FROM PHOENIX, ARIZONA BALKAN AFFAIRS
1. In Memoriam Grdelica Train Victims
2. Grdelica Requiem (by Piotr Bein)
Belgrade 3. Two Prominent Serb Officials Commit SuicideApr. 13, 2002
Belgrade 4. A Mass Grave of 360 Serbs Found in KosovoApr. 21, 2002
“Blowback:” Secrets of Srebrenica Revealed…
How U.S. Armed and Aided Militant Muslim GroupsApr.
Washington 6. Another “Blowback:” Clinton, Other U.S. Officials,
Accused of War Crimes against Serbs by Croat GeneralApr.
Ottawa 7. The Legend of “King Marco”Apr. 22, 2002
In Memoriam Grdelica Train Victims
Letter from a Grdelica Train Widow… Three Years Later
PHOENIX, Apr. 12 - The human and material carnage during the last two weeks of Israel’s latest occupation of West Bank has created a morbid banality of death. Numbed by daily reports of atrocities being committed by the Israeli army, and by a seemingly endless supply of suicide bombers among the Palestinians, the western public seems either tuned out or unable to absorb much more death and gore news.
No wonder two significant “if it bleed, it leads”-stories from the Balkans slipped by in the last two days virtually unnoticed by the Middle East-infatuated media. One news item was a remembrance; the third anniversary of one of the most tragic civilian “collateral damage” incidents during NATO’s bombing of Serbia.
The other was a public protest Serb-style - a suicide attempt right on the Serbian Parliament steps - by a former Minister of Internal Affairs during the Slobodan Milosevic regime. Vlajko Stojiljkovic shot himself in the head to protest the unconstitutional extradition of Serbs to the UN War Crimes Tribunal at the Hague. He left behind a damning suicide note in which he blamed all current Serb leaders, whom he called American quislings, for his death.
In “normal” times, both these stories would have been front-page news with most major media. They still are, for those who mourn every loss of life… but it seems only at TiM, it seems. We start with the Grdelica report…
Three years ago to the day, we published the following wartime report from Serbia:
1. NATO Hits International Passenger Train; At Least 10 Dead
Apr. 12 (1999) - NATO's terror over civilians has reached a new high
today when the international passenger train No. 393, travelling from
Belgrade to Thessalonika, Greece, was bombed around 1PM (7AM EDT) in the
vicinity of Leskovac. At least 10 people were killed and scores of
others hospitalized, the Tanjug news agency has reported. The train
carried both domestic and international passengers, but the identities
of the dead and injured are now known at this time.
Day 20, Upd 1 - Special TiM GW Bulletins (Apr. 12, 1999 - click on the URL at our web site to go to the full story).
Six months later, we met the widow of one of the Grdelica victims in Nis, during our “Tour de Serbia” (Sep. 1999). Suddenly, an old wartime story took on a human face. Her name was Stela Jovanovic, mother of two teenage daughters. Suddenly, Grdelica became a very personal tragedy.
In January 2000, we published another report about the Grdelica bombing. The article showed that the NATO Supreme Commander at the time, Gen. Wesley Clark, misled the world in his contemporaneous remarks about what had really happened (see NATO's Gen. Clark Misled the World re. Grdelica Train - Jan. 8, 2000).
In the same TiM Bulletin, we also published a letter from the Nis widow, in response to our report and the general’s remarks. Here’s how it started…
4. Widow of Train Victim Speaks Out
Jan. 8 (2000) – 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):
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.
the program, as we walked through downtown Nis, Stela told me how it
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.
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
here at our web site to read it).
Today, Apr. 12, 2002, Stela Jovanovic went back to the Grdelica bridge which the train 393 was crossing when it was struck by NATO missiles. It was her first trip back since three years ago. Her younger daughter Smiljka was with her… for the first time. So were many other people from Nis and the surrounding area who were touched by this tragedy. Here is a translation of the letter we’ve just received from Mrs. Jovanovic:
To Those With and Without
“All April 12’s for the
Rest of My Life Will Be Rainy Days”
this day is now also over… This is from me… my own thoughts.
I am sending them to you and to the people with souls.
Also, one more time to those without souls.
THAT April 12 (1999) was sunny, or it rained like today… I do not
remember. All April 12’s
for the rest of my life will be rainy days.
They will be the days when sorrow and terrible memories well
up; when nothing is able to suppress them.
cold rain was falling, almost like winter rains.
They say that when it rains like this, sky is crying.
were also crying… all of us assembled in the field next to the
railroad track on which some other trains are traveling today.
Only the train number 393 was stopped here forever.
years past, I did not have the strength to come to this horrible place. Today, I watched for the first time the eyes of those who
were silently arriving, in groups, with candles and flowers.
They stuck the candles between the stones of the embankment, and
spread the flowers across the grass, covering the places where death lay
on that 12th of wartime 1999 year.
is where the lives were snuffed out of passengers who thought they were
boarding a civilian train to go from Station A to Staiton B, not to
remember how I scoured the burnt-out remains of the train, gathered
scattered documents, personal IDs, school books… all inside scorched
cars, lying on this grassy meadow.
I was looking for a trace (of my husband) I never found…
watched the river with huge trepidation, fearing perhaps she swallowed him. My Raca, whose grandfathers were born beside this Morava
river, used to sing songs to the river.
remember my thoughts back then… “He couldn’t be in there, in his
Morava… maybe not here… maybe he is somewhere else where I don’t
know to look.” I remember
my desperate desire to hide and run away from the awful truth.
the first time today, Smiljka, our now 19-year old daughter, is with me. Milica (22) still does not have the strength to come to this
terrible place. Smiljka
says… “Mom, for the first time, I am aware that this really
such realizations make it easier or more difficult to go on, I do not
know. Friends with whom we
have spent our lives are all here with us.
Everybody is carrying their own pains and memories.
can I say to them? What can
they say to me? What can I
say to Smiljka? “Here’s
(a shot of brandy as toast - TiM Ed.)
for the souls of the deceased… all of them?”
us here are a very strange, very sad family.
Everybody with his own, very unique, immeasurable sorrow.
The names are different; the horror is the same.
the direction of Skopje (from the south - TiM Ed.) a
train is slowly approaching. Then
it slows down even more. Finally,
it stops. Right on the
A long, loud, powerful sound of the train’s whistle pierces the sky and our souls. The machinist walks out (to pay his last respects - TiM Ed.). A woman is crying in a train window. Our souls are being torn apart with the sound of that whistle which is penetrating every part of our bodies. A moment that lasts an eternity...
almost soundlessly, the train begins to glide down the tracks.
Just as the rest of us will also glide slowly into our little
lives without those who are no longer with us.
desperately hug Smiljka because I know I am hugging a part of her
father. She feels it and hugs me back even harder. We stay together like that for a long time, as if to
pass to each
other the strength to go on these tracks.
They were once - it seems like yesterday, it will always be
yesterday - torn apart by a deadly, terrible missile that flew in from
somewhere high up, “precision-guided” straight at our souls by the
people who lost theirs at that very moment.
tried to take our souls away. They
broke away a piece, and left a permanent pain with which we will live
for the rest of our little lives.
But still have our souls. They
were in every flower laid on that field today.
As for those over there, somewhere (in America) in their
they will never get their souls back.
To which the TiM editor, a veteran war correspondent, replied:
you’ve made my eyes water. The
only thing I can tell you is that, as before, I will translate and
publish your letter - as my “Grdelica Memorial.”
Grdelica Requiem (by Piotr Bein)
VANCOUVER, Canada, Apr. 12 - It is of no small consolation to families of other Grdelica victims that some people, relative strangers, do care about their losses. One of them is a Piotr Bein, a Vancouver-based writer of Polish extraction. Here’s what he wroteto Mrs. Jovanovic today (with copy to TiM):
“Bob Djurdjevic mentioned yesterday:
"A close friend of mine lost her husband on that train."
Now I recall I "know" you. "Stela, Milica i
Smiljka" is the name of the chapter where I translated your letter
to Bob Djurdjevic in a Polish book "NATO na Balkanach."
Mr. Bein also wrote a poem about it, which was published in the same book. Here it is in an English translation (the Serbian translation is also available, through a link at our web site). Here is the start of it:
for Train No. 393
the author from his Polish original, edited by Magnus Bein)
Rut-tut of a wagon
over concrete joints
Song of Whitney
Houston in the walkman
of the Serbs”
Engine of the
world’s best fighter jet
No sound, no sight
To read the rest of the poem, click here (at our web site).
(in English) (click here at our web site to read a Serbian translation by Srba Mitrovic)
Two Prominent Serb Officials Commit SuicideApr.
BELGRADE, Apr. 13 - Two prominent Serb officials committed suicide within a day of each other - one in Belgrade, another in Madrid (Spain).
We’ve already told you about “a public protest Serb-style” - a suicide attempt by a former Minister of Internal Affairs during the Slobodan Milosevic regime, Vlajko Stojiljkovic - right on the federal parliament steps. Early this morning (Apr. 13), the body of Miodrag Kovac, health minister in the current federal government, was found at the Eurobuilding Hotel in Madrid. Spanish police said he was found hanging in his bathroom, according to Reuters.
The two suicides appear unrelated.
Stojiljkovic shot himself in the head to protest the unconstitutional extradition of Serbs to the UN War Crimes Tribunal at the Hague. He died this evening (Apr. 13) at a Belgrade hospital. He left behind a damning suicide note in which he blamed all current Serb leaders, whom he called American quislings, for his death.
It is unclear why Kovac decided to take his life. An accomplished surgeon and a father of three, he left suicide notes for his family, the party he belonged to (Socialist Peoples Party of Montenegro-SNP), and to his native Montenegro. In his letter, Kovac reportedly lamented that he had “trusted some people too much.”
Belgrade ‘s Blic (a daily) reported today that Kovac had been under verbal and character assault by Milo Djukanovic’s (Montenegro president) ruling party. For more details, click here at our web site to go to the Belgrade Blic English language web site.
Stojiljkovic, 65, was in charge of Yugoslav police from 1997 until the fall of the Milosevic regime in October 2000. His friends and associates said he had been planning this suicide since June of last year, when Milosevic was forcibly transferred to the Hague prison on orders of Serbia’s prime minister Zoran Djindjic.
Djindjic is a leading Serb quisling who was trying back then to secure some western financing in return his “services” to Washington, as he is doing now with the new extradition law (see “Milosevic at the Hague: A Mockery of Justice”, June 2001).
Stojiljkovic’s 15-page suicide note was
read out in front of the parliament where he shot himself, by the Radical
Party legislator Aleksandar Vucic.
"By this act I, as a deputy of the federal parliament, express my protest against all members of the puppet authorities," said the note. “For my death I consider responsible and directly accuse: Zoran Djindjic, Vojislav Kostunica, Dusan Mihajlovic, Vladan Batic, Miroljub Labus, Dragoljub Micunovic, Predrag Bulatovic, Srdja Bozovic and Dragisa Pesic.”
Stojiljkovic’s friends say he started writing the note
in June 2001, and completed it just before his suicide attempt.
He was indicted by the
Hague at the height of NATO’s war against Serbia, along with Milosevic
and two other Serb officials (see “Madam
Kangaroo,” May 27, 1999).
Vojislav Kostunica described the suicide as a "tragic event,"
and said it was a "warning to the international community that
constantly sets conditions, pressures us and dictates behavior,"
according to a BBC
World News report.
extradition and co-operation law was passed on Apr. 11 after the United
States froze its aid to Yugoslavia because of delays in handing over war
crimes suspects (also see “Serb
Quislings Snubbed by Washington, Apr. 3, 2002). But State Department spokesman Philip Reeker said Washington would wait
for "urgent and effective action" before deciding whether to
free up the billions of dollars of funds.
Guess a suicide is
not a sufficiently “urgent and effective action.”
It figures. What does Washington care if one more Serb is dead or alive as long as they continue to run the show in Belgrade? They’d probably rather have all the indictees dead. Dead people cannot point the accusing finger at the prosecution (strike that, persecution!), and its Washington masters. Milosevic’s savvy defense so far at the Hague has shown that the West will have its hands full trying to make the war crimes charges stick, even in a kangaroo court such as the UN Tribunal.
Five years ago, another prominent Serb, Bosnian Serb vice president and Shakespearean scholar, Dr. Nikola Koljevic, also committed suicide by a gunshot wound to the head (see "Perfidious Albion" Strikes Again, Aided by "Uncle Sam" , Jan. 1997).
the fifth Serb to die while either imprisoned or indicted by the Hague
Tribunal (see “Put
the UN Justice on Trial,” Aug. 1998, and "International
Justice 'Progresses' from Kidnapping to Murder",
July 1998). In his suicide note he also said that the “citizens-patriots of this
country will know how to avenge my death.”
scarcely 200 people showed up to protest the new law, which some Belgrade
legal experts have said was unconstitutional (see
Quislings Snubbed by Washington, Apr. 3, 2002).
Banality of death
seems to have set in in Serbia, too.
Nobody seems to care much anymore.
After 13 years of resisting the western sanctions and the bombs,
and following more than five years of internal struggle with the Milosevic
regime, not just with local ethnic foes, the Serb people seem to be just
plain pooped. Worn out.
Above all - emotionally.
But knowing the
Serb history, this will be probably just another respite to heal the
wounds before the next battle - maybe to try to regain Kosovo, the Serb
holy land? But that will be up to another generation of Serb patriots.
Perhaps when the New World Order empire starts to show signs of rot
After all, the Balkans has always been a graveyard of empires… (see "Partnership for Peace: A New 'Drang Nach Osten'", Apr. 16, 1995).
and West Bank: Reverse Symmetries
BELGRADE, Apr. 16 - With all eyes and ears focused on the Middle East and the alleged mass graves of Palestinian victims in Jenin, West Bank, an Apr. 16 story that we have just received from a TiM reader in Serbia has been all but ignored by the world media. A mass grave of 360 Serbs believed to have been killed by Albanians has been recently uncovered near Pristina, Kosovo (see the photo below)..
Not only is this war crime on an equal scale with that alleged to have been perpetrated by Israel in Jenin, but it was carried out by the folks the western media had depicted as innocent lambs - the “victims of the repressive Milosevic regime” - the mostly Muslim Kosovo Albanians, whom the U.S. has been backing.
What happened in Kosovo and what happened in West Bank are examples of reverse symmetries. With one constant… In both case, Washington was backing the “bad guys.” “Birds of a feather flock together?”
Here’s that Apr. 16 story:
RUDARE, Kosovo, Serbia, Tuesday, April 16, 2002 5:23 PM: Unknown members of the families of people that were lost on the area of Kosovo during the war, identify the remains of the clothes of the dead Serbian people from Kosovo, with handkerchiefs on their faces in Rudare, 300 km south of Belgrade, Tuesday 16 April 2002. UN Police from Kosovo displayed the clothes and remains of 350 bodies (actually 360, according to the AP - TiM Ed.), believed to be Serbs, found in graves near Pristina. Tuesday Apr. 16 was the last of four days the remains could be identified. About 600 people visited the UN tents and about 50 remains were recognized.
And who is going to go to the Hague for this war crime? Why isn’t Madam Kangaroo (Carla Del Ponte) beating down the doors of NATO/KFOR or UNMIK in Kosovo, demanding an immediate extradition of the Kosovo Albanian leaders responsible for this atrocity? Why isn’t the “international community” expressing outrage over this war crime, and imposing sanctions of the Kosovo Albanian regime, lest they extradite the culprits? As for our American Poodles and our lamestream media, we know why they are silent about it, don’t we?
P.S. To view another (gruesome) photo published in the Washington Post online photo gallery on Apr. 16, click here. The WP did NOT run a story about it, however, even though it evidently had the AP Apr. 14 wire referenced above.
“Blowback:” How U.S. Armed and Aided Radical Islamic Groups in Bosnia
Dutch Government Falls... What About Washington?
PHOENIX, Apr. 22 -
The London Guardian published in its Monday (Apr. 22) edition a stunning
confirmation of many of our Bosnia reports from the 1990s.
Based on the evidence we gathered both in Bosnia and elsewhere, we
alleged that a close, covert collaboration and collusion had existed
between Washington and radical Islamic movements around the world (see “Ayatollah
Klintonmeini,” April 1996, for example).
and Islamic fundamentalists found a common interest in the early 1990s in
helping the Bosnian Muslims fight and demonize the Serbs.
And now, just as in Osama bin Laden’s and Saddam Hussein’s
cases - a “blowback!” The U.S. government is having to harvest what it
had sowed - terrorism!
A Dutch inquiry
into what happened in Srebrenica, released last week, is “the most
sensational reports on western intelligence ever published,” says the
Guardian columnist, Richard J Aldrich, professor of politics at the
University of Nottingham.
We’ll let you be
the judge. Here’s an
excerpt from today’s Guardian OpEd piece:
America used Islamists to arm the Bosnian Muslims
The Srebrenica report reveals the Pentagon's role in a dirty war
Richard J Aldrich
official Dutch inquiry into the 1995 Srebrenica massacre, released last
week, contains one of the most sensational reports on western intelligence
ever published. Officials have been staggered by its findings and the
Dutch government has resigned. One of its many volumes is devoted to
clandestine activities during the Bosnian war of the early 1990s.
five years, Professor Cees Wiebes of Amsterdam University has had
unrestricted access to Dutch intelligence files and has stalked the
corridors of secret service headquarters in western capitals, as well as
in Bosnia, asking questions.
findings are set out in "Intelligence and the war in Bosnia,
1992-1995". It includes remarkable material on covert operations,
signals interception, human agents and double-crossing by dozens of
agencies in one of dirtiest wars of the new world disorder.
Now we have the full story of the secret alliance between the
Pentagon and radical Islamist groups from the Middle East designed to
assist the Bosnian Muslims - some of the same groups that the Pentagon is
now fighting in "the war against terrorism". Pentagon operations in Bosnia have delivered their own
added - TiM Ed.)
the 1980s, Washington's secret services had assisted Saddam Hussein in his
war against Iran. Then, in 1990, the US fought him in the Gulf. In both
Afghanistan and the Gulf, the Pentagon had incurred debts to Islamist
groups and their Middle Eastern sponsors.
1993, these groups, many supported by Iran and Saudi Arabia, were anxious
to help Bosnian Muslims fighting in the former Yugoslavia and called in
their debts with the Americans. Bill Clinton and the Pentagon were keen to
be seen as credit worthy and repaid in the form of an Iran-Contra style
operation - in flagrant violation of the UN security council arms embargo
against all combatants in the former Yugoslavia.
result was a vast secret conduit of weapons smuggling though Croatia. This
was arranged by the clandestine agencies of the US, Turkey and Iran,
together with a range of radical Islamist groups, including Afghan
mojahedin and the pro-Iranian Hizbullah. Wiebes reveals that the British
intelligence services obtained documents early on in the Bosnian war
proving that Iran was making direct deliveries.
purchased by Iran and Turkey with the financial backing of Saudi Arabia
made their way by night from the Middle East. Initially aircraft from Iran
Air were used, but as the volume increased they were joined by a
mysterious fleet of black C-130 Hercules aircraft. The report stresses
that the US was "very closely involved" in the airlift.
Mojahedin fighters were also flown in, but they were reserved as shock
troops for especially hazardous operations. […]
than the CIA, the Pentagon's own secret service was the hidden force
behind these operations. The UN protection force, UNPROFOR, was dependent
on its troop-contributing nations for intelligence, and above all on the
sophisticated monitoring capabilities of the US to police the arms
embargo. This gave the Pentagon the ability to manipulate the embargo at
will: ensuring that American Awacs aircraft covered crucial areas and were
able to turn a blind eye to the frequent nighttime comings and goings at
flown in during the spring of 1995 were to turn up only a fortnight later
in the besieged and demilitarised enclave at Srebrenica. When these
shipments were noticed, Americans pressured UNPROFOR to rewrite reports,
and when Norwegian officials protested about the flights, they were
reportedly threatened into silence. […]
All of which, plus secret flights and arms deliveries from Albania to
Tuzla, we had extensively documented in our CONTEMPORANEOUS reports (TiM
Bulletins), not 7-8 years later, such as in the Dutch report. And
now, the Dutch government has fallen because the truth got out.
O tempora, o
mores… What a world we live in. You’d
think governments would be celebrating the truth, not resigning because of
Speaking of which,
why isn’t anyone in Washington resigning?
To read the full Guardian report, click here at our web site.
To read an English summary of the original Dutch report by the Netherlands Institute for War Documentation (NIOD), click here.
For earlier TiM reports about Srebrenica, run a Search at our web site using it as keyword. Here is a selection of some of our reports referencing Srebrenica…
TiM GW Bulletins" (Mar. 31, 1999)
in a Day's Work (Karadzic)" - A Travel Vignette
"Peace" 20 - Special TiM GW Bulletins (July 23, 1999)
What's the Full Truth?" (WSJ letter, 2/09/96)
Albion" Strikes Again, Aided by "Uncle Sam" - TiM GW ...
the Sanctions, Now!"- TiM GW Bulletin 93-10 (Oct/93)
KFOR "Peacefarce" 48 - Special TiM GW Bulletins (Oct. 26 ...
Balkan Affairs Potpourri" - TiM GW Bulletin (10/24/98)
Clinton, Other U.S. Officials, Accused of War Crimes against SerbsApr.
PHOENIX, Apr. 22 -
Bill Clinton and other top officials in his administration have been accused
of war crimes against the Serbs, according to an article in today’s (Apr.
22) Washington Times. No, the
charge does not relate to the 1999 NATO bombing of Serbia.
(God willing, that is yet to come).
Nor was it leveled by a Serb or a Serbophile.
“blowback” - Washington’s past sins coming back to bite it. The
accusation was made by a lawyer for a Croatian general who has been himself
indicted for war crimes by the International War Crimes Tribunal at the Hague.
And the general isn’t taking it
Luka Misetic, the lawyer, said the U.S. support and approval
for the 1995 military offensive dubbed “Oluja” (the “Storm”) means the
indictment against Gen. Ante Gotovina “could lead to the prosecution by The
Hague tribunal of Mr. Clinton and other high-ranking U.S. officials on charges
of having command responsibility for war crimes that were committed during the
"The theory against Gotovina can now be brought against
Clinton, [Assistant Secretary of State Richard] Holbrooke and all the way down
the U.S. chain of command. On the prosecution's logic, they should be indicted
as well. They knew the attack was coming and gave it the green light,"
Mr. Misetic told the Washington Times.
"The prosecutor's office is punting on an issue that is
clearly there. They are claiming that ethnic cleansing took place during this
operation. They are claiming that by virtue of his position, Gotovina had
knowledge of war crimes. His knowledge was shared and given to him by the
Pentagon," he said.
Florence Hartmann, spokeswoman for chief prosecutor Carla del
Ponte, said the Tribunal was not challenging the legitimacy of Croatia's
military offensive, but individual atrocities carried out by Croatian soldiers
whose actions fell under the responsibility of Gen. Gotovina.
To read the full WT story, click here at our web site.
And now, a story behind the story…
If “picture is worth a thousand words,” than this picture - the August 1995 “ethnic cleansing” of over 150,000 Serbs from Croatia and Western Bosnia - is a picture-perfect example of the of New World Order at work. We have had it posted at our web site just about since our Internet debut, back in 1997. But only now that it seems to be hitting home - in America. Thanks to a Croat general who was used as a tail-end of the NWO anti-Serb whip.
Indeed, Gen. Gotovina was hardly a “lone star of ethnic cleansing.” Contemporaneously published TiM Bulletins had provided ample examples of American complicity in these war crimes, as well as in prior and subsequent illicit arming and training of Islamic radicals in Bosnia (see Item 5 above).
While Gotovina was doing his dirty work for Franjo Tudjman, Croatia’s late president, Peter Galbraith, the American ambassador in Zagreb at the time, was the U.S. “Johnny on the spot.” So enthusiastic was Galbraith about the success of the Croat ethnic cleansing mission, that he even reportedly rode atop a Croat tank in jubilation.
The Los Angeles Times, for example, also reported extensively about the dirty work that Galbraith carried out on behalf of the Clinton administration. Here are excerpts from a Dec. 23, 1996 LA Times article:
hundreds of pages of classified documents obtained recently by The Times shed
new light on the murky venture and indicate that administration officials came
closer than previously known to aiding the flow of Iranian arms into the
particular, the secret cables and depositions of key figures raise questions
about whether Lake and other top policymakers kept a tight leash on Galbraith,
a U.S. point man in the sensitive operation, as he walked the line between
diplomacy and illegal covert action and between the desperate Bosnian state
and America's Iranian nemesis. […]
had details on how the arms pipeline would work before Clinton agreed to allow
it to proceed unchallenged. Just before Clinton gave the nod, Galbraith
relayed that the arms would arrive in "unmarked 747s" and that the
Croatians would take a large cut.
* Lake and
other senior administration officials took exceptional steps to keep the U.S.
role secret. Samuel R. "Sandy" Berger, then deputy national security
advisor and now Clinton's choice to succeed Lake, upbraided NSC staffer
Jenonne Walker for passing on a Galbraith request for written orders,
according to her classified testimony. "Damn it, Jenonne! He is not going
to get his instructions in writing, he has his instructions," Berger told
hid his knowledge of the Iranian arms pipeline from a team of U.N. inspectors
who came to Zagreb to investigate reports of Iranian arms smuggling. […]
CIA cables, Galbraith approached the CIA's station chief in Zagreb in February
or March 1994 to suggest that the United States could mount a covert action in
which America would look the other way while Croatia allowed smuggled arms to
cross through to neighboring Bosnia. Stunned at the suggestion, the CIA
station chief reported the conversation to CIA headquarters. […]
The [CIA Zagreb] station chief cabled CIA headquarters on Sept. 14, 1995, to report that "Galbraith has told [me] that it is the [U.S.] policy to do and say nothing to inhibit the flow of arms. Further, he has told [me] that it is the intent of this policy to facilitate the delivery of same."
shipments continued until January 1996, after U.S.-led peacekeeping troops
arrived in Bosnia. […]
As for Florence Hartmann, Carla Del Ponte’s spokeswoman at the Hague, asked by reporters whether the prosecutor's office was planning to issue indictments against either Mr. Clinton or other administration officials, Mrs. Hartmann said: "We have no comment because there is no evidence to substantiate the charges of Gen. Gotovina's lawyers. They can make their case with evidence to the court."
Mr. Misetic, the lawyer, dismissed Mrs. Hartmann's comments as
"blatant hypocrisy," according to the Washington Times.
Hartmann, a French citizen and a former Le Monde Belgrade correspondent, is a piece of work, according to our sources in Serbia. Many Serbs think she has been picked as the Hague prosecutor’s spokeswoman because of her proven Serbophobic reports as a journalist. Married to a Croat from Srem (a district in Serbia west of Belgrade that borders Croatia), Hartmann “distinguished” herself as one of very rare foreign reporters to whom the Yugoslav government refused to renew a visa.
Here’s an excerpt from a story about her from a Feb. 24,
2001 issue of “Ilustrovana Politika,” a Belgrade magazine, which also
quoted a fellow-French journalist’s opinion of Hartmann:
Like an angry Smurf, at press conferences held every day, she [Hartmann] lifts
her finger and points at the
southeast of Europe:
Yugoslav government must not delay extradition of persons accused of war
crimes. This preparation of a law on cooperation with the international
tribunal seems like a bid to buy time. If cooperation doesn't begin within the
foreseeable future, we will request the reinstatement of sanctions against
Yugoslavia. Some of those sanctions were only temporarily suspended anyway
until we see what the new government is going to do." […]
Marie Matei of the Paris "Teleobjektif" recently wrote an open
letter of warning to the Serbian media:
it possible that no one has bothered to investigate Florence
Hartmann-Domankusic's methods of work during the time that she was "Le
Monde's" correspondent in Belgrade? To what extent she is objective and
neutral, and consequently, the Hague tribunal as well, can best be seen by her
articles on Gospic and Vukovar (a city in Croatia whose residents were 67
percent Serb before it was taken over by Croat Tomislav Mercep) before the
bombing, as well as on Marin Selo and Pakracka Poljana, Paulin Dvor... while
at the same time she searched Vojvodina with a magnifying glass looking to
find a Croatian victim somewhere; and when she would find one, she would show
all her foreign reporter colleagues whom she personally met and
"joined" regularly at Belgrade Airport after learning of their
arrival from her husband, one of the airport's directors.
strange that the file on the murder of Serbs in Gospic in 1991 disappeared
from the tribunal archives at the same time that Mrs. Hartmann-Domankusic
became Carla del Ponte's press assistant?"
has a point; in the West, one's previous work is a very important determinant
to one's further career. […] But let's take a look whether it is indeed
Florence Hartmann-Domankusic who is threatening us with sanctions…
year-old lady, who carries a French passport, received her first identity card
for foreigners in Belgrade on June 2, 1989 as the wife of Engineer Emil
Domankusic, employed at Belgrade Airport in Surcin. Emil is the son of General
Stjepan Domankusic, a native of Slobodnica near Slavonski Brod /Croatia/, who
served as deputy chief of the Security Department of the [COMMUNIST
YUGOSLAVIA’S! - TiM Ed.] State Defense Council, who
as a counter-intelligence officer was known in certain circles by the codename
So it looks like it’s “all in the family,” doesn’t it? Spooks Galore, Inc. at work in the Balkans against the Serbs - the designated culprits.
So don’t expect any time soon the Washington flunkies, like Hartmann or her Madam Kangaroo boss whose salaries the U.S. is paying, to bite the hand that feeds them and file war crimes charges against Clinton et. al. But the latest Washington “blowback” does have a twist of irony. The Serb victims’ greatest defendant turns out to be their former Croat henchman.
Who says that only the Milosevic trial would put the New World Order on trial?
Canadian Soldier Killed by American “Friendly Fire” Was a “King” to Some Bosnian Serbs
The Legend of “King Marco”
His Commanding Officer: “The King Is Dead. Long Live the King!”
OTTAWA, Apr. 22 - He
arrived in Bosnia as a sergeant. He
left it as a king. At least
that’s what the Serbs of Livno Valley called Sgt. Marc Leger.
Their “King Marco was a humble Canadian whose boundless empathy and
dogged determination helped them start to rebuild their homes and lives in
The Livno Serbs’ world was shattered in the summer of 1995 by the U.S.-sponsored ethnic cleansing, carried out by the Croat army under the code name “Oluja” (“Storm” - see Item 6 of this TiM Bulletin).
Now Sgt. Leger is back
home in his native Canada. He
arrived this weekend - in a casket. He
was one of the four Canadian soldiers whose lives were snuffed out Apr. 18 in
Kandahar, Afghanistan, by “friendly fire” (an oxymoron - i.e.,
by the not-so-smart American missiles). The
President, of course, apologized to the government and the people of Canada.
Sgt. Leger may be
gone, but the legend of “King Marco” lives on.
And no longer only through memories of his young widow in Edmonton, or
of the Serbs in Livno. “The
King Is Dead. Long Live the King!” - is how his commanding officer, Major
Shane Schreiber, finished a moving tribute to this 37-year old, written in
Kandahar the day after his death.
The letter, carried by
the Canadian Press newswire on Apr. 20, has now been published by news media
right across our northern neighbor’s vast land. Now
the whole country knows what a great son Canada has had in Sgt. Leger.
As Major Schreiber summed it up in his letter:
find incredible is that Sgt. Leger was not all that different from every other
trooper in my company. What I find even more surprising is how an institution
as publicly maligned and neglected as the Canadian army can continue to
consistently attract and retain guys like Marc Leger.
Jack Granatstein has said of another Canadian army at another time, it is
probably a better organization than the people of Canada know or deserve. Marc
Leger, and his fellow soldiers are, as the Prime Minister has already said,
"the best face of Canada."
He was a
goddamned hero, and we should all take our lead from his spirit and his
And now, for those of you who wish to read Maj. Schreiber’s entire tribute as published by Canada's National Post, just click here.
A PS… Karadzic’s Premonition or Good
Meanwhile, reading Maj. Schreiber’s tear-jerking letter brought back some of this writer’s own memories from one of his wartime trips to Bosnia.
It was July 1995; the lull just before the “Storm.” Srebrenica had just fallen into Serb hands as I arrived in Bosnia. On our way from Serbia to Han Pijesak, Pale and other points around Sarajevo, my driver and I saw many buses and trucks full of Muslim civilians being transported from Srebrenica to Tuzla (a city in the northern Muslim territory in Bosnia). We also saw some Muslim soldiers retreating through the woods in the direction of Tuzla.
Once in Pale, then the capital of the Bosnian Serb Republic, I spent most of the next two days in meetings with various Serb leaders, including President Radovan Karadzic. As you could have seen from two travel vignettes available at our web site [“All in a Day’s Work” (Karadzic, July 1995) and “On the Run…” (Bosnia, July 1995) - click on the titles at our web site to read them], President Karadzic and I spent much of the day talking in his office, and watching live CNN and SKY News reports from Tuzla and elsewhere.
One of the things I remember distinctly is Karadzic’s prediction (or premonition or good intel, take your pick) that the Croats would attack him from the south. And that they would then try to take Knin, the capital of the Serb Krajina, from the north (i.e., from Bosnia -actually technically the Hercegovina part - see the map).
Since I’ve always kept very careful notes of all of my wartime meetings and conversation, I went to look up today what, if anything, President Karadzic and I may have discussed about Livno back then. And voila! Take a look at this paragraph, being published now for the first time ever (RK = Radovan Karadzic):
RK said that
the attacks on Srebrenica and Zepa were a part of what he called “My Order
No. 7.” He said that their
objective is “to raise the temperature to the boiling point.”
also said that he expected the Croats to try to relieve the pressure on Bihac
by attacking Knin through Bosnia (from Duvno and Livno) [emphasis
Which is exactly what happened in August 1995. The “Storm” started blowing from the south, in the Livno area.
Why Karadzic and Gen. Ratko Mladic, then the top commander of the Bosnian Serb Army, didn’t act on this evidently good intel to prevent the Croat assault from the south, is a mystery that I had not been able to figure out for a long time. But on my way back to Bosnia to meet with Gen. Mladic in May 1996, I got an answer from a Bosnian Serb officer who was there during the “Storm” and the subsequent NATO bombing.
So I also looked up today that conversation, as recorded in my travel diary almost six years ago. Here’s an excerpt, also being published now for the first time ever:
that the RS military had received a message from the British contacts that it
would be okay for them to take Srebrenica.
“That was the first part of the trap,” he said.
This once again led to “the whole world’s condemnation of the Serb
aggression,” a modest NATO bombing, the subsequent London conference in July
1995, after which new threats were issued to the Bosnian Serbs, should they
attack Gorazde. Later in August,
accusations of massacres of 5,000 to 10,000 of Srebrenica defenders followed.
Srebrenica and later Zepa was a mistake,” MSM said.
“These Muslim enclaves weren’t a threat to us. They would have fallen, sooner or later.”
(“like ripe pears,” as another Serb general told me during a
visit there in July 1994).
were hoping that we would also attack Gorazde,” he added.
“But once we realized this was a trap, we stopped.
So they had to stage the ‘Markale II’ massacre in Sarajevo (Aug.
28, 1995), which they blamed on us, to give themselves a pretext to bomb
I asked him
to explain why Grahovo and Glamoc fell so easily last summer, considering that
this Croatian move was anticipated, and that until then victorious Gen.
Manojlovic was the top commander, along with at least three other generals (Gvero,
Djukic, Tolimir) who were from Glamoc.
that all three of the latter were there, fighting on the front lines, along
with common soldiers (“maybe that was a mistake?” I thought.
“Aren’t the generals supposed to plan and execute strategic and
tactical moves, not shoot rifles?”).
mistake was that, after the Croatians took Grahovo and Glamoc, the Serb
leadership ordered a counter-attack.
didn’t make any sense to me, from a military standpoint,” MSM said.
“The terrain behind Grahovo and Glamoc was such that we didn’t need
much manpower to defend it. Instead,
we put ourselves back into the situation where the superior Croatian artillery
(U.S. supplied and trained - TiM Ed.) gave them a big advantage.
counter-offensive failed, and given the organized surrender of the Serb
Krajina (by Gen. Mrksic - on Slobodan Milosevic’s orders), there was general
panic among our troops. By the
time we were able to regroup and mount a credible defense again, the Muslims
and the Croats had taken most of the Bosnian Krajina.”
And that’s how the Serbs lost their ancestral lands in the "Storm" of 1995.
For those of you interested in learning more about how the Canadian soldiers deployed in Livno helped the returning Serbs rebuild their homes and lives, check out the “SFOR Informer,” an online publication by clicking here at our web site. The information is pretty dated (as of October 2000), but is nonetheless very relevant to the Sgt. Leger story. As you saw, he and Maj. Schreiber served there in 2000, though neither is mentioned in this SFOR newsletter.
See TiM Readers' Forum some reactions and comments about these and other articles.
Also see… Serb Quislings Snubbed by Washington, American Spy Scandal in Belgrade, Yugoslavia: Prison of Nations, Graveyard of Empires, Dies a Quiet Death!, "From Apparatchik to Bogeyman to Martyr," “Milosevic at the Hague: A Mockery of Justice” (June 2001), “Hail to the Yugo Chief, Followed by Turn-about-Face” (Jan. 16, 2001), “How Washington Bought the Yugoslav Presidency” (Dec. 12, 2000), “Kostunica Snubs Albright; Serbia Is in Love, Again...,” (Nov. 28, 2000), "Fifth Column," Not Street "Revolutionaries" Toppled Milosevic (Oct 25, 2000), “Serb "Ostrich Revolution" Was Anything But Spontaneous,” (Oct. 11, 2000), “How Milosevic Sold Out Kosovo,” Sep. 1, 1999, "Milosevic: 'A Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery'..." - TiM GW Bulletin 98/6-6 (6/22/98), “Toward Another ‘Red October,’” (Sep. 8, 2000), "Biting the Hand That Feeds You" (November 1998), "A Balkan Affairs Potpourri" (October 1998), "Put the U.N. Justice on Trial" (August 1998), "International Justice 'Progresses' from Kidnapping to Murder" (July 1998), "Jimmy Carter Is a Trojan Horse" (TiM Dec/94+The News, 1/05/95), and other stories in the The Balkans Affairs section of the TiM web site.
Also, check out... Djurdjevic's WASHINGTON TIMES columns: "Christianity Under Siege," "Silence Over Persecuted Christians", "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 (Australia) magazine columns: "Macedonia: Another Farcical American Oil War," "Anti-Christian Crusades," "Blood for Oil, Drugs for Arms", "Washington's Crisis Factory," and "New Iron Curtain Over Europe"