The British-American plan to “abolish” the Republic of Srpska: A threat based on nothing

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Several web portals reported on the “plan” to abolish the Republic of Srpska, which was initiated by ATV, although neither sources nor evidence was offered for such claims.


On July 10, 2022, the web portal of Alternative Television (ATV) published an article titled:

The British and Americans prepared a plan for the abolition of Srpska: This is a strategy

The article states that the “increased British presence in Bosnia and Herzegovina” has already “resulted in plans to abolish the Republic of Srpska and replace its officials”. There is an alleged plan to abolish the executive and legislative powers in the Republic of Srpska (RS). The plan is allegedly the result of a meeting of British and American operatives, which was held at Camp Butmir in Sarajevo. The command and intelligence center of the joint Task Force is said to be there.

The plan for the abolition of the Republic of Srpska includes the application of the Bonn powers, which plans to replace elected representatives in the Republic of Srpska, abolish the executive and legislative powers, which would practically disempower the governing bodies in the Republic of Srpska.

The article also talks about the alleged strategic positioning of EUFOR forces.

The operational plan, which has already been drawn up, envisages the positioning of NATO/Eufor forces, company-level to battalion-level in Brcko District, in order to cut the Republic of Srpska into two parts, as well as the training of highly mobile military police forces (such as the Carabinieri), which would have the ability to be deployed in a short period of time in any part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, for the purpose of confrontation with paramilitary units, police forces of the Republic of Srpska and civil disobedience, i.e., a rebellion of Serbs.

The article was shared by web portals RTRS, Otvoreno, Vijesti365, Prijedor 24h (.net), BLportal and Republika Srpska (.net). A day later, ATV published an article in which claims were repeated about the alleged plan to “abolish” the Republic of Srpska.

ATV finds out: Who came up with the plan to abolish the Republic of Srpska?

In addition to the claims about the alleged plan created by the British and Americans, this article also shared the reactions of officials from this entity. Milorad Dodik’s statement was shared, in which he says that “the British and Americans came here to support the Muslims”. The article also published the statement of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Srpska, Radovan Viskovic, who called for preserving the Dayton Agreement.

It goes on to talk about the alleged strategic positioning of EUFOR forces and the statements of “experts” that the execution of the alleged plan would be “a blow to the national issue”.

The whole plan, as we know, would be implemented through the strategic positioning of forces in EUFOR. They would be deployed at certain points, and they would have the support of NATO soldiers. Realization of the plan would be an attack on the national issue, experts say.

The article mentions the statement of Slobodan Zupljanin from the Organization of Army Seniors of the Republic of Srpska, who said that it is necessary for the RS to provide “all Serbian unity of the Serbian people in the region” without which “the task of the enemies of the Republic of Srpska will be easier”. In the conclusion of the article, it is stated that, according to the “plan”, international forces would be deployed in Brcko and that “larger military-police forces” would cause conflicts with the RS police.

The article is a transcript of a television report broadcast on Central news, an information program of Alternative Television.

On July 11, 2022, RTRS broadcast a video about the reactions of officials to claims about the plan to “abolish the RS”. The video clip lasts six minutes and 25 seconds and, in addition to the reactions of RS officials, which were also published in the ATV clip, also includes statements by political analysts Aleksandar Pavic and Srdjan Perisic, former VRS general and security expert Dragomir Keserovic, security expert Predrag Ceranic, the leader of the United Srpska Nenad Stevandic and the president of the Socialist Party Petar Djokic.

The video clip was also published in the form of an article on the RTRS web portal, where ATV is mentioned as the source for the claims.

Certain media outlets that reported on these articles suggested that they were theories propagated by RTRS or ATV, and emphasized in their broadcasts that the source of the claims was the television, which is under US sanctions due to its connection with Milorad Dodik and his family. Claims about the “plan to destroy the Republic of Srpska” were reported by N1, BHIndex, Usk info and Novi.

The web portal Klix published an article questioning the accuracy of the claims made, comparing these narratives to the recent case of a fabricated story about a plot to kidnap Milorad Dodik.

What are the facts?

Articles published by the ATV web portal do not mention the sources for the claims about the plan to “destroy the Republic of Srpska”, nor do they provide any evidence that would point to the accuracy of the information posted. Instead of evidence, it was stated that the “operational plan” was drawn up at a meeting of British and American operatives in Butmir.

It is also not explained how the author, or authors, of the articles (and reports), gained insight into the “secret plan that resulted in the meeting in Butmir”.

Due to the lack of evidence and incomplete information, which is impossible to verify, the claims made in the articles cannot be considered credible.

On the website Medijska pismenost (Media literacy), edited by Raskrinkavanje, it is stated that any credible information must be based on facts.

If the news you are reading provides detailed information about something, but does not provide any proof or source for the claims made, or refers exclusively to information obtained from a (real or fictional) anonymous source, it is certainly unverified information that should not be considered credible.

Claims about the alleged plan to “abolish” the Republic of Srpska in the articles of ATV and RTRS were mostly commented on by politicians from the ruling SNSD and experts close to the politics of Milorad Dodik. In the statements of these politicians and analysts, who do not question the accuracy of the allegations about the existence of a plan to “abolish” the RS, there is a narrative about “all-Serbian unity” and “preserving the Republic of Srpska”, along with rhetoric that suggests that the survival of the community is conditioned by the strengthening of the collective national identity.

ATV is under US sanctions due to its connection with BiH Presidency member Milorad Dodik. The connection between the media and the politician is described on the website of the US Treasury Department.

The press release on the sanctions imposed on Milorad Dodik and Alternative Television on this page states that ATV is privately owned by a company closely related to Dodik’s family.

However, (Milorad) Dodik has personal control over ATV behind the scenes, such as requiring personal approval of media stories related to politically sensitive topics. Dodik bought ATV to consciously and explicitly promote his own agenda, which includes his efforts to smear other political figures, smooth his public image, and advance his personal and political goals.

Claims published on the ATV web portal have often been the subject of debunking analyses. Thus, 48 ​​claims in the articles of this media were assessed as “manipulation of facts”, 41 claims were assessed as disinformation, and 36 times the claims published by this web portal were assessed as fake news distribution.

Secret plans

The claims about the American and British “plan” to “abolish” the Republic of Srpska and remove its officials, and the manner in which these allegations are disseminated, are reminiscent of the “conspiracy” theory about the plan to kidnap Milorad Dodik. Raskrinkavanje wrote about it in the analysis from March 31, 2022.

The “kidnapping” claims, which resemble the plot of a spy movie, were published by an obscure web portal of dubious ownership, using an “anonymous source”, without providing any evidence to confirm that it was a real, credible source with any connection or by insight into “secret operations” of NATO. These claims reached other web portals, as well as public media such as Srna and RTRS.

A similar thing happened in the case of sharing unverified claims from ATV about the alleged plan to abolish the RS, for which no source was given nor are they based on facts, and which can cause negative emotions of fear and contribute to the incitement of inter-ethnic hatred.

At the same time, such narratives, which create a sense of threat from an external enemy and demand unity in defense of national identity, come just a few months before the General Elections in BiH. Collectively inducing emotions of fear and threat contributes to the homogenization of the electorate and identifies actors from the ruling SNSD as protectors of the people.

Additionally, articles about the “plan” against the Republic of Srpska were published ahead of July 11, when the media’s attention was largely devoted to the commemoration of the 27th anniversary of the genocide in Srebrenica. Nevertheless, the media close to the SNSD, as well as most other media in the RS, reported on this event sparingly, focusing on other topics, which you can read about in this analysis.

Claims about the plan of the “Americans and the British” to replace the political leadership in the Republic of Srpska and to “abolish” this entity were published on a number of web portals and in publicly owned media, although the source of such allegations is unknown and there is no evidence presented that this plan exists. It was commented on by politicians and experts, without any critical deviation towards allegations that cannot be considered credible. Such media reports, published during the pre-election period, on the one hand, further polarize the society in BiH, while on the other hand, they homogenize the electorate in the Republic of Srpska by creating the impression of a threat, even though no evidence has been offered for it.

(Author: Alena Beširević,

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