The Balkans: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow
Benjamin C. Works
Strategic Issues Research Institute
Speech Delivered at Toronto, Ontario, March 24, 2001

A speculative bubble has burst on Wall Street in recent weeks; another form of  “bubble,” a mass-delusion, is bursting in the Balkans.  We are, at last, finding that throughout the English speaking world, that the people were misled and drawn into a stampede for a crusading war, by manipulative politicians and their collaborators, eager journalists, so ambitious for a lurid story, they suspended all critical reason, their natural skepticism and any sense of proportion.  Bubbles and hysterias are not new among the races of men.  One hundred fifty years ago, in the famous study of mass hysterias, Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds; Charles Mackay, a Scottish cleric wrote:

“Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one.”

~ Charles Mackay; Preface to the 1852 Edition

We have – as individuals and together – suffered through years of “Yesterdays” as The West waged a Secular Crusade against Yugoslavia, only to find that it was not the rogue element, the threat to peace in Central Europe.  We stand here, together, Today, to commemorate the innocent dead and to invite our fellow North Americans to recover their senses, one by one. For the states and peoples of the Balkans, “Tomorrow” still remains uncertain, but it is now inescapable that the only material threat to peace is not Serbian or “Slavic” chauvinism, but, rather, an insatiable Albanian nationalist appetite for their neighbors’ lands, and their wanton propensity for violence.

Two years ago our leaders and journalists told us some lurid tales

The Serbs, we were told by our leaders and experts, were “Nazi beasts.” 

The Serbs, we were told, were racist; but we find, that 26 ethnic groups co-exist peaceably in Yugoslavia alongside the Serbs: Croats, Turks, Muslims of several varieties, and particularly the universally oppressed Roma.  Yugoslavia is the one country in Europe where the Gypsy has found equality and full civil rights.  Further, some 80,000 Albanians in Belgrade were never molested, before, during or after NATO’s war.

The Serbs, we were told, were committing genocide against the innocent Albanians of Kosovo, despite a clear record that the KLA had been attacking Serbs, Roma, Turks, Slavic Muslims and other Albanians – moderate pacifists and loyalists – for over a year.

Two years ago today, NATO, conceived and founded as a strictly defensive military alliance, was hijacked by its ambitious national leaders. Two years ago, today, NATO began an illegal war of aggression, justified in the free press as a moral crusade to punish the perceived “ethnic cleansing” and “genocide” the NATO governments and media assured us was a matter of undeniable fact.  Two years ago, NATO learned to practice unrestrained murder from the air. 

Two years ago today, the self-proclaimed “democracies” of “the West” confirmed what Plato warned of more than 2,400 years ago:  ambitious leaders of democracies are just as tyrannical and just as dangerous as any other form of despot.  The People have no defense other than their vigilance and skepticism, when political leaders begin to look for “causes” abroad, to justify their tenure in office.

Two years ago this coming June, NATO forces entered Kosovo at the end of that “famous victory” over the beastly “dictator” Slobodan Milosevic, and forensics teams fanned out, with “ace-investigative journalists” hot on their heels, ready to confirm the worst allegations made by NATO propagandists during the long air war:  there must be tens of thousands of innocent Albanian victims consigned to nameless graves by the beasts of the Yugoslav Army, Interior Police (MUP) or fantastical “paramilitaries.”

But there were few mass graves to be found, and one of the largest and worst alleged massacre sites, at the village of Suva Reka, turned out to contain the remains of 150 Serb victims who had been kidnapped and liquidated by the KLA, not by dreaded “paramilitary” butchers executing the dread commands of “the Butcher of Belgrade.”

In fact, the body count from Kosovo for all sides, from the fighting and terrorism of the year before the air war, the 78-day air war itself, and the 21-odd months of NATO occupation in Kosovo appears to be some 4,000-5,000 on all sides.  ALL SIDES; and it is clear that the KLA and NATO killed the majority of these “victims,”  the KLA through a vicious and xenophobic campaign of political and inter-ethnic terror, NATO, mostly through accidents of “collateral damage” that are intrinsic elements of its new doctrine of “stand-off bombardment” or “Nintendo Warfare.” 

Twice, convoys of innocent Albanian loyalists were slaughtered by NATO bombs dropped from 15,000 feet:  at that altitude, to an eager pilot zooming about in an F-16, or Canadian F-18, a tractor hauling a hay wagon may look like an army Two-and-a-half ton truck – a “Deuce and a half” as we call them in our NATO armies.  Well, collateral damage is excused in a just war, we are told.  But the evidence continues to show that NATO’s air war, “Operation Allied Force,” was not just, and the incidents of bombed out tractors, busses, a passenger train, marketplaces, factories, refineries, bridges and a broadcast studio, add up to a roster of unpardonable offenses against a people and to Humanity.

Two years ago today, the free press of the English-speaking world failed us all: Canadian and British papers and broadcast journalists eagerly and disingenuously jumped on the Clinton-Blair-Chretian propaganda bandwagon. Only since the war have a few journalists sobered up to the facts; in particular, may I complement the CBC with “faint praise” for recanting a lie about a certain Kosovo Albanian girl whose sister told the CBC had been brutally murdered by the evil “Serbs.”

May I also complement the men of the Canadian Army in UN service, who, over the years since the Balkan wars began, have clearly tried to set the record straight about real war crimes in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo: Matt Stopford, Rollie Keith, Scott Taylor and many others. 

This is the Product of NATO’s Concept of Security in Kosovo

I stand here, today “to speak the truth and shame the Devil,” as the Francois Rabelais urged almost five centuries ago.  I hope I succeed in some small measure.

In these two years since the war more of the housing stock has been destroyed through arson, than through the alleged ethnic cleansing or during the air war. Since the war, 1300 Serbs, Roma and other minorities have disappeared, and are feared dead. Hundreds of Albanians have also been murdered in political violence, common crimes or blood feuds.  One hundred churches and monasteries have been destroyed, many of them ancient monuments; and how many priceless relics have been looted?  Over 250,000 minorities have fled before the KLA’s campaign of ethnic cleansing by terror, executed under the noses of NATO’s military forces. Girls from eastern Europe have been kidnapped and forced into “white slavery” in Kosovo, while girls from Kosovo and Albania have been kidnapped and forced into prostitution in Western Europe. Heroin is everywhere.

Since the war, Kosovo’s Croat and Jewish communities have entirely removed themselves and have ceased to sojourn there. South of Prizren, a Turkish Battalion has to protect Slavic Muslims from attacks from Albanian Muslim and Catholic terrorists.  This is the “security” NATO waged war to establish in Kosovo: and it gets worse. 

The original purposes of government, under any written or unwritten constitution, are to establish justice, provide for the common defense, and secure domestic law and order. NATO, the UN civilian administration and a horde of Non-governmental organization personnel have failed at these purposes, and have even failed to collect the garbage or provide a reliable electrical supply.

Meanwhile, international observers have determined that the new tribunals in Kosovo, manned by Albanian justices, prosecutors and clerks, are nothing more than Kangaroo Courts.  The UN and NATO, after nearly two years, are still looking for ways to establish a credible system of justice. – Imagine if the Canadian or American government failed to establish public services after a natural calamity, such as a blizzard, flood or hurricane and took more than a week?

Some Facts about the Kosovo Liberation Army’s Wars

Right up to last week, as the KLA butchers continued to murder isolated Serbs, Roma, Turks, Gorani and other minorities, the elements in the media often referred to as “the War Party,” have continued to wage a propaganda campaign in favor of the KLA and as a means of conserving their own compromised reputations.  This campaign has been spread in the American and British media, in particular, even as the Liberation Army of Presevo, Medvedja and Bujanovac (the UCPBM) tried to mount a sideshow insurrection in the 3-mile wide demilitarized zone that insulates NATO’s forces from the threat of a sneaky “Serb” attack. But NATO officers report to me, and now to the Press, that they have never had a whisper of a problem with Yugoslavia’s military or police, either in the time of the “Butcher Milosevic” or under the administration of Vojislav Kostunica.

Those NATO officers, the men who admit their sense of shame for participating in the illegal war, also confirm that NATO found no evidence that either the Yugoslav Army or MUP police committed any atrocity before or during the NATO Air War.  May I repeat; NATO’s general staff has confirmed privately and in some public venues, that there is no evidence of any atrocities committed by the uniformed forces of Yugoslavia. Here’s how a key NATO-SHAPE staff officer described it to me last week: “The truth is that the Serb/FRY government has never been found to or even accused of organized, government-sponsored atrocities.”

As an example, they know that there was never any incineration of 700 or 1500 bodies at the lead smelters in the Trepca mine complex: that same NATO staff officer, an Air Force Lieutenant Colonel in Intelligence, confirmed that the complex was under continuous satellite surveillance.  Infra red sensors showed the boilers were never fired up during the entire air war.  “The Trepca mine (a very large non-ferrous metals facility) was under constant infra red satellite surveillance throughout the 78-day war. The refinery smelter furnaces never registered as “hot spots.”

French Forensics investigators found no evidence of DNA anywhere.  Still, just three days after George W. Bush’s Inauguration – and Bush was known to be unsympathetic to the KLA – Minnesota Public Radio recycled the atrocity allegation, complete with a couple of unsavory Serb witnesses who “admitted” to participating in the cremations.

But the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) promptly denied the allegations.  Then, Colonel Douglas MacGregor of the US Army, the man who commanded NATO’s “Joint Operations Center” which “managed” the tasking of the air war for General Wesley Clark, personally wrote MPR to rebut the story.  “We sent in a team to inspect the mines as soon as NATO troops arrived in Kosovo.  There was no evidence of any mass murder in the mines, bodies or anything else.” He confirmed to me.

In June, 1999, NATO found that there was no real campaign of “ethnic cleansing,” “slaughter” or “genocide.”  What they found was vastly less than a crisis requiring international intervention.  But the Press and politicians involved, continued to maintain the perception that there had been a genocide, in order to preserve their reputations.

In Presevo and Macedonia: The Wolves have shed their Fleeces

And what now?  In America, a new Administration is not wedded to the KLA’s racist cause.  And that may be a key reason why the pro-KLA media mounted their campaign to recycle old, debunked propaganda, while the KLA’s subsidiary groups, the UCPMB and the “National Liberation Army” in Macedonia, have launched their guerrilla-terrorist campaigns. 

The Albanian Nationalists have gone a “ridge too far,” in the Macedonian incursion. Finally the West moves to distance itself from these homicidal maniacs; at last the media turn skeptical.  We now see that the xenophobic dream of a “Greater Albania” is the true agenda of a bizarre combination of drug-dealing Mafiosi, ideological terrorists, chauvinists and an ethnic “intelligentsia”. If achieved, though, this “Greater Albania,” carved through war and diplomatic bullying would only set that Mafia astride all the key trade routes that accommodate both legitimate commerce and smuggling. That Mafia, masquerading as a nationalist government, would enjoy sovereign powers equal to that of its neighbors.

Faced with that prospect and the evidence of KLA behavior over the last two years, NATO is finally waking up to the true dangers of the situation.  But this reckless and homicidal criminal conspiracy is also at its most powerful: the KLA has spent the last two years gathering munitions, recruiting more gunmen, and training for a mountain guerrilla war that NATO is not prepared to counter.  Much misery and dying may lie ahead in coming months and years. 

It is for us, standing here, together, on this “Remembrance Day,” to solemnly pay our profound respect to the innocent who lost their lives before and during NATO’s air war. Let us also remember all the innocent who have been deprived of life, liberty and their pursuit of happiness since June 1999 and before March 24, 1999.  Let us be generous of spirit and remember innocent Albanian victims of the KLA and NATO, as well as Serbs, Gorani, Gypsies, and every other victim of what was clearly a racist conspiracy for conquest and an unjust and unwarranted international war of aggression.

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