Real Reasons for Bombing Yugoslavia


Jan Slakov

------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
From:          "Janet M. Eaton" <•••@••.•••>
To:            •••@••.•••
Date:          Sat, 24 Apr 1999 16:21:17 +0000
Subject:       Real Reasons We Are Bombing Yugoslavia -Argus Cour

Dear MAI-nots:

Adreas Rockstein, MAI -not leader from Germany,  told me 
recently  that Maria Mies, well -known German ecofeminist whom he 
referred to as  one of the most engaged activists against MAI 
and globalization in Europe - will  speak at the time of the G7 on 
the subject: " From the licence to loot (MAI) to the "licence to 
kill" --  He felt this was a very good and important approach for 

This  article which examines the geopolitical, ideological and 
global economic roots of the crisis in Yugoslavia in more detail than 
most helps to illuminate the links  between the MAI, economic 
globalizaton and this War !!

All the best, 


Guest editorial by Chuck Sher, Argus Courier, Petaluma, CA

The current bombing of yet another sovereign country by U.S.-led forces is
being justified on humanitarian grounds-U.S. leaders claim that we must
stop the Serbs from a policy of ethnic cleansing and even genocide. But
before you accept our government's claim at face value, let's take a look
at U.S. actions, or inaction, and see what they reveal.

If humanitarian concern was the real motivation for U.S. actions then why
is our government not bombing Turkey for the brutal repression of their
Kurdish population? Is it because Turkey is useful to the U.S. as an ally?
Why is our government supplying arms to the Columbian government so they
can commit thousands of politically motivated murders every year? As Noam
Chomsky writes, "Columbia and Turkey explain their (U.S. supported)
atrocities on grounds that they are defending their countries from the
threat of terrorist guerrillas. As does the government of Yugoslavia."

All sides in the Yugoslav civil wars (not just the Serbs) have committed
atrocities. But can we believe reports of massacres of Kosovars (used as
the rationale for intervention by the U.S. but disputed by Le Monde and Le
Figaro, among other European newspapers) when they come from the lips of
NATO inspector William Walker, who was Ollie North's underling and then
U.S. ambassador to El Salvador during the late 1980s and who did nothing
while U.S.-trained death squads terrorized that country?

Why does our government not protest as Palestinians are slowly but surely
squeezed out of Arab East Jerusalem and other parts of the West Bank, in
direct violation of the Geneva Conventions which forbids an occupying power
from importing its own population into territories captured in an armed
conflict? Why does the U.S. not support the East Timorese in their struggle
to free themselves from a genocidal Indonesian occupation of their country?
And on and on. In each of these cases, the U.S. finds it useful to its
geopolitical aims to let human rights abuses go unnoticed.

Going back in history, we find that the U.S. record is clear-it bombs or
invades any country it feels like, supports the worst Third World
dictators, and then claims "humanitarian" motives as a fig leaf to cover
our government's real motivations-to ever-increase the power of U.S.
financial or geopolitical interests around the world. From the illegal and
useless bombing of Sudan and Afghanistan; to the deaths of over a million
innocent Iraqi civilians in the last eight years due to malnutrition and
water-borne diseases (caused by U.S.-led sanctions); to the invasion of
Panama, a sovereign nation, causing thousands of civilian deaths in direct
violation of international law; to the murder of hundreds of thousands of
peasants in Guatemala and El Salvador by their military forces, supported
and trained by our government; to a real "scorched earth" policy which
killed three million Vietnamese during the Vietnam War; to the original
"ethnic cleansing" of Native Americans from their ancestral lands here-the
U.S. has no moral authority to point a finger at anyone.

Once you have eliminated humanitarian concerns as the motive for the U.S.
bombing in Yugoslavia it becomes easier to find the real reasons. First,
the U.S. has decided that NATO is a more pliant military tool than the
U.N., Kosovo being a case in point-the U.N. would never have authorized an
armed attack on Serbia but NATO would and did, at the U.S. government's
request. This is a direct violation of international law and the U.N.
charter, as well as NATO's own charter which stipulates that NATO is to be
a purely defensive alliance. But being the world's only superpower means
you never have to say you are sorry, or justify your actions according to
the rule of law.

Second, there are potentially trillions of dollars of oil in the Caspian
Sea region which Western corporations want to control. Instead of a
pipeline going through Iran or Russia, the U.S. plan is to build a pipeline
through the Balkans and in order to do that we need compliant regimes who
will do what they are told.

Thirdly, U.S. policy in the Balkans, as elsewhere, is motivated by the
Pentagon's need to have some rationale for spending almost $300 billion
dollars every year so that it can be the unelected policeman of the world,
on behalf of U.S. corporate interests. Is this where you want your
hard-earned tax dollars to go?

Finally, Yugoslavia was a relatively successful socialist country under
Tito and therefore a threat to the ideological hegemony of the U.S.
Starting in the 1989, the IMF and the World Bank (both controlled by U.S.
financial interests), forced Yugoslavia to largely dismantle their public
sector. This, along with U.S.-sponsored economic sanctions, has resulted in
the disintegration of much of the Yugoslav economy, their GNP falling by as
much as 50% from 1990 to 1993. This in turn has led to extreme poverty,
mass unemployment and the flaring up of ethnic tensions which had been
under control since World War II.

In fact, this has been the U.S. plan since the fall of the Soviet Union in
1989. At that point it became clear to U.S. geopolitical planners that the
Yugoslav government (unlike the other Eastern European "socialist"
governments imposed by force after WWII) was not going to voluntarily give
up the gains they had made under the 45 years of Marshall Tito's
independent socialist government. Therefore it had to be forcibly
dismantled so that big business interests could have complete and
unfettered access to all of the region. In the Foreign Appropriations Bill
of 1990  the U.S. Congress,without warning or justification, stated that
all aid, credits or loans from the U.S., the IMF and World Bank to
Yugoslavia would be cut off in six months.

Also demanded in this bill was separate elections in each of the six
Yugoslav republics, including U.S. State Dept. approval of election
procedures and results, before aid to the separate republics would be
resumed. Six months later, to the day, the current period of civil war
began, starting with the secession of Croatia and Slovenia, then the ethnic
cleansing of hundreds of thousands of Serbs out of Croatia (with U.S. aid
and approval and without a murmur of protest from U.S. media) and the civil
war in Bosnia, in which the U.S. found it convenient (but totally biased)
to demonize the Serbs, as they are again being demonized in Kosovo. Thus
much of the blame for the suffering leading up to the present situation in
Kosovo can be put squarely at the door of the U.S government and the
corporate interests who are its real policy-makers

Americans are not a heartless people but we have been trained to accept our
government's stated positions (endlessly repeated in the mainstream media)
as being the gospel truth. But you don't have to be one of the sheep. Find
other sources of information about the realities behind the official
"news". Read Noam Chomsky, Michael Parenti, Z Magazine and The Nation and
listen toPacifica radio stations if you have one in your area. For in-depth
information on Kosovo, check out ZNet on the Internet at and
Ramsey Clark's International Action Center at, two
marvelous resources for alternative articles on many subjects. You owe it
to your fellow man to find out the truth of what your tax dollars are doing
in Yugoslavia and around the world.

Chuck Sher is a small-business owner and political activist in Petaluma, CA

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