January 18, 2015
“Montenegro should be a force for peace and solidarity in the world, and not a small cog in the machine of the new Crusades”.
In an interview with the Montenegrin National News Agency (MINA), published 10 January 2015, the Chairman of the Movement for Neutrality of Montenegro (MNMNE), Professor Filip Kovacevic, stated that, in the first part of 2014, many government officials and their “Atlanticist mentors and highly-paid lobbyists” claimed that Montenegro would get an invitation to join NATO at the organization’s summit in Wales last September.
“At the same time, I publicly stated that this would not happen. Now it is easy to see who was right. Getting the invitation depends on the overall geopolitical dynamic in Europe,” said Kovacevic, asserting that we would see more and more skepticism toward the policies of Washington, especially given the open confrontation with Russia, which came about as a result of US imposition of its Atlanticist, neoliberal priorities on the European Union, which caused a great deal of economic damage.
According to Kovacevic, this means that NATO’s influence, whose only reason for existing is “the military occupation and intelligence surveillance of Europe by the Anglo-American, imperial centers of power”, will gradually weaken.
“In line with this trend, NATO will not have enough strength to expand further and it will find it more and more difficult to keep even the present member states together,” said Kovacevic.
He pointed out the example of Turkey which does not follow the aggressive NATO politics of sanctions against Russia, but instead has negotiated long-term economic projects worth billions of dollars.
Kovacevic expected the same tendency to manifest within other NATO member states as well, especially those whose historical tradition encompasses very close relations with Russia.
“Those who conceptualize and implement Anglo-American foreign policy, it seems, bit off more than they could chew, and now what will happen is that they will be unpleasantly awakened from their dream of global domination by the coordinated activities of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa),” warned Kovacevic.
According to him, if Montenegro enters NATO, it will be due to no fault of its citizens, but due entirely to “the corrupt dealings of the regime of the prime minister, Milo Djukanovic” that the country finds itself on “the losing side of history”.
This, asserted Kovacevic, would have dangerous repercussions for the citizens of Montenegro, and is also absolutely unacceptable from the perspective of the Montenegrin anti-hegemonic, libertarian historical tradition.
He claimed that during the six and a half decades of its existence, NATO intelligence services have done numerous things, of which there is much evidence, to subvert democracy and human rights in the member states under the directives of Washington and London.
“It is enough to mention only the criminal, anti-democratic ‘Operation Gladio’ in Italy, and there were similar operations in other European countries as well. That is why NATO’s tutoring Montenegro on its ‘lack of the rule of law’ should be taken as a insult to the historical truth, and to the hundreds of innocent victims of such operations,” noted Kovacevic.
Commenting on NATO demands for the reform of Montenegrin Agency for National Security (ANB), Kovacevic stated that those demands articulated NATO’s wish to fill the Agency with its own puppets and spies.
“This does not mean that citizens will be under less invasive and humiliating surveillance because the priority of NATO has never been to curtail the abuses of its member states’ secret services. At the same time, this could lead to dangerous consequences because these NATO-controlled individuals could, against the national interest of the Montenegrin citizens, involve Montenegro in conflicts with NATO’s enemies, which are becoming more and more numerous,” added Kovacevic.
He said that under NATO’s urgent pressure and insistence, the government of Montenegro founded another intelligence agency: the Military Intelligence Agency. “There is very little that is written about this secretive Agency, whose activities are just as much a threat to the democratization of Montenegro as the activities of the ANB.”
Kovacevic stated that it was not surprising that public support for NATO membership was low, and he interpreted it as indicative of the ‘geopolitical sophistication’ of ordinary citizens in Montenegro.
“Montenegrin citizens do not want to participate in imperialistic attacks on nations whose only fault is that they do not want to have their natural and economic resources under the control of Anglo-American financial centers. Montenegro should be a force for peace and solidarity in the world, and not a small cog in the machine of the new Crusades,” he said.
Asked whether the Movement for Neutrality (MNMNE) plans any activities which advocate holding a referendum on Montenegro’s NATO membership, Kovacevic stated that everything the organization did was geared toward making the referendum inevitable.
“Regardless of the opinion of corrupt members of the Montenegrin Parliament and their NATO lobbyists, membership of any international organization, let alone an organization such as NATO, limits the country’s sovereignty. This is why the only politically legitimate route is to directly ask citizens their opinion. Any other way is equivalent to a coup d’etat,” he warned.
Answering the question as to what MNMNE’s activities would be in case of an invitation to NATO membership, Kovacevic said that MNMNE is a new geopolitical force in Montenegro which will only get stronger in the coming period and acquire even more allies in the world.
“The members of our International Advisory Board are world-famous intellectuals, noted for their fight for global justice. We also received strong support from former US Congressman Dennis Kucinich and other influential international figures,” he noted.
According to Kovacevic, the progressive international community recognizes the dedication of MNMNE to just relations between peoples and nations, as well as “our desire to turn Montenegro into a favorite destination for all people of good will.”
“We will work on a new conception of Montenegrin foreign policy, which will enable it to host the headquarters of certain international organizations, for instance the BRICS bank. This will lead to the significant investment in local infrastructure and a lot of new job openings,” he pointed out.
Kovacevic reiterated that the examples of other militarily neutral countries in Europe and beyond show that it is not true that neutrality would cost more than NATO membership.
“NATO member states will have to spend at least 2 percept of GDP on defense, whereas all neutral states spend considerably less. Claims about the costs of neutrality offered by the Government are not to be believed because corrupt officials do not want to consider in a rational and calm manner any alternatives to NATO membership.”
Kovacevic stated that it has been a while since he had publicly called for the Minister of Defense, Milica Pejanovic-Djurisic, to resign due to the continued participation of Montenegro in the “expensive and useless” NATO mission in Afghanistan, which did not fulfil any of its stated goals.
“To throw away millions of euros in the deserts of Afghanistan while more and more citizens of Montenegro lose their jobs and fall below the poverty line is the height of alienation and arrogance. In this, as in many other areas of activity, the Ministry of Defense is a textbook example of irresponsibility to citizens, superciliousness towards its employees, and servility towards the imperial centers of power,” he underlined.
Kovacevic said that this was the reason why he approached the Ministry’s statements with a great deal of skepticism. “And anyway, their projections last only until they get another phone call from NATO headquarters in Brussels.”
Asked if he was satisfied with the way political parties that are against NATO membership present their views to the public, and whether MNMNE would intensify cooperation with them, he replied that MNMNE cooperates with everyone who believes that Montenegro has a mission to fulfil in the world, a mission which consists of building bridges of trust among different nations, cultures, and civilizations.
“With all, including political parties and non-governmental organizations, MNMNE cherishes the culture of dialogue, and we believe that we will continue to play a constitutive role in a new and different Montenegrin foreign policy,” concluded Kovacevic.
Translated by Filip Kovacevic