1 Tuesday, 13 January 2009
2 [Open session]
3 [The accused entered court]
4 [The witness entered court]
5 --- Upon commencing at 9.06 a.m.
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Registrar, good morning to you. Could you
7 kindly call the case, please.
8 THE REGISTRAR: Good morning, Your Honours. This is case
9 IT-05-88-T, The Prosecutor versus Vujadin Popovic et al.
10 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Thank you. All the accused are here.
11 Representation is exactly as it was yesterday; that means only
12 Mr. Nikolic for the Beara Defence team missing.
13 Okay. Good morning to you, General, and welcome back. We are
14 going to proceed with your testimony.
15 Ms. Fauveau.
16 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you, Your Honour.
17 WITNESS: SLOBODAN KOSOVAC [Resumed]
18 [Witness answered through interpretation]
19 Examination by Ms. Fauveau: [Continued]
20 Q. [Interpretation] Yesterday, you were talking about the absence
21 and standing in for a commander. What is the situation with the Chief of
22 Staff? Who replaces the Chief of Staff when he's absent?
23 A. In the absence of the Chief of Staff, the most senior officer
24 stands in for him.
25 Q. I would now like to show you another training book. That's not
1 the one we talked about yesterday. This is Exhibit 5P -- P3178. This is
2 an exhibit from the Prosecutor's case.
3 Actually, the relevance of this training book is that it is more
4 legible than the one we were looking at yesterday.
5 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I need, please, the following page.
6 Could we please zoom in and enlarge on the bottom part of the page.
7 Q. So yesterday, we talked about the function of the Chief of Staff
8 who at the same time is the deputy commander.
9 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I would now like to move to the
10 following page, please, and I need to show the first part of this page.
11 Now, what you can see on this page is the Administration in Charge of
12 Operational Affairs and Training, and one sees that next to the function
13 of the chief of this administration, there is no mention that this is the
14 Deputy Chief of Staff.
15 Q. Now, what is the influence of this fact on the powers and the
16 competences and the authorities of the Chief of Administration in Charge
17 of Operational Affairs and Training when the Chief of Staff is absent?
18 A. First of all, I'm not sure whether we understood each other
19 properly. I heard from the translator that this is a training book.
20 Actually, what I'm seeing here is a working map of the personnel organs.
21 Based on the extracts from the establishment papers - this is the first
22 three column - they fill in the data relating to the actual situation in
23 the VRS. And based on this map, they follow whether any positions are
24 filled or not. In this particular instance, in the operations and
25 training administration, the establishment position has been filled
1 properly, and you can see that after Major General Dragutin Ilic came,
2 Miletic -- Radivoje Colonel, Miletic Radivoj. This is consistent with
3 what the information show. The chief of the administration and
4 training -- training and operation administration is at equal footing
5 with other chiefs.
6 Q. Now, when you say that the chief of the administration for
7 operational affairs and training is at the same level as the other
8 chiefs, can you please explain what other chiefs you were referring to.
9 A. Specifically, I was referring to the chiefs of branches.
10 Q. Now, this training book, according to this booklet, can you
11 conclude who in the staff of the Main Staff would have replaced General
12 Milovanovic in his absence?
13 A. One might conclude that under normal circumstances, the first one
14 to stand in would be General Miletic, but one also can conclude that if
15 the Chief of Staff goes away, he appoints someone else to stand in for
17 Q. When the Chief of Staff is temporarily absent, what were the
18 functions of the person who would stand for him -- stand in for him?
19 A. The person standing in at the time are consistent with the period
20 of absence, which means that on his behalf he can only do the things that
21 are urgent at that moment and nothing beyond that.
22 Q. When a person stands in for the Chief of Staff who is temporarily
23 absent and if in the period of that replacement the commander is also
24 absent, does the person who replaces the Chief of Staff also
25 automatically assume the functions of deputy commander?
1 A. Since the function of the deputy commander does not exist per se,
2 he cannot discharge these duties.
3 Q. Now, in that case when there is no Chief of Staff and no
4 commander, the person who stands in for the Chief of Staff, does that
5 person also replace the commander?
6 A. No. There is no way for this person to replace the commander.
7 Q. Could you please explain the difference between "standing in for"
8 and "replacing" somebody?
9 A. Absolutely. The difference is very clear. Replacement is a
10 temporary action for a certain duration in a certain place and is
11 implemented only in emergency situations. Rather, decisions can be made
12 and they are very limited in nature. Certain things should be just
13 noted, some basic things should be resolved, and if there is an emergency
14 in combat operations he is devoid of any right of taking decisions.
15 Standing in is a status in the service when all the jurisdiction areas
16 are transferred to another person. The difference between the person
17 standing in and the one who actually discharged his duties is virtually
18 non-existent, and the only thing that should be underlined is that it is
19 limited in time.
20 Q. I would now like to show you Exhibit 5D753. This is the Law
21 Pertaining to the Army from the 1st of June 1992, the law from Republika
23 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] And what I need is page 15 in B/C/S
24 and 59 in English.
25 Q. I think that there is a mistake in the interpretation -- in
1 translation in English. I'd like to read -- I'd like to ask you to read
2 out loud Article 156.
3 A. "An officer who is temporarily unable to carry out his duties
4 will be assigned and stand in on a temporary basis per establishment. A
5 standing person can carry out other duties in addition to his regular
6 duties, and this assignment cannot last longer than six months or up to
7 one year if so decided by a second superior officer."
8 Q. Could you please explain -- I think yesterday you touched upon
9 it. Could you please, though, explain what according to the law the
10 expression "temporarily prevented" means?
11 A. To be temporarily prevented means that the officer assigned to a
12 post is unable to carry out his duties.
13 Q. Now, what about this senior officer? Is that person prevented
14 from exercising his duties when he's in the area of his unit but not at
15 the post of command?
16 A. No way. No officer, especially of that rank, can and discharge
17 duties from that post. His work-place is the entire zone. The Chief of
18 Staff, his work-place, is actually the whole of Republika Srpska.
19 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Your Honour, I do not know about
20 the others, but I have a problem with the transcript.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: What's the problem?
22 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Okay, it's working now. Thank you.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Thank you.
24 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
25 Q. Now, in our case General Milovanovic, head of staff, was in at
1 the period of time at the post of advanced command. In that particular
2 case, in such a case, if -- was General Milovanovic prevented from
3 assuming or exercising his functions?
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
5 MR. VANDERPUYE: I don't have a problem with the question as a
6 general proposition, but it calls for a factual conclusion. "Whether
7 he's within the zone of responsibility and prevented otherwise from
8 exercising his functions?" is a factual question, which this witness is
9 not qualified to answer. If it's by virtue of his absent solely, then I
10 think he is, but if it relates to certain circumstances --
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: -- concerning the absence, that's a difference
14 JUDGE AGIUS: I can see your point. I can see your point. I
15 think -- yes, okay.
16 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] May I rephrase the question?
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, by all means, Ms. Fauveau, please. Thank you,
18 both, for your pragmatism.
19 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
20 Q. Now, in the Army of Republika Srpska, the Chief of Staff -- can
21 the Chief of Staff exercise his functions of advanced command?
22 A. I can give you an indirect answer. First of all, the notion of a
23 forward command post involves several command posts: the basic one, the
24 forward one, and the rear one, not to mention the reserve or any other.
25 Altogether, they constitute a command post, which means in whichever of
1 these posts he is, he is at the command post and, therefore, exercising
2 his duties relevant for that post.
3 Q. Now, I think you said -- we have a problem in the transcript on
4 page 6, line 18 and 19. You talked -- you were talking about several
5 posts in the command structure. The position which is the basic one, the
6 post that is the forward one, and the logistics position, what about all
7 of these positions? What do they boil down to?
8 A. I might sometime over-do my precision talking. There is a single
9 command post which is composed of several elements. One of the elements
10 of a command post is the basic command post. Another element is the
11 forward command post; therefore, a command post is a system made of a
12 number of other systems and sub-systems. So wherever you are, either in
13 one of the systems or sub-systems, you are within the system itself.
14 Q. What are the consequences of representation? How is
15 representation reflected on the status of the officer who stands in for
16 someone or replaces or represents that person?
17 A. The consequences of representations are if a person is
18 represented by someone and the position is vacant, the person who had
19 been in this position previously cannot continue to do the duties, and
20 the one assigned as the representative will discharge full duties and,
21 therefore, enjoy all the rights and responsibilities to carry out his
22 duties in the best possible way; and of course, in compliance with his
23 performance he would be incentuised [as interpreted] to do his duty.
24 Q. Now, does representation have a consequence on the officer who
25 stands in for somebody else?
1 A. When I said "reward" or "incentive," I meant pay, among other
3 Q. In paragraph 3 of Article 156 of the Law of the Army that you
4 have before you, there is one decision that is mentioned. Could you
5 please say what decision is referred to in this paragraph?
6 A. In paragraph 3 of this article, two things are mentioned; that is
7 to say, that the replacement can't last no longer than six months, upon a
8 decision of one officer and another officer, and that both replacements
9 have to be based on a decision. Actually, an order is issued to that
10 effect, and it contains specific elements as to which post is to be
11 replaced, who is going to be the replacement, in what capacity, and what
12 the duration would be, but it cannot extend the period of six months.
13 Q. Now, is it possible to be a representative according to the law
14 with all of the legal consequences without there being a written decision
15 about it?
16 A. It's not possible. A huge array of regulations govern this; one
17 is the law, the regulations on financial activities, the rules of
18 service, and without any of these rules, no valid decision can be taken.
19 And in that situation, no subordinate is -- can be forced to carry out
20 the order issued under such circumstances.
21 Q. What about the decisions about representation? Could they be
22 found in the personal dossier of an officer? I mean, if you look if the
23 personal file of an officer, can you find a decision about representation
24 if there was such a decision?
25 A. This is a crucial decision for the status and service of every
1 officer, and it must be found. There is no talking about whether it can
2 or cannot be found because many other consequences stem from that
4 Q. Can you please tell us if from a linguistic standpoint, both in
5 the JNA, as in the Army of Republika Srpska, the difference between
6 replacement and representation was always made?
7 A. Absolutely. It's an essential and professional difference, and
8 every soldier has this difference, distinction in his blood.
9 Q. I would now like to show you Exhibit P412. I'd like to show you
10 two rules now. The first one is P412. This is a rule pertaining to the
11 corps of the army, the land army of the JNA. And I would like to have
12 page 36 in B/C/S and 22 in English, please. In the paragraph just before
13 58, you can read that the chief of the operational application is the
14 Chief of Staff, the Deputy Chief of Staff, and the B/C/S takes -- uses
15 the word "replacement" or "replaces." Can you see this text?
16 A. Yes.
17 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I would like the witness to be
18 shown P410. P410 is The Rules Concerning the Responsibilities of the
19 Corps of the Land Army, Land Forces, in Peacetime. This also is rules
20 from the former JNA. Could you give us page 12 in B/C/S and 10 in
21 English, please.
22 Q. Could you read the paragraph number 2, sub-paragraph of number
23 13, because there is a mistake in the English translation of this
24 sentence. Can you read this sentence aloud, please?
25 A. I see Article 12 on the screen.
1 Q. Yes, just before this Article 12, the last sentence.
2 A. "In the absence of the Chief of Staff, the chief of operations
3 and training shall stand in for him."
4 Q. In this specific case, does the word "represent" have the same
5 meaning as what is meant by "represents" according to the law?
6 A. That word has the same meaning, but two distinctions are
7 important here. First, you showed me the rule of the ground forces, and
8 then you showed me the rule on jurisdictions and competences of the
9 ground forces rule. These are very different documents. The rule of the
10 ground forces is intended for commands in order to creatively apply the
11 provisions of that rule depending on the situation of their units, the
12 situation on the ground, et cetera. It's not binding in any way. It is
13 a guide-line, and we can understand very clearly that the rule of ground
14 forces contains a recommendation that in the absence of this and that, he
15 shall be replaced by so-and-so or so-and-so shall stand on him, which can
16 or may not happen. Whereas, in this document, it is said very precisely,
17 in the absence of the Chief of Staff, the chief of operations and
18 training shall stand in for him, which means that this rule stipulates
19 that in the absence of the Chief of Staff, an order may be issued to the
20 effect that only the chief of operations and training may stand in for
21 him, no one else. But, it has to happen pursuant to an order. It
22 doesn't happen automatically. An order has to be issued to stipulate
23 this stand-in.
24 Q. These two rules which I've shown you are for the corps. Could
25 they also be applied automatically to the Main Staff?
1 A. In addition to the fact that they differ in essence, one is a
2 rule and the other is a rule book -- I don't know if this distinction can
3 be translated properly. This --
4 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the last part
5 of the answer?
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Madam Fauveau, did you hear the interpreters? They
7 would like the witness to repeat. Yes.
8 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
9 Q. Could you please repeat the last part of your answer concerning
10 precisely my question, which was, Do these rules or can these rules be
11 automatically applied to the Main Staff since they are rules which
12 concern the corps?
13 A. Neither the rule of the ground forces nor the rule on competences
14 of the ground forces corps may be applied to the Main Staff of the VRS.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I would now go back to your report,
16 5D759, Exhibit 759 of your report. In B/C/S, it will be page 19, and in
17 English, page 25. What I am interested in is the last part -- sorry, a
18 bit lower, the bottom of the page. It's the last paragraph, last
19 paragraph within paragraph 51. It's the top of page 25 in English.
20 Q. In this paragraph, you wrote that the fact that General Miletic
21 signed a great number of documents as representative does not reflect the
22 fact that he had the function of a representative. Could you explain
23 your conclusion?
24 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
25 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President. In the transcript,
1 receiving the term "representative" repeatedly instead of "stand in," and
2 I just want to make sure, A, that we're talking about the same thing
3 since it's a relatively important concept.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: All right.
5 MR. VANDERPUYE: And the second thing is that in the report
6 itself, the English translation uses the term "stand in."
7 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. That, I was thinking about myself, this last
8 part of that.
9 Yes, Madam Fauveau, please.
10 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] As far as I am concerned, I accept
11 "standing in for" in this context.
12 JUDGE AGIUS: And incidentally, following the proceedings both
13 yesterday and particularly today, this is how it has been translated
14 almost all along, into English, in other words, because that was also
15 something that I wanted to draw your attention to since you are probably
16 following in French. Yes, not always. This is why most of the time, not
17 always. So I suggest that if you are interested in this that you also
18 try and follow on your monitor because most of the time it has been
19 "standing in for," but sometimes it hasn't. And also, the way it's been
20 translated in the document here has not always been...
21 But anyway, I am saying this, of course, each time there is a
22 variation it will not be taken by the Trial Chamber as prejudicial to the
23 position taken by you or by the Prosecution or by anyone else, for that
24 matter. It's still open for your presentations in due course. Thank
1 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you very much, Mr. President,
2 but it's as I tell you. In this context, I accept "standing in for" as
3 the proper expression.
4 I would like to repeat my question.
5 Q. How did you reach this conclusion and the fact that General
6 Miletic signed a certain number of documents as representative or
7 standing in for the Chief of Staff? Standing in for did not reflect the
8 function of standing in.
9 A. First of all, by studying a large number of documents that had
10 been made available to me, all sorts of documents and enactments, and the
11 distinction is important; second, from talking with competent officers
12 with whom I had occasion to meet, officers of the VRS, I came to the
13 conclusion and established the fact that he signed certain documents such
14 as reports, information papers, et cetera, and not combat documents. In
15 the following part of the report, I explained what combat documents mean.
16 We can see that by not a single one of these signatures did he
17 assume the role of Chief of Staff upon himself; rather, he was performing
18 a service role. He signed these documents and he chose, I believe, an
19 unfortunate form of signature, but it was nevertheless appropriate
20 relative to these documents.
21 Q. What were the competences and the powers of General Miletic when
22 he signed those documents as standing in for the Chief of Staff?
23 A. A moment ago, I did not quite understand the discussion between
24 you and the other counsel, but it doesn't matter. I proceed from the
25 factual situation. General Miletic never stood in the for the Chief of
1 Staff, and he signed documents you could say strictly in keeping with the
2 rule of service. But he did choose an unfortunate form of signature
3 block. For a while he signed papers correctly, which means that when the
4 Chief of Staff was not present at the basic command post and a report
5 needed to be signed so that it could go forward from the basic command
6 post, because this report needed to be sent urgently rather than via the
7 forward command post, he signed for the Chief of Staff. That was correct
8 and appropriate to the moment, to the document itself, and to the
9 consequences arising from that.
10 Later, when I read that General Milovanovic made it clear that
11 did not like to be signed -- did not like anyone to sign on his behalf,
12 another way of signature was chosen. General Miletic signed as a
13 stand-in, but again, this form was chosen depending on the moment and
14 appropriate to the document signed. This way of stand-in was chosen.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness now be shown
16 5D1017, 1017, documents from the Drina Corps of the 4th of July, 1995.
17 What I am interested in is paragraph 2 of this document where you can
18 read: [In English] "Exceptionally, a unit commander may issue an order
19 authorising a number of officers of the command, either individually or
20 by function, and specify which documents they may sign and for a stamp to
21 be affixed to their signature."
22 [Interpretation] Here, we're talking of a document of the Drina
23 Corps which applies obviously to the unit corps, Drina Corps as such, but
24 I would like to know whether this sort of rule about the signature is
25 usual in the Army of the Republika Srpska.
1 A. Yes. This paragraph 2 of this explanation developed in the Drina
2 Corps can practically be viewed as taken over from the rule book on
3 office procedures, and two things must be distinguished here: may be
4 authorised to signed, but not may be authorised to issue a document.
5 There was a tacit understanding that General Manojlo authorised General
6 Miletic to sign operative reports and reports on combat readiness.
7 Q. I believe you have already answered, but to be quite sure and
8 clear, does the authorisation to sign a document entail in itself the
9 powers of an officer who normally should have signed the document in
11 A. To be quite precise, no. If you are authorised to sign
12 something, then you are only authorised to something. If you are
13 authorised to issue a document, then you would be able to both issue a
14 document and sign it. This way an authorisation is given only to sign.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, may I consult my
16 client just a while.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Sure.
18 [Defence counsel and accused confer]
19 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President.
20 JUDGE AGIUS: You may proceed. Thank you.
21 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
22 Q. On the basis of the document which you may have seen and
23 analysed, could you tell us whether General Miletic in 1995 at any time,
24 even when he was colonel, had the power belonging to the Chief of Staff?
25 Did he have these powers?
1 A. Not for a moment. In all the time he performed the duties of the
2 chief of operations and training, he never had authorisations to perform
3 the role of the Chief of Staff. Not a single one of the Chief of Staff's
4 powers were transferred or assigned to General Miletic.
5 Q. When General Milovanovic was absent - and I am speaking of a very
6 temporary absence - to whom were transmitted his functions?
7 A. At every moment, General Milovanovic kept all the competences of
8 the Chief of Staff wherever he was on the territory of the Republika
9 Srpska. He could not assign to anyone else any of his powers or
11 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown 5D1279.
12 For the transcript, this is a conversation of the Croatian collection, an
13 intercept. Could the text be blown up a bit in B/C/S, please?
14 Q. In this conversation, this intercept, at the very beginning of
15 this conversation you can see that General Nicolai, Chief of Staff of
16 UNPROFOR, wanted to speak to General Milovanovic or with someone who had
17 the proper authority, and he eventually spoke to General Mladic. Was
18 this usual in that it was indeed the superior officer who would take a
19 conversation or a call who was for his subordinate in the absence of the
20 subordinate officer?
21 A. This is an example of excellent functioning of the chain of
22 command in the VRS. As far as I know, there were strict regulations
23 governing contacts with the UNPROFOR in terms of who was allowed to
24 maintain that contact and how. I see that one of the powers to maintain
25 contact with the UNPROFOR was transferred from General Milovanovic -- was
1 transferred from Mladic to Milovanovic. Since this power was transferred
2 only to Milovanovic, only Mladic and Milovanovic had the competence and
3 the authorisation, so only the two of them were authorised.
4 Q. I would like to come back on what you say in your report, Exhibit
5 5D759, page 21 in B/C/S and page 26 of the English text.
6 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could paragraph 59 be displayed.
7 Q. In this paragraph, you indicate that the command of the Republika
8 Srpska was defined at three levels: strategic, operational, and
9 tactical. What is the strategic level?
10 A. From the viewpoint of the VRS, the strategic level is the Army of
11 Republika Srpska or at least the main body of the forces of the VRS.
12 Q. Were certain military actions commanded at the strategic level?
13 A. Strategic operations are commanded solely from the strategic
14 level, and in certain cases the strategic level command can also command
15 operative --
16 Q. [Previous translation continues]... identifying or making the
17 plans of the operations at the strategic level?
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes --
19 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The command includes planning, as
20 well, which means --
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Mr. Vanderpuye.
22 MR. VANDERPUYE: Sorry. I didn't mean to interrupt the answers,
23 but the previous question and answer were not recorded in the
24 transcript --
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Okay.
1 MR. VANDERPUYE: -- and I wonder if he could complete those
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, let's start with that first. I am taking you
4 back, General, to a previous question that Madam Fauveau asked you. And
5 the reason for doing so is that the transcript did not complete your --
6 did not register the complete answer that you gave. The questions was as
8 "Were certain military actions commanded at the strategic level?"
9 And what we have in the transcript, which is incomplete, is as
11 "Strategic operations are commanded solely from the strategic
12 level, and in certain cases the strategic level command can also command
13 operative ..."
14 Can you continue from there, please?
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] It can also command operations or
16 operational actions, and that's it.
17 JUDGE AGIUS: Turning to you, Madam Fauveau, I think you need to
18 repeat your next question because it is also incomplete.
19 And thank you, Mr. Vanderpuye.
20 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
21 Q. Who planned the operations at the strategic level?
22 A. If I said that the strategic operations were commanded by the
23 Main Staff of the VRS and if we know that an integral part of commanding
24 is planning, then the answer is that the Main Staff of the VRS is in
25 charge of planning the main operations.
1 Q. What was the role of the Chief of Administration in Charge of
2 Operational Affairs and Education for the planning of such actions?
3 A. In the process of planning these actions, this role doesn't alter
4 at all. Operation and training organ monitors the status of the units
5 and, based on the commander's decision, drafts documents required for
6 carrying out a specific action.
7 Q. What was the role of the chief of administration in charge of
8 operations for the execution of strategic operations?
9 A. His institution or, rather, his organisational unit, that is an
10 operation centre where all the information are gathered -- is gathered,
11 they collect the information and distribute it to officers, they update
12 the states of individual units, and based on the decision of the
13 commander they pass on these decisions forward.
14 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes Mr. Vanderpuye.
15 MR. VANDERPUYE: Sorry, Mr. President. At line 19, we have a
16 question which reflects the role of the chief of administration in charge
17 of operations for the execution of strategic operations. In the previous
18 answer, the witness refers to carrying out a specific action, and it's
19 unclear whether or not the action he's referring to is a strategic
20 operation, tactical operation, or just an operation. I wonder if we
21 could just clarify that so at least the record is clear with respect to
22 his role.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Let's see if the General has understood
24 what you said in the first place.
25 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I am not quite clear on the
1 gentleman's comment.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Precisely. I asked you this question because I
3 suspected that would have been your answer. Shall I take it to my hands,
4 Madam Fauveau, or you do it? I think you need to refer him first to the
5 previous answer so that he understands exactly what is the specific
6 action more or less that it could have been referring to. I mean, you do
7 it. You're perfectly capable of doing it. I will --
8 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Thank you, Mr. President. Thank
9 you, Mr. President.
10 Q. In this part, when we were speaking of the planning and execution
11 of operations, at what level of the operations or military actions do you
12 refer -- did you refer?
13 A. When we spoke about planning operations, we were talking about
14 the operations commanded by the Main Staff of the VRS; in other words,
15 strategic operations.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Is that --
17 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
18 Q. And when you spoke -- I have to find the proper line. When you
19 speak of the chief of the administration charged with operational
20 affairs, we are indeed speaking of the chief of the administration who is
21 in charge of operational and education of the Main Staff, aren't we?
22 A. Yes.
23 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Does this clarify the questions of
24 my colleague?
25 MR. VANDERPUYE: I think it's a matter I can address on
1 cross-examination, Your Honour.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, all right. Thank you.
3 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
4 Q. Could you tell us which command in the Army of Republika Srpska
5 was -- is at the operational level?
6 A. There are several commanders at the operational levels. These
7 are corps commanders, commander of the airforce and anti-aircraft
9 Q. Which are the tasks of the commands at the operational level?
10 A. The commands of operational forces command their units, which
11 mean that they plan, organise, command, and control the operation of
12 their units. They carry out operational actions to which other forces
13 can be attached outside the corps itself.
14 Q. What was the task of the Administration in Charge of Operational
15 Affairs and Education in the planning of military actions at the
16 operational level?
17 A. Military actions at the operational level ordered by the Main
18 Staff of the VRS, once the plans had been prepared at a certain level and
19 all the documents are in place, the order and the decision are sent over
20 to the Main
21 field of responsibility in order to see whether the planned action is
22 consistent with the task. And if that is the case, then a proposal is
23 made to the commander of the Main Staff of the VRS to approve this
24 action. So his role is that within his jurisdiction he reviews the plan
25 for the operation and either gives his approval or disapproval.
1 Q. You said that these actions were prepared at a certain level. At
2 what level were these actions prepared or the plans were prepared? At
3 what level were they prepared?
4 A. At the operational level. It is corps commands that prepare
5 these decisions and orders.
6 Q. Could you tell us which command in the Army of the Republika
7 Srpska was situated at the tactical level?
8 A. They range practically from battalion to division, and the VRS
9 had all these units. The highest tactical unit was a division.
10 Q. To clarify the transcript, in your answer -- in your preceding
11 answer, one may read, at line 16, that the commander of the staff of the
12 Republika Srpska approves the actions - and we are speaking about actions
13 taken at the operational level - and after that, I think you were
14 speaking of the chief of the Administration In Charge of Operations and
15 Education. And according to the transcript, it seems that he was either
16 giving or not giving his approval or he may have disapproved. So who
17 approved those decisions? It is just to be absolutely sure. Who
18 approved those decisions of the commander at the operational level?
19 A. This decision was exclusively approved by the commander of the
20 Army of Republika Srpska, and the assistant chief for operations and
21 training does not issue any decisions. His only role, and within his
22 purview, can give an opinion about the document that he received, for
23 example, whether the decision and the order are in accordance with the
24 decision of the Main Staff of the VRS.
25 Q. We were speaking about the tactical level. Was the
1 Administration in Charge of Operational and Educational Matters of the
2 Main Staff, did it have a role to play in the preparation of operations
3 at the tactical level?
4 A. Operations are not carried out at the tactical level. It's
5 combat operations, and in this particular case, this administration has
6 no jurisdiction over the units engaged in combat.
7 Q. Did it have a role to play in the planification of combat at the
8 tactical level?
9 A. It has no jurisdiction on the tactical level.
10 Q. Did the Administration in Charge of Operational Matters have a
11 role to play in the execution or performance? I am speaking of the
12 administration at the level of the Main Staff, have a role to play in the
13 execution of operations at the operational level which was prepared by
14 the corps?
15 A. All operations prepared by the corps based on the orders issued
16 by the Main Staff of the VRS, through the operations centre or, rather,
17 the Operations and Training Administration, which is part of it, received
18 reports distributed to competent officers based on which a report was
19 prepared for the competent command; or, based on these reports, the
20 commander of the VRS can issue a corrective decision, which is then
21 passed on further through the same channels.
22 Q. I understand that this is the general position, but yesterday you
23 said that there wasn't an operational centre for the Army of the
24 Republika Srpska. Does this fact change the situation somewhat in the
25 Main Staff?
1 A. All the reports are gathered in the same place, and that is at
2 the communications centre. I said that a kind of makeshift solution was
3 made for a communications centre to be functional.
4 Q. Did all the operations prepared by the corps at the operational
5 level have the source or their basis in an order given by the Main Staff?
6 A. I am afraid we might not understand each other. Various --
7 THE INTERPRETER: Could the witness please repeat the answer
9 JUDGE AGIUS: General, one moment. The interpreters are having
10 problems. If you could start your answer again, please, and go slowly.
11 Thank you.
12 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] I apologise. All operations
13 planned and organised by the Main Staff of the VRS were followed and
14 monitored through back-feed information. All other activities and
15 actions carried out other -- by other units from operational forces were
16 not followed through because there were no direct orders for them to be
17 carried out.
18 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
19 Q. How can one distinguish between an operation and other activity,
20 a combat activity?
21 A. I said last time that whether something is to be defined as an
22 operation or not is up to the forces engaged in it, depending on the
23 task, the objective to be achieved, and the level of command that had
24 issued the decision. Therefore, for the activities, which are based on
25 the decisions made by the Main Staff of the VRS and which involved the
1 engagement of one or more operational and enforce unit, and for which it
2 is -- says very precisely that their decisions should need approval,
3 these are the operations that are run by the Main Staff of the VRS. All
4 other combat activities are natural activities pursued by corps commands.
5 Q. I would like to ask a few questions concerning the operational
6 control and in your report 5D759, page 24 in B/C/S and page 29 in the
7 English text.
8 We have seen that there were three levels of command:
9 strategical, operational, and tactical. Here, it's about operational
10 control. Is this operational control linked to the operational level of
11 the command, or is it universal?
12 A. The operational control mentioned on page 24 of my expert report,
13 due to some previous or later misunderstandings, a definition was given
14 here based and relied on the US
15 apply to the VRS. This form of operational control, as we see it here,
16 in the Army of Yugoslavia or in the VRS or any other army that derived
17 for the former Yugoslavia
18 Q. You said that in the Republika Srpska the strategic level was
19 situated at the level of the Army of the Republika Srpska. Who took the
20 decisions? Who made decisions at that level, at the strategical level?
21 A. The commander of the Army of Republika Srpska.
22 Q. And what was the role of the supreme commander?
23 A. The role of the Commander-in-Chief or the Supreme Command is
24 defined in the decision on establishing the Supreme Command, and his role
25 derives from the first census, which means to ensure the coordination of
1 all potentials of the VRS with a view to solving specific problems. That
2 means that supreme commander, in such a manner, took over upon himself
3 to -- by engaging all other resources of the state ensure coordination
4 and successful solution for the problems by the VRS. This is how it was
6 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown 5D755.
7 This is about a decision concerning the establishment of the Supreme
8 Command, and, indeed, one may see here that the Supreme Command was
9 established with an objective to coordinate and to improve the efficiency
10 of the command system of the Republika Srpska's army. And in Article 2,
11 one can see who are the members of the Supreme Command, and among these
12 members there is no member of the Republika Srpska who was mentioned.
13 Q. Is this usual, that no member of the army, and in particular the
14 commander of the army, should not be a member of the Supreme Command; is
15 it usual?
16 A. If you read Article 1 carefully, which says that "The Supreme
17 Command of the Army of Republika Srpska is hereby established for the
18 purpose of coordinating and improving the efficiency of the system of the
19 Army of Republika Srpska," which means that conditions are being created
20 for it to be more efficient and that the Supreme Command is made up of a
21 large number of key figures, then one can say that Article 1 and Article
22 2 are in accordance and in harmony and that no one from the army is
23 required to be there.
24 Sometimes, this coordination, however, had to be pursued based on
25 the situation in the army, and for that purpose in Article 3 it is
1 stipulated that if and when necessary, members of the military can be
2 included and involved in the work.
3 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Mr. President, perhaps this would
4 be a suitable moment.
5 JUDGE AGIUS: We'll have a 25-minute break. Thank you. How do
6 you feel you're going time-wise?
7 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] For the moment, I think I'm within
8 the 16 hours in question. I don't think I will go any further.
9 THE INTERPRETER: I don't think I will go beyond. Correction of
10 the interpreter.
11 --- Recess taken at 10.29 a.m.
12 --- On resuming at 11.56 a.m.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: So for the record, we didn't resume after the break
14 as we should have because there was a technical -- a major technical
15 problem, which has only been resolved now. The understanding is that we
16 will go right through until 1.45, a quarter to 2 without a break. Thank
18 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
19 Q. We were talking about the Supreme Command before the break.
20 Could the Supreme Command make decisions pertaining to military
22 A. Formally speaking, it could. It seems that sometimes it did
23 exercise this power or possibility, although it shouldn't have.
24 Q. Could the Supreme Command elaborate on its own without the Main
25 Staff participating? Could it elaborate military documents?
1 A. The answer would be almost the same as to the previous question.
2 By virtue of the very fact that the Supreme Command had the right to
3 command the army, there was no law requiring the Supreme Command to
4 involve the army in the development of military documents. Basically, in
5 such cases the army should have been involved, always. You can see on
6 the basis of some documents made by the Supreme Command that it developed
7 certain documents without the involvement of a competent qualified
8 military person.
9 Q. In your report, Exhibit 5D759, on page 26 in the B/C/S version
10 and 32 in the English version, and here referring to paragraph 71, you
11 have indicated the various characteristics or features for command. The
12 first principle is singleness of command, and the second one is
13 subordination. Then you go on to explain what the singleness or
14 uniqueness of command is. Can you please explain how this principle
15 operated in light of the existence of the Supreme Command?
16 A. Organisationally speaking, they were set up rather well. The
17 Supreme Command was supposed to pass on its decision to the Main Staff of
18 the army of Republika Srpska, and the commander of the VRS was supposed
19 to forward -- to pass the decision on to units and commanders down the
20 chain. So organisationally speaking, it functions in the best possible
21 way. However, in my report in a later chapter, I explained that it can
22 be skipped. But then again, there are mechanisms that recover the
23 principle of singleness of command, but we will come to that later.
24 Q. I would like now to show you Exhibit 5D1219, 1219. Now, this is
25 a document from the president of the republic dated 9th of March, 1995,
1 which is directly addressed to the Sarajevo
2 the fact that this document exists and that it is sent directly from the
3 president of the republic to the corps, how is it that it has an
4 influence on the respect of the principle of uniqueness of command?
5 A. Since I am a military analyst and a military expert, I want to
6 avoid getting into politics, but I will try to describe some very
7 important features of this procedure. It's obvious that the president of
8 the republic, the supreme commander, had received information that he
9 knew originated from the Sarajevo Romanija Corps, that he was anxious to
10 urgently get some details, and then for that purpose he sent a telegram
11 to the corps commander without delay.
12 If the corps commander had directly answered the president of the
13 republic, the supreme commander, he would have broken the principle of
14 single command.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Just a moment, please. Can we show
16 page 2 of this document. I would precisely like to show you the answer
17 from the Sarajevo
18 Now, what we have on the screen is the answer from the Sarajevo
19 Corps to the Main Staff of the Republika Srpska. I would like to
20 apologise, but I think that it's easier to speak as we have this answer
21 before our eyes.
22 JUDGE AGIUS: Do we have an English of translation of this?
23 THE REGISTRAR: The document in English has only one page.
24 JUDGE AGIUS: That is the first page that we saw earlier? Okay.
25 Let's proceed, and we can't do anything about it.
1 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Well, maybe we can have the
2 translation in English on the ELMO, if that's all right.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: If the document exists, we can do that.
4 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
5 Q. Could you please continue your answer, how come that the
6 commander of the Sarajevo Corps answered or sent his reply to the Main
7 Staff of the army?
8 A. I've said based on the prior telegram sent by the supreme
9 commander to the commander of the Sarajevo Romanija Corps, that if he had
10 answered directly without putting in the know his direct superior, then
11 the principle of single command in the VRS would have been breached;
12 however, the commander of the Sarajevo Romanija Corps acted in an
13 extremely professional way. He sent this document to his direct
14 superior, the commander of the Main Staff of the VRS. He acquainted him
15 with the situation and suggested a solution, and this is a perfect
16 example of how the principle of single command is restored even though
17 one step had been initially skipped.
18 Q. Now, in paragraph 2 of this reply, we can see that this is a
19 situation in which General Tolimir was in the Sarajevo Corps, and
20 according from what we read this had an influence on the facts which were
21 reported to the Main Staff and which were about the Sarajevo Corps. Can
22 you please explain how the presence of deputy [as interpreted] commander
23 of the Main Staff in a subordinated unit had an impact or an influence on
24 the way the reports were presented?
25 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
1 MR. VANDERPUYE: Sorry to interrupt again, Your Honour. We have
2 a reference to General Tolimir, I think, as a deputy commander of the
3 Main Staff, and I think that's a mistranslation.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Ms. Fauveau.
6 talked about the assistant to the commander.
7 THE INTERPRETER: Interpreter's apologies.
8 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] This document -- first of all,
9 General Tolimir acted as deputy co-commander in touring the corps. You
10 can see that this inspection had been planned in advance and it was
11 performed professionally. During this tour, this inspection tour,
12 certain problems and deficiencies had been noted as pointed out by some
13 of the officers of the corps. They believed since they had informed
14 General Tolimir that General Tolimir would pass on that information to
15 the commander of the VRS as would have been natural and that the
16 commander of the VRS would inform the supreme commander. In this belief,
17 they anticipated this sharing of information and created this document,
18 which created a bit of a problem.
19 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
20 MR. VANDERPUYE: Your Honour, at line 19 I think we have the same
21 reference again. I don't know if that's what the witness is saying. If
22 that's the case, it's fine. But I see it says:
23 "General Tolimir acted as deputy commander in touring the
25 And I just wonder if we could just clarify that or --
1 JUDGE AGIUS: I think we can.
2 MR. VANDERPUYE: -- for the record at least.
3 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Madam, if you could clarify it with the
4 witness yourself, please.
5 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
6 Q. Can you explain tell us what the function of General Tolimir was
7 in 1995, please.
8 A. General Tolimir was assistant commander of the VRS for
9 intelligence and security. He was never deputy commander nor could he
10 have been deputy commander.
11 Q. Now, in the system of command in the army of Republika Srpska,
12 did the Ministry of Defence have a role?
13 A. Not in the system of command. The Ministry of Defence was part
14 of the government and had a totally different purpose and different
16 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] May the witness now be shown
17 5D1330, please.
18 Q. Now, as you can see, this is a document that is sent by the Main
19 Staff of the armed forces of Republika Srpska to the president of the
20 republic. And in the first paragraph, you can see that the minister of
21 defence has issued some orders relating to command and control in the
22 army. Can you please tell us something about this document?
23 A. I have seen this document before. The thing is, the minister of
24 defence issued an order regulating powers in settling or determining
25 relationships within the service obstructing the function in the service.
1 By analysing in detail the provisions of this order and the situation at
2 the time in the VRS and by analysing in detail the Law on the Army of
3 Republika Srpska, it seems me that this order was inadequate. It stood
4 in the way of redressing the situation in the service, and the reaction
5 of the commander was, therefore, justified.
6 Q. Earlier, we were talking of the principles for command, and in
7 your report -- well, I don't think that it's really necessary for us to
8 come back to that. You have indicated that the second principle is that
9 of subordination. Was this principle of subordination respected in the
10 Army of Republika Srpska?
11 A. For the most part, yes.
12 Q. Did this system exist in the former JNA?
13 A. Yes, because successful command and successful performance of
14 assignments and missions is based on that principle.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can you now be shown 5D1363.
16 Meanwhile, I just want to say that this is a document from the army of
17 Bosnia and Herzegovina dated the 2nd of June, 1995
18 command of the 28th Division and the Zepa Brigade.
19 Q. As we look at the first paragraph of this document, what can you
20 say about the application of the principle of subordination in the Army
21 of Bosnia and Herzegovina?
22 A. I had occasion to look at a very extensive collection of
23 documents of the BH Army, and I could note the following: They sought to
24 observe the principle of subordination to the maximum possible, although
25 in certain situations it was breached.
1 Q. And do you have an explanation why in paragraph 2 the 28th
2 Division and the Zepa Brigade were to directly refer to the Main Staff of
3 the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina for questions relating to the supply
4 of weapons?
5 A. I can explain that, and this explanation must be put into
6 context. If we know that it was the president Alija Izetbegovic who very
7 often contacted the local authorities directly, and if we know that it
8 was commanders of brigades who contacted them directly, we see that this
9 was a direct connection without going through the superior command. The
10 superior command of the 28th Division was the 2nd Corps, and for the
11 285th Brigade it was the 28th Division. And this was set up in that way
12 in order to resolve the questions of replenishment and resupply even
13 outside the limits of the system.
14 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I would now like to show you
15 Exhibit 5D1204. This is an order from the Main Staff dated 5th of
16 September, 1993, and I'd like to show you page 4 of the B/C/S version,
17 which is page 7 in the English version.
18 Can we have the very bottom of the page in English because that's
19 what I need, paragraph 11 at the bottom of the page.
20 Q. Could you please have a look at this paragraph 11 and tell us why
21 such an order was made necessary in 1993 and particularly the factor that
22 the influence of parties, political parties, was forbidden?
23 A. Now, this is a very complex order. It deals with a large number
24 of areas. The order emphasizes or points out a problem, suggests a way
25 to resolve it, and it emphasizes also certain prohibitions. In this
1 specific case, we see a very professional attitude, a very professional
2 position that the army should remain outside the influence of political
3 parties and depoliticised.
4 Q. Could you define in the military terminology what a decision is?
5 A. In the most simplest terms, according to a military definition, a
6 decision is a determination how to perform a certain assignment or a
8 Q. What is the difference between a decision and an order?
9 A. An order is an element of command, and command is the skill to
10 implement these decisions. So this decision is a determination setting a
11 goal, whereas an order is an element of command describing how to reach
12 that goal.
13 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] May we now come back to your
14 report, so Exhibit 5D759 on page 39 in B/C/S, 48 in English.
15 Q. Now, in this paragraph, could you please show the bottom part,
16 paragraph 107. In paragraph 107, you mention three methods by which the
17 work is done: the full method, the abridged method, and the
18 decision-making without consultations.
19 First of all, can you please say what level of command applied or
20 enforced the full method?
21 A. All methods of work relate to the tactical command and upwards,
22 from the regiment and brigade up to the Main Staff of the VRS.
23 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can we now see the following page
24 of the report.
25 Q. And I would like to ask you to briefly write or describe the full
1 method of working.
2 A. Here, we see the process of work of the command, and one of its
3 characteristics is that it has many points of contact with other
4 commands, so the procedure doesn't differ very much. The differences are
5 more linguistic than anything else. Here, we see the complete method of
6 work. We see it consists of 13 steps. It has to be followed strictly,
7 and these 13 steps ensure that all the organs of the command from
8 beginning to end are involved in decision-making. And each, according to
9 its competences, propose the best possible solutions. This method of
10 work is always applied when the time allows, and every command strives to
11 ensure there is sufficient time to go through the entire process and to
12 allow enough time to subordinate commands to also apply this method of
13 work. This method of work is also applied in issuing documents of the
14 highest order, such as orders to operative units.
15 The abridged method is used when there is limited time, and you
16 can see according to this schematic that the abridged method contains
17 four steps less. Practically, all organs of the command are also
18 involved in the process of decision-making, but the decision-making
19 process itself is abbreviated.
20 And the third method is the urgent method, when there is no time,
21 and it's practically decision-making on the move when decisions are made
22 very quickly and passed on very quickly to subordinate units.
23 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can the witness now be shown
24 Exhibit P699. This is the handbook for the work of command and staffs,
25 and I would like to have page 60 in B/C/S. I'm sorry about this delay.
1 I am looking for the number of page in the English version. Thank you.
2 Q. Can you please have a look at number 2 -- or, rather, the two
3 last paragraphs before sub-paragraph (b), before paragraph 104 and just
4 before sub-paragraph (b). This is the paragraph that starts by "Team
5 members..." and I would like to ask you to please read those two
6 paragraphs because the English version has translated two words in B/C/S
7 by the same word in English. So if you can read it now, maybe we can
8 avoid this mistake.
9 A. "Team members and other command organs with their assistant will
10 formulate segments of the command relating to their respective area and
11 shall submit them to the Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations.
12 "The Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations shall formulate the
13 final version of the organ" -- "of the order and will take care that it
14 is technically processed and forwarded to the subordinate."
15 I would just like to add that for technical reasons only, the
16 term "training" has been omitted, but that happens often.
17 Q. Apparently, we still have the translation of two words that have
18 a different meaning in B/C/S.
19 Well, first of all, I would like to ask you to tell us what is
20 the difference between the formulation in the first paragraph, "to
21 formulate," and "to put in form," which is what's in the second
23 A. At a meeting, a civilian meeting, I provided an explanation that
24 sealed to be helpful to them, and I am going to do it again. The
25 Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations and Training provides a whole as
1 if he were using Lego cubes, but he doesn't provide the content of the
2 cubes. The Chief of Staff will provide the whole from these elements,
3 whereas the elements themselves and the content will be decided by the
4 competent officers from respective commands.
5 Q. Now, concretely when one looks at these two paragraphs, what is
6 the tasks of the members of the team and that of the other organs of the
7 command structure?
8 A. The task of team members and other organs of the command is by
9 abiding by the commander's proposals to prepare decisions from their
10 respective areas, and once they have drafted these decisions, they should
11 pass them on to the Assistant Chief of Staff for Operations and Training.
12 Q. What, then, is the task of the person, the officer, in charge of
13 operations and training?
14 A. Once he receives all these elements, he puts them in the order as
15 defined by this rule in order to arrive at a whole document, and then he
16 hands over the document to the Chief of Staff.
17 Q. I think you have already talked about this, but, you know, to be
18 even more clear, can you please be very clear, what is the influence of
19 the officer in charge of operational affairs and training on the content
20 of a document, for instance, a directive or an order?
21 A. No influence. He has no influence on the content, but on the
22 form the influence was strong.
23 Q. And what do you have in mind when you talk about the form? Can
24 you explain what it means in an order or in a directive?
25 A. Speaking of a whole of a document implies that this directive or
1 an order contains all the required elements, that they are put in the
2 proper order and that these elements are in a sequence that will be
3 efficient for the subordinate command. This sequence is prescribed,
4 among other things, by this Manual for the Work of Commands and Staffs.
5 Q. Now, in this hand-book, in the paragraph you have read, this
6 paragraph mentions the orders. What other military documents were also
7 issued according to this process?
8 A. This procedure allows a whole array of procedures to be
9 implemented. A directive can be drafted by applying this procedure by
10 the Main
11 command can draft operational orders. And then based on the operational
12 orders, brigade commands or regiment commands can -- which are tactical
13 commands can draw up their own orders, and this is how we go down the
14 whole chain of command.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can we now see page 24 in B/C/S of
16 this same exhibit, this same hand-book, page 22 of the English version.
17 Q. Can you please tell us, and I think it's in paragraph 33 of this
18 handbook, what are the elements which determine the choice of method of
19 work to be used?
20 A. You can see here a detailed explanation of what I mentioned
21 several times. The selection of a particular method of work is done at
22 the -- based on the level of command, on the qualification of command,
23 the structure and the quality of officers, and many other elements.
24 However, one of the crucial parameters is the time-frame or the available
25 time. The division of labour here is slightly more flexible in this
1 document because this document is intended, also, for regiments, and
2 regiments are on a much lower tactical level than the Main Staff;
3 therefore, they require more details than the Main Staff of the VRS would
5 Q. Can you please tell us what the difference is between a directive
6 and an order?
7 A. The difference between a directive and an order is primarily at
8 the level where they are issued. There are two level of issuance for a
9 directive, and I have provided a charter of that in my expertise. One
10 level is the state level when you have a directive issued by the
11 commander-in-chief, and the second level is strategic level when a
12 strategic amount issues a directive. In terms of its content, a
13 directive is not intended strictly to contain all the elements. It is
14 something to give a steering or a direction, and it set up objectives to
15 be achieved by the subordinate command. It is binding at the same time,
16 but it is also a direction.
17 An order, on the other hand, is an executive document which
18 contains strictly defined decision, time, participants, and very often a
19 decision can be divided into stages. In that manner, it narrows the
20 space for the subordinate in terms of the institution; that is to say, it
21 restricts his space for his imagination by putting him into a precise
22 time-frame and space-frame.
23 Q. Now, in your report you have analysed the Directive number 7, for
24 the report -- this is Exhibit P5, but I don't need it right now. I would
25 only like to ask you about this directive. On the basis of this
1 directive and of documents which you have consulted, were you able to
2 draw conclusions about the method which was used when those directives
3 were elaborated?
4 A. The fact that a few numbers that were directives made it
5 necessary for one to draw a highly likely conclusion. Therefore, my
6 conclusion was that, for instance, a directive is never drafted by
7 applying an abridged method because this is a long-term document without
8 any time limits. It provides direction and steering, and I don't know
9 and I don't believe that there is any directive done by either an
10 abridged method or without consultations in history ever.
11 Secondly, the source of this directive and the idea underlying it
12 dates back to the analysis of combat readiness in 1994. The fact that
13 the draft of this document was most probably completed on the 7th or
14 8th -- or 8th March, and the fact that was that it was most probably
15 approved on the 16th and the 17th of March indicates that the only
16 possible way that was applied in preparing this directive was the full
18 Q. Just before I move to the work on Directive number 7, I would
19 like to show Exhibit 5D999.
20 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] This is Directive Number 9.
21 Q. You said that you did not know the situation of the case in which
22 a directive was put together on the abridged method of work, on the basis
23 of that method. Now, the officer who worked on this directive told us
24 here in court that this specific directive was devised on the basis of
25 the abridged method. Can you say something about this, please?
1 A. As far as I can see, this directive was prepared at the forward
2 command post where at the time there were a sufficient number of officers
3 for a valid decision to be taken required for such a directive. Whether
4 all these officers were the first- or second-ranking people in their
5 respective areas, I don't know, but I wouldn't agree that this was done
6 by applying an abridged method or that it was done without consultation.
7 One might conclude that at the forward command post there were enough
8 competent officers from the command staff and some organs that they
9 needed for taking this decision.
10 Probably, what they didn't consider to be relevant, this
11 directive seems to be shorter than the other ones. As far as I can
12 remember, it is said that some of the elements will be taken over from
13 the previous directive, and I see that as a proof that actually a full
14 method of work was applied rather than the abridged method.
15 Q. And about the officer in charge of operations who was not
16 involved in the drawing up of this directive, but in theory, what is the
17 role of the officer in charge of operational affairs and training in --
18 when an abridged method is used? Does he have a different role from his
19 role if the full method is to be applied?
20 A. No, his task is always the same. His task is to prepare the
21 directive pursuant to the commander's decision.
22 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] May we now come back to your
23 report. This is Exhibit 5D759, on page 41 in B/C/S and 51 in English.
24 Q. In paragraph 109 -- well, you have already mentioned the analysis
25 of the combat readiness of 1994. In this paragraph, you have indicated
1 that the supreme commander ordered the preparation of the directive
2 during the analysis of combat readiness. How did you reach this
4 A. I reached this conclusion in two steps. The first step was when
5 I analysed how the analysis of combat readiness was organised and
6 implemented and what the corps commands had come up as suggestions and
7 what measures were taken by the staff command and what were the decision
8 of the state of the VRS, and the VRS one could have concluded that the
9 idea for Directive 7 was based on this analysis of combat readiness.
10 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] May we now see 5D767 -- sorry, 967.
11 This is the diary for the meeting about combat readiness for 1994 that
12 was held on 29th and 30th of January, 1995. And I'd like to show page 2
13 in B/C/S and page 3 in English.
14 Q. In this document, one sees that the president of the republic was
15 to make a presentation at 1550 [as interpreted] a.m. about the political
16 and military objectives for the future as well as the strategy about the
17 conduct of the war and peace negotiations. Was this presentation to have
18 a connection with directive -- the future Directive number 7?
19 A. Absolutely. This is a classic form of reporting about the combat
20 readiness. If you would look at all the former JNA armies, you would
21 basically find everything identical. Only the names would be different.
22 This is a classical approach that you have the commander-in-chief present
23 there and that he is formulating the future policies of negotiations and
24 prosecutions of war. And later on, we see the input of his associates
25 and other people who were present at this briefing.
1 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Just before we continue, one
2 correction of the transcript. On page 17, line 4, this is 1750 p.m.
3 Can we now move to page 4 in English, and in B/C/S we are still
4 on page number 2, at the very bottom of that page.
5 Q. At 2100, one sees that the main commander, the staff commander,
6 were to talk about the position -- the tasks of the Army of Republika
7 Srpska during the truce and the most important tasks in 1995. So there
8 was to be a discussion about that.
9 Now, was the future Directive number 7 to be somehow connected to
10 this part of the briefing and of the analysis?
11 A. Not necessarily. The conclusions and tasks relating to the units
12 of the VRS have most to do with it, but in this specific case I think
13 that these tasks were assigned on the 5th of February, 1995.
14 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can we now move to page 3 in B/C/S.
15 In English, we'll still be on page 4, at the bottom of page 4. So you
16 can see that at 2200 there was a closing speech by the commander, and
17 amongst other things he was to talk about the conclusions and short-term
18 tasks and most important tasks for the Army of Republika Srpska in 1995.
19 Q. What is normally the role or the objective for this part of the
21 A. Practically, this is the final act of the analysis in which the
22 commander of the VRS presents or, rather, accepts the evaluation of
23 combat readiness according to all relevant elements; and on the basis of
24 that, he imparts what he believes to be important and how he assesses
25 combat readiness. This was preceded by the assessments by corps
1 commanders that they should have provided them in time and on the basis
2 of this and as well on the conclusions that very often are added on the
3 spot during the meeting become part of this final act of the analysis of
4 combat readiness.
5 Q. And right after that at 2230, one can see that proposals and
6 conclusions and tasks for the Army of Republika Srpska in 1995 were to be
7 formulated. And according to this document, one can see that the head of
8 Administration in Charge of Operational Affairs and Training of the Main
9 Staff as well as the chief of the organs in charge of operations and
10 training of the units were entrusted with that formulation.
11 Can you please tell us what the role of these organs were in the
12 formulation of the proposals that are mentioned in this part?
13 A. Since the analysis of combat readiness implies that background
14 material has been received in time and evaluations had been provided
15 previously by subordinate commanders, practically all the organs
16 cooperate and write together and gather all the oral information
17 collected previously. Based on that, they write their conclusions and
18 proposals of tasks and present it -- present it here in a shortened form
19 -- [microphone not activated]
20 Q. Did the organs in charge of operational matters who did this work
21 were also in charge of formulating the contents of the proposals?
22 A. It was the speakers who presented the content of proposals. They
23 were in charge of formulating and sorting these proposals, and the
24 speakers were commanders, assistant commanders. There is a whole group
25 determined there.
1 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown page 5
2 in English, and for B/C/S it's still page 3. We can see at the bottom of
3 the page the name of Colonel Miletic, just at the bottom of the page.
4 Q. Did Colonel Miletic determine the content of specific
5 interventions indicated in this document?
6 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
7 MR. VANDERPUYE: Again, Mr. President, I don't know if we're
8 talking about something on a theoretical level or we're talking about
9 something that's peculiar to the facts of this case, and I would suggest
10 that if that's the nature of the question that it's inappropriate to put
11 to the expert unless there is some foundation for it. Otherwise, if it's
12 just talking about the signature on the document as a matter of form
13 rather than a matter of factual substance, then I think the question
14 would otherwise be appropriate. But I just wanted to clarify that and
15 make sure that it ...
16 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. Ms. Fauveau, do you wish to comment?
17 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Of course I am speaking about the
18 rules concerning the usual methods of work. I don't know about this
19 specific situation how General Miletic did it and had to do and how he
20 could do it.
21 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
22 MR. VANDERPUYE: Mr. President, the question was directed to the
23 specific -- the content of the specific interventions indicated in the
24 document, and unless this witness has some direct knowledge of the
25 circumstances concerning the contents of this document, the question
1 would be inappropriate and would call for speculation.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: She is going to reformulate --
3 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I will reformulate.
4 JUDGE AGIUS: Go ahead, because I think basically after having
5 heard him the second time, I think he is right.
6 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
7 Q. How is this sort of document normally elaborated?
8 A. Analysis of combat readiness is a normal action, normal procedure
9 defined by structure, and in terms of structure it would not be different
10 than any other army. It has its own elements of combat readiness; there
11 is a stipulated way of making proposals, of drawing conclusions, and
12 settling the matter. Every point in the analysis of combat readiness is
13 prescribed in advance, a skeleton already exists, and everybody just
14 makes specific proposals in their area.
15 Let's take as an example problems of financing -- planning,
16 development, and financing of the VRS in 1994. It would be the chief for
17 planning and development who would fill in this box, make this proposal.
18 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness now be shown
19 5D1206. This is an order from the Main Staff, 23 January 1995.
20 Just before I ask my question, could the witness be shown the
21 last page of the document. We can see here that this document bears the
22 name of the commander, General Mladic. I would like now to come back to
23 page 11 of this document. Page 1, maybe.
24 Q. The plan of the analysis for the combat readiness which we saw a
25 while ago and which bore the name of General Miletic, was it or should it
1 have been linked in any way to this order of General Mladic? Should it
2 have been connected?
3 A. We must decipher the methodology of maintaining the analysis of
4 combat readiness. There are several more elements here. The analysis of
5 combat readiness for a certain year is usually part of the annual plan as
6 well. As we can see, the order of the commander of the VRS invokes that
7 plan. This analysis is made according to a certain skeleton and
8 methodolgy. The commander defines the obligations of all the executive
9 components. When the commanders of subordinate units submit their own
10 results, a draft plan of implementation is created.
11 [Trial Chamber confers]
12 THE INTERPRETER: We haven't heard the President.
13 JUDGE AGIUS: [Microphone not activated] Sorry, I had the
14 microphone switched off. Go ahead, I think we have got everything now.
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Thank you. Once this draft plan of
16 the analysis of combat readiness is made - that's the plan we reviewed
17 previously - the draft is submitted to the commander who agrees on it,
18 gets the approval with the supreme commander because no plan must be
19 contrary to the decisions of the supreme commander. Then, it is returned
20 for final technical processing, and it awaits all the participants on the
21 table when they come for a final analysis.
22 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown page 3
23 in B/C/S of this decision. In English, it would be page 5. We have seen
24 that the chief of the organ in charge of education and administration had
25 a role in the preparation of this meeting for analysis of the combat
1 readiness of the Army of Republika Srpska.
2 Q. Did other organs of the command -- did they take part in the
3 preparation of this analysis?
4 A. If we know what the analysis of combat readiness consists of, if
5 we know that it comprises all the elements, all the same elements that
6 the command consists of, then we know that not only were they involved
7 other organs of the command, they actually proposed their own elements;
8 thus, Mr. Djukic of the logistics was the proponent for the security of
9 General Tolimir, and the chief of operations and training was the
10 proponent of passages dealing with operations and training.
11 Q. Could you please have a look at number 8, which is on the last
12 page, page 6 of the English text. According to this number 8, after --
13 at the end of the meeting, the commanders of units were to transmit to
14 the chief of administration in charge of operational questions and
15 instruction, education, the analysis prepared for combat preparedness
16 made in 1994. Which unit is mentioned here? Which units are we speaking
18 A. These are unit commanders directly subordinated to the commander
19 of the Army of Republika Srpska. It relates to the ground forces, the
20 ground corps, the airforce, regiments, and brigade, the school centre,
21 Rajko Balic, and other units. I'm not sure because I don't see the
22 mobilization trail. But those are the units that are directly
24 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown now
25 5D1207. This is an order from the Main Staff dated 25 January 1995 which
1 bears the name of General Tolimir.
2 Q. Could you please look at number 2 of this order --
3 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] -- page 2 for the English version.
4 Q. In this paragraph, the tasks of the assistant of the commander
5 for logistics was determined -- the tasks were determined. How does the
6 assistant of the commander for security, since this order has the name of
7 General Tolimir, could determine the tasks of the assistant commander for
8 logistics? How is it possible?
9 A. We know that the analysis of combat readiness is an activity
10 where all commanders on the operative and tactical levels attend. Even
11 heads of state often attend. That fact in itself indicates that it is a
12 very risky moment, something that could be lethal to the unit. In these
13 analyses, measures of security are much more stringent than in a regular
14 situation. This is the task of the chief of security. He insisted here
15 on stricter methods of security and proposed guard duty, which is not
16 strictly within his competence, but everybody understood that it was
17 necessary, and nobody minded that he overstepped his authority a little.
18 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
19 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President. We have a reference
20 in the transcript, I think it's at line 22, where the expert mentions the
21 chief of security. In the context of this order that's signed by General
22 Tolimir --
23 JUDGE AGIUS: I don't know --
24 MR. VANDERPUYE: -- I just want to clarify that we are talking
25 about assistant commander for intelligence and security as distinguished
1 from chief of security within the structure of the Main Staff, just so
2 that the record is --
3 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Also for the record, because he keeps
4 saying -- I mean, there is something which makes it obvious to me that
5 the page and lines that I have are not tallying with yours, for sure, but
6 in any case that will be checked later. What I have here is page 24,
7 line 4.
8 Otherwise, do you agree with -- not do you agree. Actually, I
9 think it's a valid point. If you could pursue it with the witness,
10 please. Thank you.
11 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I entirely agree on the function of
12 General Tolimir. I entirely agree with my colleague from the
14 JUDGE AGIUS: All right. Let's proceed then.
15 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
16 Q. Why did the meetings concerning readiness for combat, why were
17 they organised?
18 A. I said more than once, they were held in order to make a good
19 decision, and in order to successfully command, one must be
20 well-acquainted with the status and condition of your units, and you will
21 best be able to assess the situation of your units if you get the reports
22 on combat readiness. This is like an X-ray, and the analysis of the
23 combat readiness was that X-ray for the commander of the VRS, and with it
24 he knew what to do next. You will see that this is correct when you see
25 the document when he defined further tasks, after this analysis, and
1 decided that combat readiness should be raised to a higher level.
2 Q. Could you tell us during which period these meetings were
3 normally organised, these meetings concerning readiness for combat? What
4 was their frequency?
5 A. For the strategic and operative level, the analysis of combat
6 readiness is done once a year, normally at the end of the year for the
7 year past; and for lower levels, it's done more frequently.
8 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown 5D966.
9 This is an order from the Drina Corps dated 17 January 1995 concerning
10 the analysis of the combat readiness of the Drina Corps. Could you look
11 at number 5 in this order on page 2. In this paragraph number 5, you can
12 read first of all:
13 "[In English] All organs and sectors of the corps command will
14 prepare for the annual analysis according to their functions and present
15 for the purposes a joint analysis the necessary summaries and charts in
16 order to obtain a better picture of the situation in the corps in 1994.
17 "The corps command operations and training will be in charge of
18 preparing the analysis, and all questions should be addressed to them."
19 Q. [Interpretation] Could you explain, what was the role of the
20 organ in charge of operational and education for the preparation of
21 analysis, according to this order?
22 A. The role of the operations and training organ in command of the
23 Drina Corps, and here in paragraph 5, is defined exactly as I explained
24 the role of that organ and the level of the Main Staff of the Army of
25 Republika Srpska. I don't want to -- in fact, I will tell you about the
1 specific task that the commander issued, that everybody, according to
2 their function, prepare a report and schematic that is necessary to
3 evaluate the situation; and then, together with the Assistant Chief of
4 Staff for Operations and Training, he would define it and put it together
5 into a whole where he would determine the sequence, the terminology, the
6 time and place, et cetera.
7 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can we go back to page 1 of this
8 order. At number 2, you can see the elements of combat readiness. I
9 think there is a translation mistake concerning the third element, which
10 is the education, which has not been accurately translated into English.
11 Q. So could you read out to us in B/C/S the components for combat
13 A. [No interpretation]
14 JUDGE AGIUS: One moment. I've not received the --
15 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] The first element is control and
16 command. The first element of combat readiness is control and command;
17 the second element is moral guidance, religious, and legal affairs; the
18 third element of combat readiness is combat training and education; the
19 fourth element is mobilisation, or mobilisational, organisational,
20 financial, and personnel support and affairs; the next one is logistical
21 support; after that, intelligence and security support; and the last
22 element is administrative and office management.
23 We can conclude that this fourth element is mobilisational,
24 organisational, establishment, and staffing or personnel affairs.
25 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could the witness be shown 5D1394.
1 This is an analysis of combat readiness for the Drina Corps in 1994.
3 THE INTERPRETER: Microphone, please.
4 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation]
6 what we've seen in the Main Staff documents and according to your
7 experience, do the elements of this analysis, do they have to be
8 presented during the analysis of the combat readiness of the Army of the
9 Republika Srpska which was supposed to take place on the 29th and the
10 30th of January?
11 A. It is always precisely established by a methodolgy that
12 subordinate corps should submit their written analysis before the
13 analysis taken at the level of the Main Staff. Each organ reviews this
14 analysis within their respective purview, and the commander should also
15 present their own analysis. In this context, this should have preceded
16 the analysis carried out at the Main Staff of the VRS, and all the
17 officers in charge should be able to review this analysis.
18 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Could page 20 in B/C/S be shown,
19 please, and page 22 for the English text.
20 Q. So one sees at the bottom of the page what are the main
21 assignments in 1995.
22 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] And if we could show the very
23 bottom, please, just a little further down.
24 Q. According to assignment number 4, the corps command is to find a
25 way to completely close off the Srebrenica and Zepa enclaves. Who
1 ascertained that assignment for the Drina Corps in January 1995?
2 A. This task was signed to the Drina Corps in 1993, and it was a
3 continuous task, but it practically was never completed until the
4 separation of the enclave in July.
5 Q. And you know, just to elaborate a little bit on what you just
6 said --
7 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can the witness be shown Exhibit
8 5D988. This is the monthly plan for the Drina Corps for November 1994.
9 Under item 3, one sees that the complete close-off of the Srebrenica
10 enclave was one of the main assignment for the Drina Corps in November
12 Q. Is this in line with what you said before?
13 A. Absolutely. It appears in various forms. I am only surprised
14 how this could have been one of the main tasks for months and years
15 without it being completely finalised. They are speaking here of closing
16 off the Srebrenica enclave, which automatically involves the separation
17 of the enclave. This task is formulated in different ways, but the
18 basics and the fundamental and essential meaning was there, but it was
19 never completed and achieved.
20 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] May we now come back to Exhibit
21 5D1394, i.e., the analysis for combat readiness of the Drina Corps. I
22 would like to have page 21 in B/C/S, 23 in English, please.
23 Q. In the very last part of this document, the Drina Corps suggests
24 that the supreme commander be given to -- in the Main Staff find a
25 solution for the elimination of enclaves. Now, is such a proposal
1 normal -- such a proposition of a subordinate unit a regular or a normal
3 A. This proposal is an unusual one and out of the context. If
4 someone gives you an order to make a separation this year and then two
5 years later you come up with a proposal for elimination, this is out of a
6 military context.
7 Q. And do you see a link between this proposition and Directive
8 number 7?
9 A. I don't see any connection between the Directive 7/1 because this
10 one that refers to the enclaves is very precise and clear.
11 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye.
12 MR. VANDERPUYE: Thank you, Mr. President. I don't know if it
13 was a translation error, but the question was put specifically with
14 respect to Directive number 7 and the answer responds Directive 7/1. I
15 wonder if we could clarify that, please.
16 JUDGE AGIUS: I suppose that the witness must have heard the
17 question that it was related to Directive number 7. What I want to know
18 is whether in his reply, in his answer, he referred to Directive number 7
19 or to Directive number 7/1.
20 And you are the one who can tell us that, General.
21 THE WITNESS: [Interpretation] Both Directive number 7 and number
22 7/1 were precise and accurate.
23 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes, Mr. Vanderpuye. It doesn't answer your
25 MR. VANDERPUYE: It's not responsive to the question that was put
1 by my colleague, actually.
2 JUDGE AGIUS: Yes. I am going to leave it in your hands,
3 Ms. Fauveau, because I wouldn't like to interfere here.
4 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Can we limit ourselves to Directive
5 7. So I would like to ask the question again.
6 Q. What about the proposition of the Drina Corps? Could it have an
7 influence or a link with Directive number 7?
8 A. This proposal from the Drina Corps - actually, it's item number 1
9 - has no bearing on Directive number 7.
10 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] I would like to show you now
11 Exhibit 5D1208. This is an order from the Main Staff from 16th of
12 February, 1995, and I -- with the name of General Milovanovic.
13 Q. Can you please have a look at this order and tell us whether this
14 order is one way or another connected to the analysis about combat
15 readiness which was performed at the end of January?
16 A. Judging by the content, this has nothing to do with the analysis
17 of combat readiness conducted in that period. This is a daily order of a
18 completely different type where information about the enemy is required.
19 Q. Could this order have had a link with the preparation of
20 Directive number 7?
21 A. According to the contents, it is possible because they are
22 looking to see what the balance of forces is, which would serve as a
23 basis for proposing further activities.
24 MS. FAUVEAU: [Interpretation] Yes, Your Honour. Can we leave it
25 at that for today because I need to show an exhibit.
1 JUDGE AGIUS: That's why I intervened, in fact.
2 General, we are going to stop here. We will resume again
3 tomorrow morning, same advisory as yesterday. Please do not contact or
4 discuss this with anyone until you finish your testimony. We stand
5 adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9.00.
6 --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.44 p.m.
7 to be reconvened on Wednesday, the 14th day of
8 January, 2009, at 9.00 a.m.