1 Monday, 26
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.40 a.m.
6 JUDGE MAY: Can I return this to the
7 registry. Thank you.
8 Mr. Sayers, and indeed Dr. Almond, I'm sorry
9 to have kept you waiting, but we had to consider the
10 circumstances of another case which we may have to deal
11 with. But we're now ready.
12 Let the witness take the declaration.
13 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
14 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
16 WITNESS: MARK ALMOND
17 JUDGE MAY: If you'd like to take a seat.
18 MR. SAYERS: One very brief preliminary
19 matter, Mr. President. The batting order for witnesses
20 this week is as stated in my letter of June 21st, the
21 most recent letter, with the exception of witness
22 number 4 on that list, who is not available. And with
23 the Court's permission, Mr. Browning will take the
24 direct examination of the first two witnesses on the
25 list, Mr. Almond and Dr. Mestrovic.
1 JUDGE MAY: Yes.
2 Examined by Mr. Browning:
3 Q. Mr. Almond, could I have you state your full
4 name for the record, please.
5 A. My name is Mark Padrais Almond.
6 Q. And Mr. Almond, do you have a copy of your
7 report that --
8 THE INTERPRETER: Could you please make a
9 pause between question and answer for the
11 A. I do have a copy of the report.
12 MR. BROWNING: May I ask you first of all --
13 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Browning, you're being asked
14 to make a pause between the question and answer, for
15 the benefit of the interpreters.
16 MR. BROWNING: I will do so, Mr. President.
17 JUDGE MAY: It needs to be remembered.
18 MR. BROWNING:
19 Q. Mr. Almond, if I could ask you to turn to
20 your curriculum vitae. And the Court has your
21 credentials before it, but there are a couple of brief
22 points that I would like you to clarify.
23 First of all with regard to the fourth line
24 on the first page of your curriculum vitae, if you
25 could explain to the Trial Chamber the time period that
1 you've been a lecturer in modern history at Oxford
3 A. Unfortunately, I've missed out a dash which
4 would indicate that from 1986 until the present day I'm
5 a lecturer in modern history at Oriel College in
6 Oxford. I apologise for that, if that misleads
8 Q. So you received your degree from Oxford
9 University in 1980 and have worked continuously, either
10 as a researcher or a lecturer, in the field of history?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. And you have numerous publications listed in
13 your curriculum vitae dealing with the former
14 Yugoslavia and eastern Europe. Do you have any
15 publications currently in progress?
16 A. For the Hoover Institution, I have a project
17 which is essentially dealing with matters to do with
18 the American media, and one part of it will be dealing
19 with the relationship between interpretation of
20 international relations and political decision making.
21 That's the part that will be relevant to the former
22 Yugoslavia, in part, in part, although only in part.
23 Q. And I notice on the second page of your
24 curriculum vitae you've been a frequent commentator on
25 various television programmes, as well as radio, as
1 well as a frequent commentator on affairs of the former
2 Yugoslavia and various newspapers and other
3 publications. Could you give us an idea of the
4 frequency by which you've been referred to in
5 newspapers and appeared on television with regard to
6 the former Yugoslavia?
7 A. Depending upon the state of events in the
8 former Yugoslavia, or other areas where my views are
9 requested, the degree of frequency varies, but quite
10 often if there is a particular event or series of
11 events taking place, it may be not only once a week,
12 but several times even in a day, for the BBC's various
13 news channels but also for other channels like CNN, SKY
14 News, and Channel 4 News. Also I get asked to write in
15 newspapers. So there may be periods generally --
16 certainly, even in a relatively quiet period, I would
17 be asked once or so a month, and quite frequently, as I
18 say, several times a week or even a day.
19 Q. The report that you have before you that has
20 been filed with the Trial Chamber, is that a full and
21 accurate summary of your opinions and conclusions in
22 this matter?
23 A. Yes. The report expresses my opinions and
24 conclusions. There may be certain, I regret to say,
25 certain typographical errors as a result of the time
1 factor, which prevented me from revising the report
2 which I had to submit from Washington D.C., but the
3 text represents my interpretation of the matter as
4 fully and accurately as I could present it.
5 Q. And as set out in the first sentence of that
6 report, you agree with many of the historical facts
7 contained in the report of Robert Donia but disagree
8 with some of the conclusions and opinions that he has
10 A. Yes. Much of what Dr. Donia says is true,
11 and certainly much of the history is unimpeachable. On
12 the particular conclusions about the events really of
13 1991, 1992, the breakup of Yugoslavia and how that is
14 to be interpreted, in this particular area I diverge
15 from him.
16 Q. I believe you also diverge from him with
17 regard to the historical significance of the borders of
18 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Could you explain the historical
19 significance of those borders and how your opinions and
20 conclusions differ from Robert Donia?
21 A. I think that under the impact of the terrible
22 events in Bosnia-Herzegovina after 1992, when the Serbs
23 caused such suffering to primarily the Muslims, a lot
24 of people, including the smaller community, adopted a
25 myth, a benign myth, but nonetheless a myth, of the
1 historical continuity of Bosnia-Herzegovina, which I
2 myself concede is a very tempting idea.
3 And the apparent continuity of particularly
4 the northern and western borders of Bosnia-Herzegovina
5 over recent centuries is introduced in evidence I think
6 in this Court but also in public discussion, in books
7 and newspaper articles, that there was a natural
8 political civic entity of Bosnia-Herzegovina which ran
9 back through time. It seems to me that this overlooks
10 that the real reason why those borders existed between
11 the Habsburg or Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Ottoman
12 Empire was precisely great power politics, but there
13 may have been peculiar geographical features that led
14 to different states and political entities at different
15 times choosing those boundaries largely as the ones to
16 be the basis of their division. But that the interests
17 and the wishes of the populations on either side of
18 those boundaries were not in the minds of the diplomats
19 and politicians, whether in Istanbul or in
20 Vienna/Budapest, who devised those boundaries.
21 Q. And what significance do those boundaries
22 have when events transpire in 1990, 1991?
23 A. The boundaries of the internal republics of
24 the collapse in Federal Socialist Republic of
25 Yugoslavia of course cut across the ethnic lines. I
1 use "ethnic" here not necessarily to mean that there
2 was -- in the scientific sense, but I think it's common
3 parlance to describe Croats, Serbs, and Bosnian Muslims
4 as different ethic groups. So the cultural, economic
5 and a variety of other traditional links which cut
6 across these boundaries were not necessarily regarded
7 as natural by significant groups of people; Croat and
8 Serb on either side.
9 Also, I might add, Bosnian Muslims regarded
10 the Sandzak of Novi Pazar which lay outside of the
11 territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina either as part of
12 Yugoslavia before 1991, 1992 or as an independent state
13 since. They regarded that territory as being
14 inhabited largely as people who they saw as being of
15 common identity with themselves. So in short, although
16 there may be very good and desirable reasons for the
17 creation of a Bosnian-Herzegovinian on the basis of the
18 republican boundaries in 1991, it is not inherently
19 pernicious to question those boundaries and indeed
20 representatives of all three groups at different
22 Q. Would you explain the historical significance
23 of the meeting in Karadjordjevo between President
24 Tudjman and President Milosevic and particularly the
25 events that one must consider subsequent to that
1 meeting in interpreting Karadjordjevo?
2 A. I think that the attention of this meeting is
3 out of proportion to its significance. If one judges
4 not what is rumoured and alleged to have been agreed of
5 subsequent events, then the allegations of some kind of
6 conspiracy plan to partition Bosnia-Herzegovina,
7 regardless of the wishes of its inhabitants between
8 Croatia and Serbia that such a plan was hatched and
9 prepared and this meeting is not borne out by
10 subsequent developments.
11 Q. What are the subsequent developments --
12 A. The subsequent developments are that
13 Croatia --
14 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Pardon, Mr.
15 Browning. What you have just mentioned about the
16 meeting, you said that has not been confirmed or been
17 borne out [no interpretation]. Could you speak to the
18 meeting itself without mentioning as the events that
19 were to take place later on, because you seem to say
20 that the further developments failed to confirm that
21 there was a plan to partition Bosnia-Herzegovina, but
22 as to the meeting itself, was that kind of plan
23 mentioned at all, whatever the further developments may
24 have been? So this is the first question of primary
25 interest before we speak about the further
2 MR. BROWNING:
3 Q. Mr. Almond, if you could, please, explain
4 what you as a historian and historians in general know
5 with regard to the meeting in Karadjordjevo?
6 A. With regard to that meeting, there are --
7 various sources have appeared primarily on the part of
8 Croats. To the best of my knowledge, neither
9 Mr. Milosevic nor any of the Serbian participants have
10 given an account of this meeting. The problem with the
11 sources which are all in the public domain that I know
12 of from the Croatian side is that they are all from
13 sometime after the events, after the particular
15 Even if we go back to the spring of 1991, in
16 addition to the meeting between President Tudjman and
17 Milosevic, there were also discussions about how the
18 future of Yugoslavia was to be developed on the part of
19 the heads of government and other political actors in
20 all the member states so that, for instance, President
21 Alija Izetbegovic of Bosnia held discussions with
22 Milosevic, Slovenes too.
23 It was not self-evident at that time that the
24 republican boundaries of the then waning Federal
25 Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia would be treated as
1 sacrosanct by the International Community as one actor
2 so that discussions about the complex ethnic map and
3 how that might or might not affect the future
4 development of the individual republics either as part
5 of a reconstituted or reformed Yugoslavia or as
6 independent states. All of this was clear in March
7 1991 and was very much up for grabs.
8 I think it is very important to remember, and
9 this is a problem that historians always have that the
10 events that took place that we know about, though
11 specific details may be disputed, were not known at the
12 time, though nobody knew at the time what was to be --
13 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] No, but the
14 question that I asked you and you didn't answer my
15 question, the simple -- it was simple. As an expert,
16 as a historian who must have studied this period on the
17 basis of available documents, what do you think as an
18 expert at that meeting between Mr. Tudjman and
19 Mr. Milosevic? What happened during the course of that
20 meeting? Do you have any idea? You say you do not
21 have any idea, that is all right but you, yourself,
22 have you formed an opinion as to what happened and what
23 was said at that meeting?
24 A. My opinion is that there was an inconclusive
25 discussion which included the question of if Yugoslavia
1 was to breakup, would Bosnia be -- what would be the
2 future status of Bosnia and one aspect of that
3 discussion, I suspect, on the basis is would it be
4 divided between the Republic of Croatia and the
5 Republic of Serbia.
6 On the substantive point of whether any
7 conclusion was reached about how to do that, I think
8 that no evidence that such an agreement let alone plan
9 or timetable was developed and that if subsequent
10 events suggest to me that insofar as President
11 Milosevic of Serbia was entering into such a discussion
12 with Croatia, it was partly in the context of his own
13 internal difficulties in March of 1991.
14 There had been large-scale demonstrations
15 against the rule of the -- Serbian Socialist Party
16 and --
17 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.
18 MR. BROWNING:
19 Q. Now, Mr. Almond, is it possible for you or
20 Robert Donia or any other historian to say with precise
21 absolute precision what was agreed to at Karadjordjevo?
22 A. It's not only possible to say with any
23 precision, I think, it is, in fact, impossible to say
24 that there was an agreement.
25 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Browning, of course
1 ultimately this is a matter which we are going to have
2 to determine or may be for the purposes of our
3 judgement as a matter of fact, as a finding of fact
4 whether there was an agreement or not. But I'm not
5 going to stop you asking the witness about his opinion
6 about it but we'll have to decide it on the evidence
7 such as it is, that is, put before us.
8 MR. BROWNING:
9 Q. As a historian and interpreting the events in
10 Karadjordjevo, you had referred to subsequent events
11 and how that must be considered as a historian in
12 evaluating whether there was a plan to partition
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Can you set out the subsequent
14 events that you are referring to?
15 A. The idea of collusion between Croatia and
16 Serbia seems to me to fall down on the fact that the
17 Croatian republic was a victim of an attack by the
18 Yugoslav People's Army, the JNA, and also local Serb
19 forces in the Krajina, Slavonia, and so on, I believe
20 organised to a great extent and directed by the
21 Belgrade government. And therefore, the idea that
22 there was a persistent cooperation between Zagreb and
23 Belgrade must fall down on the actual military
24 developments which included large-scale destruction of
25 property and ethnic cleansing of Croats.
1 I might make the point if I may, also, that
2 already in August of 1990, the certain Serb forces,
3 paramilitary forces in Krajina and parts of Slavonia
4 had been organised in -- to form an interaction against
5 the newly-elected government of Croatia, and I think
6 that many of the historians who might not necessarily
7 agree with me on every point would agree that that,
8 too, was largely steered from Belgrade.
9 Q. To what extent must one consider the
10 destruction of Vukovar in August 1991 and the attack on
12 A. The destruction of Vukovar in the later part
13 of 1991 and also the bombardment of Dalmatian cities
14 and territory seems to me also to compound the problem
15 of the idea of collusion.
16 Most observers in the summer and autumn of
17 1991, I believe, concluded that the strategy both of
18 Belgrade, of the still existing federal authorities and
19 of Mr. Milosevic's government, the government of
20 Serbia, which was increasingly the dominant force, was
21 to effectively destroy the viability of the Croatian
22 republic as a nascent independent state by occupying
23 large place or territory, by creating economic
24 turbulence because of refugees, and the destruction of
25 infrastructure and destroying its tourist trade which
1 has never fully recovered from the onslaught on coastal
2 towns, and it was a very important part of the economy.
3 Q. In evaluating significant events, what
4 significance should be given to Croatia's recognition
5 of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the boundaries of
7 A. Croatia's recognition of Bosnia-Herzegovina
8 is quite important because, first of all, Croatia was
9 the first state to do so at a time when, for instance,
10 the United States was still -- whose policy was still
11 very unclear. Furthermore it is worth remembering that
12 when Slovenia, then Croatia, declared their
13 independence from Yugoslavia at the end of June 1991,
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, which was under a government
15 elected in 1990 led by Alija Izetbegovic, did not,
16 certainly not in the eyes of Croats, act in a way that
17 was sympathetic or helpful to the Croats in their
18 conflict with the JNA and with the local Serb
19 paramilitaries. So that this gesture of recognition
20 was not wholly reciprocal; it was in fact an unilateral
21 act, if you like, by Zagreb to recognise
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina though many Croats felt that the
23 Bosnians had not assisted them when they were under
24 attack by similar forces to those now attacking
1 Q. As a historical fact, Croatia also sent
2 ambassadors to Bosnia-Herzegovina?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. In your report, you mentioned that Croats
5 saved Muslims at crucial times. Could you explain to
6 the Trial Chamber what you're referring to?
7 A. If we look at the -- I'm sure you're familiar
8 with the maps -- strategically the territory controlled
9 by the Bosnian government was dependent upon supplies
10 and assistance from the Croatian territory -- from the
11 territory of the Croatian republic. Without that flow
12 of humanitarian aid and other supplies through Croatia,
13 the Bosnia-Herzegovina government would have been
14 incapable of even the limited resistance that it was
15 able to put up to the attack by the Serbs.
16 More precisely, in the summer of 1995, when
17 the Bosnian Serb army launched its offensive against
18 the so-called UN protected safe areas, Zepce,
19 Srebrenica, moving on to Gorazde, and also Bihac, if
20 the Croatian army and also local Croatian forces within
21 Bosnia-Herzegovina had not intervened at a time when
22 the international community, NATO, did not act and only
23 acted subsequent to the actions of the army of the
24 Croatian republic, I believe that Bosnia-Herzegovina's
25 so-called Muslim government and its territories would
1 have been almost entirely overrun.
2 In the course of an interview with President
3 Izetbegovic in November of 1996, he was asked if he put
4 President Tudjman and President Milosevic on the same
5 level as aggressors against Bosnia-Herzegovina and he
6 explicitly said that though there had been very hard
7 times between the Bosnian government and the Croats
8 over the issues of obviously the basis of this trial,
9 the key point that he mentioned was that unlike
10 Milosevic, Tudjman had been in a position to strangle
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Muslim government, and had not
12 done so.
13 I think this also reflects upon the idea that
14 there was a persistent conspiracy from 1991 onwards to
15 do that that the president of Bosnia-Herzegovina did
16 not feel that whatever difficulties he had had with the
17 Croats, that that was what was being done.
18 Q. The discussion that you just referred to was
19 actually a discussion that you personally attended?
20 A. Yes, with certainly --
21 Q. Describe the circumstances?
22 A. Along with a number of scholars and people
23 who had been interested in the war from 1991 to 1995
24 and who had written about the conflict, I was invited
25 to a conference in Sarajevo and at the conclusion of
1 the conference we were invited to meet President
2 Izetbegovic and held approximately an hour-long
4 Q. With respect to Karadjordjevo, I believe in
5 your report you referred to it as a dog that did not
6 bark. Could you explain what you mean?
7 A. Dr. Donia expresses the opinion that
8 Karadjordjevo is symbolic of collusion between Croatia
9 and Serbia to partition Bosnia-Herzegovina. My
10 understanding of developments after that is that
11 whatever was discussed, it was not a plan for the
12 forcible partition of Bosnia-Herzegovina, because that
13 did not occur. And on the contrary; it was initially
14 Croatia that was threatened with either large-scale
15 territorial losses, or even destruction, within weeks
16 of this meeting. And I would put the meeting at
17 Karadjordjevo in the context of other meetings between
18 leaders and other political figures in Yugoslavia of
19 the different republics trying to come to some kind of
20 agreement about the future of Yugoslavia and sadly
21 failing. And out of that failure came the conflict,
22 which I believe was largely the result of the
23 aggression or the deliberate use of force by the Serbs
24 and the JNA, first of all in Slovenia, then in Croatia,
25 later in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
1 Q. And with respect to the conflict, I believe
2 that you refer in your report to the strain that
3 developed between Bosnian Croats and Bosnian Muslims as
4 a result of the position that was taken by Bosnian
5 Muslim leaders as the war began in Croatia. Can you
6 explain that concept, please.
7 A. When the fighting broke out in Slovenia, the
8 Slovenes said, "Why didn't the Croats come to our
9 aid?" When the fighting broke out in Croatia, despite
10 the precedent already in Slovenia, the government of
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina not only did not seek to frustrate
12 the military operations of the Yugoslav People's Army
13 and the Serb forces using its territory as a logistics
14 and other form of base for the attack upon Croatia, but
15 in certain regards it de facto cooperated with what
16 after all was still the army of the state of which it
17 was a constituent republic. So that, for instance, no
18 doubt with the intention of trying to forestall an
19 attack upon itself, or certainly to give no excuse for
20 such an attack, the arsenals, the weapons of the
21 Territorial Defence forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina were
22 instructed by the government to be handed over to the
24 A concurrent problem that helped to foster
25 distrust between Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats and
1 Croats in general in the Bosnian government was that
2 several officers of the JNA who participated in the
3 conflict against Croatia very soon afterwards became
4 officers in the nascent army of Bosnia-Herzegovina or
5 military advisors to President Izetbegovic.
6 Q. Can you also explain the significance of the
7 uncertainty regarding independence and what you
8 described as the ambiguous public stand of President
10 A. Not least because he and his colleagues had
11 witnessed the terrible violence, the onslaught on
12 Croatia, the ethnic cleansing in Vukovar and so on,
13 president Izetbegovic was anxious to avoid such
14 conflict, and he recognised that many of the
15 ingredients for such a conflict existed. However, his
16 efforts, which I believe were sincerely
17 well-intentioned to avoid such a conflict, nonetheless
18 naturally aroused fears amongst the Croatian community
19 in Bosnia-Herzegovina that their interests, and also
20 their sense of solidarity with fellow Croats in Croatia
21 itself, might be sacrificed in the course of
22 discussions, which, after all, were secret, behind
23 closed doors, or on telephone lines, between Sarajevo
24 and Belgrade. So that there was a climate of anxiety
25 fostered by this, not least because, as I say, at the
1 time when Croatia itself and many Croat civilians were
2 the subject of a very bitter onslaught by the JNA and
3 Serb forces, the Bosnian government was at best
4 passive, and at worst cooperated, from the point of
5 view of Croats, with their enemies.
6 Q. In your report you refer to Muslim forces
7 regarding Bosnian Croat areas as areas where they could
8 gain compensation for territory lost to Serbian
9 forces. Could you explain that concept.
10 A. Part of the underlying tragedy of this
11 conflict between Croats and Bosnian Muslims is
12 precisely the strategic goal of the Bosnian Serbs.
13 They had launched an onslaught which had caused intense
14 suffering and huge displacement of people, particularly
15 from eastern Bosnia but from other parts that they
16 controlled, and those people were funnelled into areas
17 which had been largely untouched by the conflict.
18 It is not the first time in history,
19 tragically, that people who are victims do not
20 necessarily feel obliged to behave entirely according
21 to what we might think of as the principles of natural
22 justice towards a third party. On the contrary; I'm
23 afraid it seems to me that not only having been driven
24 from their homes -- including, of course, the soldiers
25 of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina, who were themselves
1 refugees very frequently, as well as their families,
2 many of whom they were not certain of their fate --
3 that having been driven from their homes and having no
4 reason to believe they would return home, particularly
5 given the repeated statements by the International
6 Community that it was not going to reverse ethnic
7 cleansing by force, in that situation there arose the
8 -- in a certain sense it is natural, but highly
9 undesirable response of saying, "Well, here is
10 relatively undefended territory in which we are now
11 coming as refugees which we should occupy for
13 And I think again historians probably would
14 agree that it's a common phenomenon in conflict that
15 those people who have been either directly in conflict
16 with soldiers or affected by it as civilians very
17 frequently have great resentment towards
18 non-combatants, behind the lines, who are not directly
19 affected by the war. And in this case the civilian
20 population of Central Bosnia, for instance, had been
21 mercifully immune to conflict compared with what had
22 happened either in parts of Croatia itself or in other
23 parts of Bosnia-Herzegovina largely inhabited -- or
24 where the victims were largely Bosnian Muslims. And
25 this phenomenon, as I say, I think is unfortunately an
1 undesirable but natural phenomenon.
2 It was part, however, of the Serbian strategy
3 to not only drive the Muslims and, in those places
4 where they lived, Croats, out of territory which the
5 Bosnian Serbs wished to control, but also to foster
6 conflict between those two groups. I note, for
7 instance, that Dr. Donia quotes from Tanjug at one
8 point on -- Tanjug, the Yugoslav Belgrade-based news
9 agency, as a source for the antagonism between Croats
10 and Muslims. That seems to me, arguably, to be a
11 deliberate source of propaganda designed to exacerbate
12 and promote conflict between Muslims and Croats.
13 JUDGE MAY: See if I can follow this. The
14 point you're saying is that it was part of Serb
15 strategy to foster a conflict between the Bosnian
16 Muslims and Bosnian Croats?
17 A. Yes. Because, first of all, if we remember
18 the context, although the principal government involved
19 with the UNPROFOR operation, Britain and France, their
20 public spokesman said they did not wish to become
21 involved in the conflict, there was a great deal of
22 public pressure, including from parliamentarians, from
23 people writing in the press -- I include myself in
24 that -- saying that the conflict was primarily one in
25 which Serb forces, steered largely from Belgrade, were
1 engaged in aggressive and criminal acts against the
2 civilian population of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
3 I quote some of this in my report. Public
4 demands by the leader of the labour opposition, in
5 Britain, for instance, are the politicians, including
6 occasionally conservative politicians, for military
7 intervention. In that context, the Serbian government
8 and Serbian forces had an interest in creating or
9 promoting a conflict between Croats and Muslims so that
10 the argument which had been raised from the very
11 beginning by people who tended to be sympathetic to
12 Belgrade that really all the people in the Balkans, in
13 the former Yugoslavia, were given to atrocities, were
14 given to aggressive ambitions, that this would come
15 about. And partly as a result simply of their own
16 conquest. The Serbs created the context in which there
17 would be conflict for resources, for accommodation,
18 between the largely Muslim refugees coming into
19 territories which they had not lived in before which
20 were, in particular places, largely Croatian inhabited.
21 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Browning.
22 MR. BROWNING:
23 Q. Along those lines, I believe your report also
24 addresses the concept or the assertion that Croatian
25 nationalists were the lineal successors of the Ustasha
1 collaborators. Could you elaborate upon that concept.
2 JUDGE MAY: I don't think it's been suggested
3 that that was so. What the suggestion has been that
4 what was being followed was the banovina plan of 1939.
5 Now, that point has been made.
6 Perhaps you'd like to comment on that, Mr.
8 A. I think the agreement of 1939 was quite
9 widely regarded by Croats as being the basis of an
10 acceptable framework, that though because of the German
11 invasion of Yugoslavia, it collapsed very quickly. The
12 agreement between the constitutional parties of old
13 royal Yugoslavia to redraw the administrative
14 boundaries of the state in such a way that the vast
15 majority of Croats lived within one territorial space,
16 as I say, done under the constitutional arrangements of
17 the kingdom of Yugoslavia, was something that a lot of
18 Croats were nostalgic about, thought that would be a
19 good, acceptable idea, because it was a political
20 framework that had been based upon negotiation and --
21 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness slow
22 down, please.
23 A. It was an acceptable framework based upon
24 negotiation in the context of the constitutional
25 arrangements of old Yugoslavia, royal Yugoslavia.
1 MR. BROWNING:
2 Q. A portion of your report addresses
3 stereotyping of Croats. Could you briefly summarise
5 A. Yes. I think that in western Europe and also
6 in the United States, going back into the 19th Century,
7 Croats, as a nation, had been stereotyped as
8 reactionaries, because in the conflicts, particularly
9 surrounding the revolutions of 1848 to 1849, the
10 Hungarian liberals were -- tended to be sympathised
11 with by British/French/American liberal
12 constitutionalists as being their natural allies. They
13 seemed to be promoting a legislative framework based
14 upon elections and so on that seemed broadly in line
15 with what British, French liberals, constitutional
16 proponents accepted.
17 I think, myself, if we look at how the
18 Hungarian liberals were also very nationalistic and how
19 they treated the non-Hungarians within the territory of
20 the kingdom of Hungary, which included Croatia,
21 Vojvodina, and other parts of the former Yugoslavia at
22 this time, then we can see that this was a
23 misconception. But from that period in 1848, people
24 from Karl Marx through to British liberals
25 criticised --
1 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Almond, I'm getting a request
2 for you to slow down.
3 A. I'm sorry. From 1848 a spectrum of opinion
4 from liberals through to Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
5 attacked the Croats as reactionary because Croatian
6 forces led by Ban Jelacic participated in the overthrow
7 of the Hungarian revolution.
8 Then in 1941, of course, the establishment of
9 the so-called Independent State of Croatia, under the
10 auspices of the German Nazi conquest of former
11 Yugoslavia, revived and compounded that perception of
12 the Croatians, as a nation, as being peculiarly
14 There is a particularly scholarly work from
15 people like Edward Said and so on the notion of
16 so-called Orientalism or the stereotyping of whole
17 nations, particularly where those of us who come from
18 fortunate countries, like Britain, where the
19 constitutional and democratic and rule of law processes
20 have not been interrupted, take a derogatory and often
21 rather crude view of other nations. And I think that
22 the Croatian case is an example of this.
23 By contrast, for instance, the Serbs very
24 frequently are classified as a nation, or at least were
25 until perhaps 1999, as essentially natural allies of
1 the West. They had fought in the First World War, and
2 apparently in the Second World War, on the side of the
3 West, and so had a good reputation to people who had
4 not taken any close interest in the actual
6 Q. As a historian, to what extent are those
7 stereotypes significant in evaluating information
8 relating to the conflict?
9 A. They don't necessarily help one to evaluate
10 the conflict. What they help one to do is to evaluate
11 how public policy, diplomats, personnel involved in the
12 conflict from outside, may have come to the conflict
13 with perceptions which were distorted by these
14 stereotypes. And in my experience, these sorts of
15 stereotypes were widely repeated in the training of
16 British military personnel, for instance.
17 Q. Turning to the Vance-Owen Plan and the
18 Owen-Stoltenberg plan, can you elaborate upon what you
19 describe as the device of the facts of those plans
20 within communities?
21 A. The question of so-called cantonisation of
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina as a solution to the conflict was
23 vitiated, I believe, particularly by the language used
24 to describe those cantons, not least in public
25 discourse, by Lord Owen, for instance, by his
1 spokesman, whom I quote, John Mills, who tended to talk
2 about them as ethnically controlled -- there would be
3 Serbian, Croatian, or Muslim cantons -- and tended, for
4 instance, to also describe the government of
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina as simply Muslim, which was, of
6 course, what Belgrade and local Serb forces also said.
7 So that the rhetoric associated with the peace plans
8 actually, instead of calming the inter-ethnic tensions,
9 confirmed them and I think even compounded them,
10 because international statesmen seemed to confirm this
11 way of looking at the conflict as legitimate.
12 Q. As a historian, would the various strains
13 that you've described in your report and in your
14 testimony be sufficient to explain the conflict between
15 Bosnian Muslims and Bosnian Croats as opposed to a
16 grand plan to partition Bosnia-Herzegovina by the HDZ?
17 A. Yes. I think the contingent events, these
18 tragic and horrible events that had happened from the
19 spring of 1992 in eastern Bosnia, then around Sarajevo
20 and so on, had so destabilised and disrupted the
21 interior of Bosnia-Herzegovina, even in areas not
22 directly under the onslaught of the Bosnian Serbs, that
23 this could easily explain, without any reference to
24 what I regard as a chimerical conspiracy, how such
25 tensions arise. And we only have to think of analogous
1 conflicts, in Lebanon, for instance, where groups which
2 start out being together find themselves falling out
3 over resources, over accommodation, and so on, and the
4 brutalising effects of war.
5 Q. In your report, you address the theory or the
6 claim that there was a plan at Karadjordjevo as being a
7 statement that it was originated by opponents of
8 President Tudjman. Could you explain that concept,
10 A. Well, I think although the fact of the
11 meeting itself was known very early on, the main
12 source, to my knowledge, for the claim that there had
13 been a collusive agreement to dismember
14 Bosnia-Herzegovina, against the wishes of its
15 inhabitants and with brutal consequences, was made by
16 Mr. Stipe Mesic, now president of Croatia.
17 What is problematic about Mr. Mesic's claims
18 is that, first of all, he wasn't present at the
19 meeting. Secondly, he made these claims only after --
20 in public, at any rate -- only after he had quarrelled
21 with President Tudjman and fallen from the high
22 positions that he held in the government of Croatia and
23 also in Mr. Tudjman's party.
24 The main source from the Tudjman side, his
25 principal private secretary advisor Sarinic gives an
1 account of the meeting which is inconclusive, and that
2 was published much more recently. Its precisely the
3 subsequent developments, the conflict between Serbs and
4 Croats, that makes me -- that convinces me that you
5 have to believe in the most abstruse, sophisticated,
6 and frankly absurd conspiracy theory to believe that
7 there was a persistent pattern of collusion going back
8 to that period, or at any date, and that in practice,
9 in 1995, I think a lot of military historians and
10 military analysts I've spoken to at the Pentagon
11 recently would say that it was Croatian army's
12 intervention that decisively reversed the Bosnian Serb
13 conquests and brought about the conditions for the
14 Dayton settlement, and that the NATO bombardment was an
15 important factor, but without the Croatian army's role,
16 that the defeat of the Bosnian Serbs and the
17 establishment of the Dayton arrangements could not have
18 arisen. I think that's the common view amongst
19 military historians, military analysts.
20 MR. BROWNING: Thank you, Mr. Almond. I have
21 no further questions.
22 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Mikulicic, is there anything
23 that you want to ask the witness?
24 MR. MIKULICIC: [Interpretation] No,
25 Mr. President, we have no questions.
1 JUDGE MAY: Thank you.
2 Cross-examined by Mr. Nice:
3 Q. Quite a good technique to avoid going to fast
4 where we speak the same language, just put the
5 headphones around your neck, turn them to channel 5
6 which is French, and if you turn the volume up
7 sufficient to hear it as a background noise, it's then
8 possible to know when we can start the next question or
10 A. I apologise to the interpreters, in
12 Q. It took us months to work it out.
13 Let me see if I understand where we are. So
14 far as Dr. Donia's report is concerned, you may
15 disagree with it as to certain nuances, but you're not
16 saying that it's in any sense wholly and obviously
18 A. The thrust of his report with regard to the
19 charge of a collusion between Croatia and -- certainly
20 between the Croatian president and the Serbian
21 president seems to me to be wholly wrong. In fact,
22 Dr. Donia makes many points and quotes many facts and
23 so on which are true, but I differ quite fundamentally
24 on that conclusion.
25 Q. But that, as the Judges have indicated, is
1 ultimately a factual matter they've got to decide but
2 insofar as historians can have a view on this sort of
3 matter that is your principle disagreement, is it not?
4 A. There are also some points of interpretation
5 on the identity of Bosnia-Herzegovina as a state or
6 civic community. One of the problems is that, of
7 course, many facts which one agrees on can nonetheless
8 produce different conclusions. It's a common problem
9 with historians.
10 Q. But on the Bosnia-Herzegovina interpretation,
11 you're not suggesting that Dr. Donia's views are
12 outside the spectrum of accepted modern academic --
13 A. They're within the realm of debate, yes,
15 Q. As indeed is his conclusion on what you
16 describe as the -- you don't describe as "the plan" but
17 the plan and so on. That's, again, something well
18 within the spectrum of respectable opinion?
19 A. I think that particularly I make the point in
20 my report that many people who might, in other regards,
21 agree with Dr. Donia's scholars, I quote Noel Malcolm
22 and Ivo Banac and so on, of this particular point,
23 suggests that it is an exaggeration to the point of
24 distortion to suggest or -- conclusion so that they may
25 be critical of Tudjman in other regards. They may be
1 critical of the Croats in regard to the events of 1993,
2 but that even scholars who, in other regards, would
3 tend to agree with Dr. Donia do not agree with this
4 thrust of argument that there was an underlying and
5 continuous scheme of partition.
6 Q. Right. Thank you. Have you also read Dr.
7 Allcock's report?
8 A. I've looked through it, yes.
9 Q. Looked through it. Just so I can understand
10 it, is there any particular comment you want to make on
11 that before you move on or are you happy to let that be
12 dealt with by the next witness?
13 A. I think the next witness is probably more
14 competent to deal with that.
15 Q. As to the next witness, Mestrovic, we'll hear
16 from him, of course, but part of what he seems to rely
17 on is cultural irreconcilabilities between various
18 parties and he seems to rely on a forthcoming conflict
19 between Islam and the west.
20 Do you think that's all terribly important?
21 A. A lot of commentators, academics, politicians
22 apparently from the public domain quoted
23 [indiscernible] regard the threat of conflict with
24 Islam very seriously. I, myself, though regarding such
25 people as having serious interests on the subject
1 perhaps think that it is less serious and it may be
2 that some of the potential conflict is not entirely the
3 product of Islam but also the product of western
4 actions or perceptions of western actions and
5 attitudes. But it doesn't seem to me to be inherently
6 unreasonable to fear that.
7 Q. And where he forecasts -- not where he
8 forecasts, where he relies on cultural differences
9 between people in western Europe and people in Bosnia
10 from whom much lower and lesser standards of
11 performance could be expected, do you agree with him on
13 A. I have to say, by the way, that I have not
14 read his report. I know his academic work, so that it
15 would be improper of me to comment on specific aspects
16 of what the text says that I haven't read.
17 Q. Dealing now with a few questions about your
18 curriculum vitae. Did you type your report yourself?
19 A. Yes.
20 Q. So that when we look at the curriculum vitae,
21 this is your own formulation of your academic
22 background, the small correction you very helpfully
23 made in relation to the 1986 entry is something I was
24 going to ask you about, as His Honour Judge May will
25 know and others may not, at Oxford, of course, you are
1 a lecturer to the university and a fellow at a
2 college. You are presumably a fellow at Oriel College?
3 A. I am a lecturer at Oriel College, a member of
4 the history faculty, a member of the congregation.
5 They are layers of status or rank; professor, who would
6 also be a fellow of the college, a fellow, a lecturer.
7 Q. So you are not actually a fellow at Oriel nor
8 at any other college?
9 A. No.
10 Q. You are not a university lecturer?
11 A. No, I teach at the university. The
12 university, as you may know, organises the supervision
13 of graduate students, so when I supervise graduate
14 students for higher degrees, that is organised by the
15 University of Oxford. And then as a teacher of
16 undergraduates, I teach at Oriel College, but may also
17 teach and do from time to time undergraduates from
18 other colleges.
19 Q. So your lecturing is only with Oriel
21 A. No. The position is the position at Oriel
22 College, but I teach, in addition to the Oriel
23 students, students from other colleges as requested and
24 as feasible within my --
25 Q. Yes, I understand. That's general policy of
1 farming out work.
2 A. Yes. And the graduate students, for
3 instance, are organised by the university.
4 Q. Yes, but you have no lectureship within the
5 university itself?
6 A. No. But I think this may be a confusion of
7 language. I say the position of university lecturer is
8 a position in the academic hierarchy. I may have given
9 lectures, seminars and so on in the university in the
10 sense of addressing either students or gatherings of
11 academics and anybody who cares to attend.
12 Q. You don't set out your formal
13 qualifications. No doctorate is listed.
14 A. I'm mister.
15 Q. No doctorate is listed?
16 A. No, as I say, I'm mister.
17 Q. Have you ever started a doctoral thesis?
18 A. Yes, I started my research on German
19 intellectual history in the middle 19th century with
20 particular reference to Richard Wagner and by extension
21 to Chopin and if it is of assistance to the Court, how
22 do I come to be interested in, particularly east
23 European Balkan developments, part of archival and
24 other research required for that took place in East
25 Germany and I also visited Czechoslovakia. I became
1 interested, as is not uncommon with young researchers,
2 in those societies and, by connection, contacts I made
3 in other societies in what was then called the
4 socialist world.
5 If I may be perhaps self-flattering. A well
6 known historian in Oxford, Timothy Garton-Ashe, I
7 think, in a sense, we followed the same path. He
8 started to do research on German history, didn't
9 complete a doctorate, has written extensively. Is a
10 fellow of St. Anthony's College, Oxford, for instance,
11 and has also, per chance, a visiting professor at the
12 Hoover Institution.
13 It's not an entirely uncommon phenomenon, no
14 less common, perhaps, than in the past.
15 Q. You started this doctorate when?
16 A. I started doing my research in -- after
17 completion of my degree in 1980 and then was diverted
18 into working on east European matters and teaching and
19 writing about other matters.
20 Q. Now just to finish the questions I wanted to
21 ask you on your curriculum vitae, of course, in England
22 and particularly at Oxford, but in England in
23 particular, the term "professor" is a very particular
24 term noting, as it does, that leading of a department,
25 holding of a chair and --
1 A. I think actually -- certainly, it is a very
2 distinguished title. In practice in Oxford, the
3 professors, regis professor, for instance, or whatever
4 do not actually run the department. The chairman of
5 the department is elected by the members of the history
7 Q. And below the professor there might be the
8 next rank down who might be a reader?
9 A. Yes.
10 Q. But in America, a professor has a slightly
11 more general term referring to those who teach, but
12 when you cite yourself as a visiting professor at the
13 Hoover Institution, is that accurate or would that
14 perhaps be inaccurate?
15 A. Well, the Hoover Institution elected me to
16 what they call, I'm afraid I did not use the title a
17 "distinguished visiting professorship" which is a
18 position to enable me to pursue the research project
19 that had I proposed to them.
20 Q. Well, the proposed research is into the
21 editorial policies and content of four influential
22 American newspapers, isn't it, focussing on the impact
23 of those newspapers on foreign policy?
24 A. Amongst other issues, but particularly more
25 and more focussing on foreign policy.
1 Q. And when were you appointed?
2 A. I was appointed last August, no, formally
3 notified, if I remember correctly.
4 Q. Because isn't the reality that the title in
5 Hoover has always been, so far as you're concerned,
6 "distinguished visiting fellow" and the word professor
7 has never been used to cover your work at all? Perhaps
8 you'd like to look, please, at this piece of paper.
9 A. The commonplace -- certainly the members of
10 the Hoover Institution you just referred to as fellows,
11 if I have made a mistake, as I say, I have not wished
12 to appeal to this authority except that in
13 conversations on the telephone with people that have
14 routinely referred to me as professor, so when drafting
15 this curriculum vitae, if that is an error, I don't see
16 it as altering the signification, but I apologise.
17 Q. In America, there is a difference, again,
18 between professor, which is to teach, and fellow, which
19 may be to study, and you've got a grant to study, what,
20 for one year?
21 A. Yes.
22 Q. Thank you. Sticking with your curriculum
23 vitae, what is the date, please, of the first work
24 published by you concerning Yugoslavia?
25 A. It was in 1991.
1 Q. And that was?
2 A. I wrote a paper called the "Blundering in the
4 Q. It's a pamphlet effectively. And until then,
5 you had written nothing about Yugoslavia because your
6 interests had been elsewhere and in particular in
8 A. Romania is a neighbouring state of Yugoslavia
9 and particularly in the late 1980s and after 1989, of
10 course, Yugoslavia represented a fascinating comparison
11 and counterexample with the collapse of the communist
12 regimes like the neighbouring states of Romania,
13 Bulgaria, Hungary, Czechoslovakia and so on.
14 Q. And, of course, it was an opportunity for
15 academics to work with a developing and unusual
17 A. Because of what I had been studying before
18 this period, I felt, first of all, that I was struck by
19 the lack of interest in what seemed to me to be the
20 potential of growing evidence of a likely violent
21 conflict and by some of the assumptions about it that
22 were disseminated.
23 Q. You've been described by counsel as a
24 historian. I put this question to you: A historian, I
25 think you would accept, is somebody who works with raw
1 material, the primary sources, correct?
2 A. Those resources are available. I think that
3 historians use all the available resources to them
4 including, as it were, reflection.
5 Q. There are, of course, in relation to the
6 former Yugoslavia, considerable quantities of primary
7 source material available, aren't there?
8 A. In almost every area of considerable quantity
9 of resources with regard to the breakup of Yugoslavia
10 and the reaction to it of the International Community
11 especially the west European states and the United
12 States, there are relatively few primary sources in the
13 sense of publicly-available government documents.
14 Q. You don't speak the language, I think.
15 A. I read it badly.
16 Q. Since when?
17 A. I have -- having had some experience with --
18 I started to try to teach myself from 1991 and through
19 the period and I regret that my abilities as a linguist
20 are not greater than they are.
21 Q. No one, certainly an English speaker, will
22 complain about limitations on linguistic ability, but
23 the reality is that your publications on Yugoslavia, I
24 think, cite no primary source material written in
25 Croatian or B/C/S, do they?
1 A. I don't think that's entirely to the point.
2 Most of what I've been writing about uses the sources
3 in the languages of the international mediators or the
4 foreign policy -- but there are my, as I say, torturous
5 reading of my dictionary or whatever certain resources
6 to confirm things, but I wouldn't claim to be, for
7 instance, a cultural historian or literary historian of
8 Serbo-Croatian; that would be absurd.
9 Q. I think the simple answer, correct me if I am
10 wrong, is that neither in your earlier writings nor in
11 your report for this Tribunal have you been able to or
12 have you referred to any primary source material in
13 Serbo-Croatian, to use its old title?
14 A. There may be a few instances, but the task of
15 my report was to write about the perception of these
16 events with particular relationship to the breakup of
17 Yugoslavia and the international negotiations. I have,
18 I think, cited one or two cases where I have checked
19 sources to the best of my ability, limited ability.
20 Q. And, for example, just to take one example,
21 Tudjman, the historian, the books, are they translated
22 into English for you to read or have they been, as it
23 were, not available to you because they are in
25 A. I don't know how far all of President
1 Tudjman's voluminous works have been translated. Many
2 of them have been and many of them have been widely
3 discussed in a scholarly literature. As well as I
4 possess several of them.
5 Q. You aren't able to turn to them when you want
6 to check on the history of Tudjman's views on --
7 A. As I say, my reading knowledge is not as good
8 as it should be, and I have occasionally checked
9 because, of course, it's a matter of controversy and
10 quite often in reviews of these works, individual words
11 or whatever will be cited or discussed and debated.
12 Q. What I think will be helpful and most
13 efficient in our use of time is if I will go through
14 your report with you asking a comparatively number of
15 questions which I have to ask and which I have written
16 marginal notes and stopping at particular topics in due
17 course reviewing additional materials you've told us
18 about this morning. So if you would be so good enough
19 to take your report, please, and turn to the top right
20 hand corner which is page three and in the fourth
21 paragraph, you make an observation on statements by
22 President Tudjman, decrying the perceived danger of
23 Islamic fundamentalism, and you say that several SDA
24 leaders have been educated radical Arab states. The
25 next sentence: If we recall how many US commentators
1 -- incidently I should pause, I trust that the
2 interpreters have all got the report before them -- and
3 even the CIA has warned about the potential influence
4 of Islamic fundamentalists in Bosnia and other parts of
5 the Balkans -- a fear that I regard as greatly
6 exaggerated -- then Tudjman's attitude does not appear
7 abnormal or particularly sinister.
8 Do you think that it was then acceptable at
9 the time and not in itself dangerous to be expressing
10 what might be described as racist views about Muslims?
11 A. I'm not sure that these were racist views
12 about Muslims quo Bosnian Muslims or racist in that
13 they are about religious views. The -- particularly if
14 we go back to the -- late 1980, 1990s with the Iranian
15 revolution and the developments in Lebanon, it was a
16 commonplace fear expressed, as I say, by western policy
17 makers and statesmen as published from the CIA that
18 there would be the penetration of radical Islamic
19 ideology into the territories which had Muslim
20 populations and one has to distinguish between the fear
21 of a radical Muslim ideology radicalising people of
22 Muslim origin and being against them as a group per
24 Q. The question still remains, if you would like
25 to add to your answer, was it not dangerous given the
1 composition of Bosnia, in the early 1990s, to express
2 views adverse to an entire religious group represented
3 in that state?
4 A. To express that view might well be dangerous
5 if that was the view expressed. Certainly it might be
6 understood that way.
7 Q. And of course -- sorry, it would -- it's
8 danger would lie in the fact that it would whip up
9 emotions nascent or even nonexistent in the minds of,
10 in this case, Croats, wouldn't it?
11 A. It might have that effect, but I think one
12 has to remember that this was a fear expressed widely.
13 As I say, I think myself, it was exaggerated and that,
14 for instance, in so far as Iranian and other -- several
15 Mujahedin influence has developed in
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina, it would appear to be in reaction
17 to the war, the Bosnian Serb onslaught and also perhaps
18 to disappointment with the post-1995 settlement. It's
19 not unknown for people to become more religious, who
20 were quite secular, under the impact of terrible
21 pressure and events.
22 Q. Before I move from that point, one last
23 question. The Chamber here has heard evidence that
24 Mujahedin fighters, insofar as they are shown to have
25 been taking part, either all or most had to cross
1 Croatia to get to Bosnia, therefore had to be given
2 passes, I suppose, to do so. How does that fit, in
3 your judgement -- if that's what the Chamber finds, and
4 these are all factual matters, of course -- how does
5 that fit with Tudjman expressing genuine concerns about
6 global developments as opposed to his simply having a
7 rather more local ambition?
8 A. Well, I think it fits with a slightly
9 different point, that the Croatian government, whatever
10 its fears or whatever its resentment about previous
11 attitudes on the part of Bosnia in the run-up to the
12 war when itself was in war in 1991, permitted
13 assistance to the Bosnian government's side.
14 Q. It certainly doesn't fit, does it, with, as
15 it were, genuine concern about a forthcoming Islam
16 Christian divide?
17 A. Well, it seems to me that it fits with a
18 genuine fear, priority of fear, that the victory of the
19 Bosnian Serbs presented a greater threat than any other
20 threat, including an Islamic fundamentalist threat, to
21 Croatia. It seems as though that if -- the line would
22 be that Croatia was permitting assistance to go to
23 Bosnia even from people that in other circumstances it
24 might not be very happy about.
25 Q. Go to page 4 next. The central paragraph
1 reads as follows.
2 Yes, I'm grateful. The point -- just to
3 close that last discussion. The Mujahedin, on the
4 evidence, came post-Graz, so does that affect your
5 answer at all?
6 A. No. As I say, it seems -- I don't know
7 whether -- you may want to ask me about Graz at another
9 Q. I will do, yes. We'll come back to it,
11 Page 4, the central paragraph:
12 "Bosnian Croat preparations for self-defence
13 take on a different appearance when it is remembered
14 that President Izetbegovic's authorities had not
15 attempted to inhibit the operations of the JNA from
16 Bosnian territory against Croatia in 1991 and that they
17 had cooperated with the JNA by ordering the Territorial
18 Defence to hand in weapons to it."
19 Then you say, "Such confidence-building
20 measures failed to appease Belgrade." Isn't the
21 reality at the time that both the Croats and the
22 Muslims together were attempting to stall Milosevic's
23 mobilisation of reservists?
24 A. That is a different point. Many --
25 Q. First of all, isn't that correct, that all
1 the --
2 A. I believe it to be correct that ordinary
3 Muslims and Croats, and also people in positions of
4 authority, did not wish them to go and fight against
5 Croatia, but that several quite prominent officers in
6 the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina subsequently did so.
7 Q. Yes.
8 A. But there are variations -- as I suggested, I
9 think, earlier in my testimony, President Izetbegovic
10 was very anxious to avoid a conflict.
11 Q. You don't blame him for that, do you?
12 A. Not at all.
13 Q. And this paragraph doesn't lead to any
14 particularly significant conclusion, does it, as to
15 what happened between Croats and Muslims in due
16 course? At this stage they were pursuing a common line
17 of resisting Milosevic.
18 A. I think one has to distinguish between
19 resistance and a dislike of what Milosevic is doing.
20 The Bosnian -- first of all, the number of Bosnian
21 Croats, of course, went to Croatia to fight on the side
22 of their fellow Croats in the army. The situation in
23 the late summer, autumn and summer of 1991 was that it
24 was not inconceivable that, and certainly it would be
25 quite probable, that the policy of the Serbs was to
1 split the Muslims from the Croats, and that evidence of
2 what you call resistance as opposed to passive
3 non-cooperation and unenthusiastic agreement to certain
4 JNA demands on the part of the Bosnian government side,
5 that there was therefore a split in the response of the
6 Bosnian government side, for the sake of argument, the
7 Muslims, and of the Bosnian Croats, who were aware of
8 what was happening to their fellow Croats in Croatia
9 and might reasonably fear that they would be the next
10 target if such a war broke out in Bosnia-Herzegovina,
11 in which, for whatever reason, the Muslim community had
12 been neutralised or had stood aside or taken -- perhaps
13 even in some sense accepted continued Yugoslav
15 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, I'm going to
16 interrupt. It's just after 11.00. Is that a
17 convenient moment?
18 MR. NICE: Yes, Your Honour.
19 JUDGE MAY: We'll adjourn now. Mr. Almond, I
20 must warn you, as I do all witnesses: Don't speak to
21 anybody, please, about your evidence until it's over
22 and don't let anybody speak to you about it.
23 We'll adjourn for half an hour.
24 --- Recess taken at 11.04 a.m.
25 --- On resuming at 11.38 a.m.
1 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Almond, I've a request from
2 the court reporters; if you would speak slowly and
3 distinctly, they would be grateful.
4 THE WITNESS: I'm sorry. I mumble in any
5 language I know or don't know.
6 MR. NICE:
7 Q. Just one last point on the mobilisation
8 issue, which you had dealt with at page 4. Now, I'm
9 going to come back to the sources available to you in
10 particular in a minute, but who do you say it was who
11 decided against mobilisation? Who made that decision?
12 A. As I understand it -- you mean mobilisation
13 to oppose the JNA's activities with regard to the war
14 going on in Croatia?
15 Q. Yes.
16 A. As I understand it, the government in
18 Q. What do you mean by "the government in
20 A. President Izetbegovic and his colleagues.
21 Q. You see, it's quite important to be precise
22 on these matters, isn't it? Do you accept that?
23 A. Of course.
24 Q. Now, do you mean President Izetbegovic or do
25 you mean the presidency? Who was it who made that
1 non-mobilisation decision, or don't you know?
2 A. It would have been made under the authority
3 of the presidency, but I haven't got the exact document
4 in front of me.
5 Q. But of course you will have read, no doubt,
6 Susan Woodward's book -- that's in English -- Balkan
7 Tragedy, and she sets out quite clearly at page 260
8 that it was the presidency that made that order. So
9 the presidency, of course, included Croat members,
10 didn't it?
11 A. Yes.
12 Q. Do you think that your paragraph here, where
13 you say, "where it is remembered that President
14 Izetbegovic's authorities," and so on, do you think
15 that's being entirely fair?
16 A. Well, as I said first of all earlier on, I
17 didn't mean necessarily that one should impugn the
18 intentions or the desire to avoid conflict on the part
19 of either President Izetbegovic or members of his party
20 or people who cooperated with him in Sarajevo. But if
21 we look at the context, I think there is a lot of
22 evidence that people in the predominantly Croatian
23 areas, the activists who were sympathetic to the cause
24 of Croatia which was at war, felt that perhaps the
25 government in Sarajevo, including even Croat members of
1 it, were not aware of -- or not fully aware of the
2 threat that they believed the JNA posed. I think, for
3 instance --
4 Q. I'm sorry. I'm going to cut you off, because
5 we don't have, unfortunately, limitless time. My
6 question to you simply is this: In your expert report,
7 do you think focusing on President Izetbegovic, when
8 the available material to you showed that this was a
9 decision of the presidency that included Croats, do you
10 think that was entirely fair in your report, or should
11 we really think that this ought to be slightly revised?
12 A. It may be slightly revised to take into
13 account that people who were of Croatian origin in the
14 presidency who were participants in these decisions,
15 but I'm not sure that taking all the evidence available
16 to me from the sources that I have, ranging from the
17 sort of books that you quote through to the summaries,
18 the BBC summaries of world broadcasts and FBIS and so
19 on, that one wouldn't find that if we look at the
20 perception, certainly, the perception of many Bosnian
21 Croats was that the initiative for this was primarily
22 one for the sake of the Muslims.
23 Q. I'm not going to debate that further with
25 Before I come to the next major topic and the
1 only one that's going to take any significant -- a
2 great period of time, just back again to your
3 function. As you've told us, I think, you were dealing
4 with available English predominant sources in order to
5 give perceptions or give an account of the perceptions
6 outside Bosnia of what was happening within. Now, if
7 that's right, how does that enable you to express
8 opinions on what was happening at Karadjordjevo and so
10 A. Well, I don't believe that any of the
11 so-called expert witnesses were present at the event.
12 The discussions of Karadjordjevo have been widely
13 discussions promoted by claims about what happened by,
14 for instance, Mr. Mesic, have been widely distributed
15 in various languages and are available. My point was
16 that one doesn't have to impugn the honesty of the
17 motives of people who believe, I believe, mistakenly in
18 a collusive, persistent pattern of collusion between
19 Zagreb and Belgrade to see that from what I would
20 normally regard as the commonly accepted record of
21 events. It is very difficult to interpret this process
22 of conflict and the disintegration of Yugoslavia in
23 that way.
24 And, for instance, if I may direct one source
25 which is available of one of the people who was a
1 participant, Sarinic, if you like who was the closest
2 advisor to President Tudjman, he makes the point to
3 August 1995 that there was a telephone conversation
4 with Milosevic. Milosevic complains that the Croatian
5 army is serving, is destroying the Bosnian Serb
6 position, is creating the disaster of the Bosnian Serbs
7 and why is Tudjman pushing through such an aggressive
8 policy which is only going to help the Muslims. In
9 other words, that Tudjman is not pursuing a purely
10 Croatian policy, as I remember.
11 Q. Well, if we go back, you see, if I may say
12 so, the beginning of this long answer, you make the
13 point --
14 A. I'm afraid I don't have the text in front of
16 Q. If you press "transcript" on your button, the
17 English transcript will come before you. You make it
18 plain that you believe it to be a mistake that there
19 was any pattern of collusion. You are prepared to
20 express an opinion on what happened at this meeting.
21 Let's just deal with your answer.
22 The man, Sarinic, has written a book but it's
23 in Croatian, of course, isn't it?
24 A. It is in Croatian. I happen to have a copy
25 of it in Croatian and I also have --
1 Q. Have you managed to read all of it?
2 A. I haven't read the whole of it in Croatian.
3 I have checked partly with the Croatian text some of
4 the translations which have made by various services,
5 but I primarily read what I know of it in English.
6 Q. Do you remember the passage in that book
7 where Sarinic refers to a conversation that he and
8 Tudjman had flying over Bolovocelo [phoen]?
9 A. Do you have the text in front of you?
10 Q. I don't think I have it. I didn't know you
11 were going to mention it just then. I just wondered if
12 you remembered that particular passage, perhaps you
14 A. I don't, I'm afraid.
15 Q. Are you now aware that there's now been a
16 book published by Milos Milic which puts together
17 either all or a very great amount of the evidence about
18 the Karadjordjevo meeting?
19 A. I've not seen it, no.
20 Q. Again, it's not in English but you haven't
21 even seen it?
22 A. No.
23 Q. Well, let's look at some of the material that
24 might have been available to you, but before we do,
25 remind me, I may have made a note and I'm sorry if I'm
1 asking you to repeat yourself, but remind me, what do
2 you say happened, in your opinion, at that meeting?
3 A. In my opinion, there was a discussion between
4 the two presidents, Milosevic of Serbia and Tudjman of
5 Croatia, about if Yugoslavia was going to disappear,
6 which was certainly a reasonable prospect, what would
7 succeed it?
8 Part of the tragedy, particularly of the
9 Bosnian Muslims but of the whole population of
10 Bosnia-Hercegovina was, of course, that it was not a
11 republic with a homogenous population as of Slovenia or
12 a large majority of individual group of population as
13 perhaps in Croatia or in Serbia. So that a discussion
14 about what would happen to the Serbs of Serbia, Serbs
15 of Bosnia, I should say, and the Croats of Bosnia and
16 how that might be, as a result, I think, undoubtedly
17 took place.
18 Q. So no question of annexation?
19 A. It depends how -- what you mean by
20 "annexation". I don't -- presumably if two sovereign
21 states, Serbia and Croatia, were created, and
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina either did not become a fully
23 sovereign state or was divided, not necessarily solely
24 between the two states, then part of it would have
25 passed to each of those republics. I do not know
1 whether, as I say, the -- it seems to me that
2 discussion may have taken place, but whether there was
3 planning and certainly whether there was agreement, I
4 find the subsequent developments made highly
6 Q. There's no reason, therefore, to discuss,
7 especially in the absence of a representative in the
8 Muslim community, any partition of the former
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina, in your opinion?
10 A. Well, if I personally think that the
11 dissolution of Bosnia-Herzegovina could have been
12 vastly better arranged, I don't think that anybody
13 would have said that the developments of 1991 were
14 beneficial, in fact, even to the Serbs let alone to
15 Muslims or Croats.
16 Q. No, the question is that we're looking at
17 your opinions. You've given your opinion and we've got
18 to try to evaluate it.
19 A. Yes, of course.
20 Q. In your opinion, would there be any way that
21 these two men could have been discussing a tripartite
22 or bipartite division of the former Bosnia-Herzegovina
23 at that meeting?
24 A. It seems perfectly possible at that meeting
25 and certainly, in my view, likely that the idea that
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina would not become an independent,
2 republic, sovereign state in its boundaries as
3 established under Yugoslav constitution was absolutely
4 part of the discussion.
5 Q. Please, could you deal with the question.
6 Would there be any grounds then without the Muslims
7 present to be discussing partition, whether into two or
8 into three?
9 A. If a plan had been formulated and adopted and
10 acted upon to divide another republic without
11 consultation, that would be, I think, a different
12 matter ethically irreprehensible from a discussion
13 about a discussion about what might -- and my
14 understanding is that this is a discussion about what
15 might have been.
16 As you know, I think, from things that I've
17 published in the past, my own personal preference would
18 have been for a Bosnian-Herzegovinian republic, but I'm
19 not sure in this state of flux between the effective
20 collapse of the monopoly of the Yugoslav League of
21 Communists which had held federal Yugoslavia together
22 and the outbreak of conflict, it is necessarily
23 evidence of criminal intent to discuss alterations to
24 the internal boundaries which subsequently the
25 International Community chose to recognise as the
1 boundaries of sovereign states.
2 Q. As an English reader you would have, of
3 course, count as your sources, English newspaper
4 articles, English television programmes?
5 A. Among them, yes.
6 Q. Therefore, you are presumably familiar with a
7 comparatively recent, was it 1995, 1994, sorry,
8 dispatches programme that dealt with this particular
9 meeting containing some eyewitness account of it?
10 A. I'm trying to remember, there are so many of
12 Q. Let's have a look at it, Exhibit 1682,
13 please. If you push the second button down.
14 A. "Video evidence"?
15 Q. "Video", I think, the top one, you'll get
17 A. Certainly.
18 [Videotape played]
19 MR. NICE:
20 Q. That is plainly material that you perhaps
21 should be aware of. Had you ever seen it before?
22 A. I think in retrospect I did see the
23 programme, yes. On the point -- I don't -- there were
24 two points, if I may make, I'll come back to the second
25 in a second. The actual contents are broadly similar
1 to what I have suggested there were these discussions
2 including possible partition, possibly into three
3 parts, I think I said, but that came to no active
5 On the second point, the programme itself --
6 with music and also the pictures of the two presidents
7 with their wine creates an impression which you could
8 for instance show pictures of Richard Halbrooke or Lord
9 Owen in the same context and dramatise it so on the
10 content --
11 Q. I'm sure I can cut you short, the drama isn't
12 going to affect the Judges. It's what the two
13 witnesses Bilandzic and Letica say. It's not people
14 who you've turned --
15 A. But I know Letica is a well-known figure in
17 Q. They are not people to whom you've turned to
18 for assistance?
19 A. Not directly. I have seen interviews.
20 Q. They make it quite plain that there was an
21 official denial, that means a denial, including to the
22 Muslims of the content of these talks. Why, if it was
23 just concerned with the ultimate security and safety
24 and future of this state, can you think of any reason
25 why there should be just bilateral talks to the
1 exclusion of the third party, please.
2 A. Precisely because the Serb leadership had
3 already made various claims to territory in Croatia and
4 in Bosnia which was in their view either wholly or
5 predominantly inhabited by Serbs. There was a question
6 of how to avoid a conflict. I have made the point
7 already that I don't believe that contacts between
8 Bosnian Muslims and the Serb authorities are
9 necessarily to be seen as reprehensible because they
10 sought to avoid conflict.
11 I think the relations between Tudjman and
12 Milosevic were also not inherently reprehensible and
13 I'm not sure -- clearly apart from anything else, I
14 think if one looks at many international discussions
15 including between leaders who are universally accepted
16 as democratic and legitimate, they often involve
17 denials of what has been discussed because they do not
18 wish to be embarrassed over points which are not
19 necessarily going -- criminal or conspiratorial.
20 Q. I'm going to go back to the question once and
21 then move on to the next piece of evidence. Can you
22 think of any reason why, if they were deciding on the
23 future of this state generally, they were bilateral and
24 why the Muslims were excluded, any good reason?
25 A. Yes. In the context of violence by Serbs in
1 Croatia and the need to, from the point of view of the
2 Croatian government, to calm that conflict and also the
3 need to avoid further conflicts, Tudjman had to talk to
4 somebody who was already widely regarded as Milosevic
5 as deeply reprehensible and unpopular.
6 It would be very foolish of any diplomat, I
7 would suggest, to put all his cards straight on the
8 table. There were, after all, alternatives being
9 discussed and it seems to me that these alternatives,
10 which are not ones that I would necessarily or need --
11 not ones that I would support, nonetheless were part of
12 a broader picture.
13 Q. Well, two points emerge from that, since you
14 raise that as an answer. I'm sorry I'm making a
15 mistake of not leaving a gap. The first point is this,
16 if that was Tudjman's motivation then he should, of
17 course, immediately have gone and discussed things with
18 Izetbegovic explaining what he was doing in the general
19 interest, shouldn't he? And there is no evidence that
20 he ever did.
21 A. That might have been wiser, but it would have
22 been, of course, essential if an agreement had been
23 reached, but your own television interviews suggest
24 that options were discussed not an agreement made.
25 Q. It is a short step -- sorry. My mistake
1 again. It is a short step from any discussion about
2 partition to consideration of annexation; correct?
3 A. Not necessarily.
4 Q. Can we then now please look at the next piece
5 of evidence that you have referred to.
6 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, before you move
7 on, I wanted to ask Mr. Almond this general question.
8 What impact does your conclusion that there
9 was no plan between Croatia and Serbia to partition
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina have on how one looks at the actual
11 conflict between the Bosnian Muslims and the Bosnian
13 A. I see that conflict as being more produced by
14 contingent events in -- after the war breaks out in
15 Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1992, and not the product of a
16 conscious plan by the Croatian government to promote a
17 conflict between Muslims and Serbs, for instance. I
18 have not seen any evidence of that.
19 And as I suggested in response to an earlier
20 question, I think -- I'm not obviously competent, as
21 I'm sure the Prosecution would agree, to comment on the
22 specific events in question with regard to who murdered
23 whom and why in April 1993. But if we look at the
24 context of how this conflict arose, it seems to me that
25 to isolate it from the Serb Muslim conflict and also
1 from the general conflicts that have broken out from
2 June 1991, and in the case of Croatia, even with the
3 quasi-secession of Krajina from August 1990, to isolate
4 the conflicts that broke out in Central Bosnia from
5 that context, I feel -- I believe to be misleading. It
6 is perhaps comforting to feel that there was a
7 structure, a nice neat pattern leading to that
8 conflict. I feel myself that it is a tragic
9 consequence of the Bosnian Serb onslaught against, in
10 this case, primarily the Bosnian Muslims, and how that
11 interacts with the territory that they're pushed into.
12 JUDGE ROBINSON: Thank you.
13 MR. NICE:
14 Q. So before I part from what you've just been
15 saying, in a sentence, the conflict emerges because
16 it's produced by contingent events after the war breaks
17 out. I want to come back to this. But that's your
18 analysis: Produced by contingent events after the war
19 breaks out?
20 A. Yes.
21 MR. NICE: Can we now, please, look at
22 Exhibit 2717, if the witness could have that. And it's
23 an English document, so I think because the Judges
24 don't have their own copies and it's quite a large
25 document, it will be helpful if we simply lay it on the
1 ELMO and look at it.
2 Q. I'm going to ask you to go through various
3 passages of this document and tell me how you say it
4 fits with your theory. It's a document with which
5 you're familiar. It's the record of the meeting on the
6 27th of December of 1991 in Tudjman's office.
7 So if we look at page -- and I'm going to
8 deal with the content of the meeting by topics. If we
9 look at page 8, please. Can I take it, Mr. Almond,
10 that you have in fact looked at and considered the
11 totality of this document?
12 A. Yes.
13 Q. In which case, I'll deal with passages
14 shortly. If you believe that there's a question of
15 context, I'd ask you to tell me.
16 On page 8, we see the president interrupting
17 Kljuic, saying, "Tell me, in these talks about
18 partition, did you get to the heart of the matter?"
19 Kljuic says, "No. They would not commit themselves.
20 We were trying to take them at their word." And then
21 at the top of the next page the president says, "No.
22 It is about partition."
23 If we look at page 21, this is the president
24 speaking, and a long passage. And two lines, three
25 lines down from the top, he says this, as one of the
1 arising questions:
2 "It seems to me, therefore, that just as we
3 have taken advantage of this historic moment to
4 establish an independent internationally recognised
5 Croatia ..."
6 A. Excuse me. I have a different text in front
7 of me.
8 Q. It's higher on the page. Sorry. Right at
9 the top of the page. There we go. Two lines down from
10 the top.
11 "It seems to me, therefore, that just as we
12 have taken advantage of this historic moment to
13 establish an independent internationally recognised
14 Croatia, I believe that it is time that we take the
15 opportunity to gather the Croatian people inside the
16 widest possible borders."
17 And then at the bottom of the same page,
18 after an intervention by Mr. Boban or, a contribution
19 by Mr. Boban:
20 "Let me finish," says the president, "so the
21 discussion can go on. It seems to me, therefore, that
22 with a prudent policy, a clever demarcation and
23 agreement with the Serbs in Bosnia, we can even achieve
24 that instead of war, which is threatening, because of
25 this unresolved issue, the army buildup, that the army
1 will serve as a guarantee for the implementation of
2 such a demarcation."
3 Before I look at the next passages, do none
4 of these passages even suggest to you that Tudjman had
5 partition and annexation in mind?
6 A. It seems, for instance, from the passage
7 you've just quoted, that there was no agreement with
8 the Serbs. That's one point. That he thinks that if
9 the agreement with the Serbs could be achieved -- and
10 we are, of course, talking still at a time when it is
11 not clear that Bosnia-Herzegovina will become an
12 independent state --
13 Q. The question is: Did he --
14 A. And -- sorry.
15 Q. Carry on. Did he not have partition and
16 annexation in mind? What's your opinion?
17 A. A partition was a possibility that had been
18 discussed or was widely touted, because I think a point
19 of common agreement amongst the various people who have
20 been asked to testify on the aspects of whether Croatia
21 regarded -- Croats, sorry, regarded Croats abroad as
22 being foreigners, of course there was this dilemma.
23 People had lived in a common state for a long time. If
24 you were to create borders between them, would you
25 divide populations who had lived together? And we have
1 to remember that the armed conflict in Croatia itself
2 was, to put it at best, on ice at this stage.
3 Q. Could we look at page 55, over to 56, just
4 picking it up for context at the foot of 55. At the
5 bottom of 55, he asks -- the president asks if anybody
6 else wants to speak. And it says that the discussion
7 has shown that this meeting is not necessary -- was
8 necessary and that differences surfacing are not
9 accidental, conditioned by the problem of Bosnia and
10 Herzegovina itself.
11 And then over to page 56, he says:
12 "All of history has shown that Bosnia and
13 Herzegovina is no solution for the Croatian people.
14 First of all, gentlemen, let us not forget that it,
15 Bosnia, was created in the colonial conquest of an
16 Asian power at the expense of the Croatian people and
17 Croatian territories between the 15th and 18th
18 centuries. All colonial creations throughout history
19 fell, both in Africa and Asia. Bosnia and Herzegovina
20 did not exist between the two world wars. The
21 communists invented it, put it back on the map after
22 World War II, even declared the Muslims to be a nation,
23 in order to supposedly resolve the differences between
24 the Serbian and Croatian people. Did they succeed?
25 No. On the contrary. Therefore, Bosnia and
1 Herzegovina should not be taken as something God-given,
2 which must be preserved, and we must especially not
3 forget how harmful it is."
4 What do you say to that passage?
5 A. I think if you read the next paragraph, you
6 can see that he makes the point that the existence of
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina creates what he calls an impossible
8 situation with regard -- regarding its territory,
9 regarding administration, not to mention defence: "We
10 cannot establish an independent Croatia such as it
11 is." Part of the problem of anybody looking at the map
12 would be to say that the territorial shape of Croatia
13 is problematic in all sorts of aspects, and
14 particularly, as I say, in this context where we have
15 had the war with Serbia which has made use of
17 Q. Precisely so, Mr. Almond. What the president
18 was saying was, "We need a chunk of Bosnia to make
19 ourselves more viable," simple as that.
20 A. I'm not sure it's quite so simple as that at
21 all. If we look at the various proposals at different
22 times, the Croatian leadership had talked as though the
23 integration of the Croats into Bosnia was the only
24 solution because of the war situation. At other times
25 they looked to a common state.
1 I remember, for instance, discussing with
2 Muhamed Sacirbeg the various times -- the Bosnian
3 government ambassador to the United Nations, at a
4 conference in Crans, Montana in 1996, and he made a
5 point which was that the Croats had proposed various
6 integrations between Bosnia and Croatia which would
7 render -- would, for instance, have a common currency.
8 He took the view, as I remember him, that this would of
9 course mean that there would be complete integration of
10 the two states. Whether that is necessarily malign is
11 a different point.
12 On your -- sorry.
13 Q. Let's just look over at page 57, because we
14 want to deal with it as swiftly as we can while giving
15 you a chance to comment on all the passages that I'm
16 going to suggest to you show your theory to be wholly
17 groundless. Page 57, about eight lines up from the
18 bottom, but start at a fresh paragraph. The president
19 is still speaking.
20 "The Croatian Democratic Union ..." Shall
21 we put it on the ELMO? "The Croatian Democratic Union
22 and the state leadership of Croatia have not changed.
23 There have been no changes. No. But because we -- I
24 shall not repeat what all you said -- we said that for
25 tactical reasons we were in favour of a sovereign
1 Bosnia, so long as it existed, but there is no longer a
2 sovereign Bosnia."
3 What does that say to you, please,
4 Mr. Almond, about partition being in the president's
5 mind, and annexation?
6 A. Well, he carries on to say, "The Serbs have
7 split off. You have no authority. The Bosnian
8 government has no authority over the Serbian
9 sections." And above the paragraph you quote, I
10 believe he makes the point that he has spoken with
11 Izetbegovic in private talks with Milosevic, in talks
12 with both of them. There was discussion of how to find
13 a solution -- such a solution which would satisfy both
14 the Croatian and Serbian people as well as the
15 Muslims. It was discussed.
16 So I think the picture in the document that
17 you cite, or the Prosecution cites, is somewhat more
18 complex, and particularly if we remember this point,
19 which seems to come out of the direct citations you
20 make, that the authority of the government in Sarajevo
21 over the territory of the Republic of
22 Bosnia-Herzegovina was collapsing. Until this stage --
23 and there are many more lawyers. Although I'm not a
24 lawyer, there are lawyers here. Usually in
25 international law the British government would
1 recognise the government only if it controlled the
2 territory of its state. That may have changed after
3 the event, but not at this time, and therefore I think
4 the connotation you put upon these words, particularly
5 taken away from the context on either side, makes them
6 more aggressive than in fact they need to be seen as.
7 Q. Surely, surely, Mr. Almond, the words I've
8 read out to you, and I'm happy that you put them in
9 their context indeed, the words make it quite clear
10 that whatever was being said in public in favour of a
11 sovereign Bosnia no longer applied and Tudjman had a
12 different object in mind, don't they?
13 A. I think Tudjman was not in charge of events,
14 so that observing the developments, the hope, which it
15 seems implicit in what he says, that a sovereign Bosnia
16 breaking away from Yugoslavia would not therefore be a
17 launching pad for Serbian power, also vis-a-vis
18 Croatia, that at this stage in late December no longer
19 seems to be viable.
20 Q. Last on this topic and this run-through of
21 the document, although I shall take you to some other
22 pages, page 66. The whole of what the president says
23 in this short passage, so that there's context:
24 "That is what it's about. Therefore, what is
25 being said in some circles, that they created
1 Herceg-Bosna of their own will, or at my instructions,
2 is not true. It is not true. They and you both, and
3 each in a somewhat one-sided way, without sufficient
4 coordination, implemented the general policy, and the
5 general policy was to preserve sovereignty until a
6 certain moment so long as it was convenient for
7 Croatia. Now it is no longer convenient. So what they
8 did is exactly what you are saying. The Croats do not
9 want to join Serboslavia; therefore, this is the road
10 we need to take to achieve a Croatian state which will
11 be better in every respect."
12 Can you fit that to anything other than a
13 clear expression of intent to take some of the spoils
14 of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
15 A. It seems to me to be making the point that
16 Serboslavia, which was a common term for the idea of a
17 continued Belgrade-dominated state led presumably by
18 Mr. Milosevic, was something that Croats would not wish
19 to join, and therefore, in the context of the apparent
20 imminent breakdown of Bosnia-Herzegovina as a republic
21 and its unlikelihood of it becoming a sovereign state,
22 that those parts which were predominantly inhabited by
23 Croats would naturally, in his view, wish to join
25 Q. So at last, you accept that there is in his
1 mind the question of parts of Bosnia being linked to
3 A. I make the point that if the choice is
4 between a Bosnian-Herzegovinian republic that remains
5 part of a Yugoslav state dominated, after all,
6 politically and militarily by the people who have just
7 attacked Dubrovnik and Vukovar, it would not be either
8 desirable or acceptable to the Croats there, or to
9 Croats in general, that that state should come about,
10 because a glance at the map would show that the threat
11 to the remaining -- the independence of the remaining
12 Croatian states, 30 per cent approximately, occupied by
13 Serbs, would be mortal. I think that Serboslavia in
14 this context is a very important term. It is not,
15 after all, saying they don't want to be in
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina necessarily.
17 Q. Are you now accepting that it is clear that
18 the possibility of a bit of Bosnia joining Croatia is
19 under discussion?
20 A. In the context of the collapse of
21 Bosnia-Herzegovina into -- under the control of the
22 still existing Yugoslav state which I think that is, I
23 imagine, what he meant by Serboslavia.
24 Q. And why do you first set out in writing your
25 acknowledgment that this form of annexation was first
1 considered in your writing or in your report?
2 A. I'm not sure that it's a form of annexation
3 in that my understanding of this potential process is
4 that the inhabitants, the Croatia inhabitants primarily
5 of Bosnia-Herzegovina would not wish to live -- would
6 not wish to live in such a state and would seek the
7 obvious protection of their obvious protector which
8 would be Croatia. He takes that for granted.
9 Q. The answer to my question, please --
10 reformulate the question as you like -- where in your
11 writings do you ever acknowledge that there was going
12 to be joinder or that there might have been joinder of
13 part of Bosnia-Herzegovina to Croatia? First of all,
14 is it in your report?
15 A. It's not explicitly in the report, because
16 the report deals with the relevant sections of why
17 there were tensions between Croats -- why Croats might
18 fear the preservation of a Yugoslav state, even a
19 diminishing one containing Bosnia-Herzegovina.
20 Q. You've read all this document which I've
21 taken you through, or some bits of it. It's clear that
22 however we use the word "annexation" or "joinder" was
23 being considered, you've now given an explanation for
24 how that comes about in the discussions. Didn't you
25 think it important, given your divergence from
1 Dr. Donia's views, to give your full understanding of
2 how these topics came to be discussed?
3 A. Well, I presume, for instance, that this
4 document was available to the Court.
5 Q. But the Court is prepared to accept or listen
6 to your opinions on these matters, for that's the
7 reason you're here.
8 A. But I -- given --
9 Q. May I take it, and we'll move on, that
10 nowhere in writing have you ever recorded your opinion
11 that there could have been the joinder of part of
12 Bosnia to Croatia?
13 A. I'm not certain that I've never discussed,
14 either in writing or in some verbal interview, that
15 this prospect, at various times, might have been
16 discussed. I think that's perfectly possible. But my
17 key point is: I was asked specifically with regard to
18 the allegation that from Karadjordjevo onwards there
19 was a consistent policy, and it seems to me that even
20 the document that you cite at length shows that this is
21 a discussion in the dilemma in the late part of 1991,
22 when the war between Serbia and Croatia had not stopped
23 and the establishment of a sovereign independent
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina is still, by no means, clearly going
25 to take place.
1 Q. You've taken into account, have you, that
2 this was five days after the presidency had decided to
3 seek independence?
4 A. But I think further back in this document,
5 you will see, one of the participants in the meeting
6 nonetheless says he doesn't really believe they will.
7 You yourself have drawn attention, or the Prosecution
8 has drawn attention, to the disparity between public
9 statements and private intentions. And I'm afraid if
10 we also remember the international context, it was not
11 at all clear that either the European Community states,
12 and certainly not the United States, would necessarily
13 recognise Bosnia-Herzegovina. The lack of such
14 recognition which was not, as I say, at all clear would
15 mean that the viability of the republic as a state
16 would be even more in question, sadly, than it was
17 because of the operations of the Bosnian Serb forces
18 already in development.
19 Q. Well, I'm going to stick with the immediate
20 topic, with one more piece of evidence. And I may come
21 back to that document, so we won't take it away for the
22 time being. No doubt one of your sources of
23 information is what's said in these trials.
24 A. I have read some press reports, but apart
25 from looking up Dr. Donia's contribution, which I've
1 subsequently received in text form, I haven't had
2 access to the transcripts of the trial, so it -- my
3 sources are press reports.
4 Q. Very well. Some of the events in these
5 trials have gained a little publicity, and perhaps now
6 the witness could see Exhibit 2486. You will remember,
7 probably while it's coming to you, that evidence has
8 been given by Paddy Ashdown about his banquet on the
9 6th of May, and this is straight from the hand of
10 Tudjman and it's about as clear a diagram as you could
12 The next page, please, the page that
13 conveniently dates the banquet at which he drew this
14 diagram, and if you'll look at it. Have you seen it
16 A. In the press, I think The Times published it.
17 Q. Have a look at it, because it's not entirely
18 straightforward. The present Bosnia-Herzegovina
19 border, obviously very much an approximation, has the
20 lines with the criss-crosses around it, and the future
21 Serbian-Croatian border, an "S" shape, is revealed, as
22 are the present front lines and Sarajevo. Simple case
23 of annexation even more generous to Croatia than the
24 banovina; correct?
25 A. The territorial division on this very
1 approximate map might be, but I disagree with your
2 argument simple case of annexation, because we would
3 need to know the explanation given for the map. And if
4 I may draw the attention of the Court to the context,
5 in May of 1995 the Bosnian Serb forces seemed to be in
6 an even stronger strategic position than they had been
8 The elimination, which I regard in whole the
9 prospect, but it was a prospect that the remaining
10 territory controlled by the Bosnian government in
11 Sarajevo would be overrun. As you will remember, in
12 July of 1995, Zepce, Srebrenica were overrun with
13 generally accepted horrific consequences.
14 Therefore, the designation of this very
15 approximate territorial division seems to me to
16 indicate possibly, since I wasn't present at the
17 conversation, unless you have evidence of what was
18 said, that Tudjman may have been already envisaging his
19 military operations which took place to reverse the
20 Serb control of Krajina and Slavonia, and ultimately
21 his intervention on the side of the Bosnian government
22 in the context where it seems the International
23 Community, despite its recognition of
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina, had abandoned it to its fate.
25 Q. But you haven't actually considered what
1 Mr. Ashdown had said.
2 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the counsel,
4 A. There were certain press reports of what he
6 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the
7 counsel. Microphone for the counsel, please.
8 MR. NICE:
9 Q. What did he say -- you're making your
10 opinions, you see, on the basis of sources available to
11 you. Here is as close a source to Tudjman's mind as
12 you can get.
13 A. Well, I'm afraid the force --
14 MR. SAYERS: Mr. President, if I may, some of
15 that testimony was given in closed session, and that
16 should be borne in mind as the answer to this question
17 is being given.
18 A. The source has been --
19 JUDGE MAY: I'm not sure that we are
20 assisted, Mr. Nice, by the witness' comments on
21 what -- or his recollection of what Mr. Ashdown may or
22 may not have said.
23 MR. NICE: Very well.
24 JUDGE MAY: The point of the matter is that
25 we have the evidence of Mr. Ashdown in transcript form
1 and we've had -- we've got the plan, and we've got the
2 witness' comments on it.
3 MR. NICE: Very well.
4 Q. Can we move then, without prejudice, to the
5 fact that I may come back to the meeting in December
6 1991 to Graz. Just tell us, please: What do you know
7 about that, so you can tell us what your understanding
9 A. I -- as I understand it, Boban and Karadzic
10 met and had discussions, which do not seem to have
11 reached an agreement, on the future shape of
13 Q. Well, what, if anything, did they agree on?
14 A. I am not certain.
15 Q. Your approach, or am I wrong, doesn't really
16 allow for there to be any bilateral agreements between
17 Serbia and Croatia at that time, does it?
18 A. Well, these are not between Serbia and
19 Croatia but between Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian Croats,
20 but also that there were contacts, either direct
21 meetings or telephonic contacts, between various
22 leaders, including the Bosnian government side and
23 opponents, I think, is generally accepted.
24 Q. But please stick with the question. Your
25 approach, your analysis of events doesn't really allow
1 for any concluded agreements, secret or otherwise,
2 between Bosnian Serbs and Bosnian Croats?
3 A. It doesn't allow for the implementation and
4 consistent collaboration, because I do not believe that
5 took place, and I believe the evidence on the ground
6 suggests that that didn't take place.
7 Q. 92.1, please, Exhibit 92.1. This starts off
8 next -- well, it starts off with a fax message to
9 Sarajevo all within the monitoring mission, and we go
10 on to the next page from Cutilliero to a colleague
12 "Could you, in your conference capacity, try
13 to elucidate with the principals the exact terms and
14 meaning of their alleged agreement and Muslim views on
15 the matter? We have not been able to speak on the
16 telephone for a few days. Warmest congratulations on
17 your work from Lord Carrington and from me."
18 And the next page is dated the 7th of May and
20 "Boban and Karadzic have reached an
21 agreement at a meeting concerning the resolution of all
22 the differences between the two nations through
23 conciliatory means, including the territorial
24 delimitation under the auspices of the European
25 Community. They reassured firmly the agreement of the
1 principles defined in the conference in Lisbon. There
2 is no further reason for the continuation of armed
3 conflicts between the Serbs and the Croats. The
4 territorial delimitation between the nations will be
5 made until the 15th of May. Cease-fire will be decreed
6 from today."
7 And if you turn over, please, the next page
8 is the agreement:
9 "Our intention being to resolve peacefully,
10 and by agreement, all outstanding issues, including the
11 border line between our two constituent units."
12 Then to save time, (1) is the Neretva River
13 in Mostar; (2), the area delineated in 1939; (3), both
14 sides agree that in defining the border line between
15 the two units, accounts should be taken of compactness
16 of areas; (4), both sides resolved in their adherence
17 to the principles adopted in the conference; (5), the
18 agreement makes invalid the reasons for the suspension
19 of the EC conference, insists that the demarcation
20 under arbitration be implemented by agreed-upon date of
21 May 15th; (6), in view of the agreement outline above,
22 no more reasons obtained for an armed conflict between
23 the Croatians and the Serbs in the entire territory of
25 Obviously not a document you've seen before.
1 A. Well, I made -- in the answer to the previous
2 question, the point I was making was that were these
3 agreements implemented and carried out. You see, you
4 have raised -- or the Prosecution raises a different
5 point. An agreement, to me, and if this can clarify
6 it, means something that is implemented. Was the --
7 this agreement implemented? Was it persistently abided
9 Q. I'll try and find my question. I can't deal
10 with it -- the machine is too complicated -- but I
11 think I asked you quite specifically: Was there any
12 ground for these people making this agreement? Is this
13 not an agreement that's been made?
14 A. It was the document side of an agreement, but
15 it was an agreement, if I remember correctly, that was
16 a dead duck.
17 Q. It's not an agreement which you had any
18 recollection when I asked you about it.
19 A. I have not read the -- I have not recollected
20 the details of the text with, as you say, the specific
21 points about the --
22 Q. Have you ever seen this document before?
23 A. I had seen a report of the agreement. I
24 didn't say I had seen this direct text.
25 Q. Let's go over, just again, to save time --
1 the two sheets are headed "Press Release." At a
2 meeting late on -- this comes from just a press
3 release, Ian Greer Associates.
4 A. Indeed.
5 Q. "At a meeting late Wednesday in the town of
6 Graz, the leader of the Bosnian Serbian Democratic
7 Party, Mr. Karadzic, signed a peace agreement." It
8 goes on to set out "with cease-fire," and so on. This
9 was a well-reported -- or a report, in any event,
10 concluded agreement. What does that tell you about the
11 attitude of the Croats to the Bosnian Muslims at that
13 A. Part of the agreement which you yourself
14 created is the adherence to the European Community
15 principles, and even Mr. Greer's press statement refers
16 to three separate states, or, in other words,
17 implicitly not a clear partition between Serbs and
18 Croats. I haven't, of course, seen Mr. Greer's press
19 release before. Mr. Greer, of course, a figure of some
20 controversy because of his activities as a public
21 relations consultant, but only for the Bosnian Serbs.
22 Q. I can't show you these documents in English
23 because we've only just obtained them and they aren't
24 yet translated, I'm afraid, but you're aware, aren't
25 you, that Zagreb is turning over quite a lot of
1 documents at the moment?
2 A. I'm aware of press reports about this matter.
3 Q. If there are documents in due course, and in
4 1993 from a man called Rajic in Kiseljak, making it
5 absolutely clear that he is negotiating directly with
6 the Serbs over the supply of the weapons with even a
7 price list, what do you say about that? How does that
8 fit with your overall theories?
9 A. As you say, I haven't had the opportunity to
10 see these documents and I would not comment. I think
11 in my book I make the point that war is very corrupt,
12 and you will find examples on all sides of
13 cross-conflict cooperation, sadly, and not just in this
14 war, but without these documents are completely unknown
15 to me, you -- the source of them, the verification of
16 them, is something which I know nothing, so it would be
17 very foolish to waste the time of the Court to comment.
18 Q. Well, I'm going to ask you to, in any event,
19 because they are documents, as we understand it, that
20 have been provided by Zagreb to the Defence and the
21 Prosecution and, in fact, to all parties. They will
22 therefore be understood by the native speakers in the
23 Defence, even though they have to be translated for
24 some of those working on the Prosecution. The Judges
25 may, in due course, see them and they may or may not
1 make their mind up.
2 But if, in 1993, we find Rajic in Kiseljak
3 negotiating directly with the Serbs over the supply of
4 weapons, what does that do to your theory, please?
5 Does it harm it?
6 A. Well, as I say, I have no knowledge of these
7 documents. That individual's -- clearly the whole
8 point of this trial is that somebody did dastardly
9 things. But for me to comment on these documents
10 whose, as I say, selection and provision is something
11 and authenticity is something about which I know
12 nothing, would be, I think, wrong.
13 MR. SAYERS: In addition, Your Honour, if I
14 may object. We haven't received any such documents
15 along the line that the Prosecution is talking about,
16 and I don't think it's right to put propositions based
17 upon documents which may or may not exist and certainly
18 which have not been translated yet and not been
19 provided to us.
20 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let's go on.
21 MR. NICE: Your Honour, my plan is to ask a
22 few more questions before 1.00. I'll then regroup,
23 tidy up, and deal with the outstanding matters as
24 quickly as I can after the break.
25 I've discussed with Mr. Sayers the next
1 witness can probably be taken in chief this afternoon,
2 if that's convenient.
3 JUDGE MAY: I think, Mr. Nice, there is a
4 problem about these documents which nobody's seen which
5 are not in the language of the Tribunal, and normally,
6 of course, one would want a document to be in the
7 language of the Tribunal before a witness is invited to
8 comment on it.
9 MR. NICE: Yes.
10 JUDGE MAY: And also, the other side should
11 have a copy of it. So unless the circumstances are
12 exceptional, the better way for dealing with it would
13 be for the matter to be dealt with by way of rebuttal
14 evidence, unless there's a particular point for a
15 witness, in which case, of course, you can apply to the
16 Court for leave to put it to him. But I think it would
17 be better for you, in future, to apply for leave so we
18 can have it discussed first.
19 MR. NICE: Yes. And my concern, of course,
20 is to give the expert witnesses, in particular, an
21 opportunity to comment on documents if it's helpful for
22 them to do so, but there it is.
23 Q. Can I come --
24 [Trial Chamber confers]
25 MR. NICE:
1 Q. In what remains before the lunch adjournment,
2 can you please take your report and go to page 31. You
3 say in this paragraph, in this page, on the penultimate
4 paragraph: "It has been alleged that the
5 interpreters," plural --
6 A. This is page 31?
7 Q. Thirty-one of your report.
8 A. I'm sorry. Yes, I found it.
9 Q. "... that the interpreters and local
10 personnel employed by BritBat, as well as other
11 international agencies and NGOs in the area, came
12 predominantly from a Muslim background. Emotional
13 entanglements between male officers and female locally
14 employed staff from one group could well have distorted
15 perceptions of developments."
16 Is that seriously your proposition?
17 A. Yes. I think the House of Commons Defence
18 Committee has reported inter alia on the so-called
19 problem of overstretch, and it has said that one of the
20 problems for the British army, both in recruiting and
21 retaining people, is caused by long periods of
22 separation from families, the breakdown of marriage.
23 That is one aspect of it.
24 Secondly, it is a general problem, not so --
25 I'm not suggesting that this is some peculiar vice or
1 flaw of members of BritBat, but it is an observable,
2 sociological phenomenon of deployment in foreign
3 territories abroad.
4 Q. And you're seriously suggesting, are you,
5 that the whole reporting of this war by professional
6 soldiers, whatever their consistency, before this
7 Tribunal may have been infected by their emotional
9 A. I'm not suggesting their whole reporting,
10 because, as you will have read, I make the point that
11 other aspects of the briefing material that, as far as
12 I know, was provided to them, would tend to encourage
13 them to take a more hostile view of the Croats than of
14 the Muslims. I made the point that, for instance, I
15 addressed -- I had a lecture at the staff college at
16 Camberley, and the nature of the questions and the
17 comments was suggestive to me of people who had, since
18 they had no necessary reason to be interested in the
19 area, apart from what they were being trained to be
20 deployed, that part of the problem was that there was a
21 bias against the Croats, and secondarily. So these
22 sorts of problems might encourage.
23 But the perception -- you see, I think the
24 great problem is people can be honestly biased. There
25 are two types of bias, if you like. There is somebody
1 who is deliberately making a propagandistic point, and
2 then there are people who honestly believe what they
3 believe but may be mistaken, and that certain factors
4 go together to create their perceptions.
5 Q. How are you -- just help us with this, from
6 your -- was it a single briefing at Camberley? How
7 were you able to say that that was, however
8 unintentionally, biased? In what way was it biased?
9 How are you right and they wrong?
10 A. Because the expression -- I mentioned earlier
11 in answer to a previous question the kind of attitudes
12 towards the Croats, weren't they all fascist during the
13 war and so on, asking about the historical context,
14 suggested to me that that was the kind of assumption
15 that was there.
16 Q. Tell us, please, so that we can have chapter
17 and verse and, if necessary, explore it. Who was
18 saying this?
19 A. There were both -- I gave a talk, there were
20 questions and answers, and also there were brief
21 private conversations.
22 Q. You gave a talk and were able to put the
23 record straight to those who asked you questions that
24 were, in a sense, ill-conceived, if they were.
25 A. Yes. Whether I put the record straight is
1 obviously a matter of judgement.
2 Q. Back to the interpreters, because you've used
3 plural, who are these interpreters? What's their
4 names? Who are the officers whose perception may have
5 been affected?
6 MR. BROWNING: Your Honour, if we are going
7 to be discussing a topic like this --
8 JUDGE MAY: I'm sorry. I can't -- can you
9 speak more clearly?
10 MR. BROWNING: If a matter such as this is
11 going to be probed by Mr. Nice, perhaps it would make
12 sense to go into closed session briefly.
13 JUDGE MAY: Why?
14 MR. BROWNING: I'm sorry. Private session.
15 JUDGE MAY: Why?
16 MR. BROWNING: To the extent that he's asked
17 specifics about specific individuals, specific British
19 JUDGE MAY: I can't see there's any
20 embarrassment about that, unless the witness feels
21 it -- if the witness thinks that it's an embarrassing
22 matter, of course we'll consider it, but it doesn't
23 seem to me that it's immediately a matter for a private
25 But Mr. Almond, can you answer the question
1 or not?
2 A. In the press reports about this matter, in,
3 for instance, the so-called documentary drama broadcast
4 by the BBC Warriors.
5 MR. NICE:
6 Q. It's Warriors.
7 A. No, it isn't. There are widely reported -- I
8 am also, as the Prosecution has pointed out, because I
9 too use interpreters and observe people using
10 interpreters, not only in the former Yugoslavia but in
11 other places, that there is simply a professional
12 difficulty that arises of objectivity. And that seems
13 to me to be reasonable without going into the question
14 of individuals.
15 JUDGE MAY: Yes. I think we've taken this as
16 far as we can. Anything more on this topic, Mr. Nice?
17 MR. NICE: Not at that particular topic, no.
18 That's a convenient moment.
19 JUDGE MAY: Half past 2.00.
20 --- Luncheon recess taken at 1.00 p.m.
1 --- On resuming at 2.36 p.m.
2 JUDGE MAY: Yes, Mr. Nice.
3 MR. NICE:
4 Q. Mr. Almond, I think it's a reality, is it
5 not, that you have very strong views of your own
6 regardless of your views on current affairs that you
7 analyse, but you have strong views of your own about,
8 for example, British involvement in the former
10 A. I have views of my own, yes.
11 Q. You, I suspect, think that it was entirely
12 wrong for the British to be led into what they did via
13 the European union; would that be right?
14 A. Few people, I think, today, would say that
15 the consequences were beneficial.
16 Q. No, I think --
17 A. So I think it was wrong to --
18 Q. Quite specifically, you are against the
19 British involvement with the European union, for
21 A. In Yugoslavia?
22 Q. Yes.
23 A. I think that Britain, of course, played a
24 leading role and the policies were mistaken, yes.
25 Q. You now, I think, take firmly the view that
1 Croatia is unwise in selling itself out to the European
2 union; is that right?
3 A. I think the -- whether this is relevant to
4 the case in hand along with other applicants state
5 during the European union the conditions required to be
6 met create a great deal of economic hardship and are
7 not advantageous to the populations of almost all the
8 applicant states, if this is relevant to the case.
9 Q. You also take the view personally, and I'm
10 simply putting, as you would probably guess, some of
11 the comments that you think you made earlier this year
12 with Hrvatska Sloba in April?
13 A. Mm-hmm.
14 Q. I think you also take the view that with the
15 demise of communism, the west has become a less
16 tolerant and liberal place and that there's some
17 preponderance of socialist mentality permeating Europe?
18 A. I think it is a great irony of the post cold
19 war period that there is less diversity and debate
20 about a range of issues including foreign policy
22 Q. In short, no complaint about this, of course,
23 but in short, you are fundamentally a fairly
24 right-wing --
25 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Nice, I don't think this is
1 going to help us.
2 MR. NICE: Can I explain why because I've
3 just come to it.
4 Q. Your book, as long ago as what, 1994, had a
5 particular acknowledgment to Maja Freundlich, didn't
7 A. Yes.
8 Q. And she was in the HDZ as its vice-president?
9 A. Was she then its vice-president?
10 Q. If not then, she has been.
11 A. As far as I know, she has only recently
12 become active in the politics of the HDZ within fact
13 literally the last few weeks or two or three months.
14 Q. And she is again perhaps on an extreme wing;
15 would you accept that?
16 A. I think you can have a minority position
17 without, perhaps, being extreme. Extreme implies that
18 you are anti-democratic or something rather than simply
19 one disagrees with, perhaps, the majority position.
20 Q. Have you, in fact, since the beginning of
21 your work on Yugoslavia had rather close connections
22 with the HDZ, because you actually share some of their
23 political ideology?
24 A. I have no connections formally speaking with
25 any political party. I've talked with a variety of
1 people from all political parties.
2 Q. Because I want to you look, please, at one
3 part of your report towards the end where you express,
4 it may be, views that are critical of England or
5 English people. If you go right to the end of your
6 report, 31, I think, will start us off.
7 A. Mm-hmm.
8 Q. Well, we've already dealt with the report so
9 we can probably go to page 32. Incidentally, just
10 before we go to part or finally from the report as at
11 issue, would you accept that at important meetings
12 wherever possible, the British army used where possible
13 its own interpreters?
14 A. It had, I believe, two native speakers of
15 Serbo-Croat, a certain Islamic who has written his
16 memoirs, as you probably know, or the Court will be
17 aware, Milos Stankovic.
18 Q. And would you accept that one of the most
19 loyal interpreters who was tragically shot was not a
20 Muslim at all, and he was one of the senior
22 A. Yes. I don't think I've said that all --
23 Q. Thank you. Page 32, you start dealing with
24 Ahmici. Now, from what you've told us already, there
25 is nothing you can tell us about the events at Ahmici
1 yourself; is that right?
2 A. Precisely what my report is about is how this
3 was -- this terrible event was presented in the media.
4 Q. But you have no, and you don't wish to offer
5 us any personal view on what may have happened there?
6 A. I think the Court has got vast amounts of
7 evidence from people who are infinitely better
8 qualified than I am to say what happened to cause the
9 horrible amount of murders.
10 Q. Well, if we look at the middle of the page,
11 there's this paragraph:
12 "In the days running up to the discovery and
13 the publicity circus surrounding the Ahmici massacre,
14 the Serb offensive around Srebrenica had put reluctant
15 western governments, especially the British one, under
16 pressure to use military force to prevent Serb gains.
17 It was certainly convenient that more than one village
18 should appear on stage to muddy the Bosnian waters."
19 What does that mean?
20 A. It means what it says. The British
21 government and other governments who had contributed
22 forces to UNPROFOR, whereas the ministers and so on had
23 publicly stated they did not wish to be drawn into a
24 conflict, no doubt for the reason they did not wish for
25 there to be lightly armed British and other soldiers to
1 be subject to the risks of conflict.
2 At the same time, as I quote further on in
3 the text, because of the Bosnian Serb offensive at
4 Srebrenica, there was a very considerable clamour in
5 the British parliament and in other places, in other
6 governments, and also in the British press. It clearly
7 was not to the advantage of the Bosnian Serbs to face
8 an intervention by NATO forces which might -- those
9 forces on the ground might be lightly armed and
10 ill-equipped, but others might be drawn in who were
11 much heavily armed and better equipped.
12 I simply mean that this horrible massacre was
13 something that caused, despite, no doubt, their dislike
14 or horror at the actual events, certain relief that
15 that public pressure would be relieved.
16 Q. We must look at what follows. The rest of
17 page 32, page 33, and over to 34, sets out all about
18 the revelations. You may not have got it accurate, but
19 it sets out what you know about the revelations of
20 Ahmici and when it came to be broadcast and
21 publicised. You're suggesting there a delay in
22 publication. What is true as opposed to the unstated
23 nature of your allegation, please?
24 A. [Indiscernible] -- that there was a delay.
25 Q. Yes. But what's --
1 A. Well, that, for instance, the press were then
2 taken to the site and that the reading of the
3 consequences of this massacre from the point of view of
4 the global conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina, that
5 involving the Bosnian Serbs, was now converted because
6 this became the main issue in the media; and other
7 issues, particularly the Bosnian Serb offensive around
8 Srebrenica was pushed onto the back burner.
9 Q. I dare say. But what I want to know is:
10 What are you seeking to say about any underlying
11 pulling of strings, if this is your case, that led to a
12 delay in reporting?
13 A. I'm not sure -- I think -- the point was that
14 although the event had taken place, as far as I can
15 tell, several days before the media had access to the
16 site with, presumably, their various satellite dishes
17 and other things to directly report it, that the
18 British government, as I say, in a sense, because it
19 confirmed their argument -- they have, of course, had
20 this argument, you know. It was to some extent a
21 confirmation of their argument that one could not
22 regard a particular party to the conflict in
23 Bosnia-Herzegovina as being overwhelmingly responsible
24 and therefore perhaps a suitable subject for
25 international intervention against it.
1 Q. But that would not favour delay in -- sorry.
2 I'll just wait. But that's not going to favour delay
3 in reporting. And because I don't want to take too
4 long over this, will you please go on page 34 to the
5 first fresh paragraph, which begins: "Even Lord
6 Owen ..." And the last four lines of that paragraph
7 says as follows:
8 "The coincidence of the discovery of the
9 Ahmici massacre, with the crescendo of international
10 concern about the fate of Srebrenica and the dilemma
11 posed especially to the British government as the major
12 force provider for UNPROFOR, along with France, was
13 painfully obvious at the time."
14 Well, now, I want to know, please, first of
15 all, obvious to whom? Second, you've spent whatever it
16 is, a couple of pages, and more, setting out simply a
17 history of observations and then saying that the
18 discovery is painfully obvious and is a coincidence.
19 What are you really saying here? Anything?
20 A. What I'm saying is that in April of 1993 the
21 governments who provided the forces to UNPROFOR felt
22 themselves under a great deal of pressure to intervene
23 militarily, which they did not wish to do. Until the
24 outbreak of conflict between the Croats and the Bosnian
25 Muslims, and until particularly this crime in Ahmici,
1 the argument which had been repeatedly put forward by
2 government spokesmen in Britain, ministers and others,
3 that all sides in the Balkans were much of a muchness
4 and equally responsible, was increasingly fraying
5 precisely because there had not been an atrocity of the
6 sort that occurred.
7 Now, you might say to me, therefore, I am
8 proven wrong to say that the Serbs are primarily
9 responsible. What I'm saying is that this tragic and
10 horrible event was certainly used and presented in the
11 media as an explanation as to why those people who felt
12 that intervention to stop the conflict were wrong.
13 I quote, I think, Sir Malcolm Refkin making
14 the point that those who said, "Raise the arms embargo
15 to assist the Muslims" would now find themselves
16 providing weapons to people fighting as if via a
17 secondary civil war.
18 And with regard to the delay, I imagine that
19 that revolved around technical issues, but you could
20 say that it was obviously an important point, and
21 certainly the event was horrible, that the British
22 armed forces facilitated the exposure of this event,
23 this evidence, televisual evidence, in the media.
24 Q. It may be, would you accept this, that but
25 for people like Martin Bell and Bob Stewart, the Croats
1 would never have divulged what happened in Ahmici at
3 JUDGE MAY: I think that's a matter of
5 MR. NICE:
6 Q. Could you go please, then, to the last
7 paragraph on page 34 and help us with that. I'm going
8 to come back to what you said above about coincidence.
9 "Any understanding of the tragic events of
10 mid-April cannot take at face value the assertions of
11 any of the participants. All of them," and you then
12 say this, "including quite clearly the British military
13 participants in UNPROFOR, had, and may well still have,
14 political agendas of their own. Bias there was,
15 certainly enough, on all sides. To privilege the
16 testimony of any one set of participants as ex officio
17 reliable and to fly in the face of the evidence."
18 Well, please, what are you suggesting there?
19 And in particular, what, if anything, are you
20 suggesting about either the reliability of British
21 UNPROFOR witnesses or the British who reported Ahmici?
22 A. As I explained earlier, I think there are --
23 bias is not necessarily a conscious form of dishonesty,
24 that is the first point. Secondly, as I've just
25 explained, it was the official line, not only of the
1 British government but, by extension, expected of
2 British military participants that they should not say
3 or do anything that obviously went against British
5 In a free society it's perfectly reasonable
6 for me, for citizens to criticise a policy. Obviously,
7 military personnel are put in a difficult position if
8 they do not necessarily agree with it.
9 Q. You no more have a shred of evidence to
10 suggest bias by military observers than you have a
11 shred of evidence to suggest, in some way, distortion
12 by interpreters, do you? You don't have a shred of
13 evidence of either?
14 A. I think I've said earlier that I -- there is
15 evidence, for instance, in Colonel Stewart's book, his
16 understanding of the background of the conflict as
17 opposed to his description of events. I think the
18 result is simplistic and in that sense biased, but I'm
19 not impugning His Honour. It seems to me it is
20 possible to be patriotic and not necessarily agree with
21 the government policy.
22 Q. I'm going to press you once more because of
23 what you've said in your report.
24 A. Yes.
25 Q. You don't have a shred of evidence to suggest
1 bias by the observers in what they reported any more
2 than you have a shred of evidence to suggest the effect
3 or affect by the interpreters, do you?
4 A. There is the implication that in certain of
5 his statements to the press after the event, Colonel
6 Stewart says that he's not sure who's done it, then he
7 becomes sure. But since, I'm glad to say, none of
8 these participants are -- have been accused of
9 anything, then my opinion about their -- how they form
10 their opinions may be less than relevant.
11 Q. Finally, before I turn to the next topic, is
12 this the high point of your case, because an officer
13 who was contemporaneously investigating events may have
14 changed from uncertainty to certainty as his
15 investigation unfolded? That's the high point of your
16 case, is it, on bias?
17 A. There is a great deal of evidence of, as I
18 said, about how the forces went to Bosnia-Herzegovina
19 were briefed, what sort of information they would be
20 given, including by a subsequent member of the
21 government in Pale. That created an atmosphere of
22 bias. There was then the problem that it was quite
23 clear that the British government did not wish to see
24 any kind of active military intervention and was very
25 critical of anybody who proposed this.
1 In a small army like the British army, it
2 would be evident to anybody what the political masters,
3 who were, of course, the elected government, wished and
4 did not wish to be promoted as a policy.
5 Q. I'm not going to deal with that any further,
6 thank you. What was the HZ HB, please?
7 A. The -- the -- of Herceg-Bosna.
8 Q. Sorry, what was it?
9 A. I'm sorry, I'm struggling to find the correct
11 Q. I've got something to read so let me catch
12 up. Take your time.
13 Sorry. You write about the HZ HB so I wonder
14 if you could tell us what it is.
15 A. Sorry, I have suffered a mental blank. Would
16 you draw my attention to the page?
17 Q. Oh yes, of course. You can see it on page
19 A. I was talking about the Croatian Community as
20 I think it's generally translated. These were these
21 institutions that were created at the point I was
23 Q. Well, just let's see what they were, first,
24 and when they were created. Now, you didn't know, when
25 I initially asked you. You couldn't remember. Can we
1 look at page 20, as well keeping our fingers in page
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. You set out at the foot of page 20 an
5 extended quotation from the passage from Dr. --
6 A. Malcolm.
7 Q. Well, it's actually an account of somebody
8 else but it sets out what Dr. Malcolm -- and it then
9 says at the foot of that page, "The Croat counterpart,
10 the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna, was not
11 proclaimed until July 1992 after three months of
12 Serbian military offensive in Bosnia." Malcolm
13 continues, "The Croats of Herzegovina have some reason
14 to be more hard-lined." And you then say in your next
15 paragraph, "Furthermore, even Dr. Malcolm, whom I
16 regard as the best-informed and most eloquent of the
17 proponents of Bosnian statehood admits that after they
18 had been joined," and so on. So that's something that
19 was created in July 1992 and on page 28, you're
20 referring to HZ Herceg-Bosna created on the 18th of
21 November 1991.
22 A. Yes. As I understand it, there were these
23 preliminary Croatian communities in 1991, but that the,
24 if you like, subpolitical entity that linked the Croats
25 within Bosnia-Herzegovina, which is conventionally
1 referred to as Herceg-Bosna which would include the
2 area of discussion that then formed later.
3 Q. I see. So what was the purpose and the
4 function of this earlier body that you describe as a
5 subpolitical entity, please?
6 A. As I understand it, the event -- in these
7 events in November 1991, when the Serbian forces were
8 still besieging Vukovar and so on, as a preparation for
9 a potential conflict in Bosnia-Herzegovina, whose
10 future status was not resolved and Croatian groups
11 organise themselves at a political and at a
12 preparatory, military level.
13 Q. And have you any knowledge of, and have you
14 taken account of meetings in June of 1991 which
15 preceded the creation of these subpolitical entities,
16 what it is, the 16th and 20th of June? Do you know
17 anything about those meetings at all?
18 A. No, but from the dates you give, they follow
19 the Serb union of municipalities.
20 Q. But if these were meetings in Zagreb where
21 different factions of the local HDZ, the Bosnian HDZ
22 were being sounded out by Tudjman, they might be very
23 important, mightn't they? You know nothing about them
24 at all.
25 A. I have seen no documentation on them, no.
1 Q. And this subpolitical entity, if it was an
2 HDZ entity should, of course, have been presided over,
3 for example, Kljuic, shouldn't it?
4 A. It might have been. I don't know necessarily
5 if it should have been.
6 Q. And you can't help the Chamber at all with
7 how it might have come about that Kljuic was kept
8 unaware of the creation of this event?
9 A. I do not know if he was.
10 Q. Well, can we look, please, very briefly, I'm
11 sorry that it's been taken away, but Exhibit 2717 which
12 is a document we know you've reviewed in full. And we
13 can just literally put page 13 on the ELMO, although --
14 no, perhaps better look at the page 12 for its
16 Mr. Almond, this is the same meeting with
17 Tudjman and Kljuic and all sorts of others, and what
18 happens is as you can see on page 12, that Kostroman
19 took the minutes of -- let me make sure I've got this
20 right myself -- took the minutes and went through
22 And then over the page at page 13, this is
23 the minutes of an earlier meeting of something called
24 Herceg-Bosna, and here there are two passages that may
25 be interesting. "Item 2, the Croatian Community of
1 Herceg-Bosna has once again confirmed the will of the
2 entire Croatian people of Herceg-Bosna expressed on 18
3 November 1991 in Grude, taking the historic decision to
4 establish the Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna which
5 serves as a legal basis for the entry of these
6 territories into the Republic of Croatia."
7 Now, what on earth do you make of that,
9 A. That these decision in November of 1991 were
10 based upon the situation that then existed, that is to
11 say, of a conflict between the Serbs and the Croats,
12 large parts of Croatia being occupied, and the lack of
13 clarity about the future status of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
14 And that for many Croats, particularly those who were
15 no doubt supporters of the HDZ, that in the event of
16 the breakup of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that there should be
17 an unification and that seemed to be happening.
18 What is striking is that it doesn't happen
19 afterwards. There isn't, in fact, an annexation or
20 integration, whatever the aspiration is to that.
21 Q. Well let's just, before we part from this,
22 remind you through the Chamber, Karadjordjevo, two
23 meetings with Tudjman and the factions of the HDZ of
24 which you are unaware, and then this meeting shortly
25 after the creation of this subpolitical group where the
1 subpolitical group speaks in terms of serving as a
2 basis for entry into the territories of the Republic of
4 Would you look at item three as well? "The
5 Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna recognises the full
6 legitimacy of Dr. Franjo Tudjman ..." cut a few words,
7 "... to promote the interests of the Croatian
8 community both among international factors and during
9 interparty and interrepublic agreements on the
10 establishment of the final borders of the Republic of
12 You don't, by any chance, think that this
13 reflects an understanding by parties on all sides that
14 partition or annexation, were it to have happened,
15 could be entrusted to Dr. Tudjman?
16 A. The representation of their interests,
17 because as you slightly omitted, he's a leader of the
18 political party, Dr. Tudjman as with Milosevic, as head
19 of state of one country, was, of course, repeatedly
20 invited to negotiations and ultimately acted as the
21 representative at Dayton so that in the -- in this
22 particular context, this anticipates a role that was
23 later to become explicit in relation to the
24 International Community, and it refers to interparty
25 and interrepublic agreements.
1 Q. Just so I understand it, you not having
2 looked at this in detail before, but your, as it were,
3 off-the-cuff explanation is that we should not now
4 interpret this because Dr. Tudjman is head of the party
5 not because he's head of state; is that it?
6 A. He's head of Croatia but, of course, there
7 was a political party as was the case with several
8 other instances which cut across boundaries. The HDZ
9 was not unique in this factor and I think the
10 construction that you are putting on it or the
11 prosecution is putting a construction that this
12 necessarily implies a partition of Bosnia-Herzegovina
13 against the will of its inhabitants as opposed to an
14 argument that if Bosnia-Herzegovina is not going to
15 survive, primarily as a result of the Serb actions, was
16 it not normal and reasonable that Croatians,
17 particularly those who belong to the same political
18 party, looked to Tudjman as their leader and
20 And as I say, in a variety of international
21 mediation efforts and at Dayton, Tudjman was treated in
22 that way as Milosevic was treated as the representative
23 of Serbs; not always.
24 Q. And you have no further explanation to give
25 as between what was created in November 1991 and what
1 was created in July 1992. You have no further
2 knowledge beyond what you've already given us?
3 A. Nothing that would further my argument --
4 alter my argument.
5 Q. And so on the same page, you will have
6 noticed -- just draw it to your attention and the
7 Judges through you, "Item 4, President Boban and
8 vice-presidents Rajic and Kordic and secretary
9 Kostroman authorised to represent, with full
10 legitimacy, a Croatian Community of Herceg-Bosna at the
11 meeting in Zagreb on the 27th of December."
12 What do you say to all that? Does that help
13 you with understanding what you're dealing with here?
14 A. They are authorised by that meeting to be --
15 sorry, that they are authorised to be the
17 Q. In Zagreb. Very well, I'm going to move on
18 because I want to know the answer to the next
20 Now, you said this morning in answer to a
21 question by His Honour, Judge Robinson, I think, that
22 the fighting was produced by contingent events after
23 the war broke out. When did the war break out on your
25 A. War between the Bosnian Serbs and the
1 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
2 Q. No, I think --
3 A. Do you mean the war between --
4 Q. In relation to the fighting between the
5 Croats and the Muslims. I may be wrong. I've tried
6 to --
7 A. My point was that the -- in the lead up and
8 the intensification of bad relations from the winter of
9 1992 to the events which are the subject of this trial
10 primary, the growing pressure of refugees and also
11 Bosnian army units to have been displaced produced
12 these tensions which then led to conflicts including --
13 where the context of the particular events.
14 Q. These are the contingent events, are they,
15 refugees, matters of that sort and displaced army
17 A. Competition for space, for lodging, for food,
18 for supply lines. The fears of what had happened.
19 Q. None of this excludes the necessity for there
20 being a mind behind a controlling mind or minds behind
21 the military actions that took place, does it?
22 A. There were minds behind the military actions
23 on both sides. It's clear why they took the decisions
24 they did. I, myself, find it difficult to take the
25 view of -- that this conflict was carefully planned
1 over -- by this time, approximately two years, because
2 of the surrounding events, and the surrounding
3 geopolitical strategic position of the Croats and also
4 of the Bosnian Muslims. It is really to the advantage
5 of neither to have this conflict.
6 Q. So it may have turned out, but your -- you've
7 got to go back in time. You can't help us, one way or
8 another, with whether it was planned, how long it was
9 planned, by whom it was planned, by whom it was
10 executed, can you, on either side?
11 A. There are better witnesses, including the
12 active participants than me, quite obviously.
13 Q. But more than that, just to finish with this
14 point, as someone whose expertise, as you have told us,
15 is only concerned with the external assessment by
16 Europeans and others of events, of course, you can't
17 help us with what actually happened inside, can you?
18 A. My primary focus was on the external events
19 and the intervention of the International Community,
20 but of course one would have to try as best one could
21 to follow the events and they were extremely confusing
22 and I think remain still unclarified. That is the
23 point, surely, of this trial.
24 Q. You don't suggest that you have any
25 expertise, just to be quite sure, you don't suggest you
1 have any expertise to unravel that list of things I
2 suggested to you, whether it was planned, when, by
3 whom, and who executed it. You don't have any
4 expertise in that area at all, do you?
5 A. I have nothing to offer, no.
6 Q. Thank you.
7 Would you please -- if you've still got that
8 document if the usher would be good enough, turn it to
9 page 10. On page 10, I'm sorry. Your Honour, would
10 you give me one moment?
11 My mistake. Will you just give me one
12 moment, please. Can we go to page 60 of this report.
13 I'm sorry if I was in error.
14 A. May I keep page 10?
15 Q. Yes.
16 JUDGE ROBINSON: Mr. Nice, the Chamber is
17 becoming concerned at the length of the
18 cross-examination. We believe you have gone on
19 sufficiently long and you should bring it to an end.
20 MR. NICE: I was bringing it to a close in
21 any event. This is either my last or penultimate
23 A. May I just draw the attention of The Bench to
24 the paragraph -- the second paragraph of Mate Boban's
25 intervention which I think supports the tenure of my
1 interpretation, but I don't want to drag out the
3 JUDGE MAY: Since you've made the point,
4 let's see where it is.
5 A. He says, half way through that paragraph, as
6 reported, "Should Bosnia-Herzegovina remain an
7 independent state without any ties with the former
8 disintegrating or future -- or should Bosnia itself
10 JUDGE MAY: Hold on. Can we go up on the
11 ELMO. There we are. Yes.
12 A. "The area where about 650.000 Croats live
13 would implement internationally recognised democratic
14 methods proclaiming this to be independent Croatian
16 MR. NICE:
17 Q. And then the next sentence as well, or next
19 A. "Which will exceed the state of Croatia but
20 only at such time as the Croatian leadership, in whom
21 our people until now have placed their complete trust
22 should decide the moment and the time had come."
23 But in this presumably private meeting, there
24 is a reference to democratic methods and
1 Q. Now go to page 60.
2 Here we have President Tudjman addressing
3 Kljuic, and I'm going to go straight to the first --
4 the next complete, very short paragraph. He says this:
5 "Therefore, we finally wanted, and it was no
6 accident, that in the preamble to the Croatian
7 constitution we also mention the banovina of Croatia."
8 And if, with that passage in mind, you'd turn
9 to page 10 of your report. In the middle of the page
10 you set this out:
11 "The August '39 agreement between the leading
12 Croat politician Madzek [phoen] and the Serbian prime
13 minister, which effectively conceded a large part of
14 Bosnia to a new Croatian unit within a reformed
15 Yugoslavia has a special significance because the
16 boundaries delineated then played such a role in the
17 thinking behind the Vance-Owen Plan and debates about
18 it in the spring of 1993."
19 The banovina was critically important as Lord
20 Owen said, and it's quoted in Dr. Donia's report, had
21 crucial significance so far as Tudjman was concerned
22 and other Croats, because that's what they were aiming
23 for. Would you accept that?
24 A. As I mentioned earlier in my oral evidence, I
25 believe that a large number of Croats regarded that
1 settlement, which was a constitutional deal, not the
2 product of force, as being, from the point of view of
3 their nation, an ideal solution. I don't think that to
4 say that Tudjman or other Croats necessarily wished to
5 revert to that model implies the conspiracy, the
6 collusion, the persistent, as it were, cooperation with
7 the Serbs.
8 MR. NICE: Your Honour, I do have, since this
9 morning --
10 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone for the counsel,
11 please. Microphone for the counsel.
12 MR. NICE: I do have since this morning a
13 draft translation of the Kiseljak documents to which I
14 referred and of course which have only come into our
15 possession recently. I'm pretty well neutral as to
16 whether I put them to this witness, although I've asked
17 him about them, or whether I put them to another
18 witness or introduce them in rebuttal.
19 JUDGE MAY: I think the matter has been taken
20 far enough for today. You can deal with it at a future
22 Yes. Any re-examination?
23 MR. BROWNING: Yes, Mr. President.
24 Re-examined by Mr. Browning:
25 Q. Mr. Almond, let me first of all start where
1 the Prosecution left off, with Prosecution Exhibit
2 2717A, which you should have in front of you. Let's
3 put this in its appropriate historical context. That
4 document is dated December 27th, or refers to a meeting
5 of December 27th, 1991.
6 A. Yes.
7 Q. And the referendum for independence in
8 Bosnia-Herzegovina would have been February 29th and
9 March 1, 1992?
10 A. It took place later, yes.
11 Q. So this document, this meeting, was roughly
12 three months before the fate of Bosnia-Herzegovina had
13 been determined?
14 A. Yes. And the pace of events, of course,
15 meant that those periods seemed no doubt like a
16 lifetime to many people.
17 Q. At the time of this meeting, what would
18 happen with regard to Bosnia-Herzegovina was very much
19 up in the air, both within the country as well as in
20 the eyes of the International Community?
21 A. Yes. The United States, for instance, had
22 not followed the majority of European Community states
23 in recognising either Slovenia or Croatia at this
24 stage, and therefore the acceptance of
25 Bosnia-Herzegovina into the International Community as
1 a normally recognised sovereign state was, I believe,
2 far from clear-cut.
3 Q. After the referendum of March 1, 1992, was
4 there any indication that President Tudjman and
5 President Milosevic ever met to discuss a possible
6 partition of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
7 A. I don't know of any meeting to discuss that.
8 Of course, they met frequently, relatively frequently,
9 under the auspices of various international mediation
10 efforts. They may also have spoken on the telephone,
11 as did other leaders.
12 Q. There was certainly no indication of a
13 discussion concerning partition after the referendum?
14 A. No. And as I emphasise in my report, the
15 criticism of Tudjman made at home was that he was
16 failing to resist or to reverse the occupation of
17 Croatian territory, let alone the Serbs in Bosnia.
18 Q. Prior to the referendum of February 29th and
19 March 1, 1992, was it certain that Bosnia-Herzegovina
20 would opt for independence?
21 A. It was not certain, no, and nor necessarily
22 was it welcome to the International Community.
23 Q. Have you seen any indication that President
24 Tudjman at any point ever advocated the use of force to
25 partition Bosnia-Herzegovina?
1 A. No. The evidence of actions is that
2 eventually he used force to prevent the overrunning of
3 the Bosnian Muslim side and also Bosnian Croats in the
4 summer of 1995.
5 Q. It was put to you that Karadjordjevo involved
6 discussions about what would happen to the state of
7 Bosnia-Herzegovina. At the time of Karadjordjevo, of
8 the meeting in Karadjordjevo, was Bosnia-Herzegovina a
9 state, as put to you by the Prosecution?
10 A. It was a constituent republic of the Yugoslav
11 Socialist Federal Republic.
12 Q. And in terms of whether it would become an
13 independent state, that was very much an open question
14 at the time of Karadjordjevo?
15 A. It was an open question, and also both
16 European Community political leaders and the United
17 States vigorously discouraged the independence of any
18 of these republics, or the seeking of independence.
19 Q. With respect to Karadjordjevo, shortly after
20 Karadjordjevo, in August of 1991, there was a
21 full-scale attack by Serbia upon the Republic of
22 Croatia, was there not?
23 A. Starting even before then, yes, in July.
24 Q. And what does that -- what should one take
25 from that with respect to whether there was an
1 agreement that had been reached at Karadjordjevo?
2 A. It would be a most peculiar deal whereby
3 Croatia did not gain any territory in Bosnia but lost
4 about 30 per cent of its own territory.
5 Q. You've been shown a map from a banquet at the
6 meeting between Paddy Ashdown and President Tudjman.
7 Did that -- were the words of President Tudjman, his
8 description that this is what Bosnia-Herzegovina might
9 look like in ten years, was that what was reported or
10 made available in the press?
11 A. President Tudjman, to the best of my
12 knowledge, his comments, to the best of my knowledge,
13 whatever they may have been, have only been reported
14 indirectly through the recollection of Paddy Ashdown.
15 The map itself is interesting, because of course the
16 writing on it is obviously, however accurate,
17 subsequent. But if you look at the map itself, it, for
18 instance, leaves no space for the Krajina Serb military
19 forces, and I think therefore my suggestion that
20 President Tudjman presumably, as commander-in-chief of
21 the Croatian army at that time, was anticipating what
22 we know was to happen within a few weeks -- within a
23 few days, I should say, in Slovenia, western Slovenia,
24 and then in the Krajina, a military operation against
25 the Serbs, which culminated in the assistance to the
1 army of Bosnia-Herzegovina against the Bosnian Serbs in
2 August and afterwards of 1995.
3 Q. Croatia was the first country to recognise
4 the independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina?
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. And after that step of recognising the
7 independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina, was there any
8 effort made by Croatia in any way to annex a portion of
10 A. There was no annexation of territory, even
11 when the powerless military position of the Bosnian
12 government forces would have made it very easy.
13 Q. I want to wrap up very quickly, but I do want
14 to ask you about another Prosecution Exhibit that you
15 were shown, Z92.1, which was -- and I think it's
16 referred to as an alleged agreement of May 7th, 1992.
17 Shortly after that meeting, did Serbs attack Bosnian
18 Croats in Mostar?
19 A. Yes. I think this agreement was like, sadly,
20 even those agreements mediated by the International
21 Community, a dead letter, and indeed that's why I could
22 not imagine that there was any cooperation very
23 frequently. Not least, the Bosnian Serbs agreed to
24 agree to make -- score points in the media, score
25 points with public opinion.
1 Q. And you refer to it as an agreement, but do
2 you have any reason to believe it's anything more than
3 an alleged agreement?
4 A. It's certainly not an agreement that had any
6 Q. You were subjected to an extensive amount of
7 questions during cross-examination and shown several
8 pieces of paper, but have any of your opinions changed
9 as a result of any of the material that you were shown
10 here in Court today?
11 A. No. I still -- the evidence seems to me to
12 reinforce the point that in this tragic situation, as
13 Yugoslavia broke up and the Serb government and forces
14 pursued their own goals by military force, that various
15 options were open to discussion, but nothing that I
16 would regard as criminal or conspiratorial was ever
18 MR. BROWNING: Thank you, Mr. Almond. I have
19 no further questions.
20 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Almond, that concludes your
21 evidence. Thank you for coming to the International
22 Tribunal to give it. You are free to go.
23 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
24 [The witness withdrew]
25 JUDGE MAY: Have you the next witness?
1 MR. SAYERS: Yes, Your Honour. Dr. Stjepan
2 Mestrovic is available. He's an expert witness
3 addressing the sociological opinions produced by the
4 Prosecution. And with the Court's permission, as I've
5 stated, Mr. Browning will lead his evidence too.
6 JUDGE MAY: Very well. We'll sit till 4.15
7 and see if we can finish his examination-in-chief.
8 MR. NICE: Your Honour -- oh, he's coming
9 in. I was just going to raise a couple of timetable
10 matters. I can do them at the end of the day.
11 JUDGE MAY: Let the witness in.
12 [The witness entered court]
13 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness take the
15 THE WITNESS: I solemnly declare that I will
16 speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
18 WITNESS: STJEPAN MESTROVIC
19 JUDGE MAY: Let the witness take a seat.
20 THE WITNESS: Pardon me?
21 JUDGE MAY: Take a seat.
22 THE WITNESS: Yes, thank you.
23 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Browning, can you speak into
24 the microphone more? I have trouble hearing you, but I
25 understand that others are.
1 MR. BROWNING: Your Honour, I will do my best
2 to speak up, and I'll do my best to pause as well.
3 I've been sufficiently warned by co-counsel.
4 Examined by Mr. Browning:
5 Q. Dr. Mestrovic, could I have you state your
6 full name, please?
7 A. Stjepan Gabriel Mestrovic.
8 Q. And I don't want to dwell on your experience
9 and background, but there are a few points that I would
10 like to highlight briefly. You have three degrees from
11 Harvard University?
12 A. Yes, and one of them is a master's in
13 theological studies which dealt with the world's
14 religions and their import and their meaning.
15 Q. And you also have a Ph.D. from Syracuse?
16 A. In sociology, yes.
17 Q. And you are a series editor on eastern
19 A. Yes. It's a series on eastern Europe at
20 Texas A & M University Press. At the time we
21 established it in 1992, it was one of only a handful of
22 such series. The other major one was Duke University
23 Press and we published over 15 treatises on communist
24 and post-communist developments in eastern Europe
25 ranging from Poland, Hungary, the Ukraine, and so on.
1 Q. And you're a full-write scholar?
2 A. Yes. I was one of the first full-write
3 scholars in newly established Croatia in 1992.
4 Q. How many books have you published?
5 A. A total of 14 books that I published or
6 edited, and of these I believe about four or five have
7 to do in some way with the Balkans or this current war.
8 Q. You've also published a number of prestigious
10 A. Yes.
11 Q. Could you give us a flavour for those
13 A. In "The Chronicle of Higher Education," I
14 talked about why eastern Europe's upheavals caught
15 people off guard when communism began to collapse. In
16 "The International Journal of Law and Psychiatry," I
17 discussed issues of the dangerousness standard.
18 Q. And you have --
19 JUDGE BENNOUNA: Mr. Browning, I think you
20 have to change the place of your microphone, because if
21 you manage to -- no. Like Mr. Nice, you know. It has
22 to be just in front of you, otherwise you cannot --
23 otherwise we don't hear you very well. That's better.
24 MR. BROWNING: Thank you very much.
25 JUDGE BENNOUNA: Thank you.
1 MR. BROWNING:
2 Q. Dr. Mestrovic, you have appeared on CNN as
3 well as national public radio. I'd like for you to
4 describe those appearances, but first of all could you
5 explain what national public radio is?
6 A. It is a prestigious non-profit national radio
7 network in the United States, something in the order of
8 the prestige of the BBC, and I've discussed on it my
9 books, ranging from "Habits of the Balkan Heart" to --
10 there was one appearance about the significance of the
11 death of Milovan Djilas.
12 Q. What is your place of birth?
13 A. Zagreb.
14 Q. And you currently live in the United States?
15 A. Yes.
16 Q. With citizenship in the United States?
17 A. Yes. I'm a United States citizen.
18 Q. When did you move from Zagreb?
19 A. In 1963, when I was 8 years old, I moved to
20 the United States.
21 Q. The report that you have prepared and filed
22 in this matter, is that report a full and accurate
23 summary of your opinions and conclusions in this
25 A. Yes.
1 Q. And you actually prepared that report
2 yourself, did you not?
3 A. Yes.
4 Q. Could you explain to the Trial Chamber the
5 concept of ethnic distance as a sociological term?
6 A. It is a concept that was invented in the
7 1920s at the University of Chicago Department of
8 Sociology and it has been used in research all over the
9 world since then. And basically it measures the degree
10 to which ordinary people feel close or distant to
11 people of other ethnic groups and is measured by
12 questions asked them: Well, would you want the person
13 of a different ethnic group as your neighbour or as a
14 friend or someone to marry, and other questions of that
15 sort. So it's a very good indicator of tolerance or
17 Q. And can you explain specifically how that is
18 measured? I take it it's some sort of survey that is
19 conducted to measure ethnic distance.
20 A. Yes. It's a quantitative scale and it is
21 administered and carefully designed random samples so
22 that social scientists are able to make valid and
23 accurate generalisations from it, and it is used in
24 conjunction with other variables in quantitative
1 Q. And can you explain how ethnic distance
2 changed in Croatia and in Bosnia-Herzegovina prior to
3 the civil war in Bosnia-Herzegovina?
4 A. I cannot explain it in terms of
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina, but certainly Croatia. There was
6 research conducted using the ethnic distance scale in
7 Croatia in 1984, and then repeated throughout
8 Yugoslavia, including Bosnia-Herzegovina, in 1989. So
9 a point of comparison is only for Croatia in terms of
10 the two time periods, 1984 and 1989.
11 What that aspect of the research shows, and
12 it's been published by various collaborators who were
13 in this consortium, and they include Dusko Sekulic,
14 Mladen Lazic, and Vjeran Katunaric, among others, but
15 what it shows is that ethnic distance did rise in
16 Croatia between those two time points, 1984 and 1989,
17 and the significance of that, I think, is that it arose
18 prior to the rise of Franjo Tudjman to power, political
19 power, and it arose during the communist era.
20 Q. And is that empirical data something that you
21 would expect a sociologist to look to and to turn to
22 and to rely upon in evaluating the conflict in the
23 former Yugoslavia?
24 A. Yes, because I think first of all it speaks
25 directly to the issues that are before this Tribunal.
1 Second, the research that has been published by Dusko
2 Sekulic was published in the three most prestigious
3 journals in the United States in sociology -- namely,
4 the American Journal of Sociology in 1994, the American
5 Sociological Review in 1994, and Social Forces in 1999
6 -- which the fact that these are highly prestigious
7 journals, the fact they went through a peer review
8 process, the fact that we can be certain that they
9 would not have been published unless they had gone
10 through rigorous examinations, does lend a great amount
11 of validity to their findings.
12 Q. And what does this empirical data show you,
13 as a sociologist, about the rise of nationalism in
15 A. Well, contrary to the assertions made by
16 Dr. Allcock in his expert report, who claimed that
17 there was a process which he calls ethnogenesis, by
18 which he means that Franjo Tudjman somehow
19 single-handedly engineered or produced ethnic tension
20 in Croatia, what the data suggests is that prior to
21 Franjo Tudjman even being on the scene, the sense of
22 ethnic distance arose of its own accord, from the
23 bottom up, and whatever factors led to it certainly
24 they were not and cannot be attributed to Franjo
1 Q. Prior to agreeing to serve as an expert
2 witness in this case, had you had any knowledge or
3 interaction with Dr. Allcock?
4 A. No, I had not heard of him before this.
5 Q. Can you summarise for the Trial Chamber the
6 differences between the conclusions that you reached
7 and those of Dr. Allcock?
8 A. Well, Dr. Allcock does not cite the studies
9 that I've cited, which are empirical. He does not cite
10 very many studies at all. So his report really
11 contains many assertions that are unsubstantiated. So
12 the major difference between us is that he asserts but
13 does not substantiate the claim that Franjo Tudjman
14 engaged in what he calls ethnogenesis, whereas I seek
15 to suggest, using empirical data, that whatever may
16 have occurred in the former Yugoslavia, it had to do
17 with social structures and social forces that came from
18 the bottom up and were independent of Franjo Tudjman.
19 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] I should
20 like to ask the witness. He said "from the bottom
21 up." What does he mean by saying social forces which
22 came from the bottom up? Historically speaking, could
23 you tell us what does he take as his point of
24 departure? When is it that this ethnic opposition
25 began to emerge? Could he give us any dates? Because
1 there must be a certain historical period to which one
2 could -- with which one could associate this ethnic
3 opposition that you believe to be independent from
4 Mr. Tudjman.
5 A. Yes, Your Honour, there will be several
6 dimensions to these social structures. One is a
7 history in which the various ethnic communities lived
8 together physically, socially in worlds apart,
9 segregated in the worlds unto themselves. There was a
10 certain amount of tolerance but there was not
11 understanding, there was not compassion. So one
12 structural factor is a state in which you have ethnic
13 groups living side by side but not interpenetrating
14 each other.
15 Another structural factor would be, and this
16 is brought out correctly by Dr. Allcock in some of his
17 other writings, namely that the communist regime
18 simultaneously promoted ethnic divisions at the same
19 time that it tried to obliterate them. So in the name
20 of brotherhood and unity, one was supposed to think of
21 oneself as a Yugoslav and not as a Croat or Serb or
22 Bosnian Muslim. At the same time they allowed,
23 condoned, and even promoted such ethnic divisions.
24 So these ethnic divisions were present in the
25 consciousness of the people. And third, what I mean by
1 "bottom up", is that in every day interaction, despite
2 the repression of the Tito regime, people noticed, as
3 this research showed, people noticed that in Croatia,
4 for example, the Serbs were getting the most
5 prestigious and largest apartments. They noticed that
6 the Serbs in Croatia were being promoted in the rank of
7 general, and in the JNA, and Croats tended not to be.
8 People noticed that the size of apartments, jobs, other
9 factors among themselves; talking, gossiping, this was
11 So despite the official party line of
12 brotherhood and unity, there were perceptions, and I
13 think this research shows that when you asked ordinary
14 people what they thought and what they felt, these
15 perceptions came through regardless of the official
16 propaganda line from the capital of Yugoslavia. So I
17 hope that answers your question.
18 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Not quite.
19 That question was not whether there was social, and I
20 think the difference is we know that they did, but
21 whether new nationalism which emerged with the end of
22 the cold war and this new nationalism and nationalism,
23 the nationalism Croat or rather the renaissance of this
24 nationalism, did it rely on this ethnic differentiation
25 and then imposed itself and tried to impose a new
1 state. Because this is the thesis which was profounded
2 here, that it was -- this nationalism was the factor
3 which reactivated because it was reactivated because it
4 was dormant and, in a way, incited or promoted in other
5 ways in order to then be used politically and to be
6 imposed politically in a different state structure.
7 What do you think about that?
8 A. Your Honour, I think that the data shows and
9 not just in the former Yugoslavia, but in general, that
10 nationalism wrecked or helped to tear down communism.
11 Communism did not fall apart from its own accord.
12 The nationalism arose partly sociologically
13 speaking because the nations that had communism did not
14 have a tradition such as we have in the west of the
15 reformation of the Bill of Rights, of other traditions
16 that promote human rights and individual rights.
17 They were much more traditional societies
18 that, for the most part, did not undergo these
19 developments. Therefore, structurally speaking, as
20 people began to notice inconsistencies, hypocrisies and
21 exploitation in communism, the only fall back position
22 that they had, given that they did not have these
23 western traditions, was nationalism.
24 Furthermore, at the same time that this was
25 occurring, the west was undergoing a sort of chaotic
1 state of its own. It was caught off guard by the
2 developments. The west wanted to preserve, in 1991,
3 the integrity of the Soviet Union out of its own fears
4 of nuclear weapons and so forth, and the west did not
5 know what to offer these new emerging republics.
6 So a vacuum was created in which formerly
7 communist nations were looking to the west that was not
8 prepared to give them guidance and nationalism was, so
9 to speak, the logical alternative. But my point is
10 that this nationalism arose from a bottom up as a way
11 to fill this vacuum precisely because there was no top
12 down or centre guidance not only within these nations
13 but also in the west which was reacting in a very
14 confused timid manner.
15 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.
16 Could one then say, sir, that you associate yourself
17 with a doctrine or a sociological school of thought
18 which is called structuralism; do you associate with
20 A. Yes. I have used it. In that sense, I
21 belong to it. I certainly have used other sociological
22 theories as well but it's fair to characterise me as a
23 structuralist, functionalist, yes.
24 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] And this
25 doctrine, does it attach less importance to the
1 individual's will and leaders and much more to the
2 social structure; is that so?
3 A. Yes, it is. In fact, this theory tends to
4 say that so-called leaders are produced by the group on
5 the spur of the moment as opposed to a doctrine that
6 says that the leader is the one that is producing
7 changes in the social group.
8 JUDGE BENNOUNA: [Interpretation] Thank you.
9 MR. BROWNING:
10 Q. Dr. Mestrovic, is it, if I could ask you to
11 turn to the conclusions of Dr. Donia, and if you could
12 summarise the opinions and conclusions that you reach
13 that differ from those of Dr. Donia.
14 A. Well, Dr. Donia's central assertion seems to
15 be that Bosnia-Herzegovina was a peaceful and
16 multi-ethnic nation for centuries, many centuries, and
17 again, prior to the rise of Franjo Tudjman. Moreover,
18 he asserts that there was no violence that could be
19 attributed to ethnic differences in the history of
20 Bosnia-Herzegovina. And what I point out in my report
21 goes contrary to Dr. Donia, is that even in his
22 writings, which are not used in his report, he does
23 cite ethnic violence in the history of
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina. Moreover, other historians and
25 experts on this region point to a history replete with
1 insurrections and with ethnic conflict.
2 So contrary to Dr. Donia's assertions, I
3 would claim that the history of Bosnia-Herzegovina is
4 one of recurrent ethnic tensions and wars and
5 insurrections, and in this way I differ very sharply
6 with his conclusions.
7 Q. Now, Dr. Donia is a historian and you are a
8 sociologist. Why is it that you address the opinions
9 and conclusions of a historian?
10 A. Well, in his -- I believe it's page four of
11 his book with Dr. Fine, he says that he's not doing
12 conventional history in the sense of offering a
13 chronology or analysing events; that he's making
14 generalisations, generalisations that are not
15 characteristic of historians. So in that sense, he is
16 entering the domain or the purview of sociologists, and
17 I take him up to the extent that he enters the
18 sociological domain.
19 For example, I note in my report that in his
20 report he condenses a lot of history, contemporary
21 history, in 1991, 1992, in just a few pages, when the
22 chronology as I use in the Carnegie Commission and
23 draws out some of those events, things that happened,
24 that really would have been more appropriate for a
1 So to answer your question, it is because I
2 think he deviates from conventional history.
3 Q. Forgive me for oversimplifying, but I believe
4 your report also addresses the way the world is viewed
5 or the events are viewed by the culture in the United
6 States and western Europe versus the way the world is
7 viewed within the Balkans. Could you elaborate upon
8 that concept, please?
9 A. Yes. Sociologists are very sensitive to
10 perceptions and particularly how western perceptions
11 sometimes impinge upon or obscure how non-western
12 cultures see themselves or see the world. And one of
13 the things that I would note as a sociologist is that
14 in the Prosecutor's pre-trial brief, as well as in the
15 expert testimonies of Dr. Allcock and Dr. Donia, there
16 is a constant reliance upon the theme of planning,
17 coordination, being systematic, and things of that sort
18 that really bespeak a certain rational mindset that is
19 taken for granted in the west but that is less likely
20 or is more problematic in non-western cultures. So I
21 accentuate a source of cultural bias in approaching
22 this problem.
23 Q. Dr. Mestrovic, if I could ask you to very
24 briefly summarise the conclusions that you've come to
25 based upon sociological principles and the empirical
1 data that you've relied upon as set out in your
3 A. Yes. I rely upon empirical research
4 conducted by Dusko Sekulic, Mladen Lazic, Vjeran
5 Katunaric, and others from this consortium to which I
6 referred to earlier, which suggests that ethnic
7 distance rose in Croatia between 1984 and 1989 from the
8 bottom up, if you will, certainly prior to the rise of
9 Franjo Tudjman.
10 I cite sources that are not cited by
11 Dr. Donia, including some of his own writings, which
12 suggest there was plenty of ethnic conflict in
13 Bosnia-Herzegovina. And I bring up research again by
14 Sekulic which suggests that intolerance and violence
15 are not necessarily related, that the most intolerant
16 republics in the former Yugoslavia were Kosovo and
17 Slovenia, which escaped, at that time, anyway, most of
18 the violence, but the most tolerant republic was
19 Bosnia-Herzegovina, which was plunged into the most
20 brutal violence. So that one has to carefully examine
21 the situation concepts, which seem to be taken for
22 granted and not substantiated by the expert witnesses
23 for the Prosecution.
24 MR. BROWNING: Thank you, Dr. Mestrovic. I
25 have no further questions.
1 MR. MIKULICIC: [Interpretation] We have no
3 MR. NICE: Your Honour, I would prefer to
4 start tomorrow, but I'm entirely in the Court's hands.
5 JUDGE MAY: Perhaps you can make a start to
6 save some time tomorrow, Mr. Nice.
7 MR. NICE: Yes. I'm not sure whether there
8 are any witnesses tomorrow, but in any event.
9 Cross-examined by Mr. Nice:
10 Q. Dr. Mestrovic, what is the significance for
11 the findings of a court looking at the actions of
12 individuals in 1993 of the findings that you say you
14 A. The significance is that your expert
15 witnesses have not proved that these individuals could
16 have engineered the so-called ethnogenesis which is
17 attributed to them in the light of generally accepted
18 sociological principles.
19 Q. Well, what people prove is ultimately a
20 matter for the Judges. Are you saying that by reason
21 of these cultural differences and by reason of the
22 bottom-up potential for nationalism and so on to arise,
23 these individuals aren't capable of planning, aren't
24 capable of organising? Is that what you're saying?
25 A. No.
1 Q. Well, explain then how, to recast your
2 answer, these sociological or cultural differences are
3 likely to impede the process and proof of planning,
5 A. Well, I'm responding to the arguments made by
6 your expert witnesses, and I'm saying that the way they
7 set forth the argument that Franjo Tudjman could have
8 engineered this ethnogenesis is not substantiated by
9 research that shows that the ethnic distance had arose
10 prior to his being on the scene.
11 Q. We'll explore tomorrow, in more detail, what
12 the particular propositions that we are advancing or
13 that the witnesses are advancing are. I come back to
14 the first question.
15 What you offer in your report doesn't, in any
16 sense, render it impossible for people to have planned
17 the things as part of the Prosecution's case said were
19 A. Impossible, no.
20 Q. Are you saying that by reason of cultural
21 differences, in some way it's less likely for people
22 like Tudjman to plan something because he's culturally
23 incapable of doing it?
24 A. Not quite in that way, because you're talking
25 about him as an individual. What I am saying is that
1 the culture in the entire former Yugoslavia would make
2 the level of systemisation, coordination, planning, and
3 so forth which you an attribute to any of the actors
4 more problematic.
5 Q. Well, then, I think I'd like some more help
6 on that, because it's all my ignorance of your
7 particular area, but there's a difficulty -- you're
8 really asserting that as one crosses from Austria into
9 the former Yugoslavia, or from one bit of the former
10 Yugoslavia into another, we are passing from a
11 population that can easily plan wars and deceptions and
12 so on into a population that is less able to do that?
13 A. No, Mr. Nice. What I'm claiming is that
14 there are standard books in sociology, such as Zygmunt
15 Bauman's "Modernity and the Holocaust" which claim, for
16 example, that the German people could and did engage in
17 widespread and systematic genocide because they had
18 already had a cultural proclivity and a structure that
19 was suited towards bureaucracy, efficiency,
20 rationalisation, coordination.
21 And we do know, for example, that the
22 Holocaust continued as a very systematic
23 pace regardless of other events that were occurring
24 around them. And that when one goes further to the
25 east, yes, of course there will be mass killings, there
1 will be planning, there will be actions taken, but they
2 will not be able to take on that same degree of
3 coordination, planning, and efficiency, or it will be
4 more difficult for them to achieve that.
5 Q. To take a quite specific point, then, are you
6 saying that for a political leader, it would be more
7 difficult for a political leader, say, to be devious in
8 Bosnia to the extent of doing one thing in public and
9 another thing in private?
10 A. I have to say that sociology has nothing to
11 say on being devious, so I cannot answer that.
12 Q. And we've mercifully not had to deal in
13 detail with the organisation of camps and so on in this
14 particular case. This is not a matter in issue. Are
15 you saying that really the camps would be less capable
16 or less liable to be well organised in this territory
17 than they could be well organised as places of
18 punishment or of execution in Germany?
19 A. Mr. Nice, I always want to rely on empirical
20 evidence. The only one book in English is called "The
21 Tenth Circle of Hell," by Hakunovic, in which he
22 experienced at Omarska. And Eli Wiesel, in the preface
23 to this book, says that despite the horrors that
24 occurred in Omarska, Omarska was not Auschwitz. And
25 the descriptions in this book, "The Tenth Circle of
1 Hell," do suggest that the way the brutalities were
2 carried on by the Serbs were not in the same style of
3 efficiency and coordination which you describe.
4 For example, the descriptions by the
5 survivors suggest that the Serbs got drunk at night,
6 they would drink a lot of slivovitz, they would
7 randomly pick certain inmates who they would beat that
8 night. But there was not a rational systematic quota
9 of how many deaths would occur night after night.
10 So all I'm saying is when one goes by the
11 empirical evidence that's out there -- and I submit to
12 you "The Tenth Circle of Hell," it's a very important
13 document for giving us insight into the how the Serbs
14 actually conducted one of these camps -- it does
15 suggest differences, cultural differences, in how
16 murder is carried out.
17 Q. I think we can all understand how, for
18 example, any culture with alcohol consumption,
19 particularly if it's permitted to operate in this
20 environment, might play havoc on efficiency. But if we
21 omit alcohol and we are dealing with people of
22 intelligence, is there any reason why those people
23 shouldn't be able to plan and organise events much the
24 same way as soldiers or politician in other countries?
25 A. Well, Mr. Nice, the very fact that such huge
1 amounts of alcohol were encouraged and allowed bespeaks
2 a difference culturally in that intemperance is allowed
3 in these camps among the guards and the inmates.
4 Q. I'm sorry. My mistake. Let's move from the
5 camps, because we've dealt with that, and come back to
6 the circumstances of the individual politician and the
7 individual military leader. If there's no evidence
8 that one or other of those is subject to alcohol
9 excess, is there any cultural reason why either one of
10 such hypothetical figures is going to be less capable
11 of organising, planning, executing plans than people in
12 Britain or America?
13 A. Mr. Nice, the individual leader will not be
14 biologically nor innately different from any other
15 leader in the world. What will be different are the
16 cultural and structural resources available to that
17 leader. That is what a sociologist will immediately
18 point out.
19 Q. Now, you say that, I think, there's a
20 suggestion from somewhere on the Prosecution side -- it
21 may be from me, I don't know, one of our witnesses, or
22 from Mr. Allcock. You say that we are suggesting that
23 ethnic tension was deliberately engineered by the late
24 President Tudjman. Where do you find that?
25 A. It is in the section in which Dr. Allcock
1 introduces the concept of ethnogenesis and then later
2 on links it to the actions in his report of Franjo
4 Q. Have you got his report with you so that we
5 can see that? Have you got his report there?
6 A. No.
7 MR. NICE: May he have a copy, if you've got
9 MR. SAYERS: Mr. President, all we have is a
10 marked-up version, but we're more than happy to show it
11 to --
12 JUDGE MAY: Yes. Let the witness have that.
13 THE WITNESS: Am I supposed to answer at this
15 MR. NICE: Yes. If you'd just take me to the
16 passage so that I can see it.
17 A. Well, on page 2, top paragraph:
18 "Ethnic cleansing is not a spontaneous
19 manifestation of the grass roots traditions of ethnic
20 communities as much as an instrument of policy. In the
21 present, as in the past, inter-ethnic hostility and
22 ethnic cleansing have been top-down manipulative
23 features of the policies of political leaders in
24 relation to the building of states rather than
25 bottom-up expressions of sentiment on the part of
1 peoples of the region."
2 And then towards the bottom of that same
3 page: "President Tudjman is explicitly linked as
4 having appeared to have created structures --"
5 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness either
6 slow down or have the document on the ELMO, please?
7 A. "-- those formerly associated with the
8 former federal President Tito, namely, top down and
9 very controlling." And the rest of the report really
10 follows along those lines.
11 MR. NICE:
12 Q. What's being dealt with at the top of the
13 page, unless I've misunderstood it myself, which is
14 always possible, is that we're dealing with
15 inter-ethnic hostility and ethnic cleansing, aren't
16 we? Those are actions. Isn't that what we're dealing
18 A. Well, hostility does not necessarily have to
19 be an action. It can certainly be an attitude.
20 Q. It could be, but in the context of this
22 A. I'm not prepared to agree with you on that.
23 Q. I see. And of course, for things like ethnic
24 cleansing, things that people do one to another, you do
25 need someone to make the decision, don't you? You're
1 not suggesting, are you, that there was a spontaneous,
2 bottom-up, self-arising exercise of ethnic cleansing
3 going on in any part of this breakup?
4 A. Correct.
5 Q. It was all, where it happened, led by a
6 political or a military leader, or both?
7 A. In addition to other mitigating factors.
8 Q. So that if -- I note your disagreement for
9 the time being and I'll deal with it more fully perhaps
10 tomorrow. But if hostility could more easily be
11 understood -- I don't say there's anything wrong with
12 the way it's written -- be more easily understood by
13 inter-ethnic hostilities, in the plural, denoting acts
14 of aggression leading indeed to warfare, and there's
15 nothing in this paragraph of Dr. Allcock's report that
16 says that Tudjman is generating, expressly and
17 exclusively, ethnic tension and unhappiness, is there?
18 A. Not in this paragraph, but in my report I
19 certainly find passages, when put together, it's very
20 clear that Dr. Allcock is blaming the top, the top
21 being for him Franjo Tudjman, for ethnogenesis. I
22 think this is a very clear point.
23 MR. NICE: I'm not in a position to accept
24 that, so we're going to have to disagree on that
1 JUDGE MAY: Is that a convenient moment?
2 MR. NICE: Yes, Your Honour. I've got one
3 minute of administration as well.
4 JUDGE MAY: Very well.
5 Dr. Mestrovic, we've got to adjourn now.
6 Could you be back, please, tomorrow at half past 9.00.
7 THE WITNESS: Yes.
8 JUDGE MAY: And I must warn you, as I must
9 warn all witnesses, not to speak to anybody about your
10 evidence until it's over, and that includes members of
11 the Defence team.
12 THE WITNESS: Yes.
13 JUDGE MAY: If you'd like to go now, please,
14 and be back at half past 9.00.
15 THE WITNESS: Thank you.
16 [The witness withdrew]
17 [Trial Chamber confers]
18 MR. NICE: Just a couple of matters of
19 information, really, and to some degree one request.
20 The information is that in relation to Dr. Pavlovic,
21 you'll remember that he's coming along to deal with
22 certain medical issues, and we were asked last week if
23 we could accommodate him today. I made every effort
24 over the weekend and was able to write to Mr. Sayers
25 saying that I couldn't make it today, but I would be
1 able, I think, with luck, to deal with him tomorrow.
2 In the event -- I certainly am in a position to deal
3 with him tomorrow, but I understand now that he won't
4 be coming in till Wednesday, so that can we deal with
5 him then? But it would be inconvenient for it to be
6 beyond Wednesday, because the efforts that I've made to
7 advance my position are such that Wednesday would be
8 about the latest, I think.
9 JUDGE MAY: Mr. Sayers.
10 MR. SAYERS: Very simply, Mr. President, we
11 were led to believe by the Prosecution that they would
12 not be through with even Dr. -- with even Mr. Almond
13 before tomorrow, so it's true that Dr. Pavlovic we had
14 anticipated bringing on Wednesday morning. He doesn't
15 have a cell phone, but we'll try to get him available,
16 I assume, by tomorrow afternoon, if the Prosecution is
17 through by then, if we can get hold of him, and we'll
18 make every effort to do so.
19 MR. NICE: I'm grateful for that.
20 JUDGE MAY: Is he here?
21 MR. SAYERS: Yes, Your Honour. I think he
22 arrived on Saturday.
23 JUDGE MAY: Thank you.
24 MR. NICE: The second thing relates to next
25 Monday, when the audiotape expert for the Defence is to
1 be called. Although I'm not sure about it, I think the
2 Dutch expert will be available to assist on that day.
3 He had two other commitments, one another court hearing
4 which he forecast might very well get cancelled. I
5 haven't yet heard that it has. And second, a travel
6 arrangement to a conference which he was prepared to
7 put off in order to assist this Tribunal.
8 I've informed Mr. Sayers of that, at least
9 I've informed him that he's going to be available, and
10 I had asked Mr. Sayers to consider whether, in the
11 circumstances, the possibility of calling both
12 witnesses next Monday, if the Court case is cancelled
13 and if he is available, is something that they could
14 accommodate. Of course, I understand that they have
15 got other witnesses already scheduled and so on, but if
16 I find out this afternoon that the man is available on
17 Monday, I'd like at least consideration to be given to
18 that, because it would be a tidier and more efficient
19 use of time.
20 JUDGE MAY: Yes. We'll make the inquiries
21 and then consider the timetable for next week.
22 MR. SAYERS: With respect to that particular
23 issue, Your Honour, I may be mistaken about this, but I
24 thought we had already addressed this, and the
25 resolution was that in view of the 21-day rule and the
1 fact that Mr. Koenig is going to be testifying well
2 within the 21-day rule, that July the 24th was reserved
3 as the day upon which the Rijswijk laboratory witnesses
4 would testify, and we've made our plans accordingly.
5 In fact, I think that was what the Court suggested over
6 a week ago.
7 JUDGE MAY: I don't recollect that at the
8 moment. We can look into it. And in any event, we can
9 consider it later in the week when we know what the
10 position is.
11 Are there any other matters? Half past 9.00
12 tomorrow, please.
13 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned
14 at 4.19 p.m., to be reconvened on
15 Tuesday, the 27th day of June, 2000,
16 at 9.30 a.m.