think that even financial support and personnel support from Europe for such a project of opening death files and crime files in Serbia would meet with the great approval of the vast majority of Serbian citizens. Because, actually, here we are all hostages, prisoners of UDBA, and that terrible hydra that is literally in every pore of life in Serbia. It has its own officers, its own people in the judiciary, in the government, in the parliament, in the Academy of Sciences, in the media, and is committing a moral crime against the Serbian people.
TheGeopost: How much appetite is there in such a Serbia for a major military incursion or attack? After the failure in Kosovo, will the Serbian regime aim harder towards Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro?
Drašković: The vast majority of Serbs in Serbia and outside Serbia are of course against the war and the renewal of anything similar to what we tragically experienced in the 1990s. However, there are many who are in favor of war on social networks, drunk on the streets, in the salons of the Academy of Sciences, among writers, among newspaper commentators, analysts, among singers, fiddlers, mythomaniacs… they are the ones who openly call for the return of the army to Kosovo, to the establishment of the Serbian world, which is another name for the Russian world of Vladimir Putin, and the Russian world of Vladimir Putin is a copy of the Germanic world of Adolf Hitler. And all those advocates of death and war are also advocates of a war in which someone else should die. We are now in a situation where we are perhaps in greater danger of being forgotten by those forces in the West, the democratic world, who are falling into some incomprehensible, incomprehensible to me, basements with no way out, forgetting themselves what was decided by resolution 1244 and forgetting about Ahtisaari’s plan which is the foundation of Kosovo’s independence.
Now people are getting the impression – the Brussels agreement, the French-German plan and the American plan, then the Ohrid agreement – that these are some new agreements, some new discussions about the status of Kosovo, and then from the West it is heard that the Association of Serbian Municipalities must be formed ‘ (ASM), ‘will put pressure on Prime Minister Kurti to form ASM’… They have nothing to pressurize and they have no other talks to conduct except one that Serbia must accept Ahtisaari’s plan and that Mr. Kurti must accept Ahtisaari’s plan. He (Kurti) was against Ahtisaari’s plan when that plan was accepted in Vienna in 2006, when the final status of Kosovo was decided, but Kosovo accepted that plan, incorporated it in its Constitution, in its laws and in Ahtisaari’s plan, which Kosovo accepted, is also the Association of Serbian Municipalities.
Talking about the obligation to accept what has already been accepted by the Ahtisaari document is something that is meaningless. It is possible to talk about Ahtisaari, plus when it comes to the Association of Serbian Municipalities, to specify a little more, but Mr. Kurti cannot say “I don’t want the Association of Serbian Municipalities”. Well, it was accepted, it is in Ahtisaari’s document. Serbia cannot reject Ahtisaari’s document because it was not accepted by Russia at the last minute and because Russia is neither a member of the Quintus nor the Security Council. Ahtisaari’s document is a document adopted according to resolution 1244 and we simply have before us a clear situation that the Ohrid Agreement on Implementation, the Franco-German Plan and the Brussels Agreement are nothing more than walking through the corridors of Ahtisaari’s plan. Let’s call the facts by their real name and look for what is easy to get because it has already been adopted.
TheGeopost: First de facto recognition then ASM, says Kurti. Serbia advocates the opposite.
Drašković: There is a lot that the Albanians accepted in Ahtisaari’s document, and that, after great pressures, I know, to which they were exposed in 2006, primarily from the United States of America. I think that the level of local self-government that is granted and guaranteed to non-Albanian communities in Kosovo, including the Serbian one, is among the highest standards of the EU, and the economic and cultural self-government of municipalities with a Serbian majority in Kosovo according to Ahtisaari’s document is several spears above such autonomy and rights of municipalities in Serbia. Today, we can listen to nonsense, and the people here believe it because they are victims of such propaganda – such as the danger that the Albanians will appropriate our churches and monasteries, that we must fight for the rights of the Serbian religious heritage in Kosovo. In Ahtisaari’s document, the sentence is verbatim: “all churches, monasteries and their property in Kosovo are the property of the Serbian Orthodox Church with its seat in Belgrade”.
In Ahtisaari’s document, there is a provision, and this was accepted by the Albanians, that around 40 churches and monasteries are established as protected zones in which Albanians not only cannot settle, but are also not allowed to enter without the approval of those monasteries or churches. The Banjska monastery is also a protected zone according to Ahtisaari’s document. The big question is why the Albanians are starting to violate that document more and more, but they accepted it and made a constitutional commitment that throughout the territory of Kosovo, the Serbian language is equal to Albanian, the inscription is bilingual, Cyrillic is equal to Albanian Latin, a special police unit must be formed which will especially monitor churches and monasteries, that the majority of members of that unit must be Serbs and that its commander must also be a Serb.
It is another matter now that a campaign has been conducted from here in Belgrade against the Serbs who joined the police unit, that they have betrayed, that they are national traitors because they join the Albanian police unit. So, what police unit will they join in Kosovo, except for such a unit. There are no Serbian police units nor can there be, neither the army, nor the police, nor the state government by Resolution 1244. The people here do not know that our brotherly Russia, when the procedure for the Ahtisaari document was on the agenda, voted for four principles and agreed with four principles on which Ahtisaari’s document rests: there is no return to the situation before 1999, in other words, there is no return of the state of Serbia to Kosovo; no unification of Kosovo with Albania; there is no division of Kosovo and the fourth principle, the highest European standards for the protection of the Serbian people, their individual, collective, religious rights in Kosovo. And this is the foundation of what the future must rest on and that agreement that must finally be signed on the overall normalization of relations between Serbia and Kosovo. By the way, Ahtisaari’s document clearly states that Serbia, for some emotional and historical reasons, is not obliged to formally recognize Kosovo’s independence, but is obliged to accept Kosovo’s membership in all international organizations, including the UN.
TheGeopost: Vučić often refers to this, ignoring the obligation to accept Kosovo’s membership in international organizations.
Drašković: This is what is written in what was accepted in Brussels, these are all the wordings from the Ahtisaari document, but we, that is, the Western representatives somewhat forgot about that Ahtisaari document and they have to insist on its application by Serbia and by the Kosovo government.
TheGeopost: Let’s go back to the last tragic events in Kosovo. One of the perpetrators of the attack in Banjska, Milan Radoičić, after admitting that he participated, was detained and released after only 12 hours. Will this court case go unanswered?
Drašković: I dare to predict that there will be no trial for him, or if there is, it will be a parody of the trial. Why? Because according to the current constitution of the Republic of Serbia, he was not on the territory of a foreign country. According to the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia, Kosovo is Serbia. According to the preamble of the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia, all these talks, agreements between Serbia and Kosovo are actually talks between Serbia and Serbia, it is nonsense and the Serbian people are forced by terrible propaganda to be hostages or believers of such nonsense.
Ever since Roman law, I have said and written it here so many times, the principle of “Impossibilium nulla obligatio est obligatio” applies – a norm that cannot be enforced, cannot be respected, does not oblige anyone. Therefore, you can write in the Constitution of Serbia that Kosovo is part of Serbia, but if it is part of Serbia, then Serbia must exercise authority over that Kosovo, and it does not exercise any authority over Kosovo. Therefore, that preamble is not binding on anyone. Serbia can exercise power by establishing a government. How? By war. And that war would be a terrible violation of resolution 1244 and a war with NATO. That would be a disaster for both Albanians and Serbs, but definitely a disaster for Serbia. On the other hand, why can’t Radoičić be tried? In the criminal code of the Republic of Serbia, which is also nonsense, there is no criminal offense of forming a paramilitary formation. He cannot be tried for forming a paramilitary formation, because someone cannot be tried for a criminal offense that does not exist under the Serbian criminal code. What will he be tried for? Let’s say for some traffic violation, or I don’t know why. But for the essential thing for which he must be tried – the invasion of the territory of another state with an armed formation, with an arsenal of weapons for several hundred people – he will not be tried for that.
TheGeopost: Kosovo demands an international investigation into the events in Banjska. Should such an investigation be launched and who, in your opinion, should lead it?
Drašković: I think that an international investigation must be carried out and that it must be fast. Here in Belgrade, they say that what the Albanians are investigating is untruth, Albanians say that what they are supposedly investigating in Belgrade is untruth. Therefore, let KFOR and Eulex carry out this investigation quickly and decisively.
TheGeopost: There are allegations of Russian influence in the events in Banjska. To what extent does this actually absolve Vučić of his responsibility?
Drašković: They cannot absolve anyone who is the head of state of Serbia. If I were the head of the state of Serbia and the Russian service was operating in Serbia and if, for example, the Wagnerians could mobilize people in Serbia and set up military training camps in Serbia, whether I knew about it or not, it would be my responsibility.
TheGeopost: Is Vučić afraid of Putin?
Drašković: I think it would be best to ask Vučić. I only know that in 2012, when the SNS sat down, everything was full of hope, everything was promising and the adoption of the Brussels Agreement was promising and many other things happened in the beginning. In the beginning, the Euro-Atlantic integration of Serbia was openly discussed. Vučić stated at the Faculty of Political Sciences that 90 percent of all security and development problems in Serbia would be solved if Serbia joined the NATO alliance. True. And then he said, unfortunately, the vast majority of people are against the NATO alliance. Also, true. But why is the vast majority of the Serbian people against the NATO alliance? Precisely because of these moral sanctions, the moral and mental destruction of the Serbian people by the propaganda orchestrated by the state itself. Besides, I often say it, a responsible statesman must do what is in the interest of the people and the state even if the vast majority of the people are against it at the time. I am actually quoting Kemal – Pasha Ataturk. No one made such magnificent, bold, risky moves as Kemal Pasha Ataturk, when he literally created a new, modern, European Turkey overnight from the backward Ottoman Turkey, when he was cursed, threatened to kill him, and after a few years, when they saw the results of all that, they called him the father of the nation, the father of the Turks. I often say here, and I also said that to Vučić when we met in those years and when I strongly supported this orientation towards Europe, towards NATO, that those who don’t want to take risks, risk the most, I quoted General De Gaulle. Unfortunately, since the Russian aggression on the Donbas, which began in 2014, a wave of Putin-philia is beginning to wash over Serbia.
I remember, Tomislav Nikolić was the president of Serbia, Putin came here only for a few hours and went to Ljubljana to spend the night there. In those few hours, the then president of Serbia, Tomislav Nikolić, came to kiss him nine times, and then the game of who loves Putin more, or who Putin loves more, began. Not only between people at the top of the Serbian state, but also among the opposition. The great race of who is more Putin’s. So that Putin-philia reached the proportions of a real tsunami so that today we would have a terrible situation for which we will be ashamed as a nation in front of history – that the percentage of those among the Serbs who support the crime against Ukraine is higher than among the Russians. I keep saying – we are missing a historic opportunity as a nation to support Russia standing up to this crime against Ukraine and against Russia. This is not only a crime against Ukraine, this is also a crime against the Russian people, their glorious history, culture. No one from here supported the unfortunate Alexei Navalny, nor does it support the Nobel Laureate Dimitri Muratov, a great journalist who, in the middle of Moscow, at this time, dared to print his newspaper in Ukrainian and in Russian. No one gives support to tens of thousands of Russians, young, educated, who are in the gulag because they are opponents of this crime against the two largest Slavic nations. Serbia’s support would mean a lot to them, but Serbia does not support them. Madmen marched in Serbian cities with the insane letter Z, in support of Armageddon over Ukraine.
TheGeopost: For Putin, therefore, it takes effort to be flattered, flattered, and subjugated. The opposite seems to be the case with Western officials. What do you think?
Drašković: It’s not just the attitude of the West towards Serbia, it’s also about the attitude towards what’s happening in Bosnia and towards what’s happening in Montenegro. In general, in the region of the Western Balkans, I think that the West is literally following the policy of Neville Chamberlain from 1936/1937, that policy of appeasement, i.e., stabilocracy, do everything, yield in the interest of peace. Yield to whom? A little while ago, you asked whether Serbia would go to Bosnia, whether it would go to Montenegro. How will they? Well, if the faucet of ideological, financial, church, propaganda support for pro-Putin’s parties in Montenegro and pro-Putin’s people in the Republika Srpska were to be turned off, they would fall in seven days.
TheGeopost: Who’s going to “turn it off”?
Drašković: Well, the one who gives support. Without Serbia’s support, financial, political, and ecclesiastical, things in Bosnia and Herzegovina would have started to settle very quickly. The process of breaking up Montenegro would be stopped very quickly. Because now the biggest enemy of Montenegro is the party and its leader who committed the two biggest crimes in the eyes of pro-Putin’s parties in Montenegro. Imagine, they dared to restore the independence of Montenegro in 2006, and imagine they introduced Montenegro into the NATO Alliance. That is unforgivable. And they dare not say – these are crimes that we will not forgive. They must not dare to say that, and they know that Montenegro is not in the NATO Alliance today, so that today Boka Kotorska would be Latakia, in fact, that the Wagner’s would be in Montenegro, that blood would flow through Montenegro, that they would come from there to Bosnia, and from here spread blood throughout Serbia. But these things are not talked about and the West turns a blind eye to these facts. The West is still in Neville Chamberlain’s positions, and we know what Neville Chamberlain’s policy and those concessions to Hitler produced – concessions, concessions, concessions, in the end there was no way around and the war began.
TheGeopost: Mr. Draskovic, one last question. If I am not mistaken in this room where we are talking, you once planned to form the European right wing of Serbia. Is that correct?
Drašković: Yes, I intended to form a Serbian right-wing, but a European, civil Serbian right-wing. And the SPO is a party of the traditional Serbian right-wing, that is, the right-wing from the 19th century, the right-wing from the beginning of the 20th century, the right-wing whose exponent was, for example, King Alexander, who never in his lifetime agreed to establish diplomatic relations with Bolshevik Russia, the right-wing whose ambassador in Russia after the revolution, at the first diplomatic reception organized by Lenin, for foreign diplomats, told Lenin to his face: “Mr. Ilyich, you are a terrorist. The order you are establishing is terrorist”. It was our deputy, our ambassador, representative of that Serbian European, civil right-wing, Miroslav Splajković. His grandson is in SPO.