Following the publication „Fixing Dayton: A New Deal for Bosnia and Herzegovina“ published by the prestigious American "Wilson" Center, the newly elected US President Joe Biden will definitely try to improve the situation in B&H.
This was said in an exclusive interview for "Dnevni Avaz" by a prominent associate of the Austrian "Marshall Plan Foundation" and the director of the global program for Europe at the "Wilson" center, Daniel Hamilton.
Hamilton is one of the most prominent experts in the United States for Europe, transatlantic relations and American foreign policy. He regularly testifies before the US Senate and Congress and various European parliaments, he is an award-winning author of a number of publications and a former high-ranking US diplomat.
- However, there is no guarantee that Biden will listen to what we wrote in our publication "Fixing Dayton: A New Deal for Bosnia and Herzegovina ". In my opinion, there will be interest in cooperating with the European Union and the citizens of B&H to improve the situation in and around the country. We offer a number of suggestions on how this can be done - Hamilton explained.
Speaking about the biggest problem with which B&H is facing, Hamilton says they are ethno-nationalist politicians.
- So, politicians and kleptocratic elites skillfully manipulate the provisions of the Dayton Peace Agreement, all in order to plunder the country. That is not their only goal, robbery is the primary one, but there is also the politicization of the judiciary and weakening of state institutions in order to maintain their privileged positions - Hamilton emphasized.
However, he points out that sustainable reform is possible, but only if it is based on a consensus for change among the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The reform process
- There are numerous ideas for reforming B&H. In our report, we describe a number of opportunities we have heard from citizens. The role of the USA and the EU can only be to provide support and create space for this reform process, which must ultimately be initiated by the citizens themselves - said Hamilton.
He added that the situation in B&H is currently deteriorating, with more and more space being given to malicious influences that are trying to destabilize the country in every possible way.
- I do not necessarily predict a sudden start of a new war, but it is evident that the situation in B&H will be worse, which destroys the prospects of B&H for integration, and thus the entire region. B&H is vital to the entire Western Balkans. Therefore, the success of the reform in B&H will have a positive effect in the entire region, as well as the failure, which will probably make things worse not only for the citizens of B&H but also in the entire region - Hamilton concluded.
In his rich political career, Daniel Hamilton has held several senior positions in the State Department, including the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary for European Affairs, which is responsible for NATO, the OSCE and issues of transatlantic security and Balkan affairs. He was also the special American coordinator for the stabilization of Southeast Europe, the assistant director for policy planning in the mandate of two American secretaries of state, as well as the director for policy in the Bureau for European Affairs.