The New York Times
Thursday, October 28, 1993


By Bob Djurdjevic

A letter to the editor regarding the Anthony Lewis column, The Siege Is Over," (Oct. 18, 1993)

To the Editor:

Anthony Lewis, in "The Siege Is Over" (column, Oct. 18) feels sorry for the 300,000 Sarajevo civilians who have to endure a new outbreak of fighting.  And who wouldn't?  But he shows no empathy for the far greater suffering that United Nations sanctions are causing in Serbia.

What's happening in Bosnia and Herzegovina is war.  People get killed in wars.   The Bosnian Muslims Government, which started the war, had a chance to put a stop to it in late September.  But it rejected the Geneva peace agreement. 

Mr. Lewis also fails to point out that the Serbs only fired back in retaliation for Muslim attacks in Sarajevo.  The United Nations protection force has corroborated this.

What is happening in Bosnia is not a "genocide," as Mr. Lewis alleges.   It is a tragedy largely inflicted on the Muslims by their own Government. But, what's happening in Serbia is a quiet genocide - perpetrated by the "civilized" West.  We are depriving 10 million people of access to medicines.  I have just returned from a 12-day journey through Serbia and Bosnia, which included visits to hospitals, where people are dying from curable diseases.  I even had to bring aspirin for my 83-year old mother.

"There is a crime of quiet extermination of 150,000 patients with cancer, and 500,000 chronic patients going on, Dr. Miodrag Djordjevic, head of the Belgrade Institute of Oncology and Radiology wrote in a letter to the World Health Organization.

What's happening in Bosnia is not genocide.  What's happening in Serbia is.


Phoenix, Oct. 22, 1993

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