FROM PHOENIX, ARIZONA Topic: BALKAN AFFAIRS
May 31, 1999; 10:00PM EDT - DAY 69
Phoenix 1. Memorial Day Weekend Slaughter
Surdulica 2. NATO Returns to Scenes of Earlier Crimes:
11 Dead in Strike on Old Age Home, Sanatorium
New Delhi 3. Times of India Poll: 66% Consider Clinton a War
Criminal; Only 24% Think That of Milosevic
California 4. "Zdravo, Bob Djurdjevic! Ti si najbolji!!!
I Should Have Been Born in Serbia, Greece or Russia"
(By Dave Thomas)
New Zealand 5. "Not in My Name!" (By Gerard van Royen)
Arizona 6. "Every Clinton Supporter Should
Read TiM" (By Paula Maas)
Belgrade 7. Serb Black Humor - For Your Memorial Day Smile
1. Memorial Day Weekend Slaughter
PHOENIX, May 31 - Memorial Day Weekend usually brings reports of death toll on the U.S. highways. This time, however, the slaughter took place half the world away as death rained on Serb cities, highways and bridges from the skies over Serbia.
With about an hour to go before the stroke of midnight on Monday, the Serb civilian Memorial Day Weekend slaughter stood at over 100, said a TiM source at Radio Belgrade, making this the bloodiest weekend since the start of NATO's bombing on Mar. 24.
Many more are also dying as indirect victims of the NATO strikes, which knocked out electricity this evening again in Belgrade for the second day in a row. Specifically, it is the hospital patients on life-support systems and the newborn babies who cannot survive the electrically-powered medical equipment. The exact number of such casualties across Serbia is not known, but it should be added to the above death toll number.
So as we say our prayers today for the fallen American soldiers of the past wars, let us not forget to do so also for the souls of the innocent civilians killed in their beds or on the bridges by the current crop of American and other NATO pilots.
2. NATO Returns to Scenea of Earlier Crimes: 11 Dead in Strike on Old Age Home, Sanatorium
SURDULICA, May 31 - NATO returned today to the scene of an earlier crime striking an old age home and sanatorium in Surdulica, killing at least 16 people. More victims are feared dead, buried under the rubble. This was the second time the sanatorium had been hit since the NATO air strikes began on March 24.
Surdulica, about 75km (50 miles) southeast of the city of Nis near the Nis-Skopje highway, was also the scene of one of NATO's previous high-profile blunders. On April 27, 20 people, mainly women and children, were killed during an air strike intended for an army barracks. NATO later admitted that a laser-guided bomb went astray and hit a residential area, destroying scores of homes (see S99-58, Day 36, Update 1, Item 1, Apr. 28).
In Ripanj, a village below Mount Avala south of Belgrade where a huge transmitter has been crippled in previous strikes, Slavica Kostic lay dead, surrounded by the rubble of her house, the Reuters newswire reported today. Her small cat, blood dripping from its ears, crouched near her body, refusing to move. Her son Ljuba was wounded in the attack, which destroyed several surrounding houses.
Ten people were also killed in a NATO strike on a residential neighborhood in Novi Pazar, a southwestern Serbian town, some 120 miles from Belgrade.
The electrical power plant in Obrenovac, outside of Belgrade, was hit last night, causing power failures in some parts of the capital. Belgrade residents also reported hearing strong explosions from the southern and eastern suburbs of the city.
The city authorities later said three people were wounded in an attack on an empty barracks in Volga Street, in the densely populated Zvezdara district. Many buildings several blocks away had their windows shattered.
"Our whole building shook and windows and doors rattled," said a TiM source who lives in New Belgrade, several miles away from the site of last night's strike.
A woman standing outside her house spoke on the telephone, its cord stretched through a hole where her window had been, the Reuters newswire reported this morning from Belgrade.
And this evening, many parts of Belgrade were again without power, following another powerful explosion, the same source from New Belgrade reported. Which also means no water for many apartment dwellers.
"We are okay on the ground floor," our source said. "But the people who live higher up don't have any water when the electricity goes out."
"Guess this means no bread again tomorrow morning," the source added, almost as an afterthought.
"No bread? Are you serious? Why not?"
"Because most bakeries nowadays are electrically powered. The same thing happened a week ago when we were without electricity for almost three days."
Pitfalls of urban living, as we have already reported last week (see "NATO's War on Urban Life," S99-89, Day 63, Item 2, May 25).
3. Times of India Poll: 66% Consider Clinton a War Criminal; Only 24% Think That of Milosevic
NEW DELHI, May 30 - A couple of days ago, we cited a Greek poll which said that 70% of the Greeks want to see Bill Clinton charged with war crimes, and only 14% think the same should be done with Slobodan Milosevic (see S99-93, Day 67, Item 5, May 29).
Well, the latest Internet poll done this weekend at the other end of the globe (India), showed that similar sentiments are prevalent among the electorate of the world's largest democracy.
The Times of India asked its readers who should be tried for war crimes: Clinton or Milosevic. And 66% of the 5,315 respondents as of late Sunday when we checked the tally, felt that Clinton should be charged. Only 24% thought that the same fate should befall Milosevic, while 10% had no opinion.
4. "Zdravo, Bob Djurdjevic! Ti si najbolji!!! I Should Have Been Born in Serbia, Greece or Russia" (By Dave Thomas)
CALIFORNIA, May 30 - We were pleased, though a bit startled, to receive the other day a message from a TiM reader from California with an Anglo-Saxon sounding name. Startled, because Dave Thomas' message read: "Zdravo, Bob Djurdjevic! Ti si najbolji!!!" (the phrase means "Hello, Bob Djurdjevic! You're the best!!!" in Serbian).
So we replied to it in Serbian, figuring that our correspondent and supporter has learned it somewhere along the way. What follows is a cute reply from Mr. Thomas, followed by some more ominous thoughts which he shared with us about the Clinton administration:
Dave Thomas, California
5. "Not in My Name!" (By Gerard van Royen)
NEW ZEALAND, May 29 - "Not in my name," you won't bomb Yugoslavia, wrote a TiM reader from New Zealand, Gerard van Royen, this weekend, predicting some of the human carnage which NATO caused over the Memorial Day Weekend. And this New Zealander also said a lot more:
Gerard van Royen, New Zealand
TiM Ed.: "...that truth-fighters have won?" - if we may add, perhaps an unintended end to an unfinished sentence. If so, our New Zealand supporter is right. For, it is God's truth that we try to serve.
6. "Every Clinton Supporter Should Read TiM" (By Paula Maas)
ARIZONA, May 31 - The following is a message which we received from a TiM reader in Arizona, intended, it seems, mostly for the Bill Clinton supporters:
Paula Mass, Arizona
7. Serb Black Humor - For Your Memorial Day Smile
BELGRADE, May 31 - The following contribution to your Memorial Day smile comes from one of the NATO targets in the Belgrade suburb of Vozdovac:
Question: "What do you get when you cross Viktor Chernomyrdin with Bill Clinton?"
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"