Truth in Media Global Watch Bulletins

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June 9, 1999

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

Issue S99-104, Day 78

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

June 9, 1999; 2:00PM EDT - DAY 78

HEADLINES

Washington            1. Slaughter on Mt. Pastrik: KLA Air Force - Thy

                                  Name Is NATO

Washington            2. Clinton Judge Dismisses Congressional Lawsuit

Montreal                3. Former Canadian Prime Minister Assails

                                  NATO, Canada

Belgrade                4. At a Serb Funeral: Tears for Victims of a

                                  "Regrettable Mistake"

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1. Slaughter on Mt. Pastrik: KLA Air Force - Thy Name Is NATO

WASHINGTON, June 9 - NATO officials in Brussels claim to have killed several hundred Serb-led Yugoslav troops in a single raid by a U.S. B-52 bomber that caught them massing near the Kosovo-Albania border on Monday, the Washington Post reported today.

NATO military sources said the targets of the bombing were two Yugoslav army battalions spotted assembling on a hillside in the Mt. Pastrik area, near the Albanian border. The troops were apparently gathering to try to thwart a local offensive by ethnic Albanian guerrillas seeking to establish new supply corridors to the interior of Kosovo from their border strongholds.

The B-52 was ordered to drop a heavy payload of cluster bombs on the troop concentration, estimated to number between 800 and 1,200 soldiers. Initial aerial assessments showed such massive annihilation that fewer than half the targeted troops are believed to have survived, according to alliance military sources.

"This hit must have really stunned them," a NATO official said. "There's no doubt that the Serbs suffered enormous casualties. They were absolutely pulverized." The casualty toll may have been the highest suffered by security forces in Kosovo in a single attack since NATO's air campaign against Yugoslavia began 11 weeks ago.

The sources said the B-52 bomber was diverted from its assigned target in another area and ordered to drop cluster bombs - antipersonnel munitions that are particularly effective against massed troops. The B-52 planes employed over Yugoslavia are based in Britain and can carry 500-pound Mark-82 gravity bombs as well as cluster weapons.

The recent offensive by ethnic Albanian rebels of the Kosovo Liberation Army has succeeded in flushing into the open many Yugoslav and Serbian units that were previously well dispersed and hidden in ways that had made it difficult for NATO warplanes to strike at them.

For the complete Washington Post report, check out: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/inatl/longterm/balkans/stories/nato060999.htm

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TiM Ed.: Ample evidence has emerged over the last 77 days that the KLA is a terrorist organization supplied by the West and financed in part with drug money. But before Mar. 24, just as in the case of the Bosnian Muslims during that civil war, it was lacking an air force. No longer. "KLA Air Force" - thy name is NATO. While the KLA attack the YU Army from their bases in Albania, NATO

And just think - all these Serb soldiers were killed on Day 76 of the war - after the "peace agreement" had been approved by Slobodan Milosevic and the Yugoslav parliament. And after a weekend of worldwide protests against the NATO bombing (see S99-101, Day 74, Item 1, June 5 and S99-103, Day 76-77, Item 1, June 8).

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2. Clinton Judge Dismisses Congressional Lawsuit

WASHINGTON, June 8 - A federal judge appointed to the bench by Bill Clinton in 1994 dismissed on Tuesday the lawsuit filed by a group of House members who wanted the bombing of Yugoslavia by U.S. forces to be declared illegal. The lawsuit was filed by 26 lawmakers, led by Rep. Tom Campbell, R-Calif., who alleged that President Clinton violated the War Powers Act of 1973 by authorizing military air strikes against Yugoslavia (see S99-88, Day 62, Item 2, May 24).

U.S. District Judge Paul Friedman, in his ruling granting a White House motion to dismiss the case, said "congressional reaction to the air strikes has sent distinctly mixed messages."

The judge noted that on May 20, Congress passed an emergency spending bill to help pay for U.S. military involvement in the Yugoslav conflict. "Had the four votes been consistent and against the president's position, and had he nevertheless persisted with air strikes in the face of such votes, there may well have been a constitutional impasse. But Congress has not sent such a clear, consistent message," Friedman said in his ruling.

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TiM Ed.: That a Clinton judge should rule for Clinton is hardly surprising. But a more interesting question to us seems to be who and how steered the congressional lawsuit onto his docket? For THAT's how justice was manipulated in this case.

By the way, Friedman was the judge who also ruled against Michael New in 1996, when this former U.S. soldier, who refused to wear the U.N. blue, sought to have the federal courts take up his case before the military courts had finished the appellate process.

And Friedman was the judge who refused to jail Clinton's pal, the Democratic fund-raiser, Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie, when the latter applied for a passport just one day after his court hearing on charges of federal conspiracy, obstruction of justice and witness tampering. The Justice Department claimed that Trie was planning to flee the country and should be jailed.

It is clear, therefore, that long after Clinton leaves office, a foul odor of malfeasance will permeate our government and judicial systems. Good news is that once the public looses its trust in the fairness of our courts, there will be fewer lawsuits filed, and less work, therefore, for the politicized lawyers and judges. And more violence, as people resort to other types of "out of court settlements."

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3. Former Canadian Prime Minister Assails NATO, Canada

MONTREAL, June 5 - Former Canadian prime minister, Brian Mulroney, assailed NATO's bombing of Yugoslavia and Canada's participation in it. In an interview published by Montreal's "La Presse," Mulroney said that, "we face a situation that 19 independent countries are bombarding a sovereign country and its children, who are dying every day."

Mulroney underscored that all international interventions must be approved by the United Nations, and regretted that Canada had taken part in NATO aggression on Yugoslavia and backed the Canadian opposition's demands that a vote on the issue be taken in parliament.

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4. At a Serb Funeral: Tears for Victims of a "Regrettable Mistake"

BELGRADE, June 3 ­ Last Thursday, we were told that peace was about to break out as Slobodan Milosevic caved in under NATO's pressure and yielded to Boris Yeltsin-Viktor Chernomyrdin's back-stabbing. At about the same time, a funeral was taking place in Belgrade of two children whose family will never find peace. bg5-27-1.jpg (37541 bytes)

As we've reported earlier, Dejana (4) and Stefan (7) Pavlovic were killed in their beds by NATO bombs in the Belgrade suburb of Ralja on May 27. Their parents were badly injured (see S99-92, Day 66, Item 1, May 28). Here is a moving report filed by Scott Taylor, editor of Esprit de Corps magazine, and author of Tested Mettle, who reports for Toronto Sun from the war-torn Yugoslavia:

"It was a mournful procession that wound its way through the Bezanija cemetery in suburban New Belgrade on Monday. Hundreds of grieving relatives stopped at the ceremonial fountain to wash their hands prior to leaving the burial ground.

In the Serbian Orthodox Christian religion, this custom is meant to cleanse away the sorrow, so that it may remain part of the funeral and be left behind at the cemetery.

However, with the air raid sirens wailing once again in the distance, the tear-stained faces of those exiting the ceremony showed little sign of having put their recent loss to rest.

Two young children, Stefan, aged seven, and his four-year-old sister Dejana, had been killed by a NATO bomb just three days earlier. Such a tragic loss of young life is not easily overcome, even in wartime.

Given the circumstances surrounding the deaths, this was emotionally one of the toughest assignments I’ve ever had. The Finnish journalist wept quietly throughout the proceedings and, as the father of a four-year-old myself, I admit that I lost it a little when, as they lowered Dejana’s tiny coffin, the grandmother screamed out her name with a soulful cry.

The parents of these children were not on hand for the funeral due to being hospitalized with their own injuries suffered in the same errant bomb attack.

The explosion occurred around 11 pm last Thursday, with Stefan and Diana already in bed. Neighbors say that although badly injured herself, the children's mother, Branislava, screamed hysterically for the rescue crews to dig out her 'babies.' They say Branislava had mercifully sunk into unconsciousness before they managed to dig Dejana’s badly mutilated corpse out of the smoldering rubble. It took further three hours to retrieve Stefan’s equally battered body.

The father, Vladimir Pavlovic, received burns to 60% of his body and remains in intensive care at a Belgrade hospital. Although unfit physically to attend the funeral, Vladimir is conscious and aware that his children are dead, that his wife remains in coma (she is currently on life support system), and that his home has been destroyed.

Through an interpreter, a family member said it was only two weeks earlier that Vladimir had moved his family out of Belgrade to the rural village of Ralja so they would be safe from NATO bombing. The small town of Ralja contains no industrial, let alone military targets. As has become the norm, NATO labeled the attack 'a regrettable mistake.'

While the mood at the burial was never tense, with emotions running high I was a little concerned about the crowd’s reaction should they discover I was from a NATO country participating in the air strikes. When one individual did approach me, my fears proved unfounded.

Instead of confronting or berating me, he politely thanked me for making the effort to attend the funeral. He explained that 'the people of Canada must see this. They must know what the bombing is doing'."

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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"