Truth in Media Global Watch Bulletins

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May 21, 1999

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

Issue S99-85, Day 59

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

May 21, 1999; 9:00PM EDT - DAY 59


Pristina                    1. NATO Kills 19 at a Kosovo Prison

Belgrade                  2. And Now the Swiss, Too, Get Plastered

Washington             3. NATO: Sorry, No Proof Available This Time...

Belgrade                 4. "Stop Murdering Us!" (A Serb Doctor)

London                    5. "We're Outsiders, But Serbia Is Home"

Arizona                   6. "Forgive Us, Your Holiness!"


1. NATO Kills 19 at a Kosovo Prison

PRISTINA, May 21 - One day after killing four people at a Belgrade hospital and wounding scores of others (see S99-84, Day 58, Item 1, May 20), NATO jets bombed a prison in Istok, Kosovo, for the second time in two days Friday. The bombs killed 19 people, including the deputy governor, and wounded at least 10, the Reuters news wire reported today.

Both prisoners and guards were among the casualties of the strikes, during which more than 20 missiles were fired. Istok (the word means "East" in Serbian) is some 70km (45 miles) west of Pristina.


TiM Ed.: "For the second time in two days?" In other words, it can't be another "accident," as the NATO apologists are fond of saying. What have these East (Istok) guards and prisoners done to NATO to deserve a death sentence by the West?

We know, there is no need to answer this rhetorical question. Anymore than one can explain why the innocent people at that Belgrade hospital deserved to be killed. (By the way, the fourth victim killed at the hospital on May 20 was a security guard, the New York Times reported today). Except perhaps, that all of them were also east of the west?

Confused? Normal people would be. But that's evidently the logic used in target selection by the NATO master-killer of civilians, Gen. Wesley Kanne Clark and his assistant henchmen.


2. And Now the Swiss, Too, Get Plastered

BELGRADE, May 21 - On the 58th night of NATO air strikes against Yugoslavia, four missiles also hit a fuel depot in Belgrade, and the blast shattered the windows of the Swiss ambassador's residence as he was hosting a National Day reception, the Reuters news wire also reported today.

Swedish ambassador, Mats Staffansson, whose own residence was damaged in a strike 24 hours earlier, and other guests had to hurl themselves under tables when bombs shook the building.

"At quarter past eight, we had just got to dessert when it exploded," Staffansson told Stockholm's Aftenbladet daily. "Four cruise missiles hit a fuel depot just 300 meters from the Swiss residence and an enormous pressure wave shattered a very large window in the dining room. "Myself, the Slovakian ambassador and the Vatican's ambassador immediately threw ourselves under the table to avoid flying glass," he said.


TiM Ed.: Talk about uninvited guests! First, the Swedish ambassador's residence.. Now the Swiss... Which diplomatic site will be next victim of NATO's "smart bombs?" (As it turns out, both "U"-embassies, the U.K. and U.S., come after the letter "S" in the alphabet. And their ambassador's (empty) residences are in the same neighborhood).

Wouldn't it be a show fit for a late-night comedy hour, even at this tragic time in world's history, to see Bill Clinton and Tony Blair having to apologize to each other for having bombed each other's empty embassies? It would certainly punctuate all the empty promises which they have made to the American and British electorate.


3. NATO: Sorry, No Proof Available This Time...

WASHINGTON, May 21 - When the NATO "precision-guided" bombs killed scores of ethnic Albanians in the Kosovo town of Korisa (see S99-79, Day 53, Item 1, May 15), the alliance spokesmen blamed the deaths on Yugoslav authorities, claiming they had used the refugees as "human shields" by forcing them to spend the night next to a military command post and artillery bunker.

But a week after the embarrassing mishap, NATO's military command announced that it will not release surveillance photographs and summaries of intercepted radio transmissions to back up its claim that the site was a "legitimate military target," the Washington Post reported today.

After the bombing, and contrary to the assertion of the military spokesmen in Brussels and at the Pentagon, however, the refugees said they saw no signs that the compound was being used as a local military or police command center, the Post said. Nor did they report seeing any of the artillery pieces that NATO claimed were destroyed in the attack.

A Washington Post reporter who visited the scene and talked to survivors a day after the attack also reported seeing no evidence of a recent military presence or bombed military equipment.


TiM Ed.: In other words the NATO spokespeople lied. Whoopee-do... Surprise, surprise - coming from the Washington and Brussels "lie and deny" crowd. Except that this time, even one of their own media outfits, the liberal Washington Post, has called them liars. Stopping short of calling them mass murders, of course, for the death of nearly 100 Albanian civilians at Korisa on May 14. And for thousands of other people all across Yugoslavia.

Guess we should be thankful for small mercies, especially from the liberal media.


4. "Stop Murdering Us!" (A Serb Doctor)

BELGRADE, May 21 - The following is a dramatic account sent to us by a retired Belgrade doctor, Mrs. Darinka Popovic-Skovljev, a retired gynecologist and obstetrician. No elaboration is needed:

"Since this ridiculous, murderous NATO bombing campaign came upon us, some 58 days ago, I have been trying to lead a kind of a 'normal' life, as much as possible. Yesterday, at about 8 p.m., I was on my way back from Ada Ciganlija (a popular Belgrade vacation island in the middle of the river Sava), accompanied by my three-year old granddaughter. She was piggybacking on my shoulders.

Suddenly, enormous bomb blasts threw us down on the pavement. The whole area turned into a scene from hell. Fiery blaze; ruble flying all around. And then the blasts, all over again.

I was trying to protect her, as she was in a shock. I quickly picked her up and escaped, fearing the NATO jet might return. Which is often the case.

The NATO aircraft hit the remnants of the petrol warehouse in Radnicka Street, just about time everybody was going home from Ada for a supper. Ada Ciganlija is the popular resort area in the center of Belgrade - a park and a lake, much like London's Hyde Park, or the New York's Central Park. It is a walking distance from the very center of Belgrade.

The night before the bombs destroyed a wing of the 'Dragisa Misovic' clinic, where I used to work, leaving four dead. A woman having a baby was wounded on the delivery table.

Stop murdering us! Stop the fascist bombing campaign now!

From the frontline of humanity,"

Prof. Dr. Darinka Popovic-Skokljev, a gynecologist and obstetrician (ret.)


5. "We're Outsiders, But Serbia Is Home"

LONDON, May 17 - We're outsiders, but Serbia is our home, read the message of a letter published by London's Daily Mail on May 17. Among the signatories of this emotional letter, you will find some TiM readers and contributors, too (e.g., Charles Alverson, Randall Major):

"We are British, Irish, American, Australian and Indian citizens living in Yugoslavia, wives or husbands of Serbs. We all have children, some of us grandchildren, and Yugoslavia has been our home for a number of years, several of us for more than 30.

We have all been treated with immense kindness and respect, and though we are here because we fell in love and married, we are all aware that we have come to represent our countries in the eyes of the Yugoslavs and in whatever we do.

In teaching, translating, medicine, research, the media, the theatre, aid work and/or bringing up a family and running a home, each of us has tried to reflect the best of Western and Asian culture and be a bridge between those cultures and the equally old culture of Eastern Europe.

We know we have succeeded because we all have a wide circle of Yugoslav friends, apart from the dear members of our adoptive families. Now we are shocked, pained and angry that NATO bombs are attempting to destroy a country that has become our so-much-loved home.

When hostilities started, we feared the bombs would also destroy the goodwill and friendship we have received. But this has not happened. People have been, if anything, kinder and more sympathetic. Some of us have even been offered presents by Serb friends to lessen the hurt they sense we feel at the acts being perpetrated or not condemned by our countrymen.

This is Serbia we know - where people display basic human virtues of love, honesty, fairness, friendship and genuine sympathy with their fellow men, virtues fast disappearing in other parts of the world.

No society is perfect, and we do not go into the political aspects of this situation, except to comment that truth is always the first victim of any war and an objective representation of the facts is long overdue.

What we are saying is simply: Stop the bombing of a people that have in no way deserved the fate being meted out to them. Stop ruining the economic infrastructure of a small country that has never numbered among the rich members of the world family, but which has built up what it has through hard work and perseverance.

And let our children, families, friends and all peoples of this brave land have a future. Talk - don't bomb! Give peace a chance."


Belgrade, Yugoslavia


6. "Forgive Us, Your Holiness!"

ARIZONA, May 20 - From the other side of the Atlantic, comes a similar cry for peace and compassion from a layman of the church in Arizona. The author of the letter which followed has asked us to forward it to His Holiness, Patriarch Pavle, the head of the Serbian Orthodox Christian church:

"If you ever have contact with the clergy of the Serbian Orthodox Church, could you please pass along a message for me?

I want them to know that from the first moment of the bombing I have lived in a state of deep shame and disgust with the government of my country. I feel a personal guilt that my tax dollars are being used to wage war against a nation that has not only done us no harm, but has been our ally in two world wars.

I am sorrowful beyond words, knowing that our nation has become so fat, ignorant and lazy that it cannot see beyond the propaganda that CNN vomits forth each evening.

As I write this, Christiana Amanpour, and a variety of other warmongers, are on Larry King Live, smug and self-righteous, subtly urging the American people to demand an escalation of the 'conflict.'

Since I know first hand the holiness of the Serbian Orthodox Church, I am bold enough to ask for their holy prayers and beg their forgiveness. I want to beg them, that they may beseech God to lessen the richly deserved punishment that is due to the United States of America. I want them to know also that we are protesting this criminal action, and that we are praying for all of the Serbian people.

I know you are busy, but I thought perhaps you might have an e-mail address that... has not been disrupted by our bombing. If so could you forward this for me?"

Seraphim (Frank) Patterson, Arizona


TiM Ed.: We did.

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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"