Tribunal Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Page 17401

 1                           Thursday, 15 March 2012

 2                           [Defence Closing Statement]

 3                           [Open session]

 4                           --- Upon commencing at 9.02 a.m.

 5             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Registrar, kindly call the

 6     case.

 7             THE REGISTRAR:  Thank you and good morning, Your Honours.  This

 8     is case IT-03-67-T, the Prosecutor versus Vojislav Seselj.

 9             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Thank you, Registrar.

10             Today is the 15th of March, 2012.  Let me greet you, everybody in

11     the court, including the interpreters assisting us.  Good morning to the

12     OTP representatives.  And good morning to you, Mr. Seselj.  You may

13     proceed, you may continue with your closing arguments.

14             THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] In all those nebulous assertions

15     put forward by the Prosecution, there is one that is particularly

16     striking, and that is that beyond a reasonable doubt evidence was

17     provided to confirm that I am responsible for certain crimes - and I

18     repeat without a reasonable doubt.  Now, how is that possible?  First of

19     all, I was deprived of my right to self-representation.  I am deprived of

20     the right to present my case.  These are basic presumptions, and that is

21     the equality of arms that I should have with the Prosecution.  I never

22     asked for the equal account of money that the Prosecution have spent in

23     this case.

24             Just take a look at how many people are employed in the

25     Prosecution, people who were involved in this case.  We have had

Page 17402

 1     six Prosecutors presenting their closing arguments here.  Do you remember

 2     at all the Prosecution -- Prosecutors that appeared before?  I can't

 3     remember them.  One of them was Mrs. Retzlaff.  Then we had - what was

 4     her name? - and I published a book about her.  Now her name is eluding

 5     me.  Then we have Mundis and Dutertre.  It's impossible to remember all

 6     of them.

 7             Now they worked full time on this case, whereas I didn't have

 8     anyone who would be engaged full time on my case.  I had a few

 9     associates, or rather, quite a few of them, about 25, but they were able

10     to provide assistance as much as their regular commitments allow them.

11     And I'm happy with their work.  Thanks to their research work on the

12     ground, they facilitated my task in dealing with the false witnesses in

13     this courtroom.  Through their research efforts, they'd made it easier

14     for me to deal with the false expert witnesses for the Prosecution, but I

15     was not able to present my Defence case and the Trial Chamber ignored

16     that.

17             Mr. Antonetti, while he was a Pre-Trial Judge, advised me to

18     obtain a loan from a bank in Serbia and then this would be refunded after

19     the case had been closed.  Thankfully I did not resort to that because

20     all those people who would be my guarantors would have had to sell their

21     homes or maybe commit even suicide.  A lot of Serbs agreed to be

22     guarantors to people who are taking loans and afterwards there was only a

23     way out for them and that was suicide.  I read about that in the paper.

24     However, none of my associates was forced to commit suicide because I

25     didn't take this option into consideration.

Page 17403

 1             Then the Trial Chamber decided that my Defence can be financed

 2     but as of the date of delivering the ruling, that is to say, after the

 3     Prosecution case has been finished.  And then I would have received

 4     50 per cent of the costs for the Defence.  If it had been the usual

 5     50 per cent for third category of Defence from the beginning of my

 6     proceedings, from the day I came to The Hague, that would be substantial.

 7     But the Court does not want to effect any retroactive payments.  The

 8     argument against this is that I did not provide necessary documents.

 9     However, the Court has all the necessary documents.  I provided in hard

10     copy everything that my team was working on, including their studies,

11     their analysis, and their documents.  I had more than ten exhibits about

12     the possible forms of defence, but nobody understood it because there is

13     a special form of defence if somebody is basing their defence on alibi.

14     There's another form, on the other hand, which claims that the accused

15     was not capable of controlling his behaviour.

16             So there are many different forms of defence.  One of them is to

17     describe the general, historical circumstances.  With the assistance of

18     my associates within this specific form of defence and based on the best

19     available literature in the world, I dealt with the role of the Vatican

20     and the Roman Popes over the centuries of genocide committed against the

21     Serbian people.  I also dealt with my political speeches and interviews,

22     the extracts of which testify that I always called for the respect of

23     international laws on war, that I called upon the volunteers to deal with

24     their enemies only if they are armed, that if they have women, children,

25     or elderly surrendering to them to treat them properly and with respect

Page 17404

 1     for their dignity.

 2             Here the Prosecutor showed a segment of a video-clip, celebrating

 3     the departure of volunteers in front of the head office of the

 4     Serbian Radical Party.  But they only took out one excerpt from my speech

 5     and they intentionally removed part of my speech in which I say you

 6     should treat your enemy in a chivalrous manner, you have to respect

 7     international law when it comes to prisoners, you have to treat the

 8     civilians, women and civilians, in general, in a noble manner.  The

 9     Serbian press informed the public about this.  There are a lot of news

10     people in Serbia who still remember that speech, that particular part

11     that was taken out by the Prosecution.

12             I did indeed on many occasions issue warnings that the number of

13     victims, innocent victims, would perish if there were to be a war.  But

14     you don't have any evidence that I advocated the practice of killing or

15     mistreating civilians.  I didn't do that ever.  I never said they should

16     be killed, they should be beaten up, they should be maltreated, they

17     should be starved, they should be put in inhumane conditions.

18             The OTP called many false witnesses that would corroborate such

19     statement and you admitted those statements into evidence.  I'm sure you

20     realise that this is worthless.  Everything that the OTP has produced is

21     worthless and what was submitted to you by them.  Its only status is an

22     annex to the indictment.  Only the words spoken in this courtroom can

23     carry certain weight, and that requires a good cross-examination and it

24     should be properly refuted.

25             Now, the Prosecutor is manipulating the witnesses, and I'm going

Page 17405

 1     to illustrate this with a number of examples.

 2             Let's take Ljubisa Petkovic, he used to be the chief of the

 3     War Staff, the vice-president of the Serbian Radical Party for a period

 4     of time, after which he was expelled from the party in 1993 due to

 5     certain allegations.  Through their field office, the OTP asked him to

 6     come for an interview and they intimidated him.  They issued threats that

 7     he would be indicted before The Hague Tribunal.  He became so afraid that

 8     he agreed to a variety of things that were suggested to him to be

 9     included in his statement.  However, if you look at his statement as a

10     whole, you can't find any charges against me for the commission of

11     crimes, for the violation of international law, et cetera.  Instead, I

12     was described as an autocratic person, that I was the only decision-maker

13     in my party, et cetera.

14             Today, as well as in those times, there is not the a single party

15     that has a better democratic internal structure than the Serbian Radical

16     Party.  That is equally valid today as it was in the past.  We have the

17     best internal democratic structure and we have the best decision-making

18     process.  Being radicals means that we nip things in the bud.  We do not

19     follow some other ideologies.  We do not succumb to other influences, and

20     we are endlessly faithful to our people.  But there was no autocratic

21     behaviour in our party.

22             But you made Ljubisa confirm all of this.  Okay.  He did that.

23     Now what?  Are you expecting me to refute that in my Defence case?

24     Ljubisa Petkovic himself refuted that.  Everything you gave him to sign

25     and he did sign until the dead-line expired within which the OTP was

Page 17406

 1     entitled to issue a new indictment.  As soon as that dead-line passed,

 2     Ljubisa Petkovic refused to co-operate and obey you any longer.  He

 3     immediately got in touch with my associate and he gave them part of the

 4     recording of his statement given to the OTP in the interviews, and I

 5     published that in my book.

 6             But I realised that some things Ljubisa Petkovic had hidden from

 7     us too.  He altered his statement and offered to become a Defence

 8     witness.  He rejoined the Serbian Radical Party.  He took part in all

 9     party activities, et cetera.  And eventually he refused to appear here as

10     an OTP witness.  And then criminal proceedings were instituted against

11     him for contempt of court.  This made him afraid again.  He was assigned

12     Defence counsel from France of Serbian extraction and he was sentenced to

13     three months in prison.  He was on our ticket, but he wasn't an MP and he

14     didn't have a chance of becoming an MP because there are 250 on the list

15     but we managed to win 79 seats in the parliament.  However, the fact that

16     he was strong enough when he appeared here and that he did not recant on

17     his decision not to testify and he was threatened with seven years in

18     prison and eventually was sentenced to only three months; and all of

19     that, we thought that warrants something as a reward for him.

20             We had an MP called Dragan Tasic who has regretfully died in the

21     meantime.  He obtained his degree in Montpellier, he spoke fluent French,

22     and his assistance was invaluable to us.  And his seat was given to

23     Ljubisa Petkovic.

24             You were stunned.  You found it odd.  Why is that?

25     Ljubisa Petkovic was the first Serb who stood up against the intentions

Page 17407

 1     to be brought here as a false OTP witness here.  You saw him here.  He's

 2     a tiny man, but he survived.  He was frightened here.  He was frightened

 3     here in the courtroom, but subsequently he published a five-pages book

 4     about his experience in The Hague.  He could not withstand everything

 5     that Borisav Jovic was -- he was --

 6             THE INTERPRETER:  Interpreter's correction.

 7             THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] He was able to withstand what

 8     Borisav Jovic wasn't.  Borisav Jovic came to testify against

 9     Slobodan Milosevic.  Now, it beggars the question from the moral aspect

10     immediately.  Why did he agree to that?  Why didn't he kill himself?

11     Because any honourable person would have committed suicide rather than do

12     that.  He has as the former president of Yugoslavia and the alleged

13     member of the JCE comes here to testify against another member in the

14     JCE.

15             Now, let's take the example of Zoran Lilic, the FRY president.

16     He came to The Hague to testify against Slobodan Milosevic, whereas at

17     the time of the crimes attributed to Milosevic, Milosevic was not the

18     supreme commander of the army, Zoran Lilic was.  So on the one hand we

19     had immoral creatures who trampled all over their own honour and dignity;

20     and on the other hand, we had a small man, Ljubisa Petkovic, a man who

21     finished only a secondary school, a tradesman, who stood up to them.  And

22     that's why he had to be rewarded, certainly not because I minded his

23     testimony or his statement.

24             You admitted his statement into evidence, but it's worthless.

25     But he said that I was a bad person or an autocrat.  What could that

Page 17408

 1     possibly mean to your judgement or that the poor man he is, he said that

 2     I made all the decisions and he never had any say in anything.  I don't

 3     mind.  I was always responsible for my volunteers, and I never tried to

 4     deny that responsibility.  And even when volunteers were sent without my

 5     knowledge, I'm still responsible for them.  I stand behind everything

 6     that was done by the staff of the Serb Radical Party.

 7             You had other witnesses here.  I'm not going to mention their

 8     names.  I'm going to divide them into categories.  You've heard more

 9     witnesses that the Prosecution had tried to blackmail or threaten into

10     testifying without success.  They refused.  When I formally filed charges

11     against Carla del Ponte and her associates, you refused to deal with it.

12     You said you would postpone it until the end of this trial and then you

13     changed your mind and decided to appoint amicus curiae one and a half

14     years ago to deal with this.

15             And then, surprise, surprise, American people were named as

16     amicus curiae.  Why not from Bangladesh?  Why not somebody from Tanzania

17     or Nigeria, Niger, Argentina?  Why a US citizen?  Plus, an American who

18     would remain anonymous to the public.  Why does that person remain

19     anonymous to this day?  Is that person afraid of something?  What are

20     they afraid of?  Why is their name kept in secret?  Why are parts of his

21     or her report kept secret even from me?  I've shown my version here in

22     the courtroom with whole pages redacted.  Why?  Because that person did a

23     very dirty job, and they did not want anyone in the American legal

24     circles to know that they had done that.  They would have lost face.  But

25     you admitted their report, despite a huge number of shortcomings that the

Page 17409

 1     President, Judge Antonetti, highlighted in his dissenting opinion.

 2             I found some more flaws in that report, but all the serious flaws

 3     were highlighted in the dissenting opinion of Judge Antonetti.  He even

 4     found certain points that I could not have found myself, and then he

 5     himself voted to admit that report.  Why does it -- what does it mean

 6     now?  The Prosecution wants it in evidence.  I also want it in evidence,

 7     but I want the whole report unredacted.  Even if you choose to base your

 8     entire judgement on it, because that report also compromises the ICTY as

 9     a whole and the great powers standing behind it.

10             The second category of witnesses, the witnesses who caved in

11     before threats and pressures and agreed to testify falsely and blabbered

12     God knows what to OTP investigators, things that had no support in fact.

13     But most of all they just signed whatever the investigators suggested to

14     them, whatever was put to them, whatever the investigators thought would

15     fit with the indictment, on pain of being indicted themselves unless they

16     do so.  And as soon as the dead-line that the Security Council had given

17     you for bringing new indictments had passed, the greatest majority of

18     them turned against you and joined my team to tell the whole story, to

19     give new statements, and to offer themselves as Defence witnesses.  And

20     now the Prosecution in their final brief and in the closing arguments

21     we've heard here in the courtroom invokes the prior statements of those

22     witnesses without even mentioning the later ones.  So those statements

23     written by the Prosecution itself is truthful and reliable and what the

24     witnesses said later is not accurate.

25             Did I blackmail anyone?  Did I bribe anyone?  Did I give any

Page 17410

 1     incitements?  What kind?  What could I possibly offer?

 2             Not only in this case but in any other Serbian case in this

 3     Tribunal, it never happened that a Prosecution witness was killed,

 4     deprived of their property, physically attacked.  There is no such case.

 5     The regime in Belgrade can hardly wait to provide protection to anyone

 6     who would claim that they were threatened by me or my associates.  You

 7     heard one witness, Dejan Anastasijevic - and you abandoned him as a

 8     witness - who was prepared to claim that we had planted a hand-grenade on

 9     his window.  How could you possibly make that claim?  How would you

10     possibly place a hand-grenade on a window sill?  He said that my wife,

11     Jadranka, was involved in this.  That's the second category of witnesses.

12             The third category are bribed witnesses.  One specimen appeared

13     here in the courtroom, that's Goran Stoparic.  He was coached first by

14     Natasa Kandic.  She fraternized with him.  He lived in her apartment.  He

15     had a key to her apartment.  And he provided a false statement in which

16     he even said that at a rally in Sid 1991 - and by the way, that rally

17     never happened in Sid in 1991 - he said that I came to a football

18     stadium, awaited by huge crowds, and gave a Hitler salute.  That's

19     written in a statement signed by Goran Stoparic.  And one of my first

20     questions was about that Nazi salute.  And Goran Stoparic said here in

21     the courtroom that that was not true and he had no idea how that found

22     its way into his statement.  And he also denied many other things from

23     his statement.  He only stuck to his lies about the military organisation

24     of Chetniks in Serbia, in companies, platoons, other military units,

25     although all of Serbia knows it's a lie.  But he was useful because he

Page 17411

 1     helped me clear up certain events in Herzegovina and some events in

 2     Vukovar, et cetera.

 3             But never mind.  If this were a real court, the Trial Chamber

 4     would have immediately decided to prosecute members of the OTP who had

 5     admitted this statement of Goran Stoparic, claiming that I had given a

 6     Nazi salute to a crowd at a rally in Sid.  Goran Stoparic cashed in on

 7     his services to the Tribunal in a big way.  He testified in the Milosevic

 8     case.  He got residence in a Western country.  He received a large amount

 9     of money to start a private business.  And by selling his soul to the

10     devil, he provided very well financially for himself.  There are many

11     other similar cases.

12             Remember we had a report from the Victims and Witnesses Unit

13     after the first day of Goran Stoparic's testimony that Natasa Kandic had

14     made a telephone call to him, making certain suggestions that were not

15     explicitly described but they were clear.  Your own service informed us

16     of this.  Was anyone held responsible?  No.

17             Take Witness 026.  He also agreed to sell his soul to the devil.

18     He testified falsely in the Slobodan Milosevic case.  And while waiting

19     to testify, he spent several months here in The Hague.  And he was very

20     capricious in his requests.  He had over 50 surgeries, dental, cosmetic,

21     you name it, including several sessions of acupuncture, and all this was

22     paid for by the ICTY.  Anything he could possibly think of, change all of

23     his teeth, treat all his conditions, all his requests were accommodated

24     along with all his whims.  And he eventually received residence together

25     with his wife in his -- in a Western country.

Page 17412

 1             But eventually he ended up not so happy.  They cut down on his

 2     benefits and they did not treat him as well as they did Goran Stoparic.

 3     So unhappy as he was, he picked up his luggage and returned to Serbia,

 4     together with his wife.  And he left that Western country in secret.  And

 5     because you cheated him, revolted, he came to my legal Defence team.

 6             His statement claimed, among other things, that I had blown up

 7     the Roman Catholic cathedral in Subotica, as if cathedrals were

 8     spaceships that could be easily launched into space.  And the Prosecution

 9     insists on that without checking the facts.  Whatever the witness says is

10     immediately put in the statement and that's it.  What Prosecution office

11     in the world proceeds in that way, without checking?  That never

12     happened.

13             There was an incident involving an explosive device that was not

14     so powerful at the entrance of that cathedral, but the police cleared

15     that up, and it was, as it turns out, some sect that did it.  But in his

16     closing argument, the Prosecutor says the witness was talking about a

17     meeting or a rally in Srem in 1991 involving the expulsion of Croats.

18     And the Prosecution treats that as proof.  They treat the entire

19     statement of that witness as proof.  And you helped them, Judges, because

20     you admitted it into evidence.

21             In the early days you tried to admit into evidence only relevant

22     documents, and you even refused some of mine although they were perfectly

23     relevant, but later on you allowed the Prosecution to bulldoze heaps of

24     documents into evidence.  You allowed that in 2010 and 2011.  You didn't

25     really look at those documents before admitting them and you didn't allow

Page 17413

 1     me to give my opinion on them in the courtroom.  You wanted me to make

 2     submissions in writing; I'm certainly not going to do that.  I want to

 3     see you writing your judgement based on those statements.  I want to see

 4     you writing your judgement based on the witnesses who recanted.

 5             And there were also witnesses - and that's the fourth

 6     category - whom the Prosecution promised everything but they eventually

 7     got nothing.  They were not able to move to a third country with their

 8     families or get any riches.  There was one witness who kept bargaining

 9     with the OTP until the second he entered the courtroom.  And the OTP

10     eventually gave up on him because there were heaps of evidence that all

11     of his testimony was entirely false, that he had told them fairy-tales.

12     There was one witness, a Muslim from the area of Zvornik, whom the OTP

13     gave up on themselves of their own accord and they said they would never

14     even refer to his statements.  Even the Prosecution realised how

15     compromised he was.  That was the show put on by the Prosecution here and

16     it was the Trial Chamber who allowed all of that to happen.

17             We have a lot of false witnesses, Muslims and Croats.  We've had

18     documents here in the courtroom that I presented, original documents from

19     Croatia that I obtained from the OTP sources, and they bear the OTP

20     markings.  And they clearly show that the Croatian security services

21     prepared Croatian witnesses who testified against the Serbs here at

22     The Hague Tribunal.  They also prepared the witnesses that were to appear

23     in my case or in the case Milosevic or the Vukovar trio.  In the Mrksic

24     et al. proceedings, there was a discussion about such witnesses based on

25     the document that I'm just referring to.

Page 17414

 1             We've had a lot of evidence showing that the AID prepared Muslim

 2     witnesses who was supposed to testify in my trial and in other trials

 3     against the Serbs here.  How come there are so many differences between

 4     the prior statements of the witnesses and those that they provided many

 5     years later?  In the original witnesses [as interpreted] there is nothing

 6     about Seselj, Seseljevci, the SRS, and so on and so forth.  And then,

 7     ten years later, out of the blue, they do appear in the statements

 8     compiled by the OTP itself.  It is enough for the OTP to tell the

 9     witnesses who were on the other side what to tell and they become

10     co-operative and they start telling their tale.

11             You had a witness here, Dabic, who provided a false statement to

12     the OTP and then he turned to the Defence, because he was hoping that he

13     would be rewarded by the Defence by changing his statement and stating

14     something totally different.  He was not rewarded.  And then he got lost.

15     When he came to the courtroom he said that he had been beaten two or

16     three days before he appeared in the courtroom and that he perceived that

17     as pressure put on him.  It turned out eventually that he was cleaning

18     snow in front of his house, he slipped, he fell, and he injured himself.

19     When he was in The Hague he made telephone calls to people and instructed

20     them to call him and threaten him or tell him that somebody was

21     threatening him, and this would have served as proof that he was being

22     threatened and that's how he was going to elicit something from the OTP,

23     like accommodation or residency in a foreign state.

24             When I examined him here in the courtroom, he said he didn't know

25     anything, he didn't see anything.  His statement was basically a hearsay

Page 17415

 1     of the things that he heard from other people.

 2             And those are the witnesses that you presented before this

 3     Trial Chamber.  These are the witnesses that you based your indictment

 4     on, the trial, your final brief, and your closing arguments.  Your

 5     closing arguments were full of preliminary statements by false witnesses.

 6     You behave as if those witnesses have never recanted, have never denied

 7     their own words, or have been completely demasked here in the courtroom.

 8     You behave as if there had never been any cross-examination.  A

 9     Prosecution -- a Prosecutor should not behave in that way in the sphere

10     of international justice.  By definition, a Prosecutor is a servant of

11     international justice and his goal is to prove the truth and not to try

12     and prove the Prosecution thesis by hook or by crook.

13             The Prosecution is not deemed to be successful if his thesis are

14     accepted at the expense of the truth of the matter and if a judgement is

15     passed based on false arguments.  This cannot be seen as a success of

16     international justice or the Prosecutor.  The Prosecutor has to know that

17     he is successful only if he -- if the truth is proven beyond reasonable

18     doubt.

19             Mr. Marcussen and his team simply do not understand that.  They

20     behave like mercenaries who were waging war in Africa.  They were given a

21     task and they never asked themselves whether they are on the right side.

22     They behave like pit bull terriers and they run towards their target when

23     they smell blood and they never stop to think.  And the Prosecutor, not

24     only here but also in the other trials, the Prosecutors with highly

25     developed sense of moral and honesty, a Prosecutor who will position

Page 17416

 1     things from the aspect of interests of international justice should

 2     behave like that.  And they should say, "My goal is to arrive at the

 3     truth, and when we do arrive at the truth we will see what the

 4     consequences of the truth are."

 5             Ha.  I find Mr. Marcussen the funniest of them all.  You will

 6     remember a false witness, a Muslim who hailed from the area of Zvornik,

 7     who claimed that in March 1992 I held a rally in Mali Zvornik, and that

 8     rally was an anti-Muslim rally, that I gave a statement to the effect

 9     that Muslims were pagans and so on and so forth.  And that we would expel

10     them all the way to Anatolia.  And he also stated that at the culture

11     hall, after the rally, there was a conflict between us and the Muslims

12     who were demonstrating in front of the culture hall.

13             And what happened?  What transpired?  It transpired that that

14     rally had taken place two years before at the beginning of August 1990.

15     It turned out that in the newspaper "Velika Srbija" we published all of

16     the speeches that were delivered at the rally as well as the questions

17     from the audience.  It turned out that the crowd did attack us when we

18     left the hall, that we were stoned, that two people from our party were

19     injured as a result of the stoning, and that our lads from our security

20     got hold of some sticks and dispelled the crowd.  That was in 1990.

21             The Trial Chamber gave a task to Mr. Marcussen:  To examine that

22     whole thing based on the newspaper clippings and other reports, to find

23     out whether that event did take place in 1992 and how it happened.  Here

24     in the courtroom Mr. Marcussen submitted his report and said that there

25     was no trace of any such event.

Page 17417

 1             There is a report of the security service and that report was

 2     provided about the border area.  According to that state -- that report,

 3     I appeared in Mali Zvornik on the way to Ljubovija and Bajina Basta, that

 4     I was met by two or three men from our local regional board, and after a

 5     short conversation with them I proceeded.  And what about the rally?

 6     There was no rally.  There could not have been two rallies with the same

 7     scenario according to which there was a crowd waiting for us, a crowd

 8     that attacked us and was dispelled by us.  And now a wonder of all

 9     wonders happened next.  Mr. Marcussen insisted on the veracity of that

10     witness, and I crushed that witness's testimony on some other details

11     after that.

12             In responding to my submission pursuant to Rule 98 bis,

13     Mr. Marcussen never again mentioned that rally.  However, another wonder

14     happened, the Trial Chamber mentions it -- a majority of the

15     Trial Chamber.  You wrote your decision as if the meeting had really

16     happened in March 1992, as if this had been proven.  How can reasonable

17     Judges arrive at such a conclusion?  This is beyond any reason.

18             Let's put aside the fact that some other thesis pursuant to your

19     decision, pursuant to Rule 98 bis are also unreasonable.  Obviously if

20     this is the kind of decision that you make pursuant to Rule 98 bis, I'm

21     sure your judgement cannot be any more reasonable.  I want to leave

22     everything to the judgement of history, and history will be the judge of

23     all of us, you and me.  I want to bring this to an end before this

24     Tribunal.

25             The OTP and their false witnesses have not achieved much, have

Page 17418

 1     not proven my guilt and my responsibility.  The OTP has only contributed

 2     with their false witnesses to the crumbling of the legal, political, and

 3     moral integrity of The Hague Tribunal.  This trial differs from any other

 4     trials before this Tribunal for the very fact that the manipulation of

 5     false witnesses has come to the fore in this trial.

 6             In the other trials that I watched from time to time, I observed

 7     Defence lawyers standing up, introducing themselves to the false

 8     witnesses, grovelling up to them, instead of crushing them in the

 9     courtroom so that they really wouldn't know whether they were coming or

10     going.  We had some false OTP witnesses here who didn't know what had hit

11     them, who didn't know how to leave the courtroom because they didn't know

12     where the door was after I crushed their testimony.

13             The method that the OTP used is absolutely forbidden in both

14     continental as well as Anglo-Saxon laws.  My method is absolutely

15     allowed.  You even restricted me in those terms.  A cross-examination is

16     usually much more merciless than what I did here.  You kept on

17     interrupting me.  You protected false witnesses.  You justified them.

18     You would give them breaks whenever they wanted to have breaks and so on

19     and so forth.

20             And now we come to a category of false witnesses who are known as

21     insiders.

22             The biggest traitor and the false witness par excellence was

23     Biljana Plavsic.  Biljana Plavsic was first supposed to testify in my

24     trial, but then the OTP gave up on her.  The OTP has a document that

25     Mr. Marcussen or somebody from his team mentioned in their closing

Page 17419

 1     argument, to the effect that Biljana Plavsic invited Arkan, Mirko Jovic

 2     and myself to send volunteers to Republika Srpska.  It is a letter, a

 3     letter that I did receive but never replied to it.  We, the

 4     Serbian Radicals, never sent our volunteers anywhere upon an invitation

 5     by Biljana Plavsic.  I never had a good opinion about Biljana Plavsic.  I

 6     did meet her several times, I chatted with her, but in revolt I would

 7     turn down her nebulous conclusions, hypothesis, assumptions, claims, and

 8     so on and so forth.  She was the one who said that Muslims were

 9     genetically impaired, and I was forever regretting the fact that the

10     unfortunate destiny separated us along the religious lines and separated

11     us into Catholics, Muslims, and Orthodox.

12             In 1996 I was brought to the tribunal in the morning together

13     with Mr. Karadzic, and I reminded Mr. Radovan Karadzic in that vehicle

14     that in 1996, I tried to convince him -- and I spent the whole day trying

15     to convince him in his office near Pale not to put up Biljana Plavsic as

16     a candidate for the president of Republika Srpska.  When he had to

17     withdraw his party -- did put up her candidacy.  I told him that she was

18     not normal, that she was not reliable, that she could not be trusted, and

19     he thought that Biljana Plavsic was the most extreme, the most exposed in

20     the conflict against Milosevic and would be the best person for the job.

21     A lunatic can never be reliable, and it was proven very quickly.

22             She received people from America, Milos Prica, Ana Mitrovic, and

23     some others.  How do I know that?  That Milos Prica was somebody that

24     Djujic wanted to plant on me first as early as 1991.  And that

25     Milos Prica in a conversation with me immediately started talking about

Page 17420

 1     people walking out, about using force in order to overthrow Milosevic's

 2     regime.  There was shooting all of Krajina and Bosnia and he wanted to

 3     shed blood in Belgrade.  I chased him out of my office and never got in

 4     touch with him again.  And then they sent him to Biljana Plavsic, and he

 5     took the matters in his own hands.  She [as interpreted] uses Biljana

 6     Plavsic as his instruments in causing a putsch in Republika Srpska, to

 7     abolish the legal instruments of power, and Biljana Plavsic got some

 8     support, particularly from Western powers, and succeeded in her attempt.

 9             At the next elections, Biljana Plavsic was defeated by a Radical.

10     Once her dirty job was done, Biljana Plavsic was indicted by

11     The Hague Tribunal.  She arrived here, the so-called Serbian empress, a

12     woman who encouraged the combatants of Republika Srpska.  She was the

13     most extreme person of all of them, and plea bargained with the OTP.  She

14     didn't like the conditions in the prison.  She pleads guilty for

15     Prosecution -- persecution and decides to testify against the other

16     accused.

17             Biljana Plavsic was an extremist, even too big an extremist for

18     my own taste, although some people think that I am very extreme.  I

19     myself do not consider myself very extreme.  Biljana Plavsic as an

20     ultimate extremist testified against a person such as Momcilo Krajisnik,

21     who was always in favour of compromises, negotiations.  He was a very --

22     he was a pacifist.  They also brought her to testify against Milosevic.

23     She came to The Hague but then the OTP gave up on her testimony,

24     believing that it would be counter-productive, and they also gave up on

25     her testimony in my case.

Page 17421

 1             So she is even worse than Borisav Jovic and Zoran Ilic.

 2             Now, the next example is Milan Babic, the first president of the

 3     Republic of Serbian Krajina.  First he was engaged by the OTP to appear

 4     as a Prosecution witness in the Milosevic case, but the Prosecution put

 5     him before a dilemma:  Either you testify against Slobodan Milosevic or

 6     you would be indicted yourself.  He was a person of weak character and

 7     thereby he accepted to testify against Milosevic.  However, having

 8     completed this dirty job and finished his testimony, he was tricked by

 9     the OTP, who nevertheless issued an indictment against him.  Then new

10     envoys was sent to him with an offer to enter into a plea agreement and

11     he did so.  He admitted his participation in the JCE in persecution, and

12     in return the OTP agreed to sentence him to up to 11 years.  However, he

13     was sentenced by the Trial Chamber to 13 years in prison, although the

14     OTP was -- promised him that his family would be relocated to a Western

15     country where he would serve his prison sentence.  His family was indeed

16     relocated there, but they were put under house arrest.  His wife had

17     enough of it and she asked that she and their son and daughter be

18     returned to Serbia.

19             Now, Babic is burdened with new obligations to testify against

20     Krajisnik, Milan Martic, Franko Stanisic and Simatovic, and against me.

21     Maybe he would have been called as a witness against Milan Martic.

22     During the Martic case, Milan Babic committed suicide.  Now, what does

23     that mean?  Did the OTP perchance corroborate the veracity of his

24     testimony?  Does that corroborate the argument of the OTP or does it

25     undermine them?  I value and esteem Milan Babic much more than

Page 17422

 1     Biljana Plavsic because at one point in time after being morally

 2     disqualified - to which he himself agreed - he had enough strength to

 3     commit suicide.

 4             The plan was to have Milan Babic appearing as a witness in this

 5     case as well; however, since he committed suicide much earlier at the

 6     time when I didn't even know that he would appear here, the OTP tried to

 7     have his former statement and a huge pile of documents admitted into

 8     evidence.  However, the Judges refused that because there was no legal

 9     foundation for those documents to be admitted into evidence.  And then,

10     when the OTP submitted their third or fourth motion in 2010 or 2011, you

11     eventually agreed to have it admitted into evidence after you had been

12     inundated with such requests from the OTP and you didn't make any

13     selection whatsoever.

14             Now, why is this relevant?  You have a man who, in despair and as

15     a token of his protest against the Tribunal, takes his own life.  Let us

16     not talk about the issue of the commission headed by Kevin Parker who was

17     appointed to investigate the circumstances of this suicide, and they

18     submitted a false report because the commission told the public that

19     Milan Babic never left a suicide note.  But from my confidential

20     sources - and I'm not going to tell you whether it was the OTP or the

21     Registry - I heard that there was a suicide note after all.  And I filed

22     a submission with the President of the Court and I told my associates to

23     impart on the public that there was a suicide note.  And after that,

24     there was no way out, other than to admit that there indeed was a suicide

25     note.

Page 17423

 1             Now, I don't know whether it was publicised because this really

 2     is beyond my capabilities to find out.

 3             Kevin Parker also led the commission establishing the

 4     circumstances of the death of Slobodan Milosevic and produced a false

 5     report as well.  Mr. Milosevic complained of having in his blood

 6     antibiotics that are used for leprosy and other diseases but which cause

 7     the effect of increasing blood pressure.  He submitted this letter to the

 8     Russian foreign ministry through the Russian ambassador.  It turned out

 9     that it was Milosevic himself who put himself in such a position to die

10     so suddenly, whereas in fact Milosevic was killed under secretive

11     circumstances, at least by being denied proper and adequate medical

12     treatment.  Because for days he had been complaining in the courtroom

13     that he was not feeling well, that his head is heavy as something

14     weighing 2 tonnes, but it was disregarded.  The Trial Chamber presided by

15     Judge Robinson ignored that, and there was also Mr. Kwon and Iain Bonomy

16     there.

17             Now these are the methods that demonstrate how The Hague Tribunal

18     operates, and I am wrestling with this kind of might.

19             A third characteristic example of a false witness was

20     Miroslav Deronjic.  The first year when I came to The Hague we were on

21     the same floor, we socialised, he was a professor of literature, he was

22     an educated man.  He described to me how he was arrested.  First,

23     representatives of The Hague Tribunal asked him to be interviewed several

24     times.  He responded.  It was inferred that he might be indicted, but he

25     said, "If you do that, if you indict me, I am ready to come straight

Page 17424

 1     away."  However, once the indictment was issued, he was arrested by SFOR

 2     who severely beat him and tortured him during the course of arrest by

 3     submerging him into a barrel full of water.  And all of that I heard from

 4     Miroslav Deronjic.  On one occasion I tried to speak about all of this,

 5     but the Pre-Trial Judge switched off my microphone.  He didn't allow me

 6     to do that.

 7             Miroslav Deronjic claimed not to have been involved in any crimes

 8     relating to Srebrenica and that is the position that he held, but then he

 9     entered into -- Momir Nikolic entered into a plea agreement, a security

10     officer from the Bratunac Brigade.  In his statement he mentioned that

11     Deronjic had been at a meeting where the execution of prisoners was

12     agreed.  Although Nikolic was not there but the door was ajar and he was

13     able to hear that.  Just like with this unfortunate man who said that by

14     standing at a door which was ajar, he heard me in Vukovar talking with

15     the guards officers.  And Momir Nikolic, having signed this, there was no

16     defence against that.  That was the first piece of evidence against

17     Deronjic, and then the envoys were sent to offer him a plea agreement.

18             Both in his case and the case of Milan Babic, Vera Petrovic

19     played a major role.  She's an official psychiatrist of the Tribunal.

20     She spent days and days with them and by applying her methods made it

21     easier for them to accept a plea bargain.  Then Deronjic started making

22     up stories against everyone.  Members and volunteers of the SRS were

23     never in Bratunac, but he nevertheless claimed the opposite, that they

24     were in Bratunac.  First he was referring to White Eagles, then

25     volunteers, and God knows what else.  You admitted his evidence, and

Page 17425

 1     since Bratunac does not feature in my indictment I don't have any problem

 2     with that.  This only demonstrates how the Tribunal operates.

 3             We didn't have volunteers in Srebrenica in 1992.  The Serbs

 4     liberated Srebrenica in 1992 and the Muslim forces were pushed away

 5     towards Konjic and the surrounding forests.  Then Goran Zekic, the local

 6     Serb leader, was killed.  There were rumours that Miroslav Deronjic was

 7     involved in his murder.  And the Serb line front became -- began caving

 8     in, and eventually the Muslims were able of occupying Srebrenica which

 9     they held up until 1995, mainly with the help of the international

10     community.  So one moment and one event that took place in 1991 was

11     crucial for the outcome which is that the Serbs lost Srebrenica.

12             There are a number of other false witnesses that you are

13     referring to, and I'm talking about the deceased people like Zoran Tot.

14     I hope that there is no deceased peoples on the list of the protected

15     witnesses, but nevertheless I'm going to mention these two names,

16     Zoran Tot and Mr. Todorovic.

17             Now, how can that be relevant to anyone?  One of those protected

18     witnesses claim that in 1992 I was in Ilijas and Vogosca, but the truth

19     is that I never visited those places prior to 1994.  Those who died

20     before they testified, they did not testify due to your fault because my

21     trial was delayed.  Had my trial started a year after my arrival, because

22     it was Carla del Ponte who said in Belgrade in February 2003 that

23     everything was ready for the trial to start.  When I submitted a motion

24     in 1994 [as interpreted] to be released from detention, the most

25     significant response from the OTP was that my trial was due to start in

Page 17426

 1     the autumn.  I didn't want to seek any guarantees from the pro-Western

 2     regime in Belgrade, but the key argument was that my trial was to

 3     commence in the autumn and thereby there was no need for any decision to

 4     release me from detention.

 5             There are other deceased witnesses.  I managed to locate a total

 6     of ten of them.  There was an officer in Slavonia.  There was one from

 7     Ilijas who was a member of Vaske Vidovic's unit.  He was a Muslim but he

 8     was a member of that unit throughout the whole war.  When the Serbs had

 9     to withdraw from Ilijas after the Dayton Accords, he decided to stay

10     because he didn't want to leave his house and his estate.  And then he

11     had to prove to the Muslim authorities that he had been forcibly

12     mobilised, that he was made to become a member of that unit.  So he was

13     yet another false witness of yours.

14             Had you started this trial in time, you would have been able to

15     call all those witnesses who died in the meantime.  Now, why are you

16     late?  It is not my fault that this trial has been delayed for such a

17     long time.  You didn't have to adjourn even the sessions this week.  I

18     wanted to appear here on Monday.  So not a single day in court has been

19     lost due to my fault, and now you are trying to use their preliminary

20     statements as evidence.  Who can make any use of such evidence?  No one.

21     Those were the statements that you wrote yourself and they only signed

22     it.  Had you started the trial in time, they would have appeared here in

23     the courtroom and we would have possibly arrived at the truth.  As it is,

24     it makes no point to discuss the statements of the deceased people

25     anymore, and I have no intention of doing that.

Page 17427

 1             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, the physician said

 2     you should have a break every hour and a quarter.  We have been sitting

 3     for an hour and 18 minutes.  You have been talking for an hour and

 4     18 minutes, so we shall have a 30-minute break since we stick very

 5     closely to what the doctor has prescribed.  And we shall resume in

 6     30 minutes' time.

 7                           --- Recess taken at 10.17 a.m.

 8                           --- On resuming at 10.48 a.m.

 9             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The court is back in session.

10             Mr. Seselj, you have the floor.

11             THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I will now be speaking about that

12     part of the indictment and the closing arguments of the Prosecution that

13     concerns Hrtkovci.

14             As soon as Franjo Tudjman came into power in Croatia, as soon as

15     the HDZ took all the levers of power, an organised expulsion and

16     persecution of Serbs began, primarily the urban population.  What are the

17     sources for this?  This was extensively dealt with by

18     Professor Svetozar Livada who published a book about it.  And the

19     Prosecution co-operated for a while quite a lot with Professor Livada,

20     and back in that day, the Prosecution disclosed to me material from one

21     magazine that deals with various forms of persecution of Serbs in

22     Croatia, topic by topic, and Svetozar Livada was one of the authors.

23     This was also dealt with by Tudjman's chief biographer, Darko Hudelist.

24     He dealt with all those aspects of the Tudjman regime and I quote him

25     quite a lot in my book, "The Roman Catholic Project of the Artificial

Page 17428

 1     Croatian Nation."  That author dealt with Tudjman's co-operation with the

 2     Ustasha emigre circles, with the Franciscan priests, the Roman Catholic

 3     church in Croatia, and others who enabled him to take power in Croatia.

 4     As they enabled him -- as they had enabled Ante Pavelic to come into

 5     power.  Ante Pavelic had come from Italy with two or three truckloads of

 6     Ustashas, less than a hundred men, but he still managed to take power

 7     because he had the assistance of the Roman Catholic church through all

 8     their parishes, and he took over the infrastructure of the Croatian

 9     Peasants Party led by Macek and their urban and village guards.

10             And the third very serious source about the persecution of Serbs

11     is Stipe Suvar, who dealt with this thoroughly in his book:  "The

12     Croatian Carousel."  And in my own book I quote a few long passages from

13     Suvar's book.  If I had enough time at my disposal, I would read those

14     passages to you, but I'm already beginning to doubt that I would be able

15     to present all that I had planned because I've already used up half of my

16     time, and I cannot really count on the extension I wanted of four hours

17     because nobody will grant me anything.

18             Serb houses were blown up.  Serbs were killed here and there.

19     They were very often beaten up.  There was organised oppression of Serb

20     children in Croatian schools.  Their Croat peers ganged up on them.

21     Serbs were dismissed from their jobs, especially in state institutions.

22             Already in 1990 there occurred a great exodus of Serbs from the

23     Croatian federal unit.  In early 1991 this grew to unsuspected,

24     unexpected proportions.  And we then formed the staff of the Serb Radical

25     Party with a task to find accommodation of some kind for these refugees

Page 17429

 1     and to help them.  That was the original purpose of our Crisis Staff

 2     before the war began, before the shooting began.  And the Crisis Staff

 3     was renamed into War Staff only when the immediate threat of war was

 4     proclaimed.

 5             You know, Belgrade is a big city with a population of a million,

 6     600.000.  There were many apartments there, many owned by the federal

 7     state that was in the process of breaking up, and we located those

 8     apartments and placed refugee Serb families in them semi-legally.  When I

 9     say "semi-legally," I mean that we had no legal grounds for doing it, but

10     the authorities did not oppose it because it was a necessary provisional

11     solution.

12             When the armed conflict began, open expulsion of Serbs began too.

13     Serbs were expelled en masse from Grubisno Polje in the west of Croatia.

14     They were expelled en masse from Dalmatian towns, from various towns in

15     Slavonia, from Zagreb, from Sisak, Varazdin, and other places.  Waves of

16     refugees swept over Serbia.  In early 1992, there were already between

17     2- and 300.000 expelled Serbs.  I'm not even counting those who went to

18     Bosnia-Herzegovina or to third countries, only Serbs who were expelled

19     and found refuge in Serbia.

20             In those conditions, when a deluge of refugees swept over Serbia,

21     we held the first elections into the Federal Assembly of Yugoslavia.  The

22     new constitution was proclaimed in December 1991 and the elections were

23     scheduled for January next year.  So we had only one month for the

24     electoral campaign.  Under those circumstances, I sometimes held three

25     rallies a day, mostly two rallies a day, but very rarely just one.  And I

Page 17430

 1     held that rally in Hrtkovci.  Hrtkovci is rather a large place with many

 2     surrounding villages, and in that speech I present the pre-electoral

 3     programme of the Serbian Radical Party.  You have seen the full text of

 4     that speech.

 5             Mr. Marcussen or some of his associates - they're all the same to

 6     me and I can't distinguish between them - said that I subsequently

 7     published that speech after the indictment was brought.  No.  I

 8     republished it for the second or third time after the indictment was

 9     brought.  It was published in one of my books many years earlier.  I

10     always tried to publish all my speeches that have been recorded.  I

11     haven't managed with all of them because not all of them recorded, but I

12     have published all of my interviews, all of my speeches on the radio, all

13     my presentations on TV.  I've published all I've ever said because I have

14     nothing to be ashamed of.  I would repeat the same thing today, perhaps

15     with some modifications.  Maybe I would be more convincing saying the

16     same things today because I have more experience and I'm more mature.

17     But it would not sound as intelligent as it did then because one's IQ

18     diminishes with time, with age.

19             That rally was not militant in nature.  The Prosecution says that

20     the rally was attended by Chetniks in black uniforms.  Never.  Nowhere

21     did Chetniks wear black uniforms, in the Second World War or in the

22     latest wars, never.  The volunteers of the Serbian Radical Party wore

23     camouflage uniforms, and very seldom old green-grey military uniforms.

24     Because the JNA was anxious to recruit as many volunteers of the Serbian

25     Radical Party as possible, because they were the most disciplined, they

Page 17431

 1     always provided them uniforms from JNA depots.  There were, in fact, few

 2     people who were dressed in part of military uniform at that rally.  Now

 3     when I look at rallies on TV, they show lumberjacks or peasants or

 4     farmers.  I often see people wearing camouflage pants or blouses.  You

 5     see the Serbian cap.  The Serbian peasant cap as part of our traditional

 6     costume originates from the first part of the 19th century as a military

 7     cap, and the Serbs took a liking to it and started wearing it in everyday

 8     life.  And now this cap called sajkaca is one of Serbian symbols.

 9             So it's possible that some participants in that rally wore parts

10     of the camouflage uniform, but nobody wore the full uniform and there was

11     nobody carrying an automatic weapon.  There was our party's security

12     detail armed with pistols, but they were hidden.  The Radical Party music

13     and the Chetnik music was played before the rally, as is the custom for a

14     couple of hours before the rally begins.  That's a way to attract people.

15     Nobody certainly wore black.

16             You have seen the lists and there were no lists of Croats to be

17     expelled.  A list was read out of the Croats who had already left

18     Hrtkovci and joined the Croatian Home Guards, a paramilitary organisation

19     in Croatia formed by Tudjman.  I did not personally read that list out,

20     but I take responsibility for it as if I had read it.  Somewhere sometime

21     I said I've read it myself, because I would.  Why not?

22             And then you summon false witnesses who claim here in the

23     courtroom - at least one of them does - that I asked in my speech that

24     all mixed marriages be dissolved.  Another witness says I asked that

25     children in mixed marriages be killed.  You've heard it all here in the

Page 17432

 1     courtroom.  And when I filed charges against these false witnesses, you

 2     rejected it, perhaps with the explanation that those witnesses were not

 3     aware they were lying.

 4             Even that goes here.  All that the Prosecution ascribes to me is

 5     as truthful as the claim that I had publicly asked for children of mixed

 6     marriages to be killed.

 7             There was an extensive change of property in Hrtkovci between

 8     Serbs expelled from Croatia and the local Croats.  The Serbs who had been

 9     expelled did not have time to take even a bag with necessities, whereas

10     local Croats from Hrtkovci had ample opportunity to travel to Croatia

11     several times and look at the property concerned and decide whether they

12     want it, whether it's good enough.  Why didn't the OTP go after anyone

13     responsible for that great expulsion of Serbs from Croatia?

14             It's not my job to defend myself by saying, "Why are you not

15     prosecuting that other person who did worse?"  I cannot use that as a

16     defence, but I can use it to compromise the Prosecution.  And all of you

17     here, it's more important for me to expose you than to defend myself and

18     it's not easy [as interpreted] to expose you because you are setting

19     yourselves up.  You position yourselves as easy targets.  It's no problem

20     to get you.  You are compromised because you have never prosecuted anyone

21     from Croatia who was responsible for the expulsion of Serbs, and that

22     expulsion stretched over several years from the moment Tudjman came into

23     power.  And you want to convict me because I advocated at least a partial

24     exchange of population.

25             First of all, I advocated retortion.  Retortion is a principle

Page 17433

 1     that exists in international law; some states apply it, others don't, but

 2     you cannot deny that it exists.  Retortion often means retaliation, not

 3     just responding by the same means, but by harsher means sometimes.  Where

 4     are the Germans who used to live in Czechoslovakia?  Where are the

 5     Germans who used to live in Poland?  How many Germans used to live in the

 6     territory of Poland?  Where are the Italians who lived on the eastern

 7     Adriatic coast?  More than 300.000 of them were expelled.  Where are the

 8     Germans from the former Yugoslavia?

 9             This is a principle that you can justify or not morally speaking,

10     but it exists.  At that rally, I was making promises about what we would

11     do if we get into power, and you can see that from my speech.  And you

12     are now trying to present my speech as an attack in order to apply

13     Article 5 of the Statute.  There must be an organised and systematic

14     attack under circumstances of war.

15             The Trial Chamber on which Judge Antonetti sat in 2004 deciding

16     on my objection to the indictment ruled that all locations concerning

17     Vojvodina should be deleted from the indictment unless the Prosecution

18     proves there was an armed conflict in Vojvodina.  Then the Prosecution

19     appealed, and the Appeals Chamber returned those locations into the

20     indictment, explaining that it is the trial that must show whether there

21     was an armed conflict or not.  The Prosecution asserts there was an armed

22     conflict in Croatia at the time and in Bosnia-Herzegovina, so there was a

23     nexus between the events in Hrtkovci and that armed conflict.  That is

24     not true.

25             The Vance Plan put an end to the armed conflict in Croatia and

Page 17434

 1     UNPROFOR members were deployed in the territory of the Republic of

 2     Serbian Krajina.  When it comes to the Serbian refugees and displaced

 3     persons, with an exception of Western Slavonia from where there was a

 4     major exodus of the Serbs in November and December 1991, all the other

 5     Serbian refugees had come from the areas where there were no armed

 6     conflicts.  There were no armed conflicts in Zagreb, Varazdin, Sisak, and

 7     in many other towns and places.  There were no armed conflicts in

 8     Vojvodina either.  Your expert Theunens says that there were no attacks

 9     on the civilian population of Hrtkovci.  Not only was there to be an

10     attack of the same intensity as some individual crimes comprised by

11     Article 5 of the Statute, but also that attack had to be systematic and

12     extensive.  There were no attacks whatsoever.

13             In the absence of any attack, you treat my speech as an attack.

14     This is inadmissible.  This was also taken into consideration in the

15     judgement against Dario Kordic, a verbal attack cannot be a real attack,

16     and you now say that it can be.  You can say whatever you want.  You do

17     not respect any moral obligations.  You do not respect any legal

18     principles.  You will say whatever comes to you, your mind.  You have

19     come here as anonymous individuals, and after the trial you will again be

20     anonymous individuals.  You have good salaries here.  It seems that you

21     have gained the right to full retirement after having worked for the

22     United Nations for only four years, and what do you care?  You have done

23     your dirty job.  You have earned a handsome sum of money and then you

24     will leave.  Nobody knew you before this trial, nobody will know you

25     after this trial.  And since there was no attack, there can also be no

Page 17435

 1     crime of persecution.

 2             Your witnesses stated that some refugees were armed, and then I

 3     asked a witness who testified via videolink, if I'm not mistaken, about

 4     the weapons.  And he said, "We noticed that they had pistols in the

 5     holsters."  When I was in Belgrade, I also wore a pistol in the holster,

 6     but I did not intend to attack anybody.  I love carrying a pistol, and if

 7     I'm in danger I very much prefer to defend myself.

 8             You evoke a report by a false expert, Ewa Tabeau.  She used some

 9     church documents issued by the Roman Catholic parish in Hrtkovci in order

10     to arrive at far-reaching conclusions.  She should have researched the

11     data in Ruma about those who moved in and out, about the property that

12     was exchanged.  All that was available to her, but she couldn't care

13     less.  She wasn't interested in that.

14             The only thing she took into account was what a drunken parish

15     priest in Hrtkovci recorded in his church books.  There were a lot of

16     certificates that were issued there about baptisms taking place in the

17     Roman Catholic church.  Everybody who travelled to Croatia or who maybe

18     hoped that they would travel would go and have that certificate issued to

19     them.

20             When any of you Judges travel abroad, do you go anywhere to

21     obtain a birth certificate?  I suppose that Mr. Antonetti and

22     Mrs. Lattanzi, you're Catholics.  You, Mr. Harhoff, are probably a

23     Protestant.  I don't know.  I'm not sure, but I suspect that.  In any

24     case, do you go and obtain a birth certificate every time you travel

25     abroad?  I'm sure that you don't.  You never have, have you?

Page 17436

 1             So why did the Croats in Hrtkovci go to obtain their birth

 2     certificates?  Because they could not enter Croatia with a Yugoslav

 3     passport unless they could prove that they were of Roman Catholic faith

 4     because Croatia was involved in discrimination against Orthodox citizens

 5     of Yugoslavia and didn't allow them to enter Croatia; and that is why

 6     those certificates were obtained by Croats.  Some of those who had those

 7     certificates issued to never travelled, never moved from Hrtkovci.

 8             In order for you to convict me for prosecution [as interpreted],

 9     deportation, and forcible movement of people, you have to prove that

10     people were deported, that at least one Croat was deported.  Let us see

11     which Croat was it who was deported from Serbia.  Do you know what

12     deportation is?  Do you know how deportation is implemented?

13             If a Croat didn't feel comfortable living along so many Serb

14     refugees - and I believe that many felt that way - and if they travelled

15     to Croatia two or three times in order to find property for exchange, is

16     that deportation?  There were false witnesses here who testified that

17     they didn't fare well.  Now imagine that, several hundred thousand Serbs

18     expelled from Serbia could not travel there ever again, and here we have

19     a couple of hundred Croats who wanted to exchange property and then they

20     claim that they fared worse than any of the Serbs.  That defies any

21     reason.

22             Croats travelled several times to Croatia, they would view the

23     properties, and then they would clinch a deal, most commonly before the

24     Croatian authorities, sometimes before Serbian authorities, but it's not

25     here nor there.  In any case, they were not forced to do that.  And it

Page 17437

 1     was only when they exchanged property when they finally moved out.  Would

 2     you call that deportation?

 3             What lawyer in this world would dare say that this is

 4     deportation?  Not a single serious, reasonable lawyer could say that.  In

 5     The Hague Tribunal, obviously you don't talk about reasonable lawyers.

 6     I, for one, don't.  But I'm here to say publicly that not a single Croat

 7     was ever deported.

 8             It did happen that one Croat was killed sometime around that

 9     time - and I'm referring to the month of June, if I'm not mistaken - his

10     name was Stefanec.  However, his murder was elucidated and the motive was

11     pure criminal motive and the perpetrators were punished.  The Roman

12     Catholic church and its parish office were robbed.  That's what happened.

13     And then a key witness confirmed here that the perpetrator -- perpetrator

14     was a Roman Catholic and that he was convicted, and that happened outside

15     of the scope of the indictment that was issued against me.

16             What persecution are we talking about?  Can we talk about

17     persecution if somebody didn't like my speech?  Many of you today don't

18     like my speech today in this courtroom.  Are you saying that I'm

19     persecuting you?  I would, I would gladly persecute you if I had any

20     power in my hands.  Unfortunately, this -- these words of mine cannot be

21     considered persecution.  They can spoil your lunch today.  You may feel

22     uncomfortable.  However, they're just words.  I can't do anything to you.

23     When somebody voices their opinion, even if that opinion is the worst

24     possible opinion you can hear, this cannot be considered a crime.

25             At the end of the 20th century and the beginning of the

Page 17438

 1     21st century, obviously some international organisations, such as the

 2     Council of Europe, advocated the prosecution of hate speech.  A very

 3     famous discussion took place in the British parliament about that same

 4     issue.  However, what is emphasised all the time is that the any -- hate

 5     speech cannot be punished by a prison sentence.  There are other

 6     punishments available.

 7             This Trial Chamber evoked the laws of the communist state of

 8     Yugoslavia.  There was a crime there entitled:  Spreading of racial and

 9     religious hatred, and the maximum punishment was ten years' imprisonment.

10     And then in the 1990s, under external pressure when the crime of enemy

11     propaganda was abolished, this crime of spreading intolerance and racial

12     hatred, for that the sentence was half.  But you cannot pass your

13     judgement based on communist laws.  You have to base your sentences on

14     international law.  And when it comes to the hate speech as a crime has

15     to be comprised by Article 5 of the Statute.  But even for that you do

16     not have any base.  You can now come up with a new rule, with a new legal

17     norm that will start with you.  This is the only way to do it.  There are

18     no two ways around it.

19             Evoking the Streicher case is -- has missed the target.  He

20     was -- he was inciting people to commit a genocide against the Jews and

21     he participated in the crimes starting with the Crystal Night when the

22     synagogues were burned and so on and so forth.  At that time genocide as

23     a crime was not defined.  However, the characteristics of a crime that

24     were -- that was attributed to Julius Streicher became the

25     characteristics of the crime of genocide pursuant to the convention on

Page 17439

 1     genocide, and that's where the story ends.

 2             You can only punish me for inciting people to commit genocide,

 3     but I've never done that.  If you have come across any such thing in

 4     anything that I did, you would charge me with genocide.  Inviting people

 5     publicly to commit crimes against humanity or to violate the laws and

 6     customs of war cannot be considered instigation.  Now you're telling me

 7     that I invited people to kill other people and that I said in my public

 8     speeches that I am in favour of killing, rape, and so on and so forth.

 9     For as long as you cannot prove that in my speeches I advocated a

10     genocide, I cannot be punished for that.  You can hate me.  You can

11     attack me publicly.  You can say that I am an evil person.  But you

12     cannot punish me.  You cannot convict me.  It cannot be done under the

13     law.  It can be done arbitrarily by The Hague Tribunal, by the

14     international institutions backing The Hague Tribunal.  You can do

15     whatever.

16             You're trying me, the general public is trying you, and we still

17     don't know who will fare better; it remains to be seen.

18             You have not accepted my studies with proofs of the hate speech

19     in Croatia and in Bosnia.  These are voluminous studies that I

20     subsequently published in my books.  Thus, you have prevented me from

21     arguing my case about that.  And I repeat once again, nobody can justify

22     their crimes by saying that others commit crimes as well.

23             When it comes to verbal crimes, there is a public atmosphere

24     where some statements are given and issued.  Let's look at the atmosphere

25     and let's see what statements were heard and seen in the Croatian media

Page 17440

 1     and at political rallies against the Serbs.  Let us see what the Muslim

 2     media and what the Muslim political rallies said about the Serbs and

 3     against the Serbs.  Let's see who was more extreme in that.  Let's see

 4     what happened first and what happened next.

 5             Obviously you prevented all that and also you did not allow my

 6     two studies to be translated into English.  You had only one study

 7     translated and then you were sick from reading my arguments.

 8             At one point in time somebody from the OTP tried to link me with

 9     Ostoja Sibincic.  We have proven here in this courtroom that

10     Ostoja Sibincic was a member of the Serbian Renewal Movement, he was an

11     official, and when a campaign was launched in the media by the

12     pro-Western political parties and the so-called non-governmental

13     organisations that were actually spies, that campaign also involved

14     Ostoja Sibincic.  Ostoja Sibincic was arrested sometime in August 1992.

15     At a press conference I condemned his arrest.  Why?  If Ostoja Sibincic

16     had been arrested immediately after perhaps having committed a crime,

17     things would have been fine.  However, he was arrested only after a

18     strong and fierce political campaign in the media, and that was not

19     right.

20             You cannot take into consideration all the deafening noise that

21     these spy organisations who would call themselves non-governmental

22     organisation and pro-Western political parties as something that could be

23     the grounds for criminally prosecuting someone.  I myself publicly

24     denounced the arrest of Alija Izetbegovic in 1983, the arrest of

25     Izetbegovic and a group of his fellow Muslims.  Already at that time

Page 17441

 1     Alija Izetbegovic had written the Islamic Declaration.  Nevertheless, I

 2     defended his right to think in a foolish way and to put on paper foolish

 3     things.  However, when he tried to put that into practice as a political

 4     project at the expense of the Serbian national interest, then I

 5     confronted him with weapons.

 6             You can wage a war against ideas only with better ones, and

 7     that's all.  Based on the fact that I condemned Sibincic's arrest, which

 8     was a product of a political witch-hunt, you established a connection

 9     between Sibincic and myself as if we co-operated in some illegal acts.

10             Now let me quote an example from the current Serbian case law

11     which proves that this is not possible.  There was a third-rate actor in

12     Serbia called Zarko Lausevic, he was from Montenegro, and a few years ago

13     he happened to be in Podgorica in a cafe, where two or three young men

14     were talking loudly.  And he started shouting at them to keep it down and

15     to shut up.  These young men resented that.  They traded insults.  And at

16     one point Zarko Lausevic draws his pistol, he killed two of those two [as

17     interpreted] young Serbs and wounded the third one and he fired a total

18     of 15 bullets.  Zarko Lausevic was known to the public as a Montenegrin

19     nationalist and one of the founders of the Liberal League of Montenegro.

20             Now, he's being tried for using excessive force in self-defence.

21     Various authorities, both in Serbia and Montenegro, tried to suppress the

22     fact that he actually killed two innocent men.  What kind of self-defence

23     is if you fire 15 bullets on two unarmed people?  Even Vera Petkovic, who

24     is here an official psychiatrist, participated in providing false

25     statements to the effect that Zarko Lausevic was in a state of diminished

Page 17442

 1     capacity.  What was, in fact, the case, Zarko Lausevic was drunk, he was

 2     under the influence of alcohol, and that cannot exonerate him.

 3             Eventually, Zarko Lausevic was sentenced to 12 years in prison.

 4     He was at one point released because there were several re-trials, and he

 5     used that opportunity to flee to the United States.

 6             Now, a few days ago, although he's still at large and there is a

 7     wanted act issued by Interpol, Boris Tadic, the president of the

 8     Republic of Serbia, pardoned Mr. Lausevic.

 9             Now, Judges, let me ask you this:  Is it possible that the

10     president of the republic in your country or a king, can they pardon a

11     fugitive?  I suppose that such persons should first be taken into the

12     hands of the law and then you can issue a decree on pardon.  Here we have

13     a fugitive being pardoned, and then the interior minister of Serbia,

14     Ivica Dacic, travelled to New York in order to personally hand the

15     Serbian passport to Zarko Lausevic.

16             Now, I can condemn morally and politically both the president of

17     the republic and the interior minister.  But based on how they treated

18     Zarko Lausevic, by diminishing his crimes, by pardoning him and giving

19     him a passport, can I conclude that Boris Tadic was his accomplice in the

20     murder of those two young men?  No, that's not possible.  Can I reach the

21     same conclusion as far as Ivica Dacic is concerned?  No, it's not

22     possible.  So how can then all the OTP, based on the fact that I defended

23     Ostoja Sibincic and the fact that he was arrested based on political

24     reason, conclude that Ostoja Sibincic and I took part in the same

25     criminal offences?  But The Hague Prosecutors can do everything that

Page 17443

 1     mortal, ordinary people cannot.

 2             Now, concerning Hrtkovci, I published a book which has

 3     1200 pages.  You know that I was prosecuted for contempt of court because

 4     of that book.  This book is available on my internet site, and already

 5     about 10.000 copies of the books have been downloaded from the site.

 6     There was no crime of persecution committed in Hrtkovci.  There was no

 7     crime of deportation.  There was no crime of forcible transfer.

 8             My speech was not to the liking of many people.  So what?  I feel

 9     the same when I'm listening to people from the OTP, and by quoting some

10     Croat, Ms. Biersay quoted a Croat who swore and used abusive language

11     about my mother.  But what can I do?  I have to listen to that.  So if

12     you have a camera filmed a taxi-driver known as Combe saying, I

13     [indiscernible] mother, I would have thought this to be very unpleasant.

14     However, when she repeated that in court nobody felt uncomfortable.  So I

15     am repeating this again today in order to show how inappropriate that is

16     because that was not any evidence against me, the fact that some 20 years

17     ago a Croat swore and cursed my mother.  And what does this prove?

18             This only proves how brazen the OTP is.  There is no other

19     reason.  This does not constitute any charge against me.  This was only

20     intended to offend me, and I think that Mrs. Biersay will be equally

21     offended due to my quoting her words.

22             Now, there were lots of other similar bright moments in your

23     closing argument.  For example, you say that the SRS volunteers were

24     notorious for the brutality of their crimes.  However, you haven't yet

25     managed to identify a single crime that based on evidence can be

Page 17444

 1     attributed to a volunteer from the Serbian Radical Party.  You cannot

 2     give us any specific names by saying so and so, a volunteer, committed

 3     this.

 4             Now, let's look at another contradiction into which OTP has put

 5     themselves.  They constantly repeat that we had been sending volunteers

 6     in an organised manner in groups equalling a company, which means around

 7     100 volunteers, and they confirmed that.  They say that this is a proof

 8     that we are a paramilitary organisation.  On the other hand, they are

 9     trying to prove that at various locations there were Serbian forces and

10     an odd member of the Seselj's group, including Seseljevci.  So how is

11     that possible?  We send volunteers equalling a company, and then they

12     disperse on the ground into various units and they can be found

13     everywhere.  Where is any sound logic in that?  How is that possible?

14     Where is your intelligence?

15             Speaking about the alleged JCE, the OTP claims that our common

16     goal was the unification of all Serbs in Greater Serbia, but that was

17     solely my goal and the goal of the Serbian Radical Party.  Nobody else

18     put this -- put forward this as their goal, and -- but we explained the

19     meaning of that objective in our party documents.

20             The OTP says that I pursued relentless and merciless propaganda

21     campaign against Muslims, Croats, and Albanians.  Now, why are you

22     mentioning Albanians here?  Why do you need that?  You are lacking

23     evidence so you would like to add some ingredients to it?  And you --

24     even if I had killed a million Albanians, you cannot touch me now.  So

25     what do we do now?  Are you going to cry over this?  Why didn't you

Page 17445

 1     indict me in time for Albanians as well?

 2             This relentless and perpetual campaign against Croat and Muslims,

 3     yes, it was relentless.  It was merciless and it targeted everyone who

 4     was putting the Serbian national interests at risk, but we have to ask

 5     ourselves:  Who is to blame for the war?  Was it those who broke up

 6     Yugoslavia in a violent way or those who wanted to preserve Yugoslavia in

 7     a violent way?  They cannot be put in the same basket.  The break-up of

 8     Yugoslavia by forcible means is a criminal offence per se and it cannot

 9     be justified in terms of international law, whereas the violent attempt

10     to preserve Yugoslavia is not a criminal offence.  It's a constitutional

11     obligation.

12             Some say that the complete ethnic composition was changed, that I

13     sowed venom both in Serbs and non-Serbs with my speeches and that I

14     particularly was a champion of Greater Serbia.  I explained everything to

15     you yesterday.  I said that everything that I said publicly is based on

16     facts, sometimes historical facts, sometimes contemporary facts.  You

17     said that there were exaggerations; I say there weren't.  My reaction to

18     every event was an appropriate one and very often it contained a warning.

19             Now, I have moved to a number of general questions and I would

20     like us to have a break before I start speaking about Sarajevo, Mostar,

21     and Nevesinje.  If it's possible, I'd like to have a break now because we

22     were working for an hour now.

23             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Very well.  Let's take a break.

24     It's a quarter to 12.00 right now.  We'll take a break until 12.15, so

25     we'll have a 30-minute break and then we'll continue until the end of the

Page 17446

 1     session until 1.15.  So we shall reconvene at 12.15.

 2                           --- Recess taken at 11.45 a.m.

 3                           --- On resuming at 12.15 p.m.

 4             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] The court is back in session.

 5             Mr. Seselj, you have the floor.

 6             THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Now we come to the issue of

 7     Sarajevo.  At the very beginning of the war, we had a large group of SRS

 8     volunteers in Sarajevo.  They took part in the fighting for Grbavica 2

 9     and for Hrasno.  This group was led by Branislav --

10             THE INTERPRETER:  Can Mr. Seselj please repeat the two names.

11             THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] I organised transportation for

12     Branislav Gavrilovic --

13             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] Mr. Seselj, would you be so

14     kind as to repeat the names.  The interpreters were not able to hear the

15     names of the people you mentioned.

16             THE ACCUSED: [Interpretation] Branislav Gavrilovic, aka Brne,

17     this name has been mentioned quite often.  He's a Chetnik Vojvoda.  And

18     the other one is Srdjan Glamocanin, a man who deserved a lot due to his

19     services in the war, but I did not give him the title of Vojvoda because

20     his father was the vice-president of the Serbian Radical Party.

21     Jovan Glamocanin testified here to the effect that he had been coached by

22     Zoran Djindjic to give false testimony against me.

23             The OTP devoted a lot of attention to a telephone conversation

24     that I had at the time.  Around 18 volunteers found themselves surrounded

25     in Hrasno.  They were much better in the fighting skills compared to

Page 17447

 1     other Serb forces, and due to the fact that there was no co-ordination,

 2     there was danger of them all being killed.  Branislav Gavrilovic, who was

 3     wounded, rang me up and you have this intercept.  In this conversation I

 4     explained to him that I wanted to get in touch with Radovan Karadzic and

 5     I failed to do so, but I sent a message to the leadership of

 6     Republika Srpska to help the volunteers immediately and to help them to

 7     pull out, otherwise we shall withdraw all the volunteers from

 8     Bosnia-Herzegovina.  Maybe my threat was an exaggerated one.  Maybe they

 9     would have helped them even without that, but at any rate the assistance

10     rendered was an efficient one.

11             And this is all you have, the recording of this telephone

12     conversation of mine.  Maybe you have an intercept of a conversation that

13     I had with Katarina Ducic who worked at the SRNA agency.  We studied

14     together political sciences in Sarajevo and she knew Radovan Karadzic

15     very well.  So I used her to convey messages over the phone and for

16     passing on my requests to have the volunteers pulled out from the

17     encirclement.

18             Now you people from The Hague OTP, why didn't you ask yourself:

19     Why don't you have any other intercepts of mine?  You only have this

20     conversation which necessitated an urgent call to be made.  Here's the

21     reason why.  The reason is because I am a long-standing anti-communist

22     dissident, a veteran who knew very well how to make contacts and who did

23     not rely on telephone calls.

24             There are plenty intercepts of calls by other people, some of

25     them you disclosed to me, including with Branislav Gavrilovic and

Page 17448

 1     Maja Gojkovic, then vice-president of the Serbian Radical Party, who talk

 2     over the phone and blabber all sorts of things.  Of course there's

 3     nothing incriminating to me in those conversations, but as far as I'm

 4     concerned, you cannot find a single telephone call that you could use

 5     even to illustrate events, let alone incriminate me.

 6             I'm an experienced anti-communist veteran who learned a long time

 7     ago what wire-tapping means and what it could lead to.  However, that

 8     does not matter for the main problem.  We had a lot more volunteers of

 9     the Serbian Radical Party in the area of Sarajevo.  I, for instance,

10     remember the group commanded by Jovo Ostojic, the group that took part in

11     the fighting around Poljine.  You have no idea about that.  You focused

12     on three Chetnik Vojvodas, valuable members of the party, with whom we

13     never actually sent any volunteers.  Whenever I came to Sarajevo, I

14     visited the unit of Slavko Aleksic made up of volunteers from all sides

15     of the world.  Most numerous were Russians, but there were also

16     Ukrainians, Bulgarians, Frenchmen, one German, one Japanese man, and

17     people from some other countries.  And I visited him every time.

18             Slavko Aleksic was a very valiant fighter, a good man, the pride

19     of the Serbian Radical Party.  Unfortunately, after the war, under the

20     influence of Vojvoda Djujic with whom he communicated directly, he took

21     sides with Biljana Plavsic and that's where our friendship ended.  He

22     remained a Vojvoda.  Nobody revoked his title, but I stopped my

23     communication with him because I recognised Biljana Plavsic as a traitor

24     very early on when many others didn't, and they later regretted it

25     bitterly.  But we did not send volunteers to the unit of Slavko Aleksic.

Page 17449

 1             Second, Slavko Aleksic was at the beginning of the war member of

 2     the Municipal Board of the Serbian Democratic Party.  Then he joined the

 3     Serbian Radical Party.  He was first mobilised as a policeman and then he

 4     established his separate unit.  Not a single war crime can be linked with

 5     the name of Slavko Aleksic, not one.

 6             Another person that is mentioned is Branislav Gavrilovic, Brne.

 7     You know how he came to the area of Sarajevo.  When the operation of our

 8     volunteers was finished in the area of Grbavica and when they returned to

 9     Serbia, Branislav Gavrilovic remained in Sarajevo because he is a native

10     of Sarajevo.  You have a whole series of his telephone conversations made

11     from Sarajevo.  Before the war in Bosnia-Herzegovina he was in love with

12     Maja Gojkovic at the time, so that's a bit of pillow talk you can hear on

13     those tapes.  You gave me a lot of them.

14             Branislav Gavrilovic remained in the town when -- where he was

15     born, in Sarajevo.  He joined the Ilidza brigade of the VRS and he took

16     part in the fighting for Igman.  And he rallied a number of volunteers

17     from that area.  Maybe he was joined by a few people from Serbia, but he

18     was not joined by anyone who was sent by the War Staff of the

19     Serbian Radical Party.  At one point he was very angry, in May 1992, when

20     Nikola Poplasen was appointed temporary president of the Serbian Radical

21     Party of Republika Srpska.  He even left the Serbian Radical Party, then

22     formed the Serbian Freedom Movement, and he had 400 members.  He gave me

23     a list later.

24             I am not denouncing or distancing myself or repudiating any of my

25     members or any Chetnik Vojvoda, but I am pointing out the facts in order

Page 17450

 1     to expose your lies, to disabuse you of your misconceptions.

 2             Branislav Gavrilovic did not commit any war crimes.  You can see

 3     from the statement of Perica Koblar how much care he took of his men.  He

 4     made them wear proper uniforms and helmets and protection gear to keep

 5     them from being killed by the Muslims.  But you have all seen how

 6     Perica Koblar fared here in the courtroom.

 7             The third person is Vasilije Vidovic, also known as Vaske.  He

 8     was one of the founders of the Serbian Chetnik Movement in Belgrade, one

 9     of the first hundred signatories when we tried to register the

10     Serbian Chetnik Movement as a political party.  His nickname then was

11     Jaro.  We didn't call him Vaske.  And he left with one of the volunteer

12     groups for Benkovac in 1991.  When I toured the Republic of Serbian

13     Krajina in November 1991, I also visited that unit in Benkovac.  And the

14     members of that unit were sitting in that cafe where I talked to Serb

15     soldiers, trying to persuade them into wearing helmets.  You have showed

16     that video-clip.

17             After that I have no more contact with Vasilije Vidovic.  When

18     the Vance Plan was accepted, he returned to Ilijas.  And when the war

19     broke out in Bosnia-Herzegovina, he formed one unit of volunteers,

20     platoon-strong, I believe, or half a company.  Around 50 men.  I have

21     given you, Judges, his war diaries.  I actually pushed those war diaries

22     on you although you didn't want to admit them into evidence.  That was a

23     gift to you from the Chetnik Vojvoda Vasilije Vidovic with his

24     compliments.

25             I didn't hear anything about Vaske Vidovic.  Nor did I have any

Page 17451

 1     contact with him from 1994 onwards.

 2             When I bestowed the title of Vojvoda on many on Mount Romanija in

 3     1993, I did not include him.  Before 1994 I never went to Vogosca,

 4     Ilijas, Rajlovac, Ilidza, or Hadzici.  In 1994 when I came to inspect the

 5     front line in Sarajevo, Vasilije Vidovic came to Grbavica and asked me to

 6     accompany him to Ilijas the next day.  And I first visited his unit in

 7     1994, and only after that I proclaimed him a Serbian Chetnik Vojvoda.

 8     When I saw the unit, when I saw that all those men had joined the

 9     Serbian Radical Party, that they were all valiant fighters, I did that.

10     They had spent the entire war at Cekrcici and that is a village rather

11     forward outside Ilijas in the direction of Visoko.  It had certain

12     importance, and thanks to the unit of Vasilije Vidovic, the Muslims were

13     never able to take that position and they were never able to advance from

14     Visoko towards Ilijas.

15             We never sent volunteers from Belgrade to Vaske Vidovic's unit,

16     nor did he ever ask for it.  We sent volunteers to many other places

17     en masse, the Niksic plateau, for instance, near Olovo, for instance,

18     because there were sensitive Serb positions there and the area was not

19     very densely populated.  There were not enough Serb fighters so our

20     volunteers went there, many of them got even killed there, and people

21     from other areas of Republika Srpska also went there.

22             I next went to Ilijas in 1995.  By that time, Vasilije Vidovic

23     was already a Chetnik Vojvoda.  I again inspected all the Serb positions

24     in Ilijas, Rajlovac, Ilidza, and in Hadzici.  On my way back to Pale at

25     Poljine, I was in Vasilije Vidovic's car.  He was driving and I was

Page 17452

 1     sitting next to him.  That's the plastic -- that's the jeep with a

 2     plastic skull on the bonnet.  Tomislav Nikolic was also in the car, the

 3     current Western agent in whose recruitment the French intelligence

 4     service was involved as well.  There was also Nikola Poplasen and a

 5     volunteer from Bijeljina who was our security man.

 6             At Poljine, the Muslims fired from a Maljutka launcher at us.

 7     The Muslims had probably picked their best sharpshooter, but his hand

 8     must have shaken.  He didn't hit our car.  The projectile hit the road

 9     under the forward right wheel.  A pillar of smoke and fire rose next to

10     me.  The jeep was damaged.  Vasilije Vidovic stopped for a moment.  I

11     told him, "Drive on."  And we quickly left the area that was within the

12     Muslim range.  That was our good luck or maybe bad luck for you, bad luck

13     for all Serb enemies.  It was a close call but we did not lose our lives.

14             Why am I saying all this to you now?  To show you that I remember

15     all the details perfectly well and that you were very sloppy in

16     presenting your facts.  Not a single war crime can be attributed to

17     Vasilije Vidovic.

18             You spoke about certain crimes in Ljesevo and you linked them

19     with the fact that his unit was there fighting for Ljesevo, but you did

20     not have a witness that he was involved in any crimes.  You had a witness

21     here speaking about the execution of Muslims and he never mentioned not a

22     word about Vasilije Vidovic or his fighters.  You had another witness,

23     Safet Sejdic, who fought on the Serb side.  He was a Roma.  He was issued

24     with the most precious machine-gun, M-84, the so-called sower of death.

25     He earned himself a very good reputation in the fighting, but after the

Page 17453

 1     Dayton Accords he remained in Ilijas, and he was exposed to such

 2     mistreatment by the Muslim authorities and some Muslims that amounted to

 3     torture.  And he appeared here as a witness.

 4             Do you remember some of the more blatant lies?  He said that on

 5     the Niksic plateau on a very definite day he had seen Radovan Karadzic,

 6     Ratko Mladic, and myself.  I made fun of it, saying that Radovan Karadzic

 7     was in Belgrade at the time.  And Ratko Mladic called me as well, saying

 8     that he could not have been there either because it would have been too

 9     much to place such three personalities in the same place at the same

10     time.  It would have been too great a loss for the Serbian people.  But

11     you bought it all although I was only joking.  You could have easily

12     checked.  When I went to the Niksic plateau, I didn't go from the

13     direction of Ilijas.  I went from Mount Romanija.  I inspected the whole

14     front line towards Olovo.  I even went to the house of the Serbian

15     Vladika, Serbian cleric Longin.  His mother was still alive at the time.

16             None of those lies you told has any basis in reality.

17             As far as Nikola Poplasen is concerned, he is your collaborator.

18     He gave you his statement in secret.  He never informed anyone from the

19     Serbian Radical Party that he had spoken to OTP investigators and

20     provided them with a statement.  That statement speaks very badly of me,

21     but he never provided any grounds for incrimination.  We later expelled

22     him from the party.  We expelled him even before we found out he was your

23     collaborator because he had entered into unprincipled agreements with the

24     local authorities in Banja Luka so that his best friend could become the

25     manager of a factory there.  The Serbian Radical Party wouldn't have him

Page 17454

 1     anymore.  Why didn't you bring him here to testify?  He did testify in

 2     Krajisnik.  Why are you ascribing to me things that he may have done?

 3             He was not a volunteer of the Serbian Radical Party.  He was

 4     proclaimed a Serbian Chetnik Vojvoda, but not before 1995.  You know why?

 5     Because by that time he was a university professor in Banja Luka, and at

 6     one point when the Muslims from Bihac, toward the end of 1994 or early

 7     1995, broke through Serb positions and occupied a lot of territory, he

 8     then went to intervene as part of a hastily gathered student detachment

 9     and was very prominent as a good fighter.  That was the reason why we

10     gave him the title of Vojvoda, and also I had personal motives.  He was

11     president of the party for Republika Srpska.

12             And Tomislav Nikolic's title of Vojvoda was also politically

13     motivated.  He was not a very good fighting man, although he did spend

14     two months on the front line in Slavonia.  Still, it was not his merit in

15     war that earned him the title.  We had, for instance, Vojvoda Jevdzevic

16     in the Second World War.  He was never a commander.  He was a politician

17     but he was still proclaimed Vojvoda, and I thought I might do the same

18     with Nikolic.  I'm talking about Dobroslav Jevdzevic.

19             You're attributing to me the fact that the newspaper

20     "Western Serbia" was published.  Why didn't you ask Nikola Poplasen about

21     that newspaper because it was under his control and not mine.  Only

22     11 issues were published and then the whole project was dropped.  Why do

23     you not compare the "Western Serbia" with the "Greater Serbia" and you

24     will see how big the differences are.  Did you find the caricature that

25     may have caused a religious intolerance in that newspaper?  Why didn't

Page 17455

 1     you find anything like that in the "Greater Serbia"?  Did you find my

 2     name among the publishers of the "Western Serbia"?  No.  And you still

 3     say that that was a newspaper under my control.  How impertinent on your

 4     part.

 5             In Sarajevo no crimes that were committed can be attributed to

 6     SRS volunteers and you didn't manage to prove anything to that effect.

 7     Everything that you did has been crushed to the tiniest fragments.  Some

 8     crimes did happen sporadically.  Why didn't you investigate them?  SRS

 9     volunteers could not take prisoners of war to the front lines to dig

10     trenches there.  Why did you not establish who was it who did that?  Who

11     had the authority to do that?  Who was in a position to do that?  Or, for

12     example, Planina Kuca or something else, the name escapes me now.  This

13     is also what you have attributed to us.  All those things had nothing

14     whatsoever to do with us.

15             And now let's look at Mostar and Nevesinje.

16             In your closing argument you say that General Perisic destroyed

17     Mostar and that SRS volunteers or a unit of volunteers under the command

18     of Oliver Denis Baret was under the command of Momcilo Perisic.  First of

19     all, Mostar was not destroyed at that time.  Whatever Momcilo Perisic

20     fired at with his artillery, there is ample evidence that he first issued

21     a warning to the Croatian side over the radio that he would attack this

22     or the other civilian target and he warned the population in advance to

23     move from that area.  And that's a fact.  While Perisic was there, he

24     firmly held one part of Mostar, the left bank of the Neretva River.  When

25     the JNA withdrew, the front line fell.  The group of volunteers headed by

Page 17456

 1     Oliver, nobody can say anything bad about them, not even your false

 2     witnesses could.  They managed to locate some alleged individual

 3     Seseljevci men, one who kept -- spent his days sharpening his bayonet and

 4     similar stupid things.

 5             On the 25th of May, Baret was with me in Podgorica and he was

 6     wounded there when a hand-grenade was thrown at me.  He was in my close

 7     vicinity and suffered many wounds on his legs and the lower part of his

 8     abdomen.  I have brought you a book, "The Podgorica Assassination," and

 9     in that book you could read about the entire trial, the statements of all

10     of those who were wounded, who were eye-witnesses to the event, a

11     judgement against Sabotic, who was a Muslim and who was convicted to a

12     15-year imprisonment sentence and he spent that time in jail, and you had

13     all that.  Nothing can be said about that volunteer unit.

14             What happened next?  In late May the JNA withdrew from Mostar.

15     Some units of the newly established Republika Srpska Army stayed behind.

16     And then there was a Muslim uprising in the depth of the territory at the

17     foot of Vel ez.  Those Muslims had received a lot of weapons from the JNA

18     for their own personal security.  The JNA trusted them.  And when the JNA

19     withdrew, all of a sudden they attacked the Serbs from behind.  They

20     killed a Serbian officer, and they -- at that time all the front lines

21     along the Neretva were crushed, Klepci, Tasovcici, Pribilovci, and other

22     Serbian villages fell after having suffered huge and atrocious crimes

23     committed by Ustasha during the Second World War.  They survived the last

24     war as well, but no Serbs remained living there.  Some were killed and

25     the others had to flee.

Page 17457

 1             In Herzegovina at the time we had several hundred volunteers

 2     under the command of Branislav Vakic in an area known as Bobanj.  This is

 3     a wide area in the municipality of Trebinje bordering on the municipality

 4     of Dubrovnik.  There was a large number of Serbian villages there all

 5     inhabited by Orthodox population.  There were also two Catholic villages

 6     and another village with a majority Orthodox population with three

 7     Catholic tribes in Kijev Do.  However, all those villages were scarcely

 8     populated.  After the 70s of last year [as interpreted] when the

 9     communists abolished the railroad from Capljina and Dubrovnik, people no

10     longer saw a good perspective for life there so they moved out.  Some

11     went to Trebinje, some Dubrovnik, and some even further afield.  This was

12     therefore a very large area but sparsely populated, so nobody had to be

13     defended there.  That's why Vucurevic asked for volunteers from Serbia

14     and that's why several hundred volunteers of the SRS arrived there.

15             Having heard that the front lines were falling along the

16     Neretva River, Branislav Vakic and the 19 volunteers went to Nevesinje.

17     They reported to Novica Gusic, who was a colonel and the commander of

18     the Nevesinje brigade, and offered his help.  Gusic said that he could

19     not wait for them to return and bring all the volunteers.  He told them,

20     "You are now here and if you wish to help us, you have to start fighting

21     now."  Vakic did engage and four of the 20 killed -- the crown witness

22     for the OTP, Goran Stoparic, told us all that in the courtroom.  He was

23     there and he was wounded there.  I didn't know many of those details.  I

24     heard them for the first time from him here in the courtroom.

25             And now what happened next is that a volunteer from Vakic's group

Page 17458

 1     who was either a platoon commander or a company commander had an argument

 2     with Vakic and he abandoned the unit.  He went to Boracko Lake where he

 3     got killed.  And on the basis of that, you drew a conclusion that we also

 4     had volunteers on Boracko Lake, but that's not true.  There was just one

 5     of them.  So you lied.  We had only those 20 volunteers under Vakic's

 6     command in the territory of Nevesinje.  Four of them were killed, two or

 7     three were wounded.

 8             You are attributing to me the crimes that happened near Zalik,

 9     actually near Vrapcici, Sutina and Zalik near Vrapcici.  We never had any

10     volunteers there.  The OTP itself has provided me with the documents

11     issued by the cantonal court in Mostar, an indictment, a final decision.

12     We had all those in the courtroom, and you can tell from those that there

13     was a trial against 20 or 30 people and that there was nobody among them

14     from Serbia.  They were all locals.  And one of the false witnesses

15     stated that there must have been Seseljevci among them and then the OTP

16     takes that for granted and says, yes, there were Seseljevci there.

17     Identify just one -- identify that notorious person from Vranje of whom

18     you say and you allege that he had blown up the Catholic church in

19     Nevesinje.  Please find him.  How come that none of us knows anything

20     about that person from Vranje?  How come Vakic doesn't know anything

21     about him?

22             I'm not trying to distance myself from anybody.  I have presented

23     all the facts.  At the first elections after the fall of the communist

24     dictatorship in Nevesinje, the Serbian Renewal Movement came into power.

25     When I arrived in Nevesinje in 1991, I did not visit the municipality

Page 17459

 1     because I knew that the members of the Serbian Renewal Movement were in

 2     power.  I walked through Nevesinje.  I inspected the front lines because

 3     in 1991 there was already a front line there because the Croats had

 4     rebelled in Western Herzegovina before that.  There were war activities

 5     going on there as early as 1991.

 6             You are attributing to me Arsen Grahovac.  With all due respect

 7     towards him, he got killed in fighting and I don't know whether he is

 8     guilty of anything or not.  I don't want to go into that.  I submitted a

 9     document to you showing that Arsen Grahovac was an MP on behalf of the

10     Serbian Renewal Movement, and that's where all discussion ends for me.

11             You have found a television clip showing that during the street

12     barricades in 1991, somebody stated that he doesn't recognise anybody but

13     Milan Martic and me as their commander.  There is -- this would be

14     ridiculous if it wasn't sad.  That person could have stated anything.

15     Much ado about nothing.  And then you draw that conclusion that that

16     person was a commander there.  Are you normal at all?  No, you're not.

17             Arsen Grahovac headed the Karadjordje detachment.  I can't say

18     anything bad about that detachment either.  However, that detachment was

19     part of the light brigade under the command of Boro Antelj.  And the

20     Serbian Renewal Movement sent the so-called Serbian Guard to join that

21     brigade from Serbia.  You heard a person from Hrtkovci, Aleksa Ejic, who

22     had confirmed that he had gone there as a member of the Serbian Guards.

23     Crimes occurred there.  We heard two young Muslim women whose children

24     were killed, whose husbands were killed, and who were detained at

25     Boracko Lake, and they were sexually abused there over a long period of

Page 17460

 1     time, for a year or perhaps two.  I don't know how long it lasted.

 2             They appeared here in the courtroom and they assisted my defence,

 3     they assisted me with shedding light on some things.  They too thought

 4     that they had seen the Red Berets and Seseljevci at Boracko Lake.  As it

 5     turned out, they were members of that unit belonging to the Cavalry Light

 6     Brigade and that's all.

 7             You also saw a document that was signed by Krsto Savic, the head

 8     of police in Nevesinje.  He also tried to attribute some things to

 9     Seseljevci, and that Krsto Savic is notorious for the fact that he had

10     killed Radovan Radovic, a Chetnik Vojvoda, from the back, and that

11     happened in January 1998.  And then he fled to Banja Luka and for a long

12     time he was not accessible to law enforcement agencies, and then he was

13     arrested and tried in Sarajevo and convicted by the court of Bosnia and

14     Herzegovina.

15             You admitted that document of his into evidence at face value.

16     Why didn't you invite him as a witness?  He would have been a very good

17     OTP witness because he was the head of the police at Nevesinje.  He could

18     have shed a lot of light on how things transpired.  You didn't do that

19     because you don't want the truth to be known.  You want to muddy the

20     waters because you can catch most fish in muddy waters.  But you failed

21     miserably and that's why this trial is also failing miserably and this is

22     why this trial has undermined The Hague Tribunal more than anything else.

23     You have actually called witnesses that have helped the Defence.  You had

24     very high hopes about a witness and then he confirmed that Oliver Baret's

25     unit was a very disciplined unit who did not commit any crimes.  He also

Page 17461

 1     confirmed that Radovan Radovic's unit was also disciplined and had not

 2     committed any crimes.

 3             How did Radovan Radovic become a Chetnik Vojvoda?  Sometime in

 4     1993 or perhaps 1994 I visited Herzegovina.  Radovan Radovic, who had

 5     already had a unit bigger than a company, it was almost a battalion by

 6     that time, and that unit's name was Radovic's volunteers or Radovic's

 7     guards, he came and he joined the Serbian Radical Party.  Everybody in

 8     Herzegovina knew that he was a great fighter, a very capable commander.

 9     I proclaimed him a Serbian Chetnik Vojvoda.  I toured the positions of

10     his unit at the foot of Veles together with him.  It was recorded that I

11     opened fire from a heavy artillery tool from there.  One of your false

12     witnesses said that I opened fire on Mostar and then it turned out that

13     the distance between that place and Mostar is over 30 kilometres and that

14     there is a huge hill between Mostar and that place.

15             Unfortunately, I could not reach Mostar from that heavy artillery

16     tool, but maybe I did reach some of the Muslim positions from there.  I

17     sincerely hope I did.

18             So that would be almost the whole truth about the events in

19     Herzegovina.  We had a few more volunteer groups there in Kalinovik, for

20     example.  We had a somewhat larger group of volunteers.  Baret was in

21     command there as well, and I believe that in 1994 we suffered great

22     losses when ten of our volunteers were killed as a result of poor

23     synchronisation of activities among various Serbian units.  The SRS

24     volunteers were ahead of everybody else.  They started the assault and

25     Muslims -- the Muslims opened fire on them and we had a total of ten

Page 17462

 1     casualties, ten people died.

 2             You didn't even notice that we had volunteers in Kalinovik.  We

 3     had them in many other places as well, but nobody can say that a crime of

 4     any kind can be attributed to SRS volunteers.  There may have been fear

 5     among the Croats and Muslims.  They were afraid of the Serbian Chetniks,

 6     but this fear is based on the prejudices that had been nurtured for

 7     decades by the communists who portrayed the Chetniks as major criminals

 8     from the Second World War.  The OTP says the Chetniks are extremists and

 9     that I supported extremists and an extremist military or quasi military

10     organisation that relies on extremist traditions.

11             The Second World War Chetniks were not extremists during the

12     Second World War.  Those extremists were communists and these communist

13     extremists managed to grab the power, having killed around

14     200.000 people.  I cannot possibly defend all the Chetniks from the

15     Second World War.

16             I know that Vojvoda Pavle Djurisic's unit committed a crime in

17     Foca, but I do know as well that another major crime preceded this crime

18     committed by Muslim Ustashas against Serbian civilians.  That's the only

19     one crime that I know about and nobody was able to tell me about any

20     other crime committed against the Croats.  And I'm talking about

21     Dugo Polje where a unit of Mane Rokvic, numbering about 120 people,

22     killed about 100 Catholic Croats.  And these are the only two crimes,

23     serious crimes, committed by Chetniks against the Croats or Muslims

24     during World War II.  I never heard of any other crime and nobody can

25     find it, even those who hate Chetniks the most.

Page 17463

 1             On the other hand, the communist crimes are numerous.  They even

 2     are head to head with the Ustashas.  However, the Ustashas killed about

 3     1 million people, whereas according to Vladimir Dedijer, a renowned

 4     Yugoslav historian, 200.000.  And this is the result of mass shootings

 5     that the communists effected in Serbia and they shot everyone who was not

 6     perceived as favourable by the communist regime.

 7             Now, you have serious problems with facts because you are trying

 8     to combat facts, you are trying to supersede facts with purposeful lies,

 9     lies that are accusing me; however, all of your lies have burst like

10     bubbles.  You say that with my statements I was pounding people like with

11     a howitzer and that people were being killed.  You are really not normal.

12     I have a press conference in Belgrade and at the same time somebody

13     committed some crime around Zvornik or elsewhere and you establish a

14     nexus between these two events.  This is what is contained in your

15     closing argument.  This really defies any logic; it makes no sense.

16             You speak about various groups of Seseljevci, about individual

17     Seseljevci, who allegedly did something somewhere, but you're unable to

18     identify them, and I put it to you that after 26th of April there were no

19     SRS volunteers in the area of Zvornik.  You found individual Seseljevci

20     in various locations involved in real or fabricated crimes.

21             And I'm saying this because I can never trust you.  If you say

22     that a crime was committed, one cannot really take your word for it.  It

23     might have happened, it might not have happened, because you are capable

24     of inventing things because in your mind, morality and law do not go

25     together.  In a civilised world, ethics and law go hand in hand.  Dating

Page 17464

 1     back to Ancient Greece and the Roman Empire, everybody has been insisting

 2     on the connection between morality and law.  However, in your case, this

 3     causes divergences in order -- instead of approximating them, they are

 4     getting further and further apart.

 5             In your view, only what is quasi legal is legal.  Your role

 6     should be to defend international justice wherein in practice you

 7     demonstrate the opposite.  This is not what international justice should

 8     look like.  Your practice demonstrates that you are a tool in the hands

 9     of dark forces with one single perfidious task and that is to harm the

10     Serbian people and in my particular case to have me removed from the

11     political stage in any way whatsoever, either by convicting me or by

12     murdering me, you don't care.  And your masters don't care either.

13             Maybe you don't even know what your masters are planning.  You

14     are a simple instrument of globalism or mondialism of the New World Order

15     and this New World Order has demonstrated its totalitarian nature in a

16     great number of cases, its totalitarian nature.  The methodology that you

17     employ is a totalitarian one.  It is known to be used in Hitler's time

18     and in Stalin's time; you have only perfected it.  Hitler and Stalin were

19     more honest than the Americans and other globalists.  They acted more

20     openly.  You are operating in a covert way, but your goals are the same.

21             Now, I am very glad to have an opportunity to reveal your true

22     nature, your objectives, the background of your deeds, and your masters

23     and inspirators.

24             Since I feel rather tired, I think it's time now to stop for

25     today.

Page 17465

 1             JUDGE ANTONETTI: [Interpretation] I believe you must have used

 2     six hours and 30 minutes, around that time -- no, six hours and

 3     20 minutes.  You will have three hours and 40 minutes left next week.

 4             We shall reconvene, as you know, on Tuesday, at 2.15, and on

 5     Wednesday we'll be sitting as of 9.00 in the morning.  Until then, I wish

 6     you all a good weekend and we'll see you again on Tuesday.

 7                           --- Whereupon the hearing adjourned at 1.10 p.m.,

 8                           to be reconvened on Tuesday, the 20th day of

 9                           March, 2012, at 2.15 p.m.