The Balkans

Western governments cut aid to Balkans

One millions refugees remain from 1990s wars

By Paul Mitchell, 7 April 2003

Recent reports show that the dire state of the Balkans economy is the primary reason that more than one million refugees and displaced people have still not returned to their former homes.

War crimes tribunal drops charges against Croatian general

By Keith Lee and Paul Mitchell, 26 February 2003

The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) has dropped war crime charges against the former Chief of the Croatian Army, General Janko Bobetko. Medical experts appointed by the tribunal have declared the 83-year-old Bobetko too ill to stand trial.

European Rapid Reaction Force to deploy in Macedonia

By Paul Stewart, 1 February 2003

The European Union (EU) is preparing in March to replace NATO’s Amber Fox mission in Macedonia. Javier Solano, EU foreign policy chief, has said this first military deployment of the EU Rapid Reaction Force (EURRF) will put EU-NATO relations “on a different footing.” As his remarks suggest, EU officials aim to use the mission in Macedonia to prove that Europe can and must develop a military capability independent of the United States.

Political disaffection spreads throughout the former Yugoslavia

By Paul Bond and Tony Robson, 31 January 2003

The failure of the presidential poll in Montenegro at the end of December has deepened the crisis of the political establishment in the former Yugoslavia.

The Milosevic trial

Pro-western Bosnian Serb leader given exceptional treatment

By Paul Mitchell, 16 January 2003

The favourable treatment given an indicted Bosnian Serb war criminal underscores the hypocrisy of western claims to be upholding standards of international justice at The Hague.

Anti-government strikes in Macedonia

By Paul Stuart, 19 December 2002

The Social Democratic Alliance (SDSM)-led government “Together for Macedonia,” formed in October, has been shaken by a series of strikes. An anticipated period of grace for the newly elected coalition evaporated as workers at 17 enterprises went on strike to demand the payment of back wages and the return of legislation protecting labour rights. Workers in private industry joined the strike wave, accusing managers of spending back pay to lead luxurious lifestyles.

Long-term environmental damage due to NATO bombing in Yugoslavia

By Tony Robson, 10 December 2002

The NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999 breached international humanitarian law and caused long-term environmental damage, a report by the American based research group, Institute for Energy and Environmental Research (IEER), has found.

Milosevic trial: Croatia’s President Mesic gives evidence

By Keith Lee, 1 November 2002

At the beginning of this month Croatian President Stjepan (Stipe) Mesic gave evidence against Slobodan Milosevic at The Hague war crimes tribunal. Mesic is the first head of state to testify at the tribunal. He was president of the former Yugoslavia in 1991. His presidency lasted less than a year before Yugoslavia was broken up.

Mass abstentions nullify Serbian election result

By Paul Bond and Tony Robson, 21 October 2002

Described by one observer as “an election that never was”, the failure of the Serbian presidential elections to produce a result offers a damning commentary on the record of the Western-supported coalition that has governed since the ousting of President Slobodan Milosevic.

Incoming Macedonian government pledges subservience to Western powers

By Tania Kent and Paul Stuart, 19 October 2002

On September 16, the President of Macedonia, Ljubco Georgijevski of Vmro-Dpmne, was voted out of office in a shock election result.

The Milosevic Trial: journalists warned to stop criticisms

By Paul Mitchell, 14 October 2002

Prosecution lawyers in the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic have warned journalists to stop criticising their performance and evidence. Milosevic is appearing before the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague accused of war crimes.

Serbia holds presidential elections two years after Milosevic’s fall

By Tony Robson and Paul Bond, 23 September 2002

Presidential elections are currently taking place in Serbia. Voters will go to the polls on Sunday, September 29—almost two years to the day since the downfall of the regime of Slobodan Milosevic. The Democratic Opposition of Serbia (DOS), which came to power with Western backing, still maintains the title even though it is the party of government.

The Milosevic Trial: Key prosecution witness backs deposed Yugoslav president

Officials used threats to extract testimony, ex-spy chief says

By Keith Lee and Paul Mitchell, 11 September 2002

Late July Radomir Markovic, a former Serbian spy chief, claimed he had been forced to appear as a prosecution witness in the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic. And, in a dramatic reversal for the prosecution, Markovic denied that Milosevic ethnically cleansed the ethnic Albanians in Kosova and then tried to cover up the evidence.

Kosovo: UN forces arrest former KLA commanders

By Paul Mitchell, 4 September 2002

The United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) has arrested a number of former Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) commanders, sparking violent protests in the former Yugoslav province.

European Union seeks to dampen separatist pressures in Montenegro

By Paul Bond and Chris Marsden, 22 August 2002

Barely three months after the Yugoslav parliament voted to abolish the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) and replace it with a looser union between its remaining members, the extent of Western pressure in determining the shape of the region can be clearly seen.

Bosnia: The United Nations, human trafficking and prostitution

By Tony Robson, 21 August 2002

There is mounting evidence that the United Nations has carried out a cover-up of the role played by its personnel in human trafficking and prostitution in Bosnia—a trade that has grown astronomically since the establishment of the Western protectorate seven years ago.

A reply to a supporter of the Kosovo Liberation Army

27 July 2002

The following letter was sent in response to the article The Milosevic trial: More questions raised over Racak , published May 8, 2002. by Paul Mitchell. It is followed by a reply from the author.

The Milosevic Trial: William Walker’s role as provocateur

By Keith Lee, 20 July 2002

William Walker, the former head of the Kosovo Verification Mission (KVM) for the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) insisted in his testimony to The Hague that Slobodan Milosevic had knowledge of the events in Kosovo and should be held responsible for the atrocities carried out there.

The Milosevic Trial: Key prosecution witness discredited

By Paul Mitchell, 3 July 2002

The testimony of a key prosecution witness claiming intimate knowledge of Slobodan Milosevic’s inner circle was thoroughly discredited last month. Milosevic is on trial at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague, accused of crimes against humanity.

Kosovo threatens to ignite fresh Balkan conflict

By Tony Robson, 1 July 2002

The Kosovo Provisional Assembly has passed a declaration challenging the Border Delineation Agreement signed in February 2001 and establishing an internationally recognised border between Yugoslavia and the Republic of Macedonia. This agreement came after years of negotiations between the governments in Belgrade and Skopje.

The Trepca mining complex: How Kosovo’s spoils were distributed

By Paul Stuart, 28 June 2002

In northern Kosovo, near the town of Mitrovica, sits a huge dilapidated industrial site known as the Trepca mining complex. During the 1980s, it employed 20,000 workers and accounted for 70 percent of all Yugoslavia’s mineral wealth. One economist described Trepca as a “colossal conglomerate composed of more than forty mines, foundries, and subsidiary plants—which [at its height] generated 25 percent of the entire regional industrial production and figured among the principal exporters of the ex-Yugoslavia.” According to the same study, “In the subsoil of Kosovo, one of the richest of Europe, enormous deposits are hidden of lignite, lead, zinc, non-ferric metals, gold, silver and petroleum,” on top of 17 billion tons of coal.

The Milosevic trial:

Revealing testimony by Rugova on the breakup of Yugoslavia

By Paul Mitchell, 28 May 2002

The sitting Kosovan president, Ibrahim Rugova, appeared as a prosecution witness at the International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague, where former premier Slobodan Milosevic is indicted for crimes against humanity.

The Milosevic trial: More questions raised over Racak

By Paul Mitchell, 8 May 2002

Two weapons inspectors in Kosovo have recently given evidence about events in the Yugoslav province in the six months leading up to the NATO bombardment in March 1999. British Army officers General Karol Drewienkiewicz and Colonel Richard Ciaglinski appeared as witnesses for the prosecution in the trial of former Yugoslavian president, Slobodan Milosevic, at the International Criminal Tribunal for Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague for crimes against humanity.

Camp Bondsteel and America’s plans to control Caspian oil

By Paul Stuart, 29 April 2002

Camp Bondsteel, the biggest “from scratch” foreign US military base since the Vietnam War is near completion in the Yugoslav province of Kosovo. It is located close to vital oil pipelines and energy corridors presently under construction, such as the US sponsored Trans-Balkan oil pipeline. As a result defence contractors—in particular Halliburton Oil subsidiary Brown & Root Services—are making a fortune.

Yugoslavia: Opposition grows to government collaboration with war crimes tribunal

By Tony Robson, 23 April 2002

The Belgrade government has rushed through domestic legislation allowing for closer cooperation with The Hague war crimes tribunal. This was passed only under duress, as the country, devastated by NATO bombs and a decade of economic sanctions, was threatened by a fresh embargo by the United States and the European Union.

Correspondence on the trial of Slobodan Milosevic

27 March 2002

The following correspondence was sent in response to the three part series, “The Hague Tribunal: Milosevic charges NATO with war crimes”, the first part of which was published on February 28. It includes two replies by Chris Marsden to criticisms made.

The Milosevic trial: Damning admissions by former British Liberal Party leader Lord Ashdown

By Paul Mitchell, 27 March 2002

Lord Paddy Ashdown was the first Western leader to appear as a prosecution witness in the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic. He will in all probability be the only one to do so.

Yugoslavia: Serbian Assembly restores partial autonomy to Vojvodina

By Paul Mitchell, 22 March 2002

In February, the Serbian Assembly narrowly voted for an “omnibus law” restoring partial autonomy to the province of Vojvodina. Vojvodina and Kosovo are provinces in the Republic of Serbia that together with the Republic of Montenegro comprise the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY).

Milosevic trial characterised by ineptitude and evasions

By Tony Robson, 21 March 2002

After receiving the full glare of the media spotlight, the trial of former Yugoslavian president, Slobodan Milosevic at The Hague virtually drifted off the radar screen for several days. The Chief Prosecutor’s opening statement to the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) was given wide publicity. Bite size sections of Carla Del Ponte case for the prosecution, particularly those formulations such as the one accusing Milosevic of “medieval savagery,” were given the banner headline treatment.

Correspondence on Serbian nationalism and Vojvodina

6 March 2002

The following email was sent in response to an earlier exchange on nationalism in Serbia, published on January 19, 2002. This in turn was prompted by the article: “Montenegro: European Union opposes moves towards independence” by Paul Mitchell published on January 5, 2002.

The Hague Tribunal: Milosevic charges NATO with war crimes

Part 3

By Chris Marsden, 2 March 2002

This is the conclusion of a three-part series dealing with the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic at The Hague. See Part 1 and Part 2.

The Hague Tribunal: Milosevic charges NATO with war crimes

Part 2

By Chris Marsden, 1 March 2002

This is the second of a three-part series dealing with the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic at The Hague. See Part 1 and Part 3.

The Hague Tribunal: Milosevic charges NATO with war crimes

Part 1

By Chris Marsden, 28 February 2002

This is the first of a three-part series dealing with the trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic at The Hague. See Part 2 and Part 3.

The New York Times on the Milosevic trial: a triumph of cynicism

By Barry Grey and David Walsh, 16 February 2002

The New York Times published an editorial on February 11 hailing the opening of the war crimes trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic as a “triumph for the civilized world.” The column was the latest example of a species of commentary that has come to characterize the Times’ editorial page.

Privatisation drive in Yugoslavia could provoke a "social bomb"

By Paul Mitchell, 11 February 2002

A leading Yugoslav economist has warned the Serbian government that its privatisation programme could create a “social bomb”.

Kosovo still without a functioning government

By Tony Robson, 30 January 2002

More than two months since elections were held in Kosovo for the newly created Assembly, the Yugoslav province remains without a government or president.

Yugoslavia: Union leaders order bank workers to end occupations

By Paul Mitchell, 21 January 2002

Union leaders last week ordered workers to end their weeklong occupation of several Yugoslav banks. The Institute of War and Peace Reporting has described the occupation as “the biggest social protest in the country’s history”.

An exchange on nationalism in Serbia

19 January 2002

Dear Editor,

Montenegro: European Union opposes moves towards independence

By Paul Mitchell, 5 January 2002

The European Union has warned the Montenegrin government to abandon its plans for a referendum on independence from the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY). The FRY is presently comprised of Serbia—officially including Kosovo—and the much smaller republic of Montenegro.

Elections confirm popular hostility towards Kosovo Liberation Army

By Tony Robson, 17 December 2001

The most significant feature of November’s elections for the new assembly in Kosovo is the continued failure of the political successors of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) to win any substantial support at the ballot box.

Milosevic trial: Hague Tribunal shows its partisan nature

By Tony Robson, 15 October 2001

The trial of Slobodan Milosevic being held at The Hague has been hailed as the climax of the efforts of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) to establish justice for the victims of ethnic cleansing and war crimes in the Balkans.

Serbia faces increased political and social turmoil

By Harvey Thompson, 11 October 2001

A year after the ousting of Slobodan Milosevic by the pro-Western opposition movement, the republic of Serbia is wracked by extreme social and economic tensions that have recently spilled out in a wave of industrial unrest.

Tensions deepen as NATO begins Macedonia mission

By Chris Marsden, 25 August 2001

NATO troops have begun arriving in the Macedonian capital Skopje in significant numbers, despite almost universal scepticism in the viability of their stated mission.

US-European antagonisms sharpen over Macedonia

By Richard Tyler and Chris Marsden, 22 August 2001

NATO chiefs will decide today whether to press ahead with “Operation Essential Harvest” in Macedonia. Their decision follows the visit by NATO Supreme Commander US General Joseph Ralston to determine whether, despite sporadic violence and the bombing of a monastery, the cease-fire agreed last Monday will hold. The mission will eventually involve the deployment of a 3,500-strong NATO force tasked with overseeing a weapons handover by the Albanian insurgent National Liberation Army (NLA) that has been fighting Macedonian government forces since March.

German troops to join NATO force in Macedonia

By Lena Sokoll, 13 July 2001

On July 8, German Defence Minister Rudolf Scharping (SPD—Social Democratic Party) told the press that up to 500 German soldiers would participate in a planned NATO intervention in Macedonia. The German troops would be part of a unit including French and Spanish soldiers.

Croatian government crisis over extraditions to UN tribunal

By Chris Marsden, 11 July 2001

Croatia was plunged into political turmoil following the decision of the Social Democratic Party-led government of Ivica Racan’s to cooperate with The Hague war crimes tribunal and extradite two top military personnel to face trial.

Behind the Milosevic trial: the US, Europe and the Balkan catastrophe

By Chris Marsden and Barry Grey, 4 July 2001

Whatever one’s opinion of formerYugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic—the World Socialist Web Site is decidedly not among the defenders of this former Stalinist apparatchik turned Serb nationalist and advocate of capitalist restoration—the events surrounding his capture and transfer to The Hague make a mockery of Western governments’ claims to be defending democratic rights and the rule of law in the Balkans.

Macedonia: US troops intervene to save Albanian separatists

By Richard Tyler and Chris Marsden, 28 June 2001

US forces took unilateral action on Monday to evacuate hundreds of Albanian separatist guerrillas from outside the Macedonian capital Skopje. A force of 81 American soldiers and 16 armed Humvee military vehicles escorted 20 busloads of troops belonging to the National Liberation Army (NLA), the Albanian separatist force in Macedonia, from the village of Aracinovo on the outskirts of Skopje.

Macedonia "on the brink of the abyss"

By Richard Tyler, 12 May 2001

Talks aimed at establishing a national unity government in Macedonia have stalled, with ethnic-Albanian representatives insisting on a complete ceasefire in the ongoing civil war before joining the present ruling coalition.

Montenegro split down the middle on separation

By Tony Robson, 28 April 2001

Pro-independence forces in Montenegro won the April 22 parliamentary elections by a slender majority of two percent. The ruling coalition government, led by President Milo Djukanovic's Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS), had hoped for a comprehensive victory that it could use as a mandate for staging a referendum on withdrawal from the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY). Montenegro is the only other republic that remains within a loosened federation with Serbia, following the dissolution of Yugoslavia.

Open clashes between NATO and Croat separatists in Bosnia-Hercegovina

By Chris Marsden, 11 April 2001

Demonstrations by more than 3,000 Bosnian Croats took place on Monday in Bosnia-Hercegovina in support of Croat autonomy and to protest raids by NATO's Stabilisation Force (S-For).

Milosevic's arrest dictated by the US

By Chris Marsden, 3 April 2001

The arrest of former Yugoslavian president Slobodan Milosevic during the early hours of Sunday morning reflects the extent to which the US can wield its power and influence over the entire Balkan region.

Bosnia-Herzegovina faces dissolution

By Tony Robson, 28 March 2001

Just five years after its creation, the state of Bosnia-Herzegovina (BiH) faces the prospect of dissolution. The ultra-nationalists of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) in Bosnia have declared a government of self-rule. This effectively ends the Croat-Muslim Federation and brings into question its union with the other autonomous entity within BiH, the Republika Srpska.

Western powers reject NATO intervention against Albanian insurgency in Macedonia

By Chris Marsden, 22 March 2001

The United States, the European Union and Russia are bereft of a response to the danger of yet another Balkan war being provoked by the fighting between ethnic Albanian separatists and the Macedonian government.

Fighting in Macedonia threatens wider Balkan conflict

By Chris Marsden, 16 March 2001

Fighting between ethnic Albanian separatists and the Macedonian army has intensified this week. Eight hours of skirmishes on Wednesday on the outskirts of Macedonia's second largest city Tetovo left one dead and 13 wounded. Tetovo lies more than 70 kilometres (40 miles) from the Kosovo-Macedonia border.

US forces conflict with KLA-backed Albanian separatists in Macedonia

By Chris Marsden, 10 March 2001

US and NATO forces have been involved in open clashes with ethnic Albanian separatist forces in Kosovo and the neighbouring Republic of Macedonia over the past few days. On Thursday March 8, 300 US troops crossed the border from Kosovo into Macedonia to secure the village of Tanusevci, seized the previous month by a group calling itself the National Liberation Army, which has the same initials in Albanian as the Kosovo Liberation Army (UCK).

"It Began With a Lie": German TV report refutes government propaganda in Balkan War

By Dietmar Henning, 1 March 2001

Germany's Social Democratic (SPD)-Green party coalition government employed fabrications and manipulated facts to overcome popular opposition to the participation of the German armed forces in NATO's war against Yugoslavia two years ago. A German TV report by journalists Jo Angerer and Mathias Werth entitled “It Began With a Lie” provides proof of this.

Albanian separatists continue fighting in Kosovo buffer zone

By Harvey Thompson, 14 February 2001

The past few weeks have seen a series of clashes between NATO troops and Albanian separatist forces in areas close to the border with Serbia. Fighting has occurred in both the ethnically partitioned Kosovan town of Mitrovica and across the border in Serbia in the Presevo Valley.

Forensic report throws doubt on US/NATO claims of Racak "massacre"

By Richard Tyler, 12 February 2001

A forthcoming article by three Finnish pathologists throws further doubts upon official descriptions of a “massacre” in the Kosovan village of Racak in 1999.

Further turmoil in Balkans at prospect of independence for Montenegro

By Tony Robson, 30 January 2001

Uncertainty regarding Serbia's future constitutional relationship with Montenegro is a significant hindrance to achieving stability in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY).

New Serbian regime faces major difficulties

By Chris Marsden, 5 January 2001

The Western powers have hailed the December 23 parliamentary elections in Serbia as the final vindication of the 78-day US-led NATO air war against the government of Slobodan Milosevic. The poll resulted in an overwhelming victory for the Democratic Opposition of Serbia (DOS) led by President Vojislav Kostunica.

Ceasefire declared between Serbia and Albanian separatists

By Chris Marsden, 29 November 2000

A tense standoff on the border between Serbia and Kosovo ended with the declaration of an indefinite mutual ceasefire yesterday. Earlier, the government of Vojislav Kostunica had agreed to hold off a threatened counterattack against ethnic Albanian separatist forces, while demanding that NATO intervene to end hostile penetration into the Presevo Valley.

Bosnian elections a setback for the West

By Chris Marsden, 21 November 2000

Elections in Bosnia have demonstrated the continuing dominance of nationalist and ethnic-based parties. Final results in the November 11 general election—originally expected November 17—have still not been announced. But there is every indication that they represent a significant setback for the Western powers, whose success in engineering the replacement of Slobodan Milosevic in Serbia by Vojislav Kostunica had encouraged them to believe they could secure a more compliant leadership in Bosnia.

Opposition unites with former Milosevic supporters in Serbia's new government

By Tony Robson, 14 November 2000

Over the last month, the composition of the new government of Serbia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) has been finalised. The claims made by the Western media that the downfall of President Slobodan Milosevic was the product of a popular uprising, heralding the dawn of democracy and economic prosperity are contradicted by the political reconfiguration that has taken place. Many of the influential posts in the federal government, which will determine international relations, have been handed over to the representatives of political organisations that have been procured by the Western powers. In addition, the opposition forces now in power have formed a partnership with remnants of the old regime.

After communal elections in Kosovo: new conflicts on the horizon

By Justus Leicht and Peter Schwarz, 2 November 2000

Western governments and media sources have jubilantly greeted the results of communal elections held in Kosovo last weekend. Reports emphasised the peaceful nature of the election and the high level of voter participation. Both the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the United Nations spoke of “passing the test of democratic maturity”.

Growing poverty in the Balkans

The Croatian experience belies Western promises of prosperity for Yugoslavia

By Tony Robson, 28 October 2000

Europe and America's promises to lift economic sanctions if the electorate voted Slobodan Milosevic out of office was an influential factor in gaining popular support for his removal at the beginning of this month.

How the West organised Milosevic's downfall

By Chris Marsden, 13 October 2000

The Western media uniformly portrayed the overthrow of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic as the result of a spontaneous popular democratic revolution. Overwhelming evidence to the contrary shows that this depiction of events in Belgrade as “people's power” in action was a deliberate attempt to dupe the public.

What does Milosevic's downfall portend?

By Chris Marsden, 7 October 2000

The Western political and media establishment have proclaimed the crumbling of the Milosevic regime in Yugoslavia as the “October 5th Revolution”. But only in a corrupt and reactionary political climate characterised by a near absence of critical thought could Thursday's events be universally portrayed as the “downfall of communism” and transition to democracy.

Milosevic opponents gain control of Yugoslav parliament and state TV

By Chris Marsden, 6 October 2000

Hundreds of thousands of people massed in the Serbian capital Belgrade on Thursday demanding the immediate resignation of President Slobodan Milosevic. Opposition demonstrators were attacked with tear gas outside the Federal Parliament, but burst through police lines using a bulldozer, smashing up furniture and setting the building alight.

US, Britain demand Milosevic resign after Yugoslav elections

By Chris Marsden and Tony Robson, 28 September 2000

Yugoslavia's opposition parties have rejected the result of Sunday's presidential elections announced by the ruling regime of President Slobodan Milosevic Tuesday night, that necessitate a run-off on October 10.

West steps up threats against Yugoslavia

By Tony Robson, 23 September 2000

The NATO powers have tightened their military encirclement of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) in the run-up to the presidential and federal elections on Sunday.

War crimes tribunal report shows Western powers exaggerated Kosovo victims of ethnic cleansing

By Mike Ingram, 22 August 2000

“The final number of bodies uncovered will be less than 10,000 and probably more accurately determined as between two and three thousand.” This was the conclusion reached by The Hague tribunal into war crimes in Kosovo as reported by press spokesman Paul Risley last Thursday.

UN raids Serb-run factory in Kosovo to reassert its authority

By Chris Marsden, 16 August 2000

Over 900 troops of the United Nations force in Kosovo (Kfor) launched a dawn raid Monday to shut down the Zvecan lead smelter at the Trepca metals complex just north of the town of Mitrovica.

West demands release of four accused of spying on Serbia

By Julie Hyland, 10 August 2000

The British and Canadian governments have reiterated their demands for access to four men being held in Yugoslavia, accused of espionage and planning terrorist activities.

Western powers exploit growing tensions between Serbia and Montenegro

By Tony Hyland, 29 July 2000

The Western powers have been actively fomenting the dissolution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) over the past nine years by extending diplomatic, financial and military support to secessionist forces. The resulting conflicts have twice served as a pretext for imperialist military intervention into the Balkans, transforming the region into a series of ethnically divided states, dominated economically by Western financial institutions and companies.

Letters on Amnesty International and the Kosovo War

30 June 2000

Below we post a selection of letters about the June 19 WSWS article “Amnesty International charges NATO with war crimes”

Montenegro: Elections herald further instability in the Balkans

By Tony Hyland, 23 June 2000

The results of the recent local elections in Montenegro underscore the continuing political instability within the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY). The June 11 poll produced mixed political results for both the separatist and pro-FRY coalitions.

Amnesty International charges NATO with war crimes

By Julie Hyland, 19 June 2000

The human rights organisation Amnesty International (AI) has accused the NATO alliance of committing war crimes during its bombing campaign against Yugoslavia last year. Its report, “ Collateral Damage” or Unlawful Killings? Violations of the Laws of War by NATO During Operation Allied Force, concludes that NATO violated international laws governing warfare during the campaign, resulting in the deaths of Yugoslav civilians. The NATO action, led by the United States, involved the use of long-range cruise missiles, cluster bombs and depleted uranium munitions.

What the British Foreign Affairs Select Committee on Kosovo reported

By Julie Hyland, 14 June 2000

The following article summarises some of the main findings contained in the report on NATO's war against Yugoslavia issued last week by the British parliamentary Foreign Affairs Select Committee. ( See accompanying article: “British parliamentary committee admits NATO bombing of Yugoslavia was illegal”).

British parliamentary committee admits NATO bombing of Yugoslavia was illegal

By Julie Hyland, 14 June 2000

Last week the British parliamentary Foreign Affairs Select Committee (FSC), a body with representatives from the major parties in Parliament, issued a 315-paragraph report on the lessons of NATO's war against Yugoslavia. The report makes the admission that the NATO bombardment was illegal under international law. It nevertheless argues that the war was justified on “humanitarian” grounds. (See accompanying article: “What the Foreign Affairs Select Committee on Kosovo reported”).

US psychological warfare experts worked at CNN and NPR during Kosovo War

By Tom Bishop, 18 April 2000

Cable News Network (CNN) and National Public Radio (NPR) have acknowledged that eight members of the US Army 4th Psychological Operations (PSYOPS) Group served as interns in their news divisions and other areas during the Kosovo war. PSYOPS is a highly specialized unit of the military whose personnel are trained in the production and dissemination of US government propaganda, including on television and radio programs.

A comedy of errors or a planned attack?

CIA disciplines seven officers over NATO's bombing of Chinese embassy

By Peter Symonds, 12 April 2000

Eleven months after NATO's bombing of the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade, the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has taken action against seven of its officers. One middle level officer was sacked and six others, including a senior manager, have received official reprimands—either verbally or in writing—according to a statement released last Saturday by CIA spokesman Bill Harlow. No names were released.

Provocative raid into Serbia leads to clash between US troops and civilians

By Chris Marsden, 7 April 2000

US troops engaged in pitched battles Tuesday with local Serbs in the village of Sevce. Sevce is located in Serbia proper—beyond the border of the predominantly ethnic Albanian province of Kosovo, which became a virtual NATO protectorate following the military bombardment of Serbia last year—and near the Montenegro border.

NATO admits to use of radioactive munitions in Yugoslavia

By Julie Hyland, 31 March 2000

NATO Secretary General Lord George Robertson has finally provided limited details of the Alliance's use of depleted uranium (DU) ammunition during its war against Serbia last year. Robertson disclosed the information in a letter to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan last month—four months after it was first requested.

British documentary substantiates US-KLA collusion in provoking war with Serbia

Related Sunday Times article alleges CIA role

By Chris Marsden, 16 March 2000

On Sunday, March 12, Britain's BBC2 television channel ran a documentary by Alan Little entitled "Moral Combat: NATO At War". The program contained damning evidence of how the Clinton administration set out to create a pretext for declaring war against the Milosevic regime in Serbia by sponsoring the separatist Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), then pressed this decision on its European allies. The revelations in the documentary were reinforced by an accompanying article in the Sunday Times.

KLA provocations in Mitrovica and southwest Serbia

By Chris Marsden, 10 March 2000

The Kosovan town of Mitrovica continues to be a focus of confrontations between Serbs and ethnic Albanians, but hostilities are rapidly spreading into Serbia proper. There are clear indications that the supposedly disbanded Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) is playing an instrumental role in inciting the conflict. They hope to create conditions for a renewed military offensive against Serbia and the realisation of their perspective of making Kosovo part of a Greater Albania.

NATO troops clash with Kosovan Serbs and Albanian protesters in Mitrovica

By Julie Hyland, 24 February 2000

NATO's KFOR troops confronted up to 50,000 ethnic Albanian protestors in the northern Kosovan town of Mitrovica on Monday. At one point, British, Canadian and French troops used tear gas against several hundred protestors who were attempting to storm the Ibar Bridge into the mainly Serb-inhabited north of the town. The protestors were part of a march which had set out that morning from the Kosovan capital, Pristina, demanding an end to the de facto partition of Mitrovica into Albanian and Serb enclaves.

Eyewitness account of Yugoslavia after NATO bombardment: "People are preoccupied with day-to-day survival"

By Keith Lee, 21 February 2000

Pavel Popovic works as a courier in central London. He went back to Yugoslavia in August for a month and a half to visit his relatives. The World Socialist Web Site interviewed him on the situation facing the Serbian people in the aftermath of the US-led NATO bombardment.

Cyanide spill "a catastrophe of European dimensions"

By Julie Hyland, 15 February 2000

A poisonous chemical spill has destroyed wildlife and fish stocks and threatened the water supplies of 2.5 million people in central Eastern Europe. Romania's River Somes, Hungary's River Tisza and Yugoslavia's Danube, Europe's largest waterway, have all been catastrophically polluted. The Black Sea is also expected to be affected by the spillage, which originated at the Baia Mare gold mine in northern Romania.

Human Rights Watch says NATO killed over 500 civilians in air war against Yugoslavia

By Julie Hyland, 14 February 2000

A report by Human Rights Watch (HRW) charges the NATO alliance with violating international human rights law during its 78-day war against Serbia last year. The report is the first independent investigation into the number of civilians killed by NATO air strikes on the former Yugoslavia from March through June last year.

The CARE-OSCE connection in Kosovo

New information on the case of two jailed Australian aid workers

By Mike Head, 9 February 2000

A current affairs program on the Australian government's Special Broadcasting Services television network last week shed some further light on Yugoslavia's detention of two CARE aid workers last year. Steve Pratt and Peter Wallace were arrested with two carloads of computer files, a satellite telephone and other communications equipment when they tried to cross into Croatia from Serbia last March 31—just seven days after the US-NATO bombing of the country began.

Presidential elections in Croatia go to second round

By Mike Ingram, 28 January 2000

The Croatian National Electoral Commission announced Wednesday that no candidate had secured a majority in the first round of the presidential elections. Consequently a run-off will take place on February 7 between the two highest placed candidates. Stjepan Mesic, the Croatian Peoples Party (HNS) candidate, won 41.1 percent, against 27.7 percent for Drazen Budisa of the Social Democratic Party/Croatian Social Liberal Party (SDP/HSLS) coalition.

A reply to a reader on the role of Stalinism in the former Yugoslavia

By Mike Ingram, 27 January 2000

The following is an exchange with a reader concerning the January 7 WSWS article “US hails new ruling coalition: Tudjman's ultra-nationalist party defeated in Croatian elections.”

Bosnia fours years after the Dayton Accord: US and Europe preside over ethnic partition and corruption

By Tony Hyland, 25 January 2000

“As we take stock of where we are, we see what we lack for a truly durable peace—a functioning sovereign state that unites all peoples of Bosnia and Herzegovina; an economy free from political influence and corruption that can provide jobs and stability; and the ability for all refugees and displaced persons to return to their homes.” ( From a statement by the United Nations Mission in Bosnia, the Office of the High Representative, the Mission of the Organisation of Security and Co-operation in Europe [OSCE], and NATO)

NATO accused of human rights violations in Kosovo War

By Mike Ingram, 15 January 2000

NATO's bombing of Belgrade last year has been referred to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia for legal scrutiny.

Another Kosovo lie exposed: NATO used doctored video to justify bombing of passenger train

By Ute Reissner, 8 January 2000

In the Frankfurter Rundschau of January 6 reporter Arnd Festerling documented how NATO used falsified video recordings to justify its conduct of the war in Kosovo.

US hails new ruling coalition

Tudjman's ultra-nationalist party defeated in Croatian elections

By Mike Ingram, 7 January 2000

Parliamentary elections in Croatia on Monday resulted in a victory for the centre-left coalition against the ruling Croatian Democratic Union (Hrvatske Demokratske Zajednice—HDZ).

OSCE report paints devastating picture of conditions in Kosovo

By Mike Ingram, 31 December 1999

An extensive report released earlier this month by the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) presents a chilling description of conditions in Kosovo in the aftermath of last spring's NATO bombing campaign.

Croatian President Franjo Tudjman dies

"He was a monster, but he was our monster"

By Justus Leicht and Peter Schwarz, 16 December 1999

"Tudjman almost certainly did not care that he was a monster because, unlike Milosevic, he was our monster." These are the words that the author Misha Glenny uses in his recent book to sum up the relationship between the Western powers and Croatian President Franjo Tudjman, who died in Zagreb on Saturday night.

Washington Post Online echoes official line on Chinese embassy bombing

3 December 1999

For the information of our readers, the WSWS is posting the following analysis published by "Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting" on November 30, 1999. FAIR's web site can be visited at