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3,000+ IMAGINARY “SERB VICTIMS” IN VILLAGES AROUND SREBRENICA

March 6, 2009 4 comments
SERBS FILE LAWSUIT AGAINST U.N. TO DIMINISH SIGNIFICANCE OF SREBRENICA GENOCIDE

Trying to gain wider media exposure and promote their already discredited version of the number of individual Serb casualties around Srebrenica, a group of Bosnian Serbs based in the Netherlands have filed a lawsuit at the Dutch District Court in The Hague claiming the United Nations and the Netherlands failed to protect them around Srebrenica during the 1992-1995 war.

As a result of military operations conducted against the Bosniak Muslim civilians in and around Srebrenica (1992-1995), Serbs suffered 151 civilian casualties. Now, in order to justify the genocide committed against the Bosniak Muslim population of Srebrenica, Serbian nationalists propagate grossly inflated claims that over 3,000 Serb civilians were murdered around Srebrenica. Milivoje Ivanisevic (background), who came up with this number, is a Srebrenica genocide denier himself. Ivanisevic’s claim that there are about “3,000+ Serb victims” have been discredited by the International Criminal Tribunal (source), Human Rights Watch (source), and Bosnia’s State-level Research and Documentation Center (source).

In 1993, the U.N. forces were sent to Srebrenica to protect Bosniaks (Muslims) from Serbs, not the other way around. During the Bosnian war, 1992-1995, Serbs kept Srebrenica under deadly siege and terrorized Bosniak civilians in the most horrible ways. In order to prolong the suffering of innocent Bosniak Muslim victims from 1992-1995, Serbs in villages around Srebrenica barricaded Muslim women, children, and elderly men in abandoned houses and then set them on fire alive (click here to see photos of Muslim victims around Srebrenica). Nonetheless to remind our readers that Serbs started killing Bosniak Muslim civilians around Srebrenica in 1992 and they never stopped until they committed genocide against the Bosniak Muslim population of Srebrenica in July 1995.

The latest lawsuit against the U.N. was filed by Stephen Karganovic (aka: Stefan Karganovic), who happens to be a founder of the Srebrenica genocide denial NGO known as “The Historical Project Srebrenica” (Historijski Projekat Srebrenica). He is also a close associate of Dr. Darko Trifunovic (background) and Milivoje Ivanisevic (background) – both of them discredited Srebrenica genocide deniers.

Karganovic uses careful words in the media and passes himself as a man who does not deny “Srebrenica massacre.” As many Srebrenica genocide deniers do, Karganovic accepts the term “massacre,” but refuses to acknowledge the proper term – Genocide. For him, there was no genocide against the Bosniak population of Srebrenica.

Recently, he stated: “Our parallel task is to investigate the allegations of genocide against Moslem prisoners and correct the record on that score.” Note that he used the term “allegations” in referring to the Srebrenica genocide.

“All we want to achieve is that the Serb victims from around Srebrenica get the same attention as the Muslim victims in Srebrenica,” he said. In other words, Karganovic’s purpose is to equate the genocide perpetrated against the Bosniak Muslim population of Srebrenica with individual war crimes against the Serbs.

Serb sources maintain that casualties and losses during the period prior to the creation of the safe area gave rise to Serb demands for revenge against the Bosniaks based in Srebrenica. The ARBiH raids are presented as a key motivating factor for the July 1995 genocide. This view is echoed by international sources including the 2002 report commissioned by the Dutch government on events leading to the fall of Srebrenica (the NIOD report [see Answer to Question #10]). However these sources also cite misleading figures for the number of Serb casualties in the region. The NIOD report, for instance, repeats the erroneous claim that the raid on Kravica resulted in the total annihilation of its population. Many consider these efforts to explain the motivation behind the Srebrenica massacre are merely revisionist attempts to justify the genocide. To quote the report to the UN Secretary-General on the Fall of Srebrenica:

“Even though this accusation is often repeated by international sources, there is no credible evidence to support it… The Serbs repeatedly exaggerated the extent of the raids out of Srebrenica as a pretext for the prosecution of a central war aim: to create a geographically contiguous and ethnically pure territory along the Drina, while freeing their troops to fight in other parts of the country. The extent to which this pretext was accepted at face value by international actors and observers reflected the prism of ‘moral equivalency’ through which the conflict in Bosnia was viewed by too many for too long.” – UN Report on Srebrenica

According to Human Rights Watch, the ultra-nationalist Serbian Radical Party “launched an aggressive campaign to prove that Muslims had committed crimes against thousands of Serbs in the area” which “was intended to diminish the significance of the July 1995 crime.”

Serbian media is also circulating gruesome photo forgeries alleging they represent Serb ‘victims’ around Srebrenica. Take a look at a sample photo forgery of alleged “Serb victim” around Srebrenica at this link.

A press briefing by the ICTY Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) dated 6 July 2005 noted that the number of Serb deaths in the region alleged by the Serbian authorities had increased from 1,400 to 3,500, a figure the OTP stated “[does] not reflect the reality.” The briefing cited previous accounts:

“The Republika Srpska’s Commission for War Crimes gave the number of Serb victims in the municipalities of Bratunac, Srebrenica and Skelani as 995; 520 in Bratunac and 475 in Srebrenica. The Chronicle of Our Graves by Milivoje Ivanisevic, president of the Belgrade Center for Investigating Crimes Committed against the Serbs, estimates the number of people killed at around 1,200. For the Honorable Cross and Golden Freedom, a book published by the RS Ministry of Interior, referred to 641 Serb victims in the Bratunac-Srebrenica-Skelani region.

The accuracy of these numbers is challenged: the OTP noted that although Ivanisevic’s book estimated that around 1200 Serbs were killed, personal details were only available for 624 victims. The validity of labeling some of the casualties as “victims” is also contested: studies have found a significant majority of military casualties compared to civilian casualties. This is in line with the nature of the conflict—Serb casualties died in raids by Bosniak forces on outlying villages used as military outposts for attacks on Srebrenica (many of which had been ethnically cleansed of their Bosniak majority population in 1992).

For example the village of Kravica was attacked by Bosniak forces on Orthodox Christmas Day, 7 January 1993. Some Serb sources such as Ivanisevic allege that the village’s 353 inhabitants were “virtually completely destroyed”. In fact, the VRS’ own internal records state that 46 Serbs died in the Kravica attack: 35 soldiers and 11 civilians, while the ICTY Prosecutor’s Office’s investigation of casualties on 7 and 8 January in Kravica and the surrounding villages found that 43 people were killed, of whom 13 were obviously civilians. Nevertheless the event continues to be cited by Serb sources as the key example of heinous crimes committed by Bosniak forces around Srebrenica.

As for the destruction and casualties in the villages of Kravica, Siljkovići, Bjelovac, Fakovići and Sikirić, the judgment states that the prosecution failed to present convincing evidence that the Bosnian forces were responsible for them, because the Serb forces used artillery in the fighting in those villages. In the case of the village of Bjelovac, Serbs even used the warplanes.” – Office of the United Nations Prosecutor

The most up-to-date analysis of Serb casualties in the region comes from the Sarajevo-based Research and Documentation Center, a non-partisan institution with a multiethnic staff, whose data have been collected, processed, checked, compared and evaluated by international team of experts. The RDC’s extensive review of casualty data found that Serb casualties in the Bratunac municipality amounted to 119 civilians and 424 soldiers. It also established that although the 383 Serb victims buried in the Bratunac military cemetery are presented as casualties of ARBiH units from Srebrenica, 139 (more than one third of the total) had fought and died elsewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Bosnian Book of the Dead, which was backed up by international experts (including Ewa Tabeau, head of the Demographic Unit research team of the U.N. war crimes tribunal in The Hague), lists 151 Serb civilian victims.

RECOMMENDED READING:
United Nations Srebrenica Report (1999) – Online PDF version available in 6 languages.
Srebrenica Numbers – Quick Facts

Editorial Reminder: All content on our blog is free to be republished unless otherwise noted. Please circulate and translate in other languages.

PHOTO FORGERIES OF SERB ‘VICTIMS’ AROUND SREBRENICA USED TO JUSTIFY SREBRENICA GENOCIDE

December 1, 2008 Comments off

The assault on truth and memory continues as Srebrenica genocide denial activists create digitally manipulated images (aka: photo forgeries) of grossly inflated numbers of Serb casualties around Srebrenica as “evidence” to justify genocide of at least 8,000 Bosniaks at Srebrenica…

In order to justify Srebrenica genocide in which 8,000 – 10,000 Bosniak (Muslim) civilians and POWs lost their lives, Serbian media is circulating gruesome photo forgeries claiming they represent Serb ‘victims’ around Srebrenica. These types of fake photos were produced by Serbian right-wing nationalist sources close to Milivoje Ivanisevic who is one of the most vocal Srebrenica genocide deniers. Take a look at a sample photo forgery below (click on the photo for higher resolution) and follow red arrows. This fake photo – with forged areas being visible even to a naked eye – represents a shameful piece of Srebrenica genocide denial propaganda used to spread hatred and justification of genocide against Bosniaks (Muslims) at Srebrenica.

CLOSE UP: You’re looking at a photo forgery of a non-existent Serbian victim around Srebrenica used in Milivoje Ivanisevic’s crusade to deny Srebrenica genocide. Click photo for a higher resolution, then follow red arrows to see image manipulated areas done by amateur image designer(s). These areas are clearly visible to a naked eye. People who continue promoting this type of hoax should be ashamed of themselves. They should also get a basic Photoshop training as their image manipulation skills are despicable.

First thing you will notice in the above photo is that one part of the image was cut out out (lower right corner side below skull). The cut out stretches even above the skull where you can notice a straight white line (most likely done by a paintbrush tool available in commercial image manipulation software programs like Photoshop or even in some free open source programs like GIMP). The top left corner of this image was manipulated by Blur / Sharpen Tool and Smudge Tool – you can notice brush movements visible to a naked eye and even forming a line next to the ladder. Now, look at the bottom part of the ladder and you will notice a virtual rung or step added as a blurred straight line. The skull was carved from a different image and re-inserted with color noise and bad image cuts around this photo being clearly visible. What appears to be skull smoking ‘cigar’ is actually a white dot. Keep studying this image and you will find even more faked elements.

PHOTO ABOVE: Actual photo forgery of non-existent Serb victim around Srebrenica. This hoax photo is circulated by ultra-nationalist Serbian circles and hosted by Serbianna web site in a section titled: “Srebrenica Massacre: A Photo Story.” Serbianna describes this image forgery as a photo of “the decapitated head of Bosnian Serb farmer Pero Makic, who was executed by Bosnian Muslim/Croat forces in the northeastern Bosnian city of Brcko.” Of course, Brcko is nowhere near Srebrenica, but the photo is promoted in Serbianna’s section showing so called “Bosnian Muslim atrocities in Srebrenica.” The section contains about 30 images of Bosnian Serb victims who died all over Bosnia, but they are conveniently described as victims of the so called “Muslim Terror” around Srebrenica. The fact is that many, if not most, of Serb civilian casualties in Bosnia were actually victims of Serb Army’s heavy artillery attacks on Bosnian cities. In Sarajevo alone, as a result of the Bosnian Serb Army’s shelling and sniper attacks, over 10,000 residents (of all nationalities) lost their lives – including more than 1,500 children.

OTHER EXAMPLES OF SERBIAN PHOTO MANIPULATIONS REGARDING SREBRENICA

PHOTO ABOVE: Serbian nationalist newspaper “Glas Javnosti” misused the above photo of Bosniak Muslim victims by portraying it as a mass grave of Serbs. What you see is a a mass grave of Srebrenica genocide victims (Bosniak Muslims) in a village of SNAGOVO during their exhumation in July 2007 as confirmed by the International Commission for Missing Persons (ICMP) and FONET (Serbian agency selling Associated Press photos). The above photo features ICMP forensic expert Sharna Daley of London UK. This kind of propaganda can be only produced by the sickest minds in order to misinform the public; and this is exactly what radical Serbian nationalists have been doing for the past 15 years. Read more here.

PHOTO ABOVE: These innocent victims of Bosnian Serb terrorism, Predrag Sekulovic (7) and Danka (4) Sekulovic, along with their parents Ranko Sekulovic and Radenka Sekulovic, where killed on Sep. 13, 1992 when their parent’s truck came on an anti-tank mine, which was placed by the Bosnian Serb Army in the village of Bakic on the road to Foca to block communication between Muslim villages in largely Bosniak Muslim populated Eastern Bosnia (Podrinje). Even Milivoje Ivanisevic, a Srebrenica genocide denier who circulated these photos, wrote in his book (“The Chronicle of Our Graves“) that Sekulovic family were victims of a landmine. However, these innocent children were conveniently branded as the victims of “Muslim terror” in Srebrenica, and their photos were repeatedly featured on Srebrenica genocide denial web sites to justify genocide of Bosniaks in Srebrenica. It is important to note that these children were not even from Srebrenica. It is equally important to note that in Sarajevo alone, over 1,500 children of all ethnicities were killed by the Bosnian Serb Army that used air-modified bombs to bombard Sarajevo citizens. More about Sekulovic family victims here.

Related research:
Srebrenica Genocide Denial: Milivoje Ivanisevic’s Disturbed Mind of Genocide Denial
Srebrenica Genocide Facts: Responding to the Growing Assault on Truth and Memory
Serbian Media Propaganda: Grossly Inflated Numbers of Bosnian Serb Casualties Around Srebrenica

GROSSLY INFLATED NUMBERS OF SERB “VICTIMS” AROUND SREBRENICA USED TO JUSTIFY GENOCIDE OF BOSNIAKS

July 10, 2008 1 comment
In response to the justification of Srebrenica Genocide by Serbian ultra-nationalist activists.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
[Updated Version 18:00 p.m.]

Srebrenica genocide claimed at least 8,000 Bosniak (Muslim) lives – men, children, and elderly – who were summarily executed, dumped into mass graves, then relocated to the secondary mass graves to hide the crime. Many genocide victims were dumped into the Drina river and will likely never be found.

Every year around this time, Serbian ultra-nationalist media actively promotes grossly inflated number of 3,000+ “Serb victims” around Srebrenica to justify genocide of more than 8,000 Bosniaks in Srebrenica. Here is what the public should know:

FACTS: In an attempt to justify genocide of more than 8,000 Bosniaks, 151 Serb civilian victims around Srebrenica were grossly inflated to a number of 3,000 by Serbian radical nationalist Milivoje Ivanisevic.

In order to justify Srebrenica genocide, Serbian nationalists propagate grossly inflated claims that over 3,000 Serb civilians were murdered around Srebrenica. Milivoje Ivanisevic, who came up with this number, is a Srebrenica genocide denier himself. Ivanisevic’s claims were discredited by the International Criminal Tribunal, Serbia’s Human Rights Watch, and Bosnia’s State-level Research and Documentation Center.

It is agreed by all sides that Serbs suffered a number of casualties during military forays led by Naser Oric, considering that Serbs used surrounding villages around Srebrenica to launch attacks on Srebrenica. The controversy over the nature and number of the casualties came to a head in 2005, the 10th anniversary of the massacre. According to Human Rights Watch, the ultra-nationalist Serbian Radical Party “launched an aggressive campaign to prove that Muslims had committed crimes against thousands of Serbs in the area” which “was intended to diminish the significance of the July 1995 crime.”

A press briefing by the ICTY Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) dated 6 July 2005 noted that the number of Serb deaths in the region alleged by the Serbian authorities had increased from 1,400 to 3,500, a figure the OTP stated “[does] not reflect the reality.” The briefing cited previous accounts:

The Republika Srpska’s Commission for War Crimes gave the number of Serb victims in the municipalities of Bratunac, Srebrenica and Skelani as 995; 520 in Bratunac and 475 in Srebrenica. The Chronicle of Our Graves by Milivoje Ivanisevic, president of the Belgrade Center for Investigating Crimes Committed against the Serbs, estimates the number of people killed at around 1,200. For the Honorable Cross and Golden Freedom, a book published by the RS Ministry of Interior, referred to 641 Serb victims in the Bratunac-Srebrenica-Skelani region.

The accuracy of these numbers is challenged: the OTP noted that although Ivanisevic’s book estimated that around 1200 Serbs were killed, personal details were only available for 624 victims. The validity of labeling some of the casualties as “victims” is also contested: studies have found a significant majority of military casualties compared to civilian casualties. This is in line with the nature of the conflict—Serb casualties died in raids by Bosniak forces on outlying villages used as military outposts for attacks on Srebrenica (many of which had been ethnically cleansed of their Bosniak majority population in 1992).

For example the village of Kravica was attacked by Bosniak forces on Orthodox Christmas Day, 7 January 1993. Some Serb sources such as Ivanisevic allege that the village’s 353 inhabitants were “virtually completely destroyed”. In fact, the VRS’ own internal records state that 46 Serbs died in the Kravica attack: 35 soldiers and 11 civilians, while the ICTY Prosecutor’s Office’s investigation of casualties on 7 and 8 January in Kravica and the surrounding villages found that 43 people were killed, of whom 13 were obviously civilians. Nevertheless the event continues to be cited by Serb sources as the key example of heinous crimes committed by Bosniak forces around Srebrenica.

As for the destruction and casualties in the villages of Kravica, Siljkovići, Bjelovac, Fakovići and Sikirić, the judgment states that the prosecution failed to present convincing evidence that the Bosnian forces were responsible for them, because the Serb forces used artillery in the fighting in those villages. In the case of the village of Bjelovac, Serbs even used the warplanes.

The most up-to-date analysis of Serb casualties in the region comes from the Sarajevo-based Research and Documentation Center, a non-partisan institution with a multiethnic staff, whose data have been collected, processed, checked, compared and evaluated by international team of experts. The RDC’s extensive review of casualty data found that Serb casualties in the Bratunac municipality amounted to 119 civilians and 424 soldiers. It also established that although the 383 Serb victims buried in the Bratunac military cemetery are presented as casualties of ARBiH units from Srebrenica, 139 (more than one third of the total) had fought and died elsewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Bosnian Book of the Dead, which was backed down by international experts (including Ewa Tabeau, head of the Demographic Unit research team of the U.N. war crimes tribunal in The Hague), lists 151 Serb civilian victims.

The Serbs never demilitarized around Srebrenica. The Bosnian Government had entered into demilitarization agreements with the Bosnian Serbs. On 21 April 1993, the UNPROFOR issued press release saying that the process of demilitarization of Bosnian defenders of Srebrenica had been a success. According to the Agreement, the Serbs should withdraw their heavy weapons before the Bosniaks gave up their weapons. The Serbs refused to demilitarize. They never honored their part of agreement. Instead, Serb military and paramilitary troops continued using surrounding Serb villages as a base for attacks on (and brutal siege of) Srebrenica.

Serb sources maintain that casualties and losses during the period prior to the creation of the safe area gave rise to Serb demands for revenge against the Bosniaks based in Srebrenica. The ARBiH raids are presented as a key motivating factor for the July 1995 genocide. This view is echoed by international sources including the 2002 report commissioned by the Dutch government on events leading to the fall of Srebrenica (the NIOD report). However these sources also cite misleading figures for the number of Serb casualties in the region. The NIOD report, for instance, repeats the erroneous claim that the raid on Kravica resulted in the total annihilation of its population. Many consider these efforts to explain the motivation behind the Srebrenica massacre are merely revisionist attempts to justify the genocide. To quote the report to the UN Secretary-General on the Fall of Srebrenica:

Even though this accusation is often repeated by international sources, there is no credible evidence to support it… The Serbs repeatedly exaggerated the extent of the raids out of Srebrenica as a pretext for the prosecution of a central war aim: to create a geographically contiguous and ethnically pure territory along the Drina, while freeing their troops to fight in other parts of the country. The extent to which this pretext was accepted at face value by international actors and observers reflected the prism of ‘moral equivalency’ through which the conflict in Bosnia was viewed by too many for too long.

SERB VICTIMS OF SERBIAN GOVERNMENT PROPAGANDA

June 9, 2008 1 comment

PHOTO CAPTION: These innocent victims of Serbian terrorism, Predrag (7) and Danka (4) Sekulovic, where killed on Sep. 13, 1992 when their parent’s truck came on an anti-tank mine, which was placed by the Bosnian Serb Army in the village of Bakic on the road to Foca to block communication between largely Muslim villages in the area. These innocent children were conveniently branded as the victims of “Muslim terror,” and their photos were repeatedly featured on Srebrenica genocide denial web sites to justify genocide against the Bosniaks. It is important to note that these children are not even from Srebrenica. It is equally important to note that in Sarajevo alone, over 1,500 children of all ethnicities were killed by the Bosnian Serb Army that used air-modified bombs to bombard Sarajevo citizens.

Serbian activists have been supplying the internet with photos of slain individuals claiming to be Serb victims of the so called “Muslim terror” around Srebrenica. These activists are no strangers to controversy, as they are also known to misuse photos of dead Bosniaks – who were slaughtered in neighbouring Muslim villages around Srebrenica – and portray them as “Serb victims.”

In order to justify Srebrenica genocide, the Serbian government propaganda – under the leadership of right-wing nationalist Milivoje Ivanisevic – claimed that over 3,000 Serb civilians were murdered around Srebrenica. Throughout the internet, followers of this denial ‘cult’ have been posting and re-posting same old photos of Serbian civilians and soldiers who died throughout of Bosnia-Herzegovina and attributing their deaths to the crimes of “Muslims of Srebrenica.” Ivanisevic, who inspired this movement, is well known as an unrepentant Srebrenica genocide denier; we wrote about his distortions of facts extensively (part 1, part 2, part 3).

These types of propagandists will do anything to prove their point, even if that means misusing the photos of slaughtered Bosniak Muslim civilians. Recently, we reported the case of a Serbian nationalist newspaper misusing the photos of Bosniak Muslim victims by presenting them as photos of Serb victims of the so called “Muslim-Croat terror” (more info). But, they not only misusing photos of Bosniak victims of genocide – they also misuse photos of individual war crimes against the Bosnian Serb civilians. The saddest example of such marketing practice includes photos of two Bosnian Serb children, Predrag (7) and Danka Sekulovic (4) who were killed on Sep. 13, 1992 when their parent’s truck came on an anti-tank mine, which was placed by the Bosnian Serb Army in the village of Bakic on the road to Foca to block communication between largely Muslim villages in the area.

The image you see on top of this article was reproduced from the book titled: “The Eradication of Serbs in Bosnia and Herzegovina” and sold by anti-Semitic Serbian Defense League web site which claims that Jews committed crimes against the Serbs by “…using ‘holocaust’ analogy to deceive countries in which they live into letting them use their resources in commission of crimes world-wide.” No comment needed to such offensive anti-Semitic allegations.

It is important to know that the Serb allegations of 3,000+ “Serb victims of Muslim terror in Srebrenica” have been discredited on numerous occasions by the International Criminal Tribunal (more info), the internationally-backed Research and Documentation Center (more info), and even Serbia’s Human Rights Watch (more info). Not to mention another allegation centred around alleged beheading of a Serb soldier Rade Rogic, who turned out to be Bosnian soldier, Mustafa Hadzipasic, who was ambushed, beheaded and videotaped by the Serbian (para) military thugs during operation Sanski Most in 1995. The “Rade Rogic beheading” video is still extensively used by ultra-nationalist Serb web sites to justify Srebrenica genocide (even though the event did not take place in Srebrenica, and the person beheaded was not a Serb soldier).

One of favorite and most referenced claims used by the Serbian government propaganda is an allegation made by the Toronto Star journalist, Bill Schiller, who allegedly met Srebrenica defender, Naser Oric, in 1994 when Oric. At that time, Oric allegedly boasted about his military victories against the Bosnian Serb soldiers in surrounding ethnically cleansed Muslim villages around Srebrenica. In 1995, Schiller claimed:

“There were burning houses, dead bodies, severed heads, and people fleeing. Oric grinned throughout, admiring his handiwork. ‘We ambushed them,’ he said when a number of dead Serbs appeared on the screen. The next sequence of dead bodies had been done in by explosives: “We launched those guys to the moon,’ he boasted.”

Dead Serb soldiers and severed heads from grenade shrapnels, but no word that those same villages were filled with Muslim mass graves from which Muslims were ethnically cleansed earlier in 1992? Naser Oric had every right to attack and recapture those villages.

Why hasn’t Schiller visited Sarajevo where the Bosnian Serb Army slaughtered over 1,500 children? Had he went to Sarajevo in 1995, he could have seen severed bodies of Bosniak Muslims lying on the street and blown by air modified bombs launched from the Serb positions around Sarajevo. Recently, a former Serb General and a terrorist Dragoljub Milosevic has recently been convicted on 5 counts of terrorism against Sarajevo citizens by the International Criminal Tribunal. Another terrorist and a former Serb General, Stanislav Galic was also convicted on terror charges against Sarajevo citizens by the same UN court.

Every time Bosniaks responded to Serb attacks to defend themselves, there was another ‘cavalier’ attempting to equalize legitimate struggle of Srebrenica’s population with brutal attacks of the Bosnian Serb Army. It seems the West, and journalists like Schiller, hoped that the Bosniaks would sit silent in Srebrenica without responding to the Serb attacks, while Serbs were bombarding Srebrenica enclave and cutting off humanitarian aid?

Schiller failed to focus on a bigger picture and write a story or two about the human catastrophe facing starving Bosniak population of Srebrenica which was bombarded by the Serbs from surrounding ethnically cleansed Muslim villages. In 1992, Serbs expelled Bosniaks from their villages around Srebrenica, and used those villages to set up military bases from which they launched brutal attacks on Srebrenica.

Nonetheless to say, not even one word of Schiller’s story was corroborated by the evidence, and Schiller was a “no show” at the International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia.

While masterminds of Srebrenica genocide, Gen Ratko Mladic and former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic, are still on the run; the Hague Court managed to convict Naser Oric for failing to prevent individual war crimes with respect to the murders of 4-6 Serbs in Srebrenica. One cannot even compare individual war crimes against the Serbs with the crimes of Genocide against the Bosniaks. At least 8,000 and up to 10,000 Bosniaks perished – among them, many defenceless children.

The indicted Serb war criminals and masterminds of genocide, Ratko Mladic and Radovan Karadzic, are still on the run and widely believed to be protected by the Serbian Orthodox Church.

DISSECTING MILOSEVIC PROPAGANDA

October 15, 2007 Comments off

Today we examine one of Slobodan Milosevic’s carefully authored propaganda materials titled:

“Memorandum on War Crimes and Crimes of Genocide in Eastern Bosnia (communes of Bratunac, Skelani and Srebrenica) committed against the Serbian population from April 1992 to April 1993.”

Srebrenica genocide denial web sites have been circulating above document as “official U.N. conclusions” about alleged “Moslem terror” against Serb civilians around Srebrenica. The problem is that these allegations are NOT official U.N. conclusions – as deniers tirelesly portray them. The allegations contained in the above document have been discredited by the United Nations War Crimes Court, Serbia’s Human Rights Watch, as well as internationally backed Research and Documentation Center (tip: if you click on the actual links, you can get more information).

Slobodan Milosevic was in no way naive or stupid; he knew what he was doing. In a bizarre way, he was a clever mass murderer; but his attempts to shift blame on the victims failed miserably. However, war-time Milosevic Government’s propaganda is well and alive even today.

Here is the latest comment coming from an individual who runs two extremist blogs (which do not deserve to be ‘featured’ at Srebrenica Genocide Blog), quote:

“You’re leaving out the fact that Bosnian Muslims massacred Serbs between April 1992 and April 1993 in the communities of Bratunac, Skelani, and Srebrenica, as though there have been no crimes committed by Muslims… If you wish, I can post on this blog the UN id number of the documents relating to the post above. Genocide is difficult to hide, even for the UN Caliphate.”

OUR RESPONSE: No, you don’t need to post any UN id numbers – we will do it for you; we already know which document you are refering to. Be careful what you call “facts”; first get your story straight. The document you are refering to is: UN id # A/46/171 and S/25635, titled: “Memorandum on War Crimes and Crimes of Genocide in Eastern Bosnia (communes of Bratunac, Skelani and Srebrenica) committed against the Serbian population from April 1992 to April 1993.”

The copy of this document can be found on most Srebrenica Genocide denial websites, one of them being “Emperor’s Clothes” (web site run by Jared Israel, long-time Milosevic’s apologist and disgraced Srebrenica Genocide denier). This individual has reduced his existence to Srebrenica genocide denial claims and celebration of a mass killer – Slobodan Milosevic.

In fact, the document “A/46/171 and S/25635”, does NOT contain any official U.N. conclusions (aka: facts). This document had been carefully drafted by Slobodan Milosevic‘s “Yugoslav State Commission for War Crimes and Genocide” and submitted to the U.N. on June 2 1993 by a right-wing Serbian ambassador Dragomir Djokic.

Milosevic’s ambassador, Dragomir Djokic, kept close ties with then Bosnian Serb “Iron Lady” Biljana Plavsic, discredited professor of biology whose ‘scientific research’ included such genetic discoveries as her theory that “Muslims are genetically deformed”. This supposedly respected biologist, with her enviable reputation as a university professor and expert, has been tireless in propagating these ‘scientific discoveries’ of hers. It was her conception of the biological supremacy of the Serb race and nation which led Biljana Plavsic (and people associated to her) to encourage ethnic cleansing and on that basis commit mass crimes in Bosnia. From the very beginning of the war Plavsic was already invoking Dragoljub-Draza Mihailovic, leader during World War II of the Serbian nationalists better known as Chetniks and a proven collaborator of the German occupiers: “He fought for the unification of all Serbs within a single Serb state… Uncle Draza intended to cleanse the future united Serb lands of all enemies of Serbdom and Orthodoxy, as well as of anti-national elements.” [sources] This is the kind of person Dragomir Djokic closely worked with.

In order to justify wide scale ethnnic cleansing and mass killings of Bosniaks, Serbian ambassadors submitted various (later discredited) statements and propaganda allegations to the U.N. including the one we are discussing right now: “Memorandum on War Crimes and Crimes of Genocide in Eastern Bosnia (communes of Bratunac, Skelani and Srebrenica) committed against the Serbian population from April 1992 to April 1993.

In his submission, Milosevic’s ambassador Djokic asked the U.N. to circulate document as “Official U.N. Document”, so he could ensure that Serbia’s propaganda claims are strenghtened within diplomatic circles (pay attention to his words), quote:

“I should be grateful if you would have the present letter and its annex circulated as an official document of the General Assembly, under item 115 (c) of the preliminary list and of the Security Council.”

When Djokic submitted these allegations about “Moslem terror” against “Serb civilians” to the U.N. in 1993, he conveniently avoided mentioning that Bosnian Serb forces, with full logistical support of his Government, killed about 15,000 Bosniaks in various parts of Eastern Bosnia and ethnically cleansed over 90% of predominantly Bosniak territory of Podrinje. He conveniently left that part out, because Djokic was nothing more than disposable hand of Slobodan Milosevic’s propaganda machine of the 90’s.

Any ambassador can submit any document to the U.N.; it’s part of a fairness process. But to claim that this document reflects ‘official U.N. conclusions’ is nothing more, but a bold faced propaganda. The document is nothing more than an official submittion of Yugoslav Ambassador to the General Council, but the allegations contained in this document are NOT official U.N. conclusions. This is just a submittion (allegation) by Yugoslav side, NOT an Official U.N. conclusion as Srebrenica Genocide deniers and pro-Milosevic apologists want you to believe. And it is absolutely crucial to keep this distinction in mind, not only for the purpose of fairness – but also for the purpose of the truth.

During Srebrenica Genocide trials, the International Criminal Tribunal at the Hague, as well as Human Rights Watch, and the Research and Documentation Center have completely discredited allegations contained in this document – as we reported on numerous occassions, especially in the following article: Falsification of Serb Victims Around Srebrenica: What does the International Criminal Tribunal says?

As an alternative to Serbia’s long-time discredited allegations, one should read official U.N. conclusions. So where do you find them?

For official U.N. conclusions that have nothing to do with (pro)-Milosevic’s discredited propaganda, one might consider reading Official U.N. Report A/54/549 titled: “The Fall of Srebrenica” (1999). You can read bits and pieces of this report at Srebrenica Genocide Blog in a section: Role of Bosniak Forces on the Ground (must read) and our evolving article mega-article Questions and Answers About Srebrenica Genocide.

FALSIFICATION OF SERB “VICTIMS” AROUND SREBRENICA

March 31, 2007 1 comment
In order to justify Srebrenica genocide, Serbian propaganda – under the leadership of right-wing nationalist Milivoje Ivanisevic – claimed that over 3,000 Serb civilians were murdered around Srebrenica. What are the facts?

(From the Office of the Chief United Nations War Crimes Prosecutor)

Florence Hartmann, Spokesperson for the Office of the Prosecutor, made the following statement:

Asked to comment on the different number of Serb victims in the Srebrenica region published in Belgrade, Hartmann replied that:

First of all, the OTP is always very careful in the use of the word ‘victim’. Military or Police casualties from combat should not be considered victims in a criminal investigation context, in the same way people are victims from war crimes, such as summary executions.

Before speaking about the whole area of Podrinja, including at least the municipalities of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica and Skelani, I would comment on the various figures circulating around the Kravica attack of January 1993. The figures circulating of hundreds of victims or claiming that all 353 inhabitants were “virtually completely destroyed” do not reflect the reality.

During the attack by the BH army on Kravica, Jezestica, Opravdici, Mandici and the surrounding villages (the larger area of Kravica), on the 7th & 8th January 1993, 43 people were killed, according to our information. Our investigation shows that 13 of the 43 were obviously civilians. Our findings are matching with the Bratunac Brigade military reports of battle casualties which are believed in the OTP to be very reliable because they are internal VRS reports.

For the whole region, i.e the municipalities of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica and Skelani, the Serb authorities claimed previously that about 1400 people were killed due to attacks committed by the BH Army forces for the period of May 1992 to March 1995, when Srebrenica was under the control of Naser Oric. Now the figure has become 3,500 Serbs killed. This figure may have been inflated. Taking the term “victims” as defined previously, these figures just does not reflect the reality.

I wish to name various Serb sources on Serb victims which has circulated until recently. They are maybe not detailed but as they were presented. According to the RS Commission for War Crimes, the number of Serb victims for the Bratunac-Srebrenica-Skelani region was until recently 995 victims (520 Bratunac area and 475 Srebernica area), of which Kravica, 43 victims.

According to “The Chronicle of Our Graves”; a book by Milivoje Ivanisevic, the president of the Belgrade Centre for Investigating Crimes Committed against the Serbian People, claimed that the number of Serb victims for Bratunac-Srebrenica-Skelani region was 1,200 victims but presented personal details available for only 624 victims. The author claimed that all 353 Kravica inhabitants were “virtually completely destroyed” which is not accurate.

Another book, “For the Honourable Cross and Golden Freedom”; a book (1,508 pages) by unknown authors from RS and in collaboration with the RS Ministry of Interior, claimed that the No. of Serb victims for the Bratunac-Srebrenica-Skelani region is 641 victims, all war-related”. [Read full report]

Research and Documentation Center (RDC) in Sarajevo, which includes joint Bosniak, Serb and Croat investigators, recently investigated number of alleged Serb casualties around Srebrenica and concluded that the alleged number of 3,287 Serb casualties in Central Podrinje is actually incorrect and nine to ten times lower than reported by the Serbian media. RDC closely works and aids ICTY Investigations and is funded by both international community and the joint government of Bosnia-Herzegovina (which is composed of Bosniak, Serb and Croat lawmakers). RDC concluded, quote:

The allegations that Serb casualties in Bratunac, between April 1992 and December 1995 amount to over three thousand is an evident falsification of facts. The RDC research of the actual number of Serb victims in Bratunac has been the most extensive carried out in Bosnia and Herzegovina and proves that the overall number of victims is three to nine times smaller than indicated by Serbia and Montenegro. Perhaps the clearest illustration of gross exaggeration is that of Kravica, a Serb village near Bratunac attacked by the Bosnian Army on the morning of Orthodox Christmas, January 7, 1993 . The allegations that the attack resulted in hundreds of civilian victims have been shown to be false. Insight into the original documentation of the Army of Republika Srpska (VRS) clearly shows that in fact military victims highly outnumber the civilian ones. The document entitled “Warpath of the Bratunac brigade”, puts the military victims at 35 killed and 36 wounded; the number of civilian victims of the attack is eleven…. The number of victims from Central Bosnia buried in Bratunac is consistent with the population movements after the war, especially the Serb population from the suburbs of Sarajevo . Under the Dayton Peace Accords, the suburbs of Sarajevo held by the VRS were to be re-integrated into the city of Sarajevo . The then leadership of the RS called on the local Serb population to leave Sarajevo and even take the graves of their loved ones with them. In fact, such a large majority followed the instructions that parts of the city of Sarajevo remained deserted for months. The remnants of their loved ones have been buried in Bratunac after the war, but their deaths are presented as the result of actions taken by the Bosnian Army units from Srebrenica.

As importantly, a number of foreign nationals (mainly from Serbia and Montenegro and Croatia) are included in the overall figure of Serb victims in Bratunac. At least 15 such individuals lost their lives in Bratunac as a result of fighting; it may be of some significance that all of them were members of a paramilitary group that arrived to Bratunac in April 1992, upon invitation of Bratunac Serb Democratic Party and in coordination with the State Security Service of Republic of Serbia (see testimony of Miroslav Deronjić, President of Municipal Board of SDS Bratunac, at International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia). Some of those individuals are Vesna Krdžalić, Dragica Mastikosa, Aleksandar Grahovac and Sreto Suzić who all died in combat on May 29, 1992 . Subsequently, they were all classified as “victims of Muslim terror” by the RS authorities. However, individuals from Serbia continued arriving to Bratunac throughout the year 1992, if the death records of the Bratunac brigade are to be trusted: one such individual died in fighting in August (Žarko Komnenski) and one more in November (Đuro Vujaklija). Furthermore, death records show that “volunteers” arrived from Serbia to Bratunac even in 1993, such as Dragan Milićev, who died in combat in January 1993 and Dragoslav Stanković who died in February 1993. [Read full report]

Human Rights Watch agrees, quote:

The ultra-nationalist Serbian Radical Party launched an aggressive campaign to prove that Muslims had committed crimes against thousands of Serbs in the area. The campaign was intended to diminish the significance of the July 1995 crime, and many in Serbia were willing to accept that version of history.

But as the Oric judgment makes clear, the facts do not support the equivalence thesis. Take the events in the village of Kravica, on the Serb Orthodox Christmas on January 7, 1993, for example. The alleged killing of scores of Serbs and destruction of their houses in the village is frequently cited in Serbia as the key example of the heinous crimes committed by the Muslim forces around Srebrenica.

In fact, the Oric judgment confirms that there were Bosnian Serb military forces present in the village at the time of attack. In 1998, the wartime New York Times correspondent Chuck Sudetic wrote in his book on Srebrenica that, of forty-five Serbs who died in the Kravica attack, thirty-five were soldiers. Original Bosnian Serb army documents, according to the ICTY prosecutor and the Sarajevo-based Center for Research and Documentation of War Crimes, also indicate that thirty-five soldiers died.

The critics also invoke unreliable statistics. A spokesman for the ruling Democratic Party of Serbia in the wake of the Oric judgment, for example, claimed that “we have documents showing that 3,260 people were found dead around Srebrenica from 1992-1995.” However, the book Hronike nasih grobalja (Chronicles of Our Graveyards) by the Serb historian Milivoje Ivanisevic (the president of the Belgrade Centre for Investigating Crimes Committed against the Serbian People), uses the significantly lower figure, of “more than 1,000 persons [who] died,” and contains the list, mostly made of men of military age. Among those killed, there were evidently a significant number of Bosnian Serb soldiers who died in the fighting, like in Kravica. [read full report]

MYTH ABOUT SERB CASUALTIES AROUND SREBRENICA

May 15, 2006 2 comments

THE MYTH OF BRATUNAC: A BLATANT NUMBERS GAME

By:
Research & Documentation Center

Research and Documentation Center, Bosnia-Herzegovina

The allegations that Serb casualties in Bratunac, between April 1992 and December 1995 amount to over three thousand is an evident falsification of facts. The RDC’s [Research and Documentation Center] research of the actual number of Serb victims in Bratunac has been the most extensive carried out in Bosnia and Herzegovina and proves that the overall number of victims is three to nine times smaller than indicated by Serbia and Montenegro .
Perhaps the clearest illustration of gross exaggeration is that of Kravica, a Serb village near Bratunac attacked by the Bosnian Army on the morning of Orthodox Christmas, January 7, 1993 . The allegations that the attack resulted in hundreds of civilian victims have been shown to be false. Insight into the original documentation of the Army of Republika Srpska (VRS) clearly shows that in fact military victims highly outnumber the civilian ones. The document entitled “Warpath of the Bratunac brigade”, puts the military victims at 35 killed and 36 wounded; the number of civilian victims of the attack is eleven.
In addition to information received from relatives and family members of the victims and inspection of cemeteries, RDC has collected all existing primary sources, official documents and documentation of RS Ministry of Defense and Bratunac brigade of VRS, as well as research by the Serb authors. The victims have been categorized on the basis of two time-related criteria: the first was the municipality of residence at the time of the beginning of war; the second was the municipality of premature and violent death.
After all the sources have been processed, cross-referenced and reviewed, the results showed that 119 civilians and 424 soldiers classified in the first group died in Batunac during the war. Under the second category the number of civilians is somewhat higher (119) whereas the number of soldiers is 448. The result demonstrates that 26 members of other VRS units other than Bratunac brigade of VRS fought and died in combat in the municipality of Bratunac .
RDC inspection of the military cemetery in Bratunac showed that of 383 victims buried it is impossible to ascertain the exact cause of death for 63 victims, even though they may have died during the war. In addition, 139 victims who have lived elsewhere at the time of the outbreak of war and died in fighting either in their places of residence or elsewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina, are now buried in Bratunac military cemetery. 48 victims buried in Bratunac fought and died in Hadžići; 36 fought and died in Srebrenica; 34 and died in Vogošća; 3 in Konjic and 3 more in Ilijaš; 2 fought and died in Sarajevo, two more in Ilidža; one in Trnovo, Pale and Tuzla each.
Of the remaining victims from outside Bratunac one lived in Kiseljak, but died in Hadžići; one lived in Srebrenica and died in Jajce; three lived in Travnik and died in Hadžići, three lived in Ilidža and died in Hadžići, nine lived in Sarajevo and died in Hadžići, one lived in Hadžići and died in Vogošća, one lived in Zenica and died in Vogošća, one lived in Zenica and died in Srebrenica. Furthermore, one victim lived and died in Tuzla , one lived in Bosanski Brod and died in Olovo, one lived in Srebrenica and died in Bihać. Lastly, two individuals who lived in Kakanj and died in Hadžići are buried in the military cemetery in Bratunac, one who lived in Hadžići and died in Ilidža, two who lived in Vitez and died in Hadžići; four residents of Konjic who died in Hadžići, two residents of Pale who died in Hadžići, seven residents of Zenica who died in Hadžići, one resident of Vareš and one resident of Kakanj, who both died in Ilijaš.
The number of victims from Central Bosnia buried in Bratunac is consistent with the population movements after the war, especially the Serb population from the suburbs of Sarajevo . Under the Dayton Peace Accords, the suburbs of Sarajevo held by the VRS were to be re-integrated into the city of Sarajevo . The then leadership of the RS called on the local Serb population to leave Sarajevo and even take the graves of their loved ones with them. In fact, such a large majority followed the instructions that parts of the city of Sarajevo remained deserted for months. The remnants of their loved ones have been buried in Bratunac after the war, but their deaths are presented as the result of actions taken by the Bosnian Army units from Srebrenica.
As importantly, a number of foreign nationals (mainly from Serbia and Montenegro and Croatia) are included in the overall figure of Serb victims in Bratunac. At least 15 such individuals lost their lives in Bratunac as a result of fighting; it may be of some significance that all of them were members of a paramilitary group that arrived to Bratunac in April 1992, upon invitation of Bratunac Serb Democratic Party and in coordination with the State Security Service of Republic of Serbia (see testimony of Miroslav Deronjić, President of Municipal Board of SDS Bratunac, at International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia). Some of those individuals are Vesna Krdžalić, Dragica Mastikosa, Aleksandar Grahovac and Sreto Suzić who all died in combat on May 29, 1992 . Subsequently, they were all classified as “victims of Muslim terror” by the RS authorities. However, individuals from Serbia continued arriving to Bratunac throughout the year 1992, if the death records of the Bratunac brigade are to be trusted: one such individual died in fighting in August (Žarko Komnenski) and one more in November (Đuro Vujaklija). Furthermore, death records show that “volunteers” arrived from Serbia to Bratunac even in 1993, such as Dragan Milićev, who died in combat in January 1993 and Dragoslav Stanković who died in February 1993.


http://www.idc.org.ba/project/the_myth_of_bratunac.html