However, Mr Fisk's interpretation is completely beside the facts.
The document "revealed" by Mr Fisk was made public by the Netherlands Ministry of Defence a year ago in the official report on Srebrenica, based on an extensive briefing of Dutch UN personnel. In this report, which was widely distributed and translated into English, and in response to parliamentary questions, the UN order was described in full detail.
The reasons why the order could not be implemented by the Dutch UN commander were also given.
His military assessment of the situation, hours after the fall of Srebrenica itself, was that defending the military compound in Potocari would provoke heavy shelling by the Bosnian Serb army, which had completely surrounded this compound, in which Dutchbatt and thousands of refugees were present. This would have certainly meant a very high number of casualties, especially among the refugees.
It is important to note that this assessment was shared by Sector North East of Unprofor, which communicated its views to Unprofor headquarters.
HANS van der HEUVEL
Director of Information
Ministry of Defence