The Bulletin of what?

By Lester Schonbrun (posted 5-3-00)


In "Smart Bombs, Dumb Targeting," featured in this month's "Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists," Bill Arkin criticizes some of the decisions made by NATO during the war against Yugoslavia but can't contain his enthusiasm for the potential benefits of precision bombing. He says:

"... in most cases, the level of accuracy is so much greater today than ever before that a "miss" hardly ever means that civilians will be harmed."

And, with pride, he says:

"Out of 10,000 strikes there were 90 incidents in which civilians were killed because of technical failures, or because they were too close to military targets, or because of errors in judgment by pilots or targeters."

Only 90 World Trade Centers. Only a few Murrah Buildings. Only 500 humans like Polly Klaas, if we believe Mr. Arkin's figures. (The list of those actually killed has four times as many names.)


"Like so many other targets that would be attacked in the ensuing 78 days, the Pancevo plant was expertly hit." ...

"Allied Force was fought with the utmost concern for civilian casualties and damage." ...

"Enormous efforts were made, largely successful, to avoid short and long-term civilian casualties. When mistakes or complaints did occur in the 78 days of bombing, changes were implemented and many unpublicized restrictions were levied." ...

" ... if NATO had taken greater risks in Yugoslavia - hitting harder and faster - it might have shortened the war while not putting the citizens of Yugoslavia at greater risk."

From all this it's clear that Arkin didn't have any relatives among the killed or injured or any other lens to help him see Yugoslavs as human beings.

Also, Arkin's almost autistic obsession with accuracy in bombing doesn't extend to his writing. He says at one point: 


"This piece is not about the nature of the Yugoslav regime or the war's various political purposes ..."

But later, as part of his summary, he tells us:

"When air power is used - as it was in Yugoslavia - to halt a humanitarian disaster, ..."

That's NATO's handout, not the truth. There is no such thing as humanitarian bombing, or humanitarian war. To say it of a one-sided war which is prosecuted and propagandized by the US, UK, Turkey, et al, surpasses Orwell.

The "Bulletin of Atomic Scientists" should avoid tracts like Arkin's, lest it become known as the "Bulletin of Atomic Sociopaths."

If you find useful, we can use your help...

All our expenses are covered by individual donations. Right now we are behind on phone bills (we use the phone for interviews and editorial meetings) and for Lexis, the wonderful Internet tool that we use to research articles. Any donation will help with these expenses and for special projects like 'JUDGMENT', the new film we just produced.

You can Order Judgment now!

This movie shows precisely how images were created to demonize the Bosnian Serbs. Remember the 'emaciated man behind barbed wire'? Would you like to know the real story?

We suggest a $25 donation for this video inside the US or $26 outside the US, including shipping - but if you send a donation of any amount and request the video we'll send it. We want everyone to see the truth.

To order JUDGMENT send your donation to:

Emperor's Clothes
P.O. Box 610-321
Newton, MA 02461-0321
Or call (617) 916-1705