Aletho News


Croatia’s President Doesn’t Want Be West’s ‘Circus Poodle’ in Ukraine Crisis

By Ilya Tsukanov – Sputnik – 31.01.2023

The Croatian head of state took flak from Zagreb’s NATO and EU allies last year after threatening to block Finland and Sweden’s NATO applications for membership, but was overruled by parliament, which ratified the accession protocols in July.

Croatian President Zoran Milanovic sparked a fresh rift with Brussels and Kiev after assuring that Crimea will inevitably remain part of Russia, and blasting the West’s “manic” desire to try to collapse Russia or institute regime change in the country.

“Between 2014 and 2022, we watched as someone provoked Russia with the intention of starting this conflict,” Milanovic told reporters Monday while discussing last week’s decision to send German tanks to Ukraine, referring to the 2014 US-backed Euromaidan coup in Kiev.

“What we are doing as the collective West is deeply immoral. German tanks will only unite Russia and China even more. My job as president is to get away from this, and not be a circus poodle. Any involvement in this [crisis] is extremely dangerous,” he said.

Warning that the tank deliveries would only prolong a pointless conflict, Milanovic said he is “against sending any lethal arms there” because as a nuclear power Russia cannot not be defeated.

“Russia has 6,000 nuclear warheads. What is the goal [of the Ukraine conflict – ed.note]? The disintegration of Russia? A change of power? They are talking about ripping Russia apart. It’s manic. The Serbs and I hated each other less. It was a much more terrible war in our country than in Ukraine,” the Croatian president said, recalling the Western-instigated Slav-on-Slav bloodshed of the 1990s in Yugoslavia.

Stressing that “leading German generals are saying” that Crimea will “never be Ukraine again,” Milanovic urged the West to get off its high horse in talking about Russia “annexing” the Black Sea peninsula, and pointed out that Kosovo was “annexed” and “stolen” from Serbia by the West.

“Who annexed Kosovo? The international community, including us,” he said. “It was taken from Serbia by force, it was extraction, a part of Serbian territory was taken away.”

‘It’s Armageddon’

Milanovic expressed fears that “deranged emotions and hatred are leading Europe to great danger” amid the prospects of a full-on war with Russia. “The question is not how much we help Ukraine. This is not help, this is torture. They should have been forced to sit down at the negotiating table. 300,000 Ukrainians should die [to end the conflict?, ed.note]. It hurts my heart, as I’m watching this – it’s Armageddon.”

Milanovic’s remarks sparked outrage from Kosovo and Albania, while a Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman called them “unacceptable” for “calling into question the territorial integrity of Ukraine.” The spokesman also expressed appreciation for the “steadfast support” Croatia has provided, notwithstanding the president’s sentiments.

Milanovic rivals his Serbian neighbors when it comes to outspoken criticism of NATO and EU policy amid the Ukraine conflict – with the difference being that Croatia is actually part of both Western-dominated institutions. The politician has spoken out repeatedly against Zagreb getting involved, and expressed doubts about the effectiveness of Western sanctions on Moscow, recently calling them “total nonsense.”

Milanovic’s rhetoric has not been matched by actual Croatian government policy, with the government of Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic towing the NATO and EU line and taking one of the toughest anti-Russian stances in the Western Balkans. The Croatian presidency is largely a ceremonial role, although nominally it is supposed to provide for cooperation on conducting foreign policy.

January 31, 2023 - Posted by | Aletho News | , , ,

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