"The Croatian World Congress sent a letter
last week demanding that Carla Del Ponte, the chief prosecutor of the International
Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), open a criminal investigation into Mr.
Clinton and other top officials of his administration for 'aiding and abetting indicted
Croatian Gen. Ante Gotovina in a 1995 Croatian military operation known as ´Operation
Storm.´... Secretly supported by the Clinton administration, Croatian forces launched a
massive three-day military offensive - known as 'Operation Storm' - on Aug. 4, 1995, in
which Croatia recovered territories occupied by rebel Serbs following Zagreb´s drive for
independence from Yugoslavia in 1991.... The Croatian World Congress said the U.S.
administration gave the green light for the operation and provided diplomatic and
political support for it."
Balkans tribunal turns to Clinton
Washington Times, July 08, 2002
Orignal URL http://www.studiacroatica.com/cwc/release.htm
HRVATSKI SVJETSKI KONGRES
CROATIAN WORLD CONGRESS
PRESS RELEASE CONTACT: PROF. DR. SIMUN SITO CORIC
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CROATIAN WORLD CONGRESS FILES COMPLAINT WITH HAGUE
PROSECUTOR DEL PONTE TO INVESTIGATE
THE HAGUE (4 JULY 2002)
The Croatian World Congress today submitted to Carla Del Ponte, Prosecutor at
the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, a formal request to open a
criminal investigation against senior U.S. officials for aiding and abetting indicted
Croatian General Ante Gotovina in a 1995 Croatian military operation known as
"Operation Storm." Specifically
named in the complaint are former President William Jefferson Clinton, former
The complaint filed today alleges that the
The complaint filed today alleges that the
Established in July of 1993, the Croatian World Congress is a non-profit, non-governmental and non-party international organization that enjoys advisory status as a member of the United Nations.
Orignal URL http://www.studiacroatica.com/cwc/submission.htm
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[FrontPage HTML Markup Component][FrontPage HTML Markup Component][FrontPage HTML Markup Component]CROATIAN WORLD CONGRESS
REQUEST THAT THE PROSECUTOR INVESTIGATE NAMED INDIVIDUALS FOR VIOLATIONS OF INTERNATIONAL HUMANITARIAN LAW AND PREPARE INDICTMENTS AGAINST THEM PURSUANT TO ARTICLES 18.1 AND 18.4 OF THE TRIBUNAL STATUTE.
International Criminal Tribunal for the
Churchillplein 1, 2501 EW,
Dear Prosecutor Del Ponte:
On behalf of the Croatian World Congress, a non-governmental organization that is a member of the United Nations with advisory status, you are hereby notified pursuant to Article 18(1) of the Statute of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia of the existence of information concerning serious violations of international humanitarian law (hereinafter IHL), namely that officials of the United States of America, including but not limited to William Jefferson Clinton, Anthony Lake, Samuel Berger, Richard Holbrooke, Peter Galbraith and/or George J. Tenet (hereinafter collectively referred to as U.S. officials), aided and abetted Croatian General Ante Gotovina, who was indicted by your office on 8 June 2001.
In your indictment against General Ante Gotovina, you allege that General Gotovina is responsible for crimes committed during and after Operation Storm, a Croatian military operation against the so-called Republika Srpska Krajina. The indictment alleges that the operation was a preplanned ethnic cleansing campaign that resulted in the deportation of over 150,000 Croatian Serbs in August 1995, as well as the murder of over 150 Croatian Serbs. The indictment charges that:
Between 17 July 1995 and 15 November 1995, Ante GOTOVINA, acting individually and/or in concert with others, including President Franjo Tudjman, planned, instigated, ordered, committed or otherwise aided and abetted in the planning, preparation or execution of the crimes charged below in the course of, and after, the "Oluja" offensive. Ante GOTOVINA is individually responsible for the crimes alleged against him in this indictment pursuant to the provisions of Article 7(1) of the Statute of the Tribunal. Individual criminal responsibility includes planning, instigating, ordering, committing or otherwise aiding and abetting in the planning, preparation or execution of any crimes referred to in Articles 2 to 5 of the Statute.
It is thus the contention of your office that as early as 17 July 1995 (over two weeks prior to Operation Storm), General Gotovina had acted in concert with others and had planned, instigated, ordered committed or otherwise aided and abetted in the planning preparation or execution of the crimes charged below in the course of, and after, the Oluja offensive.
At the outset, the Croatian World Congress (CWC) wishes to express its deep dismay at your indictment of General Gotovina. The CWC firmly believes that General Gotovina is innocent of the charges you have leveled against him and that Operation Storm was carried out professionally and in full accordance and respect for international humanitarian law. Nevertheless, your office persists with its prosecution of General Gotovina, which as a matter of law suggests that you believe you have evidence that General Gotovina is guilty beyond reasonable doubt.
If this is in fact the case, then the CWC believes that justice demands that you
prosecute all potential perpetrators, and all nations must be treated evenhandedly. The ICTY has come under consistent criticism that
it applies one set of standards for the countries and citizens in
Much evidence has been made public that
The "Green Light": It is public knowledge that US officials in fact gave the
green light to the Croatians to start Operation Storm.
A. The Observer, 30 July 1995: On July 30, 1995 [six days before Operation Storm
began], the British newspaper The Observer quoted unnamed Western diplomatic sources as
saying that US officials had given the Croats a green light. The Observer quotes the diplomat as follows:
". . .Diplomatic sources in the area, who declined to be
identified, said the Croat offensive followed the discreet encouragement of the
B. Testimony of the
head of Croatian military counterintelligence:
In August 2001, the Croatian Army's head of counterintelligence at the time of Operation Storm
announced in the Croatian paper "Narodni List" as
follows: "Former chief of Croatian Army's counterintelligence Markica Rebic stated today that Pentagon
and the CIA were completely supervising operation Oluja
(Storm) of Croatia Army in 1995. Rebic also claims that he had
gotten a message from American military attache that the
C. Testimony of Croatian President Stipe Mesic: Current Croatian President Stipe
Mesic also claims that the
I am certain that President Tudjman would never have
undertaken this Operation [Storm] had he not received the green light from the
Knowledge of Events During Operation Storm:
Violations of the United Nations
Arms Embargo: The United Nations
Security Council, pursuant to Resolutions 713 and 727, imposed
a general and complete embargo on all deliveries of weapons and military equipment to the
countries of the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
Former U.S. Ambassador to Croatia Peter Galbraith admitted in an interview in the
Croatian daily Vecernji List on
In 1996, an inquiry by the United States Congress as well as the Los Angeles
Times revealed that
Air Support for Operation Storm:
In addition to providing intelligence support, US officials also provided air support to
the Croatian offensive. On the first day of
Operation Storm, two
NATO spokesman Jim Mitchell in
The missile site that the
The Croats were Aour junkyard dogs@: US Ambassador Richard Holbrooke's memoirs on this period,
entitled To End A War,
are full of admissions of the
on page 73 a dinner he and
"Dick: We hired these guys to be our junkyard dogs because we were desperate. We need to try to control them. But this is no time to get squeamish about things. This is the first time the Serb wave has been reversed. That is essential for us to get stability, so we can get out."
[Emphasis added]. Holbrooke's book thus offers concrete
admissions that the
6. Holbrooke's Control Over Croatian Military Operations: Holbrooke's book makes clear that the United States in general, and Holbrooke in particular, were in control of Croatian forces and were using the Croatian Army as their own ground troops in an effort to achieve preconditions necessary for the Dayton Peace Agreement. At page 160, Holbrooke admits to telling Tudjman which towns to take:
"I told Tudjman the offensive had great value to the negotiations. It would be much easier to retain at the table
what had been won on the battlefield than to get the Serbs to give up territory they had
controlled for several years. I urged Tudjman
to take Sanski Most, Prijedor, and
Bosanski Novi all important towns that had become worldwide symbols of ethnic
cleansing. . . .
Later, Holbrooke writes at page 166 that he told Croatian Defense Minister Gojko Susak:
"Nothing we said today should be construed to mean that we want you
to stop the rest of the offensive, other than
It is plain from Holbrooke's own words that he was giving
orders both to Tudjman and to Susak in the military arena. At the very least, Holbrooke
was providing a level of encouragement for Croatian military operations that rises to the
level of aiding and abetting under IHL. Per Holbrooke's
instructions, the Croats attacked all three cities, but only succeeded in taking Sanski Most. The
7. Holbrooke Encouraged The Croats Despite Human Rights Violations: Holbrooke encouraged the Croatian offensives despite knowledge that violations of international humanitarian law were occurring. Holbrooke himself writes as follows on page 160:
"Even while encouraging the offensive, Galbraith and I expressed great concern over the many refugees already displaced. We told Tudjman that there was no excuse for the brutal treatment of Serbs that followed most Croatian military successes. The abuse of Serb civilians, most of whom had lived in the area for generations, was wrong. Using a provocative phrase normally applied only to the Serbs, I told Tudjman that the current Croatian behavior might be viewed as a milder form of ethnic cleansing."
Holbrooke here admits to encouraging HV military operations despite actual knowledge of violations that have occurred in the aftermath of Operation Storm.
The Ability to Stop the Operation: It is clear that
at all relevant times, the
A book written by Ivo
Daalder titled, Getting
to Dayton, also demonstrates the ability of the
Holbrooke and Galbraith met with Tudjman on September 17 to tell him
not to take
It is thus clear that the
Admissions Regarding Control: Galbraith
shed further light on the degree of control exercised by US officials over Croatian
military operations in the summer and fall of 1995. In
an interview with the magazine Dani,
still not entirely clear how it came about that the Croat forces halted their advance
That was one of the absolutely key moments in the war. Even now I cant tell you whether we did the right thing. Perhaps we did, perhaps we didnt...
What was your problem?
Ill tell you what my problem was at the time,
and how I look at things today. It was September and Holbrooke
had arrived with his team. Ordinarily we two would first have gone directly to Tudjman and
talked with him for an hour, an hour and a half, before joining his ministers. We were
waiting outside Tudjmans office, Holbrooke had come in
Was he in two minds too?
It was my impression that Holbrooke
didnt think he had to obey his instructions, since on previous occasions he
hadnt obeyed them either. And he asked me. People on the inside will tell you that I
was a hawk, that I called for military intervention and favoured a military solution. But at that moment I too had certain
doubts. My doubts related to two things: one was the refugee population from western
How does it strike you from todays perspective?
The reason for allowing
In other words, you regret your decision?
Not necessarily. The other side of the coin is the question of how many more people would have died. I dont know what the price is. I only know these are hard decisions that cannot be avoided. We had the responsibility for taking that decision and I think we took it on the basis of the best possible assessment we could make at the time. During the past six years Ive thought about it every day.
[Emphasis added]. It is clear that the
These are the facts that are in the public
AIDING AND ABETTING LIABILITY OF THE UNITED STATES OFFICIALS UNDER INTERNATIONAL LAW
The elements of aiding and abetting liability
are well established under international law, and were specifically addressed by the
Tribunal in the case of Prosecutor v. Furundzija,
245. The above analysis leads the Trial Chamber to the conclusion that it is not necessary for the accomplice to share the mens rea of the perpetrator, in the sense of positive intention to commit the crime. Instead, the clear requirement in the vast majority of the cases is for the accomplice to have knowledge that his actions will assist the perpetrator in the commission of the crime. This is particularly apparent from all the cases in which persons were convicted for having driven victims and perpetrators to the site of an execution. In those cases the prosecution did not prove that the driver drove for the purpose of assisting in the killing, that is, with an intention to kill. It was the knowledge of the criminal purpose of the executioners that rendered the driver liable as an aider and abettor. Consequently, if it were not proven that a driver would reasonably have known that the purpose of the trip was an unlawful execution, he would be acquitted.
246. Moreover, it is not necessary that the aider and abettor should know the precise crime that was intended and which in the event was committed. If he is aware that one of a number of crimes will probably be committed, and one of those crimes is in fact committed, he has intended to facilitate the commission of that crime, and is guilty as an aider and abettor.
Thus, in order for you to prove a case of aiding and abetting
liability against the US officials, it will not be necessary to prove that the US
officials shared the same criminal intent as you allege was possessed by General Gotovina or Croatian Armed Forces.
Instead, all that need be shown is that the
The facts in the public domain are thus as follows: the United States officials violated the United Nations arms embargo by allowing the HV to obtain weapons from Iran, and violated the arms embargo by providing training and planning through MPRI. The United States officials set up a CIA post inside of an HV base from which they were not only able to obtain real-time video footage of events transpiring on the ground during Operation Storm (and thus imputing to them knowledge of events on the ground), but also from which they could provide such intelligence data to General Gotovina to assist him in conducting Operation Storm. If General Gotovina carried out a pre-planned campaign to deport 150,000 to 200,000 Croatian Serb civilians, then the CIA base was not only used to provide knowledge to US officials of such a plan and course of conduct on the part of General Gotovina, but was also used to assist General Gotovina in achieving the goals of his alleged plan.
The public facts further indicate that the
The Croatian World Congress wishes to
reemphasize its position that neither General Gotovina nor the
If General Gotovina
is guilty, then the
It is now upon you to demonstrate that justice is blind and that your office conducts criminal investigations based on the law and facts, and not based on political considerations. It is our primary hope that you will recognize the error that occurred in indicting General Gotovina in the first place. If, however, your office continues to insist on pursuing that indictment, then it is our second hope that you will demonstrate to us and to the entire world that you treat all nations equally. We are confident that you will agree with our position that no country can be more equal than another when it comes to your enforcement of the provisions of the Tribunals Statute as mandated by the Security Council.
Madam Prosecutor, please be assured of my highest consideration.
Prof. Dr. imun ito Coric President Croatian World Congress
Cc: Members of the Security Council:
Ambassador Setphan Tafrov
Permanent Representative of
Ambassador Martin Belinga-Eboutou
Permanent Representative of Cameroon to the United Nations
22 East 73rd Street
New York, NY 11021
Ambassador Wang Yingfan
Permanent Representative of the People's Republic of China to the United Nations
350 East 35th Street, New York, NY 10016
Ambassador Alfonso Valdivieso
Permanent Representative of Colombia to the United Nations
140 East 57th Street, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10022
Ambassador Jean-David Levitte
Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations
One Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, 245 East 47th Street, 44th Floor New York, NY 10017
Ambassador Francois Lonseny Fall
Permanent Representative of Guinea to the United Nations
140 East 39th Street
New York NY 10016
Ambassador Richard Ryan
Permanent Representative of Ireland to the United Nations
One Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, 885 Second Avenue, 19th Floor, New York, NY 10017
Ambassador Anund Prayay Neewoor
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Mauritius to the United Nations
211 East 43rd St., 15th Floor, New York, NY 10017
Ambassador Adolfo Miguel Aguilar-Zinser
Permanent Representative of Mexico to the United Nations
Two United Nations Plaza, 28th Floor
New York NY 10017
Ambassador Ole Peter Kolby
Permanent Representative of Norway to the United Nations
825 Third Avenue, 39th Floor, New York, NY 10022
Ambassador Sergey Lavrov
Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations
136 East 67th Street, New York, NY 10021
Ambassador Kishore Mahbubani
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Singapore to the United Nations
231 East 51st Street, New York, NY 10022
Ambassador Dr. Mikhail Wehbe
Permanent Representative of the Syrian Arab Republic to the United Nations
820 Second Avenue, 15th Floor
New York, NY 10017
Ambassador Sir Jeremy Greenstock
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom to the United Nations
One Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, 885 Second Avenue, New York, NY 10017
Ambassador John D. Negroponte
Permanent Representative of the United States to the United Nations
799 United Nations Plaza, New York, N.Y. 10017-3505
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