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|Serbs are being
systematically exterminated in Kosovo
By: Mary Mostert
May 30, 2000
As usual, it was not even reported in the American media, but in the Serbian Press the picture showing dead bodies, including the body of a four year old Serbian child, being placed in body bags was titled: "Serbs are being systematically exterminated in Kosovo".
Is it just Serb melodrama, or is there, perhaps, a concern that the American media is just systematically ignoring during this election year? Would it be just too painful for Al Gore's candidacy to point out that exterminating Serbs is the major Foreign Policy legacy of the Clinton-Gore era?
As it turns out neither NATO nor the United Nations appears to be able to keep their Albanian allies from killing United Nations employees - if they happen to be Serbs. While I did not see the report anywhere else, the United Nations website reported United Nations Secretary Kofi Annan's message to the family members of a Serb UN staff member, Petar Topoljski, as "a dark day for Kosovo."
There have been no arrests, and even if there were, of course, there is no real judicial system in Kosovo, one year after the so-called KFOR victory over Slobodan Milosevic. If there were arrests, according to a report of a United Nations investigation headed by Ambassador Anwarul Karim Chowdhury of Bangladesh on the United Nations own website security in Kosovo is still a "major and continuing challenge." Even when arrested, killers are quickly freed by the KLA controlled "civil government" and judicial system of Kosovo. Ambassador Chowdhury said that some violent incidents during the mission made the group "comprehend better the reality of the situation."
One year into the United Nations and KFOR control over Kosovo the Ambassador noted that while the "international community had invested heavily in Kosovo and could not afford to fail" there was an urgent need to address "ongoing staff shortages for both civil administration and police" which "constrained UN operations." Introducing the mission's report, Ambassador Anwarul Karim Chowdhury of Bangladesh, said the Council "could not have envisaged" the enormity of the UN's tasks in Kosovo when it adopted resolution 1244 (1999), which sets out the tasks for the UN Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK).
The fact of the matter is that KFOR and UNMIK actually HAVE allowed the "systematic extermination" of Serbs in Kosovo. The number of Serbs in the area of Gnjilane has shrunk from 12,000 to 800 since the end of the war in June of 1999 according to the Security Council delegation's report. Gnjilane is under the auspices of the U.S. military, sent by Clinton without Congressional approval, and was immediately occupied by the US Marines after the bombing was halted. The movement of those few Serbs who remain is possible only with an escort of international peacekeepers or police, according to UNMIK.
What that indicates is that the situation is far worse now than when the bombing stopped. Last June I received an e-mail from a Marine stationed with the KFOR troops in the area of Gnjilane. The first e-mail reported that the Albanians were burning down the homes of the Serbs, who had fled when it became obvious to them that there would be no security for them.
His second e-mail reported:
Dear Mary, Took a security patrol out a couple of days ago. Didn't run across any bad guys. The little village we went through was interesting. Through an interpreter, I found out that it had been occupied by regular VJ (Yugolsavian) troops until a couple of weeks ago. The old man I spoke with said that the Serb troops didn't steal or destroy anything in the village and left everything as they had found it. Asked him about mines and he said that they removed all of them and took them with them when they left. Obviously very disciplined regular army troops.
The people in the village were ethnic Albanian but didn't seem to harbor a lot of resentment toward the Serbs, I suppose having the regular VJ in their village kept the MUP and paramilitary away. The old man ended up guiding us through the fields and trails in the area. (Good patrol tip, walk only where the locals walk.) He also went into his house and gave us some smoked sausage, tomatoes, bread, and peppers.
Very poor people, so this really meant a lot. We've had nothing but MREs for three weeks so the feast we had when we returned to our lines was the highlight of the day. Anyhow, this was just one small village and in no way can it be construed to represent what is going on or happened in the rest of the country. Just some simple farmers who would be glad just to be left alone to work the soil and live their lives.
Mostly old folks, women, and children. And the little ones just about broke my heart. They have a healthy fear of men with guns. Ain't a Marine here doesn't have a soft spot for the kids. This mess over here isn't their fault. It's a side of this hell hole that isn't glamorous enough to make the evening news.
So, what, do you suppose, caused these simple Albanian farmers who had no bad experiences with the Serb army, to drive out 99.4% of their Serb neighbors, AFTER the Americans arrived to protect them? And, why has the Clinton Administration not risen up in arms over this "genocide" of Serbs?
It was only one year ago that every Clinton spokesman was talking about stopping the "genocide" of Albanians. Undersecretary of State James Rubin said on CNN March 29, 1999, that the Serbs were " 'committing genocide' by driving Albanians out of their homes and telling them to leave the province, when there was a total of 77,000 Albanian refugees after 6 days of bombing. The Albanian population is said to have been 1,800,000 and the Serb population of Kosovo 200,000. However, at the borders on March 30, 1999, CNN reported a 'trickle' of refugees - guessing that the Albanians were "too terrified to leave their homes."
If 4% of the Ethnic Albanians leaving Kosovo during the first week of being bombed is "genocide" that needed to be stopped by 79 days of bombing and the expenditure of, to date, $21 billion of American Tax funds, what is the appropriate response of 99.4% of the Serbs being either killed or driven out of Gniljane while under American military occupation? Not surprisingly, the Serbs believe genocide is the goal of the Clinton administration.
That leaves us Americans with two choices: Either Clinton was lying about the Serbs committing genocide when 4% of the Albanians had fled the province in late March 1999 or he and the U.S. media are covering up a massive genocide against the Serbs who have either been killed or have fled Gniljane while it's been under American military "protection."
After that statement by James Rubin was made, when United Nations reported that 77,000 Albanians, 4% of the Ethnic Albanian population were refugees from Kosovo, that "genocide" was used to justify the continued bombing of Yugoslavia for an additional two and a half months.
Today, only 6% of the ethnic Serbs in American occupied Gnjilane remain, and the situation is not even MENTIONED on CNN.
So, using James Rubin's definition of "genocide" when a mere 4% of the ethnic Albanian population had fled Kosovo, the Serbs certainly are on solid semantic ground in accusing Bill Clinton of genocide against the Serbs when 96.4% of the ethnic Serb population has been driven out of the American protected section of Gnjilane.
Clinton has a unique legacy he can point to. He can rightfully claim to be the first American president, at least since Andrew Jackson did nothing while the Cherokees were driven en-masse out of Georgia, to preside over a genocide of a minority group.
Reprinted from Original Soruces, www.originalsources.com