Peace – Fisk, June 4 & NATO’s role


Jan Slakov

From: "Janet M. Eaton" <•••@••.•••>
Date: Fri, 4 Jun 1999 10:29:42 +0000
Subject: Peace - Serbs ask why not 72 days ago??  Fiske June 4 

------- Forwarded Message Follows -------
Date:          Fri, 4 Jun 1999 05:33:21 -0700 (PDT)
From:          MichaelP <•••@••.•••>
To:            unlikely.suspects:;
Subject:       FISK on the peace agreement

INDEPENDENT (London) June 4

War in the Balkans - 72 days. 1,500 dead. Serbs ask why

Robert Fisk in Belgrade

"SO WHY couldn't he have signed this 72 days ago?" Jelena asked. "Why did
we have to have 1,500 of our people killed by Nato and our country
destroyed before our President agreed to this peace?" As we sat outside
the Knez restaurant in the muggy early summer afternoon, there was a crack
of sound as a Nato jet broke the sound barrier high over Belgrade, as if
Jelena needed to be reminded of her humiliation.

For if Kosovo's future is now being decided in Washington, London,
Brussels and Moscow, what of the rest of Serbia with its shattered
factories and epic post-war unemployment, its broken roads and pulverised
bridges and bombed-out power stations and refineries and railways? And
what of those cemeteries of civilian dead and the constant reminder to
Yugoslavia's people - those official graves with their red, white and blue
banners - of the price their soldiers paid for opposing Nato? What did
they die for?

There will be those here who will ask this question many times in the
coming weeks and months. They will want the answer from President
Milosevic. The mothers and fathers of the thousands of Serb wounded will
want an answer to the same question. And not just the parents. The
soldiers too will have their questions, just as the nationalists did in
the Serb parliament yesterday, shouting their defiance at the
"capitulation" - the word used by a Vojvodina MP - to Nato. They voted in
favour of peace by 168 to 82 but almost came to blows in the closed
parliamentary chamber, out of which stormed that most ferocious of
nationalists, Vojeslav Seselj.

True, the Serbs held out under weeks of bombing by the most powerful force
on earth. And their defiance will become the stuff of Serb mythology in
centuries to come, alongside the 14th-century battle of Kosovo Polje,
another epic defeat for the Serb nation.

But what of the immediate future of Kosovo? Turned into a wasteland by two
and a half months of pillage and bombs, its electricity and water supply
destroyed, its communications torn up, its villages and towns burnt, its
fields contaminated with the dust of depleted uranium shells, what
possible home can the refugees return to? And what possible protection can
the Serbs of Kosovo expect in that critical moment between the departure
of the Yugoslav forces and the arrival of Nato and Russian armies? Already
they fear the coming days. Retribution is the word that springs to mind.
For the Kosovo Liberation Army is going to emerge from the hills and
forests of Kosovo in the next few days with an agenda quite different to
that of Nato, let alone Serbia.

Indeed, nothing is ever as it seems in Yugoslavia. And even Jelena's
cynicism at the Knez restaurant yesterday was slightly misplaced.
According to the text of the Kosovo peace agreement available in Belgrade,
Slobodan Milosevic has succeeded in erasing a key element of the Paris
peace agreement: a referendum on the future of the province in three
years' time that might have allowed Kosovo Albanians to demand
independence. And one of Mr Milosevic's ministers was quick to seize on
another apparent departure from the March accord: the disappearance of an
annex to the Paris agreement, which would have allowed Nato troops free
access to all of Yugoslavia. Nato, it appears, will have to move in out of
Kosovo only through the narrow roads of Macedonia and Albania.

And a close scrutiny of the text suggests that if Serbia has been
humiliated - its army and police in Kosovo reduced to a mere skeleton, the
province controlled by an army of foreigners - Belgrade's guerrilla
enemies in the KLA will face emasculation.

"Demilitarised" by Nato, the KLA's declared intention of achieving
independence will be opposed by its Western protectors. And if Serbia's
MPs are to be believed, Yugoslavia's frontiers are now regarded as
"inviolable" by the Nato powers. So much for Kosovo's independence. Will
the KLA accept this - or will it turn against Nato?

In Belgrade, this all seems academic. The papers here have been advising
readers how to keep warm this coming winter in a Serbia that will have no
infrastructure and few functioning power stations. Burn trees from the
forests and old floorboards, they are told, store water in a land whose
water pumping stations have stopped working. They've even asked the tram
and trolley-bus crews to reduce their schedules to save electricity.

But war invisibly wounds the living, too. Take the lady who cleans my
hotel room each morning. Both her sons are at the front in Kosovo and she
has been weeping every day in fear for their safety. Now she need weep no
more. But last weekend, one of them came home on two days' leave. "He had
changed," she said. "I don't know what had happened to him. But he was no
longer like my son. I cry now because he is a different boy."

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Date:   Fri, 4 Jun 1999 08:14:16 -0400
From: Eric Fawcett <•••@••.•••>
Subject: sfp-94: Obeisance to NATO wrecks Canada's role in N-disarmament

!!!Day 80 in the Illegal and thus Criminal NATO War against Yugoslavia!!!

3 June 1999  David Morgan   Vancouver

Canada's role in Nuclear-Disarmament has been very seriously set back, if
not destroyed, by our membership in NATO.

This has happened in two important stages:

1.  NATO Expansion: This was eagerly supported by the Canadian
   government with Lloyd Axworthy even calling for the Ukraine
   to be a NATO member. This expansion seriously eroded Russian
   confidence in the West and slowed down their N-disarmament

2. NATO Bombing of Yugoslavia: Canada's involvement in this
   has been a disaster at many levels, including our role in
   N-disarmament. Predictably, the Russians viewed this bombing
   as if it were on their own territory. The Russians now openly
   talk of increasing their N-armaments. Start II is dead. The 
   Ukraine, one of the few countries that has got rid of all 
   N-weapons, now calls for N-rearming. Canada's former respected 
   role as a peacekeeper and honest broker is damaged or destroyed.

Look where our membership in NATO under Prime Minister Chretien's
government has taken us:

For 70 days Canada has been involved in the bombing of Yugoslavia and 
has taken part in the 30,000 NATO sorties flown and co-operated in or
participated in:
- The killing of 1,200 civilians (one third of them children),  
- Bombing of refugee columns & crowded market places
- The destruction of 11 rail bridges & 34 road bridges
- The destruction of hospitals, schools, apartment buildings,
  houses and TV stations
- The destruction of power stations, transmission systems,
  oil refineries, oil storage, chemical plants, factories.
- - The widespread us of cluster bombs & missiles tipped with
  depleted uranium.

all of this, outside international law and in defiance of the
Charter of the United Nations and also NATO's own founding document.

Quite rightly, a request has been made by law professors at Osgoode Hall
Law School, York University, Toronto, to Justice Louise Arbour, prosecutor
at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, at The
Hague, to investigate, many NATO country political leaders, including
Canada's Prime Minister Jean Chretien, Minister of Foreign Affairs LLoyd
Axworthy and Defense Minister Art Eggleton, concerning serious violations
of international law and to prepare indictments against them.

Canadians should ask these ministers to resign while the Criminal Tribunal
investigates these very serious charges. The damage that they have done to
the cause of N-disarmament, which in the long term may well prove to be
far more serious than the murderous attacks that they have launched
against Yugoslavia, is an even stronger reason for Canadians to call for
their resignations. 

Canadians should also demand Canada's speedy exit from NATO.

 David Morgan, 
 National President, Veterans Against Nuclear Arms (VANA)  
 Member of the Advisory Council of Science for Peace