Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/213/8618

From The Socialist newspaper, 6 July 2001

Put All The Warmongers On Trial

THE EXTRADITION of former dictator Slobodan Milosevic from Serbia to face war crimes charges in the Hague, Holland, and the drift toward civil war in the former Yugoslav republic of Macedonia, have once again thrust the region into the headlines. As the following article shows, under capitalism, there can be no peaceful nor just solution to this ongoing Balkans crisis.

LIKE MODERN-day bounty hunters Serbia's rulers have handed over Slobodan Milosevic, NATO's most wanted 'war criminal', for $1.3 billion (900 million) of Western money.

Dave Carr

Yugoslavia's deputy Prime Minister, Miroljub Labus, attending an international donors conference in Brussels, said: "We did it. Now it's your turn."

Not that many Serbs will be shedding a tear for the former dictator whose regime embezzled state funds, politically assassinated opponents, ethnically cleansed Kosovar Albanians, and whose nationalism led to the break-up of former Yugoslavia and to war.

It is these crimes that the working class of Serbia should try Milosevic for in Serbia itself. That would also serve to expose the rotten, corrupt officials, businessmen and armed forces chiefs who collaborated with Milosevic.

Although the nationalist Yugoslav federal president, Kostunica, opposed the extradition (and was excluded from the cabinet meeting which met to discuss Milosevic's fate), the pro-Western Serbian prime minister, Zoran Djindjic, had no such qualms in booking Milosevic's one-way flight aboard an RAF plane.

Ironically, Djindjic used powers inherited from Milosevic to over-ride an earlier decision of the Yugoslavian Constitutional Court (still stuffed with Milosevic-appointed judges) to suspend the extradition process.

It seems that Milosevic's departure had been carefully prepared. Was it an accident that the interior ministry discovered the bodies of ethnic Albanians, which had laid buried for two years, in a Belgrade suburb just before Milosevic's extradition?

However, the whisking away of Milosevic has triggered a collapse of Kostunica's fragile Yugoslav Federal government (made up of the coalition of anti-Milosevic parties of the Democratic Opposition of Serbia 'reformers' and the pro-Milosevic Socialist Nationalist Party) and has pitched Djindjic into a power struggle with Kostunica.

Djindjic wants to speed up market economy 'reforms' and the process of integration with the European Union.

New federal elections could result in Montenegrin nationalists (who boycotted the last election) winning a majority of seats in the junior republic and attempting to split away from the rump Yugoslav federation. This in turn could provoke a military response from the large Serbian population in Montenegro leading to civil war with all the consequences for the region as a whole.

Bankruptcy

DJINDJIC DESPERATELY needs Western cash. The economy is bankrupt, with a huge foreign debt of $12.2 billion. Industry is only operating at 50% of capacity and inflation has increased to 80%.

But $1.3 billion represents a drop in the ocean compared to the estimated $29.4 billion economic damage from NATO bombing and the Kosova war.

The Serbian government is privatising $150 million of state assets to reduce its foreign debt and to compensate the pre-1945 owners of companies nationalised by Tito's 'Communists'!

The first to go will be the Boecin cement factory to French construction group Lafarge. Other tantalising morsels for foreign capitalists will be the arms manufacturer Zastava (makers of the Yugo car) and JAT, the national airline.

Western crimes

THE HYPOCRISY of the Western leaders over Milosevic's war crimes reeks to high heaven.

These are the people, including Tony Blair, who sanctioned the 57 days of air attacks in the 1999 Kosova war which killed hundreds of Serbian civilians and Kosovan Albanian refugees. They also backed the late Croatian nationalist dictator Franjo Tudjman and Bosnia's Alija Izetbegovic whose militias also committed war crimes.

And then of course there's 'Mr Hypocrisy' himself - new Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw (who's having a 'local difficulty' in Macedonia right now - see opposite).

As Home Secretary, Straw prevented the extradition of former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet from Britain to Spain to face 'crimes against humanity' charges. Instead, he allowed the instigator of Chile's 1973 'Caravan of Death' to return home on health grounds.

Milosevic is threatening to spill the beans at his trial on the secret deals between the West and himself to halt the civil war in Bosnia and which kept him in power. According to The Sunday Telegraph his lawyers will implicate the former foreign secretaries Douglas (now Lord) Hurd, Lord Carrington and Lord Owen.

Tory foreign secretary Douglas Hurd, who went on to become deputy chairman of NatWest Markets, acted to secure a deal with Milosevic to privatise Serbia's telecoms service.

With US money and 'advisers' the Bosnian Moslem army drove out Serbs from Krajina, committing many war crimes. Richard Holbrooke the US diplomat then brokered the Dayton Accord with Milosevic to end the fighting in Bosnia.

During the 1990s French governments also continued behind the scenes negotiations with Milosevic.

Workers in Serbia and the West should demand the publication of all the secret deals and treaties for which the people of the Balkans paid for dearly.

Workers' solution

THE SERBIAN working class demonstrated its potential power to change society in its own interests last October when it overthrew Milosevic after five days of strikes and demonstrations.

To escape the current crisis it once again should apply this power to sweep aside the 'market reformers' of Kostunica and Djindjic. The working class urgently needs to build a mass party armed with a socialist programme.

Such a movement, raising the task of overthrowing capitalism, could sweep aside the profiteers and nationalists and unite the whole of the Balkans working class and rebuild the shattered economies.

A democratic socialist society would provide the material basis to peaceably resolve the outstanding national antagonisms throughout the region.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 6 July 2001:

Strike Back At School Sell-Offs

TGWU conference: Free The Funds

Icy Blasts Of Recession

Wales: Tuition Fees Damned - Now Abolish Them!

Capitalism's Bitter Coffee

Put All The Warmongers On Trial

Northern Ireland: New Sectarian Dangers - Workers' Response Needed

Hackney Bin Workers Score Quick Victory


 

Home   |   The Socialist 6 July 2001   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

Macedonia:

triangleMacedonia Slides Toward Civil War

War:

triangleA world in crisis, ripe for revolution

triangleCaerphilly Socialist Party: Are we heading for an era of war?

triangleComprehensive account of bloody conflict

triangleKurdish referendum declared illegal

Serbia:

triangleHungary's xenophobic right-wing government

triangleRefugees brutalised by thug governments

Capitalism:

triangleTrump's incendiary Jerusalem statement reignites Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Balkans:

triangleSalford Socialist Party: 1992 - War in the Balkans

Working class:

triangleLabour 'purge' furore really just democracy

International

International

13/12/17

Israel

Trump's incendiary Jerusalem statement reignites Israeli-Palestinian conflict

13/12/17

CWI

A world in crisis, ripe for revolution

6/12/17

US

Trump's tax plan: Robin Hood in reverse

6/12/17

Ireland

Irish capitalist state: rotten to the core

6/12/17

Women

Fighting sexism, violence and capitalism - an international struggle

22/11/17

US

Trump's tax attacks

22/11/17

Australia

Australia: massive yes vote for marriage equality

21/11/17

Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe: Mugabe gone - but his regime remains in power

15/11/17

Minneapolis

USA: Historic vote for Ginger Jentzen campaign in Minneapolis

10/11/17

Minneapolis

US: Historic vote for Ginger Jentzen campaign in Minneapolis

8/11/17

Sweden

Sweden: 'Revolution2017' success

8/11/17

Spain

Spain: Madrid rally celebrates October revolution

8/11/17

Minneapolis

US: Minneapolis Socialist chimes with voters

8/11/17

Ireland

Ireland: rail workers demand share of 'recovery'

8/11/17

Ireland

Ireland: dangerous ideas for the ruling class

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle13 Dec Support the Crossrail Woolwich walkout

triangle8 Dec Local government pay: fight for the 5% claim, fully funded

triangle6 Dec Strikers rally in Liverpool

triangle6 Dec Corbyn's Labour can defeat Tories with socialist programme

triangle5 Dec Victory at Glenfield shows people power can save our NHS

triangle5 Dec Labour council Blairites deselected

triangle30 Nov Victory: Glenfield Children's Heart Centre saved!

More ...

triangle13 Dec Caerphilly Socialist Party: Are we heading for an era of war?

triangle14 Dec Wakefield Socialist Party: Universal Credit - the Tories' latest assault on the poor

triangle18 Dec Leeds Socialist Party: Religion and Socialism

triangle19 Dec Bristol North Socialist Party: Christmas social

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

December 2017

November 2017

October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2