Friday, May 29, 2015 - 08:37
Srebrenica air strike veto caused Dutch failure in 1995
Dutchbat never stood a chance in Srebrenica, because the Netherlands blocked the requested airstrike at the crucial moment, former Air Force officer Bart Wagenaar told the Telegraaf. According to Wagenaar, this allowed the Bosnian-Serb forces to take over the enclave, which led to the world's largest genocide since World War II - 8,372 Muslim men were killed. Wagenaar was part of the Defense Crisis Management Center before, during and after the fall of the enclave. He decided to talk to the Telegraaf after remaining silent for 20 years. Wagenaar states that the then Minister of Defense Joris Voorhoeve personally stopped the F-16 bombardments on Tuesday afternoon, July 11th, 1995. "Shortly after five o'clock I had to call UN envy Yasushi Akashi and put him through to the minister. 'Cancel all airstrikes', I heard Voorhoeve say." In April the court in Arnhem ruled that former Dutchbat Commander Thom Karremans and his two adjutants should not be prosecuted for complicity in war crimes and genocide. The relatives of three Muslim men that were killed in Srebrenica in 1995 had demanded their prosecution, saying that they knew that the three men would be killed when they sent them out of the enclave.