Release Date: December 1, 1995
The Wisdom Fund, P. O. Box 2723, Arlington, VA 22202
Website: -- Press Contact: Enver Masud

Aggression Pays: Message Of Clinton Plan For Bosnia

The Bosnia peace agreement, brokered in private marathon sessions by the Clinton administration, raises many more questions than it answers. One thing, however, is certain: the clarion call "never again" rings hollow, aggression pays, and the future looks grim for the Bosnian Muslims.

What will the peace pact achieve that could not have been realized without the sacrifice of tens of thousands of Muslim lives. Had President Bush stood firm, the Serbs could have been stopped dead in their tracks. But there was to be no "line in the sand" for the Muslims. Mr. Bush had an election coming, the euphoria over the Gulf War was wearing thin, and the U.S. had no vital interests, like oil, in far off Bosnia. Even more importantly, the emergence of a democratic, secular state, in which Muslims are in the majority, would have undermined Western propaganda against Muslims seeking to govern themselves, rather than be led by puppet regimes subservient to the West.

Today, a number of factors have come together. The Croats and Muslim in recent months have recaptured large parts of their territories from the Serbs. This exploded Washington's nonintervention scenario that repulsing the aggressor Serbs could involve the U.S. in an open-ended Vietnam-type war. The United Nation's dismal peace keeping failure, the differences between NATO allies and the Atlantic Alliance's exposure as "a paper tiger," along with reports of large scale Serb war crimes forced the Clinton administration to say 'enough is enough' and get NATO air power to knock out Serb radar systems and weapons. Meanwhile, the international sanctions against Belgrade were hurting Serbia. President Slobodan Milosevic, now uncertain of support from the ailing Russian President Yeltsin, was forced to accept the Clinton peace accord.

Most importantly, the pressure to lift the arms embargo on the Muslims was growing. This, President Clinton, and his allies, could not permit. Finding an alternative became paramount.

The resulting Clinton plan for Bosnia, in effect, legitimizes Serb aggression. It sets aside the Bosnian constitution, and forces the multi-party, secular, parliamentary democracy of Bosnia to accept a secession of forty-nine percent of its territory to the rebel Serbs. None of this would have been necessary were it not for the fact that the U.S. led Western governments denied the Bosnian government, for so long, that most basic of human rights; the right to self defence.

Bosnia has been partitioned, like the Middle East, India, and other countries were partitioned by foreign powers. The aftereffects of those actions are felt keenly by the citizens of those countries to this day. Is Bosnia's misery over? No. Will Bosnia even continue to exist as agreed to in the treaty? Will the Muslims ultimately be left with only a city/state: Sarajevo?

Carol Off, "The Lion, the Fox, and the Eagle: A Story of Generals and Justice in Yugoslavia and Rwanda, Random House of Canada Ltd; (October 2002)

[Slobodan Milosevic went back on trial in The Hague Sept. 26, 2002. He faces charges stemming from the conflicts in Bosnia and Croatia. . . . But the truth is these same world leaders knew all along what Slobodan Milosevic was doing in the 1990s and they did little to stop him. In fact, they worked with him. . . .

The White House had the best and the earliest intelligence from Bosnia. It had Mendiluce's reports and, later, satellite photos. The State Department tried to suppress the information but pictures of the camps appeared on TV. Senior staff members of the State Department, such as John Fox, resigned in protest. . . . But U.S. President George Bush Sr. declared his country had no interests in Bosnia. The United States set the tone for the international community. . . .

Lord Owen forged a close relationship with Milosevic. He crafted a deal that would carve Bosnia up into ethnically pure cantons and give the Bosnian Serbs most of what they had taken by force. . . .

Operation Deliberate Force was quick and decisive. It was UN sanctioned and NATO led. But it was Bill Clinton and the U.S. administration that made it happen, even though it took three and a half years of war and the lives of 200,000 people.

Lord Owen was sidelined while the Americans took charge of negotiations. U.S. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke met with Slobodan Milosevic. They hammered out the Dayton Peace Accord, dividing Bosnia into ethnic enclaves.--Carol Off, Dealing with Milosevic: Milosevic defends himself saying other countries knew what he was doing," September 25, 2002]

[Western intervention, when it happened, came only after it was apparent that that the Bosnian Muslims were heading for victory. The establishment of an Islamic state deep in the heart of Europe was simply too much to bear and so the West intervened. This is not my conclusion, but USA President Bill Clinton admitted it in his autobiography.--Yvonne Ridley, Speech at EWAMY,", November 25, 2006]

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