4R”Wg :m k0:1 1″..a : “Humanism,” from page 13 tion. That surely came as no surprise. Commanding General Wesley Clark at once described these consequences as “entirely predictable” an exaggeration of course; nothing in human affairs is that predictable, though ample evidence is now available revealing that the consequences were anticipated, for reasons readily understood without access to secret intelligence. One small index of the effects of “the huge air war” was offered by Robert Hayden, director of the Center for Russian and East European Studies of the University of Pittsburgh: “the casualties among Serb civilians in the first three weeks of the war are higher than all of the casualties on both sides in Kosovo in the three months that led up to this war, and yet those three months were supposed to be a humanitarian catastrophe.” True, these particular consequences are of no account in the context of the jingoist hysteria that was whipped up to demonize Serbs, reaching intriguing heights as bombing openly targeted the civilian society and hence required more fervent advocacy. By chance, at least a hint of a more credible answer to Friedman’s rhetorical question was given in the Times on the same day in a report from Ankara by Stephen Kinzer. He writes that “Turkey’s best-known human rights advocate entered prison” to serve his sentence for having “urged the state to reach a peaceful settlement with Kurdish rebels.” A few days earlier, Kinzer had indicated obliquely that there is more to the story: “Some [Kurds] say they have been oppressed under Turkish rule, but the Government insists that they are granted the same rights as other citizens.” One may ask whether this dismissal really does justice to some of the most extreme ethnic cleansing operations of the mid nineties, with tens of thousands killed, 3,500 villages destroyed, some 2.5 to 3 million refugees, and hideous atrocities that easily compare to those recorded daily in the front pages for selected enemies, reported in detail by the major human rights organizations but ignored in the U.S. press. These achievements were carried out thanks to massive military support from the United States, increasing under Clinton as the atrocities peaked including jet planes, attack helicopters, counterinsurgency equipment, and other means of terror and destruction, along with training and intelligence information for some of the worst killers. Recall that these crimes have been proceeding through the nineties within NATO itself, and under the jurisdiction of the.Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights, which continues to hand down judgments against Turkey for its U.S.supported atrocities. It took real discipline for participants and commentators “not to notice” any of this at the celebration of NATO’s fiftieth anniversary in April. The discipline was particularly impressive in light of the fact that the celebration was clouded by somber concerns over ethnic cleansing by officially-designated enemies, not by the enlightened states, which are to rededicate themselves to their traditional mission of bringing justice and freedom to the suffering people of the world, and to defend human rights, by force if necessary, under the principles of the New Humanism. These crimes, to be sure, are only one illustration of the answer given by the enlightened states to the profound question of “how we should react when bad things happen in unimportant places”: we A Pristina, Kosovo, August 4. “2 Korrik” is August 2, Cliff Pearson when Madeleine Albright visited Kosovo and stayed near here. should intervene to escalate the atrocities \(not “looking away” under a “double standard,” the common evasion when such marginalia are conducted in Kosovo, as revealed clearly by the course of events, though it is not the version refracted through the prism of ideology and doctrine. That prism does not gladly tolerate the observation that a consequence of “the huge air war” was a change from a year of the nineties, to a level that might have approached atrocities within NATO/Europe itself in the nineties, had the bombing continued. WAR IS PEACE The marching orders from Washington, however, are the usual ones: focus laser-like on the crimes of today’s official enemy, and do not allow yourself to be distracted by comparable or worse crimes that could easily be mitigated or terminated thanks to the crucial role of the enlightened states in perpetuating them, or escalating them when power interests so dictate. Let us obey the orders, then, and keep to Kosovo. A minimally serious investigation of the Kosovo Accord must review the diplomatic options of March 23, the day before “the huge air war” was launched, and compare them with the agreement reached by NATO and Serbia on June 3. Here we have to distinU.S./NATO version that frames reporting and commentary in the enlightened states. Even the most cursory look reveals that the facts and the spin differ sharply. Thus The New York Times presented the text of the Accord with an insert headed: “Two Peace Plans: How they Differ.” The two peace plans are the Rambouillet ultimatum on March 23, and the Kosovo Peace Accord of June 3. But in the real world there are three “peace plans,” two of which were on the table on March 23: the Rambouillet Agreement and the Serb National Assembly Resolutions responding to it. Let us begin with the two peace plans of March 23, asking how they differed and how they compare with the Kosovo Peace Accord of June 3, then turning briefly to what we might reasonably expect if OCTOBER 15, 1999 THE TEXAS OBSERVER 21
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