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22.09.2018

Radovan Karadzic at The Hague

A revelation by Major-General David Fraser, who was military assistant to the UN protection force's (UNPROFOR) sector Sarajevo commander from April 1994 to May 1995, has the potential to become a Pandora's box for the West - if it was to be widely reported by the media

Major-General David Fraser
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Thanks to Nikola

 

A spectre of Bosnia's war
 
by Marcus Papadopoulos
 
A former United Nations officer made a significant disclosure during his recent testimony at the trial of former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadzic at The Hague which, perhaps not surprisingly, did not receive much - in fact, any - coverage in Western media.

Newspapers, magazines, television and radio in most parts of north America and western Europe have been resolutely pro-Muslim and anti-Serb in their coverage of the trials and tribulations of the Balkans.

But the evidence offered by the UN general, who was called, ironically, as a prosecution witness, is really quite extraordinary.

He stated on oath that, during the civil war in Bosnia, Bosnian Muslim forces fired weapons at their own civilians in Sarajevo and then blamed these atrocities on the Serbs.

The revelation by Major-General David Fraser, who was military assistant to the UN protection force's (UNPROFOR) sector Sarajevo commander from April 1994 to May 1995, has of course the potential to become a Pandora's box for the West - if it was to be widely reported by the media.

At risk is the image of the Bosnian Muslim government as an innocent and peace-loving authority - a perception fostered and propagated not only by Western governments but by Western journalists and Western PR firms - that is being brought into serious question.

Fraser's testimony would also undermine the basis for the Nato bombing of the Bosnian Serbs in 1994 and 1995.

Under cross-examination by Karadzic, Fraser said he had heard from fellow UN soldiers that the (Muslim) Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina had employed sniper detachments to target Muslim children in the Bosnian capital and to then blame these killings on the Serbian side.

"A protest was lodged against the Muslims for these types of actions," he said.

Regarding the shelling of Sarajevo, Fraser referred to an incident where the UN determined that a mortar fired against Muslim civilians in an area called Skenderija had in fact come from Muslim forces.

"It would appear that the intent of the Muslims was to incite more casualties and put blame on to the Serbs for this attack."

Fraser also recalled that a deliberate practice of Bosnian Muslim forces in Sarajevo was to employ mobile mortars adjacent to sensitive positions, such as UN installations and hospitals, and fire at Serbian positions in order to "draw a response from the Serbs."

He cited the example of how a mortar was fired from Kosevo hospital and said: "We would protest against the Muslims for firing weapons near places like hospitals or the use of mobile systems because it was trying to solicit a response not against the target itself but the collateral damage and that was unacceptable."

Turning to the infamous "sniper alley" - a stretch of 200 to 300 metres close to the Marshal Tito Barracks in central Sarajevo - Fraser said the events which occurred there "politically benefited" the Muslim side.

On the back of that statement, together with how Fraser had testified that the Serbian generals in Sarajevo were "intelligent," Karadzic asked why the upper echelons of the Serbian military would have allowed their snipers to fire on civilians along "sniper alley" when this would have benefited the Muslim side.

Fraser's response gives pause for thought.

"I would acknowledge that both the [Serbian] corps commanders demonstrated a degree of professionalism and intelligence, experience, control over their forces.

"And, that said, they did control the actions of what happened there. So I guess I'm left with a question myself - why would somebody who demonstrated command and control allow sniping in this area that would actually benefit the other side, politically, from a tactical military action? I mean, they were not dumb people."

Fraser's testimony concerning the conduct of Bosnian Muslim forces towards their own people helps to cast a dark shadow over the accepted narrative in the West concerning why Bosnia descended into civil war and the events which occurred there during the three-year conflict.

The bitter fighting which engulfed Bosnia was a result of the United States encouraging the Bosnian Muslim President Alija Izetbegovic to unilaterally declare independence, viewing the geostrategic benefits accrued for itself from this.

But Bosnia's Serb community had, as the former US secretary of state Colin Powell said, "very good reason to be worried about being in a Muslim-dominated country."

It was inconceivable that the Serbs would tolerate living in an independent, Muslim-led Bosnia and would not resist this with force.

An important factor in explaining why the Western public largely took a negative view of the Serbs during the war in Bosnia was due to how Western journalists reported the conflict.

As former UNPROFOR commander in Bosnia general Sir Michael Rose said: "The reporting and commenting of some members of the press corps in Sarajevo became close to becoming identified to the propaganda machine of the Bosnian government."

With the vast majority of Western journalists on their side, the Bosnian Muslim authorities took advantage of this by orchestrating the killing of their own people in Sarajevo and then blaming it on the Serbs, knowing that the foreign press would attribute their actions to the Serbian side.

Commenting on this, the former deputy commander-in-chief of the US European Command General Charles G Boyd said: "No seasoned observer in Sarajevo doubts for a moment that Muslim forces have found it in their interest to shell friendly targets."

What were described as Serbian atrocities were used by former US president Bill Clinton as a pretext for the Nato bombing of the Bosnian Serbs in 1994 and 1995, carried out to achieve a foothold for Washington in a strategically important part of Europe, and to prevent the Russians from attaining future influence in the region - Russia is a traditional ally of the Serbs.

Some commentators now believe that a significant reappraisal of what happened leading up to and during the Bosnian civil war is urgently needed.

The origins of modern-day US unilateralism, growing Islamic militancy today in the Balkans and the dangerous influence that the media exerts on policy-making all have their roots in the Bosnian conflict. Until that reappraisal occurs the world will continue to be a dangerous place to live in.

The Bosnian civil war, which lasted from 1992-1995, saw the worst fighting Europe had experienced since the end of the second world war.

Pitted against each other were the three main ethnic communities which made up Bosnia - the Bosnian Muslims, the Bosnian Serbs and the Bosnian Croats. The Muslim and Serb communities combined accounted for nearly three-quarters of Bosnia's population.

War crimes and ethnic cleansing were committed by all sides during the conflict.

The fighting in Bosnia was brought to a close by the Dayton Agreement signed in Dayton, Ohio, in November 1995.

 

Source

http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/news/content/view/full/97780

Thursday 18 November 2010


Rubrik: Balkan/Βαλκάνια
7.11.12
 von Marcus Papadopoulos

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