ruth in Media Global Watch Bulletins

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TiM GW Bulletin 2000/1-3

Jan. 8, 2000

NATO's Bombing of the Grdelica Train

Gen. Clark Misled the World

NATO Has No Intention of Honoring Kosovo Armistice Agreement; Also, See The Pentagon Press Briefing Transcript...


Also, check out: "Toward a New Multipolar World of the 21st Century"

Clark's Grdelica Train "Mistake"

train4-4-12.jpg (21558 bytes)  train3-4-12.jpg (42727 bytes)

April 12, 1999

(for additional photos click here)


Frankfurt                      1. NATO's Gen. Clark Misled the World about

                                        Grdelica Train Bombing

Brussels                        2. NATO Has No Intention of Honoring

                                          Kosovo Armistice Agreement

Washington                  3. The Pentagon Press Briefing TranscriptText Box:  
Stela Jovanovic

Nis                                4. Widow of Grdelica Train Victim Speaks Out        

                                          new-feat.gif (906 bytes) Jan. 8, 2000


1. NATO's Gen. Clark Misled the World about Grdelica Train Bombing

FRANKFURT, Jan. 6 – A videotape shown by NATO to explain the killing of at least 14 civilians aboard a train on a bridge in Serbia last April was shown at triple its real speed, the German daily Frankfurter Rundschau reports in its Thursday, Jan. 6 edition.

The alliance had sought to excuse the killing of the civilians by saying the train had been traveling too fast for the trajectory of the missiles to have been changed in time.

NATO warplanes fired two missiles at the 50 metre (yard)-long bridge over the Juzna Morava River at Grdelica Klisura, some 300 kilometers (180 miles) south of Belgrade on April 12 during its campaign to force Belgrade's troops to leave Kosovo.

NATO's supreme commander in Europe, US General Wesley Clark shortly afterwards showed two videotapes of the train appearing to be traveling fast on the bridge, and said it had then been impossible to alter the missiles' trajectories.

The Frankfurt newspaper said the two videotapes were both shown at three times normal speed.

A spokesman for NATO'S military command in Mons, Belgium, acknowledged in a telephone interview with the Agence France Presse that those images had been altered by "a technical problem."


TiM Ed. A "technical problem?"   In plain English, such a technicality is called - LYING. And DENYING the truth.  Which is why we contemporaneously (!) called the NATO/Pentagon spokespeople the "lie and deny" PR news spinners (see ).  We knew that the filth would ultimately ooze out.  Sooner, rather than later, thanks to the Internet.  Just as in the case of Clark's boss and sponsor – Bill Clinton – who once said "I did not have sex with that woman" (Lewinsky).

Yeah, right.  And the sun will rise in the west.


The Grdelica bridge train footage, recorded by a camera installed in the warhead of one of the missiles that destroyed the bridge and train, was altered during the process of being copied for screening, said the NATO spokesman.

He said NATO was aware of the problem since last October but did not consider it "useful" to disclose it. "We did not deem it useful to go public with this information after we noticed it," the Frankfurt newspaper quoted a US air force spokesman in Europe as saying.


TiM Ed. "Useful?" Of course, not.   Not if you're in the "lie and deny" business.  Since when is telling the truth "useful" to war criminals? (also check out  the "Clinton General", S99-119, "Peace" 13, Item 1, July 4, among some other TiM pieces about Gen. Clark's rise and fall from power).


The Frankfurt newspaper also said the US Air Force, which carried out the bombardment, had not noticed for some months that the tape had been speeded up, and also attributed it to a technological error.


TiM Ed.: Well, judge this NATO/Pentagon "BS" for yourself, from a Jan. 6 Pentagon press conference excerpt, which we enclose at the end of this Bulletin. 

Whoever the USAF pilots were that carried out this heinous strike against Serb and other civilians deserve the same fate as that of the German war criminals who were hanged also for "only following orders."  

But not before those who gave the orders to bomb Serbia, such as "Adolf Clinton," "Madam Halfbright," William Cohen, Wesley Kanne Clark, Sam Berger, or others now engaged in a cover-up of their mass murder, get to have God's justice served to them first.

For additional personal gut-wrenching   stories concerning this particular NATO strike, check out the TiM editor's lectures, such as -


2. NATO Has No Intention of Honoring Kosovo Armistice Agreement

PHOENIX, Jan. 7 - Russia and Yugoslavia will pose new challenges to NATO's authority in Kosovo by mid-summer if the Western military alliance doesn't permit Yugoslav soldiers back into the enclave as mandated by U.N. terms that ended the conflict there last summer, the WorldNetDaily's Jon E. Dougherty reported on Jan. 7, the Orthodox Christian Christmas Day..

"At issue is whether NATO is prepared to honor Annex 2 of U.N. Security Council Resolution 1244, signed June 15, 1999, which states Yugoslavia was to be permitted to send a small, lightly armed contingent of soldiers to Kosovo to guard cultural sites, the country's territorial borders, and to help clear landmines by June 2000," the WND report said.

However, U.S. Gen. Wesley Clark, supreme commander of NATO forces in Europe, says that the alliance is not prepared to honor the agreement.


TiM Ed.: Let's freeze this frame for a moment… The "Clinton General," NATO's "Supreme Being," as some of his subordinates have derisively referred to Clark, said it's okay to go back on one's word of honor. No surprise there, given that men like Clinton or Clark have no honor…(especially in light of the preceding Grdelica train/bridge story).


"The Yugoslav Army will not be authorized to return to Kosovo," Clark told the Montenegrin daily newspaper Monitor. "If by chance it tries, it will be prevented."

Ominously, Clark's statement came on the heels of statements made by a number of Yugoslav and Russian officials indicating they intend to hold NATO and the U.N. to their word.

In mid-December, Gen. Nebojsa Pavkovic, commander of Yugoslavia's Third Army, restated an earlier prediction, made shortly after NATO forces ended its 1999 bombing campaign, that he intended to lead Serb troops back to Kosovo by June 2000 (S99-142, KFOR "Peacefarce" 36).

In addition, Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic, said in an interview with  Politika Magazine last month that NATO's current occupation of Kosovo was "temporary," and that "nobody can take [Kosovo] away from us" (also see Serb General Tells KFRO to Leave Kosovo - S99-142, KFOR "Peacefarce" 36, Item 1, Aug. 29 and TiM's "Tour de Serbia", the Nis Stage, when the TiM editor met with Gen. Pavkovic).

Complicating the situation is Russia's renewed involvement in Yugoslavia, which began to shift Dec. 22, four days after elections in the Russian Duma. Those elections saw significant victories for nationalists who support new hard line policies directed against the West and enjoined by interim president Vladimir Putin.

The official Russian news agency, ITAR-Tass, reported Dec. 22 that the head of the Defense Ministry's Main Directorate for International Military Cooperation, Col. Gen. Leonid Ivashov, said that Russia "will revise the forms and degree of its participation" if NATO refuses to honor the U.N. agreement with Belgrade.

Ivashov added, "Russia is not considering any ways of its withdrawal and exit from Kosovo," signaling Moscow's intent not to withdraw Russian troops from Kosovo as planned, but would "stop cooperating" with NATO.

The next day, Tass reported, Russian Defense Minister Igor Sergeyev, leading a delegation of high ranking military officers, traveled to Belgrade for talks with Milosevic to discuss, among other things, bilateral relations with Belgrade and the situation in Kosovo. Following those talks, Milosevic honored the visiting Russian officers and praised renewed Moscow-Belgrade military cooperation.

3. The Pentagon Press Briefing Transcript

WASHINGTON, Jan. 6 – Here are some excerpts from the barbed-wire exchanges which took place between the media and the Pentagon spokesmen on Jan. 6, about the three-fold speeded up video of the strike on the Grdelica bridge on April 12:

N  E  W  S      B  R  I  E  F  I  N  G


DoD News Briefing P.J. Crowley, PDASD PA and Craig Quigley, RADM, USN, DASD PA Thursday, January 06, 2000 - 2:00 p.m. EST

Q:  There was a German newspaper report that some of the video from -- gun camera video of a misguided -- of a mishap during the Kosovo conflict was played for the public at something like three times normal speed.  Is that report correct?  And if so, why did that happen, and what was the impact?        

Admiral Quigley:   I have been largely away from the office this morning.  Thankfully, P.J. Crowley has not, and he has had time to look into that in detail.  So I will punt to my compatriot here on that issue.

Mr. Crowley:  The short answer is, it is the normal way that the intelligence system processes gun camera footage that starts as 8mm gun camera footage, and that gets translated, through something called the Common Intelligence System, or CIS, which is a Unix-based computer software system, and then ultimately down to a PC, where analysts can study the video.  As that happens, there is an acceleration and a compression of the video, so in this particular case, the video started at the 8mm format at roughly 15 seconds in length.  When it went through first iteration to the CIS, it was compressed to 6.5 seconds.  When it was further compressed to the PC, it got down to about the four-second clip that everyone saw on television on April 12th. This is the way that the system works for all gun camera footage, so there was no manipulation by the authorities in Europe, and in fact I would say that there's nothing new here.  Media that have already gone through this, with the air forces in Europe -- for example, Der Spiegel sent some experts down to Ramstein.  We walked them through how the system works -- worked, and showed them, in essence, what happens as you go through these iterations.  The computer itself starts to drop off frames to deal with the compression

And so this is -- what was unusual about this video clip was you had the single point of reference being the train, and as you saw in the clip, the train at various points jumped slightly That's because the computer itself dropped frames out in order to deal with this requirement for compression.  So this is the way that our intelligence system operates in terms of translating gun camera footage and getting it to the PCs where intelligence analysts can make quick assessments of the gun camera footage, you know, to benefit the operation.

Q:  P.J., when this footage was first shown and briefed at NATO headquarters the next day, on the 13th, General Clark made the point that the weapon systems officer on the F-15 had only a second or so to see the train and possibly react, not enough time to have a reaction. If it turns out that there was actually more time, does that change that?        

Mr. Crowley:  No.  Jamie, good question.  It doesn't change the basic facts of what happened on April 12th.  The pilot and the weapon system officer -- in fact, the weapon system officer is looking through a screen that is five inches by five inches.  He's focused on the bridge, which is his target for that mission.  And this in no way changes the basic facts that they were not able to divert the missile before the train came into their field of vision

Q:  Maybe you could clear up one other thing.  On the clip that was released by NATO the next day, we saw the train on the screen crossing the bridge.  And on the clip there were also white brackets and a cross-hairs in the middle.  Which -- does the weapon systems officer on the plane see everything that was released in that video, or only what's in that bracketed area, the smaller area in the middle?

Mr. Crowley:  Not being a pilot, I don't know that I'm particularly qualified.  We can take that question and try to find out.  My presumption is he's only seeing what's in the brackets, which is a miniaturized version of what we happened to see on television.  But I would probably ask an expert before making that comment

Q:  Admiral Quigley, do you by any chance -- do you know if that is the case, or do you have to take that? 

Admiral Quigley:   The weapons systems officer or the pilot?

Q:  Did they see everything that was in the field of vision on the video that was released, or only what was in the smaller area in the brackets?        

Admiral Quigley:   My understanding is the five-by-five area.   We'll double-check

Mr. Crowley:  Yeah.  Tim just handed me something.  The weapon system officer does not see the entire panorama presented by the video file available on the Internet.  The WSO, or "Wizzo," sees only the image presented inside the four corner markers.  So that's a five inch by five inch monochrome cockpit monitor

Q:  P.J., are you saying that this was not -- this video was not speeded up -- because the SHAPE folks say it was -- at least twice as fast as it actually happened?        

Mr. Crowley:  Well, Jack, in the -- you know, there is a compression and acceleration that goes through the normal process as this goes from 8 millimeters, through the CIS, to the intelligence analyst's PC.  So, yeah, it roughly ends up being something like 2.7 times as fast

Q:  Now, they also said that other video, which we saw, was not speeded up the way this was:  2.7 this was; other video, not 2.7.  So there was a difference in this presentation than in the other presentations

Mr. Crowley:  I can only attribute that to the speed with which we tried to get the video from the intelligence community so that we would all have the benefit of seeing it

Q:  (Inaudible) -- I don't know that anyone -- well, some -- never mind.   I won't ask it that way.

So the issue is why didn't NATO, if in fact this was different, at different speed than was presented on other days, and this was one of those three big critical mistakes that NATO made; why didn't NATO tell us that this one was speeded up, whether by accident or not, where the other ones were not?        

Mr. Crowley:  Well, first of all, let me correct the premise in your question.   This was not speeded up on purpose.  There is a normal acceleration that goes in through this process of converting the gun-camera footage, you know, for the benefit of the intel analyst.   You know, I --         

Q:  The other video that they showed was not.  So this was at a different speed than the other video, which is commonly shown at these briefings.  So it had the effect, whether it was intended or not, of speeding up the video by 2.7 times

Mr. Crowley:  It did speed up the video.  But it didn't change the basic facts of the incident, which is that the pilot and weapon systems officer did not see the train come into their field of view and were not able to divert the missile

Q:  But back to the point of why didn't NATO tell us this? They knew it in October when they had a query from Der Spiegel and acknowledged to Der Spiegel, but to no one else, that, "Whoops!  We showed you something that was nearly three times faster than we thought"?         

Mr. Crowley:  I would say, Jack, you know, the folks at Ramstein Air Base are standing by to walk any news media, who are interested in this story, as they did with Der Spiegel, through the entire process of how this transpired… It happens that, for example, Frankfurter Rundschau was not interested in going through the same careful study that Der Spiegel was…

Q:  Well wait a minute, P.J., can I just follow up on that? You're saying you're waiting for news media to show up.  If you knew you had a mistake, honest though it was, you wouldn't come out on your own initiative and --        

Mr. Crowley:  I'm not saying -- Barb, I would say there was a mistake.   Again, there was no manipulation of this video.  This is the way that when start with what -- 8mm gun-camera footage and go through two -- material that goes to the desk of an intel analyst, this is what you have. I can't speak to the difference between this video and other video that was shown during the Kosovo conflict.

Q:  The question is why would neither NATO nor USAFE or the Department of Defense, once they knew that this situation was not what it was represented to be in public back in April, do you not think it's a problem with credibility to not overtly come out and say, and simply wait for people to come and ask you, even after you know?         

Mr. Crowley:  I would say, first of all, this has not been a major subject of media interest since the end of the Kosovo conflict. Secondly --         

Q:  Well --        

Mr. Crowley:  Well excuse me.  Let me finish.  Now, to the first news organization that looked at this, Der Spiegel, they went to Ramstein, we carefully walked them through this.  We're not hiding anything.  But by the same token, this is not an area that has been of significant news media interest up until now

Q:  P.J., I'm confused about some of the terminology you've used here today.  You described the process by which the train video was used as the "normal" process.  Is that --        

Mr. Crowley:  Remember what gun-camera footage is to allow the pilots, the weapon system officers, the intel analysts to have a quick review of a mission in a campaign.   And so you take the 8mm gun-camera footage off the weapon system, you plug it into something called the Common Intelligence System, which is a UNIX-based system.  That basically -- you first now take the video, load it into the computer, and then you ship that to the PC of the intel analysts.  During the course of those two translations -- to use my word -- you've got this compression and acceleration

Q:  No, I understand that; I understood the technology of it, which seems fairly straightforward.  My question is, you have characterized this as the "normal process" for the treatment of gun camera video.  My question to you --         

Mr. Crowley:  Within the intelligence community; yes.

Q:  Right.  And -- I mean -- all right Is it the normal process for the distribution of gun-camera video, which is done all the time, which was done at the Gulf War, which was done in Kosovo, which is done out of training, it's done in a number of different contexts -- is the process you just described, this two-step production which results in a 2.7 percent acceleration of the video -- is that the normal process for the handling of gun camera video that is distributed to the public?        

Mr. Crowley:  Well, I can't speak to that, Roberto.  I --        

Q:  Excuse me.  Then let me ask you to take the query.

Mr. Crowley:  I understand the premise of your question, which I really can't answer, which is, at the point that you took gun camera footage from the intelligence analyst and prepared it to put it on and distribute it to -- and show it to the news media, if in fact in other cases we have then adapted that video to normal speed and did not do so in this case.  I'm not equipped to answer that question.

Q:  Can I just ask you -- this is a straightforward public affairs question.

Mr. Crowley:  Sure

Q:  It is strictly within your department as to what your policy is on the distribution of gun camera video and in what format it's given to the public.   Your explanation of these events is incomplete without telling us whether this gun camera video and the process you describe as normal for intelligence purposes is the normal process for distribution to the public, so that, like, every bomb we've seen going down a stack and into a building for all these years is actually three times faster than it really happened.

Mr. Crowley:  We will take the question whether in this particular case, we failed to do something we have done in other instances

Q:  Can you get the answer to that within this news cycle?         

Mr. Crowley:  Yes

Q:  Thank you

Q:  Can I follow up on that?  If SHAPE knew about this in October, can you also tell us when the Department of Defense found out about this?        

Mr. Crowley:  We'll take the question.

Q:  Is it the contention, P.J., by both NATO and the U.S. that regardless of how fast this gun camera video was replayed, that the weapons officer still only had one second in which to make that decision; that he saw the train only one second before impact, regardless of how fast this tape was replayed?         

Mr. Crowley:  It does not change the basic facts of the incident, which is that the pilot and weapon systems officer did not have time to divert the missile that had already been fired before the train came into their field of view.

Q:  You're talking about the first AGM-130 shot.  There was a second AGM-130 shot after the first

Mr. Crowley:  I think the clip that we're talking about, my recollection is that it's the first one

Q:  The first.  But then, in the second, the train is now stopped on the bridge.  It is obscured by smoke, perhaps, but it is on the bridge, and there's a second shot.  And what are you saying about the weapons officer on that one?         

Mr. Crowley:  I'm -- we're dealing with the issue.  I'm not here to do a mission debrief, I'm just here to say based on the Frankfurter Rundschau report there was no manipulation to this video, as we've talked about

Q:  But I guess one of the questions is, there were two pieces of video released that day, the next day.  Are they both -- were they both subject to the same acceleration effect?         

Mr. Crowley:  I will presume yes.  I don't know.  You know, I didn't ask a question about the second piece of --         

Q:  And also, will you -- as long as you're taking questions and queries, we'd like to be, if possible, provided with a tape of this event that occurs in -- that's slowed down to what is real time and shows precisely what the pilot actually saw so that we can make an intelligent evaluation --         

Mr. Crowley:  Again, I would think that you basically saw what the pilot saw.   You know, the speed doesn't alter the basic facts that the --        

Q:  You told me that they only saw what was in the brackets, and what the video that was released showed a much wider field.  We'd like to be able to show the public what it is the pilots or the weapons systems officer saw in the actual time that he saw it so the people can make their own judgment about whether the statements that you've said are reasonable

Mr. Crowley:  I understand what you're looking to do.  I'm not sure whether we have the ability to do that or not, but we'll look into it

Q:  On both -- on both tries

Q:  Have you asked SHAPE whether or not this situation occurred in any other released video?        

Mr. Crowley:  I think that's related to what you've already asked. We'll --         

Q:  You've shown other AGM-130s

Mr. Crowley:  We will see whether there was something that has been done to other video that, because of the speed of getting this out, was not done in this particular case.  We've already taken that question. Yes.

Q:  Has anyone done a frame by frame analysis that you can tell us exactly how much time the pilot had from the time the train entered the view and the time that the bomb was launched?        

Mr. Crowley:  Again, I don't think that we're here to get into a mission debrief of exactly what the pilot did and did not do, see and did not see

Q:  Whether they --        

Mr. Crowley:  The heart of this is simply whether this video was manipulated, and our answer is no, it was not, definitively not

Q:  Right.  I understand that.   But what you're standing on is saying that the basic facts haven't changed.  But we feel misled.   And so now we kind of want to have something concrete --         

Mr. Crowley:  Well, again, I think probably the best people to go through review of this particular episode, for example, would be General Leaf, who is the commander at Aviano, or one of the senior leaders at USAFE

And they are prepared to go through this whole incident with you, if that's what you want to do

Q:  Well, General Clark used this video as evidence to support his contention that, look, the weapons officer did not have the ability to keep this from happening and the train from being hit --       

Mr. Crowley:  Let's stay -- let's --         

Q:  No, no, no, but that's -- he used --         

Mr. Crowley:  I understand, but let's stay where, you know, we here at this podium today can deal with.  I cannot give you a mission debrief pertaining to the pilot's actions --         

Q:  But that's what General Clark did at the time --         

Mr. Crowley:  I understand that.  You know, the report today is suggesting that we manipulated this video.  We did not


Q:  P.J., if I'm understanding right, you're telling us that intel officers are routinely looking on their computer screens at video that's been sped up and compressed.  Frames, as I understand what you said, have been dropped out.  Does it give anybody in this building concern that people are making judgments, whether in Kosovo or anywhere else, based on their examination of video that's going almost three times faster than real time, that has had frames cut out? I mean, as a layman, that gives me a lot of concern

Mr. Crowley:  Well, no.  But the primary purpose of this is to judge the success of a particular mission.  You know, where you aiming at the right target?  Did you hit the target?  Does that target need to be re-struck?  So an analyst is going through to evaluate -- or based on the video, did you see any threats that you have to advise your crew members to be careful about if you're operating in the same area?  So first and foremost, this is about helping analysts with -- who are making recommendations on missions as part of the conflict

Q:  So if they're looking at video to help them decide which targets to strike, that's not sped up as well?  For example, the mistake that was made on the Chinese embassy -- were they looking at video that was run three times faster than normal and deciding that that wasn't the Chinese embassy, that it was a real target?        

Mr. Crowley:  Let's not stray too far afield here


Q:  P.J., I'm concerned about some of the use of words here, P.J., and I just want to tell you how your statement appears to conflict with what they are saying in Europe.  And maybe we can clear this up easily

They are saying that the video was not intentionally manipulated, that they accidentally put out video that was 2.7 times faster than what they normally showed to the press briefing.  They didn't intentionally do it.  They did manipulate the video by accidentally putting this out.   It wasn't intentional, they claim; there was no malice, there was no manipulation intended.  But they did accidentally put it out at a different speed.  That's a different story than what you are maintaining here

Mr. Crowley:  We have taken the question as to whether there is something that we have done in other instances, that we failed to do in this instance, which would get at whether, you know, this video is in some way different in its presentation than other examples that we showed during the various briefings during the Kosovo conflict.   I would argue with you that if it is a normal process of working through compression and acceleration of intelligence data that is reviewed by analysts, that's not manipulation.  That is how, you know, you go through these various computer iterations and get to a product. The product was presented as the intelligence analyst normally would see it, and that is not a manipulation

Now, whether we should have backed that down to a slower speed so it's seen in real time -- a fair question, and which we've already taken. But I, again, challenge the assumption that we have in some way manipulated this in a way of trying to mislead people.  We have not

Q:  You said that this product is -- its primary purpose in the way it's -- not "manipulated" but -- excuse me -- the way it's formatted, is for strictly sort of war-fighting purposes, accessing damage, et cetera. In that instance, and in several other instances, both in Kosovo and in other conflicts, gun camera footage has been used by military leaders to make policy points about collateral damage, about the intent of the pilots and weapons officers in a certain incident, it's been used to clarify and explain rules of engagement.  Is there some other formatting that is developed for that purpose?  I mean, is this stuff really dual use, or is it inadequate for --        

Mr. Crowley:  Roberto, let me presume something here; that depending on the time it takes in order to make a presentation, I suppose a question is whether we were able to get our hands on the original 8mm footage, in which case you can make a dub from 8mm to VHS or to Beta so that it can be presented to you all, versus in this particular case where we acquired it once it had gone through this process that is normal for intelligence analysts.  It may well be that because of the short circuit that we took, that meant that we, in essence, got a different product that we didn't realize.  It's quite possible that in the normal routine of getting gun camera footage, as General Wald presented to you here many times, we were working off of the original 8mm gun footage where the compression had not taken place

Q:  You are indicating knowledge of this question that you've taken.  I mean, is that --         

Mr. Crowley:  I am just offering a possible explanation before you will allow me to get off the podium so I can go research the answers to --         

Q:  (Inaudible.)        

Mr. Crowley:  -- the many technical -- the many questions that we have already taken

Q:  But you can go and --         

Mr. Crowley:  (Inaudible.)        

Q:  All right.  (Inaudible) -- I just might point out one thing; it's not really a question.

But you may recall, when this tape was briefed the next day by General Clark, when he began his briefing, he didn't have the tape. And he said that he hoped to have it before the end of the briefing. And at some point before the end of the briefing, the tape arrived.

Q:  He said it was hung in his computer assistant.  So --        

Mr. Crowley:  I think it's important to make one final point here… In the intervening time, since the Kosovo conflict, I have heard no one suggest that this crew operated in error.  I think everyone has understood that they launched a missile based on the field of view that they had at the time and that there was not sufficient time, once that missile was launched, to divert it once they saw the train.  So, under the circumstances and the fog of war, I have heard no one blame this crew for making an error, based on the information that was available to them in the cockpit when they made the decision to launch the missile

Q:  That goes to the second missile also?         

Mr. Crowley:  Again, I have heard no -- you know, I think people understood, based on the information that this crew had in the cockpit at the time that they launched the missile -- and it was only after they launched the missile, that they saw the train come into view

Q:  A new subject?         

Admiral Quigley:   Other topics?  Jamie?       

 Q:  Regarding the Middle East peace talks…


4. Widow of Train Victim Speaks Out

NIS, Jan. 8 – We've just received a letter in reaction to this TiM GW Bulletin from Stela Jovanovic who was widowed by NATO's strike on the Grdelica train.  We bring it to you in translation from Serbian.  But first an introduction to Mrs. Jovanovic, and some background information about how she lost her husband.  Here's an excerpt about it from the TiM editor's recent lecture (Toronto, Dec. 12, 1999):

Text Box:  
Stela Jovanovic
"Stela Jovanovic is one of the most popular TV personalities in Nis, the third largest city in Serbia.  She has won a number of international awards for her documentaries.  You can see her here with yours truly on the set of a Nis TV studio, just before the airing of an hour-long live talk show about the Truth in Media activities.

After the program, as we walked through downtown Nis, Stela told me how it happened….

Her husband was called up as a reservist.  He was on his way to join his army unit when the train was struck.  His body was never found.  Stela said she had searched frantically through every car on that train wreck.  All in vain.  So he is now officially listed as 'missing' by the Yugoslav Army.

Stela's 16-year old daughter refuses to accept her Dad's death.  She got quite cross with her Mom that evening when she dressed in black for our TV show ('black' - color of mourning in Europe)."

And now, here's Stela's letter…

Targets or Mistakes

NIS, Jan. 8 - Targets or mistakes… What difference does that make to me and to my girls?  To me, none whatsoever.  Because I am convinced that that there are evil people in this world who have already changed my life and that of my daughters in the worst possible way.

But maybe it would make a difference if the truth were spoken, out loud.  And if you were to read this letter of mine to those who ordered (the Grdelica train strike), and to those who pressed the button firing the deadly missiles.

We have accepted the death which has been dealt to us in this life.  Maybe those who are responsible for our sorrow, and who will answer for it before God or man, have not accepted their sin as a deathly sin that it is… lives lost which cannot be brought back. 

Maybe their excuse is the little rectangle with black borders on a video film; maybe they are able to reduce their world to a rectangle on the computer screen; maybe that's where they manage to find an excuse for what they've done and what they will be doing - for the pain and suffering they have caused and will be causing as long as levers of weapons are in their hands.

Oh, how I long to be able to tell them that lives and people aren't computer games; that lives of two girls of 16 and 18 years of age mean much, much more than that.  Because they no longer have the father who nurtured them in this life; who carried them in his arms from the moment they arrived in this world; who dreamt with them a thousand dreams about the future together, and they with him.

I am setting myself aside and the 26 years I had spent with him, because I must learn to wear my sorrow in private.  But I don't know how I will be able teach that lesson to the kids.  I am trying to view the film of their lives the way some Pentagon people look at their 8mm films and at the little rectangles on their screens.  And then make their decisions about if someone will live or die.

And I am teaching my children that pain is something one must experience.  But not when someone's mindless games and decisions govern other peoples' lives.

The truth about the target or the wrong target… Why are they shying away from the truth?  The truth will arrive; it must arrive… And what will they do when it catches up to them? 

Is that, for us nameless pilot, who knows that he saw a train full of people, at least a little bit afraid of the truth and of his own thoughts, which he must have, despite being a professional soldier?  Is he at least a little bit afraid of his own realization that he has made some, to him nameless people, terribly unhappy and their lives miserable, because of his mistake or a deliberate hit?  How does one live with such realization, I would really like to hear him explain to me?

I would like to send to him, and I will send to him, pictures of my daughters.  Their names are Milica and Smiljka.  They are 16 and 18 years of age.  And because of him or them; because of his or their decision; they will spend the rest of their lives without a father. 

Does he think, do they think, that that's an easy thing to do?  Do they think that you can also reduce such pain to a small rectangle on a computer screen?  Do they really believe that that rectangle is an excuse for a deathly sin they've committed?  Do they really believe that somebody, anybody… can free them of that responsibility?  Are there people in this world who are without conscience? 

I don't think so.   I don't think that there are people without souls.  Souls cannot be hidden.  And there is no such thing as a perpetual lie.  Nor will their hidden truth change my life, but theirs.  That is why they are hiding the truth.  That is why they are trying to come up with every excuse imaginable.  Because they know that there are no excuses!

I wish I could send to them the photos of the people they've killed with their "small rectangular computer screens."  I wish I could send them to all their screens as small computer icons, so that they have to look at them every day of their lives.  Until the pictures of the dead people enter their souls and stay with them day and night.

Maybe such pictures would prove to them that they do have a soul and conscience?  Maybe when they look at the faces of their loved ones, and they must have at least someone they love and with whom they share their lives, maybe then things would be a little harder for them, too?

Things will never get easier for me, nor for my children.  Which is why I wish to give them their truth and their lies as the most terrible curse which they will have to bear for the rest of their lives.

As for ourselves, despite such mindless people, we will manage.  Somehow.  As we have so far.   Because we have something they don't - a soul!  And that's enough for this life.

Stela Jovanovic -Nis-Yugoslavia

P.S. Bob, if you wish, you may translate this letter.  Maybe it will reach someone.  Maybe someone will understand that they have a soul, too.  And that would mean that at least some good would have come from this tragedy.


TiM Ed.: Mrs. Jovanovic also said she would send us some photos.  We will post them at our Web site when we get them.  So that the NATO murderers who are responsible for the Grdelica strike, and the bombing of other civilian targets in Serbia, can download them and paste them up as little icons on their "rectangular computer screens."  Just as Mrs. Jovanovic wished them to do.  In the meantime, the killers can choose for their icons some of the 400 images of their crimes against humanity which are already posted - .

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Also, check out... CIA and KLA Ties, His Disgrace, Artemije, How Gen. Clark Misled the World, Death on the Danube, Reverse Fascism, Racism of the New World OrderDeath of the City, Cavorting with the Enemy (Albright), Toward a New Multipolar World in the New Millennium, Stitching Together the New World Order Flag, Chinese Embassy; Slovakia; bin Laden and Bosnia, Criminals Return to Scene of Their Crimes, Truth in Media Statement on the Kosovo War, "Wither Dayton, Sprout New War?", "On the Brink of Madness", "Tragic Deja Vu's," "Seven U.S. Senators Suggest Ouster of Milosevic", "Biting the Hand That Feeds You", "A Balkan Affairs Potpourri", "Put the U.N. Justice on Trial", "International Justice 'Progresses' from Kidnapping to Murder", "Milosevic: 'A Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery'...", "Kosovo Lie Allowed to Stand", "New World Order's Inquisition in Bosnia", "Kosovo Heating Up""Decani Monastery Under Siege?", "Murder on Wall Street""Kosovo: 'Bosnia II', Serbia's Aztlan""What If the Shoe Were on the Other Foot?", "Serb WW II General Exonerated by British Archives," "Green Interstate - Not Worth American Lives", "An American Hero or Actor of the Year?" (A June '95 TiM story) and/or "Kocevje: Tito's Greatest Crime?", "Perfidious Albion Strikes Again, Aided by Uncle Sam", "Lift the Sanctions, Now!" (1993)

Or Djurdjevic's WASHINGTON TIMES columns: "Chinese Dragon Wagging Macedonian Tail,"  "An Ugly Double Standard in Kosovo Conflict?", "NATO's Bullyboys", "Kosovo: Why Are We Involved?", and "Ginning Up Another Crisis"

Or Djurdjevic's NEW DAWN magazine columns: "Washington's Crisis Factory,"  and "A New Iron Curtain Over Europe"