by Justin Raimondo
Raimondo's Wartime Diary
A SLIGHT PROBLEM
The G-8 nations, meeting in Bonn, have signed a communiqué outlining the basic conditions for a negotiated peace in Kosovo: unfortunately, neither the Kosovars nor the Serbs were invited to sit in on these deliberations a fatal error that almost guarantees the failure of this initiative. In the end, the biggest stumbling block may turn out to be the Kosovars rather than the Serbians. Not only do the Serb military and police have to hightail it out of the province, but the accord also calls for "the demilitarization of the KLA." Without weapons, the KLA would be just another band of ragged thugs, without the power to conscript recruits, extort "taxes," and terrorize their enemies: the demilitarization of the KLA would mean its dissolution, and to that its leaders will never consent. Jakup Krasniqi, a KLA spokesman, declared as much hours after the G-8 announcement, and the Albanian leadership and their Western cheerleaders are already denouncing the proposed peace plan as a sellout. A UPI story quotes one Kosovar militant as saying "Did NATO destroy Kosovo for this? They could have gotten this without the bombing."
You will note that he did not say, "Did they destroy Yugoslavia, or Belgrade, or just plain "people" the death of innocent Serbian civilians does not bother the KLA. Far from it, since in their view there are no innocent Serbs.
JUST IN TIME
On the other hand, while the KLA's position is hardening, the Yugoslavs are making substantial concessions. For the first time they agreed unconditionally to allow a United Nations team into Kosovo. The UN team will assess the situation and make plans for the return of the refugees. They will arrive in Belgrade on Sunday, just in time for NATO's daily terror bombing.
There are some indications that Slobodan Milosevic is not as eager for a deal as he is usually portrayed. In spite of being essentially abandoned by Russia and effectively isolated, the Serbian leader's first response to the G-8 proposal was acceptance of a UN peace mission armed with defensive weapons but rejection of a NATO force: "We cannot accept an occupational force, not under a NATO or UN flag," he said, although the Russian envoy is now en route to Belgrade to get him to change his mind. Instead of leading to peace, the Russian initiative may succeed only in uniting Serbia's enemies. A UN resolution may lead to a peaceful settlement but is just as likely to legitimize NATO's war of aggression, albeit retroactively, and perhaps prolong it.
WARM AND CUDDLY
Just as things were looking all warm and cuddly between the Americans and the Russians, Boris Yeltsin ad libbed a few remarks in an otherwise scripted speech to an audience of Russian writers and business leaders: "Just let Clinton, a little bit, accidentally, send a missile," Yeltsin declared. "We'll answer immediately. We don't want war in Yugoslavia. We don't want to . . . Such impudence. To unleash a war in a sovereign state without the Security Council, without the United Nations it could only be possible in a time or barbarism." This war has brought several unpleasant truths into focus, one of which is that the fate of the world is in the hands of a lying pervert and a drunken ex-Communist apparatchnik., and that a slip-up by one of them could kill us all.
Remember the Sudanese pharmaceutical plant that was supposed to be manufacturing all kinds of "weapons of mass destruction"? Last year's "terrorist" threat is today's "mistake." and the United States has now completely cleared the owner of that factory of any association with terrorist activities. The missile attack, which killed several people including the night watchman, was justified at the time as being part of a coordinated worldwide assault on the terrorist empire of Osama bin Laden. The owner of the plant, Salah Idris, a Saudi businessman, was accused at the time of being an accomplice of Bin Laden's and his bank accounts in the United States, Britain, and other countries were frozen, and his assets seized. Idris sued his bank, and the U.S. government, and hired a private security firm to investigate. Instead of answering Mr. Idris's suit, the U.S. government chose not to contest the action admitting that the missile attack was simply a wanton act of destruction, without any possible justification whatsoever.
While there can be no justification for such an act of murderous terrorism, surely there is some explanation. Unfortunately, the only one that makes sense is the scariest: that we are ruled by a man on the same moral and intellectual level as Caligula or Nero, a power-maddened psychotic whose sociopathic vindictiveness is backed up by the mightiest military machine in human history.
Raimondo's Wartime Diary
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Justin Raimondo is the editorial director of Antiwar.com. He is also the author of Reclaiming the American Right: The Lost Legacy of the Conservative Movement (with an Introduction by Patrick J. Buchanan), (1993), and Into the Bosnian Quagmire: The Case Against U.S. Intervention in the Balkans (1996). He writes frequently for Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He is the author of An Enemy of the State: The Life of Murray N. Rothbard (forthcoming from Prometheus Books).