SFOR in campaign against self-rule: Although that information was on several occasions denied both by the Hercegovacka Bank and the HDZ, experts in the international administration centers for conduct of verbal warfare persevere in repeating that misinformation. But, why was SFOR included in the campaign? Why did SFOR commanders allow to be pulled into that game against the Croatian self-rule? It is well known that SFOR mandate does not include the right to investigate bills, even for the "insulation material". Instead, its mandate is to take care of the security and provide support for the legitimate and legal institutions. From the founding of the Croatian People's Assembly and setting up of the inter-cantonal/inter-municipal council it has been said that that was not a security problem but a political attempt to temporarily organize the self-rule of the Croat people until the final political solution of the constitutional and political crisis in Bosnia-Hercegovina is reached. However, some are trying to portray that very important political issue as a security issue. Furthermore, they are trying to incite incidents with the goal of really transforming the issue into a security problem. For sure, the creators and moderators of the escalation of the crisis initiated a while ago, which culminated with the imposition of unconstitutional election rules and regulations before the most recent elections, believe that their chances to achieve their goals are bigger if they resort to force provided by SFOR, instead of sticking to the strength of their political arguments. When they realized that their political, and then even media campaigns were not producing results, they decided to recruit SFOR for their action. Even the "military intervention" against the Hercegovacka bank is another proof that some want to push BH Croats into an open clash with SFOR.
However, it is fine as long as SFOR remains on the political pitch. Of course, it is not good for SFOR, because it oversteps its mandate, but it is good for the people at whom this campaign is directed. Simply, it is unbelievable that SFOR commanders, senior officers of democratic armies, have agreed to be pulled into murky political waters, and agreed to finish a dirty job for the leaders of the international administration, who are largely responsible for this crisis. Can participation of professional soldiers in the media campaign using paid advertisements in the style of attention grabbing ads used to push underwear and Coca-Cola be an example for the domestic officers who are forbidden to participate in political activities? In general reevaluation of the justification for the mission of American military forces in the Balkans, it will be very interesting to hear the reaction of the new Republican administration to the information that their money is being used to pay for TV ads promoting "insulation material". No doubt, such a waste of money and political instrumentalization of military forces will speed up the decision to withdraw from this region.
How to reach compromise: However, as we said, SFOR is here only an instrument brandished by a part of the international administration. Exactly because of that they bear paramount responsibility for the overall process in BH. If they admit in private conversations that they made a mistake by imposing election rules and regulations, then they should also do that publicly. And not only admit, but also correct their mistake. In a recent interview to Vecernji List, Robert Barry stated that it was possible to reach compromise with the HDZ. If, stated Barry, vital national interests were defined, then we could go back to the old formula for the election of representatives in the House of Nations of the Federation BH Parliament. In other words, Barry admits that the rule is unconstitutional, but he sets conditions for the return to the previous state that have nothing to do with the issue. Namely, the definition of the vital national interests is a prerogative of every nation. If necessary, that can be regulated by the Constitution, but every nation has the right to elect its representatives in the House of Nations. That is the case in every multi-ethnic state, and it should be that way in BH.
Actually, it is obvious that the policy of a part of the international administration is to eliminate national parties. Unconstitutional election rules and regulations were used for that. After a logical reaction to the violation of the Constitution, that part of the international administration resorted to dismissals, punishment, criminalization and general threats. When, however, the Croatian self-rule was established as means for self-defense from extra-constitutional violence, all mechanisms were engaged, including SFOR, in order to suggest to the Croats that they do not have the right to do what they are doing, that that would lead them to self-isolation and that they will pay dearly for that.
They "internationals" actually took over the role of the one who decides what is beneficial for the members of the Croat component (HVO) of the Federation BH Army (VF), what is beneficial for the entrepreneurs, what is beneficial for the whole people, claiming at the same time that those elected by Croats to represent their interests were leading them to self-isolation for the sake of their own (criminal) interests.
The Alliance that was brought to power with assistance of the international administration's electoral engineering, is supposed to take care of Croats, in place of their legally elected representatives. And when the "Alliance authorities" lost every influence, and it does not make sense that they ever got it, on the HVO, police, etc., then the threats got more menacing. All of that, although logical, is senseless.
The deadline of 60 days given by the Croatian People's Assembly (HNS) for the initiation of serious talks with representatives of the international community, based on a clearly defined platform, is getting closer. At the same time, the life goes on and the society has to function. That is why all those who would like to dump their mistakes and responsibility for the constitutional and political crisis in BH on the HDZ and the HNS are, instead of seeking a solution, only making the crisis worse.
If the HDZ and other Croat political parties agreed to enter parliaments and fight for their rights in the manner usual for institutions, we would now have the situation in which their representatives would perpetually vote against, and the decisions would nevertheless be made against the interests of their electorate. Namely, there are no constitutional mechanisms that can guarantee the protection of vital national interests, especially since, thanks to electoral engineering and modification of electoral rules, the House of Nations has lost its original role, content and significance.
On the other hand, the Alliance is not what the mentioned part of the international administration hoped for. The Alliance has been transformed from the product of the international community into a political coalition of disobedient leaders who set conditions to their "uncles". The program that they publicly advocated has been significantly modified, and the Alliance has been extended with the addition of the SDA, spurned by the international community. Naturally, not formally, but politically by all means. Therefore, that new Bosniak People's Assembly (The SDP plus the Party for Bosnia-Hercegovina, and the SDA and a few small extremist parties, minus several Croat electoral losers) wants to remodel the process exactly in the institutions in which the HDZ has no chance, especially under such constitutional framework, of defending its interests.
Extremism of the Bosniak "People's Assembly", the desire to create a civic state based on the principle "one person one vote" has not been opposed by the international community, although it is counter to both the spirit and the letter of the Dayton Constitution. On the other hand, the proposals of the Croat People's Assembly, which reflect the spirit of the BH and the Dayton BH are a huge problem. Why? Because that body is outside institutions?
However, the latter problem is more easily solved than the former one. The Croatian People's Assembly respects the Constitution, while the other option wants a radical modification of the BH Constitution. The targeting of the Croatian self-rule and the attempt to impose security connotations on the problem should by no means ignore the open calls for the change of the Constitution by the Bosniak "People's Assembly". The path towards the solution is a dialog between these two ethnic groups, as well as the third one, which is running its own race between the international mediators towards the implementation of the Decision of the BH Constitutional Court. Threats by SFOR can only lead to a further radicalization of the situation. But, what if that is someone's true goal?