Since I received no reply from Haaretz to my letter/OPINION, I decided to
post it. Best regards, and Happy New Year!!!! Stella
----- Original Message -----
The Unfinished State: <http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/1132545.html>
To the editors. I long hesitated in sending my response to The Unfinished
State of 3 December due to the length of my letter/OPINION. I hope you will
do me the courtesy of reading my letter/OPINION in its entirety. Although
my submitted letter/OPINION is long, please consider it for publication,
either all or in part as it may help to counter the many years of demonizing
the Serbian people, our ally of two world wars. The voices of the Serbian
people have been suppressed since the inception of the war in Bosnia.
Whether you publish it or not, I would appreciate your forwarding my
letter/OPINION to the author, Shlomo Avineri.
Author Stella L. Jatras
"The Unfinished State," The Other Side of the Story
by Stella L. Jatras
Since the beginning of the 1990's war in the Balkans, the Serbian people,
collectively, have been accused of (and punished for) committing some of the
worst atrocities since those of the Nazis in World War II.
Following are excerpts from a 1999 AFP report from a Newsweek edition which
quoted Nobel Peace Prize laureate Elie Wiesel, who stated: "Serbian acts in
Kosovo do not constitute genocide." Elie Wiesel further goes on to say,
"In my view, genocide is the intent and the desire to annihilate a people.
This is not the case here. As early as 1992, media coverage of the war in
Bosnia mistakenly compared Serbian 'ethnic cleansing' to the Holocaust,'
referring to comparison between the prison camps in Banja Luka to the death
camp in Auschwitz.
"The Holocaust was conceived to annihilate the last Jew on the planet. Does
anyone believe that Milosevic and his accomplices seriously planned to
exterminate all the Bosnians, all the Albanians, all the Muslims in the
world?' he [Wiesel] asked rhetorically." To the contrary, an often ignored
fact is that tens of thousands of Muslims fled from the fighting and sought
refuge in Belgrade.
The demonizing of the Serbs began in Bosnia. One example was the staged
massacre at the Markale market in Sarajevo on 5 February 1994. Yossef
Bodansky, author of Bin Laden, The Man Who Declared War on America, wrote in
his book Offensive in the Balkans, that the mortar used to bomb the Markarle
market place was designed by HizbAllah experts and then most likely dropped
from a nearby rooftop onto the crowd of shoppers. Video cameras at the ready
recorded this expertly-staged spectacle of gore, while dozens of corpses of
Bosnian Muslim troops killed in action (exchanged the day before in a 'body
swap' with the Serbs) were paraded in front of the cameras to raise the
Bodansky, most importantly, goes on to say, "This callous self-killing was
designed to shock the West especially sentimental and gullible Washington,
in order to raise the level of Western sympathy to the Bosnian Muslims and
further demonize the Serbs so that Western governments would be more
supportive of Sarajevo's forthcoming aggressive moves, and perhaps even
finally intervene military."
In violation of International Law, the NATO Charter and without the approval
of the United States Congress, NATO, at the urging of President Clinton,
bombed the sovereign nation of Yugoslavia, a nation that did not have
weapons of mass destruction, never attacked any NATO country and was never a
threat to the United States.
This was a war of images as I wrote in my commentary which was posted in
Jewish World Review on 22 August 2006, "It appears that Hezbollah has taken
a page out of the Bosnian Muslim playbook: Win the PR battle, and you win
the war. What better example of media disinformation than the Bosnian War,
where images of civilians 'slaughtered' at Sarajevo's Markale market place,
allegedly by Serb forces, were so instrumental? If it worked for the Bosnian
Muslims, why not for Hezbollah? Will Qana, Lebanon, become Israel's Markale
The 1994 letter written by Herb Brin of Heritage Southwest Jewish Press to
President Bill Clinton fell on deaf ears when he wrote, "Now, a year ago, I
went to Bosnia to see for myself what was meant by ethnic cleansing and the
rape stories attributed to the Serb armies in the field.....I learned to my
dismay that the rape story was a total concoction."
It appears that the more outrageous the accusation of atrocities committed
by Serbs, the more the people were willing to believe rumors of Serb forces
having thrown 700 bodies [Kosovo Albanians} into the Trepca mine shaft in
Kosovo. A three-man French Gendarmerie team were sent half a mile down the
mine to search for bodies. They found nothing. It was Daniel Pearl who
exposed the Trepca mine massacre as a hoax in The Wall Street Journal in
1999. No matter, the people believed and I am reminded of the quote made by
Hitler in 1939, "The great masses of people will more easily fall victims to
a big lie than to a small one."
The author, Shlomo Avineri of the 3 December commentary entitled, "The
Unfinished State," should also have reported that at one time there were
over 80,000 Serbs living in Pristina out of a population of 350,000. Today,
there are fewer than 150, mostly elderly who are too terrified of Albanian
mobs to leave their ghettos in search of food without KFOR escort. Where was
outrage shown for this ethnic cleansing of the Serbians? There was none, not
even by our Congress who where jumping up on the floor of the House at every
accusation of atrocity, alleged or manufactured, to have been committed by
Serbs. The author praises Ivory Tower Yale graduate Veton Surroi, whose
publication, Koha Ditore with his Albanian staff, is not exactly someone who
can be called impartial nor credible because of his virulent anti-Serb
Thus far, Serbian priests have been beaten and murdered, over 200 churches
have been put to torch by Albanian mobs, over 250,000 Serbs have had to flee
in addition to having been subjected to decapitation, rape and stabbing, not
to mention "Grannies" being targeted for specifically horrific deaths, such
as being drowned in bathtubs by Albanian forces (Washington Times 1999).
Even the 1999 winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, France's Medecins Sans
Frontieres (MSF) or Doctors without Borders (DWB) expelled the Greek arm of
DWB because the Greeks showed compassion by treating those injured or dying
Serbians in Yugoslavia during NATO's bombing campaign. Apparently the
Hippocratic Oath by France's Medecins Sans Frontiers stopped at the Serbian
It was the height of arrogance for the U.S. government to send VP Joseph
Biden to visit Serbia considering the egregious comment made by then Senator
Biden on the Senate floor in 1999 over NATO's attack against Serbia. Biden
declared "all Serbs should be placed in Nazi-style concentration camps."
This disgraceful display of ethnic hatred for the Serbian people by Senator
Biden should have been condemned by the entire civilized world, but was not.
Virtually no mention is made of the fact that Iran had sent in mujahedin
from all over the Muslim world to fight the Christian Serbs and with little
attention to the fact that Osama bin Laden, the world's greatest terrorist,
after having been provided a Bosnian passport in 1992 by then Bosnian
President Alija Izetbegovic, visited Bosnia and Kosovo on three different
We have jumped into bed with a bunch of narco-terrorists Kosovo Liberation
Army (KLA) cutthroats, many of whom were trained in Osama bin Laden's camps
and who have now established their own mini-terrorist camps in Kosovo. Need
I remind the readers that four of the six Fort Dix terrorists came from the
Kosovo area? Furthermore, the links of the KLA to organized crime have been
documented by Interpol and the US Congress.
According to the German Bundesnachrichtendienst (Federal Intelligence
Service,) Kosovo's Prime Minister, Hashim Thaci is one of three Kosovo
Liberation Army (KLA) kingpins who run the Albanian mafia rackets in Kosovo.
Thaci is also known for eliminating anyone who crosses his ambitions. Thaci
should be called what he really is, a terrorist who has taken over the baton
as Kosovo's prime minister from another terrorist, Agim Ceku, who, according
to Jane's Defense Weekly, was linked to two of the grisliest episodes of
brutality against Serbian civilians in the Yugoslav war. Like a chapter out
of Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein," former KLA leader, Hashim Thaci has been
implicated in the harvesting of body parts of young Serbian soldiers in
1999. It was Special Envoy to the Balkans, Robert Gelbard who said of the
KLA on BBC in 1998, "I know a terrorist when I see one, and these men are
I often marvel at how so many intelligent people could have fallen prey to
the disinformation and outright lies against our ally of two world wars so
easily. Perhaps it can easily be explained in the July 1998 The Financial
Times of London when it wrote, "Want to start a war? Better yet, want the
U.S., Britain, France, NATO, the United Nations on your side? Call in the
cameras....it lies in those magic initials CNN, NBC, BBC." It was a
brutal civil war and instead of being honest brokers, the US took the side
of the very same terrorists whom we are fighting today all over the world.
And finally, one must ask the question. "If Kosovo Albanians have been
ethnically cleansed as has been claimed, then why are they over 90% of the
population and the Serbians, who were once the majority in their Jerusalem,
fewer than 10%?"
I close with the following quotes:
"This organized anti-Serb and pro-Muslim propaganda should cause anyone
believing in democracy and free speech serious concerns. It recalls
Hitler's propaganda against the allies in World War II. Facts are twisted
and, when convenient, disregarded." - Yohanan Ramati, Director of the
Jerusalem Institute for Western Defense.
"The gigantic campaign to brainwash America by our media against the Serbian
people is just incredible, with its daily dose of one sided information and
outright lies." John Ranz, Chairman of Survivors of Buchenwald
Concentration Camp, USA.
Stella L. Jatras