Behind the Headlines
by Justin Raimondo

June 1, 2001

A note from Justin Raimondo: Since I'm suffering from heat prostration today (it's currently 101 degrees here in San Francisco!) and since I didn't take Memorial Day off, I'm taking a break today. But here's a past column that I know you'll find interesting. It was my last "Wartime Diary" column, a daily series that started when the first bombs fell on Belgrade and ended when the war ended. In summing up the lessons of that war, and predicting the dissolution of Macedonia, I think this last edition of my "Wartime Diary" gives you something of the flavor of the early – and perhaps will give you the incentive to go exploring in our archives.

Originally published June 11, 1999


It wasn't so much what Clinton said in his speech to the nation tonight as it was how he said it: the gloating in his voice barely contained, his oleaginous face twisted into a caricature of solemnity, those feral eyes triumphantly gleaming. It was better not to see, and just listen to the words, the lies that flowed uninterruptedly from his thick, obscenely sensual lips: "I can report to the American people that we have achieved a victory for a safer world, for our democratic values, and for a stronger America." Every word of this sentence is an outrageous lie. First, the world is far less safe than when the war began: the entire region has been destabilized, with Macedonia on the verge of a complete collapse, Russia alienated, China up in arms – and every separatist splinter group from Chechnya to Sinkiang now looking to the United States and NATO as the champions of their cause. A safer world? What planet is the President living on?


Secondly, "democratic values" had absolutely nothing to do with NATO's assault on Yugoslavia. The political result of this war on the ground in Kosovo will be to install in power one of the last totalitarian Marxist groups in Europe of any significance – and one of the spookiest. Their ideological lodestar is the late Enver Hoxha, the Albanian Communist dictator who broke with China's Mao for being insufficiently Stalinist; Adem Demaci, one of the founders of the movement, is a longtime Stalinist with close ties to the Albanian Sigurimi, Hoxha's political police and security force which formed the military-political core of the KLA. Their political leaders, such as Rexhep Qosja, favor the creation of a "Greater Albania" that includes Macedonia and part of Greece, as well as Albania and Kosovo. No amount of Clintonian word-parsing can possibly transform this thuggish alliance of Commies, fascists, and Mafioso into the Kosovar Founding Fathers – no matter how much they pay for their public relations makeover.


Clinton has opened up yet another front in the perpetual war for perpetual peace, in the historian Charles Austin Beard's famous phrase: Kosovo, at best, is another Korea – and, at worst, a dress rehearsal for the coming war with a resurgent Russia. U.S. soldiers will stand guard in the Field of the Blackbirds for generations, and perhaps some will fall there. An empire already dangerously overextended is now grotesquely distended, with commitments from Taiwan to Tuzla, and tripwires crisscrossing the globe. Far from making us stronger, this mad internationalism poses a deadly danger to the peace and security of the American people. It means endless wars, "humanitarian" and otherwise, and growing legions of enemies who will one day unite against the would-be global hegemony. As Garet Garrett, the poet laureate of the Old Right, put it in his last (and best) book, The American Story:

How now, thou American, frustrated crusader, do you know where you are?

Is it security you want? There is no security at the top of the world.

To thine own self a liberator, to the world an alarming portent, do you know where you are going from here?


Where are we going from here? Surely the Clintonians will give us a break, at least for a few months, before they concoct another "humanitarian" crusade, another pretext for military intervention on some far-flung shore? Wrong. The day negotiations with the Serbs were concluded, reports that Mad Madeleine and her fellow "humanitarians" in the US State Department had turned their sights on South America were made public. The US proposal to the Organization of American States for a multinational force to police the Western Hemisphere was met with catcalls from Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela, but the concept is being pushed hard: according to Victor Marrero, the US representative to the OAS, "We never hoped that the proposal would be approved at this session, we just wanted to put the matter on the table for discussion. But this topic is not dead." The June 9 edition of Colombia's El Tiempo newspaper described the proposal as a cooperative venture by a "group of friendly countries" linked economically and politically to intervene in the internal affairs of Latin American countries in order to "preserve democracy."


The first target of this South American version of NATO is likely to be Colombia, the seat of the powerful drug lords as well as the site of no less than two guerrilla insurrections. Colombia's El Espectador reports that the US State Department has devised a plan to contain the Colombian guerrillas by putting forces into neighboring countries, and beefing up military aid to local satraps. A key aspect of the plan is to smear the Fuerzas Armadas Revolutionarias de Colombia (FARC) and the Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional (ELN), the two Marxist factions, as "narco-guerrillas." What nerve! Here is the great patron and protector of the Kosovo Liberation Army, the biggest heroin dealer in Europe, plotting to label a pathetic ragtag "army" in the jungles of Colombia "drug lords" as a pretext for annihilating them. The linchpin of this strategy of stigmatizing the guerrillas as "narco-terrorists" is to seek extradition of alleged drug-dealing Marxists to the US for trial. But what about those other drug-dealing Marxists to whose tender mercies we have delivered Kosovo?


The Republican attempt to defund the Kosovo operation failed only because the leadership sold out at the last minute. They believed Clinton when he said he would come to Congress for authorization of the expenditures, and so the House voted – 270-155 – to remove a provision from the military appropriations bill that would have barred any tax dollars from being spent on the Kosovo adventure after September 30. Yet despite Clinton's letter to Congress conceding this point, and pledging that this new responsibility would be funded through "emergency" spending bills, and not come out of the defense budget, 144 Republicans still voted "nay" in a gesture of emphatic dissent. Whether the mission hurt military readiness in other areas was not their chief concern: anti-interventionist Republicans like Rep. Mark Souder (R-Indiana) challenged the "victory" guff of the administration's spinmeisters. "This is certainly no victory," he said in a speech on the House floor. "After eleven weeks of bombing, we have less world stability than when we started. After eleven weeks of bombing, we have a settlement that we probably could have achieved at the beginning. If this is a victory, what would a defeat look like?" The heroic Rep. Tillie Fowler, who has been consistently good and obviously well-informed on this issue, pointedly observed that "NATO forces will be defending Belgrade's sovereignty over Kosovo – a position which is directly at odds with the KLA's paramount goal of independence." This war, far from being over, is just beginning – and if the GOP puts its imprimatur on it, the party will share in Clinton's ignominy.


An Associated Press story about the reaction in Washington to the war's end [Sandra Sobrieraj, "Gloat for Clinton, sour grapes for Republicans," June 10] describes "the beginnings of a grin" on Clinton's face as he exulted in the news, and goes on to say: "Blocks away, at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Center, Defense Secretary William Cohen drank in the applause of conventioneering defense contractors and called it 'all in all, a fine morning.'" Yes, a fine morning for the war profiteers, who will do a bang-up business as a result of Operation Allied Force: feeding, clothing, outfitting, supplying, and keeping the "KFOR" (Kosovo Force) army of occupation from going mad will take the full-time efforts of an entire industry, not to mention replacing all the ordnance lost in thousands of air sorties. Certainly the "drinking" metaphor is appropriate here, conjuring as it does an image of pigs with their snouts buried deep in the public trough, sucking up tax dollars at a fantastic and ever-increasing rate.


A more unsightly couple has yet to be seen than Joschka Fischer, the ex-Commie Foreign Minister of Germany, now a leading light of the German Greens – a Teutonic albeit toned-down version of Tony Blair – and Madeleine Albright. In Germany for a meeting of the G-8 foreign ministers, Albright celebrated with her fellow "humanitarians" at a restaurant that specialized in German chocolate. Fischer turned to his dinner companion and remarked: "Well, they called this 'Madeleine's War," he said, "and you won it!" That this mad cow is being lionized as the greatest strategic mind since Metternich is more dangerous than anyone knows; for an unstable personality is bound to believe it. Most people with Napoleonic complexes are locked safely away behind the doors of America's asylums, getting the treatment they need to keep their illness in check: but when the patient is the Secretary of State of the world's only superpower, then all of us are in very big trouble.


Since March 26, at least five days a week, this War Diary has exposed the lies, mocked the pretensions, and unmasked the program and methods of the War Party. Writing it has not been an altogether unpleasant task, and I face the end of it with mixed feelings. On the one hand, I am glad that the bombing has stopped, and the suffering of the Serbian people has been lightened if not entirely lifted. On the other hand, I will miss the regularity of it, the discipline required for a five-day (and all too often six-day) weekly schedule that shaped my days and the overriding theme that formed my thoughts and my work. But the war is ended, for now – and so is the Wartime Diary. This, I am sad – and also quite glad – to say will be the last entry.


What started out as a kind of therapy, a means for me to express my anger and revulsion at the brazen hypocrisy and insufferable arrogance of the NATO-crats, ends in contemplation of the meaning of it all. What, exactly, was the point of this war?


This is a question that seemed to baffle many, not only the average American but also the antiwar movement, or at least the remnants of that movement which did not capitulate to the siren song of "humanitarian" interventionism. There was much discussion of this in the interminable antiwar coalition meetings, and I had many long conversations with some of my new friends about the causes and ultimate consequences of this war. Naturally, the Marxists point to the profit motive, and the desire to "exploit" Yugoslavia economically: for them, this war is an indictment of what they imagine to be the capitalist system. Imperialism, in their view, is monopoly capitalism at the end of its tether. There are many grave problems with this simplistic analysis, the most obvious (if not the most important) one being that the strict embargo imposed by the Allies forbids all investment in that country, and this is likely to remain the case at least as long as Slobodan Milosevic remains in power. If the evil top-hatted capitalists wanted to seize control of the Yugoslav economy, that would have been easy enough: all they had to do was invest in it. Instead, they bombed it out of existence, and now there is nothing left to "exploit." So much for the "exploitation" theory.


The clear lesson of the first European war in the post-Cold War era is that the push is on for a world government dominated by an Anglo-American alliance. Against the multi-polar model of world politics, which seemed to spring back into existence when the Berlin Wall fell, these "Atlanticists" are fighting for a mono-polar world – in effect, a world government. Americans are marching into Kosovo under the command of a British general, and in the name of a transnational agency whose authority is far removed from any elected body. An army of acronyms – NATO, OSCE, EU, UN, – has declared war on all the nations of the world, on the idea of national sovereignty itself. We have heard talk of a "New World Order" before, notably in the first Gulf War against Iraq, but in Yugoslavia and especially Kosovo and Bosnia, we are witnessing the first unveiling of the globalist project, not in theory but in practice. If you want to grasp the true significance of this war, and the world order it claims to inaugurate, recall the smoking ruins of the Serbian television station, with the bloody limbs of slaughtered journalists sticking out of the steaming rubble. Remember the pious rationalizations of the NATO-crats who exulted in the destruction of these centers of "hate speech." In the world they are preparing for us, only speech approved by the NATO-crats will be allowed on the airwaves: disrupters of the ideological peace will be bombed into submission, and force-fed CNN and MTV twenty-four hours a day. Narcotized by the international monoculture, and tyrannized by the mono-polar politics of the emerging world state, the peoples of the earth will be held in the ever-tightening grip of a global elite, centered in the West. This was the real motive behind Madeleine's War, which is why so many leftists suddenly found themselves transformed into what the Trotskyists used to call "State Department socialists." The age-old collectivist dream of a World State, of central planning on a global scale, was about to come true – and so what if the warplanes had the insignia of the NATO countries rather than the hammer-and-sickle? Symbols aren't important: what matters is power. Communism may be dead and gone, but the threat of Social Democracy has now taken its place. The Bolshevik experiment did not pan out, but the Mensheviks – Tony Blair and the Labor Party, the Clintonians, the German Social Democrats and their "Green" accomplices, the Italian Party of Democratic Socialism – have won the day in the developed countries. Now, they want to win the world. And who will stop them?


The scope of the globalists' ambitions is not limited to any particular geographical area: they are likely to strike anywhere, at any time, just to show that they can do it. This was a major reason for the Balkan war: it was, in an important sense, a demonstration of pure power, apart from any strategic, economic, or geopolitical considerations. What is happening to our world was foreseen with preternatural clarity by the poet Robinson Jeffers, whose bitter and slashing verses skewered the warmonger FDR and earned the disdain of the Popular Front cultural commissars of the war years. In "Shiva," one of his last published poems, Jeffers conjures the spirit of pure evil that animates the NATO-crats and the powers behind them:

There is a hawk that is picking the birds out of our sky.
She killed the pigeons of peace and security,
She has taken honesty and confidence from nations and men,
She is hunting the lonely heron of liberty.
She loads the arts with nonsense, she is very cunning,
Science with dreams and the state with powers to catch them at last.
Nothing will escape her at last, flying nor running.
This is the hawk that picks out the stars' eyes.
This is the only hunter that will ever catch the wild swan;
The prey she will take last is the wild white swan of the beauty of things.
Then she will be alone, pure destruction, achieved and supreme,
Empty darkness under the death-tent wings.
She will build a nest of the swan's bones and hatch a new brood,
Hang new heavens with new birds, all be renewed.


As of Monday, this corner of cyberspace will be devoted to my new column, "Behind the Headlines." Posted at least three times a week, and more often when necessary, the column will deal with world affairs from a noninterventionist perspective; naturally, I will cover events in Kosovo and the Balkans, but my purview will be necessarily much wider. Along with the new column, you will see some changes on this site as we make the transition from concentrating almost exclusively on the crisis in the Balkans to monitoring the machinations of the New World Order crowd globally. will remain your best source of information on the policy of global intervention that animates the foreign policy elites in government, academia, and the media. We will keep you informed, and up-to-date, presenting the most timely news and the best analysis from a noninterventionist perspective. No other website, or printed periodical, provides this service with any degree of regularity or reliability: as far as a central locus of anti-interventionist thought, is it. The Balkan war may – may – be over, but given the mindset of our rulers, what this means is that a new war is right around the corner. We at will continue to provide you with the one weapon that can defeat the War Party, and expose the real war criminals who need to be brought to justice: information. While we hardly have the reach of CNN and the warmongering press, we did manage to provide an alternative news source to a great number of people all over the world. We will continue to do so – and hope that you, our readers and supporters, will stay with us. The crisis is abated – but the specter of war haunts us as never before. Will Jeffers' dark vision of the warhawk triumphant become an even darker reality, or will the heron of liberty escape her talons? In the end, it is up to us.

'Til Monday, then, when I'll take you "Behind the Headlines" . . .

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