Croatian Viewpoint
Print This Page

Civilians Under Fire

The bipartisan reaction to 'school shootings' and '911' in America was immediate; but in contrast, Serbian terrorism in Croatia was responded to in slow motion by world governments. It was too late for two million refugees and victims, and as if to rub salt into their wounds, the innocent are now indicted at an ad hoc International Criminal Court where justice has been compromised.
At the ad hoc court for the former Yugoslavia the traditional legal process which includes intention, premeditation and evidence has been replaced by new concepts of 'equal guilt' 'moral equivalency' or 'ethnic cleansing'. In other words at the International Criminal Court the instinctive self-defence of civilians in Croatia is being put on trial. In America this would be unthinkable, but at the Hague no shock is invoked by such a scene because of propaganda.
In fact most civilian deaths do not occur in America, but in world 'hot spots'. In America the tragic mass shootings in schools are still the exception, and that is why such scenes invoke shock. The real threat is that terrorist dictatorships out of control pose a bigger danger to the west than the right of citizens to bear arms.
Why do I bother to repeat myself, week after week, month after month, year after year. There are few who would be more sensitive to the issue of gun control and the 'permanent war' theory than I am. Bomb was one of my first words. In Canada my father was the assistant financial director for munitions supply to Europe in WWII. He negotiated contracts with Crown companies and signed the cheques. My mother worked in the same office.
It is only natural that I question the sinister hypothesis that wars are started deliberately to fuel western military-industrial economies. I also suspect whether the right to bear arms is the real cause of violence. It has become apparent that it is those same extreme leftists, who promote the benefits of gun control and disarmament, who argue that the family is the source of all violence.
The truth is not so straight forward. More civilian deaths have occurred in undemocratic artificial states, than in America, because of state-led violence against political opposition. The former Yugoslavia is a case in point where more of their own 'civilians' have been turned into refugees or killed by assassination, tanks, missiles, grenades and land mines during 'peace-time' than during WWII. Whilst in the West we were being taught about the evil nature of the revolutionary tactics of 1789 or 1917, the alleged merits of those violent tactics were taught in communist Yugoslav primary schools. It is totalitarianism which is responsible for most civilian deaths in this world, and those who would disarm their nation will pay the price with their lives. The early stages of WWII offer us a prime example, when the secretly built Hitler war machine controlled Europe and the Atlantic, whilst the western nations were desperately struggling to transform their mixed free market economies into command economies.
A military conflict requires more than one side. In the early stages of Serbian terrorism unarmed Croatian people were not equipped to withstand the synchronized sieges on their major centres and towns. In August 1990 when so-called Croatian Serbs barricaded all major transportation routes linking north and south Croatia, sending tourists away, there were no 'warring parties'. At the point when Serbs did not accept Croatia's turn to lead the rotating Presidency in Belgrade there was still no 'military conflict'. When the Serbian-led Yugoslav Peoples Army bombed unarmed Croatian civilians in their homes in 1991 killing thousands it was amoral mass murder and terrorism, not military conflict, not civil war, and not alleged ethnic cleansing. Unarmed Croatian people were terrorized out of a third of their own country in the name of 'minority rights' and those fleeing to cities found themselves again bombed and deprived of their water and electricity.
Belgrade had correctly calculated there would be no serious opposition to its plan for a Greater Serbia. Major powers hoped to contain Serbian aggression, and therefore left matters to the United Nations, which imposed an arms embargo effectively handicapping the unarmed. The UN failed in its mandate to disarm Serbs whose intentions turned towards Bosnia.
The so-called civil war or conflict in the former Yugoslavia during the early 1990s was the result of a pre-planned highly coordinated and violent Serbian-led revolution, the aim of which was the transformation by force of the regional and political structure of former Yugoslav Republics into a greater Serbian totalitarian state. In 1990 political expression in Croatia was crushed through violent means as it had been in 1928, 1945 or in the 1970s. For example, in the early 1970s in communist Yugoslavia 32,000 Croatian communists were expelled from their positions, incarcerated or exiled. This era known as the 'Croatian Spring' had not received international publicity, and therefore no sympathy, unlike the Prague Spring.
By 1990 the Yugoslav National Army (the 3rd largest in Europe) had been restructured into 29 fully operational tank brigades that, in hindsight, clearly offered greater tactical advantage against the 'internal enemies of the state' where even communism had been a crime, if you were Croatian. It appears as if democracy was also a crime, if you were Croatian.
In conclusion,
Croatian people eventually defended themselves, so there is no doubt that a military conflict did evolve in the former Yugoslavia, but it was Serbia which started that aggression with the active support of the Yugoslav Peoples Army.
Serbs had correctly calculated that they would get away with it. The world watched in horror but did nothing. The UN defence of the armed camp, instead of the unarmed, gave a green light to the Serbian aggressor with the help of the re-structured Yugoslav Army to invade civilians in Bosnia. Whilst on the surface this looks like a case in point for the advocates of a permanent war theory, I believe the chain of events were too random and costly to have been deliberately engineered by western powers.
In order to portray the break-up of Yugoslavia as the result of 'equal guilt' by equal 'warring parties', most of the Yugoslav Army-backed Serbian aggression in Croatia (as reported in contemporaneous media) has been eliminated from recent history books. Propaganda and moral equivalency have made it easier for the Hague tribunal to treat the innocent and the guilty alike.
Jean Lunt Marinovic
April 2007
Home  |  About Us  |  Gallery  |  Maps  |  Contact Us  |  Site Map