We focused on it, not only because it is a "journalistic curiosity", in a flood of telegrams to the two legends of the defense of the central Bosnia Croats sent from "the field", but also as an illustration of an ever more frequent reaction and the attitude of the local Croats which can be summed up with these words: IF KORDIC AND BLASKIC HAVE TO GO TO THE HAGUE, THAN IT IS AN HONOR TO BE THERE.
"I don't want to give any statements," was general Tihomir Blaskic's reaction when I asked him about the indictment; he responded decisively, like a soldier, just the way he was during the whole duration of this war which had been imposed on Croats, just the way he was when we together inspected the village of Krizanicevo and Buhine Kuce where the muslim units tried to bury the Croats of central Bosnia through the murder of civilians. He added: " Don't take it personally. I'm just defending myself this way: of course, I am not ashamed of my deeds."
Let's consider the facts: Last June, during the preparations for the HDZ [largest Croatian political party in Bosnia, a sister party of Croatian HDZ, the ruling party in Croatia] Bosnia-Hercegovina congress, the district court in Zenica (read Muslim court) issued an indictment against Dario Kordic. Even then it was obvious that Kordic was one of the most serious candidates for the president of the party [HDZ]. Of course, the politicians who had been promoted in the meantime, although some of them had never formally belonged to the party, wanted to grab both "state" and "party" power in Herceg-Bosna. Especially Kresimir Zubak, then and today the president of the Presidential council and the Federation "boss". It is the fact that at the congress, Kordic was elected the party president with overwhelming support and that Zubak, although one of the candidates for that post, wasn't even present at the session at which the secret voting results were announced, although this would have made sense since he had already been calling for "the unity of the Croatian people."
Only "politically blind" people do not understand that Zubak wasn't aiming at the vicepresidents. The "bullet" was supposed to hit newly elected Kordic. In the "common" interest, the difficulties were ironed out at the "higher" place, but the embers still burn in the ashes. It is also obvious that the "indictment" of the district court in Zenica was supposed to demonstrate support of the muslim leadership to those who wanted to use "the Federation moment" and take over HDZ.
Time goes by but little is forgotten. Instead of strengthening the institutions of the Croatian Republic of Herceg-Bosna, which was emphasized as the most important goal at the HDZ party congress, extra-institutional battle for personal power gains in intensity. The often stated claims of Kresimir Zubak, first in the "state hierarchy", and Dr. Jadranko Prlic, prime minister of Herceg-Bosna for almost four years, that "we have completely built all the levers of the system," sound so silly. And again we come back to the question: why were the indictments against Croats issued right now? It would be easiest to say that this is a "muslim", actually Alija's, plot. However, it would be better to turn to ourselves and admit that the indictments are to a large extent a result of Croatian mistakes. While the Croatian warriors, battle-proven warriors, were accused in the Muslim media for alleged crimes, the "institutions and levers of the system" were quiet. Why did they not, if they already exist, demand from THE HAGUE to examine the facts of the massacres in Croatian villages of Orliste, Trusine, Uzdol, Krizancevo, Doljani...etc. etc.
Is it only Alija Izetbegovic's fault that his one year mandate lasts more than five years and a few months?
Is it Izetbegovic's fault that the Presidency of Herceg-Bosna is a group of individuals without clear duties and that the HDZ Presidency and the government of Herceg-Bosna exist more on "paper" than in reality?
Is it Izetbegovic's fault that for months there have been no Croats in the Federal government, while the government of Herceg-Bosna is headed by "the deputies of the deputies' deputies"? Of course, Izetbegovic is still doing his job, also because of the fact that "the institutions and levers of the authority in Herceg-Bosna" haven't done what, on behalf of the victims from Orliste and Uzdol, they must have done. Has anyone been wondering why has there been so much attention regarding the Mostar Croats? It seems exactly because the County authorities in Mostar, from the county council to the city HDZ organization, are doing their job. If someone doesn't trust me, just consider the number of recently opened companies, schools, apartments, galleries, etc. in Mostar. Isn't it absurd that neither the presidency nor the government of Herceg-Bosna have a legal nor economic adviser, although in Mostar, there are faculties for both disciplines at the Croatian university. All this is only seemingly unrelated to the topic. Let us go back to the legally and in every other way incomplete indictments against Muslim leaders and commanders who have committed numerous massacres of Croats. It is easy to say: "we have a Commission for war crimes." We have a lot of things, but most of them only exist on paper. A lot of agreements and treaties have been signed for and about Herceg-Bosna, but the legal advice of the Mostar University law faculty has never been sought. Maybe politicians know everything! Only now the documents are coming out of archives.
Croats, due to their army and strength, have liberated 85 percent of the free territory in Bosnia-Hercegovina. They will not allow that their leaders be accused of war crimes. Croats, however, must consider the passivity of the institutions of Herceg-Bosnia in this affair. Hell is not always in "someone else".