Wednesday, December 3, 2008

#534 INTL - High Representative Lajcak: Biased and Unprofessional

Postovani poslanici Parlamenta BiH,

evo smo prijavili Lajcaka njegovim pretpostavljenim zato sto je "neprofesionalan i pristrasan". Njegov posao nije da navija ni za jednu stranu, nego da se ponasa prema svome mandatu, a to je, prema pravilima igre.

Nikoga ne interesuje sta on zeli. Bitno je jedino sta on ima pravo da radi, a on nema pravo da vrsi ikakav pritisak na bilo kojeg poslanika.

Nazalost, vi to vec i znate, ali vam dobro dodje taj navodni pritisak "medjunarodne zajednice" kao opravdanje za izdaju.

Mi znamo da ne morate nista izglasati, da je iskljucivo svaki poslanik odgovoran za svoj glas.

Slijedi pismo koje smo uputili Lajcakovim sefovima ukljucujuci i sve Evropske Parlamentarce.

Nemamo vremena da prevodimo pismo, da bi i vama stiglo na vrijeme, samo cemo ga ukratko prepricati.



- Lajcak je pokazao svoj neprofesionalizam i pristrasnost jer se mijesa u rad Skupstine BiH, mimo svoga mandata, buduci da je na dnevnom redu usvajanje TRAJNIH, a ne privremenih zakona.

- Lajcak, je pokazao neprofesionalizam i pristrasnost jer se mijesa sada, a nije se mijesao kada je imao pravo, da implementira vec usvojenu istinsku Evropsku reformu, nego je dozvolio da se ona ponovo pregovara.

- Lajcak je svjestan, sto je i sam izjavio, da je Zakon o drzavljanstvu diskriminirajuci jer po njemu zrtve cetnickog terora trebaju uskoro izgubiti BH drzavljasntvo. Ipak je odbio da ga promjeni, sto je imao pravo po Bonskim ovlastima.


Slijedi pismo u originalu na Engleskom kako smo ga poslali na nasu mailing listu za inostranstvo.


National Congress of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina


No. 534

March 17, 2008


1. High Representative Miroslav Lajcak: Biased and Unprofessional


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1. High Representative Lajcak: Biased and Unprofessional

By Tarik Borogovac, Boston USA

The regular readers of this column know that until very recently we wholeheartedly supported High Representative Miroslav Lajcak. The Office of High Representative (OHR) wields the Bonn powers -- the only tool that can overcome the crippling ethnic and entity vetoes, which continue to ensure failure and misery in Bosnia. Mr. Lajcak, made strong statements that he would use all the tools at his disposal to push the reforms that strengthen Bosnia's state institutions, and to lead us into the EU. This was a very welcome attitude, especially since his predecessor, Mr. Christian Schwartz-Schilling, was criticized for employing a philosophy of non-interference, and allowing inflammatory statements to go unchallenged.

In the recent episode about parliamentary procedures, Mr. Lajcak did make a good decision, and prevailed in the face of strong opposition to it.

But we now recognize that we were wrong about Mr. Lajcak, after all, and we apologize to our readers. Mr. Lajcak has recently made several questionable decisions, and even a few very shocking public statements, which reveal lack of professionalism. In fact, some of his statements show personal bias and favoritism toward Mr. Dodik, Premier of the entity "Republic of the Serbs" (RS).

Let us first consider some of his statements made on March 14, and reported by the daily "Nezavisne Novine" from Banja Luka.

1. Mr. Lajcak stated that Mr. Dodik is the strongest political leader in Bosnia, and that he does not see any readiness of politicians in Sarajevo (i.e. Bosniak and Croat) to use the good influence of Mr. Dodik.

Our comment: Mr. Lajcak must have been particularly impressed by Mr. Dodik's strength just last week, when Mr. Dodik forbade the use of the Bonn powers
-- as we wrote in our last column. There has been no response by the OHR to that "decision" by Mr. Dodik, and it seems that we know why.

2. Mr. Lajcak also stated that Mr. Dodik has safeguarded peace and stability in Bosnia after the Kosovo independence declaration.

Our comment: Clearly, Mr. Lajcak is ignoring how Mr. Dodik's RS Government and the RS Parliament have responded to the Kosovo independence by making a law which states that the RS can declare independence if it chooses to, which is clearly in violation of the Dayton agreement, and could have caused, and still might cause violence. Contrast Mr. Lajcak's response with Mr. Schwartz-Schilling who was criticized for simply not punishing rhetoric about the RS right to secession to get out of hand in the media. Mr. Lajcak actually allows laws to be passed that state the same thing.

3. In the same interview Mr. Lajcak said: "Dodik is right when he says that he would like his coalition partners to recognize the RS, because they have the right to say: 'Here, we recognize the RS, and now enough of the talk about referendum and secession, because those are all children's stories, and we all know that.' If it is politically unacceptable for Bosniak politicians to say that: 'the RS is a reality' -- then something is wrong.
There is no secession, and everyone knows that, and they are just fooling the people".

Our comment: If such a recognition is so meaningless, why is Dodik insisting that the BiH Parliament must recognize the RS, and threatening with the referendum for RS independence otherwise? Why do Bosniak politicians feel that it is "politically unacceptable" to recognize the RS?

Dodik wants the formal recognition precisely because it would change the status of the RS significantly, cementing its legal existence and even allowing it to secede. Namely, the RS is currently an ethnic territory created by an international agreement, the Dayton agreement, as a concession to Milosevic and Karadzic. The Dayton agreement was never ratified by the Bosnian parliament, and its Annex IV, the Dayton Constitution, was never formally approved as a new constitution of the country. The implementation of the Annex IV constitution in Bosnia only depends on the good will and cooperation of all sides. Bosnia has the right to withdraw from Dayton, and so effectively end the RS at any time. If the RS violates the Dayton Agreement, for example by declaring independence, it will negate the only basis for its own existence. On the other hand, if the Bosnian Parliament confirms Annex IV as the Bosnian constitution, that act would replace Dayton as the basis for the RS, and failure to fulfill Dayton obligations could no longer put the RS into question. Dodik needs the recognition of the RS because without it, the talk of independence truly is just "childrens' stories". If the RS gets that recognition in the Bosnian Parliament, only then would the talk of a referendum and secession become serious.

Bosniak politicians do not dare to recognize the RS in parliament, because the RS is the most important issue for the Bosniak population, and it really would be political suicide to recognize it openly. Among Bosniaks, the existence of the RS is a very real reminder of the genocide committed to create it and ethnically cleanse it of Bosniaks and Croats. Srebrenica is our Aushwitz -- a very painful example in the Bosniak consciousness of the massive injustice that the RS military and police killed thousands of Bosniaks, and in that manner officially created Serb territories. The only reason that the Bosniak politicians ever get elected is because they claim that (A) they never confirmed the existence of the RS in Parliament, and (B) they fight for its abolishment. Although claim (B) is dubious, claim (A) is still technically correct.

Lajcak's argument that "the RS is a reality" is bunk. For a few years, Nazi Germany's occupation of Slovakia was a reality, also, but it was neither legal nor moral -- just like the RS. In connection to Nazi Germany, it has been famously said that forcing the victims of genocide to live with and accept the results of genocide is also an act of genocide. For Lajcak to say that "the Republic of the Serbs", and Srebrenica in it, is a reality that Bosniaks should accept, is morally indefensible.

4. In a speech the day before, on March 13, in Foca, RS, Mr. Lajcak denounced those who are blocking the passage of the new police laws in Parliament, calling them "guilty" of keeping Bosnia outside of the EU, and that their action shows an "unseen brazenness". Contrasting these statements to the manner in which he simply accepted the scrapping of the previous attempt to reform the police, at Mr. Dodik's request, shows partiality.

A little more context is necessary to make this point. The police law drafts, over which Mr. Lajcak is so strongly pressuring lawmakers now, do not respect the very three principles that the EU has set. For example, the EU requires state control of local police forces, and of the budget, yet these proposals instead would only create weak bodies that only coordinate (not control) the entity police structures. We note here that some parliamentarians from the SDA and SDP parties have opposed these laws not only because they do not fulfill any of the three principles, but because they also represent a violation of principle (A) above, i.e. they are an implicit recognition of the entity police forces, including the RS police, which committed the Srebrenica genocide.

In contrast, recall that during Mr. Ashdown's time, the parliaments of both entities and of the state passed a police reform law, under which a commission of police experts was formed, and was led by EUPM chief Vincenzo Coppola, to make binding decisions on the future police structures in Bosnia. After more than a year of work, the commission gave its binding decision, which was comprehensive and did truly respect the three principles, but which Mr. Dodik did not like. Mr. Lajcak consented to Mr. Dodik's request that the original deal should be renegotiated, setting the process back for years.

5. Finally, we have often written about the citizenship law that will (in 2011) take Bosnian citizenship away from hundreds of thousands of citizens, mostly Bosniaks and Croats who have settled in western countries after being "cleansed" from areas that are now in the RS. Recognizing the simple truth that the RS politicians like Mr. Dodik have not allowed the changing of this law because they have an interest in taking those citizenships away, the ethnic Croat member of the Bosnian Presidency Zeljko Komsic asked, in a letter, the high representative to modify that law using the Bonn powers. According to Mr. Komsic, Mr. Lajcak responded that he is aware that the citizenship law is discriminatory, but that he will not change it.



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