Comment 16 Mar 17

Why Britain Won’t Shut up About Montenegro

If Britain’s leaders seem obsessed about the ‘Russian plot’ in Montenegro, it is because they want to keep America and Russia as far apart as possible.

Marcus Tanner
BIRN
London
British Prme Minister Theresa May used the alleged Montenegro coup plot as an argument for the West to boost its efforts to counter Russian propaganda. Photo: Jay Allen/Crown Copyright/Flickr

When Montenegro’s rulers first made the dramatic claim that they had nearly fallen victim to Russian-backed coup – whose plotters intended to kill the then Prime Minister, Milo Djukanovic, they can hardly have dreamed that a major European power would take up their unlikely-sounding story and run with it so enthusiastically.

Months on, despite a mass of still-unanswered questions, including whether the attempted coup occurred, the authorities in Britain are still hammering away on the coup - not as a claim but as an established fact - as living proof that Vladimir Putin will stop at nothing – not even at killing European leaders - to reassert Russia’s power in the Balkans.

The decision of the British to adopt the “Russian plot in Montenegro” as a foreign policy cause, to be repeated ad nauseam, was heralded in the Sunday Telegraph newspaper on February 19.

 This authoritative, “quality” newspaper, close to the ruling Conservative Party, suddenly – surely to the surprise of its readers – devoted three entire pages to the subject under the ominous headline, “Russia Plotted to Overthrow Montenegro’s Government”. 

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