Skip to comments.A Bean by any other Name is still a Bean / Kosovo inspires Bigotry
Posted on 03/05/2008 12:59:45 PM PST by Ravnagora
Mr. Steve Greenberg Republican candidate for the United States Congress 8th District, IL P.O. Box 894 Mundelein, IL 60060 March 5, 2008 Open Letter
RE: A Bean by any other Name is still a Bean.
Dear Mr. Greenberg,
There is so much wrong with your Press Release of February 27th, 2008 that each point deserves to be addressed, and perhaps thats a good thing for you, because that means you are getting the voters attention. I hope that this response to your press release gets some attention as well, for I intend to circulate it as widely as possible. The points you make in the release are indicative of a bigotry that has developed in the United States against a group of people that has never been anything but a loyal friend and ally of America.
In your release you attack your democratic rival for the congressional seat you are seeking by taking cheap shots at her nationality, specifically her Serbian nationality, by specifying her maiden name in your attack upon her. Yes, Mr. Greenberg, Melissa Luburich Bean is of Serbian descent, and perhaps this makes her especially qualified to try to motivate her peers in congress to seek a fair and just resolution for the problem of Kosovo. Too many of her peers, including those now running for the highest office in our land, have not sought a fair and just resolution. Instead, they have actually magnified the problem in the Balkans, a problem that wont just go away. Kosovo has indeed become an American problem, not just a Serbian/Albanian problem, so its understandable that you, as a political candidate running for office would be interested in how things play out there. What is not understandable is how you can pass judgment upon Congresswoman Bean when you are so clearly completely ignorant of the issues regarding the fate of Kosovo.
Im going to include the entire content of your press release below so that the readers of this letter will know exactly what Im referring to and they can refer to your own words in making their decisions about who they will vote for this year. This way, even if you do remove the press release from your website, the voters will have your words saved.
PRESS RELEASE ISSUED ON FEBRUARY 27, 2008 BY THE CAMPAIGN OF STEVE GREENBERG, CANDIDATE FOR CONGRESS, EIGHTH DISTRICT, ILLINOIS
Melissa Bean places the interests of radical foreign nations above Freedom and Democracy
Serbian Caucus Co-Chair continues support for anti-American fundamentalists and is getting paid for it.
LAKE ZURICH, IL 2/27/08 Eighth District Republican Nominee Steve Greenberg re-affirmed his support for the newly independent nation of Kosovo and called on Melissa Luburich Bean to follow his lead, by denouncing the Serbian violence against America and the people of Kosovo, withdrawing her sponsorship of controversial H. Res. 445 and by returning campaign donations from the anti-American Serbian Unity Conference.
The United States and eighteen other major world powers, including Great Britain, France, and Germany, have officially recognized Kosovo as a sovereign nation, but Melissa Luburich Bean stands against Kosovos freedom and independence. Last May Bean introduced H. Res. 445, which affirms Serbian control over Kosovo, by stating that since 1999 Serbia has had no political, military, or economic presence in its [emphasis added] province of Kosovo, and rejects future independence of Kosovo. Through her continued support of the resolution, Melissa Bean chooses to side with Serbian criminals who attacked America by breaking into and setting ablaze the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade last week while the Serbian government stood by and did nothing.
Beans support for anti-American Serbian fundamentalists runs even deeper; she has taken over $24,000 from members of the Serbian Unity Conference which strongly denounces Kosovos unilateral declaration of independence as well as Americas subsequent recognition of it. Bean even sent a letter to President George W. Bush urging him not to recognize Kosovo as an independent nation.
Melissa Bean chose to side with oppression and anti-American fundamentalists, instead of freedom and independence. Melissa Bean places the interests of radical foreign nations above the interests of freedom and democracy. She must denounce the Serbian violence against Americans at our embassy. She must stand on the side of freedom and withdraw her sponsorship of controversial H. Res. 445 which does not support the American policy of recognition for Kosovo. Finally she should return all money sent to her by the Serbian Unity Conference.
What follows is a brief response to the points you make. I dont anticipate that youll change your mind about any of this, but I wanted it out there for the benefit of the voters.
1. Anti-American Serbian fundamentalists This is a new one. Serbs have been called many things over the course of the last two decades but this is definitely original. You are confusing the Christian Serbs with the Islamist anti-American fundamentalists that truly do pose a genuine threat to America, unlike the Serbs who have never been anything but loyal and true friends of America. Are the Serbs angry at America right now? You bet. Are the Serbs disappointed with America? You bet. Are they justified in feeling the way that they do, both here and abroad? You bet. Do they intend to hurt America? No way. That has never been, nor will ever be, the Serbian way.
2. Melissa Luburich Bean Ironically, Mr. Greenberg, you issued your press release, very deliberately and calculatedly including Beans Serbian maiden name, on the very day that a huge controversy developed over the tactics used by the Tennessee Republican Party in their press release of February 25, 2008 smearing Barack Hussein Obama by taking cheap shots at his name and the clothing he was wearing on a trip to Africa in 2006. This controversy escalated to national proportions, condemnations were issued, pressure was levied, and the offensive press release was first altered then removed altogether from the Tennessee Republicans website. Thats why I wanted to make sure to include the entire content of your release in this letter. Just to make sure that its available in case the release disappears from your website.
3. Serbian violence against America and the people of Kosovo Serbian violence against either of these two entities has been nothing compared to American violence against the Serbs, which included a 78 day bombing campaign in 1999 to bully them into submission. Serbian violence against the people of Kosovo? Serbs were and remain the people of Kosovo. If you are referring to the Albanian people of Kosovo, you need to take a closer look at the tactics of independence-minded, so called freedom fighters such as the Kosovo Liberation Army, not just in their campaign of terror against the Serbian civilians in Kosovo but against their own Albanian Kosovars who did not wish to go along with the separatist independence program.
4. Controversial H. Res. 445 This resolution, sponsored by Congresswoman Melissa Bean and Congressman Dan Burton, both co-chairs of the Serbian Caucus, is the only fair and just resolution set forth with regards to Serbia and Kosovo and the interests of all parties involved. The proposals put forth in this resolution were thoughtful, prudent, mature, wise, and fair to ALL parties. This resolution called for a mutually agreed upon solution for the future status of Kosovo and rejected an imposed solution for Kosovos independence status. How any reasonable person can take offense to this proposal as you have is beyond my comprehension, but given your repeated diatribes in your press release, it doesnt surprise me.
Two other resolutions, that Im sure you would agree with wholeheartedly, had no provisions for fairness and justice. Senate Resolution 135, sponsored by Senators Lieberman, Biden, McCain, and Smith, introduced in March of 2007, and House Resolution 309 of April 2007 sponsored by Congressman Engel and Mark Steven Kirk, who is currently running for congress in Illinois Tenth District, both unequivocally support independence for Kosovo, thus clearly favoring the Albanian separatists, many of whom can safely be regarded as terrorist elements in the Balkans.
5. Returning campaign donations from the anti-American Serbian Unity Conference I may be wrong, but I dont think there is such a thing as Serbian Unity Conference. There is, however, an organization called the Serbian Unity Congress and they have been very active in working with American politicians and policy makers to come to fair and just resolutions of the many problems that have developed in the former Yugoslavia. They also monitor what the politicians and policy makers are doing with regards to foreign policy and do what they can to educate those who truly have no understanding of issues specific to the Balkans but who are implementing misguided and potentially dangerous policies anyway. Never have they been anti-American. They are anti-ignorance.
You, Mr. Greenberg, are taking umbrage at Melissa Bean receiving campaign donations in the amount of $24,000 and you are demanding that she return it to this organization? Have you ever done an audit of what politicians Lieberman, McCain and others have received from the Albanian lobby? I can assure you that it is considerably more than $24,000 and I can assure you that the Albanian lobby is not overwhelmingly concerned with American interests.
Congresswoman Melissa Bean is not just taking the donated money and running with it, like other politicians have done. She is not just taking money from Serbs then forgetting and conveniently ignoring the fact that she is of Serbian descent when it comes to representing Serbian American interests. With attacks such as yours on nationality and heritage, its almost understandable that politicians of Serbian descent would choose to keep their identity hidden. This is what makes me proud of Melissa Bean. She is not ashamed of her heritage. And she is not afraid to publicly do what is right.
She is against America supporting the imposed independence of Kosovo not because she is Serbian, but because its a bad, misguided foreign policy decision. There are others, such as former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger and former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton who are against America supporting Kosovos independence. Its just a hunch, but its likely they dont have a drop of Serbian blood in them. There are other learned people, non-Serbs, who have vehemently decried Americas decision to support Kosovo independence. On what basis would you be attacking them since you would not be able to take cheap shots at their name or their heritage or their nationality?
Melissa Beans spokesman responded to your attacks appropriately by stating that the Congresswoman does not respond to ethnically and religiously divisive statements. She didnt engage you, Mr. Greenberg. Im proud of her for that as well.
6. Melissa Bean chooses to side with Serbian criminals who attacked America while the Serbian government stood by and did nothing The Serbs who attacked the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade after America officially recognized Kosovo as a sovereign nation in February were only a small portion of the Serbs who took to the streets peacefully to protest. The peaceful protestors did not get the media attention, however, because that would not fit the medias agenda of presenting Serbs in the most negative light possible as uncivilized, brutal people. The attackers were deemed thugs by their own people and the Serbian authorities have indeed gone after the criminals and have proceeded appropriately.
There may come a time, Mr. Greenberg, when different factions in the United States decide they want to secede from America (and, indeed, it has happened before with incredibly destructive, bloody consequences), and if that does happen, Im sure that the American people will respond passionately, just as the Serbian people did in Serbia.
7. The interests of radical foreign nations above the interests of freedom and democracy -- Serbia, Mr. Greenberg, is not the radical foreign nation you need to be worried about. Kosovo, now a brand new nation, is the radical foreign nation you need to be worried about. Let us watch just how much freedom and democracy the new Kosovar leaders are going to allow their newly independent people to enjoy.
My father became a citizen of the United States of America in 1955. He voted for the first time in the general elections of 1956. His first vote ever was for republican candidate General Dwight D. Eisenhower. He has voted republican ever since. My mother has been a staunch republican all of her adult life as well. Both are Serbian. Both are Americans. Only on rare occasions and with great difficulty have they voted for anyone but the republican candidates over the years. If you were to take a census of the Serbs in the United States you would probably discover that the majority of them have and do vote republican. In the most recent primaries my father had no problem voting for you. That was before your Press Release of February 27th, 2008. He has since experienced a change of heart and his final vote will reflect that.
Unfortunately, for the Serbian citizens of the United States, no party is the lesser of two evils anymore. Both democratic and republican politicians and policymakers have made grievous mistakes in alienating the Serbian constituency. Considering how important a few votes can be in determining the outcome of a political race, the couple of million Serbs living in this country could very well make a difference. They dont have the political power or voice that other ethnic groups have in America, but I think it will turn out that American policymakers should have heeded Serbian warnings and advice about how to proceed in the Balkans. I think, too, that of all the ethnic groups from the former Yugoslavia, it is the Serbs who have been the most loyal to America. Unfortunately that loyalty has not counted for much. But Serbian votes do count, and thats something you need to think about.
One other thing you need to consider, especially if you do succeed in winning the election, is money -- American money that will be going to the Kosovars to sustain the new nation that America so quickly and easily recognized. Right now its being estimated that Kosovo will need $2 billion in foreign aid over the course of the next few years to sustain it. Thats just an estimate. We all know how that goes. Whatever you think its going to cost, itll end up costing more. Although its being recommended by senior U.S. officials that Europe fund half that amount with the balance to be funded by the U.S. and various financial institutions, as an American tax-payer this concerns me. Its one thing to accept my tax dollars being used to fund American issues. Its another thing entirely to part with my money so that Kosovo can be sustained, especially considering that Im not keen on funding a newly established Islamist state. Ill let you ponder the words of Assistant U.S. Secretary of State Dan Fried as he testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on March 4th.
"'We cannot simply assume that Kosovo is on autopilot and walk away. This is going to take high-level sustained attention through the end of this administration and into the next.'
"Fried stressed the $2 billion was a "crude estimate." To help make Kosovo economically viable, the United States will participate in a major donors' conference on Kosovo in June, he said. He said Congress had already appropriated $350 million in aid for Kosovo."
Source: Susan Cornwell, Reuters
You are uninformed about Kosovo. You are misguided, to say the least, in your condemnation of Serbia, the Serbs, and your political opponent in the Eighth District of Illinois, Congresswoman Melissa Luburich Bean. Your press release was ignorant and your tactics cheap. She has risen above your attacks and has not dignified your bigotry with a response. I, however, feel that your bigotry deserved a response. I hope you will not dismiss this letter on the basis that I have a Serbian name. I love my name. Im proud of it. Im proud of my heritage. Im proud of my parents and of my extended Serbian family, both those who never came to America and those who did, becoming law-abiding, English speaking, hard working people of integrity with a deeply felt loyalty to their new home. It is from my Serbian parents that I learned to appreciate just how great this country America was, and still is, no matter what.
We are patriots, Mr. Greenberg. And so is Melissa Bean. She is exercising her right and her obligation to do what is fair and right and just. She had the courage to put herself on the line, despite the attacks that she knew would come from people like you.
When the consequences of the U.S. Kosovo policy play out, we will see who was right and who was wrong. By then, it will be too late for any retractions.
Aleksandra Rebic An American Serb.
Great response to this apparent bigot DNC candidate
I cannot understand why politicans pander to Kosovo Muslims...esp someone like John McCain who claims to be “tough of national security”.
Great reply, the guy was out of line with that press release and hopefully he will lose in November.
Send treats to the troops...
Great because you did it!
Anyone can "claim" anything they want. The only group I have seen McCain "tough" on is American Conservatives. He's soft on enemy combatants, illegal alien invaders, former communist enemies, liberal Democrats and Muslims in general.
He's a "tough guy" only in his own mind.
I would love to see him say something to Jackson Jr. in the 2nd district about being Afrocentric for spearheading causes that only benefit black folks. Tell him to return all his money he gets from Operation Push Steve!
Nope, Serbs for the last 20 years have a special place in politics that no other nationality has seen aside from maybe African-Americans for the past 200.
I don’t care for Bean, but I have heard enough crap about Serbian people that it sickens me. While Steve was flipping his hockey puck into a net he probably never even heard of Serbia. But thank God for wealthy parents to give you a future when you can’t play hockey anymore.
Steve clearly doesn’t understand the way government works. He also doesn’t understand the illegality of an independent Kosovo. He also doesn’t understand that his comments have only emboldened the Islamic Jihadists who he thinks are champions of democracy.
Next thing he will tell us is that it was Serbs that flew the planes into the towers.
Office #: 847-726-0808
P.O. Box 894, Mundelein, Illinois 60060
I didn’t vote for this guy in the primary
The bottom line is Mr. Steve Greenberg Republican supports the KLA which was officially designated a terrorist organization by the State Dept. in 1998.
I have not seen one blog, message board or editorial, supporting Greenberg in this, but many slamming him for it.
First BJ Clinton & NATO bomb them, then BUSH & UN steal their land.....What did tiny Serbia ever do to the US to deserve this?????????
A proud Serbian American or if that bothers you......ts/.......an American of Serbian ancestry....and proud of it
He calls himself a business man but what did he really do in daddy's business?
When he was on his “own” he was CEO of Goliath Falls.com from 1999 to 2001 and instead of calling it what is was he said, “They just stopped operating”.
He and his siblings had a turn around business where they sought businesses that seemed viable and implemented changes that would improve their viability and outlook for grow and success. This hasn't been going very well. The details you can find I'm sure.
He has never been on his own as a businessman so he can't market himself as a self made success story. He has always operated with the help of his family. Now, the family part isn't what I have a problem with, it's the crap about being self made that gets me.
Also, he doesn't want to speak about nor take credit for the botched IKG deal. I wonder if he can talk about how much the creditors lost in IKG. Success? Self made?
I'm sick and tired of idiots running for Republican seats and that includes McCain who finished damn near last in his class, Dad helped to just get him a passing grade, to this moron who couldn't even finish community college.
We passed up Romney who was a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School and a very intelligent business man.
It's all upside down and republicans deserve to loose more seats.
This Serbophobe bigot still has that cracked news release on his website, and he’s still defending it. He just doesn’t learn. What a dumb-dumb!!!!
There may be enough Orthodox Christians in his district (along with just plain outraged people) to give him the election drubbing he deserves. And wouldn’t it be neat if this whole thing results in lots of sympathy for Serbs and Serbia all over the country!!!!
Greenberg’s attack is having unintended consequences. What I’m seeing is that this is galvanizing support for Melissa Bean and will inevitably have a positive effect on her campaign.
Greenberg’s attack is bigoted and bigotry tends to inspire passionate reactions. I’m proud of Congresswoman Bean for not backing down. It takes a lot of guts to be in public office and actually be sympathetic to the Serbian cause. I’m surprised that Greenberg didn’t label her a “Nazi sympathizer”.
By the way, it’s wonderful to see the responses here in “Free Republic”. People here actually seem to be educated about the issues and it’s to the great credit of the moderators that they allow a “different” (and thus more fair and just) perspective on the whole “Serbian thing” to see the light of day. Thanks.
One some of the anti-FR websites, the big buzz is that Freepers want to attack Sertbia because of what happened to the American Embassy in Belgrade. I don’t know how these people could miss the pro-Serbian threads on FR, which are pretty well-known. So these people are dumb-dumbs, too, just lke Greenberg.
By the way, Ravnagora, you have a GREAT screen-name!!
A national PAC is needed to slam those anti-Christian and Anti- Serbian candidates, who are still believing the Clinton wag the dog stuff.
It looks like the palis are about to pull another kosovo deal. I cannot believe how this administration has made so many disastrous moves.