FROM PHOENIX, ARIZONA Topic: BALKAN AFFAIRS
June 6, 1999; 10:30PM EDT - DAY 75
Washington 1. Photos from the March on the Pentagon
Phoenix 2. Communist Media - Then and Now (an OpEd
Column by Bob Djurdjevic)
WASHINGTON, June 5 - As promised, we've now posted the photos from the June 5 March on the Pentagon at our Web site, click here.
2. Communist Media - Then and Now (an OpEd Column by Bob Djurdjevic)
PHOENIX, June 6 - Enclosed is an OpEd column which we have just sent to the major media in the U.S. and abroad. Thought you may be also interested...
A Political Quiz: Where Are the "Reds" Today?
COMMUNIST MEDIA - THEN AND NOW
By Bob Djurdjevic
The following are two real life stories. Everything you're about to read happened. Just as written. Please read them carefully. At the end, you will be asked to answer some multiple-choice questions intended to cleanse your mind of some communist-style info-pollution:
(A) There was a scent of linden tree blossoms in the air when tens of thousands of demonstrators marched through the streets of the nation's capital on a hot June day, stopping the traffic and shouting anti-government slogans. Appreciative passers showed their support for the protesters' cause with thumbs up signs. Tourists stopped to take pictures; cab drivers and passing cars honked their horns; street cars saluted the dissenters by ringing their bells. The police mostly kept their distance from the marchers, but were highly visible. And sometimes violent (see the photo).
One foreign tourist on the Boulevard of the Revolution asked this writer what the demonstration was about. I pointed to a huge banner, written in Serb Cyrillic, which was hanging from the top floor of the College of Engineering building. It read: "Down with Red Bourgeoisie!" Upon hearing the translation, the tourist became very frightened, and sped away toward his hotel.
The stunning show of mass dissent was the first public demonstration against the government since the end of the last war. As this writer addressed his fellow-protesters later on, he said in his speech: "We will not be cowed by police billy-sticks, nor guns! Our cause is just, and we shall persevere until the government yields to our demands."
The date was June 5. The year was 1968. The nation's capital was Belgrade. The country was Yugoslavia. The system of government was a communist dictatorship. The "last war" referenced above was World War II. The demonstrators were outraged Belgrade University students. The speaker and one of the leaders of this spontaneous student anti-government uprising was your TiM editor.
History was being made on that Wednesday, June 5, yet the Belgrade media remained mum about this event. Neither the local television, nor the radio, carried any reports about it (that we saw or heard). The following day, the capital city's establishment newspapers did not have even a single story about the event which had already buzzed the whole country - through the grapevine. Instead, as a diversion, the Belgrade media carried reports about anti-American demonstrations in Paris in which the students protested the Vietnam war.
Other major national establishment media also spiked this news story. So the students had no choice but to start publishing their own "samizdat" - daily newsletters, run off overnight on old klunker-"Gestettners" at the College of Architecture. Distribution of which in the daytime turned out to be one of the most dangerous jobs back then. The largest number of arrests occurred as student-messengers of freedom and truth, which the establishment media were trying to withhold, spread the newsletters hand-to-hand in the Belgrade streets.
By contrast, the American media, including the Washington Post, New York Times and others ran major stories about the Belgrade students' protest against Marshall Tito's communist government.
(B) There was a scent of linden tree blossoms in the air when tens of thousands of demonstrators marched through the streets of the nation's capital on a hot June day, stopping the traffic and shouting anti-government slogans. Appreciative passers showed their support for the protesters' cause with thumbs up signs. Tourists stopped to take pictures; cab drivers and passing cars honked their horns... The police kept their distance from the marchers, but were highly visible.
The stunning show of mass dissent was the first public demonstration against the government since the end of the last war. As this writer addressed his fellow-protesters (see Djurdjevic speaking at the Vietnam Memorial in Washington - above), he said in his speech: "I came to join you in your righteous protest against an American government which has become so un-American... This is a government... run by corrupt politicians, like Bill Clinton. And it is a government run against the interests of the American people."
One tourist on the Memorial Bridge was offered a pamphlet explaining what the demonstration was about. He refused it, became very frightened, and sped away toward his hotel. And he wasn't even a foreign tourist.
The date was June 5. The year was 1999. The nation's capital was Washington, DC. The country was United States of America. The system of government was supposedly a free Republic. The "last war" referenced above was Vietnam. The demonstrators were outraged American citizens. The speaker was the same as in the Belgrade story.
History was made on that Saturday, June 5, yet the Washington media remained mum about this event. Neither the local television, nor the radio stations, carried any reports about it (that we saw or heard). The following day, the capital city's establishment newspapers did not have even a single story about the event which had already buzzed the whole country - via the (Internet) grapevine. Instead, as a diversion, the Washington media carried reports about a charity jog of women against breast cancer.
Other major national establishment media, such as the New York Times, for example, also spiked the March on the Pentagon news story. So the Truth in Media and others friends of truth and liberty had no choice but to start publishing it in their own newsletters - via the Internet.
By contrast, Serb media ran major stories about the Washington protest against the Clinton government's war on Yugoslavia.
And now, here are some important questions about the caveats from the above two nearly identical stories:
1. Name the capital of the free world:
2. What are some significant differences between the story (A) and story (B)?
The TiM readers who have chosen the (f) above are being given an "F" in PoliSci, and removed from our list forthwith. They will be required to show a grade "B" or higher in a remedial PoliSci 101 class, before being able re-subscribe to TiM. As for their U.S. citizenship, we understand that may be also being suspended, and could be revoked if they do not attain the said grade after three tries.
As for all those who had chosen (a) through (e), you may now proceed to some mind cleansing questions:
3. What are some significant differences between the Yugoslav communist media 31 years ago, and the free and independent media in the U.S. today?
4. What are some significant differences between the Yugoslav communist president 31 years ago, and the U.S. president today?
5. What are some significant differences between the Yugoslav citizens 31 years ago, and the Americans citizens today?
6. Based on your answers to questions 3. through 5. above, name the richest communist country in the world with the most powerful AgitProp aparatus (AgitProp - Communist Ministry of Agitation and Propaganda) - the new Evil Empire:
Now, wipe off the tears from your George Washington's family portrait. And yours, too, if you think we still lived in a free Republic which our Founding Fathers had passed on to us.
This writer just done the same. For being an anti-communist dissident in his youth; having emigrated to a country which he thought had guaranteed its citizens life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. Only to find myself having to live under communism - again.
And have to fight it -again. And march - again. And speak out against it - again.
The game is getting old. The speaker is getting old. But the fire of truth and liberty burns in his heart as brightly as ever. And it will, forever... Until its very flame, even from the grave, scorches the enemies of truth and liberty.
It was in the service of God and country that this writer spoke out on Wednesday, June 5, 1968. It was in his service of God and country that he spoke out on Saturday, June 5, 1999.
Different countries. Different continents. Different languages. Different protesters.
Same enemy. Same speaker. Same God. Same eternal flame.
ATTRIBUTION: Bob Djurdjevic is a Phoenix-based writer and founder of the Truth in Media (www.truthinmedia.org).
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"