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Judentum und Israel
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Der November 1991 und die Folgen für Jugoslawien:
US slams Germany for Yugoslav war

Die CDU/CSU-Opposition erweckt heute den Eindruck, als seien Krisen im Verhältnis der USA zur BRD eine absolute Novität. Dass dem nicht so ist zeigt ein Blick zurück in den November 1991...

Former U.S. secretary of state Lawrence Eagleberger has laid the blame for the civil war in former Yugoslavia squarely on the shoulders of Germany.

Speaking on American PBS-TV in December 1994, Eagleberger declared that Germany bears "full responsibility" for the bloody conflict because of its "insistence on recognising Slovenia and Croatia at all costs" in November 1991. As predicted by the UN, the U.S. State Department and the European Community, the German action led to a wildfire escalation of the conflict to Bosnia, he said. Eagleberger spoke as the Atlantic Alliance sank deeper into a state of crisis.

A glimpse into the increasingly tense international atmosphere generated by reunified Germany's Great Power politics first came over a year ago, however, in the shape of a very sharp, but scarcely reported, high-level diplomatic exchange between the Clinton administration in the USA and the Kohl government.

In mid-June, the story went out over the international press agencies that current US secretary of state Warren Christopher had blamed Germany for starting the bloody conflict in former Yugoslavia.

Said Christopher to the USA's biggest-selling international daily USA Today: "There were serious mistakes made in the whole process of recognition of the independence of the former Yugoslav states of Croatia and Slovenia and the Germans bear a particular responsibility in persuading their colleagues and the European Community." He added, "many serious students of the matter think the problems we face today stem from the recognition of Croatia and thereafter of Bosnia."

As soon as Christopher's comments hit the streets, German Chancellor Kohl and his foreign minister, Klaus Kinkel, sent their ambassador in Washington to the State department "to put the record straight".

Kohl also issued a statement through a spokesman that Christopher's "reproaches were unjustified" and Kinkel was wheeled out to claim, turning the truth both upside down and inside out, that Germany did not act unilaterally in recognising Croatia and Slovenia but "followed the European Community" when, in fact, on 11 December 1991, the then German foreign minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher announced Germany's recognition of the two breakaway republics without any consultation with Germany's EU partners.

As reported in an article by Marc Fisher in the 18 June 1993 edition of the International Herald Tribune, "the German reaction to Mr. Christopher's comments both officially and in the press was quick and heated."

In its lead story, the Right-wing conservative German daily Die Welt described the Christopher declaration as "the sharpest public criticism of Bonn policy by an American secretary of state in decades".

At the same time, the official German news agency, the Deutsche Presse Agentur, complained: "The Washington interpretation of developments in Yugoslavia is not new... but there was until now a silent agreement in the US government not to rock the boat. Why Christopher decided to pour oil on troubled waters and rub salt in the wound can only be guessed".

From inside Germany, however, not all reaction to the obvious truth of the US Secretary of State's comments was negative. Herman Scheer, a Bundestag member for the opposition Social-Democrats said the US version was "largely correct" and that the link between recognition of Germany's Croatian and Slovenian client states and the outbreak of war was accepted everywhere except in Germany.

Diplomatic language is carefully graded. The US termed the German reaction as "an unusual step for a friendly country". If this is what is now coming through to the surface, one can only speculate at the real extent of subterranean conflict between the two states.

*) Meeting of EU foreign ministers in the Hague in November 1991:

At that meeting, the then German foreign minister, Hans-Dietrich Genscher (FDP), announced without any prior notice Germany's intention to recognise the regime of Franjo Tudjman in Croatia.

This peremptory declaration, which stunned Germany's EU partners, set the seal on any last surviving chance of either preserving the Yugoslav state - which, even at that stage, the USA, France and Britain believed could be achieved - or of preventing the eruption of the conflicts within Yugoslavia into full scale war.

The regime which Genscher was so keen to recognise has an unbroken line of continuity from the Ustashi murderers of Ante Pavelic during the Second World War. The Croat government's complexion has escaped much attention because of international media attention on its rival gangsters and killers in Serbia.

The fact is, however, that Franjo Tudjman is a hard-line antisemite, proud that his wife "is neither Jewish nor Serbian". Tudjman has links with the French fascist Front National leader Jean-Marie Le Pen in France, has kept open house for nazis from across Europe, including the infamous nazi Black Legion mercenaries, and has himself written a book. Wastelands - Historical Truth denying the Holocaust and defending Hitler.

Such niceties mean little in Bonn and the tactic that bulldozed the EU into following Germany's line, with recognition of Tudjman on 15 January 1992, and drove the USA into reversing its former pro-Yugoslav unity position has since been ruthlessly applied in Bosnia-Herzegovi-a, which, though dubbed "an artificial state", had actually symbolised the multi-nationality Yugoslav experiment....

Quelle SEARCHLIGHT special "
Reunited Germany - The New Danger" pp28 07-11-02


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