"This is Skinny Smith reporting for Radio NYC from the scene of the last incredible event. Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic announced that his country will withdraw its troops from the United Nations Disengagement Observer Force, which separates the Israeli and Syrian armies in the Golan Heights. He denies that this is the result of Croatia selling weapons to antigovernment fighters in Syria."
Planeloads of Weapons
The report on the weapons deal was undeniable; even the conservative New York Times said that this had been confirmed by "Western Officials;" it is safe to assume it referred to NATO. The decision to take out the 100 Croatian soldiers from the force came after that on February 25, the same newspaper reported that Saudi Arabia had underwritten a large purchase of infantry arms in Croatia. "According to United States and Western officials, in December arms left over from the Balkan wars of the 1990s began to reach rebels battling the forces of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria, via Jordan. Since then, officials said, several planeloads of weapons have left Croatia. Yugoslav weapons previously unseen in the conflict, including recoilless guns, assault rifles and machine guns, began to appear in videos posted by Syrian rebels on YouTube," NYT reported. The Croatian president claimed in his withdrawal announcement that the NYT report had made impossible for his troops to stay safely in the Golan Heights. Until recently, Croatia had been a traditional ally of Damascus.
Dealing with such a European topic, it was impossible not to think of "L'Autrichienne" while reading it. "The Austrian" was a popular French nickname for Marie Antoinette; its popularity is because it sounds like French for "the other bitch." It was an agreeable way of mentioning the Queen's promiscuity. The Croatian move wasn't born into a vacuum; it was the result of its "L'Autrichienne" influences.
On June 21, 2012, former Under Secretary of State Stuart E. Eizenstat—who served in the Clinton Administration—told Israeli newspaper Haaretz that the EU must encourage Croatia and Serbia to take responsibility for their roles in the Holocaust before granting them EU membership (see USA and Israel Extortion Croatia).
Croatia's President Ivo Josipovic issued in February 2012 an apology for his country’s role in the crimes committed against the Jews during the Second World War. Of course, the Republic of Croatia became independent only in 1991, many years after the WWII ended; this was not an obstacle for Israel and the USA, which greedily accepted the apology. In the abovementioned interview, Mr. Eizenstat said, "it is time for Croatia to commence a restitution program and the formation of an independent commission of international scholars to examine the country's wartime past." Israel claims that 30,000 of Croatia's Jews died during the Holocaust, which was 80% of the country's Jewish population at the time. "Now is the time for the European Union to exact the maximum amount of leverage," said the distinguished American, and then added "once they're in, the leverage is lost." Croatia is expected to become a full member of the EU in 2013; thus the USA and Israel have no time to lose if they expect to profit from the event. English richness allows a lot of latitude, "L'Autrichienne"-style. The American diplomat said "leverage" while he meant "extortion."
In this context, the Croatian actions appear in a more strategic context; Israel and the USA decided to maximize their extortonist leverage before Croatia formally enters the EU. Croatia was used to funnel weapons to the Syrian rebels. It wasn't all bad for Croatia, it lost the income of 100 soldiers, but it got rid of planeloads of old weapons.
As analyzed in Assad's Best Friend Attacks Syria, Israel and Syria have been engaged in a death dance for over a generation; in a quiet agreement they use each other as a means of control upon their own populations. For the umpteenth-time since 1973, Israel and Syria are playing on the same side. Netanyahu desperately needs an invincible enemy to hide from the social protests that forced him to call for early elections. Assad needs a coup de grâce, a death blow on the rebels. Israel supports the unwanted rebels with old, ineffective weapons while Assad can claim now that the rebels are working for Israel, and thus have no legitimacy. Another young nation with neither memory nor shame, Croatia "L'Autrichienne" became a manipulated pawn in a war foreign to its people.