False claim 1: Variations on the theme that "Milosevic was not a Communist dictator - he held elections, he opened the economy, etc."
Reality: Milosevic, as head of the Communist party, seized power in february 1988. He paid lip service to "reform" by holding elections in which his SPS Communists received 80.5% of the vote and the only other party of any size - the Communist JUL - received 10%. JUL was led, of course, by Milosevic's wife.
And if awarding tons of state contracts and monopolies to regime supporters is "market economics" you guys need to go back to the drawing board.
Milosevic was a dictator and his party, the SPS, was and is an openly Marxist party.
False claim 2: "Handke is not a Communist. He met with Serbian Orthodox churchmen!"
reality: Handke was a founding member of Die Grzer Gruppe the writer's organization of the KPO - an openly Stalinist Austrian political party. Die Grazer Gruppe was founded in the winter of 1960/1961 - Handke was one of the first 10 or 20 people to join. As far as I'm concerned that makes him a founding member and any claim that he was not is simply semantics.
As far as people being "more liberal" in college than they are later: Handke was not a "liberal" in college. He was a Stalinist in college. And he remains a Communist along with his colleague Elfriede Jellinek.
Meeting with representatives of the Serbian Orthodox Church means nothing - the Serbian Orthdox Church was the most notorious and disgustingly obsequious collaborator with Communism of any of the national churches.
False claim 3: "America's involvement in Serbia was illegal! It's wrong to bomb military targets on Easter! America murdered 2000 Serbs!"
Reality: Serbian troops - who themselves had no problem carrying out military operations on Easter and every other holiday in the Serbian Orthodox calendar, so quit whining about the US carrying out military operations on the same day - murdered easily hundreds and perhaps thousands of Kosovars including women and children. Srebrenica happened. It is ridiculous that I have to say it, but Srebrenica happened.
America's involvement was entirely legal - not only in terms of international law, but also by the only standard that really matters: the US Congress authorized the intervention.
America "murdered" no one in Serbia. If Milosevic had ceased his criminal activity, it would not have been necessary to intervene. All the blood is on your hero's hands.
False claim 4: "Since Clinton opposed Milosevic, he must have been a decent guy."
Reality: The GOP opposed Milosevic just as Clinton did. Every decent person in the world opposed Milosevic, and so did indecent opportunists like Clinton.
Who supported Milosevic? A who's who of scummy anti-American filth: Edward Herman, Noam Chomsky, Diana Johnstone, harold Pinter, Saddam Hussein's attorney Ramsay Clark, George Galloway, etc.
As for the claims that Clinton conspired with Al-Qaeda in Albania in order to create incidents hoping that Milosevic would react and enable Clinton to attack him - this belongs in the realm of lunatic conspiracy theory and should be debated on Counterpunch, not FR.
Reality: EVERYBODY living in that part of the world in the 50s, 60s, and 70s was a communist; the alternative was being a corpse. By the early 90s, Milosevic had grown out of it.
Just give it a try, please.
"Srebrenica happened. It is ridiculous that I have to say it, but Srebrenica happened.
America's involvement was entirely legal - not only in terms of international law, but also by the only standard that really matters: the US Congress authorized the intervention."
****With most of the posts I either agree or I didn't make claim to it anyway, except for these two, here.
Americans involvement was authorized, yes; but based on enormous fabrications based on partial truths to make them seem all true. There were no 10,000 Kosovo ALb murdered by an stretch. Srebrenica happened, yes....but no where near 8,000 as reported. Most of them departed, and only about a max of 3,000 were actually killed. This is what you do to insurgents, is you fight them. We're rightfully doing it in Afghanistan and Iraq, and very well. We have more to kill also. This is the true story, as Rajak was also a fabrication mostly designed by the KLA.... Did you know that in the 80's, Milosevic came to the U.S. to study as a Banker. As a matter of history, he was approached by CIA and long story short turned into a politician, with the support for his return to Serbia to become a presidential candidate. However, he became a nationalist, turned his back on the U.S., and we lost him. Clinton, in his infinite wisdom and to fulfill the strategy we started in 1948, to break up Yugoslavia; went to our Afganistan "allies against Russia", and brought them to Bosnia to do what they do best. Stir up trouble, an insurgency, and thus the Serbs fell into this trap. Oh yes, they came across heavy handed, no questioning that......but, a lot was instigation and their thoughtless response to the threat. It was Muzzies from Afghanistan joining with Bosnian Muzzies with our blessings....There are several bonified video tapes that actually show the Muh with Holbrooke, NATO repts etc...in Bosnia. It's on tape...........It's a captured tape that is actually quite common now among those who have been researching this even closely. Case closed.
How convenient! Anyone who disagrees with you, you automatically labeled a "Milosevic shill" -- the refuge of the admittedly lame logician.
I do not support Milosevic, nor does the current Serb government (or most of the posters here) -- the Serbs (with the support of the Serbian Orthodox Church) tried to oust Milosevic in 1996. Remember the protests in Belgrade? But no one raised a finger to help them then, instead we waited three years later and bombed those same people. Why? Because the Kosovo Albanians had not gotten their independence bid on the table yet. The end-game wasn't ready yet.
False claim 4: "Since Clinton opposed Milosevic, he must have been a decent guy."
Milosevic was far from "a decent guy". He was a murderous opportunist who was willing to wear whatever mantle he thought would empower him at the moment -- and that was something he and Clinton had in common.
But there were two things that Milosevic was NOT -- an ideologue (communist or Serb Nationalist) Milosevic could have cared less what ideology he was wearing today or yesterday as long as it got him what he wanted, and that could only be derived from "keeping as much Yugoslavia intact as possible". Even today, you will find a variety of ethnic groups living in Serbia, including Croats, Slovenes and Muslims, so the "Hitler allusions" are just plain crap. Milosevic was not a racist -- the fight was over land and power -- not race or political persuasion. Milosevic was also NOT "the strategic aggressor" -- all of the various independence movements had been laying their groundwork for many years. I can recall back in the 1970's, NY airport being bombed by "Croat nationalists". My own Croat cousin was part of the more recent Croat indpendence movement, and he flat out told me that Germany was organizing it and backing it, which is precisely what Handke said. Milosevic may have been a bloody bastard in trying to keep the country together, but he didn't start these wars.
(Handke)Meeting with representatives of the Serbian Orthodox Church means nothing - the Serbian Orthdox Church was the most notorious and disgustingly obsequious collaborator with Communism of any of the national churches.
It really must hurt to be you.
The Serbian Orthodox Church suffered under communism just like every church in a communist country suffered under communism.
The NY Times covered the story of Bishop Sava of Shumadija in the mid-1980's who had had enough of the communists. The Yugoslav "Minister of Cults & Education" at the time, wouldn't allow "crosses on new churches to be visible from the road" and Bishop Sava declared the guy "persona non grata", openly challenging him and the communist system in Yugoslavia. We all held our breath as to what was going to happen to Bishop Sava next -- we thought that he would wind up dead or in prison. But, to everyone's surprise, the government backed down, for the first time in 40 years! I later met Bishop Sava in Los Angeles, when he became the Bishop Administrator for the Western Diocese of the SOC -- and he had no answers for why he did what he did, other than "sometimes you've had enough at the same time that God has had enough and you take a stand because it is what you must do for your own conscience".
Reality: Serbian troops - who themselves had no problem carrying out military operations on Easter and every other holiday in the Serbian Orthodox calendar, so quit whining about the US carrying out military operations on the same day - murdered easily hundreds and perhaps thousands of Kosovars including women and children.
I have no idea what you are talking about -- "thousands of Kosovars murdered on Easter"? The ICTY has only come up with less than 3,000 dead on all sides in Kosovo during a several year peiod and not "on Easter" -- and even the highest post-bombing estimates put the number on all sides dead at under 10,000! Who is the "propagandist" here, pal? You!
And what is "a Kosovar"? Or a "Bosniak"? Except a false ethnic identity created for propagandist purposes? None of the people in Yugoslavia ever referred to each other or themselves with these identifiers until they wanted countries of their own. All of a sudden, identifiers like "Boniak" made the Bosnian Muslims sound like the "real indigenous people" as opposed to those dirty "Serbians" who had actually inhabited the land, as Serbs, longer than the Muslims. Likewise, "Kosovar" -- instead of "Kosovo Albanian" to give Albanians a claim in Kosovo that they never had before. It's pure propaganda, and it is coming out of your mouth, not mine!
It is you, not me or us, who are the propagandist here -- whether this is out of pure ignorance on your part or of a deliberate campaign is anyone's guess.
You are a shameless propagandist, devoid of truth.
We get the idea that you don't much care for Milosevich.
Perhaps you can give us your assesment of his fellow Communists... Tudjman and Izbegovich.
Why not throw in your opinion of the
Croat Bosnian foreigner Ceku.
I note that this argument is advanced by the same people who (correctly) ridicule the notion that we should refrain from fighting an Islamic enemy during Ramadan.