1 Wednesday, 24 November 2004
2 [Open session]
3 --- Upon commencing at 9.05 a.m.
4 [The accused entered court]
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Registrar, will you call the case, please.
6 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case number
7 IT-03-68-T, the Prosecutor versus Naser Oric.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you.
9 Mr. Oric, can you follow the proceedings in a language that you
11 THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Your Honours, honourable gentlemen,
12 good morning. Yes, I can follow the proceedings.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you. You may sit down.
14 Appearances for the Prosecution.
15 MR. WUBBEN: Good morning, Your Honours, and good morning to the
16 Defence team. My name is Jan Wubben, lead counsel for the Prosecution,
17 together with co-counsel, Ms. Patricia Sellers, and our case manager,
18 Ms. Donnica Henry-Frijlink.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I thank you, Mr. Wubben. And good morning to
20 you and your team.
21 Appearances for Naser Oric.
22 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Good morning, Your Honours. Good
23 morning to my learned colleagues from the OTP. My name is Vasvija
24 Vidovic, and together with Mr. John Jones, I represent the defence for
25 Mr. Naser Oric. We have our legal assistant here, Ms. Jasmina Cosic, and
1 our case manager, Mr. Geoff Roberts.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: I thank you, Madam Vidovic, and good morning to you
3 and your team.
4 Any preliminaries? No?
5 Yesterday we finished on a note arising in the wake of some
6 comments that were made by Ms. Sellers. I couldn't exactly understand
7 whether it was an objection or not. But anyway, I consider the matter
8 raised by Ms. Sellers as extremely relevant, and I don't think I need
9 to -- I would be offending you if I did. I don't think I need to explain
10 what the purpose, what the nature of cross-examination are.
11 What concerns me and what worries me, and this happens in every
12 case, not just in this case, is that there is a temptation sometimes, and
13 a strong temptation, which I have a feeling that Defence lawyers, in
14 particular, are very happy to succumb to, of taking advantage of the
15 presence of a witness here to expose, in as bad a light as possible, the
16 other side, so to say, not the Prosecution but the other ethnic group. If
17 it is a Serbian that is -- if it is a Serb that is being accused, then the
18 tendency is to forget that he is the accused and the cannons are turned on
19 the other ethnic groups.
20 It is natural, I mean, it's something that is to be expected,
21 because, after all, we're talking of a conflict that took place and its
22 events are relatively still recent, and sometimes there is some validity
23 also in the fact -- in the facts that are attached to the other side
24 involved in the conflict.
25 However, Ms. Vidovic, in particular, I should like to remind you
1 that who is accused in this trial is not Slobodan Milosevic, it's not
2 Karadzic, it's not the government of Republika Srpska, it's not the
3 government of Serbia or Montenegro. Certainly not, it's not the Serbian
4 people. Certainly not, it's not the Serbian people. Who is accused in
5 this trial is your client. So I do understand you trying to bring out
6 some of the events particular to the conflict and that occurred before,
7 and sometimes even after the conflict, because I do understand that
8 sometimes some events are definitely relevant. But on the other hand, I
9 mean, what is more relevant is the events that are particularly the
10 substance of the indictment and of which -- and which form the basis of
11 the charges that your client has to answer.
12 So I don't know, this is in addition, over and above what
13 Ms. Sellers pointed out yesterday. For example, I mean, I don't know, but
14 the purpose of cross-examination is to bring out, in perspective in
15 particular, anything that you contest to the witness. I mean, your client
16 is a military officer, high-ranking military officer. I mean, I haven't
17 heard any questions on, for example, the command structure -- as far as
18 the command structure -- on the Serbian side, yes, I have heard. But I
19 haven't heard anything on the military structure on the Muslim side, for
21 I'm mentioning these because we've discussed a little bit amongst
22 ourselves, and we are a little bit concerned that so far, we have been
23 having sort of a cross-examination at a tangent. Rather than a direct
24 cross-examination to the core issues, we have a cross-examination to try
25 and bring out whatever is bad, in your view, in the conflict and which
1 could be attributed to the other side. In actual fact, it's not the other
2 side that's being tried here in this trial. It may be tried in other
3 trials, but not in this trial.
4 So I appeal to you to go straight to the core issues and limit
5 your cross-examination to what a cross-examination ought to be.
6 With that, I think we can admit the witness and we can proceed.
7 Yes, Mr. Jones.
8 MR. JONES: Your Honour, I mean, I wonder if we might at least
9 respond to the points raised by Ms. Sellers and the points raised by
10 Your Honours, because indeed Rule 90(H)(i) goes beyond the parameters what
11 Your Honour has said. I leave that to my colleague.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
13 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, I will first try to
14 briefly respond to what Ms. Patricia Sellers said, and then I will also
15 try to explain -- to give an explanation in relation to your comments
17 Yesterday in her objection, the Prosecutor said that we presented
18 evidence that in no way opposed the thesis put forth by Mr. Gow, and that
19 the Defence should use Mr. Gow to cross-examine him in relation to the
20 facts that the Defence disagrees with.
21 Your Honour, I refer your attention to Rule 90(H)(i) that we all
22 know, that the restriction in a cross-examination and the credibility of
23 the witness examined, but it does allow the questioning side, in this case
24 the Defence, that the witness who can give favourable statements for the
25 Defence should, therefore, ask these questions. And this is the case
2 Chapter 3, the military and political context of this case
3 contained in his report, clearly indicates the relevancy of our case that
4 I made clear in my cross-examination yesterday. The Rules are -- do not
5 provide for a situation where the questioning -- the cross-examining side
6 should be obliged to put only those questions that relate to the matters
7 that the questioning side disagrees with.
8 Quite the contrary. As is the case with Dr. Gow, quite the
9 contrary. In the case of Dr. Gow, I am here referring to the requests by
10 the Prosecutor to admit Dr. Gow's report in accordance with Rule 94 bis of
11 13 September 2004. We were willing to cross-examine him, not to criticise
12 his qualifications, competence, or relevance of any part of his report.
13 Quite the contrary. We insisted on having him here as a witness because
14 we intended to examine this witness, who knows facts that are very
15 relevant to our case, in order for him to explain the entire context of
16 the conflict and the background of the conflict. This is, in our
17 submission, of 2nd October 2004.
18 With all due respect, I think that my cross-examination of
19 yesterday was fully in compliance with this rule.
20 Ms. Sellers also pointed out the issue of facts in dispute. We
21 are very careful in examining what we are going to stipulate to and what
22 we are not going to stipulate to in the interests of our client. As for
23 the background of the case, we accepted 26 out of 30 facts that the
24 Prosecutor delivered to us in a letter dated 30 September, that was
25 enclosed with the Prosecution's pre-trial brief.
1 The facts under 5, 6, and 7 contained in that letter relate to the
2 remainder of the cadre of the JNA in Bosnia-Herzegovina and its
3 preparation for the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina, as well as to the
4 functioning of the Territorial Defence under the control of the
5 authorities of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that is to say, under the control of
6 the Muslims.
7 Yesterday the Prosecutor, on page 97, lines 11 to 15, asked that
8 we stipulate to the fact that, after the breakup of Yugoslavia, the
9 remainder of the JNA officers started preparing the defence of
10 Bosnia-Herzegovina. We asked no such thing of Dr. Gow yesterday. We do
11 not think that it's true, in fact, and that is our case.
12 As for item 30 that was offered to us and that was raised again
13 yesterday by Ms. Sellers, the fact that was proposed to be stipulated to,
14 that was on the page of the transcript number 97, lines 18 to 20, that the
15 JNA had provided the key military, financial and logistics assistance to
16 the VRS forces. As for that, we wanted to have Dr. Gow's explanation as
17 to what it was all about. His explanation given on page 80 of the
18 transcript, line 25, and page 81 and line 1, is drastically different to
19 the position of the Prosecutor as contained in their offer for
21 I will also briefly turn to what Your Honour has said. I would
22 kindly ask you to understand that the existence of an international
23 conflict for our case, for the case of our client, is not of essential
24 importance. It is crucially important for us to determine the presence of
25 the military forces on the ground, meaning on the ground in those
1 municipalities that are mentioned together with the allegations against
2 our client, regardless of whether these are Yugoslav, Montenegrin, or
3 local Serb units. It is very relevant for us to establish and prove that
4 there was a presence of very strong military units on the ground, of heavy
5 weaponry, aircraft, military structures, all those elements that would
6 come under the military necessity. And that is the reason why my
7 examination of Dr. Gow was a very detailed one.
8 The issues of the command structure within the army of
9 Bosnia-Herzegovina, specifically when it comes to our client, are of a
10 very peculiar nature. You will have occasion to see during the case that
11 there was almost no such structure there at all.
12 Secondly, Dr. Gow said at one point yesterday that because the
13 structure was cut off, he was not dealing with the structure as such at
14 all, because the issue of the structure of the army of Bosnia-Herzegovina
15 is a peculiar issue, an issue that is actually aside from all the events
16 that took place in Srebrenica. And I appeal to you to allow us to try and
17 present the situation to the Chamber as it was, in fact, in Srebrenica,
18 from the military perspective, everything that my client is charged with,
19 and, of course, to present the situation as the fact that it was trying to
20 wear out the refugees, allow them to starve, and all the other issues that
21 definitely are relevant to our case.
22 I apologise for having taken up quite a lot of your time, but
23 these are the reasons why my questions were as they were yesterday.
24 As for the facts to be stipulated, we have analysed carefully the
25 proposal, the submissions put forth by the Prosecutor yesterday, and our
1 position remains unchanged. Thank you, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I think we have heard enough on this matter.
3 Usher, could you please admit the witness. Thank you.
4 MS. SELLERS: Your Honour, might I just ask for the record, prior
5 to the witness coming in that we would like to respond to the Defence and
6 your concerns. We certainly accept any decision that you take. We do
7 renew -- they're looking at the stipulations, and under Rule 90(H)(ii), we
8 don't believe that they are confronting the witness with contradiction --
9 JUDGE AGIUS: That's fine. I don't think I have been read well.
10 The idea of having a cross-examination is to advance your position, and I
11 hope the point is taken.
12 [The witness entered court]
13 JUDGE AGIUS: And sometimes I was even taught in my very first
14 case as a lawyer in my country, that sometimes it's wiser to sit down and
15 not even put a single question to a witness in cross-examination.
16 Dr. Gow, good morning. My apologies to you for having kept you
17 waiting for 25 minutes in that room, or perhaps even more. But we
18 threshed the matter that we started discussing in your presence yesterday.
19 Again, I'm just reminding you that you are testifying on the basis
20 of a solemn declaration that you took two days ago.
21 WITNESS: ANDREW JAMES WILLIAM GOW [Resumed]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: So, Madam Vidovic.
23 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] I kindly ask the usher to show
24 Dr. Gow a document by the Ministry of Defence. This is D55.
25 Cross-examined by Ms. Vidovic [Continued]:
1 Q. [Interpretation] Dr. Gow, would you please look at this document.
2 This is a document by the Ministry of Defence, sent to the governments of
3 the autonomous regions and the SAO, delivers the decision by the Serbian
4 Assembly, adopted on the 15th of March, 1992. Could you please look at
5 Article 1 of the decision, which reads:
6 "The Territorial Defence --"
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Excuse me, Madam Vidovic, could we have it on the
8 ELMO, please.
9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. "The Territorial Defence of the Serbian Republic of
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina is hereby established as an armed force of the Serbian
12 Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Territorial Defence -- the following
13 will be in command and control of the Territorial Defence: Municipal
14 district and regional staffs, and the republican staff of SBiHTO. The
15 decision on other components of the armed forces will be adopted, pursuant
16 to an agreement on the political setup of Bosnia-Herzegovina and the
17 status of JNA. All the military conscripts shall place themselves at the
18 disposal of the Serbian TO in the territory of Serbian
20 Mr. Gow, have your studies shown that the Territorial Defence 4,
21 since its establishment, formed a component part of the army and was not a
22 structure functioning outside the army of Republika Srpska?
23 A. It was initially seen as a separate institution/organisation, but
24 it was clear, which is also in line, I guess, with the old Yugoslav
25 defence doctrine that it was intended at the time of operations to be
1 integrated as a whole. It was the basis, or one of the bases, for forming
2 what became the VRS. This document seems to be making clear the idea that
3 the Territorial Defence will be subjugated and part of the army that is
5 Q. Thank you. Could you please look at the Defence Exhibit D56 in
6 relation to this.
7 A. Could I point out, I didn't get the original version of that
9 Q. I will quote:
10 "The units so far and the staffs of the Territorial Defence --"
11 this is a decision by the Assembly of the Serbian People on the
12 establishment of the army of the Serbian Republic of 12 May 1992.
13 "The units and staffs of the Territorial Defence, as they were so
14 far, are transformed into commands and army units whose organisation and
15 establishment will be determined by the president of the republic."
16 Dr. Gow, is it not true that units and staffs of the Territorial
17 Defence were merely renamed into commands and units of the army of
18 Republika Srpska?
19 A. Sorry, that they were merely renamed?
20 Q. [In English] Yes.
21 A. That's what this law says, yes, that of the army.
22 Q. [Interpretation] Yes. And would it then be correct that all the
23 armed forces were involved, all the Serb armed forces were involved in the
24 army of Republika Srpska?
25 A. I'm not entirely clear what you mean by "all Serb armed forces,"
1 because it wasn't necessarily the case, for example, that paramilitary
2 forces were involved in it, although they were clearly working with it on
3 an operational basis. Technically, sometimes they were seen as
4 independent. Sometimes, technically, they were formerly -- there was a
5 law in Belgrade in December 1991 that nobody ever really noticed that
6 subjugated them to the Belgrade authorities and it meant that they could
7 be incorporated within the JNA as well. I've never seen such a law, but I
8 half suspect that there was one applying to the VRS as well, which would
9 say they would be subjugated to. But I don't think it makes a difference.
10 I think in the end, what is clear, that is, that all of these Serbian
11 forces were subject to the same ultimate authority within the same
12 ultimate programme of activity.
13 Q. It is a fact that the TO, since the establishment of the army of
14 Republika Srpska, was indeed part of the army of Republika Srpska.
15 A. [Previous interpretation continues] ... the answer to the previous
16 question as well, but yes.
17 Q. Very well, thank you. Can I have the usher's assistance now. I
18 would like to place the following document on the ELMO. It is a document
19 of the Bratunac Brigade. The title is "To All Units," signed by the
20 Commander Svetozar Andric. This document is an excerpt from the financial
21 records of the Bratunac Brigade in relation to August 1992. I will quote
22 from this document now.
23 "By a telegramme dated the 13th of September, 26/9/43, dated the
24 13th of September, 1992, from the Main Staff of the army of Republika
25 Srpska, we have been informed on the exact amounts for the salaries for
1 the month of August."
2 And then there is a list that follows, if you can please have a
3 look, the specific amounts in relation to specific categories of officers
4 and privates. I would like to ask you the following: Has your research
5 perhaps shown that members of the army of Republika Srpska were, in fact,
6 paid? Did it receive financial compensation for their participation in
7 the armed struggle? And were there any records that were being kept of
8 these payments, if any?
9 A. My research indicates that a lot of the time people were not being
10 paid, although they were supposed to be paid; that officers were being
11 paid from a budget from the Federal Ministry of Defence in Belgrade. I
12 can say this document seems to confirm what the pay rates would be at that
13 particular time for members of the VRS. I don't know if -- if you're
14 asking me to confirm what the document says or to talk about wider issues,
15 but I think I've done both a little bit.
16 Q. Fair enough. Thank you. Yesterday you said at one point that
17 General Ratko Mladic was appointed as the new commander of the Main Staff.
18 Therefore, Dr. Gow, can you please have a look at the following document,
19 prior to which I would like to have this previous document assigned a
20 number as a Defence exhibit, the document that we just used.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. The next number is?
22 THE REGISTRAR: Your Honour, that will be Defence Exhibit D74.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: So this document is being tendered and admitted in
24 evidence and marked as Defence Exhibit D74. Thank you.
25 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
1 Q. This document was signed by General Ratko Mladic. The title is
2 "Directive of the Main Staff of the Army of Republika Srpska for the Month
3 of August 1992."
4 Can you please look at page 3, Dr. Gow. The title is "Operational
5 Objectives." If you can please look at paragraph 4, the last sentence
6 orders as follows:
7 "Crush Ustasha forces in the Birac area."
8 And on page 5, item 5.3, the East Bosnia Corps, the main East
9 Bosnia Corps. I'm talking about page 5, item 5.3?
10 A. Okay. It goes on to page 5.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: For the record, the two references Madam Vidovic has
12 made, on the English -- in the English text, the reference is on -- the
13 first reference is on page 01905851. It's under the section headed
14 "Operations Objectives," fourth bulleted paragraph, three lines from the
15 bottom of that paragraph, "crush Ustasha forces in the areas of Birac."
16 The second reference is on page 5, on page 5 of the English text,
17 with ERN number 01905853, and it's the third -- towards the top of the
18 page. The paragraph is numbered 5.3 and starts with the words "Eastern
19 Bosnia Corps." That's just for the record. You can, I suppose, follow
20 from that.
21 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honour. I might point out that I've
22 now put the original reference, the one with "crush Ustasha" on here. I
23 shall put the other in a moment. But can I point out that there appears
24 to be an extraneous page with a completely different number in the middle
25 here, which I think is what created a problem when if it -- when the
1 issue's put on. If I can give this page to somebody to see where else it
2 might belong. So we have page 3, for the record, in the English
3 translation, which makes reference to "crush Ustasha forces in the area of
4 Birac, Visegrad, Gorazde, Trnovo, and Foca." And I'll place the second
5 quotation now. Can somebody remind me which point it was? It was page 5,
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Page 5, paragraph 5.3, at the top of the page.
8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 Q. 5.3, "the East Bosnia Corps, the main forces in cooperation with
10 the 1st Krajina Corps, free from the Ustasha forces, the areas of
11 Majevica, Semberija, and Birac."
12 Dr. Gow, you confirmed yesterday that Birac is an area including
13 the municipalities of Bratunac, Srebrenica, Zvornik, and Vlasenica. Is it
14 not correct, Dr. Gow, that since August 1991, there had been orders to
15 crush the forces in the Birac area, to crush the Muslim forces
16 specifically in the Birac area?
17 A. This document indicates to crush Ustasha forces in that area,
18 which is a little curious, because you would usually assume Ustasha to
19 refer to Croatian forces rather than to Muslim forces. So it's not clear
20 to me what is being said here. As far as I'm aware, there were no
21 Croatian forces that area. If the term "Ustasha" is being used to refer
22 to Muslim forces, then it would seem to indicate that this document is
23 giving an order to crush those forces in that area. To me, it's a little
24 bit of a curiosity as to why that language should be used, but it also
25 little makes difference to me in the sense that there was no doubt that
1 Serbian forces were attempting to overwhelm and eradicate non-Serbian
2 forces of whatever kind, but we assume usually Bosnian government military
3 forces in that area at that time.
4 Q. Non-Serb forces, therefore.
5 A. Yes.
6 Q. We could say that. Dr. Gow, I would like to show you another
7 document now, D33, Defence Exhibit D33.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you tendering this previous document in
9 evidence, Ms. Vidovic?
10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Yes, indeed, Your Honour.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: So this document is being tendered and admitted in
12 evidence and marked as Defence Exhibit D75.
13 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
14 Q. Dr. Gow, this is another directive of the Main Staff of the army
15 of Republika Srpska. This is a directive of the Main Staff of Republika
16 Srpska, dated the 3rd of August, 1992. It's a logistics directive for
17 providing logistics support, operations number 3. Can you look at page 5,
18 item 7? It reads "Quartermaster Security."
19 A. The translation says "Quartermaster Support." If may also say
20 that I hope there's a better original copy than this one for the files and
21 the record.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I agree. It's something that, unfortunately, we
23 have to learn and live with. Some of them are in an awful state.
24 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Unfortunately, Dr. Gow, this is a document that we received, and a
1 very poor copy from the OTP. I can only quote the section of the document
2 which says:
3 "In carrying out the quartermaster support for the units, the main
4 way of obtaining supplies is to rely on the capacities of the logistics
5 supports and use the supplies of civilian bakers, slaughterhouses, farms,
6 cooperatives, commodity reserves belonging to companies, farms and
7 agricultural communities, as well as individual producers."
8 Dr. Gow, does this document not show that the territory controlled
9 by the army of Republika Srpska, to a large extent, was militarised and
10 used, in fact, for military purposes?
11 A. I'm sorry, I'm not clear about the question. Forgive me, I think
12 I was busy trying to read and I missed something. Would you mind
13 repeating it.
14 Q. I will quote again:
15 "In carrying out the support for quartermasters in units used the
16 following capacities: All supplies from the territory --" I'm only
17 reading out the relevant bit, "civilian bakers, slaughterhouses,
18 warehouses belonging to companies, the commodity reserves belonging to
19 companies through agricultural farms, cooperatives, individual companies."
20 The question related to that was: Does this document not indicate
21 that the area controlled by the army of Republika Srpska was, to a high
22 degree, militarised in the sense that even the commodity reserves
23 belonging to farms, individual manufacturers and companies, were being
24 used for military purposes? Is that something that your research, too,
25 has shown?
1 A. I am confused -- sorry, because there's a difference -- there are
2 additional parts in the English translation that I don't seem to see in
3 what I can see of the original, and so I've been confused between those
4 two things.
5 The original would seem to go with what you have said in terms of
6 it was expected that you would look to get military -- to meet military
7 needs in terms of food and so forth by turning to the local community.
8 Unless I'm in the wrong place, there seems to be a reference to federal
9 and republican in the translation. Am I in the wrong place? Which I
10 can't see in the original. And I think that's my confusion, because I
11 think in the first place I was reading this and thinking it was a
12 reference to the relationship with Belgrade. Am I in the right place?
13 Q. No. Dr. Gow, can you please look at the section under 7A, 7A.
14 A. Okay.
15 Q. Under 7A.
16 A. Okay. I've found the place. I'm very sorry.
17 Q. My apologies.
18 A. It confirms that they would use local suppliers for military
19 needs, but I don't think there would be anything enormously surprising in
20 that, and that's why I thought you'd said, see, in the first place, and I
21 was looking at the other part. I was expecting that the issue was just in
22 getting supplies from across the border rather than this. But certainly
23 it indicates that they would be looking to local providers to meet the
24 needs of the military, but it really doesn't seem surprising --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: It's a normality, it's a proposition of requisition,
1 and basically, it's more or else.
2 A. Sorry for the confusion, or my part in it, anyway.
3 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Fair enough. Thank you, Dr. Gow. You do know that the Drina
5 Corps, in November 1992, was, in fact, within the compensation of the army
6 of Republika Srpska, covering the municipalities of Bratunac, Srebrenica,
7 Zvornik, and Vlasenica. I will now proceed to show you a document of the
8 Main Staff of the army of Republika Srpska, dated the 19th of November,
9 1992, signed by General Ratko Mladic. The relevant pages are 3, 6, and 7.
10 In the English, the last sentence on page 2, Dr. Gow, page 3 of
11 the B/C/S original, and the English begins at the bottom of page 2:
12 "Meanwhile, the Drina Corps was formed. Its command and units
13 have been brought up to the highest level of combat readiness and
14 successfully crushing the enemy in Podrinje. The air force and
15 anti-aircraft defence have achieved maximum results in supporting the
16 ground forces, which, according to the number of sorties, has not been
17 recorded anywhere in the world."
18 Therefore, Dr. Gow, this is about Podrinje, which is of relevance
19 to our case. Dr. Gow, has your research shown that the air force was
20 permanently active throughout this area at that period of time, and does
21 this document not seem to confirm that precisely?
22 A. It's certainly the case that there was constant air activity. The
23 document indicates that there was some kind of air support in the area.
24 I'm not sure what else you might want me to say beyond that. But if you
25 tell me anything else you might want, I'd be happy to try and help.
1 Q. Yes. I just want to ask you this: Your research, has it not
2 shown -- or rather, has it shown that the Muslim forces, too, had in fact
3 an air force, or was this air force under consideration here a
4 Serb-controlled air force, receiving support from forces coming from
5 Yugoslavia that were then carrying out bombardments?
6 A. The army of Bosnia-Herzegovina did have a very limited air
7 capability, primarily helicopters. Most of the air activity most of the
8 time through the war was -- did involve helicopters rather than fixed-wing
9 aircraft. That was because the UN Security Council put in place at one
10 stage, a little bit later, what was called a no-fly zone. But it was
11 difficult to enforce the no-fly zone against helicopters. I can say that
12 as far as my recollection and research goes, there was actually fixed-wing
13 air activity at this time, and in this area. But I'm not sure if we can
14 go far beyond that.
15 Q. Therefore, speaking of the Podrinje area, has your research shown
16 that the area was bombed from Belgrade between 1992 and April 1993 which
17 is when the demilitarisation campaign took place?
18 A. I can't confirm that it was bombed by Belgrade, although I think
19 it's likely that the aircraft were a Belgrade-controlled aircraft, i.e.
20 relating to the VJ but I can't confirm that because I simply don't know.
21 I can confirm that in -- I mean, this document is dated November 1992.
22 I'm prepared to accept that there will have been air action at that stage.
23 Certainly in those -- after the turn of the year, in the first part of
24 1993, there was certainly UN monitors reporting air action in this area
25 with fixed-wing aircraft, without necessarily designating whether they
1 were VJ or aircraft from the VRS. But simply that there was fixed-wing
2 aircraft activity by Serbian forces.
3 Q. Thank you very much, Dr. Gow. I would now like to draw your
4 attention to page 6 of the Bosnian version, which is page 5 in English,
5 item -- or subsection D. Subsection D talks about the objectives of the
6 Drina Corps. It reads:
7 "The Drina Corps, from its present positions, its main forces
8 shall persistently defend Visegrad, the dam, Zvornik, and the corridor,
9 while the rest of its forces in the wider Podrinje region shall exhaust
10 the enemy, inflict the heaviest possible losses on them, and force them to
11 leave the Birac, Zepa and Gorazde areas together with the Muslim
12 population. First offer the able-bodied and armed men to surrender, and
13 if they refuse, destroy them."
14 Dr. Gow, do you agree that as early as November 1992, there was a
15 clear-cut plan to eliminate the enclaves of Srebrenica, Cerska and
16 Konjevic Polje, or rather, to crush the entire population of the area?
17 A. I certainly agree that as early as November 1992 there was that
18 intention. I don't know about crushing the Muslim population but
19 certainly to remove it from the territory. And I would go further and say
20 it was from a considerably earlier stage than November 1992.
21 I might take this opportunity. Yesterday the question was raised
22 about paramilitary forces, Arkan's Serbian volunteer guard, the Tigers,
23 going, entering the town of Srebrenica, and the date. I took the liberty
24 last night of checking what the date was because I said I wasn't sure. It
25 was the 18th of April. I think if you can go back to the 18th of April,
1 1992, you can see that there was the intention to do that as well. That
2 this document confirms that that intention was also there in November,
3 I've got no problem accepting that.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I want this clear, Madam Vidovic and Dr. Gow,
5 because Madam Vidovic used the verb "crush" and you have diverted that --
6 from that and restricted yourself, it's seen at least in my opinion, to
7 "remove." The two are not the same.
8 THE WITNESS: Which is why I made the distinction.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. The two are not the same. So, I would
10 like you to be very specific in answering this question, and I would put
11 the question: What do you understand, first of all, by "crush the Muslim
12 population"? How do you understand the question?
13 THE WITNESS: Well, my concern with the word "crush" is that it
14 could have many meanings, one of which --
15 JUDGE AGIUS: This is why I'm putting the question to you.
16 THE WITNESS: It could be to --
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Crush them militarily.
18 THE WITNESS: It could be to crush militarily. But this is a
19 specific reference to civilian population. It could be to roll them over.
20 It could be to remove any sense of spirit and morale. It could be to
21 eliminate. It could simply be to overwhelm and take over. I was making
22 the distinction simply because the translation says, "force them out," and
23 the original says something equivalent to that, which is
24 "napustiti prostore", to be clean, to be moved out of the area. So it
25 was -- that's why I make this distinction. If that satisfies
1 Your Honour.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: So basically --
3 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour --
4 JUDGE AGIUS: -- stick to whatever point in time you would like to
5 fix. What do you agree was the intention of the Serbian authorities
6 vis-a-vis the Muslim civilian population?
7 THE WITNESS: The intention was to create a territory on which
8 there would be no Muslim population. That is absolutely clear.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Vidovic.
10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Thank you. That will be sufficient. Dr. Gow, I will now ask you
12 to look at page 7 of the same document, item 6, the support for combat
13 activities. And there's another issue I'll ask you about it.
14 "A. Intelligence and security support."
15 A. Could you repeat the page again? I missed it.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Seven.
17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Page 7.
19 A. Of the original?
20 Q. In both, both versions. The subheading under A, "intelligence and
21 security support." The second line in the paragraph reads as follows, and
22 I'll quote:
23 "Since the Muslim and HVO forces cannot put up a more organised
24 resistance to larger units, they are forced to resort to guerilla
1 It goes on to say, there's a continuation to that, but I would
2 like to ask you the following, Mr. Gow:
3 Has your study shown that the Muslims in the area waged such a
4 warfare, therefore, guerilla warfare?
5 A. Yes, it has, and that it -- that in the period we've been
6 discussing, this period, late 1992 and early 1993, in military terms it
7 was quite successful. It seemed that in the region as a whole, a degree
8 of control, albeit against significantly weak Serbian forces at that time,
9 but still a significant area was widened under the control of the
10 so-called guerilla forces fighting against the Serbian forces. And of
11 course, I don't think it's a secret that your client, the defendant's
12 name, is widely associated with that campaign.
13 Q. Very well. Were they forced to wage such a warfare due to the
14 significant lack in armaments and resources as compared to the other side?
15 A. They had, if they were going to fight from a weaker position
16 against a stronger opponent, to adopt an asymmetric strategy. I made
17 reference, again, to this I think, on the first day of evidence. We were
18 asked about the old Yugoslav defence system. That was predicated on the
19 idea of falling back in-depth and using a Territorial Defence guerilla
20 strategy as a way of combatting a significantly stronger aggressor. And
21 what was unusual in the context of the war in Yugoslavia was that this was
22 just about the only case in which that strategy, which makes more sense
23 from a weaker position, was actually used. The army of
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina, in the Bosnian theatre, for the rest of the war,
25 seemed to try to fight on equal terms and not to do it very well in that
2 Q. Thank you.
3 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Before I move to my next question,
4 could this document please be assigned a number as an exhibit and be
5 admitted as a Defence exhibit.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: So this document is being tendered and received in
7 evidence and marked as Defence Exhibit D76. If I make a mistake in the
8 sequence, registrar, please draw my attention immediately.
9 Yes, Dr. Gow.
10 THE WITNESS: If I may just add a little bit to that last answer,
11 and connect it with one of the documents we were shown yesterday, the
12 extract from the book on alleged atrocities against ethnic Serbs. That
13 book was produced in relation to the success of the Muslim forces in
14 Eastern Bosnia, and it was widely reported at that time that there had
15 been sometimes described as massacres and killings, and certainly what
16 were described as reprisals. So I think that's the context to understand
17 in the connection between those two pieces of evidence, in case that
18 it's ...
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Dr. Gow.
20 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Dr. Gow, can I ask you a question in relation to that. Have you
22 ever, in your studies, come across a piece of information that Muslims
23 were impaling people? Did you come across any information that can be
24 substantiated or corroborated to that effect, regardless of whether it's
25 in Visegrad or somewhere else? I'm referring to the article that you saw
2 A. Back to the headline about impaling, I'm not aware of any specific
3 example of impaling. But I'm not sure I would necessarily be aware of an
4 example, even if it had taken place. So I don't think that excludes the
5 possibility that there were actions being taken -- I'm not saying whether
6 or not, it's not my place to say whether or not such actions were taking
7 place, but simply that there were reports of activities.
8 Q. Yes. Yes. But you have not come across such an example have you?
9 A. Of the act of impaling, I haven't, no.
10 Q. And --
11 A. -- necessarily --
12 Q. It's clear. Thank you, Dr. Gow. I'll move onto my next question.
13 In your book, the Triumph of the Lack of Will, pages 141 and 142, if you
14 could please be shown these. In these pages you focused on the mass-scale
15 Serb campaign against the small, predominantly Muslim town of Srebrenica
16 in Eastern Bosnia. You explain that the Serb campaign was aimed at
17 getting rid of the Muslims in the valley where there were some 40.000
18 refugees that had fled from other regions. Is that correct?
19 A. There's a paragraph on the page which deals with the circumstances
20 in Srebrenica which gave rise to the UN safe area there, or to the
21 originally agreed Red Cross safe area which then became one of the UN
22 Security Council designated safe areas. I think it's important to
23 understand that it's in the context of what gave rise to safe areas rather
24 than simply about Srebrenica. But that's ...
25 Q. I merely wanted to ask you whether you came across the figure that
1 there were as many refugees in the valley?
2 A. The number of refugees, yes, certainly.
3 Q. Yes.
4 A. And I think yesterday --
5 Q. 40.000 --
6 A. I think somewhere yesterday there was a document that said
7 80.000. I said that I rather thought it was a smaller figure than that.
8 But there were tens of thousands of refugees, I mean, and that's the key
10 Q. Would you agree that sometimes figures referred to the town of
11 Srebrenica only and sometimes they include the enclaves of Cerska,
12 Konjevic Polje, and the surrounding villages and hamlets. Do you agree
13 that sometimes different data presented to this reason, because you were
14 referring to the town of Srebrenica itself, weren't you?
15 A. I was referring to the town of Srebrenica, but I think most of the
16 data that is found and recorded in the UN system also relates to the town
17 of Srebrenica. There was a period when there was a wider area of control,
18 but for most of the time there was a much narrower area of control because
19 of the Serbian disposition, which means that Srebrenica was the focus.
20 And that's where, for the most part, refugees were. We should also point
21 out, I think, that most of the people in Srebrenica by this time were
22 displaced people, were refugees, and that many of the original inhabitants
23 of Srebrenica had left after the original attacks in April 1992.
24 Q. Thank you, Dr. Gow. Furthermore, in your book, you wrote that the
25 destruction campaign started with the intention of eliminating the Muslim
1 communities in Eastern Bosnia. I will quote a small part of it:
2 "Not only was the VRS commander, General Mladic, exerting pressure
3 on Eastern Bosnia through heavy artillery, he was also denying passage to
4 convoys of humanitarian aid of UN, and for these reasons UNPROFOR and the
5 broader international community it represented was faced with demands for
6 action to prevent massacre and starvation in the region."
7 Dr. Gow, my question is as follows: Does this mean that there was
8 an actual risk of starvation and violent death for the people in
9 Srebrenica at this period in time?
10 A. Of course it does, and that was the intention of the Serbian
11 campaign, as I think we've been making clear throughout the whole of this
12 system. It was to remove one way or the other.
13 Q. Thank you, Dr. Gow. I will present you with a document of the War
14 Presidency of the municipality of Srebrenica of 24th of January, 1993.
15 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] But before that, could, please,
16 these two pages from Dr. Gow's book be assigned a number and be admitted
17 into evidence as a Defence exhibit.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: So this document, being an extract from the
19 witness's book, "Triumph of the Lack of Will: International Diplomacy and
20 the Yugoslav War" is being tendered and admitted in evidence, and is being
21 marked as Defence Exhibit D77.
22 THE WITNESS: You Honour, may I?
23 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Dr. Gow would like to add something.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Dr. Gow.
25 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honours, for indulging me once more.
1 Seeing as you're taking these two pages as evidence, I just point out the
2 reference to the third line down on page 142, which is to the reports
3 about the reprisal actions that I mentioned earlier and the reports of
4 summary executions, just to note that that's within the evidence being
5 presented here.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
7 THE WITNESS: And the footnote that goes with it.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: I had already noted that paragraph. Thank you.
9 THE WITNESS: Forgive me for presuming.
10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
11 Q. Dr. Gow, can you please look at the documents of the War
12 Presidency of the municipality of Srebrenica of the 24th of January 1993,
13 number 179/3. The document is entitled "Appeal," and the second paragraph
15 "We are all hungry. More than half of us are sick, and only in
16 the course of yesterday, 14 residents died."
17 The following paragraph starts with the line:
18 "The Srebrenica area is an area where hungry and sick people live,
19 an area of death, and nobody is concerned about saving this particular
20 area of Bosnia-Herzegovina and helping the suffering population."
21 The sixth paragraph goes on to say:
22 "Another danger like the sword of Damocles is over Srebrenica, and
23 that's the VRS stationed at Bajna Basta and the occupied Skelani, both
24 upper and down the Drina river, that is to say, the Uzice Corps."
25 Does this document reflect the actual reality that Srebrenica was
1 faced with, as described by you in your book?
2 A. I just ask to check which document we're dealing with? I can't
3 find --
4 JUDGE AGIUS: I was going to --
5 A. All the things you've said, I'd concur, but they don't seem to
6 relate to the document that is in front of me.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. I've been trying to follow what you've
8 been reading, but I can't find it in the document that I have.
9 A. Can we check the ERN number?
10 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honour, it is possible that
11 there was a mistake. I was referring to the document by the War
12 Presidency of the municipality of Srebrenica, number 179/3, of January 24,
13 1993, entitled "Appeal."
14 THE WITNESS: So ERN 571918, whereas the document we had was a
15 different ERN.
16 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] No, 918.
17 THE WITNESS: Yes. That's the one I have here now.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: What we have, however, is 922, not 918. July -- at
19 the top it says July 15th, 2003, but then the document itself is dated
20 25th of January of 1993. The War Presidency, the reference number is
21 180/93. Let me see. No, it's definitely not the same. No, it's not the
22 same. What we have been given is not the same. We have been given the
23 following, the subsequent document, the War Presidency document 180/93,
24 while we should have document 179/93. So we will return these.
25 MS. SELLERS: Excuse me, Your Honour, excuse me, Madam Vidovic.
1 Could we have a correct copy of the document he's referring to now?
2 JUDGE AGIUS: We don't have one either, Ms. Sellers. We could
3 make photocopies of the document if proper photocopies are not already
5 In the meantime, Ms. Sellers, you can follow from the screen.
6 MS. SELLERS: Certainly, yes.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
8 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
9 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: I suggest, Ms. Vidovic, that you start all over
11 again, that you repeat your question, basically, because now, sort of,
12 we've lost track.
13 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Fine. Very well.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: And the document should be raised on the ELMO so
15 that -- yes, okay, that's fine. Thank you.
16 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Therefore, this is an appeal by the
17 War Presidency of Srebrenica.
18 Q. The second paragraph bolded here reads as follows:
19 "All of us are hungry. More than half of us are sick. Only
20 yesterday 14 inhabitants died."
21 Then the second bolded passage:
22 "The area of Srebrenica is an area of hunger and sickness, of
23 death. Nobody is concerned about saving this part of the Republic of
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina and help the suffering population."
25 Could you please lift the document on the ELMO.
1 "Another danger, like the sword of Damocles, hovers above
2 Srebrenica. It is the army of the so-called Federal Republic of
3 Yugoslavia located in Bajna Basta and in the occupied area of Skelani, as
4 well as upstream and downstream of the Drina river, that is to say, the
5 Uzice Corps."
6 Dr. Gow, does this not reflect the actual situation as it was in
7 Srebrenica, and does it also reflect what you yourself wrote in your book?
8 A. It, indeed, reflects both those things, yes.
9 Q. Thank you.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Please make sure you limit your answer to this
11 specific period of time that we're dealing with.
12 THE WITNESS: It refers to the period of time we're dealing with,
13 January 1993.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: That's perfect. Thank you.
15 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Thank you. Could this document of
16 the War Presidency that we've discussed be assigned a number and be
17 admitted into evidence as an exhibit?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. We still don't have a copy of it. But when we
19 have it, that document will be marked as Defence Exhibit D78. D78.
20 Yes, I take it, Dr. Gow, that you would like to add something.
21 THE WITNESS: Yet again, I'm sorry, and just for clarity if we've
22 finished with this document otherwise, si to note and confirm that Bajna
23 Basta is in Serbia, that the name Skelani refers to a location in
24 Bosnia-Herzegovina, so we're talking about forces from Serbia operating in
25 a part of Bosnia-Herzegovina, across the other side of the Drina, and
1 firing as well from the other side of the Drina into it. And then when it
2 says Uzice Corps, the Uzice Corps is an army of what was designated the
3 VJ, the army of Yugoslavia, and indeed the General Ojdanic, who was later
4 to be the commander in Kosovo and then federal defence, actually, at the
5 time of the operations in Kosovo. Just to provide context for all those
6 things. I'm very sorry. Sorry. General Ojdanic whose name is on the
7 screen here, O-j-d-a-n-i-c - okay - who is referred to here as commander
8 of the Uzice Corps, was later to be commander of the 3rd army over Kosovo,
9 and after that Belgrade defence secretary at the time of the Kosovo
10 operations in 1998/1999 -- or 1999, sorry. That's just to give context.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam Vidovic -- yes, Ms. Sellers?
12 MS. SELLERS: I've been assured that we'll get copies of this
13 exhibit. It's just that we did -- it appears that the Defence, when they
14 did show us some of their Defence exhibits prior, we do have a copy in
15 B/C/S. I'll just note that our copy seems ends with a comma, so I don't
16 know whether there should be two pages to it. We would very much like to
17 know if there's a second page, and as the Defence -- we don't object to
18 its admission at all into evidence. We would like to know who signed or
19 somehow verified the original, and then the copy.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Where is the document? Could you please bring it
21 over? Thank you. So, Ms. Sellers, the original in the Serbian language,
22 Serbian-Croat language, has an ERN number -- it consists of two pages, and
23 ERN number 01857918 to 19. It does have a signature on the second page,
24 but the signature is -- it seems to be affixed to the part of the document
25 which says "received via an amateur radio station in Sarajevo, received by
1 Ilijas Omerovic." But as you see, the B/C/S original consists of two
2 pages, okay?
3 MS. SELLERS: Okay.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: The English translation, instead, consists of one
5 page, consists of one page.
6 MS. SELLERS: Thank you.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: We will need photocopies of these. Thank you.
8 Yes, Madam Vidovic.
9 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
10 Q. At paragraph 28 in your statement of 9th September 2004 that you
11 gave to the OTP, and that was admitted into evidence yesterday, you speak
12 of increased actions in Podrinje in the beginning of 1993. You mentioned
13 thousands of soldiers of Yugoslavia and paramilitary forces crossing the
14 Drina river with more than 100 tanks and APCs. Was this a part of the
15 campaign to destroy the Muslim population in Podrinje?
16 A. It was a part of the Serbian campaign that we've been discussing
17 throughout, to remove the Serbian population -- sorry, to remove the
18 Muslim population and to secure control of those territories by doing so.
19 Q. Would you please look at the document by UNHCR that we will show
20 you. UNHCR update on the former Yugoslavia, dated 12 February 1993.
21 Could you please look at the second paragraph, which reads:
22 "In a letter to the leader of the Bosnian Serbs, Radovan Karadzic
23 and Ms. Ogata," that is to say, the high commissioner for refugees,
24 "said UNHCR had been pressing for weeks for clearance to deliver aid to
25 the enclaves where more than 100.000 people are suffering untold hardship
1 due to the military blockade."
2 These reports that refer to the Muslim enclaves, did they cause
3 concern on the part of the international community, and the intention of
4 the international community?
5 A. They did. Quite clearly they did. This document is one example
6 of it. The mention of the UN-declared safe areas and the Red Cross
7 agreement prior to that safe area, we've already mentioned, are all part
8 of the attention that is being drawn to Eastern Bosnia because of the
9 situation there.
10 Q. Mr. Gow, this report is dated 12 February 1993, therefore a bit
11 before the safe zone was actually established.
12 A. Indeed, it's before that. But I think there was concern and
13 attention even before that. I think you'll find -- you can look at a
14 trail of attention going back to late 1992, and certainly from the
15 beginning of 1993, all part of that attention.
16 Q. Correct. Thank you, Dr. Gow. I have perhaps two or three more
17 questions for you.
18 This concern was, therefore, so extensive that the representatives
19 of the international community who were on the ground cautioned about the
20 possibility that the Serbs would carry out genocide in the area as early
21 as at that time.
22 I will now show you a document and draw your attention to one
23 section to it.
24 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Could Dr. Gow please be shown this
1 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes.
2 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] But before that, could this previous
3 document be assigned a number and admitted as an exhibit?
4 JUDGE AGIUS: So the document, being UNHCR update on
5 ex-Yugoslavia, dated 12th February 1993, is being tendered and received in
6 evidence and marked as Defence Exhibit D79.
7 THE WITNESS: Your Honour?
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Dr. Gow.
9 THE WITNESS: If you'll permit me yet again just to add -- draw to
10 your attention, not presuming that you won't read the whole of the
11 documents anyway. Further down there's also the reference to the UNHCR
12 being denied access to Sastakanica [phoen], with the one exception of
13 opening up a one-way channel. This is all part of the same context of the
14 campaign that the document has evidence relating to it should be noted.
15 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. Thank you. So we have another document now.
16 Do we have it on the ELMO, or not yet?
17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation]
18 Q. Dr. Gow, would you please look at the following section, paragraph
19 11. Paragraph 11:
20 "If free passage with transport cannot be arranged for the
21 refugees in the Srebrenica pocket within the next 7 to 14 days,
22 indications are that the Serbs will carry out a genocidal cleansing of the
23 enclave, resulting in the potential death of up to 80.000 human beings."
24 Dr. Gow, is it true that the campaign of genocidal cleansing of
25 the enclave mentioned in paragraph 11, which was in March 1993, was of
1 great concern to the international community?
2 A. Of course it was of great concern, yes.
3 Q. And this concern was a real one, wasn't it, based on realistic
5 A. I'm not sure what an unreal concern would be. But absolutely, it
6 was a real concern. They were facing the prospect of what -- of how to
7 deal with tens of thousands of human beings, whether they would try to
8 look after them in situ or try to move them in some other way to safety,
9 and what the implications that there would be for moving them to safety,
10 implicitly assisting with the process of ethnic cleansing, or saving
11 lives, which is one of the dilemmas faced by the international effort
12 throughout. But I think the judgement made in the final paragraph, in the
13 final sentence of that paragraph, they are unlikely to stop this offensive
14 until the enclave is cleared one way or another. I think it is probably
15 borne out by the events in 1995, that the intention was always there and
16 it was only a matter of time until the point where it could be executed.
17 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we may two further
18 questions for Dr. Gow. It won't take long. I believe this is a good time
19 for a break, however. And can this document just please be assigned a
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. This document is being tendered and admitted
22 in evidence and being marked as Defence Exhibit D80.
23 Just one question before we rise for the break. I would like
24 confirmation as to the date of this document. I know that if you look at
25 the top right, there is a date, time, 20, 2355A, and then what appears to
1 be March 1993. I want a confirmation of that. Are we talking of March
2 1993, or are we talking of some other year?
3 THE WITNESS: If you wish, Your Honour, I can confirm that this is
4 March 1993.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. I mean, I thought so, but I wanted a
6 confirmation from one of you.
7 THE WITNESS: And if I may add yet again, this irritating witness
8 who's wanting to say more than they probably should, but in paragraph 8 of
9 the previous page, which I've put up on the ELMO, in reference to some of
10 the things I've been saying at other times, the UNPROFOR, that's the UN
11 peace force, report here indicates assistance from Serbia with artillery
12 fire and ground attack, aircraft as well. Just add further little bit of
13 evidence to the things that I've been saying.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. So we'll have a 25-minute break, starting
15 from now. Basically we will resume at 11.00.
16 --- Recess taken at 10.35 a.m.
17 --- On resuming at 11.05 a.m.
18 MS. VIDOVIC: [Interpretation] Your Honours, we would like to thank
19 Dr. Gow, and we have no further questions. We conferred during the break
20 and we decided to ask no further questions. Thank you.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you, Madam Vidovic.
22 MS. SELLERS: Your Honour?
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Is there re-examination, Ms. Sellers?
24 MS. SELLERS: Your Honour, I would like to say that there would be
25 no re-examination. We would like to place on the record that we do feel
1 that the second half of the cross-examination has, in essence, not been a
2 cross-examination under Rule 90, particularly (H)(ii). At this point in
3 time, due to the nature of the entire cross-examination, we would like to
4 renew the request, and we can do that in writing and correspondence, to
5 ask the Defence would stipulate at least to the fact of an armed conflict
6 on the territory, as amended in the new indictment. Thank you, Your
8 JUDGE AGIUS: That is without the internationality character.
9 MS. SELLERS: Your Honour, I believe that the indictment no longer
10 sets forth the internationality but I believe that the Defence has stated
11 earlier said they were not interested in the internationality aspects.
12 So, therefore, we would renew our request just to armed conflict as stated
13 in the general allegations.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. That's up to Defence -- to the Defence to
15 decide upon. So I take it there are no questions from the Prosecution to
16 the witness.
17 Judge Brydensholt would like to put some questions to you,
18 Dr. Gow, please.
19 Questioned by the Court:
20 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: You mentioned the very first day that there
21 was no command structure in 1992, there was no command structure on the
22 Muslim side, as far as I remember. It was more of a top organisation, and
23 you even said that up -- oh, yes, sorry. You even said that up until
24 1995, it was not still really in order, the command structure. Would you
25 elaborate a bit on that? What do you know, if at all, about the Muslim
1 side, and on what basis do you say that they had no real command
2 structure? It was more ad hoc.
3 A. Well, I think -- well, let me be clear when I say -- when I was
4 talking about the degree of formation within the army of
5 Bosnia-Herzegovina and the levels of competence and organisation, I would
6 not wish to suggest that there was no command structure from the outset.
7 At least from the declaration to form the army on the 15th of April, there
8 was a command structure. And within the old Territorial Defence system
9 under the control of the Bosnian authority, or areas under the Muslim
10 control, there was certainly command and control.
11 What I was suggesting in that, in the reference to 1995 was about
12 the character of the army of Bosnia and Hercegovina and its formation. By
13 the end of 1995, in my judgement, and in those -- the judgement perhaps of
14 those with perhaps even greater expertise, predominantly British military
15 professionals who had experience in Bosnia with whom I've discussed these
16 issues, the Bosnian army did not have a strategic-level capability. The
17 joint operations between the Croatian army and the Bosnian army, which
18 took place in the final phases of the war, in 1995, indeed later 1994, the
19 first of them, were ones where the strategic level -- and if you recall at
20 one point I was discussing the different levels. You have policy, grand
21 strategic, strategic, operational, and then tactical levels. That at that
22 level of relating politics to the use of armed force, I think it can be
23 said that even by the end of the armed hostilities in Bosnia, that forming
24 Bosnian army still didn't have the full rounded coherence and competence
25 to operate at a strategic level. That doesn't mean that it didn't have
1 command and control and that it didn't have structures. I was talking
2 about the character of the army and its capacities to act as an army.
3 By the end, it certainly could -- it certainly had an operational
4 capability. At the times where it's apparently sought to act
5 strategically, it usually failed. And even when there was small initial
6 successes, the VRS, under General Mladic, would then be able, after a
7 short time, quite easily to be able to push it back.
8 So when I say about -- I want to get clear that what I -- whatever
9 it was exactly that I said, that I'm talking about command and control in
10 a full sense of a fully functioning and operating armed force. And I
11 think that by 1995 and the end of armed hostilities, the army of
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina still was not an army which fully had that character.
13 It certainly had effective command and control arrangements, if you're
14 talking about the structures within the armed forces, the organisation,
15 and a degree of communication and ordering. And I should say that it even
16 had that going back to 1992. But it was an evolving process. So when the
17 army was initially formed, for example, it was designated as having forces
18 in places like Mostar, and having a corps command relating to Mostar, but
19 there was no force in Mostar de facto. So on one part you had people
20 appointed to positions, but there was no actual role that they were
21 playing in the place and the way they were supposed to be playing it.
22 In the course of 1992, as this Bosnian army was forming on the
23 basis of the Patriotic League and the Territorial Defence forces, things
24 were being changed, coherence was coming together. That's why you've got
25 one declaration in April, you've got further steps in May, you have the
1 formation of --
2 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: Could you tell me what further steps in May?
3 I'm aware --
4 A. Yes. Sorry. Well, I think it was in May there was a further
5 law/declaration on the structure of the armed forces which gave rise to
6 putting in place administrative districts. These were later supplanted by
7 the military districts and corps in the August documents that we saw in
8 evidence. In July, there was the formation of tactical groups. These
9 were groups used by the old JNA for two purposes, either for a specific
10 objective of bringing together different elements of forces otherwise not
11 subordinated to the same command, or for some speculative operations where
12 no formal regular force was in a position to be able to carry it out. And
13 in some sense, as the tactical groups used by the Bosnian army in this
14 period -- it was a part of this evolving character, the ones which were
15 responding to the lack of a fully formed authority while the work, clear
16 command and control arrangements were coming down from the presidency
17 through General Halilovic, as part of this organisation.
18 There were clear areas where there were elements of uncertainty,
19 where people were appointed in roles such as coordinator, not in normally
20 formally recognised military position. But the point there was that they
21 were in an evolving and adapting situation. They were the ones who were
22 able to use either qualifications or personality, experience, whatever it
23 might be, to take part in forming this army.
24 I think we should always be clear that there were structures, that
25 there were command and control structures, but they were not necessarily
1 functioning as a whole and complete armed force throughout -- in this
2 period, certainly through to about November 1992. But that does not mean
3 to say that there was not command and control.
4 I think it also should be understood that forces operating outside
5 those formal structures where the formal structures had not yet been able
6 to take effect, and Eastern Bosnia for some of the time can be one of
7 those, were still operating under a system of command and control that
8 related to the notions of guerilla warfare, to Territorial Defence, and
9 the political-military relations that went with that. And when we come to
10 late 1992, we've talked a bit about the operations of the Muslim guerilla
11 force in Eastern Bosnia. In part that can be seen as simply -- almost
12 self-organising local initiative, but it clearly relates to the 2nd Corps
13 in Tuzla --
14 THE INTERPRETER: Could the speaker slow down for the benefit of
15 the interpreters.
16 A. I'm very sorry to interpreters and transcribers alike.
17 When we come to the end of 1992, in the autumn, when these
18 operations are being successful in creating area under Muslim control in
19 Eastern Bosnia, and I think at one point also Srebrenica and Zepa even
20 become joint for a time, the context of that is fairly weak Serbian
21 forces, because the Serbian forces are concentrating on the Posavina
22 corridor, to which we've made reference as the lifeline for the Serbian
23 project across the north. In that context, I think we have to understand
24 that there was coordination at the end of 1992 and the beginning of 1993
25 between the forces operating in Srebrenica and Cerska, and those of 2
1 Corps command. And there was an overall strategic position where the
2 intention, by using the guerilla forces and their operations, aside from
3 the guerilla strategy and controlling the territory itself, was
4 diversionary, that is, to put demands on Serbian forces while 2 Corps
5 watched an operation north to try and cut the Posavina Corridor, which,
6 indeed, it did for a period around Christmastime 1992 for about 15 days,
7 and then again in January for a few days later.
8 So all this is part of an overall structure. So I don't know if
9 I've made this any clearer at all, but I think what I want to make clear
10 is there were formal structures, there were formal plans. But at the same
11 time, when I made that comment about the character of the army of
12 Bosnia-Herzegovina, it was that the structures themselves were evolving
13 and changing and were forming to become something reasonably fixed, which
14 I think you can say happened in the second half of 1992. But the full
15 character of the army still, in my judgement, and, as I say, that of
16 others with greater expertise in professional terms, was that it still
17 didn't have the qualities of a full army by the end of the war. It
18 doesn't mean that there wasn't command and control, or that there were no
19 structures for command and control. All that -- wherever you even had
20 guerilla operations, they were not part of an overall strategic approach
21 relating to the very formal structures, such as that example of 2 Corps
22 and the attempt to cut the Posavina Corridor by using the guerilla
23 operations coordinated to put pressure on Serbian forces to weaken Serbian
25 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: Thank you. We have seen that on the Serb
1 side, they maintained that under the Serb authority should not only be
2 those parts of Bosnia where they actually were in the majority, but also
3 those parts where they would have been if it not had been due to the acts
4 under the Second World War. How does that affect the eastern part of
5 Bosnia, which we are dealing with in this case? Were they actually
6 landscapes, geographical areas, where the Serbs, up until and during the
7 Second World War, had been in clear majority? Do you know anything about
9 A. I don't know enough to pass serious comment on it.
10 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: Okay.
11 A. I can certainly say that the weight of the -- of that question
12 goes to northwestern Bosnia and the area with Croatia on the other side of
13 it, Kardun. Whether any of it goes to Eastern Bosnia, I would hesitate to
14 say in a situation like this.
15 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: We have heard your explanation about this Serb
16 project, and we have heard about the changes which took place in their
17 constitution regarding the people of Serbia. Have you found any written
18 documentation regarding this cleansing policy? You have described how it
19 took place, how they thought to get rid, somehow, of the non-Serb
20 population. Have you seen any written orders or declarations or proposals
21 saying what exactly should be done with the Muslims, for instance.
22 A. If I understand Your Honour correctly, we had one of those earlier
23 this morning which spoke specifically about removing the civilian Muslim
24 population from the territories we were talking about in this case. We
25 have -- there were other cases where you see the term "cleansing,"
1 "etnicko ciscejne", being introduced. And I think the understanding of
2 that has to be that the intention, wherever it is to be used, is to clear
3 those territories of the non-ethnic Serbs, and certainly of any non-ethnic
4 Serbs who are not prepared to live under an ethnic Serb policy.
5 The term was originally coined and, as I recall, reported in the
6 Financial Times in -- I'd have to go and look for it -- by Vojislav
7 Seselj, as far as I'm aware, in 1992 as a way of describing what it was
8 that was taking place. Vojislav Seselj was a Serbian politician who was
9 also leader of one of the prominent paramilitary formations that we
10 discussed also, the Beli Orlovi.
11 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: Do you remember we discussed the meaning of
12 the word "crush," to be crushed.
13 A. Yes.
14 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: And my question is: Have you seen in any
15 detail a description of what should be done? You mentioned that it could
16 have many meanings, but has anybody said what actually should be done to
17 the non-Serbs.
18 A. Well, with reference to the word "crushed," if I may, that was
19 because the translation that came through said "crushed," which was not
20 the original word, with respect to the translators. I just wanted to be
21 clear that that -- that the word shouldn't be taken through.
22 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: I'm aware of that.
23 A. The word -- a word close to "crushed," "unistenje." Is one that
24 was used by Radovan Karadzic in the parliament in October 1992 -- sorry,
25 1991, in the discussions regarding Bosnian sovereignty and the declaration
1 of sovereignty, which is taken by many as a warning that the Serbs -- that
2 the Muslims will be destroyed, if this goes through. I say it's taken by
3 many. Again, in retro -- ex post facto, it certainly can be read as
4 indicating what the intention was. I always have to caution that
5 political rhetoric in the heat of the moment in parliament might not
6 necessarily be setting an agenda. But I don't think we can have any
7 doubt, leaving aside where the references come, and you can -- you could
8 piece together these references, that what makes it clear is the
9 consistent and coordinated action on the ground. It's action which cannot
10 take place without preparation and planning. Anybody who knows the first
11 thing about trying to organise, probably, a party let alone the use of
12 armed forces and campaigns of this kind including the creation of
13 detention centres, the laying out of the paperwork to go with it, the use
14 of integrated networks to transfer people from one place to another,
15 including from places in the so-called Republika Srpska, into Serbia
16 proper, Serbia as in Serbia Montenegro, this is all part of something
17 which is just so completely consistent and coordinated that it could not
18 happen without it being clearly planned and understood, but quite possibly
19 through verbal communication a lot of the time, because many things were
20 done through an oral manner, because you generally don't want to leave a
21 written record of giving specific instructions for some of the things we
22 discuss. Although over the years, as I say, little pieces, even in
23 writing, have emerged.
24 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: Thank you.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Judge Eser.
1 JUDGE ESER: Dr. Gow, I also have some questions. I would have
2 had the same question as Judge Brydensholt, but I have some additional
3 ones, and they follow the sequence of the examination and the
4 cross-examination, starting with a question with regard to the ethnicity,
5 the ethnic composition of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
6 Perhaps it would be helpful to get the Prosecution document 367,
7 if it could be placed on the -- what do you call it, ELMO? I still don't
8 know what it means, ELMO.
9 Perhaps I can already start with my question.
10 THE WITNESS: Electric monitor, maybe.
11 JUDGE ESER: You told us that the Muslims make up about 40 per
12 cent of the population --
13 A. I think I said 44.
14 JUDGE ESER: Okay. In this area. But if you see Prosecution
15 Exhibit 367, you remember when you told us that the area where Muslims
16 live should not be -- should be -- wait?
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Apparently there is a problem with this document.
18 Are you sure it's 367? Did you find it?
19 JUDGE ESER: It was a map. Do you remember the map you had? I
20 think it was described as areas which are mainly occupied by Muslims or
21 mainly by Serbs.
22 A. This is the military control one?
23 JUDGE ESER: Yes. And you told us that the Muslim region should
24 not be considered as a comprehensive one, but there have been corridors in
25 between, or areas where it was not possible to go from one to the other.
1 But if you have this map in view, you get the impression that Serbs are
2 occupying much more of the territory than the Muslims, so I think that the
3 Serbian occupation is more than 60 per cent compared to --
4 MS. SELLERS: Excuse me, I don't want to interrupt Your Honour.
5 But we do have it. We'll put it up on Sanction just for the benefit of
6 the view, certainly until the registrar has the copy.
7 JUDGE ESER: It might be this one now.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, 367. We had it in colour. There is a colour
9 version of it somewhere.
10 JUDGE ESER: Now what was -- the Republika Srpska, if I'm correct
11 in assuming, was thought to be part of Eastern Bosnia, not Western Bosnia,
12 although the western part of Bosnia-Herzegovina was occupied by Serbs.
13 Now, was the idea of the project, of the new project, that Republika
14 Srpska should also encompass the western part of Bosnia.
15 A. Absolutely. If that wasn't clear from what I said, I'm quite
16 surprises, but forgive me for not being clear. The Republika Srpska was
17 the whole of the territory to which the Bosnian Serbs aspired, included
18 all of the territory that can be seen on this map as under Serbian
19 control. And bear in mind, this is not -- this is not an ethnic
20 distribution map, this is a map indicating areas of military control,
21 although there is a bit of consistency between those two factors.
22 JUDGE ESER: Why is the --
23 A. So this shows an area, all of which is taken to become -- to
24 compose the Republika Srpska, but there are aspirations to territory which
25 is not under Serbian control, as shown on this map, or what will be
1 Republika Srpska. But certainly western -- the western parts, absolutely.
2 JUDGE ESER: Could you still leave it?
3 JUDGE AGIUS: If we have the coloured one, it's better.
4 JUDGE ESER: For my purpose, I think it's enough to have this one.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, we have the coloured one now.
6 JUDGE ESER: Now, if you -- now, what was the --
7 THE WITNESS: You have the coloured one? I don't.
8 JUDGE AGIUS: You need to go on video mode.
9 THE WITNESS: Thank you, Your Honour.
10 JUDGE ESER: But this -- the red parts, which are the Serbian
11 parts, I think, would be much more -- or the green parts, the Muslim
12 parts, would be much less than 40 per cent. Would it mean that the
13 Muslims would have been driven out of these areas as well, so they would
14 have less than 40 per cent of the population.
15 A. If I understand the question correctly, and forgive me if I'm
16 going in the wrong direction here, I have to point out, just to be
17 absolutely clear, this is a map showing military control, not showing
18 ethnic proportionality and density in the population. Therefore, to read
19 a sense of proportionality on ethnicity from this map wouldn't necessarily
20 be the right thing to do.
21 What the map shows is the areas under Serbian control, and indeed
22 under the control of others. Those areas under Serbian control had almost
23 the entire Muslim population removed from them; in some cases completely,
24 in some cases as of that time not completely. The area under Serbian
25 control represents probably about two-thirds to 70 per cent of the
1 territory of Bosnia-Herzegovina. The area under Muslim or Bosnian
2 government control represents significantly less than 40, 44 per cent of
3 the territory. But to be clear, that's areas under control rather than a
4 reflection of ethnicity.
5 JUDGE ESER: But what was the goal of the new project? Was the
6 goal that all parts which have been militarily controlled by Serbs should
7 be -- later on be part of a Republika Srpska.
8 A. Indeed. And if I could ask to get the map back again? Is that
10 JUDGE AGIUS: It is. Press the next button, video evidence,
11 please, and you should get it there.
12 A. Okay. If -- am I able -- my indication does nothing here. But if
13 you can -- thank you. It's probably easier.
14 It was certainly the case that the territory under control at this
15 time should be part of the Republika Srpska. The intention was also quite
16 clearly that this territory in the east under Muslim control should be
17 part of it, and the aspiration was also, first, to cut a line along the
18 river Krivaj, which runs approximately there, and then to mop up this
19 Muslim-controlled area here. So, in fact, the territory of the Republika
20 Srpska, if the whole project had been successful, would also have included
21 this much broader swathe around Tuzla as well.
22 So the territory that was intended to be part of it was not
23 necessarily the territory that was under control, and the territory which
24 has become part of Republika Srpska, the entity within Bosnia-Herzegovina
25 under the general framework for peace agreement, is less than the
1 territory under control here as well, because, as a result of operations,
2 joint operations by Croatian forces, and Bosnian forces, first of all, and
3 then negotiations, Dayton, the territory was reduced.
4 JUDGE ESER: Thank you.
5 My second question has to do with the hostilities you talked
6 about, and you mentioned that the M-U-P, or MUP, played a significant role
7 in the very origins of the conflicts in central Bosnia. What do you mean?
8 This is literally taken from the transcript. "Played a significant role
9 in the very origins of the conflicts in central Bosnia." What do you mean
10 by "significant role"? What type of role was it? That the police --
11 A. Is it possible to get a wider context of the quotation?
12 JUDGE ESER: It was in connection with the start of conflicts
13 between the Muslim and Serb population, and that the Serb -- the Muslims
14 have been provoked, yes? In this context, you mentioned that the MUP
15 played a significant role in the origins of this conflict. What kind of
16 role was it.
17 A. The MUP was integrated as part of the crisis headquarters, or the
18 leaders of the MUP were integrated as part of the crisis headquarters that
19 were formed by the SDS party organisation, and their role was to provide
20 information, which some other people would describe as intelligence, on
21 the local non-Serbs, to draw lists of those non-Serbs who would be
22 potential leaders or otherwise potential -- significant in opposing the
23 takeover, to ensure that they would be the first ones to be detained, or
24 in some cases, they were killed, to be removed from the scene. They would
25 then be part of the process in identifying others and preparing the
1 bureaucratic elements of takeover and elimination through removal, one way
2 or another, of the non-Serbs in the community.
3 JUDGE ESER: Thank you.
4 My next question has to do with the awareness of the population of
5 what was going on. You have been very cautious in saying that you have
6 only dealt with the strategical level, so to say, but not so much with the
7 implementation in practice. But nevertheless, what, to your knowledge,
8 what was the populace, the people in Bosnia-Herzegovina be able to learn
9 and hear about what was going on in other parts of the country? For
10 instance, could the Serb villagers know what was going on in Muslim
11 villages, and vice versa.
12 A. Undoubtedly. When I was expressing caution in terms of expertise
13 that my work is principally of a strategic character, lies at the
14 strategic level, I think I also said that I don't know nothing about the
15 tactical level. Sometimes you can't understand the strategic without
16 knowing something of the tactical. But it's that I didn't have extensive,
17 necessarily, expertise. Sometimes I would, sometimes I wouldn't. But at
18 the level of what the population could or would know, there's no doubt
19 that it was possible to know, and no doubt that people knew of things that
20 were happening.
21 Now, whether they believed the reports that they would hear in
22 some cases or not, I think, has to be open to question. Had I not been in
23 the -- those Croatian-Bosnian border areas at the time that this started,
24 and I was, I would say that I probably would have treated reports of what
25 people were saying as they were coming up with scepticism as well. But
1 it's when you get such a density in the same kind of reporting when
2 there's no possibility for it have just been word of mouth and
3 repeating -- at later stages there's people who know things because
4 they've heard something, not because this happened to them firsthand. And
5 the reporting that the European Community Monitoring Mission and the UN
6 forces in Croatia, who were observing from across the border at that time,
7 I think that's -- that people had ways of knowing because not only were
8 there newspapers, of course, and television reporting some of this, but a
9 lot would spread through word of mouth. And one part of the idea inherent
10 in ethnic cleansing is that inducing fear and inducing people to move
11 because of what they've heard of what is happening, is a key component.
12 JUDGE ESER: And to your knowledge and estimation, do you think
13 that it's possible that something happens in a village, let's say 10 to 15
14 kilometres away, that the neighbouring villagers do not know what is going
15 on in the neighbourhood.
16 A. That's probably going to the very limits. I should have thought
17 that most of the time it would be hard, over a fairly short period of
18 time, for word not to pass. But I would hesitate to say with absolute
19 conviction that that had to be the case.
20 JUDGE ESER: My next question is more or less on this problem of
21 the perception of the population. We have heard about the mobilisation
22 order of April 16th, 1992. Now, these orders, which have been taken by
23 the municipality or by some army people, is it possible that the people
24 also knew of this, or was only the order taken by a certain majority but
25 that the population at large did not be acquainted with it -- did not
1 become acquainted with it.
2 A. I suppose that would depend on the means of communication, how the
3 order was made -- was made open to public knowledge. Without knowing the
4 detail, we can't be absolutely sure. I would expect that something like
5 that anyway would be reported on television and radio and in newspapers in
6 some way. Certainly those in positions of authority in that situation,
7 going back to the old -- the whole defence system and fabric, where it was
8 assumed that 85 per cent of the people would have some kind of a role,
9 whether civilian or military, in that defence operation, that there would
10 be people with responsibilities and authority who certainly would know
11 and, one way or another, would communicate as much as they thought others
12 would need to know, even if others weren't reading about the general
14 And I think I said on the first day of evidence that probably
15 everybody would know where they were supposed to go when there was a
16 mobilisation and what they were supposed to do in their little bit. It
17 wouldn't necessarily mean that they would have a more global understanding
18 of the whole of what was happening. But they know, I go and report here
19 and I do my little bit. Whether I'm going to be kind of a civilian
20 defence, protecting the local town hall, or whether I'm going to be going
21 into some MUP unit to provide some more significant role, using either
22 information or armed force, or to an element of the Territorial Defence.
23 They would know where they were supposed to report and they would know
24 what they were supposed to do more or less in that role. But there's no
25 reason particularly why they should know the whole of it. In the fog of
1 war, soldiers on the ground hardly ever, if at all, know what the big
2 picture is.
3 JUDGE ESER: Thank you.
4 My next question refers to Defence Exhibit 55. I think we don't
5 need it. It was a Defence Exhibit dealing with the renaming of units and
6 headquarters of the Territorial Defence and the command and units of the
7 army. Now, you have been a little bit cautious, I had the impression,
8 with regard to the question of what was comprised by this renaming. Now,
9 my question is: The village guards which have been established in some
10 villages, have they ever become part of the army, of what it --
11 A. Well, I think in the -- to the degree to which you noticed
12 caution, I think I was trying to stress that all -- that in time of war,
13 under the old defence doctrine, all the different elements become
14 subordinated and part of one armed force. So there may be different
15 elements of armed force, and this includes the MUP as well and any other
16 paramilitary units, volunteer units, which includes also the volunteer
17 guard units or civil defence, they all become part of one overall command
18 structure. So when I was saying there's a specific law formally
19 subjugating the Territorial Defence forces -- sorry, not subjugating,
20 making them formally part of the designation of the army, and the
21 Territorial Defence ceases to exist, I was trying to stress that, in fact,
22 all armed forces were regarded as being part of this one whole armed
24 JUDGE ESER: But in an earlier statement you have been -- I mean,
25 I asked you with regard to the village guards, you have been surprised,
1 and you didn't really say very much about the character of the village
2 guards. And we are -- that was my question, with regard to the two tiers.
3 A. I don't recall the --
4 JUDGE ESER: Allow me --
5 A. I don't recall the response and I don't recall the discussion
6 either, I'm afraid. Are you able to help me on what the nature of the
7 surprise might have been?
8 JUDGE AGIUS: Basically the surprise was that you were not aware,
9 actually, that there had been village --
10 A. I've heard of village guards. I was curious as to why there was
11 significance attached to village guards.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: Exactly. That was it, basically.
13 A. Part of the overall system, you know, you would have people in
14 villages guarding, both as volunteers, which I think was happening in this
15 case, part of the process of getting volunteers, but also people with
16 duties under the old civil protection or Territorial Defence systems as
18 JUDGE ESER: My last question refers to your own book, "Triumph of
19 the Lack of Will," which was turned in as Defence Exhibit D77. You speak
20 of Muslim guerillas, Bosnian army corps units had conducted a series of
21 raids in the area. Now, what do you mean by raid? "Raid" can be a rather
22 broad expression.
23 A. I hadn't considered that it could have been a broad expression. I
24 take it as being a fairly specific one. A raid is a mission, an
25 operation, where forces go from one place to another, carry out an action,
1 and then don't necessarily stay there and hold the territory.
2 JUDGE ESER: But what I'm --
3 A. So a raiding --
4 JUDGE ESER: But what type of actions do they do during the raids.
5 A. Oh, in these cases, they were reported as carrying out actions
6 involving the use of firearms, munitions. The reports also say that
7 places were burned, that there were allegations of massacres. Now, these
8 are areas which, given what I understand about the nature of this case, I
9 don't think it's my place to be talking about the detail on the ground,
10 but as part of that overall strategic operational perspective, those raids
11 were certainly taking place. They were taking place in terms of the
12 guerilla strategy, about which I've said something, as a way of harassing
13 the enemy and also building up strength, because one of the points in
14 building an armed force is you're seeking to acquire strength. In some
15 cases, capture weaponry and munitions. But recognising that if you sought
16 to hold the territory once you'd raided, that you would probably lose it
17 very soon. And indeed, where any territory was expanded and held in this
18 particular part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, that is, indeed, what happened
19 once Serbian forces were concentrated there again.
20 And the other aim was diversionary, as I pointed out this morning,
21 coordinating actions so that a larger force could carry out a
22 strategically more important operation, but as part of that strategic
23 approach, seeking to kind of use up Serbian forces as far as possible, to
24 give them two things to do at once rather than one.
25 JUDGE ESER: So the term raid may be clear, but what is done
1 during a raid may be very different things.
2 A. What's done -- yes, raid -- it's very simply -- is referring to a
3 mission, an operation which has limited -- so an air raid, the aircraft,
4 they take off from one place, they go, they carry out bombing or whatever,
5 rocket, whatever, ground assault, on a particular place, and then they go
6 back. Special forces carry out raiding missions. They'll go from one
7 place, they'll go and carry out the operation. Then they'll return. The
8 aim is not to stay there and to hold the ground.
9 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
10 Judge Brydensholt has a further question, and then I'll come to my
12 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: We have seen that there were regulations for
13 payment of some wages to soldiers, commanders, and so on, also to members
14 of the Territorial Defence when they were actually participating in
15 fighting. But you also added that even if those regulations were in
16 place, that, as far as I remember you said, they were not always paid.
17 You were aware of that. Could you elaborate a bit on that? Because that
18 is of substance in this case here.
19 A. I think that's simply that, although the personnel at times were
20 owed monies, the money was not necessarily there to pay them and was not
21 being used to pay them. That can happen to people in other walks of life
22 as well, that they are contracted to be paid a certain amount, but the
23 person responsible for paying it is not in a position to do it, or chooses
24 not to do it because they don't have the money elsewhere. So I think
25 there were reports, at times, that people in the VRS were not being paid.
1 I wouldn't regard that necessarily -- I don't want to prejudge what's in
2 Your Honour's mind. I wouldn't necessarily regard that as being a
3 significant issue, whether or not they were actually paid. They were owed
4 the money and promised that it would eventually be paid.
5 But it is significant that when there were -- there was payment to
6 officers, it came from Belgrade, and that when payment was passed down,
7 presumably it was coming from -- to the lower ranks, it was presumably
8 from the same budget as well.
9 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: Have you any idea how widespread the payment
10 or non-payment was at all? Were they at all paid.
11 A. I believe people were paid, but intermittently. Whether or not
12 anybody was ever paid all that they were owed, I'm afraid I don't know.
13 And the extent is -- would be very hard to judge without going to find out
14 specific information.
15 JUDGE BRYDENSHOLT: I thought it could be that you have some
16 documentation, but you don't.
17 A. No, I don't.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. I have a few questions. Monday you mentioned
19 the Patriotic Front.
20 A. Patriotic League.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Patriotic League. Was it still in existence in the
22 period, June 1992 till March 1993, or had it been integrated, as you've
23 entered, within the -- either the territorial force or the army itself?
24 A. You've asked me a very good question to which I can't give a
25 complete answer, because I don't actually know when, if at all, the
1 Patriotic League ceased to exist. I do know that in that period, in
2 April -- from April 1992 onwards, the Patriotic League was integrated into
3 the army of Bosnia and Herzegovina, according to General Sefer Halilovic,
4 who was a member of the Patriotic League and who became part of it, and
5 was then Chief of Staff in the Bosnian army. The Patriotic League was the
6 spinal cord. This was the equivalent of the security service line that
7 Milosevic's people had running through the JNA and into the VRS, VJ. It
8 was something of that kind. It was the thing which provided the unifying
9 element, the ghost in the machine of what became the Bosnian army. That's
10 where the leading elements came from and where part of the defence
11 planning prior to the formation of the army came from.
12 I have to say, I don't actually know. It's a good question for me
13 to go and find out when, if at all, it actually ended. And if Your Honour
14 knows the answer, I would be very grateful to know as well. But what I do
15 know is that it was integrated as part of the integration into the Bosnian
16 army. Whether or not the Patriotic League and membership of it continued
17 beyond the summer of 1992 or the autumn of 1992, I'm not certain. I've
18 seen some Patriotic League membership cards. If I can find copies of them
19 again, I'll go and see what dates they have on them.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Did it have -- did the Patriotic League have a
21 command structure? Was it based on -- did it have a command structure?
22 And was it also divided by regions and by municipalities, to your
24 A. It was initially and primarily a political organisation/body for
25 purposes of preparing for defence. It had membership outside
1 Bosnia-Herzegovina as well as inside it, within emigre, migrant
2 communities. And within that political structure, the idea was to recruit
3 people, who in some cases, in particular places, who would be the local
4 people. I wouldn't go as far necessarily as to equate this with the
5 crisis headquarters as part of the SDS campaign. But I see it as
6 something going in the same direction. So it has a structure relating to
7 the leadership of the SDA, Izetbegovic's Muslim-dominated party, and with
8 a structure which then relates from that central leadership through a
9 limited hierarchy to people in different places who will be in positions
10 to assist or to take control when the time comes. Those people then, or
11 significant numbers, are recruited into -- recruited into or integrated
12 into the Bosnian army. But there's also a period in which the Patriotic
13 League and, indeed, some other Muslim paramilitary forces are operating.
14 The Patriotic League are the owners of the title Green Berets,
15 which if you read around you will find references to. But the term is
16 used loosely to refer to some of those other groups as well. But they are
17 all groups which, as this evolution of the Bosnian army takes place, are
18 formed into one. But in relation to an organisational structure which was
19 in place to have them ready to be able to carry out missions.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Was there a parallel move or measure also taken on
21 the Serbian side? In other words, were paramilitaries, for example,
22 officially incorporated into the army, the Territorial Defence units?
23 Were they officially incorporated into the army? Was this something which
24 was the normality, in other words, as one went --
25 A. I think that -- my recollection is that I said something about
1 this already, and that was that the paramilitaries on the Serbian side,
2 which were primarily organised and coordinated by the Belgrade
3 authorities, under a law of 1991, formally were treated as part of the
4 Belgrade armed forces. I would assume -- and that was one integrated
5 structure with the VRS, although formally separated for the purposes we
6 discussed. And in that context, the paramilitary forces on the Serbian
7 side, run by the Serbian security service, would be put under the command
8 of the Yugoslav army, and the VRS would then be an extension of that. And
9 if any units were operating, including the volunteer forces -- I mean,
10 there were some volunteer forces raised and mobilised in
11 Bosnia-Herzegovina. They were put under the control of the VRS, which
12 again was still part of the overall -- under the control of the VJ staff
13 in Belgrade.
14 So I think if that helps the answer, it's that it wasn't an exact
15 parallel, but you have the Serbian security service in terms of planning
16 paramilitary structures, political-military arrangements. That's, in some
17 way, an equivalent to the Patriotic League, but it's not a precise
18 equivalent. But they can form party organisations.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: In fact, my intention was to draw a difference, if
20 there is one.
21 The next question is: Is there an official date that you could
22 indicate for the coming into existence, officially, of the army of Bosnia
23 and Herzegovina.
24 A. Officially, it's the 15th of April, 1992.
25 JUDGE AGIUS: And Halilovic, Sefer Halilovic, became Chief of
1 Staff immediately.
2 A. No. I think he was the second chief of -- I have to go back.
3 There was briefly -- there was a brief period where there was another
4 chief of staff, as I recall. If you bear with me, I can go back the dates
5 in order.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: It's not that important. I, again, like Judge Eser,
7 am going to refer you to your own book, page -- could the witness please
8 be given D77. In the meantime, I'm going to start reading. And the
9 purpose of my reading this excerpt from your book is precisely because you
10 use the word "crushing" yourself.
11 A. Okay.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: And you seem to be using it as indicating a further
13 escalation rather than a description of what had been ongoing. Please
14 refer to the last paragraph on page 141, and then to -- as it continues on
15 page 142:
16 "The notion of safe areas first arose specifically over
17 Srebrenica where the small, predominantly Muslim town in Eastern Bosnia
18 had become the focal point of a Serbian campaign to drive Muslims out of
19 the Drina valley, and where around 40.000 refugees from other communities
20 in the region had fled. Eastern Bosnia had been swept by ethnic cleansing
21 campaigns in the first month of the war in 1992, at which time numerous
22 villages in that part of the country appear to be been razed. In the
23 winter, conditions of January and February, Muslim guerillas and Bosnian
24 army 2 Corps units had conducted a series of raids in the area, capturing
25 territory from the Serbs and putting pressure on the Serbs at Bratunac, on
1 the border between Bosnia and Serbia. In these attacks, there seemed to
2 have been reprisal atrocities, meaning at a minimum summary executions.
3 The Serb response to these operations and to the pressure on Bratunac and
4 the Serbian border, and needing to secure territory to frustrate the
5 Vance-Owen plan which they were coming under pressure to accept, was to
6 begin a crushing campaign to eliminate remaining Muslim communities crush
7 in Eastern Bosnia."
8 I have two questions for you. How would you compare this crushing
9 campaign that you mention at the end of this paragraph to what
10 had been taking place earlier by the Serbs?
11 And my second question to you is with regard to the raids that you
12 mentioned. You maintain that these were being put -- made by Muslim
13 guerillas and Bosnian army 2 Corps. Yesterday, or earlier on today, when
14 you referred to these raids, and not in the context of what you have here,
15 you mentioned also -- you passed the comment to Madam Vidovic, saying
16 that, your client also was mentioned in the same context of many of these
17 raids. If he was, as far as you are aware, would you place him amongst
18 the Muslim guerillas, or would you place him within the Bosnian army 2
19 Corps? That's my question.
20 Let's start with the last one. In this paragraph, did you mean to
21 distinguish between the intensity of the ethnic cleansing campaign, as you
22 describe it in the first part of the paragraph, and the crushing campaign
23 to eliminate the remaining Muslim communities in Eastern Bosnia, as you
24 refer to it in the last part of that paragraph? Or is it just that I am
25 being carried away with my imagination.
1 A. I think we have to do at least two things here. The first is to
2 separate out the beginning of the paragraph from the end. The beginning
3 of the paragraph is referring generally to Eastern Bosnia and the manner
4 in which the campaign of ethnic cleansing had resulted in a situation
5 where most of Eastern Bosnia had been depopulated of Muslims, and that
6 many of those Muslims, several tens of thousands of them, had ended up in
7 the places -- in the enclaves, in Srebrenica, Zepa, and in Gorazde. So
8 the first part is referring to the initial campaign in the spring and
9 summer of 1992, a situation which left Srebrenica, Zepa, Gorazde, as
10 enclaves still with Muslim populations, including those who'd fled there
11 from other places.
12 The second part of it and the reference to crushing campaign,
13 you're quite right in your initial comment to identify a sense of
14 intensification, but not a sense of intensification necessarily from the
15 first part of the paragraph, but from the situation immediately preceding.
16 You made reference to the testimony earlier regarding the 2 Corps
17 operations and the use of the guerilla operations vis-a-vis that
18 strategically. Bosnian Serb forces, because control of the Posavina
19 Corridor had been broken in December/January on two occasions, the VRS and
20 VJ reinforcements had concentrated, first of all, on securing control of
21 the corridor. So this whole area had been relatively quiet in Serbian
22 terms and had not been used significantly -- significant Serbian forces
23 had not been there during this period. The Serbian forces was relatively
24 weak in the area, one of the reasons why the area under control could be
25 expanded in some of this time.
1 But once the corridor had been secured again, some of those forces
2 were moved around in Serbia, and the VJ forces were then used to
3 concentrate on trying to eliminate this enclave, and of course with it,
4 the resistance which had been shown to the Serbian campaign and the
5 project and the degree to which that had been able to have been successful
6 in widening the territory of the enclave. So the crushing is about the
7 intensification, and the very strong and heavy intensification, and I
8 think that was represented in the UNPROFOR report that I was shown by
9 Madam Vidovic before the break, where the UN military personnel and the EC
10 monitors in the area were reporting quite how intense the Serbian campaign
11 had become.
12 So the crushing there is an adjective intensifying the campaign at
13 that point, in that place. And I would still, going back to the question
14 of "crush" earlier on, I would point out that I was simply making -- the
15 crush in that context as a verb could have physical implications which
16 were not consistent with what was in the original language, text of the
17 document at that time.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay. With regard to the other point, the accused,
19 whether you would fit him under the Bosnian army 2 Corps or the Muslim
20 guerillas, since you had heard that it was sort of -- the way I understood
21 you was that news about these raids included also a mention of the
22 accused's name. So in which of these two contexts? Or just in regard to
23 raids generally.
24 A. I think initially there can be no doubt that the accused's name
25 appeared in relation to the emergence of this guerilla force operating in
1 Eastern Bosnia, and its relative success. That goes back even to the
2 initial takeover -- attempted takeover by the Serbian forces. They
3 entered Srebrenica on the 18th of April. As I understand it, even by the
4 20th, the accused was involved in leading, initially, raiding missions
5 which then became more successful, but because the Serbian forces thought
6 initially on the 18th they dealt with Srebrenica and didn't have it under
7 full control. It eventually led to a situation in which Srebrenica, the
8 enclave, emerged. So the initial association is in leading those raids on
9 a guerilla basis at that stage, and that's a reputation which, I think,
10 grows in the course of 1992, in the situation in Srebrenica, and
11 particularly in late 1992 when the operations appear to have been, in
12 Bosnian terms, more and more successful.
13 By the time we come to the end of 1992 and the beginning of 1993,
14 that association and the understanding that the accused is still leading
15 those operations has to be put in the context that the formal army of
16 Bosnia-Herzegovina has been informed that a structure has been put in
17 place formally, that the implementation of that structure has been taking
18 place, that the 2 Corps exists and covers Eastern Bosnia, these parts of
19 Eastern Bosnia, and that any forces operating should be regarded as,
20 again, in line with all the things we've said about defence doctrine and
21 things like that, as having been under the authority of 2 Corps and
22 indeed, as part of it. But they were still operating, they were still
23 physically cut off from the remainder of 2 Corps, but there were
24 connections and coordination about the use of these raiding missions in
25 December/January to divert attention, to draw off Serbian forces as far as
1 possible, to allow the concentration on the Posavina Corridor.
2 So I would see it at that stage of being certainly -- probably at
3 any stage from August formally and technically as being part of 2 Corps,
4 whatever it was, or under the authority of 2 Corps. But certainly at that
5 stage was involved as part of 2 Corps operations, but still having this
6 distinctive guerilla character and operating in a different way.
7 JUDGE AGIUS: My last questions. Are you aware of an attack on
8 the village of Ratkovici between the 21st and the 27th of June, 1992.
9 A. I'm not aware.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you aware of an attack on the village of
11 Jezestica and the hamlet of Bozici on the 8th of August 1992.
12 A. I'm not aware, at least not as such. I may well have read about
13 these things but I ...
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Are you familiar with these places, Ratkovici,
15 Jezestica, Fakovici, Jelovac.
16 A. I'm not familiar with the name Jezestica. But, I mean, Ratkovici
17 is a name I've heard, but then I cannot -- I have to say also that many of
18 these names crop up so many times in different places.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Again, are you familiar with an alleged attack, the
20 Prosecution is alleging that the accused led an attack on the 5th of
21 October, 1992, on the village of Fakovici.
22 A. Again, I'm not specifically familiar with that. I have to say, if
23 these are -- if all of the names are in the indictment, and I was given a
24 copy of the indictment to read. But I've never regarded it as being my
25 business to go to the detail of the cases.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: I just want to make sure whether you are aware of
2 these facts --
3 A. Yes.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: -- not through reading the indictment.
5 A. I can say --
6 JUDGE AGIUS: That's not the point I want to make.
7 A. I would say I would be aware through that. I think it's quite
8 likely I would be aware of them through reading, for example, my
9 colleague's book, Dr. Hornig's book on Srebrenica.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: And again, the attack on village of Bjelovac between
11 the 14th and the 19th of December, and the joining hamlet of Sikirica?
12 A. I think you're going to get the same answer to all of these
13 questions, which is that I will have read about these sorts of --
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay, so you were --
15 A. -- but I have no specific knowledge about them.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: You are not in the position to confirm to us that
17 the alleged attacks on these villages, if, indeed, they did take place,
18 were part of this diversion --
19 A. Actually, no, I can help you on that count, because the dates you
20 gave were not part of the -- were prior to the diversionary action. The
21 diversionary action was the end of 1992. You read out dates in May and
22 June, I believe.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: The dates are June, August, October, December, and
24 then January of 1993 and January of --
25 A. December and January operations could -- probably should be seen
1 as part of the diversionary effort, the diversionary effort was also --
2 also had the complementary guerilla, local issues attached to it as well,
3 securing control of territory, if possible. But certainly
4 December/January would be part of the -- as well as being operations in
5 the area, but it would also be part of the diversionary campaign.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. I don't think we have any further
7 questions, which basically means, Dr. Gow, that your testimony comes to an
8 end here. I thank you for your -- first of all, for accepting to be an
9 expert witness in this case, and for coming over and spending basically
10 three days with us. And I thank you on behalf of Judge Brydensholt, Judge
11 Eser, but I also thank you on behalf of the Tribunal.
12 You will be escorted now out of the courtroom by Mr. Usher, and
13 I'm sure you will receive all the assistance you require to facilitate
14 your return back --
15 THE WITNESS: Evacuation.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, evacuation. On behalf of everyone present
17 here, I wish you a safe journey back home.
18 THE WITNESS: Thank you very much to Your Honour, and thank you to
19 Your Honours for conducting this in such a pleasant manner.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
21 [The witness stands down]
22 JUDGE AGIUS: I suppose there is nothing else, no further business
23 to transact today, which is perfectly convenient for me. I go to bed now
24 and try to get rid of this cold that I have, which is becoming worse and
25 not better.
1 Tomorrow morning, we have the videolink; correct?
2 MR. WUBBEN: That's correct, Your Honour.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: And I wish -- I'm sure that you will do your best to
4 finish it tomorrow, because otherwise we will have problems. On Friday,
5 we will have Manas testifying, and then we will deal with those matters
6 that I mentioned on Monday, the outstanding motions, okay?
7 I thank you so much. The sitting is adjourned until tomorrow
8 morning at 9. We start at 9, just the same, for the videolink, no?
9 MR. WUBBEN: It's up to the Registry. You instructed the Registry
10 to --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: The instructions are for 9.00, but I don't know
12 if -- all right, okay. Everything is in place. Thank you so much. We
13 will be here in this courtroom, no? Or courtroom 3, I think. Courtroom 3
14 we're going to be tomorrow. Okay. We will rise.
15 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 12.15 p.m.,
16 to be resumed on Thursday, 25 November 2004, at
17 9.00 a.m.