I had to testify during 10 hours in the case of Milosevic. I still have to defend the former head of the General Staff of the Yugoslavian armies, General Dragoljub Oidanic. I was shocked by the record of my hearing; it was full of mistakes, omissions and incomplete phrases. With the military language and the simultaneous translation, there is almost nothing left (of my statement); I should have spoken in a more methodic way. However, I am satisfied with the video of my declaration. Using that material, I will publish a written version of the records along with Nikolai Ryjkov (in charge of the Commission on Yugoslavia in the Russian Duma at that time) and Evgueni Primakov (then prime minister).
Attorney Jeffrey Nice questioned our words. He accused us of illegally listening to political personalities when we were actually listening to Kozovian terrorists, one of who maintained, it is true, conversations with Madeleine Albright (it was Ibrahim Taci, whom Albright had promised a referendum about Kosovo in exchange for his approval of a NATO intervention). He also distorted my statements and told me that he forgave me because I grew up in a socialist country and I don’t understand western democracy, that I am a Slav and that I have to defend the Serbians.
I defended my honor and Russia’s.
There was no genocide of Albanese people in Kosovo. Different Albanese people, including officials, told me they lived well, that they held posts but that the boieviks had asked them to leave them. It has been showed that Turkish and Albanese-Caucasian mafias began the destabilization of Yugoslavia. The main point was Pristine. The crash of the Albanese financial pyramids, in 1996-1997, triggered things. Cheap weapons and explosives appeared. This drug-mafia was behind the Liberation Movement of Kosovo. The German secret services, with the help of the Turkish, took advantage of the situation.
The Russian government did not have a clear position with respect to the war. The Defense Ministry categorically opposed the arms embargo in 1999 but the Foreign Ministry supported it. We did not enough to avoid that war. We saw the NATO preparations. At that time, I said that there would be no war if the Yugoslav forces could cause losses to its future rival. Only force can contain force.

Vremya Novostyey (Russia)

« В Гаагском трибунале мне пришлось отстаивать честь России », by Leonid Ivashov, Vremya Novostyey, April 28, 2005. Text adapted from an interview.