The embarrassing truth is starting to come out that the Clinton Administration lied to us about Kosovo atrocities which were supposed to justify the bombing of Yugoslavia. In five months of investigation and exhumation of the dead in Kosovo, United Nations war crimes investigators have found only 2,108 bodies.
Before the bombing, Clinton and Defense Secretary William Cohen repeatedly tossed out figures of 100,000 dead, and the State Department even claimed that up to 500,000 Kosovars were feared dead. Clinton claimed that his bombing prevented Milosevic from “deliberate, systematic efforts at ethnic cleansing and genocide.”
The chief prosecutor for the UN war crimes tribunal, Carla Del Ponte, can confirm only the 2,108 figure. That’s what she reported to the UN Security Council.
Pathologist Emilio Perez Pujol, who led a Spanish forensic team looking for bodies, found only 187, mostly in individual graves. He calculated that “the final figure of dead in Kosovo will be 2,500 at the most. This includes lots of strange deaths that can’t be blamed on anyone in particular.”
The British, who seem to be more interested in getting to the truth than Congress, are pressuring Foreign Secretary Robin Cook to answer claims that Tony Blair’s government misled the public over the scale of deaths in order to justify NATO’s bombing of Belgrade. Alice Mahon, the Labor MP who chairs the Balkans committee, said that the Kosovo deaths were tragic but did not justify the killing of Belgrade civilians by NATO’s bombing.
Lacking a constitutional or national security basis for his Yugoslav adventure, Clinton relied wholly on the humanitarian argument. That rationale has fallen apart because the numbers of Milosevic’s crimes in Kososo were so grossly inflated, the indiscriminate damage done by the Clinton/NATO bombing raids was so vast, and all the people he said he was helping are far worse off than before the bombing started.
The Clinton/NATO bombing was carried on for 78 days with total disregard for human life. The bombs killed thousands of innocent civilians and even destroyed hospitals and schools.
The Clinton/NATO bombing decimated Yugoslavia’s economic infrastructure and created an environmental nightmare. Not only are water and power systems destroyed, but the lifeline of the region, the Danube River, is polluted and largely impassable because of destroyed bridges.
Repeated air strikes on the Serbian town of Pancevo enveloped the area in clouds of black smoke and flames for ten days and unleashed tons of chemicals into the air, water and soil. The fish, produce and water are all contaminated.
What was advertised as an air war against Yugoslavia’s military capabilities was really a war directed against the Serbian people. Dropping cluster bombs from 15,000 feet and firing missiles from many miles away guaranteed “mistakes” and “collateral damage” and prove that the targets were civilian as well as military.
U.S. Air Force Commander Lt. Gen. Michael Short admitted that the goal was to break the will of the Serbs and make them so miserable that they would force Milosevic to pull out of Kosovo. Estimates of the cost to rebuild the damage range up to $100 billion, but the costs in human misery are incalculable.
The situation in Kosovo, the province Clinton was supposed to be protecting, is even worse. The danger from unexploded British and American cluster bombs and mines is at alarming levels, according to international aid agencies.
Before the bombing began, there was no humanitarian crisis in Kosovo. It was only after the U.S. and NATO air strikes began that the Serbs started to expel Albanians from Kosovo.
The NATO “peacekeeping” force in Kosovo is completely unable to restrain the revenge-seeking Albanians who are beating and murdering the Serbs (even targeting grandmothers) and burning their homes and churches. More Serb civilians have been slaughtered in Kosovo than ethnic Albanians before the bombing began.
The daily violence continues even though there are now more NATO troops in Kosovo than Serbs. According to Human Rights Watch, 164,000 Serb civilians have been driven out of Kosovo.
The Clinton-Albright policy is based on the absurd fantasy that America and NATO can force the Serbs and Albanians to live together in a multiethnic society. Neither side wants that, and the attempt to impose our will means that U.S. troops will play the costly roles of global cop and social worker indefinitely.
The only people happy about the Yugoslavia debacle are the globalists who want America to be perpetually engaged in foreign conflicts. In a speech to the Canadian Parliament, Czech leader Vaclav Havel praised the Yugoslav war as “an important precedent for the future,” saying that “state sovereignty must inevitably dissolve” and nation-states will be transformed into “civil administrative units.”
When Clinton’s National Security Adviser Sandy Berger spoke to the Council on Foreign Relations on October 21, he described Clinton’s foreign policy as grounded in the policy of “engagement.” America will now be “engaged” in Yugoslavia for the rest of our lives.