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Source: NOVINSKA AGENCIJA "OSLOBODENJE" NEWS AGENCY via Chicago-Kent College of Law

U.N. soon forgets Serb slap in face of Boutros-Ghali - Commentary
3 Dec 1994 by Vlado Staka
SARAJEVO, Dec. 2 (OSLOBODJENJE AGENCY - ONASA) --      
         During
Boutros Boutros-Ghali's visit to Sarajevo Wednesday, news
leaked among journalists that Bosnian Serb leader Radovan
Karadzic's refusal to meet with Boutros Ghali in United Nations
controlled territory (Sarajevo airport) threw into despair the
organizers of the visit -- the leadership of the U.N. mission
in the former Yugoslavia -- who quickly made a somewhat comical
plan: Boutros-Ghali's special envoy Yasushi Akashi was supposed
to cross the Brotherhood and Unity Bridge, which divides the
parts of Sarajevo controlled by the Bosnian Government and the
Bosnian Serbs, and beg the Serb authorities in Grbavica to
carry to Karadzic a message asking him for an urgent meeting.
When Akashi appeared beside Boutros-Ghali at a press conference
soon after, it was clear that the plan had been abandoned in
order to prevent the complete collapse of the U.N.'s authority
in the eyes of the world. Boutros-Ghali could not have gone to
the Serb stronghold of Pale, as Karadzic demanded, (even if he
had wanted to), because the trip would have represented a de
facto recognition of the existence of an ethnic Serb state.
Karadzic knew that Boutros-Ghali would not be able to go to
Pale when he refused to meet him at Sarajevo airport. True,
Boutros-Ghali said that Karadzic's refusal to meet him is an
"ill favor that Karadzic is doing his people", but he did not
explain what he meant. The most probable explanation is that
Pale may "earn" some sort of an anathema from the international
community for this "protocol incident", but in fact this will
hardly hurt anyone "up there in the hills" above Sarajevo.
Actually, what Pale wants is the status of a mentally retarded
"partner" in solving the Bosnian crisis. From the psychological
point of view, this policy has helped Pale more than once,
since Western diplomacy is based on the "art of compromise". To
be more exact, it has traditionally been taught to say one
thing, think another, and do a third -- according to protocol.
Pale, however, think what they say and usually do what they
say, no matter how idiotic this seems, whether in this case of
Boutros-Ghali, or when they threatened to shoot down any plane
that tried to land at Sarajevo airport -- without any
protocol. There is method in this alleged Serb madness, and
the method is obvious. It consists of an ambition to drive away
the international community from these areas, to eliminate the
U.N. Protection Force, and to finish the war in Bosnia. The
problem is that the whole concept of the UNPROFOR mission is
based on the willingness of "both sides", therefore of Pale as
well, to cooperate with it. It took the U.N. more than two
years to realize they are simply an obstacle for the Serbs.
The diplomatic slap in the face for Boutros-Ghali (the
unprecedented violation of international protocol) has already
stopped hurting, so far as the fat bureaucratic cheek of the
U.N. is concerned. UNPROFOR has reported that U.N. Commander in
Bosnia General Michael Rose is going to Pale "to open channels
of communication". So the whole game begins again.

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