by Ivica DIKIC
"In a part of the Croatian society the biggest crime is to mention Communist crimes, so that my involvement in the work of the Commission for the Establishment of the Number of Victims During WWII and in the Post-WWII Period has caused fierce antagonistic reactions. Namely, the Commission does not estimate the number of victims, but establishes the identity and compiles lists of victims and with this exact method is destroys myths of Communist estimates [of the number of victims in WWII]. Since they cannot do anything against our method, its critics believe that they can subvert the work of the Commission by morally discrediting the people who are applying that method. Therefore it is not at all surprising that the report of the Commission was the object of a concentrated slanderous campaign against my person, which culminated after my election for a judge of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Croatia," writes Vukojevic. He continues: "As far as monstrous fabrications by the Association of Camp Inmates of Bosnia-Hercegovina, I state that I have never heard of the Croatian Defense Council camp Vojno, that I do not know persons mentioned in connection with that camp and that I will use all legal possibilities for the protection of my moral integrity."
"On July 16, 1999. The first promotion of the book was in Bihac, and after that we held a series of promotions all over Bosnia-Hercegovina. Therefore if our goal was to seek a sensation, we would have definitely found a way to send this book to Croatia much earlier and to inform the Croatian public about this story. Our only goal is to uncover the truth and bring criminals to justice, regardless of their ethnicity, and we really do not care about Vukojevic's current activities."
"Do you personally believe the story of the young woman from Stolac?"
"Absolutely! But, it is irrelevant whether I believe her story or not. If you think that that young woman approached us, told us her story and we took that story at face value, you are wrong. The story of the young woman hiding behind the name "Sabornik" [member of parliament], as every other story in the book has been carefully researched and checked: namely, we listened to other camp inmates from the camp Vojno in order to confirm that this young woman was indeed held there, and then we compared her testimony with testimonies of other inmates. Nearly all of the facts in these testimonies match, including the appearance of Vice Vukojevic. Only after going through this process, we took the testimony of the woman from Stolac as reliable. By the way, I talked to that young woman and she had no doubt that the man in question was indeed Vice Vukojevic, and she confirmed that after we had showed her photographs of Vukojevic," says Ajanovic. Vice president of the Association of Camp Inmates Adil Mehic adds: "Just ask yourself what this young woman could gain from making up a story with Vukojevic. What would she gain from making up that detail? Really, she would gain absolutely nothing! Besides, that young woman, whose identity we know, cannot communicate with journalists because she is a protected witness of the Hague Tribunal and is under Police protection in Sweden. Any statements for the public would automatically deny her that protection."
"There are two more testimonies that implicate Vukojevic in a similar context, but those cases are still in the processing phase and we do not want to publicize them before we confirm that they are authentic," mentions Medic.
In June, the Association of Camp Inmates of Bosnia-Hercegovina filed with the Hague Tribunal indictment proposals against Nikola Poplasen, Lewis McKenzie, Michael Rose, Vice Vukojevic, Perica Jukic, and Zeljko Antolovic, but, according to Aljanovic, that is not all.
"We are preparing to file with the Hague Tribunal an indictment against Mr. Franjo Tudman. I still refer to him as mister, since no one is guilty until his guilt is proven."
"What will your charges be based on?"
"It will be based on all the documents in our possession that which prove that Franjo Tudman initiated an aggression against Bosnia-Hercegovina and war crimes against Bosniaks."
"We really do not care about names," says secretary general of the Association Melika Malesevic. "We only care that the criminals end up behind bars. We former camp inmates are hurt the most by the fact that our numerous torturers are still freely walking through Bosnia and neighboring countries."
At the end of this story, Irfan Ajanovic advises Vice Vukojevic to as a good Catholic, if he indeed is one, go to a confession. By the way, Ajanovic thinks that the best place for such a confession would be the Hague.
"Let him turn himself in to the Hague and there prove his innocence. This book is not, therefore, a verdict, but an indictment compiled by raped women, and those who are wrongly accused have a chance to prove their innocence. Nevertheless, above all, I would like to face Vukojevic in a TV show and ask him several questions. I am curious about his reaction," concludes Ajanovic.
General McKenzie asked me for my name, where I was from...
I kept quiet and pretended I did not understand anything. I shrugged my shoulders and slowly pulled back, until General McKenzie told me in English: 'Miss, you speak English very well and understand very well everything I am telling you. I am here to help you. That is in your interest, and you are here to help me. That is my interest. Love led by interest is the strongest love.' I realized my position. Imprisoned, separated from my nine-months-old and helpless baby. Both of us were helpless and captured. Every resistance was madness.(...) With the sounds of kitsch music from Serbia, from the radio, General satisfied his desire, and I defended my imprisoned baby. With clenched teeth and clenched heart... That went on with small interruptions for more than twenty days. General visited me 7-8 times."
(Testimony of a woman under code "General". She was born in Zenica in 1970 and was raped in a Serb camp in Vogosca.)
At about midnight, Velibor Ostojic left with Mirjana, saying that they had to leave early the following day for Banja Luka. After the two of them drove off, quiet voices belonging to the security could be heard around the house. Thus, I was left alone with the British general... When Ostojic mentioned his name, before the general even showed up, I doubted he was telling the truth. However, he was. I had an opportunity to see General Michael Rose on TV frequently since the beginning of 1994. I could not understand how such a high British officer, the commander of UN forces in Bosnia-Hercegovina, could debase himself so much to get close to an ordinary prisoner, a Bosniak woman, or 'a Turk woman' as minister Velibor Ostojic referred to me.(...)
General was not violent with me, nor did he need to hurt me physically. General took me, used me and satisfied his sexual desire. Did he rape me? Did General Rose sexually molest me? He did. He humiliated me like a slave. I could not resist. I was raped inasmuch as I was a prisoner, a camp inmate, without any human rights...(...)
I stayed there for another five or six days, and General Rose visited me two more times during that period. He would always come for a visit after a run."
(Testimony of a woman under code "Tjentiste II". She was born in Gorazde in 1967 and raped in a Serb camp in Foca.)
'Professor Nikola'!!! Those two words were deeply imprinted into my memory and burned in me until I returned from Sweden in 1997 and recognized 'professor Nikola', a criminal and a rapist, on TV. I recognized Nikola Poplasen [former president of Srpska, removed from office by the High Representative of the International Community] in the Serb parliament in Banja Luka."
(Testimony of a woman under code "Bulging eyes". She was born in Novi Pazar in 1960 and raped in a Serb camp in Vogosca.)
Tadic then approached me, undressed me in several seconds, and then raped me. I was powerless and beaten up. Tadic was drunk and was panting and he drooled all over me."
(Testimony of a woman under code "Pitljo". She was born in Zepce, and was raped in a Croat camp in the same town.)