Milorad Dodik met with the Prime Ministers of Hungary and Slovenia, Viktor Orban and Janez Jansa.
Whatever someone thinks about Dodik’s policy, and decent people think all the worst, it cannot be stated that it has no direction and its allies.
Years of alliance
Dodik and the SNSD have maintained good relations with right-wing political factions in the world for years now. BesidesOrban and Jansa, the SNSD cooperates with the Freedom Party in Austria, the Northern League in Italy, whose leader Matteo Salvini was also prime minister in 2018 and 2019, and the French National Alliance (formerly the National Front) Marin Le Pen Marine, and his close and good relations with official Moscow are constantly confirmed by Dodik’s frequent meetings with Lavrov and Putin and the unreserved support that Russia provides to his demands.
Also, Dodik met regularly with the president of the FreedomParty and former Austrian Vice-Chancellor Heinz-Christian Strache, who retired after the famous Ibiza affair. Strache was one of the few European leaders who openly said that Republika Srpska (RS) “has the right to independence”.
Lobbying for chaos
Shortly before Dodik’s meeting with Jansa and Orban, Zeljka Cvijanovic also visited Hungary and Poland, where she met with their officials. Both countries are ruled by right-wing anti-liberal parties.
Of course, it is obvious what motivated both Dodik and Cvijanovic in the last meetings: the RS leadership is looking for support for the last adventure of striking the state and unilaterally taking over the competencies of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH).
Dodik connected and fitted in perfectly among those who are the only ones in today’s world who can support his ultranationalist separatist policy – populist right-wingers, that is “sovereignists”, as they like to call themselves, who now rule in several countries in Europe, and represent a respectable force in several others. Dodik has imposed himself in that world as an equal partner, who is gladly seen among the presidents and prime ministers of that bloc.
So, when Dodik’s lobbyist in the United States (U.S.), Obrad Kesic, states that currently, seven European Union (EU)members support the secession of RS, that may not be so far from the truth.
And perhaps there was not so much danger in the nationalist right-wing policy supporting the secession of RS as the question of which strong politicians who support a united, multiethnic,and civic BiH, pro-Bosnian leaders are cooperating with nowadays.
Are there any social democratic, liberal, democrat leaders that any of our politicians meet?
Presidency members Zeljko Komsic and Sefik Dzaferovic mostly meet with lower Western officials serving in BiH and are not able to reach more serious statesmen.
The collapse of diplomacy
SDA leader Bakir Izetbegovic completely subordinated his foreign policy to unreserved service to the interests of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, so he spent most of the unique meeting with Angela Merkel in 2018, according to witnesses, arguing with the German Chancellor about whether should have been allowed to Erdogan to hold a pre-election rally in Sarajevo, which was banned in Germany.
The solid diplomatic network we had after the war was mostly destroyed, our leaders have almost no reputation and no connections in the world, while Western politicians who had sympathy for BiH after the war due to suffering and defense of civic values are mostly no longer on the scene.
Now, when Bosniaks desperately hope for Western intervention to stop Dodik’s adventurism from hitting the state and institutions, fewer and fewer leaders in the world seem to hear them.
But it is the expected result of at least a decade of irresponsible and disastrous foreign policy.