Serbia was “character-assassinated” by Western propaganda. The campaign against Serbia was for the most part a tissue of lies and biased reporting. This man, Fikret Alic, was presented to the West as a victim of Serbian brutality, a concentration camp inmate. That was a lie. The man was standing outside the barbed wire. Still, even the august BBC continues to propagate such lies with complete abandon.
BY JOHN STEPPLING // THE VOXPOP CRITIQUES
The villain du jour from the Balkans is now arrested……….what with a Quisling government in power in Serbia Radovan Krajacic is now going to stand trial at the kangaroo court at the Hague…..the ICTY. What this arrest has unleashed….and this is really the salient point, is a tsunami of historical revisionism.
Much of the left has fallen into this orgy of self-righteous blathering, with handwringing about *Serb nationalism*, etc. Let’s just be clear about a few things. The breakup of Yugoslavia began way back. After WW2 really, with Western Imperialist powers determined to stop those dirty commies wherever they might be. Tito’s Yugoslavia was tolerated because it was seen as a hedge against Stalin. Ok, well, Yugo intelligence services were under the control of Ivan Karajacic, a Croat nationalist and Ustashe sympathizer. He dictated policy that included the infamous Yugo prison at Goli Otok. After Busic was killed in Paris, Franco Tudjman took power — a man also much in sympathy with Karajacic and the Ustashe. It is important at this point to remember that German and Austrian business interests, and the Bonn government, urged Tudjman to secede — for Croatia to declare independence. A lot of money was to be made. Slovenia was encouraged, too.
The breakup of the FRY [Federal Republic of Yugoslavia] began with western business interests. The only real tension after Croatia declared independence, at least from the German side, was that US multinationals were trying to muscle in on the deals. A lot of nice coastline in Croatia, after all. The point is that the *reform* Socialist, Milosevic, a Federalist (not a Nationalist) was trying to keep it all together. But the US had now decided that since the fall of the Soviet Union, there was no good reason not to sell off Yugoslavia and create a lot of dependent client states willing to do business on the terms that guys like Cheney find acceptable. Fast forward to the bombing of Belgrade and the demonization of Serbia. One always needs a villain. The endless PR about *rape camps*, and mass executions, and stadiums full of women and children about to be murdered, or raped or whatever, have all been debunked. This includes the infamous picture of the man behind the barbed wire fence — Fidrik Alic, who it later turned out was actually standing *outside* the fenced enclosure. It was a displaced persons center anyway, and everyone was roaming around in the summer heat, mostly shirtless. But never mind, Ruder Finn, of Madison Avenue, found the image they were looking for and made it stick.
Bosnian casualty in a war in which ancient hatreds between various ethnicities came to a boiling point with a good dose of meddling by the West. Serbian casualties–although numerous as well–rarely received frontline attention in the US-led press.
The historical irony is that the Serbs were the anti-fascists during WW2, and it’s not a little strange to watch Germany and the west then project a Nazi identity onto Serbia, all the while forgetting about Croatian well documented active fascism and Nazi collaborationist past (google Jasenovic for a good and little mentioned bit of history).
And this leads us to the trial of Milosevic, a debacle for the prosecution, concluding with the convenient death of Slobo during the defense phase of the trial. Now all this bullshit can be trotted out again because the *butcher of Bosnia* is in house. The US helped create a NATO garrison state in Kosovo, run by human traffickers and heroin dealers….late of the KLA. Nacer Oric – the vile war criminal who boasted of the beheadings of Serbs, got a pass from the court. One doubts Karadzic will.
The west has refined its propaganda machine these days, and the cornerstone revolves around the word *genocide* — which is the final trump card in most discussions. And if you question such matters, whether in the Balkans or Rwanda or Sudan, you will, I guarentee it, be called a *genocide denier*.
It’s useful to have *villains* on hand to distract from imperial aggressions. Bomb wedding parties in Afganistan, destroy an entire country and civilization in Iraq, but beat the drum of genocide and Islamofascism (sic) and one tends to forget these US military crimes. Blather on about Iranian nukes, and toss in an indictment for Al Bashir in Sudan (interesting link here: http://www.myjoyonline.com/international/200807/18653.asp) and have the lap dog media bring out its assortment of talking heads….people like Bill Kristol and Fareed Zakaria, or Marlise Simmons and Ed Vuillmay, or the ever-on-hand Frank Gaffney or Charlie Krauthammer, and have them comment, in tones of righteous indignation, at the *human tragedy* in — fill in blank — but don’t ever really question Israeli aggresion, or US military actions, or covert CIA false flag operations all over the planet. Stay on message Rove advises, and so the media do. And don’t mention US prison statistics or the rise of US poverty.
Demonize Chavez, Morales, Castro, Milosevic, and Karadzic. It’s irrelevant to what degree they are guilty of what, because whatever it is, if anything, it will pale before the blood drenched ghouls in the Pentagon and US State Department. Nobody has done more good for his people than Chavez or Castro — but they loom large as poster boys for evil in the US imagination. Propaganda works. Liberals and cruise missile leftists seem drawn to the demonizing of Serbia, and I’m not sure why, maybe it’s because it was Clinton, a Democrat, who launched the viscious assault on Belgrade, but in any event one can expect CNN and FOX and whoever to obediently spew the accepted line on Karadzic and Bosnia. After all, it keeps attention away from Baghdad and Kabul and the rest of the stinking mess.—JS
Senior Editor John Steppling is founding editor of VOXPOP/ PLACEBO ART, Cyrano’s premier cinema/theater critical area. His provocative articles are reproduced in many sites across the Internet. He currently resides in Lodz, where he teaches at the Polish National Film School.