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Analysis of the US-led Assault on Yugoslavia

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March 29, 1999

An incident waiting to happen

You might have missed this earlier this week:

"LONDON (Reuters) - President Clinton is ready to consider a full-scale
Kosovo ground war against Serb forces, sending up to 90,000 U.S. combat
troops if no peace deal emerges within three weeks, Britain's Times
newspaper reported Thursday."

Or this from today's SF Chronicle:

"Britain's defense minister, George Robertson, indicated his country was
prepared to contribute as many as 50,000 British soldiers, the official

What Clinton, Clark, Blair, and their handlers want and
what the American people will tolerate are two different
things. So how will Clinton & Co. "sell" the US public on
a full scale ground war? (Remember, this started 60+ days
ago as "limited" bombing of military-only targets for
"humanitarian" purposes.)

A technicolor incident is needed and since NATO seems intent
on its ground war option, the only question now is what form
will the incident take.

What follows is NATO's golden opportunity - and the fact that
it  was publicized by the Associated Press, the prime conduit of
NATO propaganda, is significant:

"The International Rescue Committee, a private humanitarian
organization  based in New York, announced plans Friday to
begin airdrops of food and supplies in Kosovo for hundreds of
thousands of displaced ethnic Albanians. The first missions,
scheduled for Monday, will be flown by Moldovan pilots in
private planes..."

So far so good.

"Air Force Maj. Gen. Charles Wald, a Pentagon spokesman and
F-16 pilot... said NATO will not patrol the air corridor
the humanitarian group uses, meaning the private planes
will be defenseless if the Serbs fire on them.

State Department spokesman James P. Rubin said there are
plans to inform the Yugoslav military of the humanitarian
flight schedule."

Note that Rubin says "there are plans to inform..."
By what channel does he intend to reach all the
relevant forces in time given the flights are starting
*Monday* and NATO is doing everything possible to disrupt
Yugoslav military communications?

Can you predict what's coming?

What could be more atrocious than the shooting down
of a plane on a humanitarian relief mission? What could
be firmer proof of "the evil nature of the Serbs?"

For full AP article:

The scene has been set masterfully. NATO is on record as
saying the flights are risky and they don't recommend them.
Of course, why they can't spare even *one* escort plane
to protect the food drops when they have hundreds available
to bomb civilian population centers in violation of
US law is not even brought up.

And the State Department will be able to say over
CNN footage of the burning wreckage: "We informed
Milosevic of the flight schedule."

"I think it's not a good idea, frankly, as an airman," said
... Wald... "One reason I say that is because I have zero
trust in  what (Yugoslav President Slobodan) Milosevic or his
army might try to do."

What might the Yugoslavian military do when, in the middle
of a war, they see an unknown plane flying over their territory?
Shoot it down, of course. What other option do they have?
Are they now to allow every plane that flies over their
air space free access because 60+ days into the war
a private group suddenly announces they are going to start
an undisclosed number of air drops?

There is, of course, a very simple way to safeguard the food
drops, but NATO will never suggest it: Halt all the bombing in
Kosovo and elsewhere now.

This way it will be crystal clear to the scattered forces
of the  Yugoslavian military in Kosovo that the "humanitarian"
planes are what they say they are and not more NATO craft
sent to kill them.

But clearly, given that NATO cannot even be bothered to
protect these flights, NATO's purpose is not relief.
Relief of the suffering in Kosovo and elsewhere in
Yugoslavia is simply not a NATO goal. The goal is to get
its troops in and these ill-advised flights are, potentially,
their golden key.

The timing is certainly right. The shooting down of a
relief plane would fill the headlines and simultaneously
discredit the protestors who will be showing up in droves
in Washington and San Francisco a week from today.

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