PEACE CONFERENCE ON YUGOSLAVIA
After the genocide war in the Balkans there has not (yet) been any peace conference. However, those conferences which did take place at most led to or encouraged ethnocide.
At the same time I have made a very important discovery. Of course, as usual, this is not a big deal as every average historian/chronicler has this on his desk. Still, somehow, the essential element has slipped their attention. So, they do not see that the Slovene Lands – the Hereditary Lands – were always the STATES and as such, i.e. as a subject of State law under the rule of Ljubljana, they entered the Kingdom of SHS (Slovenes, Croats and Serbs), and this fact was also confirmed by Crown Prince Alexander (Karadjordjevich), Regent of Serbia in his reply to (Svetozar) Pribichevich’s address that "the State of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs (Drzhava SHS) is joining the Kingdom of Serbia". Crown Prince Alexander CORRECTED him and stated clearly: "THE LANDS OF THE AUSTRIAN EMPIRE are joining the Kingdom of Serbia." This statement is a very important one, as it reveals (i) that the educated Karadjordjevich had a good knowledge of what statehood means and (ii) he understood a proclamation issued by King Karl I ("Imperial Manifesto of 16 October 1918"), in which he decisively announced that the LANDS OF HIS KINGDOM (which were the Hereditary Lands – including the Slovene Lands) may separate from or join others of their own free will (as this is an original right of every sovereign state); however, NO DISSOLUTION OF THE KINGDOM OF HUNGARY will be allowed, whatsoever. This means that the provinces of the Kingdom of Hungary WERE NOT THE STATES, notwithstanding that for political reasons (to make Budim angry) the Hapsburg monarchs liked to name their provinces as "kingdoms" (Croatia, Slavonia) underpinning unduly the pomposity of those names, as they have never been states and consequently could not separate from the UNITED HUNGARIAN STATE. The Austro-Hungarian State/Dual Monarchy k.u.k. (Kaiser und König) as it was known was defeated and dissolved as the USA’s will, i.e. the will of (then President Woodrow) Wilson was to allow the establishment of the State of the Slovenes, Croats and Serbs (SHS), superseding the national law of the Austro-Hungarian state. Nothing in this agreement could proclaim that the administrative provinces ("kingdoms" of Croatia and Slavonia) became STATES in such a way as the Slovene Lands had always been in the past with their own (enthroned) rulers from the Hapsburg dynasty. Therefore, in the agreement between Napoleon and the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph Karl II*, called the Treaty of Leoben (also known as the Peace of Leoben), signed in 1797 by Napoleon Bonaparte it was clearly stated that Napoleon would RETURN to the EMPEROR HIS HEREDITARY STATES WHICH WERE OCCUPIED BY NAPOLEON. (The Peace of Leoben was published in both French and German languages and in both originals is written "états héréditaires de la Maison d'Autriche" and "Erbstaaten" respectively; see the appendix with documentation: http://www.livesjournal.eu/library/lives2/dokum2/1idok2.htm
So, there is no doubt that Zagreb has been deceiving the world all along (and the foolish Slovenian quasi-politicians) with a certain phantom "Croatian State Law" (which could not exist even in fairytales) using this deception to be towed by Slovenian statehood and of course abuse it strongly by usurping not only state attributes but also a vast amount of cultural and political heritage and of course the TERRITORY. Zagreb has shamelessly abused the Slovenian liberation efforts for its own separatist goal. Its activities were unscrupulous and so was its ruthless cleaning more than third of its territory from the Serbs. As might be expected, it has not suspended those activities yet – further steps are likely to be taken in both Bosnia and Herzegovina and Slovenia (they are not in the Karavanke Mountains, yet…).
CONFERENCES CALLED SO FAR IN RELATION TO THE BREAKUP OF YUGOSLAVIA
The breakup of and the secessionist war in the SFRY were accompanied by the following international conferences:
1) The Hague Conference on the future of Yugoslavia and its nations, from 7th to 12th September 1991.
Not one condition for convening this peace conference was fulfilled, yet the EU still convened it. The Conference was chaired by Lord Peter Carrington because he had experience with the fractional conflicts in Rhodesia (!) and he ran a camp of Yugoslav prisoners of war in 1945.
On 12 September 1991 the participants signed a Declaration of Intent; for example, a declaration on respecting minority rights, resulted in violence over the change in boundaries.
This conference was just a farce, giving a fresh impetus to the outbreak of war; in addition, the United Nations Security Council Resolution 713 on an Arms Embargo to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia gave all the advantages to Belgrade and (Slobodan) Miloshevich’s regime.
2) The first London Conference – extended conference on the former Yugoslavia from 26th to 27th August 1992.
This was convened by Great Britain, which held the presidency of the EU at the time. The Participants were: The SFRY republics, the EU countries, the USA, China, Russia, Japan, Canada, The Republic of Czechoslovakia (as a state which held the presidency of CSCE – Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe) and the neighboring countries: Austria, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, Albania.
The grounds for its conclusions: United Nations Security Council Resolution 242, 1967 on the Middle East war – grounds for mediation.
The conference was a fiasco. In the tight vote the participants adopted 13 principles which as a matter of fact were the basis for continuing the war.
The principles interesting for Slovenia are:
– The international community will not recognize territories gained by force;
– Condemnation of ethnic cleansing;
– The countries established on the SFRY territory will mutually recognize their boundaries;
– The countries established on the SFRY territory will solve their heritage problems.
The conference established an Executive Committee which was expected to continue the work of the conference on the former Yugoslavia. The Executive Committee included:
– Troika EU;
– Troika CSCE;
– Representative of the permanent members of UN Security Council;
– Representative of Islamic countries;
– Two representatives of the neighbouring countries;
– Lord Carrington.
This conference also only accelerated the expansion of the war.
3) The second London Conference from 20th to 21st July 1995
Foreign and Defense Ministers of NATO, Russia and UN representatives assembled at Leicester House in London to discuss the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was a total failure. As a matter of fact this conference legalized the Srebrenica massacre; as a result, the special delegate of the UN for human rights, Tadeusz Mazowiecki, protested by resigning his post.
4) The Geneva Conference on 7 and 8 September 1995.
The participants were Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, SFRY and the Contact Group without Italy (there was a dispute because of the position of their seat at the table!).
The conference tried to solve the problems in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but it provoked new war zones.
All meetings since than, including Dayton, had limited subject matter.
CONCLUSION RELATING TO THE CONFERENCES HELD SO FAR
The truth is that no peace conference on the war issue has been convened in the territory of the former Yugoslavia. The conferences held dealt with partial issues and had never recognized the real situation and consequently the established facts were erroneous. The consequences of those conferences were merely the continuance of the armed conflicts and aggravation of the situation.
These two elements, (i) failing to convene a peace conference after the termination of the armed conflict over the territory of the former Yugoslavia, and (ii) giving partial answers and entering into treaties which so far were based on erroneous statements and distorted facts, are the essential reasons for generating the tension that threatens to trigger new clashes at any time.
GROUNDS FOR THE NECESSITY TO CONVENE A PEACE CONFERENCE ON THE FORMER YUGOSLAVIA
The fact that a peace conference on the former Yugoslavia has not yet been convened, and that it constitutes a permanent threat of armed conflict to be recommenced, in itself constitutes a basis for convening such a conference. In particular, this conference should be urged to identify the erroneous facts established so far and reveal the inconsistent decisions.
So, on 20 December 1991 lord Carrington submitted a question to the Arbitration Commission created by EU (usually known as the Badinter Commission after its chairman, Robert Badinter) asking whether the Serbian nation, as the constitutive nation of Yugoslavia, has the right to self-determination and whether the inner boundaries between Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina the boundaries acknowledged by international law. The Badinter Commission replied that Serbs are entitled to their ethnic identity, but they are not entitled to separation, and in accordance with the SFRY Constitution, 1974 the bearers of sovereignty are not nations but republics and if the centralized government is broken up the republics will separate from federal republic by application of uti possidetis juris, which is a principle of international law stating that newly formed sovereign States should have the same borders that they had before their independence. They referred to the African conflict in the case of Burkina Faso and Mali.
The opinion issued by Commission was influenced by a fear of the breakup of the Soviet Union. The Commission allowed the possibility that republics may also negotiate agreements other than uti possidetis juris.
Slovenia did not object to the Commission’s decision as this decision was unfavourable for Serbia, notwithstanding that it was of direct benefit to Croatia, which in this way legalized its territorial gains from 1918.
At that time both Yugoslavia and Russia undoubtedly held Slovenia hostage.
The Badinter Commission also found out that Yugoslavia was in the process of destruction. Serbian and Montenegro objected indignantly, stating that they had their own statehood and that the other republics were only secessionists.
The decision of the Badinter Commission on the possibility of recognising the Republics of the former Yugoslavia allowed immediate recognition only for Slovenia and Macedonia. The Commission required Croatia to solve its minority problem and for Bosnia and Herzegovina it ascertained that the unquestionable will of the population had not been demonstrated.
The foregoing reveals all the confusion and incompetence of the participants in making decisions which were crucial for the destiny of whole nations. Because of their superficiality and unprofessional work, as well as disrespect of the facts relating to international law, they pushed the population of the federal State established in 1918 into severe secessionist wars, which resulted in the problems come into being at the date of its establishment and over the period of its existence.
The Badinter Commission could not clearly understand its own decision about destruction of the State, which under no circumstances was allowed to be broken up in any way other than that in which it was established (unless the population involved otherwise agreed). This decision gave impetus to the territorial appetites of the Zagreb powers and caused a catastrophe in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The total war which might also have included the Republic of Slovenia did not occur, only thanks to Slovenia which did not want to secure its statehood and the territorial integrity of its historical Slovene Lands, which were in 1918 joined to the federal State known as the Kingdom of Serbs, Croatians and Slovenes, by a bloody war. Under no circumstances of course did this mean that Slovenia agreed with this expansionism of its neighboring country or that Slovenia accepted as a fait accompli the results of war, civil and genocidal violence during the course of it.
The different decisions of the Badinter Commission and other groups, which so far dealt with the problems of the breakup of Yugoslavia showed that all of them mostly thought correctly but that their conclusions were absolutely wrong. In the case of the destruction of Yugoslavia, finally ascertained by the Badinter Commission, the regulations from the SFRY Constitution of 1974 can not be applied, as the new subjects established within the State formation cannot be subjects under the State Law, especially because the aforementioned Constitution did not assume such a possibility at all. There is also no legal measure which can take away or cancel subordination to such State law in the case of those parts of the united State that were already subject to State law when they joined to the Kingdom of Slovenes, Croatians and Serbs. The State-Law subjects at the time of the establishment of the Kingdom of Slovenes, Croatians and Serbs were solely Serbia, Montenegro and the Slovene Lands; the latter joined the new State within the State of Slovenes, Croatians and Serbs. That is why Serbia and Montenegro resolutely protested against this Banditer-Commision’s Decision, and insisted that in the case of the federal republics it was about secession. They obviously forgot to mention (because there were no disputes between them and Slovenia) that the Republic of Slovenia may also separate from the federal State as Slovenia had joined it as a State-Law subject with its Slovene Lands in 1918.
It might not be too much to add a very illustrative fact regarding the statehood of the formations which had united in the Kingdom of Slovenes, Croatians and Serbs. The most credible source of knowledge about the status of the Kingdom of Croatia and the Kingdom of Slavonia is certainly the official history of the State, of which these kingdoms were part. The historian Stephen Pálfy in his Hungarian History stated that in 1918 the Kingdom of Serbia occupied (!) Croatia and Slavonia, and by the Treaty of Trianon they became part of the Kingdom of Slovenes, Croatians and Serbs. This tells us everything and also confirms the above-mentioned statement of the Crown Prince Alexander (Karadjordjevich) in reply to the (Svetozar) Pribichevich’s address. At the time when Yugoslavia was established, the State-Law subjects were the Kingdom of Serbia (and the Kingdom of Montenegro, which then had already joined the Kingdom of Serbia) and the Slovene Lands under the rule of the National Council in Ljubljana, which had kept its statehood, also acknowledged by the Imperial Manifesto of 16 October 1918 issued by the Emperor Karl I. There can be no doubt that the Kingdom of Serbia could unite only with the another State (i.e. the Slovene Lands of the Austrian Empire) and in no way could it be done with the province of other State. Therefore the provinces Croatia and Slavonia, which were not State-Law subjects could only be occupied by the Kingdom of Serbia. So, in 1991 only the Republic of Slovenia could separate from Yugoslavia/Serbia, while other Republics, constituted within Yugoslavia after its establishment, had the constitutional right of secession in compliance with the SFRY Constitution of 1974, which means that for a secession from the SFRY they had to conclude an agreement with the constitutional elements of Yugoslavia: the Republic of Slovenia, the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Montenegro. The Agreement of course assumes the situation in 1918 at the moment of the establishment of the State.
The international bodies (and guilds) – which so far acted in the territory of the broken-up Yugoslavia – took measures, based on their erroneous, inconsistent and unlawful decisions, which tried to legitimise various unlawful and violent territorial gains based on genocide, in particular the gains of the Republic of Croatia; their activities caused not only various injustices and irregularities but above all contributed to instability which could also serve to ignite or fan the flames of smoldering tensions and conflicts and to recommence the war at any time.
CONVENING OF A PEACE CONFERENCE ON THIS MATTER IS AN URGENT NECESSITY AND ITS PREPARATION SHOULD START THIS VERY MOMENT. Only thus it will be possible to repair the erroneous decisions made up till now and to stop chauvinistic and genocidal forces in their destructive activities and territorial expansionism, and to build peace and stability and to enable forward-looking development in the territory of the broken-up Yugoslavia.
Among the various decisions made at the London Conference the most important for Slovenia is: "The International Community shall not recognize territories obtained by violence". This means that Croatia cannot keep those parts of the Slovene Lands, Primorska and Slovenska krajina, which were obtained by violence, by fraud (police, "temporary boundary points" and similar – both in Istria and at the Mura river) and by genocide (killing of Slovenes in Istria, Medmurje and Gorjanci).
(1 January 2010)
Translated from Slovenian Tajana Ida Feher
* Francis Austrian (full name Franz Joseph Karl von Habsburg-Lothringen), last emperor of the Holy Roman Empire of the German ethnic origin and the first Austrian Emperor, also known as double Emperor, * 12. February 1768, Florence; † (d.) 2. March 1835, Vienna.