Truth in Media Global Watch Bulletins

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May 16, 1999

Special Truth in Media Global Watch Bulletins on NATO's War on Serbia

Issue S99-80, Day 54

FROM PHOENIX, ARIZONA explosion.gif (16495 bytes)  Topic: BALKAN AFFAIRS

May 16, 1999; 0:15AM EDT - DAY 54

HEADLINES

Korisa                  1. Horror at Site of Another "Precision Blunder"

                                (new-feat.gif (128 bytes) also see new photos at our Web site new-feat.gif (128 bytes))

Brussels               2. Another Good Day at the Office, NATO Says

                                After Killing Almost 100 Albanian Civilians

Beijing                 3. Chinese Students: " Go to Yugoslavia!" (to Defend China)

Sweden                4. From Sweden with Love: Another Group of

                                Volunteers for Cause of Truth

Texas                   5. From Texas with Love: Oil for the Serbs!

Philadelphia         6. Two Dozen Kosovo Refugees Gave Fake Names; Four

                                Are Detained, Awaiting Deportation Hearings

Belgrade              7. At Least 74 NATO Aircraft Shot Down?

Boston                  8. Curtis/Hobbes: May NATO's Life "Truly Be 'nasty,

                               brutish, and Short'!"

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1. Horror at Site of Another "Precision Blunder"

KORISA, May 15 - "Horror at site of another precision blunder," is the headline of the Sunday edition of The Independent, a London daily. Reporting from Korisa (Kosovo), where NATO yesterday killed nearly 100 Albanian civilians (see S99-79, Day 53, Item 1, May 14), The Independent correspondent, Julian Manyon, witnessed the devastation following the bombing:

"The bodies had been removed, but scraps of charred flesh remained in an area littered with smashed tractors. A ghastly smell of decomposition hung above the wreckage. Mattresses, cooking pots and bundles of clothing - the personal belongings of the victims of Nato's latest blunder in the Kosovo air campaign - lay scattered all around. [...]

Two small open yards, each the size of a tennis court, face each other on either side of the highway between Prizren and Djakovica. All the ordnance fell inside the yards. A bomb-damaged sign over one of them indicated that it was a store for agricultural products."

It was here, according to the accounts of survivors. that some 600 refugees came down from their hiding place in the hills, three days before the bombing, hoping to return to their homes. Before NATO's cluster bombs started to tear them to shreds.

You can check out the latest reports by The Independent at: http://www.independent.co.uk/

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2. Another Good Day at the Office, NATO Says After Killing Almost 100 Albanian Civilians

BRUSSELS, May 15 - Meanwhile, NATO brass characterized the events on Friday (when the Korisa massacre took place) as another good day at the office. Here's an excerpt from a report by another reporter of The Independent, Robert, Fisk, filed after the NATO daily press briefing in Brussels:

"A massacre on the road to Prizren, more than 100 civilians - most of them ethnic Albanians - torn apart in the village of Korisa, stories of women and children ripped apart by NATO cluster bombs. And how did NATO kick off its three o'clock follies yesterday afternoon? Without a single word about these frightful reports, not a single bloody word of astonishment or compassion.

Instead, Jamie Shea and his Luftwaffe general droned on about NATO's successful operations over Kosovo. 'They went very well,' Major-General Walter Jertz informed us. 'It was another very effective day of operations.'

In Saigon, during the Vietnam War, they had the five o'clock follies. In the 1991 Gulf War, the Americans boasted of their military successes at the four o'clock follies. In Brussels, NATO's follies start at three o'clock. But yesterday, the Shea and Jertz show was theatre of the obscene.

All of us in the darkened Joseph Luns auditorium at NATO headquarters were holding our breath. Several journalists (the television coverage never shows this, of course) shook their heads in disbelief. There had, it seemed, been no safe passage in Kosovo. We were thinking of the first reports coming in - of NATO cluster bombs bursting amid 500 Albanian refugees, many of them children, of a massacre that would make even the Prizren-Djakovica slaughter in April small scale. We wanted to know about those who were young but would never grow.

But no, General Jertz of the Luftwaffe - or the 'German Air Force' as we are for some reason encouraged to call it here - wanted to tell us that there had been 679 NATO missions over Yugoslavia in 24 hours, that there had been attacks on oil refineries, electricity stations, and the Batajnica airfield.

Projected on to the slide screen - incredibly - were the words 'A GOOD DAY'. Then Mr Shea - the Horatio Bottomley of NATO - launched into his usual denunciations of Serb atrocities, exhuming some old pictures of alleged mass graves and some (slightly) newer ones of burnt villages. [...]

When Mr Shea was asked about the reported massacre, he would express no compassion for the dead but "promise another of his full and thorough investigations". He hoped, he added sarcastically, that the journalists bused to the village by the Serbs would "insist on their right to go around freely and do their own research" - Mr Shea is now apparently a professor of journalism as well as NATO flak - and that they would investigate "ethnic cleansing" in the nearby town of Prizren. 'You know NATO - we give the truth on these issues, every single time, the full facts.'

But it doesn't. NATO does not give 'the full facts. It lies. When I asked for NATO's reaction to the KLA appointment of one of the most notorious ethnic cleansers as its new military commander - Agim Ceku, one of the planners of Croatia's ethnic cleansing of 300,000 Serbs in Krajina - Mr Shea said he had no comment because 'NATO has no direct contact with the KLA'.

This is totally untrue. NATO liaises with the KLA, holds security and intelligence meetings with its commanders, maintains radio contact with KLA men in Kosovo. NATO officials (including J Shea Esq) regularly announce KLA operations with approval.

When I asked General Jertz if NATO was using depleted uranium munitions in Serbia, he said it had not done so for two weeks but that depleted uranium is harmless. This, too, is a lie. There is growing evidence that the dust from spent depleted uranium shells has caused an epidemic of cancers in southern Iraq and may well be a cause of Gulf War syndrome. [...]

I kept wondering what this whole farce reminded me of... It reminded me of an undertaker's office. The mock soul-searching, the old pictures, the expressions of regret. The cockney and the general were the morticians, as unable to contemplate an end to NATO's bombardment of Serbia as they were to arrest old age or find a cure for death.

Kosovo is dead. Its people are dead or dispossessed. For investigation, read autopsy. And after a while it dawned on me, as it has dawned on others attending these preposterous gatherings, that we are being prepared for the death of NATO."

You can check out the latest reports by The Independent at: http://www.independent.co.uk/

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3. Chinese Students: " Go to Yugoslavia!" (to Defend China)

BEIJING, May 15 - First it was the Russian volunteers (see Day 11, Update 1, Item 3, Apr. 3). Then some Americans and Germans wrote to TiM, saying they wanted to volunteer to go and help the Serbs in any way they could (see Day 19, Update 1, Item 3, Apr. 11 and Day 33, Update 1, Item 7, Apr. 25). Now it is the Chinese students who are saying that they are off to Yugoslavia to fight NATO, according to today's Associated Press report from Beijing.

The poster was small, but its message was not, the AP said. "We hereby propose that everyone goes to Yugoslavia; that we use the spring of our youth to protect Yugoslavia and our own country," three students wrote in posters plastered on the walls of several universities.

One of the students, Chen Li, said in an interview that NATO's air campaign in Yugoslavia was a matter of global concern. "Protecting Yugoslavia is protecting all peace-loving countries and protecting our sovereignty," he said. "Anyone who dies for their country is lucky."

In their poster, the students said China was facing its biggest military threat since Japan occupied large swaths of the country in the 1930s. "Facts prove that we and the great Yugoslavian people share the same breath and have a common fate," they wrote. "We hope the broad ranks of hot-blooded warriors will join our action."

"Go to Yugoslavia. Go to Yugoslavia," the poster read.

Chen said the students were acting on their own and their poster campaign was not instigated by the government.

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4. From Sweden with Love: Another Group of Volunteers for Cause of Truth

SWEDEN, May 15 - Even some TiM readers from Sweden, one of the world's most neutral countries alongside Switzerland, can no longer stand to watch idly the daily atrocities committed by NATO in Serbia - as a part of its "humanitarian mission." Here's an excerpt from a letter which TiM received from a group of Swedes:

"Dear, Bob! Since this last war broke out, me and my family have been truly fans of yours. We didn't had anything like your site to lean against (the) last time, when Yugoslavia (was) dissolved. I really loved that country.

From my corner of the world, NATO's (back) is really up against the wall. And when a rat comes into a situation like that, it will do anything to survive, including nuclear guns, ground troops, and whatever. The only way to dissolve the rat is to put a stake through its heart. And the heart of all rats is truly Bill Clinton.

Since I and nobody else (here) can do that, I have a proposition of what we CAN do. I would like to start a list of volunteers who can all contribute to, and help the anti-war effort. At the start of the list, you might find the folks working for you. Free of charge, of course. As long as it serves the victims of the war (= targets = us!) - the truth and the freedom of speech."

S.C., Sweden

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5. From Texas with Love: Oil for the Serbs!

TEXAS, May 14 - Just in case that a group of Swedes, the "northerners," are the only ones with a soft hear for the cause of the truth and of the Serbs, here an excerpt from a letter which TiM received from a Texan. It disproves the Yankee theories that "oil is thicker than blood;" or that "only oil runs through the Texans veins:"

"Hello Bob, I represent an American oil refinery (the company name known to TiM). And I am more than willing to make certain the Yugoslavians get the oil they need, or may need, during this Yankee Bastard and NATO fiasco/attack... I wish I had the means to get it to them for free... But I don't. This is the best I can do right now."

(Name withheld, but known to TiM), Texas

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6. Two Dozen Kosovo Refugees Gave Fake Names; Four Are Detained, Awaiting Deportation Hearings

PHILADELPHIA, May 14 - About two dozen Kosovo refugees at Fort Dix, have violated U.S. immigration law by entering the United States under assumed names, U.S. officials said on Friday, according to a Reuters news report.

As many as 25 refugees with doctored identities have been discovered among 1,755 ethnic Albanians flown to nearby McGuire Air Force Base from Macedonia. Four have been jailed at county detention centers in eastern Pennsylvania, where they are awaiting deportation hearings. They were detained after U.S. officials realized they were not the people they had claimed to be while boarding a U.S.-bound jumbo jet in Macedonia.

The growing number of cases, up from three just a few days ago, could lead the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service to revise some of its standard practices while dealing with an exodus of refugees from war-torn Yugoslavia expected to swell to 20,000 in coming weeks.

"The situation is that these people don't seem to match their documents, though we're still checking with (immigration operatives) overseas,'' said Amy Otten, INS spokeswoman at Fort Dix, a sprawling Army Reserve training facility converted into a refugee processing centre for thousands of ethnic Albanians. said.

Under standard procedure, they would be expelled from the government's generous resettlement program for refugees, relabeled as asylum seekers and remain behind bars for weeks while awaiting hearings before immigration judges with the power to deport them.

The INS quickly came under fire from the human rights watchdog Amnesty International for stripping the four ethnic Albanians of their refugee status and holding them behind bars in facilities designed for criminals.

"We're still really refining our own procedures. This is a project that we, as a nation, have never undertaken before,'' said Otten.

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TiM Ed.: In other words, the INS seems to be hinting that it may apply special procedures for Kosovo Albanians relative to all other visitors to the U.S. Funny how similar this is to the story from Australia about a sexual assault by a Kosovo refugee on an Australian immigration translator, which we reported a couple of days ago.

As if the Fort Dix case, laws were broken in Sydney. Yet both Australian and American governments seemed prepared to bend them when it comes to Kosovo Albanians. No wonder an outraged Australian TiM reader from Melbourne wrote to us in protest over Canberra's handling of the Sydney incident (see S99-77, Day 51, Update 2, Item 5, May 13).

To which we can only now add: Where was Amnesty International's outrage on behalf of the female Australian translator whose body, not only her rights, were violated? AWOL, as far as we can see. What hypocrisy!

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7. At Least 74 NATO Aircraft Shot Down?

BELGRADE, May 15 - The state-owned Belgrade daily, "Vecernje Novosti," reported today that NATO had lost 74 aircraft between Mar. 24 and May 2. The paper allegedly quoted from a NATO fax which "confirmed" its claims. (TiM has requested a copy of the fax).

According to this Belgrade "NATO source," the Yugoslav air defenses had shot down 10 NATO helicopters (included in the above total), as well as about 200 cruise missiles.

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TiM Ed.: No objective reporter, of course, would take such claims by the Milosevic-controlled media as gospel truth. Neither does TiM. But we are offering them to you, our readers, since they contain the same degree of "proof" as do the daily NATO briefings by the Washington-Brussels NATO "lie and deny" crowd.

In other words, they don't. All of them are a part of the war propaganda.

Sorry folks. There are no cheap answers to the first casualty of war. If we find some, we'll let you know. In BOLD PRINT!

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8. Curtis/Hobbes: May NATO's Life "Truly Be 'nasty, brutish, and Short'!"

BOSTON, May 14 - Reacting to a Special TiM GW Bulletin S99-77, Day 51, Update 2, Item 3, May 13), a TiM reader from Massachusetts wrote:

"'Gen. Short hopes that the distress of the Yugoslav public will undermine support for the authorities in Belgrade. 'I think no power to your refrigerator, no gas to your stove, you can't get to work because the bridge is down - the bridge on which you held your rock concerts -- and you all stood with targets on your heads. That needs to disappear at 3 o'clock in the morning.' (a quote from the TiM GW Bulletin).

The 'good' general has given us an insight into his own character, and into NATO's vision of the future of Europe. Both strongly resemble that famous quote from Thomas Hobbes (a British philosopher, 1588-1679). With this ugly undeclared war, NATO's own history now fits the first two parts of that quote. As for the third...

'God grant the third (wish), so life, like its myopic vision (and the character of one of its major leaders, this Lieutenant General) will truly be 'nasty, brutish, and Short'."

Dick Curtis, Massachusetts

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Also, check out... Truth in Media Statement on Kosovo Crisis, "Wither Dayton, Sprout New War?", "On the Brink of Madness", "Tragic Deja Vu's," "Seven U.S. Senators Suggest Ouster of Milosevic", "Biting the Hand That Feeds You", "A Balkan Affairs Potpourri", "Put the U.N. Justice on Trial", "International Justice 'Progresses' from Kidnapping to Murder", "Milosevic: 'A Riddle Wrapped in a Mystery'...", "Kosovo Lie Allowed to Stand", "New World Order's Inquisition in Bosnia", "Kosovo Heating Up""Decani Monastery Under Siege?", "Murder on Wall Street""Kosovo: 'Bosnia II', Serbia's Aztlan""What If the Shoe Were on the Other Foot?", "Green Interstate - Not Worth American Lives", "An American Hero or Actor of the Year?" (A June '95 TiM story) and/or "Clinton arme secrètement les musulmans bosniaques"

Or Djurdjevic's WASHINGTON TIMES columns: "Chinese Dragon Wagging Macedonian Tail,"  "An Ugly Double Standard in Kosovo Conflict?", "NATO's Bullyboys", "Kosovo: Why Are We Involved?", and "Ginning Up Another Crisis"

Or Djurdjevic's NEW DAWN magazine columns: "Washington's Crisis Factory,"  and "A New Iron Curtain Over Europe"