'Voices of Moral Obtuseness' or 'Voices of Immoral Bigotry'?
by Stella L. Jatras
9/29/01

Examine the following three quotes. It is as though they were written by the same pen; as though all three had received their marching orders from a higher authority.

The first quote, attributed to Charles Krauthammer, appeared in The Washington Post on 21 September, titled "Voices of Moral Obtuseness":

"Let us look at American policies. America conducted three wars in the 1990s. The Gulf War saved the Kuwaiti people from Saddam. American intervention in the Balkans saved Bosnia. And then we saved Kosovo from Serbia. What do these three military campaigns have in common? In every one we saved a Muslim people."

Does Charles Krauthammer actually believe that Bosnia has been "saved" by American intervention? Bosnia has become Islam's corridor into Europe, while it's former president Alija Izetbegovic is likely to be indicted as a war criminal by the Hague Tribunal, and Richard Holbrooke's fair-haired boy, former Bosnian ambassador to the UN, Mohammed Sacirbey, is being charged with the theft of hundreds of thousands of dollars. Over 20,000 Mujahedin, along with their weapons, still remain in Bosnia (a violation of the Dayton Peace Agreement) with the Bosnian women who were forced to marry them. Mr. Krauthammer has a strange concept of what constitutes being saved.

Krauthammer shows equally skewed thinking by claiming that America "saved Kosovo from Serbia." Kosovo is a part of Serbia. How has American intervention "saved" Kosovo from Serbia when our intervention has turned Serbia's Jerusalem over to Osama bin Laden's Islamic Kosovo Liberation Army mafia? "In every one we saved a Muslim people," said Krauthammer. Wasn't the saving of the Kuwaiti people from Saddam more a case of saving Muslims from Muslims?

Warnings

In an interview on 16 October 1995 with the Dutch publication, De Standaard, former Bosnian Serb president, Radovan Karadzic said:

"The West will not remain proud of what it has done to the Serbs. Certainly now that you are heading for serious problems with Islamic terrorists. We will no longer protect Europe against Islamic terrorism. Let them go to Europe (the Bosnian Muslims!)."

As early as 1992, a U.S. House of Representatives report by Yossef Bodansky and Vaughn Forrest (Task Force on Terrorism & Unconventional Warfare) warned of "Iran's European springboard":

"Bosnia-Herzegovina's Muslims have long been considered by the Islamist leadership in the Middle East to be ripe as a vehicle for the expansion of Islamic militancy into Europe.... Thus, Tehran and its allies are using the violence in Bosnia-Herzegovina as a springboard for the launching of a jihad in Europe."

It is apparent that there was a gross lack of attention by members of the House of Representatives given to this excellent prognosis of Bosnia's future.

A strong indictment of US commitment to arm the Muslims of Bosnia can be found in a 1997 report by the US Senate Republican Policy Committee titled, "Clinton-Approved Iranian Arms Transfers Help Turn Bosnia into Militant Islamic Base."

BBC News of 22 June, 2001 titled, "Deceiving your allies," reported, "The Bosnian Muslim army was covertly supplied with arms by the US during the 1990s."

As a career military officer's wife, Stella Jatras has traveled widely and has lived in many foreign countries where she not only learned about other cultures but also became very knowledgeable regarding world affairs and world politics. Stella Jatras lived in Moscow for two years (where her husband, George, was the Senior Air Attaché), and while there, worked in the Political Section of the US Embassy. Stella has also lived in Germany, Greece and Saudi Arabia. Her travels took her to over twenty countries.

Previous article by Stella Jatras on Antiwar.com

The Media's War Against the Serbs
1/15/01

If It's Good Enough for Serbia's Goose, Why Not for Croatia's Gander?
12/7/00

Srebrenica" Code Word to Silence Critics of US Policy in the Balkans
7/31/00

From Camp Swampy to Camp Bondsteell
4/6/00

Open Letter to General Michael Short
11/3/99

Although there were many other such official and unofficial reports during the time of alleged US impartiality, American involvement in arming the Bosnian Muslims went virtually unchallenged.

History

To understand what is happening in the Balkans today requires some knowledge of Balkan history, which seems to be lacking in so many of our pundits. In a single day in 1389, 77,000 Serbs died on the battle fields of Kosovo in an unsuccessful attempt to stop the onslaught of the Ottoman Empire into Europe. By their sacrifice, and the decades of resistance to the Islamic invasion, the Serbs enabled Europe to stop the Turks at the gates of Vienna -- even though the Serbs had to endure 500 years of domination under the Islamic yoke.

It was during those years that Serbs, ethnically cleansed from Kosovo were settled in the area of Krajina, the southern border of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, to serve as a buffer between the Christian West and Islam. How ironic that in 1995, with US military aid and technology, Croatian forces brutally ethnically cleansed over 650,000 Serbs from Croatia, including 250,000 from those ancestral lands in the Krajina.

Echoes of Krauthammer

In an almost identical quote to that of Krauthammer's, US Ambassador to Singapore, Franklin Lavin noted that US troops have protected Muslims three times since the end of the Cold War, when they liberated Kuwait, stopped ethnic cleansing in Kosovo and provided peacekeepers in Bosnia. "America has used force only three times since the end of the Cold War," Lavin said. "In each instance, American servicemen put their lives at risk to save Muslims" (Associated Press, 23 Sep 2001).

The most blatantly bigoted quote comes from Congressman Brad Sherman of California, (US Congressional Record of 21 September 2001):

"Let us remember that America is not anti-Muslim and not anti-Islam. In fact, the last three military engagements of the United States were for the purpose of defending Muslim people. We restored the independence of Kuwait. We then went on to save the Bosnian Muslims from genocide. And then we bombed a Christian [emphasis added] country, Serbia, because of what Serbia tried to do to its Albanian Muslim minority. And now American and NATO troops are engaged in Macedonia for the purpose of achieving a just result for the Albanian Muslims who are a minority in that country."

Sherman's crowing over having bombed a Christian country was offensive enough, but let us be more specific: what he actually meant was, "We bombed an Orthodox Christian country, Serbia." Nor should it be forgotten that President William Jefferson Clinton continued to bomb Yugoslavia over the holy days of Eastern Orthodox Easter but halted the bombing of Iraq during Ramadan out of respect for Islam.

Both the Clinton administration and the previous Bush (89-93) administration had to prove that they were not anti-Muslim, beginning with former Acting Secretary of State, Lawrence Eagleburger, who made it clear that a US goal in Bosnia was to placate the Muslim world. Eagleburger characterized the US government's pro-Muslim position in Bosnia as a counter to the Muslim world's perception of an anti-Muslim position regarding Iraq -- and if we had to destroy a small Orthodox Christian nation in the process, it was a small price to pay.

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