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The Second Coming of Joe McCarthy: David Gibbs Responds to Hoare’s Criticisms

with 389 comments

[Editor’s note: In the interest of an informed debate on this topic I have granted Professor David N.Gibbs a guest post to respond to criticism of his work by Dr Marko Attila Hoare.

I am very happy for any debate to take place in the comments pages below, but anyone tempted to contribute should first read my comments policy, make an effort to understand it and realise that their first post on this blog will need to be approved.

I don’t implement political censorship, but I do get a lot of spam from neo-Nazis, Far Right headbangers and some pretty nasty antisemites. So I hope that readers will be understanding. MB]

A guest post by David N. Gibbs.

“I see that Marko Atilla Hoare has been busy attacking my book, First Do No Harm: Humanitarian Intervention and the Destruction of Yugoslavia
(Vanderbilt University Press, 2009)
. His attacks have appeared on his own blog site, Greater Surbiton, as well as on Modernityblog.

In undertaking these attacks, however, Hoare has omitted important
information, which readers have a right to know: That the book
presented an extended critique of Hoare’s own publications on this
topic, and so he is not a disinterested party. To be specific, my book criticized Hoare’s work for shoddy scholarship, which included mischaracterizing the ethnic makeup of the Yugoslav National Army (p. 252), omitting information that the US sabotaged Bosnian peace talks (262), providing an inaccurate account of testimonies before the Hague tribunal (274), and neglecting evidence of Al Qaeda involvement in Bosnia (280). I understand Hoare’s anger that I have criticized his work, but he really should let readers know when he has a vested interest in a book that he is reviewing.

And Hoare’s recent attacks contain major factual errors. For example,
Hoare claims that my book “suppresses the history of Serb mass killings of Bosniaks in east Bosnia in 1992.” Wrong. Here is what my book actually says (122):

As war began [in 1992], Serb forces launched a major offensive in
northeast Bosnia, taking over a series of villages of mixed
ethnicity, and then expelling most of the non-Serb inhabitants by
force. By the end of 1992, Serb forces had overrun large portions of
Bosnia-Herzegovina, and they controlled approximately 70 percent of the whole area of the country. The process of ethnic cleansing, for
which the war became famous, had begun… The Bosnia conflict
quickly became notorious for the scale of atrocities, especially
those perpetrated by Serb forces against Muslim civilians. The
widespread practice of ethnic cleansing was often associated with
the killing of noncombatants, and also the raping of women and girls.

Thus Hoare’s claim – that I suppressed information on Serb atrocities in 1992 – is baseless. Hoare is of course entitled to criticize my book, but he is not entitled to do so on the basis of fiction.

Hoare also claims that Gibbs “hasn’t bothered to engage with the
existing literature, but simply ignored all the existing works that
undermine his thesis.” He then lists five specific authors that I
supposedly failed to cite (Michael Libal, Richard Caplan, Daniele
Corversi, Brendan Simms, and Hoare himself). Wrong again. In fact I
cited four of these authors, each several times, and also included them in the bibliography. Hoare’s own writings were cited in four separate endnotes. His claim that I have ignored these authors is thus baseless.

I am unsure whether I should be more impressed by the extravagance of
Hoare’s misstatements, or by the sloppiness of his fact checking.

And there is yet more sloppiness: Hoare writes that the research for my book entailed “regurgitating English-language sources,” previously used by others. This claim is ridiculous, a point that will be evident to anyone who glances at the extensive list of primary sources in my 26-page bibliography. Finally Hoare implies that my book relies too heavily on the writings of University of Ottawa economist Michel Chossudovsky, someone that Hoare does not like. In reality I cited Chossudovsky exactly once (out of more than a thousand separate endnotes).

As is typical of his writing, Hoare grandiosely overstates his own
accomplishments and presents himself as a leading authority on the
topic of my book; he is not. In reality, my book was a study of the
international relations of the Yugoslav wars, a topic on which Hoare
has no qualifications. He also lacks access to German-language sources, which are crucial to understanding the diplomacy of this period. And given Hoare’s numerous factual errors, the scholarly content of his work is thin.

Throughout, Hoare creates the impression that my book was an extended
apologia for Serb conduct. This is wildly inaccurate. In fact, my book extensively described Serb atrocities in Bosnia, Croatia, and Kosovo, and noted that Serb atrocities were much larger than those undertaken by other ethnic groups. I also discussed at length the nefarious role of Slobodan Milosevic in helping to make all of this possible, a fact that again runs contrary to the impressions created in Hoare’s review.

To state my position: I have no particular sympathy or hostility toward any of the ethnic groups in the Balkans, and present the facts as objectively as possible. Such is not the case for Dr. Hoare, however, whose work is heavily slanted against the Serbs, and in favor of their adversaries, especially the Croats. In making this point, I do not reference Dr. Hoares own ethnic background or his motives, since these are irrelevant. Instead, I refer to the content of Hoare’s writings, which represent an extended exercise in ethnic partisanship.

Let us now turn to Dr. Hoare’s “style” of argumentation. One his main
techniques is to attack the motives of his opponents. He does this in
recent postings on Modernityblog, during an argument with an anonymous blogger called Asteri. Hoare attacks Asteri as “a self confessed Greek nationalist” – as if this refutes his/her arguments. The response is obvious: Even if the blogger is a Greek nationalist, why should anyone care?

The blogger’s ethnic background and politics have no bearing on whether the substantive claims are right or wrong, and Hoare’s ad hominem attacks only serve to distract. Yet, ad hominem attacks remain a staple feature of Hoare’s writing style. All of this is not the mark of the objective scholar but of the polemicist – which is exactly what Hoare really is. Hoare’s ad hominem attacks would be perfectly acceptable on the talk radio shows. But they are discrediting for someone who poses as a scholar.

Another of Dr. Hoare’s techniques is to threaten writers who might
disagree with his opinions. In a recent posting to Greater Surbiton, he boasts:

A couple of years ago I sacrificed a couple of days of my life to writing a review that cataloged the numerous falsehoods and
distortions contained in the sensationalist anti-Muslim propaganda
tracts about the Bosnian war written by Christopher Deliso and John Schindler. Since then, I have never seen either of those books cited by any reputable author. If my review contributed to this happy state of affairs, then writing it was a worthwhile use of my time.

He also states that writers who disagree with his positions are “like
lambs to the slaughter,” who will surely “sacrifice any reputations
they might have.”

It is very unusual to see a professor boast publicly – in writing no
less – that he will destroy the reputations and presumably the careers of those who dare to disagree. Note also the venomous tone of his statements. Apparently, Hoare is not interested in refuting arguments through reasoned debate, since reason has no place in his method. Instead, he destroys reputations; and he seems to do so recklessly, without regard for the facts.

Now, I am a tenured full professor and am unimpressed by his threats.
And in truth, I plan to use some of Hoare’s more hysterical accusations as a blurb for future printings of my book; it will no doubt sell copies. However, I can well imagine the chilling effect that these attacks have on younger writers, who will feel constrained by the poisonous atmosphere that Hoare has helped to create. The overall effect has been to stifle free debate, by intimidating potential debaters.

In essence, Dr. Hoare and his network of neocon friends at the Bosnian Institute and the Henry Jackson Society have designated themselves as the new Thought Police, while conducting their own little witch hunt.
Anyone who wants evidence of this witch hunt can just click on Hoare’s website, which is pretty self incriminating.

If Hoare has a sense of fair play, he will attach this reply to his
website, along with his attack on me. He will also correct his more
egregious factual errors.

David N. Gibbs
Professor of History and Government
University of Arizona ”

Update 1: [From one of Santa’s helpers], Dr. Hoare has replied at Greater Surbiton, in a post entitled: First Check Their Sources: On David N. Gibbs and ‘shoddy scholarship’. Here’s a small extract:



I shall deal shortly with the specific points Gibbs raises, but let us first make this clear: it is wholly untrue that Gibbs’s book has ‘presented an extended critique’ of my own publications. Anyone reading Gibbs’s book without examining carefully the endnotes would not even notice that I had been criticised at all: my name does not appear in the text itself, nor in the index. Gibbs has four trivial quibbles with me, buried in his endnotes. Gibbs does not, as he now claims, accuse me in his book of ‘shoddy scholarship’, and has made this accusation only in his subsequent reply to me. I cannot help but suspect that he has only decided I am guilty of ‘shoddy scholarship’ after reading my critique of his book.

If my own mum, dad, best friend, girlfriend or granny had reviewed my work, and come up with nothing more substantial than Gibbs’s four quibbles, I’d feel I was getting off lightly and that they were being too soft on me. If all four of his quibbles were entirely justified, I hardly think they would mark me down as a ‘shoddy scholar’. “

389 Responses

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  1. Joe McCarty was maligned for no good reason. He was one of the great patriotic Americans in the history of that nation

    amband

    20/12/2010 at 04:58

  2. Newer readers, please make an effort to read my comments policy.

    modernityblog

    20/12/2010 at 05:11

  3. Actually, I might be somewhat leery of the author’s use of neocon. Traditionally, this is leftist double talk for “evil Jewish Republican”. The author was doing well up to that point.

    Beakerkin

    20/12/2010 at 05:19

  4. Good point Beakerkin.

    If you hear or read somebody throwing around terms like ‘neocon’ around alot, odds are they have no clue what the term really means. It has become an empty perjorative term used to denounce anything somebody doesn’t like, much like how right wingers in the USA throw the term ‘socialism’ around half-ass.

    Andrew Murphy

    20/12/2010 at 06:48

  5. neocon

    neo = new con = conservative

    Originally democrats whose political icon is Leo Strauss a leftwing European. I must say European, as to be more specific I would break the ridiculous comment policy that we were reminded of after I made positive remarks about Joe McCarthy

    What a good way to avoid speaking about the people mentioned in that policy. Fine to talk about the people the site owner hates, in negative terms, but not their antagonists

    Beakerkin, you were close, but wrong party. They only gravitated to the repubs

    amband

    20/12/2010 at 07:01

  6. I had the same thought about ‘neocon’. Otherwise it is difficult to comment meaningfully on one element in a debate, taken out of context, on such a specialist topic. I can imagine these points (some of them anyway) could be answered – eg one might include 4 footnotes to a book without fully engaging with it.

    Sarah AB

    20/12/2010 at 08:28

  7. the info I supplied re the neocons is accurate.

    Google Neocons and strauss

    amband

    20/12/2010 at 09:04

  8. Amband

    There was zero need for the use of the term that those on the left frequently use as a codeword for Jews. The term is almost always used as a pejorative by the left most often in conjunction with some cabal.

    The author was making excellent points until that paragraph. With that paragraph, he effectively lost the argument or any claim of moral superiority. Let the author show these are followers of Strauss or whom he is discussing. The term is basically almost always used by lefties as a code word for Jews.

    This sloppiness is typical when leftist types do not have their comments looked at by people outside their narrow clique.

    Beakerkin

    20/12/2010 at 11:22

  9. Well, have you considered that the Neocons are largely Jews?

    If you google “who are the Neocons” you will see many references to Neocons being Jews, from both mainstream as well as extreme sites. I’m not responsible for that. That’s just the way it is

    None of us are perfect, and it does not reflect negatively on Jews per se. The trouble comes when there are denials of the obvious, and individuals are not held responsible and are allowed to hide behind a largely innocent people

    amband

    20/12/2010 at 11:33

  10. I thank people for responding to my post so quickly. I was hoping however, to elicit some direct responses to my points about Yugoslavia. Any thoughts.

    David Gibbs

    20/12/2010 at 12:27

  11. The idea of the influence of Leo Strauss on the neocons is utterly absurd. Strauss, who was not by the way “left wing”, was a marginal figure who has been read by very few neocons, interesting though his writing is. Strauss did influence Allen Bloom, who was himself fairly influential, and Paul Wolfowitz attended a couple of his lecture courses as a students, but that’s about it. Strauss had little influence on Kristol, less on Podhoretz, and not much on any of the other founders of neoconservatism.

    I doubt very much if Marko has read any Leo Strauss, by the way, or if anyone else at the Henry Jackson Society or Bosnia Institute has. I find the term “neoconservative” too vague to be of much use, apart from as an empty insult as Professor Gibbs uses it here. If it includes Marko Attila Hoare, for example, then it probably includes pretty much anyone to the right of Professor Gibbs.

    Interestingly, either Gibbs is right or Amband is, because they can’t both be: Marko is not to my knowledge Jewish. And nor are the other Henry Jackson Society folk I know of, such as Robin Shepherd, Tufail Ahmad, or Robin Simcox. And nor are any of the staff, trustees or consultants of the Bosnian Institute.

    Bob

    20/12/2010 at 15:13

  12. And I, like Professor Gibbs, think we should move on to discussion of what him and Hoare have said about Yugoslavia!

    Bob

    20/12/2010 at 15:14

  13. [Editor’s note: readers should bear in mind, if any comment contains a lot of links then it will be automatically seen as spam by WordPress and placed in the moderation queue.

    Should that happen to you then please contact me and I will endeavour to release it. I fully appreciate that posters might want to illustrate their points with reference to other material, etc etc, but they should be aware of how WordPress’s blogging system handles comments, to avoid any misunderstanding. ]

    modernityblog

    20/12/2010 at 15:25

  14. Amband,

    Was the late Jeane Kirkpatrick Jewish?

    For that matter is , James Q Wilson, Francis Fukuyama, Robert Kagan, Max Boot, Randy Scheunemann, Irvin Stelzer ,Jewish also?

    As to the part about Leo Strauss. To put his political influence into prespective, legal theorist Walter Berns in DC gave a talk several years ago about Strauss when asked about how much Strauss viewed modern politics, this is what he said.

    ‘Well, we were both at the University of Chicago together during the Presidential election year [it was 1952 or 1956]. Strauss came to me and said, “Now we are residents of the state of Illinois I think it behoves us to votefor Illinois’s native son, Adlai Stevenson. But I have never voted, so can you tell me how to register?”’

    There you have it, the nefarious puppetmaster of the ‘neocons’

    Andrew Murphy

    20/12/2010 at 16:04

  15. Please ignore amband.

    He’s no longer a poster here, my mistake for letting him thru in the first place.

    modernityblog

    20/12/2010 at 16:09

  16. I personally think it is helpful to get a dose of Amband and his/her like every now and again – it’s good to know the nonsense we are up against. However, on this thread, it is high time we moved on to discuss Gibbs’ defence against Hoare, on which I have to say I am very curious but not knowledgeable enough to weigh in on!

    Bob

    20/12/2010 at 16:43

  17. Indeed Bob,

    I find these discussions on the Balkans to be informative and I would like to see how the issues are drawn out by experts in the field.

    modernityblog

    20/12/2010 at 16:58

  18. In the interest of fairness to Dr Hoare I’ll put the charge of “self confessed Greek nationalist” into some context, Dr Hoare does present himself as an anti-nationalist who considers nationalism as destructive force, (though I would view some of his writings and links on his blog as supporting nationalism), previously I had a debate with Dr Hoare on the Srebrenica Genocide blog last spring, and later on in the CiF, though not in discussion with Dr Hoare I said I was Greek and that was were I placed my nationalism.

    Returning to Yugoslavia, Dr Hoare attacked Dr Gibbs book for not using using Yugoslav sources and for being a propaganda pamphlet, I agreed that it not having any Yugoslav sources (if that was strictly true) put the book at a disadvantage but was far from being a legitimate dismissal of the book. I’ll state it again, the book is not an in-depth history of Yugoslavia but is a critique of western intervention and the behaviour of the western media, since Dr Gibbs is from the the country that was most crucially involved in the Yugoslav interventions it can hardly be said that he does not have access to relevant sources.

    I will partly agree with “Bob” that Neo-con is a vague charge and should not be used as an insult. The Henry Jackson society is an ultra rightwing and hawkish institution that openly supports the use of violent aggression against its countries that in regards as enemies of the west. The Bosnian Institute on the hand is a different institution entirely. Its not (to my knowledge anyway) like other State institutes abroad that it was financed by the Bosnian government or in anyway connected it, it was set up privately and eventually closed due to lack of money, but still exists on line. Its founders were Dr Hoare’s parents the British translator Quentin Hoare and his Croatian wife the author Branka Margas, who were both considered to be on the left but moved to the right later on. Its chairman is Noel Malcolm who could I suppose be regarded as a Neo-con in the loose sense of the term, he certainly is a right wing Thatcherite, but also an isolationist and Euro-sceptic, Dr Hoare certainly is not. The Bosnian Institute is really an institute that supports the Bosnian Muslims and the agenda of the the right-wing SDA party rather than Bosnia and its other peoples as a whole.

    Asteri

    20/12/2010 at 17:11

  19. That should be “openly supports the use of violent aggression against countries that it regards as enemies of the west”

    Excuse me.

    Asteri

    20/12/2010 at 17:14

  20. […] Second Coming of Joe McCarthy: David Gibbs Responds to Hoare’s Criticisms Posted on 20/12/2010 by modernityblog| 18 […]

  21. My own review of David Gibbs’s excellent book is here:

    http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2009/proyect300309.html

    louisproyect

    20/12/2010 at 17:26

  22. Speaking of Yugoslavia, I posted this today on Diana Johnstone

    http://hurryupharry.org/2010/12/20/diana-johnstones-falsification-school-of-history/

    Andrew Murphy

    20/12/2010 at 21:03

  23. Other than the line about Neocons it was an excellent piece of argumentation.The author presented his facts in a coherent and logical manner. I really wish the author has been judicious enough to stick to the facts at hand.

    My own thoughts on this matter were largely shaped by author Stephen Schwartz of the CIP and a family friend whose family was a member of the Jewish Community in Kosovo. Oddly, this person is not a Schwartz fan and was somewhat critical of him as being eccentric. However, on a whole she stated the small Jewish community was safer with the Muslim community than with the Serbian community.

    Schwartz had boots on the ground time and has written many numerous articles on the subject. I think according to Schwartz the Al Queda involvement comes at a later point.

    I would be curious if the author was familiar with the articles Stephen Schwartz of the CIP has written on the subject. He is a very talented writer, and a brilliant man with a sometimes caustic wit.

    Beakerkin

    21/12/2010 at 00:53

  24. I have read the guest post more carefully now, and also looked at Louis Proyect’s review in MRZine and at the WSWS review of Gibbs’ book. I am absolutely not an expert on the conflict in the former Yugoslavia, so everything I say in this comment should be read as that of a lay person who has read just a couple of books. I also confess a personal interest: I have met Marko once or twice and we got on pretty well, whereas I have never met Professor Gibbs.

    Re-reading Gibbs’ guest post, I find it persuasive. He appears not to be the denier of Serbian atrocities that Marko asserts he is. He sticks largely to facts, to direct quotations and so on.

    This falls down a little at the end, in the paragraph that we’ve already dwelt on too much that uses the word “neocon”. Perhaps more striking than the word “neocon” is the idea of a Thought Police conducting a witch hunt. This strikes me as utterly disproportionate. As noted by Asteri, the BI has little or no resources at its disposal and has little or no influence anywhere. Its staff are hardly major players in the geopolitical scene. Contrast them to the first coming of Joe McCarthy, which actually destroyed people’s lives and livelihoods, and stopped them from publishing – whereas Gibbs suggests that Hoare’s criticisms might help him sell copies of his book.

    This brings me to the second thing that strikes me: the academic politics. Gibbs refers to Hoare as a professor. In fact, Hoare is a Reader, which is a step down from a professor, in, if I may say so, a relatively un-prestigious British higher education institute. In the UK, there is no equivalent of the system of tenure that protects senior American academics such as Gibbs, who says “I am a tenured full professor and am unimpressed by his threats”. I find Gibbs’ attitude there slightly problematic, speaking as an academic on a very insecure temporary contract.

    Moving on to the more substantive material, I find Gibbs’ emphasis on German imperialism convincing. I think this is a feature that the anglophone left has really underplayed. Gibbs acknowledges that America came late to the Balkan table, after Germany had played a major role in destablising the region.

    I do not disagree with his arguments that the American state acted in the Balkans primarily out of a non-humanitarian motive, and that later humanitarian justification was to some extent an alibi for its material interests. (I believe this is also the case with Iraq.) However, I think that, from the WSWS and MRZine it looks like Gibbs overstates the coherence of the American stance. I would be curious how he regards Samantha Power’s account in A Problem From Hell. (Power was in Bosnia when the Srebernica massacre happens, and she argues that the Bush government and the Clinton government vaccillated and avoided action, and that there were powerful contending voices inside each administration for and against military and humanitarian involvement. I summarise her argument here: http://brockley.blogspot.com/2008/07/extraordinary-claim.html .)

    I also note the WSWS review http://www.wsws.org/articles/2009/jul2009/book-j13.shtml which is very positive about Gibbs’ book spends some time on Gibbs’ positive evaluation of Milosovic:
    The Serbs, Gibbs explains, “were only one party to the breakup of Yugoslavia…other ethnic groups bear at least as much of the blame.” As for Milosevic, he was no better or worse than the other ex-Stalinist bureaucrats Franjo Tudjman in Croatia and Milan Kucan in Slovenia. The author observes correctly that each of these leaders rose to prominence due to the influence of the Western powers, which demanded structural adjustment policies, enforced by the IMF, resulting in a catastrophic decline in living standards, and making the population vulnerable to nationalist demagogy.

    Gibbs asserts that “[t]he principal reason for the [Western] hostility toward Milosevic was that he advanced views and specific policies that were anticapitalist.” The author points out that Milosevic, a former favorite of the Western powers, used the Socialist Party as a vehicle for “his nationalism” at the same time that he used socialist and anti-capitalist phraseology to appeal to the masses and “hardline Communists” within the Yugoslav army.

    At this point, Gibbs is politically at sea. Milosevic’s nationalism had nothing to do with “communism.”[…] Milosevic was targeted, not on account of his “anti-capitalism.” Like other former allies and “assets”—Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Bin Laden and the Taliban in Afghanistan—he had outlived his usefulness. The Serb leader had become an impediment to American plans for the Balkans, a strategic part of the Eurasian continent within striking distance of Russia, the former Soviet republics, the Middle East and the Caspian Sea—regions rich in oil, gas and other critical natural resources.

    Moving on, I am curious too as to how Gibbs might respond to the specific allegation that Hoare made against him: that his account of Srebernica air-brushes the Serbian role by overplaying Oric’s offensives and leaving out the context in which the latter occured. I hope, then, that Professor Gibbs is able to assure us that his account fully recognises the other side to the prequel to Srebernica, i.e. the dstruction of Bosniak villages in the area and killing and displacing of large numbers of Bosniaks. Specifically, does he dispute the claims made by the BI’s Daniel Toljaga that “More than three years before the 1995 Srebrenica genocide, Bosnian Serb nationalists – with the logistical, moral and financial support of Serbia and the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA) – destroyed 296 predominantly Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim)1 villages in the region around Srebrenica, forcibly uprooting some 70,000 Bosniaks from their homes and systematically massacring at least 3,166 Bosniaks (documented deaths) including many women, children and the elderly. It was these massacres that should have alerted the international community to the prospect of genocide when the United Nations-protected enclave eventually fell to Bosnian Serb forces commanded by General Ratko Mladic three years later, in July 1995.”

    Moving on again, I am curious, as a lay person, whether Stephen Schwartz is taken seriously in scholarly circles. He could probably be genuinely described as a “neocon” although he is a convert to Islam. His account and Hoare’s sharply differ: Hoare gives little credence to the role of al-Qaeda and Wahhabism, which Schwartz puts a lot of emphasis on. (Schwartz is one of the writers who formed my understanding of the conflict, along with Joe Sacco and Samantha Power.)

    I note Diana Johnstone’s Fool’s Crusade is cited a couple of times in Gibbs’ book, and Proyect praises Gibbs by comparing him to her. If Gibbs is reading this, I wonder if he has any comments on Andrew Murphy’s post linked to above.

    Bob

    21/12/2010 at 12:48

  25. On the issue of Serb atrocities, some excellent counterpoints have been raised. Rather that respond at length, I will refer readers to two short articles I wrote, one on Bosnia, and the second on Kosovo. I think that these articles should answer the main questions raised, and also give a sense of my general positions, as presented at greater length in my 2009 book. Please also note that my main focus was on the international relations on the Balkan wars, rather than the internal dynamics. The two articles:

    D. Gibbs, “The Srebrenica Massacre After Fifteen Years,” Foreign Policy in Focus, July 30, 2010, http://www.fpif.org/articles/the_srebrenica_massacre_after_fifteen_years

    D. Gibbs, “Was Kosovo the Good War?” Tikkun, July/August 2009, http://www.tikkun.org/article.php/jul_09_gibbs

    On the Bosnian Institute: While it is true that the Institute itself exists mainly on the internet, the network of academics associated with it (Simms, Malcolm, Banac, and Magas, as well as Hoare) have excellent ties to the mass media in the UK and the US. This group has done much to shape the debate and to misinform the public.

    On Diana Johnstone’s 2002 book, Fool’s Crusade: She is far too lenient with regard to Slobodan Milosevic’s role in laying the groundwork for political destabilization and mass atrocities in Yugoslavia. And she has a tendency to understate the extent of Serb atrocities, especially at Srebrenica, and in other cases as well. And some of her sources seem dodgy (although most seem reasonable). On the other hand, Johnstone’s book has many positive features, including her account of international intervention as a major cause of the violence. She is also correct that, the press did overstate the extent of Serb atrocities, at least in some cases, while they tended too ignore or understate atrocities committed by other ethnic groups against the Serbs. With regard to Kosovo, the Council of Europe recently issued a report implicating the Kosovo Liberation Army in major criminal acts, confirming at least some of what Johnstone alleges. So my assessment of Fool’s Crusade is mixed.

    On the “neocons.” I think this has become a distraction, but since it has been raised I will address it. The term neoconservative (“neocon” for short) is a word of self description quite openly used by followers of the late Senator Henry Jackson. I really do not understand what all the fuss is about. However, if people find my “neocon” reference to be annoying, I am happy to retract it.

    David Gibbs

    21/12/2010 at 17:40

  26. Its worth watching some of Prof. Gibbs lectures online, he’s actually a lot closer to the main stream on Milosevic and the behaviour of Serbs than Marko tries to present him. As for Neo-cons, the HJS is full of them and they do have an influence in geopolitics, very few people who don’t have an interest in the Balkans would ever of heard of the BI but its chairmen is quite famous and recognised.

    Asteri

    21/12/2010 at 18:16

  27. In this post the author, Professor Gibbs, insinuates that Marko is much more powerful than he is. In fact, in a profession that is increasingly uncertain and precarious, unlike so many academics who avoid conflicts even at the cost of sacrificing their values, because one never knows what the future brings, Marko does not hesitate to get involved in polemics, some of which are extremely poisonous. And he does not hesitate to dismantle bad scholarship and bad journalism in the area of his expertise.

    Unlike Professor Gibbs who lives in the comfort of a tenure position, that is a job for life.

    To make a harsh review is not to make threats. We all face the consequences of our actions. If what we write is rubbish, we cannot complain when someone else points it out. Here I am not reffering to Gibb’s book, which I haven’t read, but to the two books mentioned on Marko’s original post, one of which I had the opportunity to read myself. This is actually a duty that scholars have, to help to sift the wheat from the chaff. Reviews are influential but not decisive, and a bad review per se will not have big consequences if it is counterbalanced by others which are positive and more credible than the negative one. However, when after a while a piece of scholarship fails to be cited by the academic community in a specific field, that is a good measure of the lack of relevance or quality of a given piece.

    In what regards the books published about Bosnia and the region, Marko’s work is systematically cited by all serious scholarship, and I’ve never read a negative review of his work. That does give him some authority to pick fights with professors with tenure. The power that he has is the power of his arguments, but Professor Gibbs prefers to see him as someone backed by powerful connections.

    Regarding intervention in Bosnia, all that was necessary was to allow Bosnia the right to self-defence, a right that according to the Charter of the United Nations all states recognized as sovereign have. All that was necessary in 1992 was to lift the arms embargo and let the Bosnian state defend and its citizens defend themselves. So there is much to criticise about the international response to the conflict. But the ‘first do no harm’ metaphor is, I have to say, quite upsetting. I don’t like the use biological of organicist metaphors to explain phenomenon in politics and international relations, but since the title and the abstract are the only things I’ve read about this book, that’s all I can comment on.

    When a doctor faces a patient who is bleeding to death, the ‘first do no harm’ principle loses all its significance. Bosnia was bleeding to death, the doctors around watched, and gave Bosnia a loaf of bread once in a while, until finally one day new doctors came and reluctantly decided it might be a good idea to do something about it. We cannot get our hands into messy things and not get messy ourselves. So when the doctor sees a patient bleeding to death, he has to take risks, and then later deal with the negative consequences of the decisions taken.

    Bosnia still exists, and although many people are pessimistic (including Marko), I am not, because I can see how it is slowly recovering both from the bleeding, polako, as people say in Bosnia.

    Sarah Correia

    21/12/2010 at 22:07

  28. ops, not being a native speaker, I failed to see that i didn’t express myself correctly in the second paragraph, where I say : “Unlike Professor Gibbs who lives in the comfort of a tenure position, that is a job for life. ”

    The unlike here should refer to taking risks. I didn’t mean to imply that Gibbs avoids involving himself in polemics. I merely meant that Gibbs risks nothing (except his reputation), because he is protected by his tenure position.

    My apologies for the confusion on the previous comment, and please take the present correction into account when reading it.

    Sarah Correia

    21/12/2010 at 22:36

  29. Brilliantly put Sarah.

    Asteri, you say that Gibbs represents the mainstream view, but it is striking that both Louis Proyect’s and WSWS’s positive reviews note that he stands out from the mainstream. What is the mainstream view?

    I might be persuaded that the Henry Jackson Society has influence (although I’d be grateful for some evidence), but I think there is still an enormous gap between this and the capacity to conduct a “witch hunt”. I assume the post’s title is Gibbs’ and not Mod’s editorial addition – if I’m right it strikes me as quite self-aggrandizing as well as hyperbolic.

    BobFromBrockley

    22/12/2010 at 11:26

  30. Bob, a witch hunt can only be conducted by people in positions of power, usually under the cover of the authority of the state, or through parallel structures of power (in business companies and workplaces, for instance). That is a very different thing than a group of people organising themselves to promote ideas and make advocacy. Advocacy groups and even pressure groups are normal things in a democracy.

    Furthermore, Gibbs fails to address Marko Hoare’s main point: that he denies that the Massacre of Srebrenica was an act of genocide. Marko cites Gibbs words :

    “””‘Certainly, the murder of eight thousand people is a grave crime, but to call it “genocide” needlessly exaggerates the scale of the crime.’ (p. 281).””””

    Needlessly exaggerates the scale of the crime???? First of all, this has been called a genocide by the ICTY, the ICJ and the European Court of Human Rights.

    Secondly- the scale: to kill 8000 men in three days, and then bury them, later un-bury them and scatter the bodies in different secondary mass graves, sometimes even tertiary…

    The scale is even hard to conceive… The war between Spring 1992 and November 1995 made around 100 000 victims, of which around 40 000 were civilians. So, the figure of 8000 is 20% of the total of civilian victims, and they were killed in just three days.

    For a synthesis of the study by RDC: http://www.norveska.ba/News_and_events/Society-and-Policy/rdc_bbd/
    The other study, by demographer Ewa Tableau comes to figures very similar, though a different methodology.

    Thus it cannot be denied that Gibbs in this phrase does try play down the scale of the crime, and that he effectively denies it was an act of genocide. Therefore he cannot complain if someone else labels him a genocide denier.

    Sarah Correia

    22/12/2010 at 13:12

  31. I realize that Hoare has his defenders on this blog, but the defense seems weak so far, especially since Hoare’s repeated factual errors and other failings are unmentioned. Surprising that Hoare himself has not yet responded. Hopefully that will change.

    I attach below a couple of articles I wrote recently, which may be useful to the discussion.

    D. Gibbs, “The Srebrenica Massacre After Fifteen Years,” Foreign Policy in Focus, July 30, 2010, http://www.fpif.org/articles/the_srebrenica_massacre_after_fifteen_years

    “Was Kosovo the Good War?” Tikkun, July/August 2009, http://www.tikkun.org/article.php/jul_09_gibbs

    David Gibbs

    22/12/2010 at 13:43


  32. at about 3:40 minutes in the views he expresses are pretty much within the main stream of academic thought on Kosovo (though not main stream regarding the media) , I can’t really speak for Louis Proycect and not would a compare Gibbs book to Johnstone’s.

    The HJS has a substantial(ish) list of members, patrons and donors, including quite a few international statesmen, politicians, journalists and presidents of various NGOs and Foundations, I’m not saying they have much of an influence as an organisation but those people undoubtedly do have influence.

    “Needlessly exaggerates the scale of the crime???? First of all, this has been called a genocide by the ICTY, the ICJ and the European Court of Human Rights. ”

    Its perfectly possible to disagree with a courts judgement, you’ll find it happens quite often and judgements can be reasonably challenged by analysts, a courts judgement is necessary not the final word. Marko along with a quite a few people, including Francis Boyle, the Bosnian Muslims and Daniel Toljaga reject the judgement that Serbia was not guilty of Genocide in Bosnia, while Matthew Parish and others reject the courts judgement that Kosovo independence was legal.

    Asteri

    22/12/2010 at 14:01

  33. Dear Readers,

    Please READ and remember.

    I am away.

    I won’t be able to do a ANYTHING on the blog for days and days, I have managed to find a PC, but this is temporary.

    So if you post a comment with a plenty of links, you’ll be stuck in the spam queue, automatically.

    If you are a NEW poster to the blog, your first comment needs to be approved, first time out.

    [If you are a neo-nazi, bigot, genocide denier, troll, etc then your comment is going to stay in the spam queue, please read my comments policy. Yes you know who you are…]

    Otherwise, enjoy the discussion.

    modernityblog

    22/12/2010 at 17:29

  34. ” I assume the post’s title is Gibbs’ and not Mod’s editorial addition – if I’m right it strikes me as quite self-aggrandizing as well as hyperbolic.”

    You are correct, other than add some links, and minor pagination I have not edited any of the text, or the title.

    modernityblog

    22/12/2010 at 19:42

  35. Please forgive me for sending the same information twice, but the first was “stuck” and did not appear on the blog, and so I resent. Both

    David Gibbs

    22/12/2010 at 22:33

  36. If doubts remained that Marko Hoare is right in accusing Gibbs of genocide denial, his article linked in the comment above clear any doubts.

    “”When intervention was actually undertaken in Bosnia, it mainly served to worsen the crisis. “”

    No, when intervention was finally undertaken it led to the Dayton Agreement, which despite its flaws, put an end to the war.

    “”. For most of the war, Serb militias besieged the town and the Bosnian government army defended it, nominally assisted by a small number of troops from the United Nations peacekeeping force, UNPROFOR””

    It weren’t Serb militias. It was the Army of Republika Srpska.

    That is a typical text of the second-generation Srebrenica genocide deniers. It is no longer a matter of denying that around 8000 men were killed, but to distort the context and distribute the blame. If, on the one hand the basic facts regarding the crime itself, are no longer denied, because the evidence is so overwhelming, on the other, small details are added to feed the doubt in the mind of the reader.

    It is the case, for instance, of the attacks of Muslim forces to Serb villages around Srebrenica, which omits that these were not solely villages, but were militarized and used by the army of RS to shell the enclave. There was a war going on, of course in a war there are offensives and counter-offensives. The besieged had the right to defend themselves, and that includes launching offensives.

    All the context that led to the besiege of Srebrenica described in the article is written in a manipulative manner.

    Then the invocation of the operation Storm, a common device among the second-generation Srebrenica genocide deniers.

    Finally the manipulative invocation of what happened in the Bihac enclave…

    The invocation of the Cutilheiro plan is also a typical argument. However Gibbs fails to invoke all the plans between the Cutilheiro plan and the Dayton Agreement, which were all refused by the RS leadership. And it is far from certain that even if the Culheiro plan had been accepted, it would have avoided a war. Nobody knows.

    As a manipulator, Gibbs is, one has to admit, quite skilful. He even mentions the ICTY and ICJ decisions, but does not endorse himself the word genocide to qualify the massacre. It is a clear case of slightly and more or less subtly distorting facts to fit a certain line of argumentation about the wider question of foreign intervention. It’s sad that Bosnia gets caught on this.

    Sarah Correia

    22/12/2010 at 23:06

  37. “The invocation of the Cutilheiro plan is also a typical argument. However Gibbs fails to invoke all the plans between the Cutilheiro plan and the Dayton Agreement, which were all refused by the RS leadership. And it is far from certain that even if the Culheiro plan had been accepted, it would have avoided a war. Nobody knows.”

    The Carrighton-Cutilheiro plan was actually the most important while being the best and fairest plan put forward between 1992-95, it offered the Bosnian Muslims more land than they got at Dayton or the other three plans, Izetbegovic made terrible mistake in rejected it, lets not forget he also rejected the 1993 Owen-Stoltenberg plan.

    Asteri

    23/12/2010 at 01:33

  38. re Izetbegovic’s rejection of the Carrington and later Owen respective plans- the hindsight of the pragmatist is no match for the blind optimism of the desperate. Izetbegovic’s decision was tied to the false belief that Europe and the Americans (USA) would not sit idly by and watch the literal dismemberment of a fledgling state. Karadzic has made much of this in his defense to the point that a large part of his defense rests upon the thesis that Izetbegovic et al actively manipulated the conflict at every opportunity to ensure western intervention.
    The implicit comment Bosnian Moslems needed to barter for more land misses the point, they still held the belief that the borders were inviolate and the issue was about the development of the political institutions to endorse inclusive policies, as similarly enshrined by the constitutions of EU and USA. Why would you think otherwise? Political naivete is not a capital offense.
    re Prof Gibbs’ response to Dr Hoare – admittedly having not as yet read the book but if the quote (122) is his best evidence of his recognition of Serbian ‘ethnic cleansing-culling’ then one must question his reasoning for glossing and diluting the reality of the horror that swept down the Drina and across Bosnia. The commentary is passive and non judgmental bordering on journalistic suggesting it was all part of a careful military campaign that got a bit ‘notoriously’ messy. Academic objectivity should not misrepresent terror.

    iko

    23/12/2010 at 13:57

  39. Just a quick note (in repy to David’s comment) re Marko, who I e-mailed and is trapped across the water by Europe’s winter travel chaos with limited internet access and will not be replying for a while.

    BobFromBrockley

    23/12/2010 at 14:04

  40. Unlike the other people responding to this blog, I have read Professor Gibbs’s book and followed up extensively on his sources (and his abuse of sources), and I have to say that Professor Hoare (who, whatever one thinks of his politics, which are not easy to pigeonhole, is a serious and respected scholar on Yugoslav history, including the history of the modern breakup of the country) is only partially correct in calling Gibbs’s book a “regurgitation … of the old denialist narrative.”

    Gibbs’s book is actually more cunning than Hoare acknowledges. According to the standard narrative of genocide deniers such as leftwingers Edward S. Herman, Diana Johnstone, Michel Chossudovsky, and the rightwing pro-Serbian nationalist apologists (neocons or not) at Antiwar.com and Chronicles Magazine (yes, Gibbs has his rightwing allies in this controversy, too, and these aren’t the only ones), the Srebrenica pogrom was an out-and-out “hoax”–the victims almost all died in battle, and were the greater perpetrators of war crimes, anyway, etc. and ad nauseam.

    Gibbs does not exactly deny that 7-8000 Muslim men and boys were killed at Srebrenica; nor does he deny that the Bosnan Serb nationalist/JNA killing machine attacked eastern Bosnia, but as Hoare points out, he manipulates chronology, turns cause and effect around, remains pretty much silent about the scope of and planning behind the genocidal war against non-Serbs from early 1992 (starting well before April 6, the date he cites as the beginning of the war) evades demographic evidence he misuses elsewhere in his book to quibble about what turned out to be inaccurate estimates of total casualty numbers (for example the work of the Sarajevo Research and Documentation Center). Gibbs also offers appalling and immoral sophist arguments to explain the war crimes, for example claiming that “the greater Serb atrocities resulted from their superior firepower, which enabled offensive operations” (p. 129)—as if atrocities were an automatic result even in combat, and, far more importantly, conveniently omitting the fact that the atrocities were committed during “offensive operations” against almost entirely unarmed men, women, and children.. Discussing Srebrenica in his book and the articles he is so proud of, he dances around the crime, “contextualizing” it by means of the same old revisionist arguments to undermine any real contextual understanding of what happened.

    So in a sense Gibbs is even more appalling than the more obvious wingnuts, because he projects a veneer of scholarly objectivity and even civility. He has the style down. This veneer apparently helped win him a full professorship at the University of Arizona since his book was published. In fact he should be censured for this work. His use of sources is a joke. He has learned to pad his bibliography with titles of books without really having had taken them into account, so, yes, he may cites in passing a writer such as Richard Caplan, whose book on the breakup of Yugoslavia and related international legal issues is one of the most important produced in English, but he never bothers to let his reader know that Caplan’s book pretty much evaporates his argument. This is called cherry-picking, and Gibbs is good at it.

    Gibbs engages in what one can only describe as a post-modern strategy of dislocation, ostensibly acknowledging Serb nationalist crimes while undermining a coherent sense of their having happened. He essentially turns what is supposed to be a book critiquing Western policy into the same, identifiable litany of lies that are disseminated by genocide deniers–to give a couple of particularly egregious examples among myriad–dismissing reports of the Serb killing camps as “contain[ing] an element of sensationalism” (p. 125), trotting out the canard that the Sarajevo government bombed its own people (which for the sake of argument, even if it had been occasionally the case, would never explain, let alone help the reader understand, the more than ten thousand deaths, including some 1,500 children, from Karadzic and Mladic’s bombardment and sniping.

    Along these lines, the readers of this blog should note that Gibbs has not responded to the criticism Hoare raises about his treatment of the Srebrenica genocide. He evades it with canards–for example claiming to have “presented an extended critique” of Hoare, when in fact he merely snipes at Hoare in four brief endnotes, which are made up essentially of claims and quibbles, and not serious evidence undermining anything Hoare has written. Go to a bookstore and look at the endnotes, and you will see what I mean. In my view, an extended critique should extend over a few pages at least (and therefore one might find the object of one’s critique in one’s index, where you will not find Hoare), is more than a few cheap shots.

    Thus, he writes that “there can be no question that Muslims were the principle victims of the war,” and he cites the Sarajevo Documentation Center Study and the International Criminal Tribunal,” and even states, weirdly, that “it seems highly probable that a majority of Muslims were killed by Serb forces (a fact that is documented in the studies he just cited). But then he writes, “a large number of Muslims were killed in battles with Croat forces, and an additional number of Muslims died during inter-Muslim combat.” He concludes: “At the same time, it is clear that the atrocity stories have been considerably exaggerated” (ps. 122-23), and he cites the total numbers of war dead, around 100,000, in contrast with early estimates of 200,000 or more. In fact according to credible demographic studies the numbers of Muslims killed in the civil war with the Croat nationalist forces and in inter-Muslim fighting around Bihac are minuscule compared to the deaths at the hands of the Serb nationalist forces, as the studies he cites demonstrate. But Gibbs is also guilty here of another moral obtuseness that is stunning. The discrepancies in the casualty figures are not a matter of the veracity of “atrocity stories,” just an inaccurate statistic. The atrocity stories–as told by foreign observers such as Roger Cohen, Chuck Sudetic, Norman Cigar, Edward Vulliamy, Peter Maass, Roy Gutman, and others, as well as by the Bosnians themselves, for example Kemal Kurspahic, Zlatko Dizdarevic, Dzevad Karahasan, Hasan Nuhanovic, Jasmina Dervisevic-Cesic, Emir Suljagic, the women in Swanee Hunt’s collection of testimonies This Was Not Our War: Bosnian Women Reclaiming the Peace, countless witnesses at the Hague tribunals, and others–are true. Gibbs cites a rather limited list of reportage of atrocities in an endnote, without anywhere in the book giving evidence of actually having read or considered it; he follows with a recommendation of “critical analyses of press coverage of the Bosnia war” to counter (how objective of him) war crimes deniers Diana Johnstone, the paid Serb nationalist propagandist Peter Brock, and other less than credible deniers (ps. 267-68). This is like citing “atrocity stories” of the Holocaust and then suggesting that for “critical analyses” the reader consult the “work” of David Irving, Robert Faurisson, and others.

    Gibbs consistently misrepresents and mishandles the scholarly literature and mishandles (or simply ignores) the witness literature, citing selectively (one can find many examples of this besides his handling of Caplan’s work), even citing a counterfeit UN report. He relies (selectively) on the very problematic Dutch government report (NIOD) and an anonymous CIA report rather than established scholarly literature, and turns to a bevy of denialist Serb-nationalist apologists, rather than authentic academic literature, to make his most insidious claims). He also contradicts his own argument, but it doesn’t matter.

    Gibbs’s book is built on shenanigans that a history prof should be teaching his students not to do. He is truly shameful.

    Malachi

    23/12/2010 at 19:44

  41. Interesting that Malachi ignores the central point made in Gibbs’s book, namely that this was an imperialist war. He says that nobody responding here has read his book. Maybe the fact that he ignored my post is a symptom of his reading comprehension. Gibbs’s main goal is to oppose wars based on “humanitarian intervention” and to demonstrate the clash of interests between American and German imperialism that gave the war its particular dynamics. People who work for a bellicose outfit like the Henry Jackson Society, and his apologist “Malachi”, are obviously uncomfortable with this defining aspect of Gibbs’s book and prefer to slander him as a genocide denier. Go to the Henry Jackson Society website and you can read a defense of continuing imperialist occupation of Iraq and the spread of imperialist investment. Obviously Hoare and his allies have no interest in contesting *within* the left for their particular Eustonian spin on things. Most people who got involved with this sordid project washed their hands of the left long ago, from Hitchens to Hoare. Sad to see such people adopting such a benign attitude toward imperialism, now that it is more discredited than ever.

    louisproyect

    24/12/2010 at 03:53

  42. Equally so louisproyect you ignore the same dynamics of international imperialism when it is inflicted upon the the population of BiH. In fact from reading your review(?) one asks at the end of it which war was that? True you refer to the fulcrum of Srebrenica but in relation to US involvement as if they were waiting in the wings for the right moment to send in the cavalry and whip them bad asses- and not seeing it for what it was; the culmination of the Serbian ambition to redefine the demographics of its neighbour and diminish the cultural presence of non Bosnian Serbs. Bosnia is lost in the back wash of the imperialist tide. ( said with the Red army choir humming in mass baritone in the background)
    No-one denies that the US and the puppet-masters of the realpolitik manipulate the affairs of others to maintain their strategic goals but forgive me for mentioning the individuals who were laid out to the slaughter of the aggressors both then and now. Your inability to separate the issues is perhaps why you didn’ actually review the book but used it to further a political statement.

    iko

    24/12/2010 at 09:23

  43. Apologies for arriving late to the debate – as Bob said, I was stranded in Berlin for three days by a cancelled flight, with limited internet access.

    Here is my response to Gibbs:

    http://greatersurbiton.wordpress.com/2010/12/24/first-check-their-sources-on-david-n-gibbs-and-shoddy-scholarship/

    Marko Attila Hoare

    24/12/2010 at 10:40

  44. Marko should mention some of his vested interests.

    e.g.

    http://www.bosniak.org/interview-dr-marko-attila-hoare-recipient-of-the-2010-cnab-award/

    ‘He worked as a Research Officer for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia’s Office of the Prosecutor in 2001, and participated in the drafting of the indictment of Slobodan Milosevic.’

    He is also a friend, apologist and hero-worshipper of the appalling Croatian General Martin Spegelj who plotted this before a shot was fired in the civil wars:

    ‘As for border posts, when border posts are disarmed, then they will be disarmed, all of them, as many as there are, but leave Albanians five bullets in their automatic rifles, and the rest locked up in cellars and given food and water if this goes on for a few days. As for this, if something happens, then just give instructions to all your people who you know. Kill extremists on the spot, in the street, in the compound, in barracks, anywhere. Just pistol and into the stomach. That will not be a war, it will be a civil war in which there is no mercy towards anyone, women or children, that doesn’t concern us. Into homes, family homes, quite simply grenades.’ (Špegelj)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_%C5%A0pegelj#.C5.A0pegelj_Tapes

    Erica Blair

    24/12/2010 at 12:06

  45. ‘Sad to see such people adopting such a benign attitude toward imperialism, now that it is more discredited than ever.’

    Much as people like Proyect and Gibbs would like to convince themselves and the world that the ‘socialist’ regime of Milosevic was the victim and target of Western ‘imperialism’, the sordid truth is that Western ‘imperialism’ colluded with Milosevic and aided and abetted his destruction of Bosnia. The dynamic was as follows:

    1) Milosevic’s Serbia attacked Bosnia.
    2) The Western alliance colluded in Serbia’s attack on Bosnia.
    3) The Proyect/Gibbs types did their best to sabotage any opposition in the West to the destruction of Bosnia, thereby facilitating the policy of their own, Western ‘imperialist’ governments.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    24/12/2010 at 15:07

  46. 1) Milosevic’s Serbia attacked Bosnia.

    Myth

    2) The Western alliance colluded in Serbia’s attack on Bosnia.

    Since no such attack took place (see 1) no such collusion took place.

    As my post above shows, Croats such as Spegelj were plotting bloody civil war before a shot was fired. Where did Spegelj get his guns from Marko?

    Erica Blair

    24/12/2010 at 18:37

  47. Hoare: “The Western alliance colluded in Serbia’s attack on Bosnia.”

    I’ve heard this nonsense before and it is hardly worth replying to. Here is what was really going on:

    NY Times, March 12, 2008
    War Crimes Trial Begins for Croatian General Who Worked With Americans
    By MARLISE SIMONS

    PARIS — A popular Croatian general who led a brutal operation that drove
    the Serbs out of Eastern Croatia near the end of the Balkans war went on
    trial in The Hague on Tuesday for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    Gen. Ante Gotovina, working closely with American advisers, was the
    commander of a military campaign in the summer of 1995 that put an end
    to the Serbian occupation of Eastern Croatia and forced more than
    150,000 Serbs to flee towns and villages where they had lived for
    generations.

    The four-day operation, in the Krajina region, was a turning point in
    the war, celebrated by Croatia as the heroic recapturing of its homeland
    and mourned by Serbia as the single largest event of “ethnic cleansing”
    of the 1991-1995 wars that broke up Yugoslavia.

    Prosecutors at the war crimes tribunal, while not disputing Croatia’s
    right to retake its land, have accused General Gotovina and his two
    co-defendants, Gens. Ivan Cermak and Mladen Markac, of crimes including
    knowingly shelling civilian targets, allowing their forces to go on
    violent rampages during and after the campaign, terrorizing civilians,
    and looting and burning Serbian homes.

    In his opening statement on Tuesday, the prosecutor, Alan Tieger, said
    more than 350 civilians were killed in August and September 1995, most
    of them not in the heat of the battle, but executed in revenge actions.

    Lawyers familiar with the trial say it may also shed more light on the
    little-known covert American role during that decisive Croatian
    counteroffensive against Serbia.

    United States military advisers, among them retired and active
    personnel, helped plan the operation, and Americans directed drone
    aircraft over the battle zone to gain real-time intelligence for
    Croatian forces, Croatian officials have said.

    The United States is not implicated in any of the criminal charges
    related to the operation, but some of its intelligence methods and
    sources may be disclosed, lawyers at the court said. In the summer of
    1995, the United States and other Western nations were seeking to roll
    back Serbia’s considerable military gains in Bosnia and Croatia in order
    to create a viable peace plan.

    Washington has taken a keen interest in the trial, and American
    diplomats have visited the United Nations war crimes tribunal in The
    Hague to discuss the case, a former senior prosecutor said.

    The importance of the trial to Croatia, where the three generals are
    considered heroes, is evident from the battery of defense lawyers. The
    defense team includes four lawyers with direct experience with the
    tribunal, which is unprecedented. One is Greg Kehoe, a former tribunal
    prosecutor who leads General Gotovina’s defense.

    Mr. Kehoe also worked for the United States as the top American lawyer
    at the Iraqi Special Tribunal in Baghdad, where he ran the large office
    that built criminal cases against Saddam Hussein and his top officials.

    In court, the three defendants, who have pleaded not guilty, sat side by
    side, flanked by United Nations security guards. As he arrived, General
    Gotovina smiled and waved at the public gallery, then he and others
    listened to translations of the proceedings. The trial could also be
    watched via video transmission from the court. Croatian television
    broadcast the events live.

    For the Croatian audience there may have been unwelcome disclosures in
    the prosecutors’ lengthy accounts of atrocities. Croatia’s nationalist
    news media have widely reported on actions by Serbs, often suppressing
    news from trials that cast Croatians in a bad light.

    Mr. Tieger, the prosecutor, detailed brutalities that he said were
    inflicted by the Croatian military and the police on Serbian villagers.
    He said they burned hundreds of homes, killed elderly people who could
    not leave, killed livestock and poisoned wells to make sure no Serb
    refugees returned. The operation left “a scarred wasteland of destroyed
    homes and villages,” he said.

    The prosecutor also cited comments from General Gotovina who, in the
    days after the operation, referred to his troops as “spoiled children”
    and “barbarians.”

    Lawyers at the court have said the three generals were the only men to
    be held accountable for the atrocities because the main political
    decision-makers, President Franjo Tudjman and his inner circle, are dead.

    After Mr. Tudjman’s death, Carla Del Ponte, the chief war crimes
    prosecutor at the time, said her office had been close to issuing an
    indictment in which Mr. Tudjman would be charged with heading a “joint
    criminal enterprise” that included expelling Serbs. On Tuesday, the
    prosecution quoted from Mr. Tudjman’s speeches in which he called
    Krajina Serbs “a cancer on the underbelly of Croatia.”

    The prosecution said it intended to call more than 130 witnesses. The
    trial is expected to last more than a year.

    louisproyect

    24/12/2010 at 22:23

  48. “The Proyect/Gibbs types did their best to sabotage any opposition in the West to the destruction of Bosnia, thereby facilitating the policy of their own, Western ‘imperialist’ governments”

    Anyone who lived in the UK or Germany in the 1990s could hardly say that the government or the media was supporting Serbia, quite the opposite in fact.

    Asteri

    24/12/2010 at 23:55

  49. How the Gibbs/Proyect types use the testimony of Western officials (politicians, diplomats, soldiers, etc.):

    1) Western officials’ testimony criticising Serbs = Western imperialist propaganda; proof of an anti-Serb bias on the part of the West.

    2) Western officials’ testimony criticising Muslims = To be accepted uncritically and at face value as proof that the Muslims were really to blame.

    But you can’t have it both ways. The more you cite Western officials who blame the Muslims, the more you undermine your own claim that Western officials were biased against the Serbs.

    Conversely, the more you dismiss all Western officials’ criticism of Serb behaviour on the grounds that it is imperialist propaganda, the more you forfeit the right to treat the same source as reliable when it involves criticism of Muslims.

    So, comrades, which is it to be ? Is the testimony of Western officials to be trusted, or not ?

    Marko Attila Hoare

    25/12/2010 at 04:27

  50. I depends Marko, on what you mean by “Western officials ” politicians are not exactly the most reliable sources as they have a tendency to stick to the party line, however if we find a western official who is going against the consensus of their party or organisation then we should take note of what they have to say, though obviously its not as simple as a few dissenters being right over the majority, but it can be quite revealing.

    Returning to Gibbs I don’t see much evidence that he holds particularly pro-Serb/anti-Muslim views.

    Asteri

    25/12/2010 at 18:43

  51. Returning to Gibbs I don’t see much evidence that he holds particularly pro-Serb/anti-Muslim views.

    As a matter of fact, I am pro-Serb while David is *not*. Anybody who reads the book with an unjaundiced eye will see Milosevic castigated over and over as being cut from the same cloth as the Croatian and Bosnian Muslim leaders. So the idea of referring to Proyect/Gibbs types is absurd.

    louisproyect

    25/12/2010 at 20:55

  52. ‘if we find a western official who is going against the consensus of their party or organisation then we should take note of what they have to say’

    Fine. Just don’t pretend there was an ‘anti-Serb, pro-Muslim/Croat’ consensus among Western officialdom. There wasn’t.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    25/12/2010 at 21:08

  53. ‘As a matter of fact, I am pro-Serb while David is *not*. ‘

    Yet funnily enough, you love his book and post in his defence.

    For the record, I don’t believe either Gibbs or Proyect is ‘pro-Serb’. They’re pro- something else.

    The poor Serbs – they’re the ones who suffer from phoney Western ‘friends’ who are quite ready to fight ‘Western imperialism’ to the last Serb.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    25/12/2010 at 21:23

  54. Of course I praise his book. I praise Chomsky all the time even though I disagree with his views on Marxism. You may not be a McCarthyite but you certainly have a tendency to draw rigid dichotomies.

    louisproyect

    26/12/2010 at 00:06

  55. ‘You may not be a McCarthyite but you certainly have a tendency to draw rigid dichotomies.’

    Or perhaps the differences between people like you just aren’t as significant as you like to think they are – think Judean People’s Front and People’s Front of Judea…

    Marko Attila Hoare

    26/12/2010 at 06:48

  56. I would like to begin by asking Mr. Hoare a number of questions, which I would like to have clarified before proceeding any further in this debate.

    First, I would like to bring to your attention some information I have found regarding a libel action, brought by Quintin Hoare and Branka Magas, both of whom are affiliated with the Bosnian Institute, with which you are also affiliated. Quentin Hoare is in fact the director of the Institute, according to its website. The block quote below was taken from the legal website “David Price, Solicitors and Advocates,” October 2003:

    “Quintin Hoare, Director of the Bosnian Institute and his wife Branka Magas, a historian, brought a libel action following the publication of a book called ‘The Balkans, nationalism and imperialism’ in which they were portrayed as apologists for the regime of the former Croatian president Franjo Tudjman. Tudjman was compared to Slobodan Milosevic in the opening chapter of the book. In a statement in open court, the publishers, author and editor apologised to the two claimants and admitted that in fact the pair had been critical of Tudjman both in their political activities and in print. The defendants will also pay damages and costs.”

    Please comment on the above.

    Second, it is my understanding that you have published articles pertaining to the Balkans in Frontpage magazine, edited by David Horowitz. Could you please comment? I cannot factcheck this point since Frontpage’s online archive is not functioning right now.

    I have several questions about the above: Who was the object of this law suit and what exactly did he say that triggered the suit? Did the individual in question write about the Bosnian Institute or its affiliates after this suit or did he cease writing on these topics? And is there anything else about this matter that posters at Modernityblog should know before we proceed any further with this debate?
    Second, it is my understanding that you have published articles pertaining to the Balkans in Frontpage magazine, edited by David Horowitz. Could you please comment? I cannot factcheck this point since Frontpage’s online archive is not functioning.

    David Gibbs

    26/12/2010 at 15:50

  57. Please disregard the previous posting and read this one instead.

    I would like to begin by asking Mr. Hoare a number of questions, which I would like to have clarified before proceeding any further in this debate.

    First, I would like to bring to your attention some information I have found regarding a libel action, brought by Quintin Hoare and Branka Magas, both of whom are affiliated with the Bosnian Institute, with which you are also affiliated. Quentin Hoare is in fact the director of the Institute, according to its website. The block quote below was taken from the legal website “David Price, Solicitors and Advocates,” October 2003:

    “Quintin Hoare, Director of the Bosnian Institute and his wife Branka Magas, a historian, brought a libel action following the publication of a book called ‘The Balkans, nationalism and imperialism’ in which they were portrayed as apologists for the regime of the former Croatian president Franjo Tudjman. Tudjman was compared to Slobodan Milosevic in the opening chapter of the book. In a statement in open court, the publishers, author and editor apologised to the two claimants and admitted that in fact the pair had been critical of Tudjman both in their political activities and in print. The defendants will also pay damages and costs.”

    I have several questions about the above: Who was the object of this law suit and what exactly did he say that triggered the suit? Did the individual in question write about the Bosnian Institute or its affiliates after this suit or did he cease writing on these topics? And is there anything else about this matter that posters at Modernityblog should know before we proceed any further with this debate?

    Second, it is my understanding that you have published articles pertaining to the Balkans in Frontpage magazine, edited by David Horowitz. Could you please comment? I cannot factcheck this point since Frontpage’s online archive is not functioning.

    David Gibbs

    26/12/2010 at 15:58

  58. With all due respect, Professor Gibbs, I fail to see what relevance your questions have to the matter under discussion. If you do not wish to proceed further in this debate, that is your decision.

    I have personally never sued anyone for libel, nor threatened to do so. Nor have I ever been involved in any libel suit in any way. If that was what was concerning you.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    26/12/2010 at 16:49

  59. The Hoare/Bragas lawsuit is discussed here:

    http://madammiaow.blogspot.com/2010/02/paul-foot-on-libel-law-and-lef.html

    Hmmm. This really stinks. I had no idea it ever occurred and I try to keep track of “the decent left”.

    louisproyect

    26/12/2010 at 17:41

  60. Sarah Correia: In this post the author, Professor Gibbs, insinuates that Marko is much more powerful than he is. In fact, in a profession that is increasingly uncertain and precarious, unlike so many academics who avoid conflicts even at the cost of sacrificing their values, because one never knows what the future brings, Marko does not hesitate to get involved in polemics, some of which are extremely poisonous.

    Unlike Professor Gibbs who lives in the comfort of a tenure position, that is a job for life.

    Ignoring the speculation regarding the “comfort” or otherwise that Gibb’s enjoys, Correia’s portrayal of Hoare as a Rodolfo-like idealist starving in his garret for his ideals requires a little expansion. For a variety a reasons, a number of journalists and commentators have decided that Kosovo was the ‘good war’. The most notable include: Francis Wheen (Guardian, Private Eye, Evening Standard); David Aaronovitch (Times, The Independent); Nick Cohen (The Observer) and, Oliver Kamm (The Times). Their interest in Kosovo and the FRY was very much secondary to other concerns, principally the “new political alignment” following the 2001 Gulf War, though for Kamm his Balkans interest is almost exclusively about his ongoing spat with Chomsky. Whatever the reasons, these hacks found it useful to spout occasionally on the Balkans, and Hoare – whose Eustonite / HJS credentials were impeccable – became their guru. A one-stop-shop for all things Balkan. And, like the rest of the UK press, these hacks couldn’t get enough of it, i.e. Serbs v. bad, others v. good. I really don’t think it could have done Hoare’s career much harm to be the ‘Johnny Balkans’ for this bunch of celebrity hacks, and I’m sure it offered many opportunities unavailable to a purely, er, academic academic.

    Gibbs is right to note that Hoare will not tolerate any deviation from the ‘standard’ (i.e. his) narrative. There is plenty about Racak that suggests at the very least controversy. Not for Hoare – see “Guardian newspaper flirts with Balkan atrocity denial – again…”.

    By the way, if “Marko does not hesitate to get involved in polemics” was the case, then he would allow comments on his website.

    frunobulax

    26/12/2010 at 19:26

  61. Frunobulax, anyone can create a blog and define its rules. Some people allow all kinds of comments, others activelly moderate comments (like Modernity), others do not accept comments for a variety of reasons. While I do enjoy a good comment thread, I am aware by my own experience of how time consuming and difficult it can be to moderate comments. But as anyone can create their own blogs, the absence of comments in a blog does not curtail debate, thus your argument about Marko’s blog is not valid.

    Regarding your first comment, I don’t really get your point, but in case there is any implied message, I know you do read my blog, and independently of how you appreciate it, I’m sure you would be fair enough to recognise that I have an interest in this region for its own sake and independent of wider geopolitical considerations. Anyway, there are no rudolfos in this story, and this is not about waging crusades through polemics. Debating and getting involved in polemics is a normal thing to do in a democracy. I am only sorry that the ones involving the Balkans are so poisonous. But when one gets involved in them, one should not play victim and complain about thought police and mccarthy, etc, as Professor Gibbs did. It is ridiculous and absurd. Of course in a polemic one gets the support of some people who identify themselves as like minded and the antipathy of others, so what?

    But you are right when you point out that for many people the Balkans are just a topic upon which they can elaborate their own world-views. That in itself is not a sin. It is legitimate to do so, as long as people who do it make an effort to learn with an open mind and to accept that maybe they will also learn things that will change their world-views.

    Sarah Correia

    26/12/2010 at 21:13

  62. Prof. David Biggs said: “Thus Hoare’s claim – that I suppressed information on Serb atrocities in 1992 – is baseless.”

    No it’s not. Your book does not mention the First Srebrenica Massacre that occurred with the first fall of Srebrenica in the first day of the Bosnian war. In your book, we don’t find mention of Serb massacres of Bosniak (Muslim) civilians in villages like Glogova, Zaklopaca, Hranca, Suha, etc… no mention of Serbian detention camps around Srebrenica, like Susica camp (8000 Bosnian Muslims were confined and tortured there), no mention of prison camp in the Serb village of Kravica (where Serbs raped, tortured and killed more than 300 Muslims in 1992 – well before the 1995 genocide), no mention of rape camps, like the one established by Serbs in the mucipality of Srebrenica — the Sase camp… Too many omission and misrepresentations, coupled with a deliberate falsification of history (denial of genocide) makes Prof. David Biggs’ “research” highly problematic and Mr Gibbs, rather, an unreliable source for any serious debate or consideration.

    Mark H.

    26/12/2010 at 22:39

  63. ‘I really don’t think it could have done Hoare’s career much harm to be the ‘Johnny Balkans’ for this bunch of celebrity hacks, and I’m sure it offered many opportunities unavailable to a purely, er, academic academic.’

    Journalists don’t give jobs to academics, or publish their books and articles, or write references for them. So no, it does not particularly benefit my career to have journalists liking me or citing my work. In fact, it does not make much career sense to do what I do, and be politically outspoken or write negative reviews; the ‘sensible’ career strategy would be to avoid making enemies. Because it could be Professor Gibbs, or someone else I’ve crossed swords with, or who disagrees strongly with my views, reviewing my manuscript for a publisher, or participating in a panel that receives my job or grant application. Your real careerist academic will be inoffensive and suck up to everyone.

    However little respect I might have for Gibbs’s book or for his politics, the fact is that he is a real person who writes under his real name, and that he has put forward a position in his book to which one can respond. There is thus some purpose to responding to him.

    I make an honourable exception for individuals like Modernity and Bob from Brockley, who are anonymous, but who use their anonymity responsibly, and are invariably polite, correct and good natured. But your typical anonymous poster is more like Frunobulax – someone who abuses their anonymity to make petty and malicious ad hominem attacks on non-anonymous individuals; attacks that they would not have the courage to make if they were writing under their real name.

    Debating with such people is mostly a waste of time and effort. Other bloggers are welcome to open up their comments boxes for repetitive and hate-filled exchanges with swarms of Frunobulaxes. But I have better things to do with my time. I’m not interested in what they have to say, and I’m sure my readers – the ones I care about – aren’t interested either.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 00:06

  64. Response to the critique of David Gibbs’s book First Do No Harm by Marko Attila Hoare.

    I am neither a historian nor a specialist in the Balkans (my doctorate is in Comparative Literature) – so will not enter the battle of the footnotes. I am interested in what happened in Former Yugoslavia because I was born in Bihac, Bosnia of “White” Russian émigrés. I am also interested because of the participation in the wars of my adopted country, the United States. But having grown up on four continents as a result of wars and revolutions, I do not have strong feelings of nationhood, but very strong feelings about the horrors of war – anywhere.

    In an effort to understand the causes of the wars in Former Yugoslavia I began to read widely on the subject. The majority of the 20+ books dealing with the recent past I read struck me as patently one-sided: the Serbs were fascists and Milosevic was the devil incarnate. Horrors were widely reported, and I did not doubt them. But the unanimity of the prevailing positions struck me as suspect.

    As I pursued my education, David Gibbs’ book stood out from the rest as eminently even-handed. I will not enter the controversy of what constitutes “genocide.” The killing of civilians (or war prisoners) is a crime against humanity, no matter the numbers, or who does it or what we call it. Maybe those who identify with Bosniak victims at Srebrenica and elsewhere experience David Gibbs’ “academic” approach as “insensitive” to their particular pain. Of course their pain deserves to be validated.

    But so does the pain of others who have suffered in this conflict. The bombing of Serbia by NATO was also pretty destructive: A systematic attack on its infrastructure, with a few “smart rockets” targeting the church of St. Mark the Evangelist, the Rakovic monastery, and the media center with its Children Theater, in Belgrade. Well, only some 20 journalists, a night watchman, and a cleaning woman were killed at the media center– so it’s O.K. to bomb with godlike impunity from above? And how many Serbs were killed or “ethnically cleansed” in Knin during the American-organized “Operation Storm,” and how many Albanians as well as Serbs died from NATO bombs in Kosovo?

    This is where David Gibbs’ book is especially useful for focusing on the responsibilities of outside forces. Outside forces have always dominated the Balkans. First Rome and its eastern and western sequels divided the area into Orthodox and Catholic. Then the Turkish invasion of the fifteenth century added the option of Islam. Bogomil “heresies,” which questioned the concepts of the trinity and the sacraments were persecuted by both Catholic and Orthodox hierarchies – so many Bosniaks converted to Islam because it offered a more tolerant religious umbrella. But the Turkish invasion was resisted by the Orthodox Serbs and by the Catholic Austro-Hungarian Empire (which included what is now Croatia). Thus what is routinely described as the “ethnic” divisions of Former Yugoslavia should be more properly described as differences of religious tradition.

    When the Turkish and the Austro-Hungarian Empires collapsed after WWI, Yugoslavia was free at last to become the country of the South Slavs – regardless of religion. But time was short and WWII divided the country once again. Croatia welcomed the Germans, the Grand Mufty of Jerusalem reviewed the Bosniak troops of the SS, and Albania sided with fascist Italy. The Serbs sided with the Allies, and were bombed, occupied, and brutalized by the Nazis. Prince Peter fled into exile to London, Draza Mihailovic’s Chetinks took to the mountains of Western Serbia – while Croat/Slovene Josip Broz (Tito) gathered his Communist resistance in the highlands of Bosnia.

    If the outside world is quick to forget (or downright ignorant of) the past, local memories linger on. General Mladic’s parents, for instance, were both killed by Ustasa (the Croat Nazis) during WW II. Does this excuse his murderous behavior in the Bosnian conflict? Not in my book.

    WW II was not over yet when Winston Churchill, FDR and Stalin met in Yalta to divvy up the Balkans. The line between the “East” and the “West” of the Cold War was drawn right through Yugoslavia. Since Tito had emerged as the winner (to a large extent because Churchill had switched Allied support from Draza to him) the country was declared a case of 50/50.

    Tito rebelled against Stalin in 1948 and walked the tightrope of the non-aligned movement. But he died in 1980, the year Ronald Reagan became the president of the United States. Here history and academic detachment yield to politics because the past is too close to our own present – and words like “neocon” or Mr. Hoare’s “the sort of bone-headed ultra-left activist who would turn to Gibbs’ book for information” pop up.

    Still, “politics” is a fact of life, and I do believe in political engagement. Mr. Hoare’s “emotional attachment” to Croatia is understandable. Unfortunately, as in religious or political conviction, love can easily turn to hatred of the “other,” especially under conditions of stress and insecurity. At least David Gibbs’ confronts the role of his own country in “doing harm.” Mr. Hoare is also quick to dismiss as “conspiracy theory” the notion that “the fall in the price of coffee” could be a destabilizing factor in a country like Rwanda. I have not read Michel Chossudovsky, but was “bone-headed” enough to consult sources provided by an inter-faith group. In Latin America and Africa and Vietnam coffee was imposed as a monoculture by the International Monetary Fund to pay off international loans. When the price of coffee fell worldwide, and coffee had displaced local food staples, starvation followed.

    If Mr. Hoare has turned his back on his earlier “left” persona, I too have moved away from the loyalties of my parents, which happened to be monarchist. Paradoxically, however, it is my American experience of freedom of inquiry and expression which leads me to be willing to learn EVEN from the Marxist critique of Capitalism. Now that the whole world is suffering the Great Recession, who will deny the “effectiveness” of the carrot of loans and the stick of austerity exactions in the hidden hand of the free market?

    Little countries like Former Yugoslavia suffered this first: The severe inflation of 1987, 1988 and 1989 was a crucial factor in creating the instability and stress subsequently exploited by he likes of Tudjman and Milosevic. Did they not both conspire to partition Bosnia? As Slavenka Mikulic puts it in her Café Europa, they “haggled over every town and village.” My Belgian-born husband and I have traveled through Former Yugoslavia in 2006 (I am still reasonably fluent in Serbo-Croatian even though we left the country when I was 6 years old). On several occasions war scars I had been led to believe as caused by JNA (the federal army) turned out to be the handiwork of Croats (in Mostar and Bihac in particular).

    But the Holy Alliance of the “international community” also found its opportunities in a Yugoslavia that is dismembered rather than whole. It is here that David Gibbs’ argument strikes me as most persuasive. It fits the logic of American imperialism, which has so thoroughly taken over from Spanish and English and French and Austrian and German and Russian/Soviet imperialisms. This logic drives it to be the sole and unquestioned champion of the “international community” by displacing the mandate of the United Nations and challenging Europe’s efforts at mediation. NATO had been formed to “keep the Soviets out, America in, and Germany down.” Now the Soviets are definitely “out,” Germany is definitely “up” – and America insists on staying “in.” I am grateful to David Gibbs for showing in specific detail how the perennial “grand game” is played.

    Why should the American hegemon bother with little Yugoslavia? It didn’t at first. “We have no dog in that fight” stated the first President Bush’s Secretary of State James Baker. But President Clinton, being the gentle sort, felt sorry for the plight of Bosnia, and stepped forward to its defense. REALLY? Empires, like corporations, are NOT people. People love and hate and suffer. Empires feed on division and the “leaders” who identify with them redraw maps for their own convenience. They pursue power the way corporations pursue profit. The two are, of course, intimately related in the New World Order. Even well-intentioned President Obama seems powerless to stop the juggernaught.

    Mr. Hoare places his bet on “Western imperialism.” Does he really believe in its “mission civilizatrice?” Or does he find it easier to side with the winners? For the sake of my own American children and grand children, because empires can be as transient as tribal sand paintings – and because speaking truth to power strikes me as the right course of action – I prefer to join David Gibbs in the job of truth-telling – while we still can.

    Galina De Roeck

    27/12/2010 at 01:13

  65. Marko’s problem is that he writes such drivel. Take his Greater Surbiton post of 30th June 2010. In this post he sort of celebrates that a mass grave had be “found” in Serbia and that the organ trafficking allegations against the KLA lacked evidence and “had been laid to rest”. Since he wrote this no bodies have been found in the alleged grave site and the organ trafficking claims are stronger than ever. Neither of the these misjudgements have been acknowledged in later posts to his blog.

    PJD

    27/12/2010 at 01:41

  66. My apologies to readers of this blog for the typos in my last post–I am new at this, and I sent a draft by mistake (to which no one has responded substantively—my feelings are not hurt). I hope people will get through the too-lengthy sentences and some punctuation typos and the like to appreciate my point.

    RE the claim made by Louis Proyect (or should I call him “Louis”?) I hadn’t noticed that he has read and reviewed David Gibbs’s book. I should say that my original statement was that “Unlike the other people responding to this blog, I have read Professor Gibbs’s book and followed up extensively on his sources (and his abuse of sources).” Since Comrade Proyect thinks Gibbs’s book is excellent, he clearly could not have spent any time honestly looking at his friend’s misuse of sources.

    Now that Marko Hoare has sent his reply to David Gibbs, I think my own assertions of Gibbs’s lack of academic integrity are illustrated. But this is only the tip of an iceberg. And Gibbs, rather than responding to anything substantively, throws up a smokescreen about a law suit having nothing to do with this debate and a question and a question about Hoare’s publishing something on a rightwing sight, Frontline—here’s a guy who raise the issue of McCarthyism sounding a lot like prosecutor Vyshinksy, I must say!

    A comment on each of Gibbs’s “questions”:

    1. RE the lawsuit, one can find info on this at the Media Law newsletter at http://www.lawyers-media.com/_uploads/newsletter/42.htm (and I quote):

    “Quintin Hoare and Branka Magas v Alex Callinicos, Lindsey German and Bookmarks Publications Ltd (Eady J, 6 October 2003)

    “Quintin Hoare, Director of the Bosnian Institute and his wife Branka Magas, a historian, brought a libel action following the publication of a book called ‘The Balkans, nationalism and imperialism’ in which they were portrayed as apologists for the regime of the former Croatian president Franjo Tudjman. Tudjman was compared to Slobodan Milosevic in the opening chapter of the book. In a statement in open court, the publishers, author and editor apologised to the two claimants and admitted that in fact the pair had been critical of Tudjman both in their political activities and in print. The defendants will also pay damages and costs.”

    Hey, tough shit. I am crying over these people. Too bad Callinicos, et al. were sued and lost, but they did make this stuff up. Branka Magas and Quintin Hoare no apologists for Tudjman. See for example her obituary of Tudjman in 1999, in The Telegraph (ar http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/obituary-franjo-tudjman-1132142.html), which starts with these lines:

    “As the one who led Croatia to independence, Tudjman secured a special place in the country’s history. Yet history is also bound to judge him harshly, because of his cavalier attitude to the country’s true interests, because of his policy towards neighbouring Bosnia-Herzegovina, and not least because of his persistent hostility to Croatia’s citizens of Serb and Bosnian descent – all of which has contributed to the country’s present international isolation.

    “Death arguably saved him from indictment by the Hague Tribunal, for his overall command responsibility for war crimes committed by Zagreb’s proxy forces in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the unpunished brutalities visited upon defenceless Serbs who have remained in, or tried to return to, Croatia.

    The work of the Bosnian Institute is great source of information on the crimes of Tudjman, in fact. I hope people will check it out. Hoare comments on some of this in his blog inhis post, “Richard Seymour’s ‘The Liberal Defence of Murder,’” at http://greatersurbiton.wordpress.com/category/anti-semitism/.

    I happen to favor the American laws, which means one can get away with any kind of misrepresentation of other people’s views, but I don’t know what any of this has to do with the issues being contested in this blog.

    RE Gibbs’s second question. Why does Gibbs bother to bring up Hoare’s association with a rightist publication, when he himself writes in his book that though he considers himself on the left, “I have learned much from some conservative writers as Christopher Layne, Paul Craig Roberts, Ted Galen Carpenter, and Jude Wanniski. I hope that this book will appeal to readers on both sides of the spectrum” (p. x). And in fact Gibbs cites some really rightwing fascist pro-Serb nationalist propagandists to make his argument.

    So, when Comrade Gibbs builds his own red-brown front, we are supposed to consider him open-minded, but if Hoare writes something for a conservative magazine, and if he says on his blog, for example, “I have been variously accused of being a neoconservative, Trotskyite and Croat nationalist and a supporter of Islamism and Western imperialism. Depending on how you define these terms, some or all of this may be accurate,” we are supposed to reject his scholarship on the Balkans or any or every claim he makes?

    Again, the irony of accusing others of McCarthyism and then pulling this nonsense is dizzying! Gibbs is simply evading dealing with those issues with a cowardly, dishonest reference to things completely extraneous to Marko Hoare’s critique.

    I am still looking forward to Gibbs’s response to Hoare’s critique of his horrid apologetic for the culminating genocidal massacre at Srebrenica. As is clear to anyone who has seriously looked at this history of Srebrenica, the mass murder and expulsions in that entire region are the story, not just the final and most dramatic episode. And the stories from other parts of Bosnia, from around Bihac and Prijedor, for example, are also chilling. One sees nothing about this story, because it would prove that there was a clear plan, going back to 1990, as Article II of the 1948 Genocide Convention describes the crime, “to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such: (a) Killing members of the group; (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; … [and] (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group….” This project, masterminded by Milosevic and carried out by his minions in Bosnia (as had occurred in Croatia) was achieved largely as planned.

    Readers of this blog should look at Norman Cigar’s Genocide in Bosnia (Reveille Books/Texas A&M University Press, 1995); Cigar and Paul Williams, Indictment at The Hague: The Milosevic Regime and Crimes of the Balkan Wars (NYU Press, 2002); Michael Sells, The Bridge Betrayed (University of California Press, 1996); Isabelle Wesselingh and Arnaud Vaulerin, Raw Memory: Prijedor, Laboratory of Ethnic Cleansing (Saqi Books, 2005); Francis Boyle, The Bosnian People Charge Genocide (Aletheia Press, 1996); the two-volume report from Helsinki Watch, War Crimes in Bosnia (1993), and the journalism and witness testimony I listed in my previous post—for a start. Another book of great use is James Gow’s The Serbian Project and Its Adversaries: A Strategy of War Crimes (2003), which Gibbs cherry-picks for some detail but clearly has not read in any meaningful way, makes it clear that the plan (or project) and criminal pattern the were in place.

    I want to add a point to Hoare’s devastating response to Gibbs, which he does not mention, perhaps, because it is beyond the scope of his point. He does not say a couple of things worth mentioning about the Cutileiro negotiations: 1) Even if Izetbegovic repudiated the Carrington/Cutileiro plan because of some signal from the US, the plan was a disaster, even if it probably seemed a lot less horrible than what came later. It affirmed nationalist a nationalist, racist, and separatist discourse that had been established by the Serbian aggressors and their Croatian imitators with the idea of dividing a place that could not possibly be divided without war. 2) Gibbs’s portrayal of this absurd plan as a last chance for peace the US and the Bosnian government undermined is a poisonous political myth (usually pushed by Croatian and Serbian nationalists), and typical of his strategy in the book. In Gibbs’s universe, the failure of this feckless plan explains, and therefore allows Gibbs (indirectly, of course) to condone the Serb war against the almost completely unarmed Bosnian Muslims. He blames Izetbegovic and the US, leaving out of the responsibility of the actual perpetrators of these brutal crimes, as they carried out the threats they had publicly made, putting into action plans that stretched back into 1990-91.

    No doubt the strange international court decisions calling this one horrific massacre after the fall of the Srebrenica enclave a genocide without seeing it within a context of Serb nationalist crimes across of Bosnia has made it helpful for apologists like Gibbs to make their absurd claims. A person who knows nothing about the larger history–or who may be actively looking to maintain the (vulgar) leftist paradigm that very evil in the world must be the outcome of active US imperial conspiracies (this is clearly the view of “unrepentant” Stalinist “LouisProyect”)–may be fooled. But hardly anyone else is.

    Proyect writes: “Gibbs’s main goal is to oppose wars based on ‘humanitarian intervention’ and to demonstrate the clash of interests between American and German imperialism that gave the war its particular dynamics.” In fact Gibbs’s thesis about German intervention is utterly fatuous (and dishonest). As for the Henry Jackson Society, I have nothing to do with it, and do not read its pages. I spent my entire youth opposing and resisting the US genocidal war in Indochina, and later the US-sponsored genocidal wars in Central America, so Scoop Jackson is not one of my peeps.

    From my point of view, Proyect and Gibbs give the possibilities of a humane, independent left a very bad name. It was the Bosnian government that, however imperfectly it was able to practice its stated ideals during war and genocide, that most embraced the Enlightenment ideals that are to be found in what is best in Marx and some Marxist traditions (for example the anti-Leninist, antiauthoritarian ultraleft tradition, to which Hoare is not fair when he calls Proyect and his Stalinoid ilk “ultralefts”).

    For a different perspective people might check out the Balkan Witness website and also the brave solidarity work of the (leftist) projects Workers Aid to Bosnia and Workers Aid to Kosovo (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Workers%27_Aid_for_Bosnia) to get an idea of what real leftwing solidarity looks like. You can also see from those positions that Gibbs, Proyect, et al. don’t own the franchise on anti-imperialism; while we it’s a truism that Western/international involvement in the Balkans was cynical and self-serving and in many ways destructive, this does not confirm the paranoid fantasies of these conspiratorialists. (Bob, read Richard Caplan’s and Michael Libal’s books, also Mark Almond’s Europe’s Backyard War, Catherine Samary’s Yugoslavia Dismembered (Monthly Review Press, no less, how low they have fallen!), Branka Magas’s The Destruction of Yugoslavia (Verso, how they fell, too!), and Christopher Bennett’s Yugoslavia’s Bloody Collapse and you’ll get a clear idea of how ludicrous Gibbs’s thesis really is.

    The fake radicalism of Gibbs, Proyect and other such dogmats is just fundamentalist, fossil Stalinism. It disseminates a terrible calumny against the victims of fascism in the Balkans, including the victims of Milosevic’s war machine at Srebrenica (also, a bloody imperialist crime). I hope people see through it.

    malachi

    27/12/2010 at 02:22

  67. @Frunobulax
    “The most notable include: Francis Wheen (Guardian, Private Eye, Evening Standard); David Aaronovitch (Times, The Independent); Nick Cohen (The Observer) and, Oliver Kamm (The Times). Their interest in Kosovo and the FRY was very much secondary to other concerns, principally the “new political alignment” following the 2001 Gulf War, though for Kamm his Balkans interest is almost exclusively about his ongoing spat with Chomsky.”

    I think there is more to it than that, the people you’ve mentioned are from a generation that was defined by the memory of WWII, because of this their always searching for the next battle between good and evil, which leads to finding Nazism around every corner. I think this was why the Yugoslav wars became such a defining moment, they had been starved of a proper conflict on European soil for so long they really went with it with vigour, it was a conflict they could really sink their teeth into and was even described as Spanish civil war for their generation. I very much doubt that Cohen or Aaronovitch had even heard of Bosnia, Slovenia or Kosovo before the 1990s as international affairs is not their strong point, but your right that they just call upon the Yugoslav wars for a bit ideological grand standing. NC in particular will readily (with out evidence0 denounce Chomsky as a Srebrenica denier then quote Gen. Lewis MacKenzie as an authority on the Israeli conflict. Really none of the people you mentioned have any real moral authority to condemn others considering the far worse things they support/justify as part as the latest crusade, and in the case of Kamm, he cynically manipulates its memory for his own world view. The Yugoslav wars were where British ‘left-wing’ interventionism and warmongering was born and those wars will continue to be cited as a defining moment in western history, it makes a big difference when the war is fought closer to home than in some faraway third world country.

    Asteri

    27/12/2010 at 02:48

  68. In fact Gibbs’s thesis about German intervention is utterly fatuous (and dishonest).

    I say, Malachi, old thing, some of your text seems to have disappeared in the ether after you hit the send button. This appears to be the concluding sentence of some meaty analysis. Of course, it is entirely possible that you are just name-calling and choose to ignore the mountain of evidence implicating Germany in the break-up of Yugoslavia. Also, with respect to your activism against the wars in Vietnam and Central America, the same is true of Christopher Hitchens. Interesting how the Balkan wars have turned people like you into such reactionaries.

    louisproyect

    27/12/2010 at 03:43

  69. Why is my comment still awaiting moderation?

    Mark H.

    27/12/2010 at 03:49

  70. Prof. David Biggs said: “Thus Hoare’s claim – that I suppressed information on Serb atrocities in 1992 – is baseless.”

    No it’s not “totally baseless.” Your book does not mention the First Srebrenica Massacre that occurred with the first fall of Srebrenica in the first day of the Bosnian war. In your book, we don’t find mention of Serb massacres of Bosniak (Muslim) civilians in villages like Glogova, Zaklopaca, Hranca, Suha, etc… no mention of Serbian detention camps around Srebrenica, like Susica camp (8000 Bosnian Muslims were confined and tortured there), no mention of prison camp in the Serb village of Kravica (where Serbs raped, tortured and killed more than 300 Muslims in 1992 – well before the 1995 genocide), no mention of rape camps, like the one established by Serbs in the mucipality of Srebrenica — the Sase camp… Too many omission and misrepresentations, coupled with a deliberate falsification of history (denial of genocide) makes Prof. David Biggs’ “research” highly problematic and Mr Gibbs, rather, an unreliable source for any serious debate or consideration.

    Mark H.

    27/12/2010 at 03:51

  71. This is what a socialist blogger (whose views I do not share) has to say about the German myth.

    “Complete and utter fiction, and utterly illogical. Germany was *already* the number one economic power in united Yugoslavia, it was already the biggest foreign investor, in Slovenia, in Croatia, *and in Serbia.* The Yugoslav dinar was pegged to the German mark. The idea that Germany of all imperialist powers would want to “break up” a country that it economically dominated, to create new state borders between its economic concerns, break-up of the market, turmoil, war etc, is inconceivably stupid. That is why it did not happen: As late as June 1991, just before the Croatian referendum, and thus just before the onset of a 6-month devastating attack on Croatia by the massively armed Yugoslav army, Genscher had given one of the strongest speeches advocating the retention of a united Yugoslavia to the Berlin Conference of CSCE leaders. The CSCE issued a statement in Berlin expressing their “support for democratic development, unity and territorial integrity of Yugoslavia,” stressing that “it is only for the peoples of Yugoslavia themselves to decide on the country’s future,” and “the existing constitutional disputes should be remedied, and that the way out of the present difficult impasse should be found without recourse to the use of force and in conformity with legal and constitutional procedures.””

    And:

    “Now, given that Yugoslavia was by definition a federation of equal nations, hands up how many people think that the Croatian republic would have chosen to remain in such a “federation” in which the army had just bombed it to pieces for 6 months? Especially since they had already voted to escape Serboslavia even before the onslaught? Obviously, no-one. So there is no way Germany advocating recognition in December 1991 could “break up” Yugoslavia which was already irrevocably broken to pieces. As for Collon’s assertion above that German recognition would lead to war, this is the kind of hoodwinking that the revisionist set has used for ages, assume people don’t know anything so you can bullshit them. The full-scale devastating war began in June 1991, was ending in December 1991, Germany recognised the 2 republics on December 23 1991, its only sin being that was 3 weeks ahead of schedule for the whole EC (and Russia) to recognise them, bringing the war to an end. Facts are stubborn things.”

    http://mihalisk.blogspot.com/2006/07/reply-to-milosevic-test-your-media.html

    Riley

    27/12/2010 at 05:48

  72. Marko Atilla Hoare and the Silencing of Debate

    In this discussion, one of my key allegations is that the writings of Marko Atilla Hoare constitute an extended exercise in McCarthyism, which silences debate and suppresses free discussion. Some of the posters on Modernityblog express skepticism of this claim, noting that my target is just a humble academic.

    But Hoare does indeed use McCarthyite tactics: First, there is the extensive use of denunciatory rhetoric such as “genocide denial” and the like, which is used frivolously against those who challenge his views on the Balkans. His accusations are made with little regard for factual accuracy. If his opponents respond forcefully, there is the ever-present danger of a libel suit. Such techniques have been effective in silencing previous criticism of Hoare’s colleagues at the Bosnian Institute (as we have seen in postings to this blog). Criticism is also inhibited by the risk of denunciation in the US and UK mass media, where Hoare and his colleagues enjoy excellent connections.

    What an infringement on free speech! Hoare freely denounces his opponents; he does so with sensationalist language and no accountability. But if his opponents seek to defend themselves, there is the implied threat that Hoare may sue them for libel, just as his colleagues have done, under UK libel laws that have achieved worldwide renown for their repressive character.

    Hoare himself insists that he has no plans for any libel suits. However, his colleagues at the Bosnian Institute clearly have used this technique to silence criticism, and the danger is clear.

    The result has been a “debate” that takes place in a climate of fear and intimidation – nicely captured in the language that Hoare himself uses, stating that his opponents are like “lambs to the slaughter,” that they will “sacrifice any reputations they might have,” that Hoare himself will undertake a “demolition” of my work etc. This sounds more like dialogue from The Godfather than open debate.

    Sarah Correia claims she has never seen a negative review of Hoare’s work. Is this surprising?

    On Factual Accuracy and Accountability

    In an open discussion, writers making repeated errors lose credibility, thus establishing a system of accountability. This process has become corrupted with regard to the Balkans, however, where discussion is regularly silenced. Hoare himself seems to have little interest in the accuracy of his claims; and he shows this lack of interest in his review of my book (Greater Surbiton, 6/12/10), which was based for the most part on factual errors, as noted in my original posting.

    Hoare has now written a reply to my posting (Greater Surbiton, 24/12/10), which defends his claims; but in the process of doing this, he repeatedly contradicts himself. In his original review, he stated that Gibbs “ignored all the existing works that undermine his thesis,” including Hoare’s own publications, which were supposedly ignored in my book. In his recent reply, however, he discusses at length the places where my book does indeed discuss his publications, thus contradicting his previous claim. Clearly Hoare’s original claim – that I had ignored his scholarship — was a factual error, just as I alleged. And Hoare himself now provides paragraph after paragraph of evidence confirming this error.

    Hoare’s repeated factual errors and his failure to correct these errors – now in multiple postings — is deeply troubling.

    On “Genocide Denial”

    One of Hoare’s key accusations is that I am a “genocide denier,” a term he uses repeatedly. Frankly, this claim to be so utterly ridiculous that I had not bothered to discuss it before. But I will do so now.

    Let me start on a personal note: As a practicing Jew from a refugee family (my father was born in Berlin), I find Hoare’s politicization and abuse of this term to be extremely odious.

    The origin of Hoare’s charge is an endnote in my book (p. 281), in which I presented an extended quote from the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal. The quote criticizes the 2003 Krstic decision by the international tribunal at The Hague, which had originally defined the Srebrenica massacre as a case of genocide. The cited article strongly implies that the court had erred in defining that massacre as genocide. Based on the evidence in the article, my endnote concluded that Srebrenica was closer to a war crime than to a genocide. This endnote became the basis of Hoare’s entire claim that I am a “genocide denier.”

    If I cannot cite and agree with an article in a Yale law review without being attacked like this, then there is something profoundly wrong with the way this discussion is taking place.

    Note that Hoare does not challenge the analysis from the article that I cite. Instead he silences discussion by hurling the epithet “genocide denier,” as if this settles the matter. Hoare’s method is based on personal denunciation, instead of analysis.

    Can my point about McCarthyism be made any clearer?

    David Gibbs

    27/12/2010 at 06:54

  73. @Louis

    Your knowledge of the Yugoslav wars is poor to say the least, a few quotes from your blog.

    “Perhaps the most obvious recent example of this is the wars in Yugoslavia, which have generated very little in the way of serious analysis except from Diana Johnstone or Edward Herman. ”

    You consider two genocide deniers with no credibility to be exceptional; apparently two obscure racists trump forensics, court verdicts and eyewitness reports in your view, this is a classic genocide denial tactic ignore the evidence but focus on the fiction produced by your fellow revisionists.

    ” As a measure of their isolation, both have been attacked as “holocaust revisionists”

    That is merely a statement of fact; both are genocide deniers, Hermann even denies the Rwanda genocide. Praising their ugly work is roughly the equivalent of using rense.org as a source.

    “While some elements of the left such as Counterpunch, Monthly Review and ZNet have not succumbed to the enormous pressures of the bourgeois press and well-funded NGO’s and think-tanks to demonize the Serbs, others have.”

    All three magazines are fringe hate organizations; all three promote genocide denial. As for the “demonize the serbs” that is merely a pathetic strawman Bosnian genocide deniers employ; they see an act on some Serbs as an attack on all Serbs.

    “In the latest issue of Links, Karadjis holds forth on the arrest of Radovan Karadzic, the Serb warlord who is held to be qualitatively worse than all the other warlords in Yugoslavia, including the Muslim Naser Oric whose anti-Serb pogroms near Srebrenica unleashed Karadzic’s bloodlust revenge.”

    So much hyperbole in one place; your use of the word “pogroms” is an attempt to equate Bosniak self defense to anti-Semitism, a deluded argument especially since anti-Semitism is a component of Serb nationalism.

    “Oric was just freed of all charges by the ICTY in The Hague in keeping with its tendency to judge Serb killers as more unequal than other killers.”

    Ah let me guess you will attempt to argue that Oric “slaughtered thousands” right? Reality says otherwise.

    “”First of all, the OTP is always very careful in the use of the word ‘victim’. Military or Police casualties from combat should not be considered victims in a criminal investigation context, in the same way people are victims from war crimes, such as summary executions. Before speaking about the whole area of Podrinja, including at least the municipalities of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica and Skelani, I would comment on the various figures circulating around the Kravica attack of January 1993. The figures circulating of hundreds of victims or claiming that all 353 inhabitants were “virtually completely destroyed” do not reflect the reality…. For the whole region, i.e the municipalities of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica and Skelani, the Serb authorities claimed previously that about 1400 people were killed due to attacks committed by the B&H Army forces for the period of May 1992 to March 1995, when Srebrenica was under the control of Naser Oric. Now the figure has become 3,500 Serbs killed. This figure may have been inflated. Taking the term “victims” as defined previously, these figures just does not reflect the reality.”
    -ICTY

    http://www.un.org/icty/briefing/2005/PB050706.htm

    “While acknowledging the hypocrisy”

    Are you familiar with a wee thing known as projection? Thank you for a textbook example of it.

    “In this version of history, the Bosnian Muslim leader Alija Izetbegovic is as pure as the driven snow. In 1970, Izetbegovic wrote an Islamic Declaration that stated”

    Interesting, you just sarcastically ridiculed factual statements about Karadzic with James Bond references, yet here you are attempting to paint Izetbegovic as an evil Jihadist. The Islamic declaration is always quoted out of context by Bosnian genocide deniers, why is that?

    “In fact, no plan for the transformation of Bosnia into an Islamic state, in the opinion of Noel Malcolm and Ivo Banac, was included in the book, nor in the political program of his SDA (which he founded in 1990), notwithstanding that this was a myth of Italian (at least) contemporary journalism on the issue.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islamic_Declaration

    Yes it’s such a pathetic argument that anyone with wikipedia access can tear it apart.

    “The Counterpunch left has never tried to prettify Karadzic.”

    Their actual articles say otherwise.

    “If the West was so hostile to the socialist and multicultural government of Bosnia, why did the bourgeois media not reflect this?”

    Ah yes the media conspiracy argument, no doubt UFOs are next.

    “All in all, the bizarre affinity between the DSP and the forces of Serbophobia beating within the heart of Western imperialism its media and kangaroo courts should not be held against the comrades.”

    Serbophobia? What a joke, the idea that Bosnian genocide deniers are in any position to accuse anyone of bigotry is absurd; it’s like being called wet by the rain. I could go on but it’s clear you have no idea what you are posting about; I just can’t tell if you believe your own fiction or not.

    Riley

    27/12/2010 at 07:03

  74. @David Gibbs

    I could easily tear apart your fantasies about being “silenced” all of which scream “persecution complex” but that’s Marko’s job.

    “One of Hoare’s key accusations is that I am a “genocide denier,” a term he uses repeatedly.”

    You claim that the Srebrenica genocide was not genocide; if that is not genocide denial I don’t what is, you act as if your personal opinion trumps DNA evidence and court verdicts.

    “Let me start on a personal note: As a practicing Jew from a refugee family (my father was born in Berlin), I find Hoare’s politicization and abuse of this term to be extremely odious.”

    So? Many Jews also deny the Armenian genocide.

    “The cited article strongly implies that the court had erred in defining that massacre as genocide.”

    You also posted a link to an Edward Hermann article in this discussion, thus I am a tad skeptical of your taste in sources.

    “Based on the evidence in the article, my endnote concluded that Srebrenica was closer to a war crime than to a genocide. ”

    Which is your opinion not fact.

    “If I cannot cite and agree with an article in a Yale law review without being attacked like this, then there is something profoundly wrong with the way this discussion is taking place.”

    Taking criticism is part of being a writer and an adult; Hoare’s critique of your work was quite polite.

    “Can my point about McCarthyism be made any clearer?”

    Interesting; you are an apologist for genocide yet you think that McCarthy (who was not responsible for mass graves) was somehow worse than Karadzic or Mladic.

    Riley

    27/12/2010 at 07:15

  75. Prof. David Biggs said: “Thus Hoare’s claim – that I suppressed information on Serb atrocities in 1992 – is baseless.”

    No it’s not. Your book does not mention the First Srebrenica Massacre that occurred with the first fall of Srebrenica in the first day of the Bosnian war. In your book, we don’t find mention of Serb massacres of Bosniak (Muslim) civilians in villages like Glogova, Zaklopaca, Hranca, Suha, etc… no mention of Serbian detention camps around Srebrenica, like Susica camp (8000 Bosnian Muslims were confined and tortured there), no mention of prison camp in the Serb village of Kravica (where Serbs raped, tortured and killed more than 300 Muslims in 1992 – well before the 1995 genocide), no mention of rape camps, like the one established by Serbs in the mucipality of Srebrenica — the Sase camp… Too many omission and misrepresentations, coupled with a deliberate falsification of history (denial of genocide) makes Prof. David Biggs’ “research” highly problematic and Mr Gibbs, rather, an unreliable source for any serious debate or consideration.

    Mark Hammond

    27/12/2010 at 08:59

  76. It looks as if Gibbs has essentially wimped out of the debate and abandoned any attempt to respond to my last post. I’m going to repeat: I have never sued anybody for libel or threatened them with a lawsuit, so this talk of libel action is a complete non sequitur; it looks like a desperate attempt on Gibbs’s part to divert attention from the debate on Srebrenica, Bosnia and his book; a debate that is going against him.

    Clearly, the debate is not being silenced, or we would not be having it at this very moment. I’m going to repeat: we live in democracies. I am free to call Gibbs a genocide denier, and he is free to call me a new McCarthy, or Thought Police, or whatever. This is called ‘freedom of speech’; a concept Gibbs apparently doesn’t understand. He appears to think that there is one rule for me and another for him. Why is it that my use of the term ‘genocide denier’ constitutes ‘intimidation’, but his use of ‘McCarthy’ and ‘Thought Police’ doesn’t ?

    Regarding the libel action my parents took against Bookmarks Publications. The publisher and individuals in question – Alex Callinicos and Lindsey German – belonged to the Socialist Workers Party (SWP). Directly after the libel action concluded, the SWP formed the ‘Respect’ Party with George Galloway – a man who has not just once, but repeatedly taken libel actions against those who criticised him. In the months following my parents’ libel action against the SWP, Galloway won libel actions against the Christian Science Monitor and Daily Telegraph newspapers. The SWP failed to condemn this libel action carried out by their fellow Respect Party member. So the SWP opposes libel actions brought against them, but not ones brought by their close allies against others.

    At least libel actions occur within the framework of the law. Yet the SWP resorts to extra-legal action to silence and intimidate its opponents, most notably its rival extremist group, the British National Party (BNP). In the SWP’s own words, from an article entitled ‘Why there must be no free speech for Nazis’:

    ‘On the one hand, liberals tend to frame the argument in terms of free speech, arguing that however reprehensible the fascists are, they should be defeated through debate, just like any other opinion or political current. Socialists, in contrast, tend to argue that fascism is not a political current like any other and should not be treated as such. Fascists are dedicated to destroying every vestige of democracy and have no misgivings about using thuggery to get their way. Mere words are not enough to defeat them – they must also be physically confronted and excluded from public space.’

    http://www.socialistworker.co.uk/art.php?id=13686

    So, that is the extent of the SWP’s respect for freedom of speech; they blubber about a perfectly legal action taken against them by my parents, but proclaim their right to use physical violence to drive their extremist rivals out of the public space.

    Perhaps Professor Gibbs and Louis Proyect would like to express their outrage at the SWP’s lack of respect for freedom of speech ?

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 11:01

  77. It is difficult to know how to respond to Mr. Hoare’s confused posting, above. But he if he wants to criticize my work he needs to do so on the basis of what I actually said, not fiction. And he should stop contradicting himself.

    With regard to his response to me in Greater Surbiton (24/12/10), there is yet an additional self contradiction, which I forgot to mention. His original posting (Greater Surbiton, 6/12/10) stated that my book “suppresses the history of Serb mass killings of Bosniaks in east Bosnia in 1992.” This was baseless, and his more recent posting (24/12/10) confirms that it was baseless. In the latter, Hoare presents a long block quotes from my book, where I discussed precisely the 1992 mass killings and atrocities in east Bosnia — which had previously accused me of suppressing. Hoare thus confirms once again, that my claims were correct, and that his original attack against me was in error.

    True Hoare quibbles that when I cited the block quote about the 1992 atrocities, the quote contained an ellipsis. Hoare claims my quote was “misleading, because he [Gibbs] has actually conflated two paragraphs from two different sub-chapters, joining them with a ellipsis where they are, in his book, actually separated by a sub-chapter heading (‘The Politics of Atrocities’).” Yet it is clear that this is merely a quibble, since the omitted four words in no way change the meaning of the block quote.

    I certainly did not suppress the 1992 atrocities, and the evidence for this nonsuppression is in Hoare’s own statements in Greater Surbiton.
    One of my main complaints about Hoare is that he is attacking people without regard for the facts, and here we have another straightforward case, drawn directly from his own writings.

    David Gibbs

    27/12/2010 at 12:32

  78. And with regard to Hoare’s account of the libel action: I thank him for providing additional information on this topic, but he can hardly qualify as a reliable source here.

    It would of course be good to have Alex Callinicos provide his side of what actually happened. But given his past experiences, as admitted by Hoare, I assume that he has been effectively silenced, and is unwilling to talk about this matter.

    David Gibbs

    27/12/2010 at 12:38

  79. Forgive me, but I have just thought of one more point: In a previous posting, Mr. Hoare claimed the libel suit by his Bosnian Institute colleagues was completely irrelevant to this debate. Well, if it is irrelevant, then why is Hoare now discussing this issue at length? Clearly it is relevant, and Hoare himself provides evidence of this.

    Marko Hoare’s capacity for self contradiction appears to be limitless.

    David Gibbs

    27/12/2010 at 12:56

  80. Professor Gibbs, I don’t think anyone has accused you of denying Serb atrocities in the general sense. I’m not sure anybody has ever denied that Serb forces were guilty of atrocities (possibly Jared Israel and one or two others).

    What I accused you of, was denying the Srebrenica genocide. You accept that you do not consider the Srebrenica massacre to have been an act of genocide. What you dispute, is my charge, that your account of the background to the Srebrenica massacre greatly stresses the atrocities and culpability of Naser Oric’s Bosnian army forces, while wholly neglecting to mention the prior Serb offensives and atrocities in East Bosnia, to which Oric’s actions were a response.

    Your only statement that can even pretend to comprise some sort of acknowledgement of the Serb atrocities in East Bosnia in 1992 that preceded Oric’s actions, is the following sentence, in a different section over thirty pages before: ‘As war began [in 1992], Serb forces launched a major offensive in northeast Bosnia, taking over a series of villages of mixed ethnicity, and then expelling most of the non-Serb inhabitants by force.’ And as I responded, a) this makes no mention of the massacres, torture, rape or concentration camps in East Bosnia, and b) is limited to northeast Bosnia, which doesn’t properly include Srebrenica.

    In my original post, I wrote the following: ‘Anyone reading this [Gibbs’s account of the background to the Srebrenica massacre] who didn’t know better would be left unaware that, prior to Oric’s offensives, Serb forces had massacred and expelled Muslims across the whole of East Bosnia – at Bijeljina, Zvornik, Visegrad, Foca, Bratunac, Srebrenica itself and elsewhere; that 94.83% of the civilians from the Podrinje (East Bosnia) region killed during the war were Muslims and only 4.87% were Serbs (according to the figures of the Research and Documentation Centre); or that more Muslims from Podrinje were killed in 1992 than in the year of the Srebrenica massacre. The military actions of Oric’s forces against neighbouring Serb villages were those of defenders of a beleaguered enclave whose inhabitants were threatened with massacre, rape, torture and expulsion already inflicted on other towns all over East Bosnia. That Gibbs lays such stress on Oric’s atrocities while wholly neglecting to mention the incomparably greater-in-scale Serb atrocities in the same region that preceded them is distortion of the most blatant kind; equivalent to writing of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising without bothering to mention the Holocaust.’

    Are you disputing any of that ?

    PS Your insistence on raising the wholly irrelevant topic of my parents’ libel action against the SWP, followed by your accusation that I am being contradictory in then commenting on the topic that you introduced, just makes you look silly.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 15:00

  81. PPSS Far from the SWP having been cowed into silence by my parents’ libel action, their best known blogger, Richard ‘Lenin’ Seymour, has repeatedly attacked me on his own blog in the past few years, while continuing to write freely and openly about the former Yugoslavia.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 15:04

  82. Professor Gibbs, if Marko Hoare has misrepresented your views, perhaps you should sue HIM. I would like to see the outcome of that.

    I would also like to see some kind of substantive response to Hoare’s point-by-point response to your claim to have written an extensive critique of his shoddy scholarship (an extensive critique that turns out to be four potshots in your endnotes). You can’t credibly argue that because he now has replied at length to your unsubstantiated potshots that he is “contradicting his previous claim.” This is simply evasion. You already made the claim–now back it up. Otherwise, maybe he has (British at least) grounds to sue you.

    Playing the child-of-Holocaust-survivors card is an evasion, too. What your father went through is not pertinent to the matter of your shameful writing on Bosnia. We should be clear about the actual basis of claim that you are a genocide denier vis-à-vis Bosnia. It is not your citation of a single article but the way your present the genocidal crime at the culmination of a genocidal war against the Bosnian Muslims This pretense is what is “utterly ridiculous.”

    *Your sickening treatment of the Serb killing camps suggesting that the “sensationalism” of media reports was more significant than the actual murderous actions of the criminal Serbian nationalist “republic” (thus playing into the hands of some of the most notorious genocide deniers);
    *your fudging of demographic evidence to pretend that significant numbers of Bosnian Muslims died in combat with other Muslims and with Croats rather than being massacred by Serbian nationalists;
    *your sleight-of-hand about the antecedents of the Srebrenica mass murder to pretend that Muslim attacks from the besieged enclave were the cause of the final chapter of what was in fact a prolonged genocidal assault, in which many more people were killed and abused and deported than this final figure of a single horrific massacre’
    *your glib, indeed depraved argument that the Serb extremists probably committed more atrocities simply because they had more guns; your repetition of the canard that the sides—the Serbian and Croatian nationalists and the Bosnian government–were all more or less to blame, covering up the fact that the Bosnian government stood for a multiethnic, multiconfessional society and had the support of members of all three (and four) peoples (I am including Bosnian Jews here), whereas the Pale Serb “republic” was based on the ethno-fascist claim that Serbs could not live with others, with its actual references to an innate Serb need for living space and public statements about Muslims as being “genetically deformed”;
    *your focus on dubious claims that the Bosnian government bombed its own people in Sarajevo (which even if it did happen could not possibly give your reader an accurate sense of a siege in which some 10-12,000 people were killed by Serb snipers and gunners, and says nothing about the other sieges where the same murderous bombing, sniping, and starvation took place):

    All of this (and this list is partial, not comprehensive) places you well inside spectrum of genocide denial, even if you are careful to avoid the more extreme claims of many of the people you cite to support your own thesis. That is why, despite the differences between your arguments and Proyect’s and others, the essential differences among you are not significant. Your manipulative book, with its weasel words and weasel arguments, shores up their more aggressive pro-Milosevic and pro-Karadzic positions, and thus colludes poisonously with genocide denial. You may have fooled the History Department at the University of Arizona and the naïfs at Vanderbilt University Press, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.
    RE name-calling: Louis Proyect accuses me of name-calling and then labels me a reactionary. Here I was–after a century of police states, Gulags, show trials, genocides, and lies–trying to salvage the humanism at the foundations of Marx’s critique and with it the possibility of a liberatory, independent left, and I get slagged and tarred with a sadsack like Hitchens. Well, maybe Louis is the reactionary. I happen to believe that whatever one thinks of the US empire (and I continue to actively oppose it with the minuscule resources I have), that should not give one license to repeat the lies of other empires, be they great or small. Proyect’s claim to be “pro-Serb” is tragic. It is like claiming to be pro-Italian while defending Mussolini (remember, everybody, this is an analogy, so skip the claims about the difference in scale), or pro-Argentine while defending the military junta and its lunatic invasion of the Falklands/Malvinas (something a lot of leftists in fact did). It is an insult to the victims of fascism.

    malachi

    27/12/2010 at 15:21

  83. Mr Gibbs you raise the libel suit, ironically implying sledgehammer tactics in public debate, eventually when Mr Hoare responds you accuse him of overreacting and covering up some supposed plot to silence critics. Then you talk of one’s capacity for self contradiction.
    Personally I think that mentioning the libel suits has some relevancy. It is a reminder of how serious the disinformation campaign has become that one has to resort to the courts to have some semblance of the truth maintained in the public eye, particularly when it comes to crimes against humanity. The actions were taken in the UK not the USA, the focus in the former is more on facts than opinion, had it been the other way around then it should have been a quicker resolution, as there is no opinion privilege in US cases of libel. English common law allows the defence to establish truth based on facts. I’d rather the actions be taken up as criminal libel as the disinformation has grown to the point of it becoming an offence against the public at large. This is not witch-hunting or neo-McCarthyism, it is though respect for the victims of the terror that was inflicted upon BiH and concern at the odd willingness for people to believe that the terror tactics primarily and overwhelmingly inflicted upon Bos Moslems was a distortion of the truth.
    Reading the transcripts of the Karadzic trial one can see this strategy at work by the master himself. ‘The Moslems and their 100,000 strong green beret secret army, did it to themselves!’ (“It is not a lie if you believe the lie” )
    Mr Hoare has raised several real concerns with your scholarship, none of which you have adequately dealt with.

    iko

    27/12/2010 at 15:48

  84. I can see that this debate is winding down, since most of Mr. Hoare’s latest posting only repeats distortions that he has previously made, and which I have addressed and refuted. I have no intention of repeating myself, and interested persons can view my earlier postings.

    And given my own family background in the Holocaust and Nazi-occupied Europe, I find Hoare’s politicized references to these events to be outrageous and inflammatory.

    However, I see that there is one point that Hoare raises that I have not previously addressed, and this concerns the atrocities committed by Bosnian Muslim commander Naser Oric, during the events leading up to the 1995 Srebrenica massacre. Hoare objects to my description of the Oric atrocities, but it is difficult to understand why, since these are very well documented. Consider the following statement by UN commander Philiippe Morillon, during testimony as a prosecution witness at the Milosevic trial, as cited in my book (p. 154):

    “Oric engaged in attacks during Orthodox holidays and destroyed [Serb] villages, massacring all the inhabitants. This created a degree of hatred that was quite extraordinary in the [Srebrenica] region… [Oric] reigned by terror… he could not allow himself to take prisoners. According to my recollections he didn’t even look for an excuse. It was simply a statement: One can’t be bothered with prisoners.”

    It is of course true that Serb atrocities in the Srebrenica area and elsewhere throughout Bosnia were far larger than the above, and they deserve greater condemnation. The book discussed this at length. Nevertheless, Oric’s atrocities are part of the record, and I have no intention of suppressing them.

    This issue brings up a more general point: Hoare’s tone of moral self righteousness, which permeates his writings. Among his supporters, there is a sense that Hoare’s factual errors, his shrill rhetoric, his tendency toward denunciation are all justified, given his higher moral purpose.

    Under scrutiny, however, it appears that his moral tone is just a pose. In reality, Hoare downplays atrocities directed against Serbs.

    I have already noted the case Oric in Bosnia. Let us also consider Kosovo, where anti-Serb atrocities have recently been in the news. The Council of Europe has issued a report accusing the former head of the Kosovo Liberation Army (and now prime minister) Hashim Thaci of numerous crimes, including the marketing of human organs, which the KLA had harvested from Serb victims. The report was widely discussed in the British press. It is also well established that the nearly a quarter million Serbs and also Roma had been ethnically cleansed from Kosovo following the 1999 war (BBC, 28/4/03). And these atrocities occurred after Serbia had been defeated by the NATO powers.

    It of course goes without saying that Serb-directed atrocities were considerably larger in scale, compared with those carried out by the KLA. But the anti-Serb atrocities noted above were substantial all the same, and reasonable people would surely want to condemn them.

    How does Hoare address this issue? Like this: “the KLA did commit atrocities – as all national-liberation movements that resort to armed struggle do” (Greater Surbiton, 30/6/10). He seems to excuse these atrocities as unavoidable collateral damage, and does not condemn them at all. He has also adopted a dismissive attitude with regard allegations of KLA organ trafficking, despite considerable evidence to the contrary.

    The above nicely illustrates the basic problem of anti-Serb bias that suffuses Hoare’s writings. His position is not a human rights position in any meaningful sense, and it is certainly not a moral position. It is a position of ethnic bias, and nothing more.

    David Gibbs

    27/12/2010 at 15:51

  85. ‘most of Mr. Hoare’s latest posting only repeats distortions that he has previously made, and which I have addressed and refuted.’

    No you haven’t. Just saying it doesn’t make it so.

    ‘It is of course true that Serb atrocities in the Srebrenica area and elsewhere throughout Bosnia were far larger than the above, and they deserve greater condemnation. The book discussed this at length.’

    No it doesn’t. We’re still waiting for you to tell us where in your book you discuss the atrocities in the Srebrenica region and the wider East Bosnia region in 1992 that preceded Oric’s actions.

    ‘How does Hoare address this issue? Like this: “the KLA did commit atrocities – as all national-liberation movements that resort to armed struggle do” (Greater Surbiton, 30/6/10).’

    More dishonest whataboutery from Gibbs; that statement was not a response to the Council of Europe’s report, since it was written months before the report was published.

    I fully support a full international investigation into the organ trafficking and related claims, and if enough evidence exists to prosecute Hashim Thaci or anyone else from the former KLA, then they should be prosecuted.

    And if any of them are convicted, I won’t complain that the conviction ‘needlessly exaggerates the scale of the crime’, as Gibbs did over Srebrenica.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 16:34

  86. Apparently a typo in my address kept this comment, written earlier, from getting in. Am re-posting. Sorry if it ends up appearing twice.

    Professor Gibbs, if Marko Hoare has misrepresented your views, perhaps you should sue HIM. I would like to see the outcome of that.

    I would also like to see some kind of substantive response to Hoare’s point-by-point response to your claim to have written an extensive critique of his shoddy scholarship (an extensive critique that turns out to be four potshots in your endnotes). You can’t credibly argue that because he now has replied at length to your unsubstantiated potshots that he is “contradicting his previous claim.” This is simply evasion. You already made the claim–now back it up. Otherwise, maybe he has (British at least) grounds to sue you.

    I would also like to see you respond to his argument about your failure to address the antecedents of the Srebrenica mass murder, as well as the demographic evidence from the Sarajevo Research and Documentation Center, which you cite very selectively. You have not done so.

    Playing the child-of-Holocaust-survivors/refugees card is an evasion, too. What your father went through is not pertinent to the matter of your shameful writing on Bosnia, no more than the experience of Hoare’s great uncle, who was a partisan fighter honored for his antifascist service, matters in judging his writing. (One can find reference to him in Branka Magas’s The Destruction of Yugoslavia: Tracking the Breakup, a left-wing treatment of the history well worth reading.)

    We should be clear about the actual basis of claim that you are a genocide denier vis-à-vis Bosnia. It is not your citation of a single article questioning calling the mass murder in July 1995 “genocide” (in fact the judgment WAS defective because it did not link this series of events to the whole war and the Serbian nationalist project administered by Milosevic and his proxies), but the way your present the genocidal crime at the culmination of a genocidal war against the Bosnian Muslims This pretense is what is “utterly ridiculous.”

    *Your sickening treatment of the Serb killing camps suggesting that the “sensationalism” of media reports was more significant than the actual murderous actions of the criminal Serbian nationalist “republic” (thus playing into the hands of some of the most notorious genocide deniers);
    *your fudging of demographic evidence to pretend that significant numbers of Bosnian Muslims died in combat with other Muslims and with Croats rather than being massacred by Serbian nationalists;
    *your sleight-of-hand about the antecedents of the Srebrenica mass murder to pretend that Muslim attacks from the besieged enclave were the cause of the final chapter of what was in fact a prolonged genocidal assault, in which many more people were killed and abused and deported than this final figure of a single horrific massacre’
    *your glib, indeed depraved argument that the Serb extremists probably committed more atrocities simply because they had more guns; your repetition of the canard that the sides—the Serbian and Croatian nationalists and the Bosnian government–were all more or less to blame, covering up the fact that the Bosnian government stood for a multiethnic, multiconfessional society and had the support of members of all three (and four) peoples (I am including Bosnian Jews here), whereas the Pale Serb “republic” was based on the ethno-fascist claim that Serbs could not live with others, with its actual references to an innate Serb need for living space and public statements about Muslims as being “genetically deformed”;
    *your focus on dubious claims that the Bosnian government bombed its own people in Sarajevo (which even if it did happen could not possibly give your reader an accurate sense of a siege in which some 10-12,000 people were killed by Serb snipers and gunners, and says nothing about the other sieges where the same murderous bombing, sniping, and starvation took place):

    All of this (and this list is partial, not comprehensive) places you well inside spectrum of genocide denial, even if you are careful to avoid the more extreme claims of many of the people you cite to support your own thesis. That is why, despite the differences between your arguments and Proyect’s and others, the essential differences among you are not significant. Your manipulative book, with its weasel words and weasel arguments, shores up their more aggressive pro-Milosevic and pro-Karadzic positions, and thus colludes poisonously with genocide denial. You may have fooled the History Department at the University of Arizona and the naïfs at Vanderbilt University Press, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.

    RE name-calling: Louis Proyect accuses me of name-calling and then labels me a reactionary. Here I was–after a century of police states, Gulags, show trials, genocides, and lies–trying to salvage the humanism at the foundations of Marx’s critique and with it the possibility of a liberatory, independent left, and I get slagged and tarred with a sadsack like Hitchens. Well, maybe Louis is the reactionary. I happen to believe that whatever one thinks of the US empire (and I continue to actively oppose it with the minuscule resources I have), that should not give one license to repeat the lies of other empires, be they great or small. Proyect’s claim to be “pro-Serb” is tragic. It is like claiming to be pro-Italian while defending Mussolini (remember, everybody, this is an analogy, so skip the claims about the difference in scale), or pro-Argentine while defending the military junta and its lunatic invasion of the Falklands/Malvinas (something a lot of leftists in fact did). It is an insult to the victims of fascism.

    malachi

    27/12/2010 at 16:56

  87. Here I was–after a century of police states, Gulags, show trials, genocides, and lies–trying to salvage the humanism at the foundations of Marx’s critique and with it the possibility of a liberatory, independent left, and I get slagged and tarred with a sadsack like Hitchens.

    Norm Geras, where did you think up the tag “Malachi”?

    louisproyect

    27/12/2010 at 17:10

  88. Hoare uses the term ‘genocide-denier’, but what does he say about the single largest episode of ethnic cleansing in the Yugoslav civil wars? He has the gall to say it ‘prevented genocide’.

    http://www.henryjacksonsociety.org/stories.asp?id=558

    ‘…for despite all the crimes against Serb civilians that accompanied Operation Storm, the fact remains that it was an entirely necessary, legitimate military action that should rightly be celebrated.’

    The Croat Nationalist Hoare, like his parents, may not be an apologist for Tudjman, but he one is for his methods. Similarly he has done all he can to minimise the crimes committed by his allies and emplotyers, Spegelj, Oric, Thaci and Nato.

    Hoare knows from his work at the ICTY kangaroo court that the chances of such as the above being convicted for their crimes is as close to zero as it is certain for Serbs.

    Erica Blair

    27/12/2010 at 17:22

  89. RE Gibbs’s second question. Why does Gibbs bother to bring up Hoare’s association with a rightist publication, when he himself writes in his book that though he considers himself on the left, “I have learned much from some conservative writers as Christopher Layne, Paul Craig Roberts, Ted Galen Carpenter, and Jude Wanniski.

    Well, Karl Marx learned from Hegel, a kind of court philosopher for Prussian junkers capitalism. But let’s be clear about something. You only contribute to Frontpage if you have broken with the left. At one point Horowitz and Hitchens were going to work together on some European tour along the lines of the Nation Magazine cruises. I got a chuckle out of that, imagining Hitchens showing around some racist Texas oilmen around London. There should be absolutely no confusion about Hoare’s decision to publish in Frontpage. That was his way of sticking up his middle finger to the left, in the same fashion as going to work for a think-tank named after a Democratic Senator committed to Ronald Reagan’s foreign policy.

    louisproyect

    27/12/2010 at 17:27

  90. Louis Proyect,

    Wow, you answer quickly! Clearly some deep reflection going on there. What was that–a minute?

    You are so wrong about my identity–I don’t even know who the person you mention is (I’ll look him up). But your response is typical. It’s not surprising that I have to fit so easily in your cramped, dogmat view. It’s the response of a cop, a stasi.

    I have no great commitment to saving Marxism, or any ism, except as part of a large human legacy of knowledge and experience, a strand in the current of human freedom, but a very problematic one–the tragic, problematic nature of which you and your friends are clearly perfect poster boys and girls.

    You, for all I know, are really Sam Marcy, or Bob Avakian, or Ramon Mercader, or la Passionaria, of Nechaev. It doesn’t really matter who you are, or who I am, in this blog, and more than it matters where our fathers were (mine happened to be in Berlin, too, in 1945, putting an end to one form of fascism (but not all, alas).

    I am pretty much done with this blog, I think. Gibbs refuses to respond in any meaningful way to Hoare, and he prefers to sic you on me rather than respond to anything said in my comments. (If he does respond, I imagine it will be just as ridiculous.)

    As the old saying goes, if people see me on the corner arguing with a fool, they see two fools arguing. I’ve been on this corner a little too long.

    I do hope some of the other people who have followed this “debate” will look at some of the books I have suggested. The Bosnians and defenders of multicultural Bosnia and other victims of Milosevic’s crimes deserve our solidarity, just as the victims of US imperialism in El Salvador and Guatemala and elsewhere have.

    malachi

    27/12/2010 at 17:34

  91. I meant to say: You, for all I know, are really Sam Marcy, or Bob Avakian, or Ramon Mercader, or la Passionaria, of Nechaev. It doesn’t really matter who you are, or who I am, in this blog, ANY more than it matters where our fathers were (mine happened to be in Berlin, too, in 1945, putting an end to one form of fascism (but not all, alas).

    malachi

    27/12/2010 at 17:47

  92. Hoare’s political orientation is confirmed not only by his contribution to the ‘barking’ far-right FrontPage Magazine but also by his membership of the explicitly neo-conservative Henry Jackson Society.

    As a historical snippet, Marko was once associated with the Slaughter wing of the lunatic WRP.

    Erica Blair

    27/12/2010 at 17:59

  93. ‘Erica Blair’ is a Milosevic-supporting ignoramus who continues to post the same lies, no matter how many times they are refuted, and no matter how many times he is unable to respond to their refutations.

    He repeats a two-decade-old smear against Spegelj that was the work of Yugoslav military intelligence, and gives a Wikipedia article as his source – a Wikipedia article, for Christ’s sake ! And this is what his own Wikipedia source says of the source for his Spegelj quotes: ‘Most of the tape has audio garbled and the text subtitled and read by a narrator, so the accuracy of the tape is in question.’

    Regarding his falsehood that Operation Storm was ‘the largest single act of ethnic cleansing’ in the wars in the former Yugoslavia – the largest single act of ethnic cleansing of the Balkan wars was actually the Serb assault on Bosnia in 1992, which resulted in 1.1 million refugees by mid-July 1992, and nearly two million by the end of the year, according to UNHCR figures. An act of ethnic cleansing which ‘Erica Blair’ and his kind supported.

    Readers are strongly recommended to follow the link to my article that ‘Erica Blair’ provides, to see what I really did write about Croatian atrocities against Serbs during Operation Storm.

    If there is anyone out there who is really daft and ignorant enough to believe ‘Erica Blair’s’ claim that Serbia never attacked Bosnia in 1992, I’d recommend the following link to a detailed case-study demonstrating it:

    http://bim.lbg.ac.at/de/stellungnahmen-und-gutachten/ethnic-cleansing-operations-northeastbosnian-city-zvornik-april-through

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 18:18

  94. From the Henry Jackson Society website:

    At first, Jackson was very much within the mainstream of the Cold War liberal Democratic Party. He was later marginalised as the party moved to the left after 1968, especially on foreign policy. A strong supporter of Lyndon Johnson’s war to contain communism in Vietnam, Jackson became a highly effective critic of Détente with the Soviet Union, which he felt sold out human rights and compromised the security of the free world.

    ***

    By the end of the war, 7 million tons of bombs had been dropped on Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia – more than twice the amount of bombs dropped on Europe and Asia in World War II. In addition, poisonous sprays were dropped by planes to destroy trees and any kind of growth – an area the size of the state of Massachusetts was covered with such poison. Vietnamese mothers reported birth defects in their children. Yale biologists, using the same poison (2,4,5,T) on mice, reported defective mice born and said they had no reason to believe the effect on humans was different.

    Full: http://libcom.org/history/articles/vietnam-war

    ***

    From an article titled “Was Iraq Worth It” on the Henry Jackson website:

    The United States or even the international community writ large cannot respond to every atrocity committed in the world on a regular basis, but recent decades have seen an evolution of a so-called Responsibility to Protect. The slow pace of progress in Iraq runs the risk of convincing future Presidents that taking action is not worth the effort or the cost. Much as Norman Podhoretz described the impact of Vietnam on U.S. foreign policy, as the sense that “we lacked the power, the will, and the wisdom to carry out a more ambitious strategy with any hope of success,” we now run the risk that future U.S. Presidents will be overly cautious when it comes to intervening in the future.

    ***

    100,000 Civilian Deaths Estimated in Iraq

    By Rob Stein
    Washington Post Staff Writer
    Friday, October 29, 2004; Page A16

    One of the first attempts to independently estimate the loss of civilian life from the Iraqi war has concluded that at least 100,000 Iraqi civilians may have died because of the U.S. invasion.

    The analysis, an extrapolation based on a relatively small number of documented deaths, indicated that many of the excess deaths have occurred due to aerial attacks by coalition forces, with women and children being frequent victims, wrote the international team of public health researchers making the calculations.

    louisproyect

    27/12/2010 at 18:26

  95. “I fully support a full international investigation into the organ trafficking and related claims, and if enough evidence exists to prosecute Hashim Thaci or anyone else from the former KLA, then they should be prosecuted.”

    Have you changed your opinion then from when you wrote this?
    http://arockridgelife.files.wordpress.com/2008/08/wolf_in_sheeps_clothing.jpg?w=404&h=447

    Asteri

    27/12/2010 at 18:29

  96. ‘There should be absolutely no confusion about Hoare’s decision to publish in Frontpage.’

    I never took any decision to publish in Frontpage. I have never contributed an article to Frontpage. One article I wrote for the Henry Jackson Society and published on its website was subsequently republished by Frontpage. I do not know whether or not Frontpage sought or obtained the HJS’s permission to republish the article; it did not seek mine.

    Be that as it may, and much as I dislike Frontpage’s right-wing politics, it is not as objectionable a publication as the anti-Semitic, genocide-denying rag ‘Counterpunch’.

    I do, to use Proyect’s words, indeed ‘stick my middle finger up’ to any left that includes genocide deniers and Milosevic supporters. I do not want to be part of any such left. I prefer Scoop Jackson Democrats and neocons to Stalinists, Maoists and Milosevic supporters.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    27/12/2010 at 22:07

  97. From Hoare’s “colleague” Daniel Toljaga:

    DAVID N. GIBBS, GENOCIDE DENIER (UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA)

    A debate is raging between Marko Attila Hoare and David N. Biggs regarding Biggs’ denial of the Srebrenica genocide. Prof. David Biggs of University of Arizona does not posses any qualifications to interpret or deny the crime of genocide – he does not have a degree in international law, he was never a sitting judge on a UN-established international criminal tribunal, and his research is filled with omissions, misrepresentations, and deliberate falsification of history when it comes to Srebrenica.

    http://srebrenica-genocide.blogspot.com/

    A fairly typical slur from Hoare’s chum. By the way Gibbs, I wouldn’t feel too special being a recipient of the ‘genocide denier’ tag. Hoare bandies it about with such abandon that he’s rendered it all but meaningless, alas the poor chap is utterly oblivious to that fact. Was Hoare the inspiration behind Godwin’s law? Seems plausible, his blog is chock-full of name calling: fascist this, that and the other. I deplore the cuts in UK HE as much as any academic, but what does Hoare use to illustrate his blog article on this? An image of Nazis burning books. He’s very much like Rick in the Young Ones (if you’ve ever seen that splendid show).

    frunobulax

    27/12/2010 at 22:48

  98. “but what does Hoare use to illustrate his blog article on this? An image of Nazis burning books. ”

    While I disagree with Marko’s liberal use of Nazi parallels that was one of the few that was accurate, especially once you read the possessions taken by the tabloid press and the Thatcherite reactionaries, who represent a similarly unpleasant and moronic rabble of anti-educationalists, reverse elitists and Philistines. Given a chance the average Sun/Express reader would burn books in Parliament square.

    Asteri

    27/12/2010 at 23:28

  99. “Consider the following statement by UN commander Philiippe Morillon, during testimony as a prosecution witness at the Milosevic trial, as cited in my book”

    Philiippe Morillon is an apologist for the Srebrenica genocide, his lies are easy to demolish.

    “the figures circulating of hundreds of victims or claiming that all 353 [Kravica] inhabitants were ‘virtually completely destroyed’ do not reflect the reality…. During the attack by the BH army on Kravica, Jezestica, Opravdici, Mandici and the surrounding villages (the larger area of Kravica), on the 7th & 8th January 1993, 43 people were killed, according to our information. Our investigation shows that 13 of the 43 were obviously civilians.”

    The Research and Documentation Center (RDC) in Sarajevo lists 11 Serb civilian victims. (Myth of Bratunac) The RDC data was favorably evaluated by a team of international experts including the Hague Tribunal’s demographic expert Ewa Tabeau.

    It is crucially important to note that the attack on Kravica does not represent a massacre. The “massacre” by definition is “a brutal slaughter of a large number of people.” The 11 or 13 individual Serb victims that died in the attack belonged to the “village guards,” and according to the Oric judgment,

    “the village guards were backed by the VRS [Bosnian Serb Army], and following the fighting in the summer of 1992, they received military support, including weapons and training. A considerable amount of weapons and ammunition was kept in Kravica and Šiljkovići. Moreover, there is evidence that besides the village guards, there was Serb and Bosnian Serb military presence in the area.”

    http://srebrenica-genocide.blogspot.com/2009/12/philippe-morillons-distortions-on.html

    chroniclinghate

    28/12/2010 at 01:21

  100. I prefer Scoop Jackson Democrats and neocons to Stalinists, Maoists and Milosevic supporters.

    What do you mean you prefer Scoop Jackson Democrats? You are a Scoop Jackson Democrat.

    louisproyect

    28/12/2010 at 03:29

  101. To “Erica Blair”, who seems to claim, despite mountains of evidence, that Serbia had no part in the aggression on Bosnia, I simply post this:

    “Without Serbia, nothing would have happened, we don’t have the resources and we would not have been able to make war.” – Radovan Karadzic, former president of Republika Srpska, to the Assembly of the Republika Srpska, May 10–11, 1994.

    Now, Mr. Gibbs, you are doing something that has been done to death already by Serb nationalists, and that is to try and diminish or “explain” the Srebrenica genocide by pushing the idea that Bosniaks, mainly Naser Oric and his men, “provoked” Ratko Mladic and his army to commit this atrocity.

    Really? This is why Srebrenica happend? This makes little sense, since numerous other large massacres had already happend throughout Bosnia, especialy in 1992. Did Naser Oric provoke all those massacres as well? Something like 83% of civilian casualties of the war are Bosniaks; was this all provoked by Oric?

    “Oric engaged in attacks during Orthodox holidays and destroyed [Serb] villages, massacring all the inhabitants.”

    You should probably know that those claims are greatly exagarated, as was proven by not only the ICTY and the UN, but even the VRS’s own internal records which showed only 11 civilian casualties in the villige of Kravica which was attacked on orthodox Christmas, even though Serbs claimed all 350 inhabitants had been “wiped out”.
    More about that here: http://srebrenica-genocide.blogspot.com/2009/12/philippe-morillons-distortions-on.html

    The most up-to-date analysis of Serb casualties in the region comes from the Sarajevo-based Research and Documentation Center, a non-partisan institution with a multiethnic staff, whose data have been collected, processed, checked, compared and evaluated by international team of experts. The RDC’s extensive review of casualty data found that Serb casualties in the Bratunac municipality amounted to 119 civilians and 424 soldiers. It also established that although the 383 Serb victims buried in the Bratunac military cemetery are presented as casualties of ARBiH units from Srebrenica, 139 (more than one third of the total) had fought and died elsewhere in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

    So much for the big bad Naser Oric who “slaughtered 3,500 Serbs”. He was acquitted of all charges brought against him.

    AliCust

    28/12/2010 at 04:53

  102. The disintegration of this discussion is symptomatic of the ongoing examination of the condition of BiH. It starts on track with an examination of the contrasting interpretations of the history presumably or rather hopefully attempting to explain the need for a just and peaceful resolution of civil rights and recognition for what was lost in that conflict. But then collapses into a name calling diatribe and condemnation by way of pseudo or real or attributed political associations. Who are these people you list as important in this debate and who cares about these other magazines, the focus of the debate is lost and point scoring has taken over.
    At the end of which BiH is swept aside as a footnote in someone’s discourse. I am indebted to those who maintain a a public focus on BiH’s plight, even Gibbs for sparking a return to first principles of research but moreso to Hoare for his perseverance and attention to detail under fire. The ‘throw-away comment’ re the overuse of ‘genocide deniers’ (as if anyone should be criticized for attempting to publicly highlight the possibility of such, especially as aforementioned all the legal procedures at one;s disposal to challenge such a label) is more a recognition of the scale of the apparent indifference to the ethnic culling that was methodically executed upon those and their heritage who were marked for removal by one way or another.
    I am continually perplexed by the double standards in the west when it comes to BiH. Look at any local election, provincial, state, federal campaign and see what motivates the voters when it comes to egalitarianism and social justice and then look for how that translates to Bosnia’s horrific experience, then and now. How anyone who has become of aware of the modus operandi of the Serb nationalists in that conflict then and now and not forthrightly condemn it for what it was and is, then vote for social democratic policies in one of its political manifestations; conservatives, labor, republican or democrat at their own elections is a contradiction at all levels.
    The debate about maps, ‘land rights’, comparative historical suffering, religious differences is all a distraction. The principles of natural justice must be the corner stone in these matters not in the sense of pay-back but recognition of certain inalienable rights that our collective tortured history must surely be leading us to accept. No one’s family, friends, neighbours deserves to be treated the way we allowed those of BiH to be treated, then and now. This is not playing the ‘humantiarian’ card, to use Gibbs’ rhetoric, it is a simple recognition that any thing else is a negation of the principles of justice that underpin our western ideals; legal, spiritual, philosophical. Any discussion that loses sight of this thesis becomes a victim of its own manipulations.
    One point that often intrigues me is when people such as Mr/Prof Gibbs use terms as ‘military offensive’ to explain the events of 1992-1995, in particular 1992-3, and not include an examination into what constitutes a military offensive- the entirety of the campaign. That is, no war starts with the first shot. A logistical analysis, an audit of supply and expenditure of the conflict, is indeed still awaiting serious investigation as it in the end will expose the high level of strategic and tactical planning that was invested in the offensive; from the purchase of arms late 1980’s to distribution 1990 to the particularly virulent Serbian controlled media campaign of 1990-1, to the requisition of transport vehicles in western Serbia, the development of a string of strategically placed fuel depots, the use of the heavy earth-moving machinery for the firing zones surrounding Sarajevo and Tuzla as the farcial essentially self imposed Yugoslav UN arms embargo was being ‘debated’ in New York, the insidious racketeering channels and associated economic activity that dominated much of the local economies of Crna Gora and Serbia. No matter how much Karadzic et al attempt to portray the events as a natural and spontaneous resistance to perceived threat to the Serbian cultural and political identity any half serious analysis will paint a very different picture. Hoare has attempted this in one of his works, How Bosnia Armed, but focused on the beginnings and the consequences once the conflict was unleashed, not the methodical, clerical, systematic preliminary operations that lead to the first shot being fired. Therein amongst the mundane accounts and bureaucratic procedures lies the truth of Bosnia’s dismantlement.

    iko

    28/12/2010 at 07:13

  103. “One point that often intrigues me is when people such as Mr/Prof Gibbs use terms as ‘military offensive’ to explain the events of 1992-1995, in particular 1992-3, and not include an examination into what constitutes a military offensive- the entirety of the campaign.”

    Iko, this is exactly the kind of weasel words, denying the genocidal attack, to which I was referring in my description of Gibbs’s dislocation (rather than direct denial) of the essential truths of the war in Bosnia. This is one of Marko Hoare’s important points. Gibbs pretends that his perfunctory description of the Serbian nationalist mass murder campaign in the spring and summer of 1992 suffices in proving that he has adequately dealt with the reality of what happened. This is an insult to the intelligence and to the imagination.

    But as I said, he gives no sense of having appreciated or understood or even read the testimony regarding this matter. He wouldn’t want to, of course, because he believes that these reports–which are the equivalent of Primo Levi and other witnesses of mass murder in he 1990s–are “sensationalism.”

    Gibbs’s whole book works to dislocate rather than directly deny. Ultimately, it is not a matter of “proving” anything to a discerning reader who might actually look at the books that Gibbs purports to cite. One can see from reading the posts here on the blog that it is not really possible to prove anything if a person is psychically unwilling to consider the evidence rationally (read Wilhelm Reich, and Erich Fromm’s Escape from Freedom). As with Karadzic’s claims that the bombings of the Markale Market or the National Library or other parts of Sarajevo, all that the liars need to do is sow doubt, confuse people, get them wondering, and thus neutralize them politically from doing anything or even saying anything to defend the victims and fight for the right to live in a diverse, multiconfessional society. This is the ultimate outcome of Gibbs’s book. It’s one of those terrible ironies that it does this in the name of progressive politics.

    malachi

    28/12/2010 at 08:55

  104. On Dr. Hoare and Prof. Gibbs
    Dr. Marko Hoare’s research is a model of impeccable scholarship and, without essential hesitation, I plead guilty of praising and endorsing his work. His scholarly contributions need no defense from me. They are capable of standing on their own. In contrast, Prof. David N. Gibbs’ pernicious denial of genocide calls into question not only his academic credibility, but his very qualifications to hold tenure at a university at all.

    Prof. Gibbs of the University of Arizona knows or understands very little of the relevant literature on Srebrenica and has made a deliberate misinterpretation of facts to lead people to believe that the Bosnian Muslims instigated violence around Srebrenica (e.g. discredited statements about Naser Orić by General Philippe Morillon), which I will address in my upcoming text (Part II) in a timely manner. Rather than willingly inflicting emotional distress on the genocide survivors and denigrating the public image of the University of Arizona, I invite Prof. Gibbs to reconsider his opinion and align himself with the facts about Srebrenica.

    Judge Theodor Meron (Holocaust survivor) presided over the Krstić appeal when the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia unanimously agreed:

    “Among the grievous crimes this Tribunal has the duty to punish, the crime of genocide is singled out for special condemnation and opprobrium… The gravity of genocide is reflected in the stringent requirements which must be satisfied before this conviction is imposed. These requirements – the demanding proof of specific intent and the showing that the group was targeted for destruction in its entirety or in substantial part – guard against a danger that convictions for this crime will be imposed lightly. Where these requirements are satisfied, however, the law must not shy away from referring to the crime committed by its proper name. By seeking to eliminate a part of the Bosnian Muslims, the Bosnian Serb forces committed genocide. They targeted for extinction the forty thousand [40,000] Bosnian Muslims living in Srebrenica, a group which was emblematic of the Bosnian Muslims in general. They stripped all the male Muslim prisoners, military and civilian, elderly and young, of their personal belongings and identification, and deliberately and methodically killed them solely on the basis of their identity. The Bosnian Serb forces were aware, when they embarked on this genocidal venture, that the harm they caused would continue to plague the Bosnian Muslims. The Appeals Chamber states unequivocally that the law condemns, in appropriate terms, the deep and lasting injury inflicted, and calls the massacre at Srebrenica by its proper name: genocide. Those responsible will bear this stigma, and it will serve as a warning to those who may in future contemplate the commission of such a heinous act.”

    The Question of Serbia’s responsibility for Genocide:

    In reference to allegations by anonymous commenter (‘frunobulax’) – who may or may not be aligned with a self-confessed genocide denier Mr Nebojša Malić – I tendered my response earlier this year and will not dwell on this nonsense again. I will gladly grant my full response to another anonymous commenter (‘Asteri’) who raised some interesting observations and refrained from name-calling. He/she wrote:

    “Marko along with a quite a few people, including Francis Boyle, the Bosnian Muslims and Daniel Toljaga reject the judgement that Serbia was not guilty of Genocide in Bosnia.”

    For the record: I dissent with some aspects of the ICJ judgement, but I do not reject it.

    First of all: The judgement of the International Court of Justice (26 February 2007) dealt exclusively with the question of the state responsibility for genocide, while the judgement of the International Criminal Tribunal in the Krstić case dealt exclusively with the issue of individual responsibility. The ICJ judgement – which qualified Srebrenica as genocide, but exonerated Serbia from direct responsibility for the massacre (holding, instead, that it ‘merely’ failed to prevent genocide) — was not unanimous. The court acknowledged that the genocide was committed with the logistical, moral and financial support of Serbia and the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA); however, there was no evidence of Serbia’s “intent” (mens rea) to commit the genocide. Vice-president of the court, Judge Al-Khasawneh, dissented on the following grounds:

    “Serbia’s involvement, as a principal actor or accomplice, in the genocide that took place in Srebrenica is supported by massive and compelling evidence. Disagreement with the Court’s methodology for appreciating the facts and drawing inferences there from The Court should have required the Respondent to provide unedited copies of its Supreme Defence Council documents, failing which, the Court should have allowed a more liberal recourse to inference. The ‘effective control’ test for attribution established in the Nicaragua case is not suitable to questions of State responsibility for international crimes committed with a common purpose. The ‘overall control’ test for attribution established in the Tadić case is more appropriate when the commission of international crimes is the common objective of the controlling State and the non-State actors. The Court’s refusal to infer genocidal intent from a consistent pattern of conduct in Bosnia and Herzegovina is inconsistent with the established jurisprudence of the ICTY. The FRY’s [Federal Republic of Yugoslavia] knowledge of the genocide set to unfold in Srebrenica is clearly established. The Court should have treated the Scorpions as a de jure organ of the FRY. The statement by the Serbian Council of Ministers in response to the massacre of Muslim men by the Scorpions amounted to an admission of responsibility. The Court failed to appreciate the definitional complexity of the crime of genocide and to assess the facts before it accordingly.”

    The bottom line: The judgment is that Serbia is responsible under the Genocide Convention for failing to prevent the genocide committed by the Bosnian Serb army (VRS) in Srebrenica and for not cooperating with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in punishing the perpetrators of the genocide.

    Second of all: the Hague Tribunal continues to introduce compelling new evidence which clearly indicates that Scorpions were under the effective control of Serbia (http://bit.ly/gYjjI0). Now, it remains a point of contentious debate when did that “effective control” end? In the indictment of Serbia’s Chief of the State Security Service Jovica Stanišić and the commander of the Special Operations Unit Franko Simatović, we find:

    “… that in June 1995, Stanišić and Simatović ordered the Scorpions, a special unit of the Republic of Serbia DB, to travel from their base in Đeletovci in RSK [‘Republic of Serbian Krajina’ in Croatia], to Serb controlled territory near Srajevo. The Scorpions arrived in BiH in early July 1995 and based themselves in theh village of Trnovo, at the foot of Treskavica Mountain, near Sarajevo. In July 1995, certain Muslim men and boys who were captured after the fall of Srebrenica enclave were taken to the base of the Scorpions in Trnovo… where they murdered them by shooting them.”

    Other convincing evidence, uncovered by the Hague Tribunal, also suggests that Serbia was, indeed, directly involved in the massacre. For example: Momcilo Perisic, the former Chief of General Staff of the Yugoslav Army, was present in the headquarters of the Main Staff of the Bosnian Serb Army in Han Pijesak in July of 1995, that is – during the Srebrenica genocide (http://bit.ly/dHv3Ak). What was he doing there? Among the Serbian forces who entered Srebrenica in July 1995 were soldiers belonging to the Uzice Corps (http://bit.ly/hTN0Pb). What were they doing there?

    Daniel Toljaga
    Institute for the Research of Genocide, Canada
    http://www.instituteforgenocide.ca

    Daniel Toljaga

    28/12/2010 at 23:34

  105. Daniel Toljaga tells me he has been trying without success to post comments on this thread, but the system isn’t receiving them, although he has come under attack here and should be able to respond. So I’m posting the following comment on his behalf. He has also posted it on his blog:

    http://danieltoljaga.wordpress.com/2010/12/28/debating-genocide-deniers-part-iii/

    ‘Dr. Marko Hoare’s research is a model of impeccable scholarship and, without essential hesitation, I plead guilty of praising and endorsing his work. His scholarly contributions need no defense from me. They are capable of standing on their own. In contrast, Prof. David N. Gibbs’ pernicious denial of genocide calls into question not only his academic credibility, but his very qualifications to hold tenure at a university at all.

    Prof. Gibbs of the University of Arizona knows or understands very little of the relevant literature on Srebrenica and has made a deliberate misinterpretation of facts to lead people to believe that the Bosnian Muslims instigated violence around Srebrenica (e.g. discredited statements about Naser Orić by General Philippe Morillon), which I will address in my upcoming text (Part II) in a timely manner. Rather than willingly inflicting emotional distress on the genocide survivors and denigrating the public image of the University of Arizona, I invite Prof. Gibbs to reconsider his opinion and align himself with the facts about Srebrenica.

    Judge Theodor Meron (Holocaust survivor) presided over the Krstić appeal when the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia unanimously agreed:

    “Among the grievous crimes this Tribunal has the duty to punish, the crime of genocide is singled out for special condemnation and opprobrium… The gravity of genocide is reflected in the stringent requirements which must be satisfied before this conviction is imposed. These requirements – the demanding proof of specific intent and the showing that the group was targeted for destruction in its entirety or in substantial part – guard against a danger that convictions for this crime will be imposed lightly. Where these requirements are satisfied, however, the law must not shy away from referring to the crime committed by its proper name. By seeking to eliminate a part of the Bosnian Muslims, the Bosnian Serb forces committed genocide. They targeted for extinction the forty thousand [40,000] Bosnian Muslims living in Srebrenica, a group which was emblematic of the Bosnian Muslims in general. They stripped all the male Muslim prisoners, military and civilian, elderly and young, of their personal belongings and identification, and deliberately and methodically killed them solely on the basis of their identity. The Bosnian Serb forces were aware, when they embarked on this genocidal venture, that the harm they caused would continue to plague the Bosnian Muslims. The Appeals Chamber states unequivocally that the law condemns, in appropriate terms, the deep and lasting injury inflicted, and calls the massacre at Srebrenica by its proper name: genocide. Those responsible will bear this stigma, and it will serve as a warning to those who may in future contemplate the commission of such a heinous act.”

    The Question of Serbia’s responsibility for Genocide

    In reference to allegations by anonymous commenter (‘frunobulax’) – who may or may not be aligned with a self-confessed genocide denier Mr Nebojša Malić – I tendered my response earlier this year and will not dwell on this nonsense again. I will gladly grant my full response to another anonymous commenter (‘Asteri’) who raised some interesting observations and refrained from name-calling. He/she wrote:

    “Marko along with a quite a few people, including Francis Boyle, the Bosnian Muslims and Daniel Toljaga reject the judgement that Serbia was not guilty of Genocide in Bosnia.”

    For the record: I dissent with some aspects of the ICJ judgement, but I do not reject it.

    First of all: The judgement of the International Court of Justice (26 February 2007) dealt exclusively with the question of the state responsibility for genocide, while the judgement of the International Criminal Tribunal in the Krstić case dealt exclusively with the issue of individual responsibility. The ICJ judgement – which qualified Srebrenica as genocide, but exonerated Serbia from direct responsibility for the massacre (holding, instead, that it ‘merely’ failed to prevent genocide) — was not unanimous. The court acknowledged that the genocide was committed with the logistical, moral and financial support of Serbia and the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA); however, there was no evidence of Serbia’s “intent” (mens rea) to commit the genocide. Vice-president of the court, Judge Al-Khasawneh, dissented on the following grounds:

    “Serbia’s involvement, as a principal actor or accomplice, in the genocide that took place in Srebrenica is supported by massive and compelling evidence. Disagreement with the Court’s methodology for appreciating the facts and drawing inferences there from The Court should have required the Respondent to provide unedited copies of its Supreme Defence Council documents, failing which, the Court should have allowed a more liberal recourse to inference. The ‘effective control’ test for attribution established in the Nicaragua case is not suitable to questions of State responsibility for international crimes committed with a common purpose. The ‘overall control’ test for attribution established in the Tadić case is more appropriate when the commission of international crimes is the common objective of the controlling State and the non-State actors. The Court’s refusal to infer genocidal intent from a consistent pattern of conduct in Bosnia and Herzegovina is inconsistent with the established jurisprudence of the ICTY. The FRY’s [Federal Republic of Yugoslavia] knowledge of the genocide set to unfold in Srebrenica is clearly established. The Court should have treated the Scorpions as a de jure organ of the FRY. The statement by the Serbian Council of Ministers in response to the massacre of Muslim men by the Scorpions amounted to an admission of responsibility. The Court failed to appreciate the definitional complexity of the crime of genocide and to assess the facts before it accordingly.”

    The bottom line: The judgment is that Serbia is responsible under the Genocide Convention for failing to prevent the genocide committed by the Bosnian Serb army (VRS) in Srebrenica and for not cooperating with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in punishing the perpetrators of the genocide.

    Second of all: the Hague Tribunal continues to introduce compelling new evidence which clearly indicates that Scorpions were under the effective control of Serbia (see: “Arkan’s Men and Scorpions Under State Security Umbrella“). Now, it remains a point of contentious debate when did that “effective control” end? In the indictment of Serbia’s Chief of the State Security Service Jovica Stanišić and the commander of the Special Operations Unit Franko Simatović, we find:

    “… that in June 1995, Stanišić and Simatović ordered the Scorpions, a special unit of the Republic of Serbia DB, to travel from their base in Đeletovci in RSK [‘Republic of Serbian Krajina’ in Croatia], to Serb controlled territory near Srajevo. The Scorpions arrived in BiH in early July 1995 and based themselves in theh village of Trnovo, at the foot of Treskavica Mountain, near Sarajevo. In July 1995, certain Muslim men and boys who were captured after the fall of Srebrenica enclave were taken to the base of the Scorpions in Trnovo… where they murdered them by shooting them.”

    Other convincing evidence, uncovered by the Hague Tribunal, also suggests that Serbia was, indeed, directly involved in the massacre. For example: Momcilo Perisic, the former Chief of General Staff of the Yugoslav Army, was present in the headquarters of the Main Staff of the Bosnian Serb Army in Han Pijesak in July of 1995, that is – during the Srebrenica genocide (see: “Perišić Visiting Mladić During Srebrenica Operation“). What was he doing there? Among the Serbian forces who entered Srebrenica in July 1995 were soldiers belonging to the Uzice Corps (see: “Srbijanci u Potočarima“, “Serbians in Potočari“). What were they doing there?

    Daniel Toljaga
    Institute for the Research of Genocide, Canada
    http://www.instituteforgenocide.ca

    Marko Attila Hoare

    29/12/2010 at 09:14

  106. The Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA) ceased to exist in 1992.

    PJD

    29/12/2010 at 11:43

  107. As someone from a Jewish refugee family, I have no patience for people who abuse the phrase genocide denial for political purposes, in the way that is so obviously being done here.

    The origin of Hoare’s and Toljaga’s charge of “genocide denial” is an endnote in my book (p. 281), in which I presented an extended quote from the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal. The quote criticizes the 2003 Krstic decision by the international tribunal at The Hague, which had originally defined the Srebrenica massacre as a case of genocide. The cited article strongly implies that the court had erred in defining that massacre as genocide. Based on the evidence in the article, my endnote concluded that Srebrenica was closer to a war crime than to a genocide. This endnote became the basis of Hoare’s entire claim that I am a “genocide denier.”

    If I cannot cite and agree with an article in a Yale law review without being attacked like this, then there is something profoundly wrong with the way this discussion is taking place.

    The seemingly out of control Mr. Hoare must realize that in spreading around such scurrilous material, he is doing more damage to his own reputation than to mine.

    David Gibbs

    29/12/2010 at 15:31

  108. Mr Gibbs, your ethnic background is wholly irrelevant to the matter under discussion. Whether you are Jewish or not has no bearing on whether or not you engage in genocide denial.

    As I have already explained, the fact that you deny Srebrenica was an act of genocide is not the only reason I have described your work as constituting genocide-denial. There is also the fact that in your sections on Srebrenica (pp. 153-154, 161-162), you falsely portray the Srebrenica Muslims as the ones principally guilty of the violence in the Srebrenica region, and of ‘creating the hatred’ there – despite the fact that most of the killing in the region was the work of the Serb forces.

    You further claim ‘The origin of the Srebrenica massacre lay in a series of Muslim attacks that began in the spring of 1995.’ I believe that is called blaming genocide on the victims. Your work involves both denying the crime of genocide and minimising the responsibility of the Serb perpetrators.

    The Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal article by Katherine G. Southwick that you cite, unlike you, does not blame the genocide on the victims. This is what she says (pp. 193-194):

    ‘In the spring of 1995, the Bosnian Serbs planned to attack Srebrenica definitively. Radovan Karadzić, President of Republika Srpska, issued a directive to the VRS forces to “complete the physical separation of Srebrenica from Zepa as soon as possible, preventing even communication between individuals in the two enclaves. By planned and well-thought out combat operations, create an unbearable situation of total insecurity with no hope of further survival or life for the inhabitants of Srebrenica.” This was an order to ethnically cleanse Srebrenica. Citing a Prosecution exhibit, the court suggested that the order was a reaction by Karadzić to international pressure to end the war and negotiate a peace agreement: He sought to take the area while he still had time, before an agreement could be reached. In response to the Bosnian Serb capture of an observation post on May 31, 1995, Bosnian Muslim soldiers attacked a Serb village in late June. This helped provide an excuse for the Bosnian Serb takeover of Srebrenica.’

    If you really do agree with Southwick’s interpretation, why did you not include this information in your own account of the fall of Srebrenica ?

    Marko Attila Hoare

    29/12/2010 at 16:31

  109. The seemingly out of control Mr. Hoare must realize that in spreading around such scurrilous material, he is doing more damage to his own reputation than to mine.


    That depends on what kind of reputation you are trying to build up. For someone angling to be seen in league with Oliver Kamm, Christopher Hitchens, Paul Berman, Michael Ignatieff, and Harry’s Place, I’d say that Hoare is doing a pretty good job.

    louisproyect

    29/12/2010 at 17:24

  110. Perhaps we should return to some perspective, Prof. Gibbs book is not a history of Yugoslavia nor is it a detailed study of Bosnia or Srebrenica, its a critique of western intervention and the diplomatic relations around the conflict.

    Asteri

    29/12/2010 at 17:35

  111. I see Hoare is still using smear tactics to divert attention to his support for the appalling Martin Spegelj and his plans to launch a nationalist war of slaughter.

    He wouldn’t like you to know that the tapes have been admitted in evidence to his former employers the ICTY and their content and authenticity have not been challenged there.

    From a pro-NATO news source

    http://iwpr.net/report-news/karadzic-talks-%E2%80%9Chighway-hell%E2%80%9D

    ‘After being chided several times by judges for not focusing on the time period in his indictment, Karadzic proceeded to show video footage featuring former Croatian defence minister Martin Spegelj.

    The well-known black and white footage, which aired on Yugoslav television stations in January 1991, features Spegelj talking to undercover counter-intelligence officers from the Yugoslav People’s Army, JNA, about preparing Croatian forces for war.

    “This will be a civil war with no consideration towards anyone—not even women and children,” Spegelj says in the footage.

    Spegelj also remarks that “we’re going to slaughter them now that this whore has won in Serbia” and “Serbs in Croatia will never be there again for as long as we are”.

    After watching the footage, Donia said that he “loves this video.”

    “It is a very dramatic moment that shows both the advanced point at which Croatian defence forces are preparing for conflict and the degree to which the counter-intelligence service of the JNA was intent on discrediting the Croatian leadership,” Donia continued.’

    Robert Donia is the prosecution’s expert witness, who would have discredited the evidence of the tapes if possible. He didn’t even try.

    Marko also fails to say who armed Tudjman and Spegelj.

    Unlike Hoare who supported, and indeed in his own words celebrated, the ethnic cleansing of the Krajina – I oppose all acts of ethnic cleansing.

    As for the claim that I am a supporter of Milosevic – did you learn that smear technique from your time as a propagandist with the WRP?

    Erica Blair

    29/12/2010 at 18:05

  112. Here’s Hoare’s own pompous manifesto justifying his oh so righteous right to label anyone who disagrees with him a ‘genocide denier’: In a democracy, people must enjoy freedom of speech. People are free to deny that the Srebrenica massacre happened; or to claim that it was simply a ‘response’ to Bosniak ‘provocation’; or that Serb ethnic-cleansing was fabricated by the Western media; or that the Bosnian army shelled its own people in order to blame it on the Serbs; or that Yugoslavia was destroyed by a Western imperialist conspiracy. But equally, the rest of us are free – indeed, we are obliged – to call such people by their true names: genocide-deniers; disseminators of anti-Bosniak hate-speech. To stifle such naming and shaming – on the grounds that left-wingers, or academics, or others should be above being criticised in this way by virtue of being left-wingers or academics or whatever – is to strike a blow against frank public discourse in favour of Orwellian doublespeak; to legitimise genocide denial while de-legitimising its critics.

    Recently disclosed at the ICTY – Major-General David Fraser, who was military assistant to the UN protection force’s (UNPROFOR) sector Sarajevo commander from April 1994 to May 1995, appeared as witness for the prosecution in the Karadzic trial.

    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.”

    Whilst some may overplay the role of mujahideen in Bosnia and the creation of a ‘Balkan Caliphate’, General Fraser’s under-oath statement demonstrates that at least some of the Bosniak army were capable of Hamas levels of cynical manipulation in shooting their own people, including children.

    Hoare, great historian that he is, however knows a priori that it couldn’t be so since his dictum makes it plain that it, er, couldn’t be so.

    frunobulax

    29/12/2010 at 18:46

  113. So Bliar/Resisssstor treats Radovan Karadzic as a reliable ‘source’ for evaluating the organiser of Croatia’s resistance to Milosevic. Just as in an earlier debate on Harry’s Place, he treated Milosevic’s close ally Bosko Kostic as a reliable ‘source’ for his claim that the JNA wasn’t really Serb-dominated. He claims the ICTY is a ‘kangaroo court’, but then decides that because someone there (Karadzic !) made an accusation against Spegelj which someone else didn’t challenge, then its proceedings should suddenly be treated as gospel after all. He tries to smear Spegelj on the basis of a tape created by Yugoslav military intelligence to frame him, which even his own Wikipedia (! Yes, he relies on Wikipedia !) source says is unreliable.

    For the record, Yugoslav military intelligence doctored what Spegelj was saying on the tape to make it look as if he were advocating the killing of civilians, which he wasn’t. No evidence has ever emerged to suggest that Spegelj was involved in war crimes against Serbs or anyone else, though he certainly had plenty of opportunity during the war in Croatia. But Spegelj was certainly – and quite rightly – planning armed resistance to Serbian aggression.

    Bliar actually denies that Serbia attacked Bosnia in 1992. I wonder how he explains the fact that the Uzice Corps, a JNA corps based in Serbia, was centrally involved in the Serb conquest of East Bosnia in 1992. Or the fact that all regular Serb forces in Bosnia were under the exclusive and formal control of Serbia and Montenegro until 19 May 1992; or the fact that Serbia’s former representative on the Yugoslav Presidency, Borisav Jovic, admits in his own published diary that the Bosnian Serb army was organised by the leaderships of Serbia and the JNA; or the fact that Bosnian Serb commander Ratko Mladic was handpicked for the role by the leaderships of Serbia and the Yugoslav army; or the fact that Zeljko Raznatovic Arkan’s Tigers – organised in Serbia using fans from Belgrade’s Red Star football club – spearheaded the conquest of Bijeljina in April 1992; or the fact that Vojislav Seselj admitted that his paramilitary forces were under JNA command during their early operations in East Bosnia in 1992; or the fact that an officer from Serbia, Momcilo Perisic, directed the JNA’s bombardment of Mostar in April 1992. Etc. etc.

    And after all this, this truly repellent little liar and hypocrite tries to claim that ‘I oppose all acts of ethnic cleansing’ !

    Truly, Professor Gibbs, you are in some charming company.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    29/12/2010 at 19:55

  114. ‘General Fraser’s under-oath statement demonstrates that at least some of the Bosniak army were capable of Hamas levels of cynical manipulation in shooting their own people, including children.’

    No it doesn’t; it demonstrates that some in the UN were and remain deeply hostile to the Muslim people and their defenders and ready to smear them in the service of their own anti-Bosnian, anti-Muslim agenda.

    Though as I noted above, the likes of Frunobulax will believe unquestioningly all testimony from Western officials directed against Muslims, no matter how tendentious and implausible, while being somewhat less ready to accept testimony of Western officials concerning Serb wrong-doing.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    29/12/2010 at 20:06

  115. ‘For the record, Yugoslav military intelligence doctored what Spegelj was saying on the tape to make it look as if he were advocating the killing of civilians, which he wasn’t.’

    They didn’t and he was. The tape is authentic and would have been challenged by the prosecution if they could. You worked for the ICTY, if you could have proved the tape to be doctored, you might have earned your money.

    ‘But Spegelj was certainly – and quite rightly – planning armed resistance to Serbian aggression.’ Which hadn’t taken place. He was planning mayhem and murder. Some hero!

    In any case don’t need to speculate because Tudjman and Spegelj did go on to prove it to be authentic by killing civilians in Croatia and Bosnia. You are a proud supporter and celebrator of ethnic cleansing when it is Croats expelling Serbs. I think we need no more evidence to prove what sort of person you are. I take your insults as a compliment.

    Erica Blair

    29/12/2010 at 20:17

  116. No it doesn’t; it demonstrates that some in the UN were and remain deeply hostile to the Muslim people and their defenders and ready to smear them in the service of their own anti-Bosnian, anti-Muslim agenda.

    This, under oath statement, at the very least should serve as a basis for further inquiry. But Hoare takes it as axiomatic that any evidence contrary to his notions is “anti-Bosnian, anti-Muslim”. Joe McCarthy? More like Joe Stalin! Hoare, you’re WRP to the core.

    frunobulax

    29/12/2010 at 20:58

  117. Whether or not the tapes are doctored or authentic is irrelevant; in war it’s actions that count not words, it doesn’t matter if Martin thought out loud about “mayhem and murder” unless evidence (and no Erica, Serbianna is not a good source) exists supporting such claims Erica posted a strawman argument. Besides Erica seems rather unconcerned about the Radovan Karadzic wiretaps and of course Karadzic’s involvement in genocide is unquestionable. As for Fraser, once again you need direct evidence to support lies about the defenders of Bosnia “targeting their own civilians” they had limited ammunition and resources (unlike the Serbian agressors) must like the Armenian resistance fighters in 1915 so the idea that they would waste ammunition on their own is sheer lunacy. As Hoare pointed out people promoting blatant fiction about the BiH defenders killing their own civilians are using a tactic employed by Spanish fascists who blamed the shelling of the Basque town of Guernica on the victims.

    Riley

    29/12/2010 at 23:47

  118. […] The bizarre world of genocide denial” by Marko Attila Hoare. (2) 20 December 2010: “ The Second Coming of Joe McCarthy: David Gibbs Responds to Hoare’s Criticisms” by David N. Gibbs. (3) 24 December 2010: “First Check Their Sources: On David N. Gibbs […]

  119. Frunobulax, you Chetnik, it’s people like you who give Serbs everywhere a bad name.

    Alex Zivanovic

    30/12/2010 at 10:19

  120. dear ‘frunobulax’, sorry to pop your bubble but such things (‘some in the UN were and remain deeply hostile to the Muslim people and their defenders’) are terribly real then and now. To naively think otherwise is more revealing of your prejudice than your judgment. And to extend the observation to compare Hoare with Big Black Joe is more of ho ho ho. Bit less off the personal and bit more of the rational will help the discussion although i daresay you are beyond the rational.

    iko

    30/12/2010 at 10:39

  121. Dear ‘iko’, apologies – I’m still very much on this side of the divide I’m afraid, and my bubble is quite unpopped, thank you. I don’t doubt that “some” in the UN could be “hostile” to whatever race/group your care to name. What is odd however is to pronounce ‘ex catherdra’ as Hoare does that such opportunist attacks could never, ever have occurred.

    Check out Hoare’s attack on the Guardian for it’s use of inverted commas re: Racak. Then do a little searching around, I believe that you will find that there is plenty to warrant the use of the dreaded quotation marks. Here’s a starting point:

    http://www.b92.net/eng/news/crimes-article.php?yyyy=2008&mm=10&dd=23&nav_id=54430

    (Hoare links to the B92 website, so I assume it’s safe to go there.)

    frunobulax

    30/12/2010 at 11:23

  122. Hoare has said something that should not stand. A previous posting noted a General David Fraser, who testified at the Karadzic trial about the Muslims shooting at their own civilians and then blaming the Serbs.

    Hoare responds:

    “It [Fraser’s testimony] demonstrates that some in the UN were and remain deeply hostile to the Muslim people and their defenders and ready to smear them in the service of their own anti-Bosnian, anti-Muslim agenda.”

    In fact Fraser was a PROSECUTION witness, and the information about
    Muslims staging atrocities was admitted under cross examination.

    http://www.icty.org/x/cases/karadzic/trans/en/101018IT.htm

    louisproyect

    30/12/2010 at 15:53

  123. Readers will, I hope, forgive me for pointing out something that is extremely obvious for the benefit of some of our pro-Milosevic chums who don’t have much of an idea about how the ICTY works.

    The ICTY prosecution is involved in the indictment and prosecution of suspected war-criminals from the ranks of all the participants in the wars in the former Yugoslavia – Muslims, Serbs, Croats, Albanians and Macedonians. Its job in the Karadzic trial is to secure the conviction of Radovan Karadzic, not to defend the reputations of Martin Spegelj, or of the Bosnian army in Sarajevo.

    Prosecution witnesses are ready to testify against Karadzic. That does not exactly make them all supporters of the Croatians or Bosnians.

    For example, Milan Babic, one of the leaders of the Serb-nationalist revolt against Croatia in 1990, subsequently testified at the ICTY as a prosecution witness against Milosevic.

    No doubt the pro-Milosevic crowd on this thread would like to claim that that made Babic a totally reliable and objective judge of all Croat or Muslim wrongdoing.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    30/12/2010 at 16:37

  124. ‘The ICTY prosecution is involved in the indictment and prosecution of suspected war-criminals from the ranks of all the participants in the wars in the former Yugoslavia – Muslims, Serbs, Croats, Albanians and Macedonians.’

    But convicts Serbs almost exclusively.

    Now Marko is claiming that General Fraser is committing perjury.

    What on earth could his motivation be – as a prosecution witness – to tell lies in the witness box that help the defence?

    I’m afraid Marko is one of those conspiracy theorists who needs to add yet more ludicrous claims in order to prop up his teetering hypothesis.

    Erica Blair

    30/12/2010 at 16:56

  125. our pro-Milosevic chums Another cheap-shot slur.

    Readers will, I hope, forgive me for pointing out something that is extremely obvious, General David Fraser isn’t Milan Babic, nor is he one of the leaders of the Serb-nationalist etc. etc.

    I expect that General Fraser is also well aware of the meaning of perjury.

    frunobulax

    30/12/2010 at 17:15

  126. From

    http://normblog.typepad.com/normblog/2008/08/the-normblog-profile-258-marko-attila-hoare.html

    ‘Who are your political heroes? > Those with whom I most identify are Tony Blair, Latinka Perovic and Stjepan Mesic. ‘

    Funny how so many of your heroes are war criminals.

    As for Stjepan Mesic, the man who called the Nazi invasion of Yugoslavia a victory for Croatia?

    http://www.ejpress.org/article/37592

    ‘Mesic has often spoken out against the Nazi sympathisers in Croatia, but faced embarrassment in 2006 when comments emerged in which he apparently spoke approvingly of the pro-Nazi regime.
    He issued an apology following the publication of remarks in a 1992 speech in Australia.
    In the speech, Mesic said Croatians had scored two historic victories — one when the pro-Nazi Ustasha state was founded in 1941 and the other when anti-fascists won at the end of World War II.
    Hundreds of thousands of Jews, Serbs, gypsies and Croatian anti-fascists died in concentration camps set up by Croatia’s pro-Nazi regime during World War II.’

    Does Marko identify with Mesic because he condemned the Ustasha in public, but supported them in private?

    Erica Blair

    30/12/2010 at 17:17

  127. Stjepan Mesic – a man who publicly broke with Tudjman and Great Croatian nationalism, condemned and eventually reversed Tudjman’s anti-Bosnian policy, and supported the prosecution of Croatian war-criminals by the ICTY in the face of domestic nationalist opposition. A reformed nationalist who presided over Croatia’s transition to democracy after Tudjman’s death. Rather like Zoran Djindjic in Serbia.

    Even in the ranks of the nuttiest Serb nationalists and their Western supporters, I’ve yet to come across anyone who thinks Mesic is a ‘war criminal’. Resissstor is the first. That he is supporter of Milosevic and Karadzic and a denier of their crimes is probably not accidental.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    30/12/2010 at 17:43

  128. Is’t Major-General David Fraser now a Canadian NATO commander in Afghanistan? if he had a known anti-Muslim agenda it would make him a leathal choice for such a role in a Muslim counrty.

    Asteri

    30/12/2010 at 18:24

  129. All this talk about war criminals is really quite amusing. Senator Henry “Scoop” Jackson voted for a war that cost the lives of millions of Vietnamese and nearly 60,000 American soldiers. This is a war that was launched on the basis of a lie, the Gulf of Tonkin resolution just the way that the war in Iraq, that his Henry Jackson Society website defends right down the line, was based on a lie about WMD’s. A double standard? No, as Chomsky once pointed out, there is a single standard. Marko Hoare has elected to serve as a mouthpiece for Anglo-American imperialism, just like Christopher Hitchens, Michael Ignatieff and Paul Berman. The single standard is defense of Western imperialism, the subject that is at the heart of David Gibbs’s book, not defending Serb “genocide”.

    louisproyect

    30/12/2010 at 18:45

  130. @Louis

    And you proudly identify as a Marxist; the same ideology which led to the deaths of more people than Iraq and Vietnam combined, double standard indeed, you remind me of Hiroo Onoda.

    Slaine

    30/12/2010 at 22:57

  131. Or some of us find it ironic that Louis complains about Henry Jackson and Vietnam, when Louis has spent most of his life groveling before the Butcher of Kronstadt and the murderer of prisoners of war during the Russian Civil War. Not to mention Trotsky never tried to stop the Checka’s blood bath.

    Andrew Murphy

    31/12/2010 at 03:44

  132. Louis is attempting to change the topic in order to divert attention away from the fact that Gibbs lost this debate; he complains about a ‘double standard’ ye his heroes are communist butchers.

    chroniclinghate

    31/12/2010 at 03:47

  133. Frunobulax, it is because of Chetniks like you that Serbia started and lost four wars. Stop blaming Serb crimes on the Bosniaks, Fruno.

    Alex Zivanovic

    31/12/2010 at 10:16

  134. I suggest you read the whole testimony from Gen. Fraser (ICTY /transcripts/ 18/12/10 from 22nd Oct ) before getting too caught up in the spiel. He was overwhelmingly condemning of Serbs’ indiscriminate and illegal use of weaponry ( particularly the use of aerial bombs basically a devastating detonation without any capacity for accuracy but designed for maximum carnage) that was designed to inflict terror and indiscriminate civilian fatalities and he was emphatically dismissive of any claims that they were aimed at Moslem army concentrations. When he was asked to speculate about the legitimacy of targeting civilian areas if these areas were used to house army personnel he said if he received such an order he would refuse to follow it no matter the consequence.
    His one moment where he referred to Bos Moslem targeting civilians to maintain UNPROFOR support was based on hearsay reports not from his own observation and he followed protocol and asked/ ‘warned’ both sides to ensure that civilians were not targeted. This followed the established procedures to treat both sides with ‘unequivocal neutrality’. (!) and in effect added to the myth, so querulously and overtly politically accepted by a number of commentators on this blog, that all sides were somehow equally guilty; although from the accounts here it appears a number believe that it wasn’t simply that the Moslems were unquestionably the perpetrators of the violence but the Serbs were the true underdogs and the stoic victims of the conflict – contrary to the overwhelming majority of media accounts from those in the field , UN reports, academic investigative and historical writings, eye witness testaments and now testimony from the ICTY witnesses – but these i am now informed are reactionary propagandists for western imperialists and the personal accounts are all biased distortions and guided by vested interests and the ICTY is transparently a kangaroo court that only targets Serbs based upon numbers of indictments and convictions. A superficial examination of the trials and the tabled prioritizing rationale of the prosecution makes more sense than the suggestion that it is all a ‘show trial’ exercise.
    Hoare mentions Gibbs’ lack of expertise in the language, a hindrance but not a real obstacle as use of translations is a long accpeted practice in research however where it is of use is in collecting primary resources- from people and places. Even so with a map and a phrase book most of you can visit the places that are mentioned in the courts and on this blog. Take a tally sheet and a 1984 Olympic tour book which highlights the must see sights of BiH and make the journey. If you doubt the veracity of the current accounts then see for yourself the graves, the bulldozered heritage listed sights, compare the standing cultural monuments such as Orthodox churches and cemeteries and archival depositories with the non Serb equivalent. Plot a tour that follows the conflict from the NE then down the Drina and up and across to Sarajevo.
    Visit RS it’s all very accommodating now but ask yourself is this a community you would like your children to grow up in; culturally homogenous, cleansed of the presence of the ‘other’, the adornments of a thinly veneered practicing apartheid. I won’t go as far as to say what else i believe it to be built upon but one visit there and a discerning eye and simple research skills will reveal the rest.
    I invite you to attend the services on 11th July go to both the Bosniaks commemoration of their collective loss and then go to the surrounding areas where there are deliberate parallel Orthodox services- the difference is readily apparent, it is not an interpretative exercise it is simply a stark visual reality of the scale of the comparative losses. Dare ask a resident in RS particularly in places like Visegrad, Foca, Srebrenica, Prijedor and ‘what did you do during the war?’ Or why were the mosques destroyed? Or where are the old cemeteries? No matter your sympathies for the Serb nationalists’ interpretation of the events so easily espoused here, I can guarantee you it will give you a glimpse of what befell the missing and the displaced. Knowing the language helps but some communication transcends words. Of course go to the ‘other side’ Tuzla and Sarajevo and Konjic and ask the same or similar questions. Come on down and see the living reality. Be adventurous if nothing else.
    As to the comment of anti Moslem prejudice from Fraser there is little evidence supporting he was anti Moslem as such, but he was certainly disdainful of the Bosnian leadership as were many other Generals before and after him. This reaction springs from mixed origin; the leadership’s facilitating decisions, media opportunism and confrontational meetings. I won’t list the reasons for such a perception except to ask you to imagine yourself in such a situation and what you would be able to do given your experience and training based on a society at peace or even under transition and what a situation of conflict would demand of you. Bosnians were under siege from day 1 their initial objective was survival. The Serb’s objective was by comparison much more definitive, conquest. Read the accounts of any city under similar circumstances; Warsaw, Prague, Amsterdam, Barcelona and you will see many similarities in confusion, disbelief, desperation and in the end single mindedness and mistrust of those who declared support but provided little.
    Fraser now spares few words in his open disgust of Serbian tactics to exercise their military advantage and saw it for what it was, ‘criminal’. Yet he was strangely civil in his dealings with the Serbian leadership at the time – methinks the smell of the military trappings of the Serbs he found too familiar which perhaps partially explains his current condemnation today.

    iko

    31/12/2010 at 11:43

  135. Iko – “Visit RS it’s all very accommodating now but ask yourself is this a community you would like your children to grow up in[?]”

    Well Santa Claus/Grandfather Frost isn’t banned in RS.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2008/dec/21/balkans-christmas-school

    http://www.b92.net/eng/news/region-article.php?yyyy=2010&mm=12&dd=29&nav_id=71816

    “culturally homogenous, cleansed of the presence of the ‘other’, the adornments of a thinly veneered practicing apartheid.”

    There are more Bosniaks and Croats in RS than there are Serbs in the Federation.

    PJD

    31/12/2010 at 12:22

  136. I see that this time Marko uses a different tactic. He can’t try to deny that Mesic praised the Nazi invasion of Yugoslavia. He also knows the context of the speech. Mersic was speaking to far-right, pro-Ustasha emigre groups in Australia. He was sending out the message that he was one of them.

    So let’s list Marko’s heroes:

    Tony Blair – war criminal
    Stjepan Mesic – fascist
    Martin Spegelj – murderer and ethnic cleanser
    Henry ‘Scoop’ Jackson – genocidal bomber

    Notice a pattern here?

    Erica Blair

    31/12/2010 at 12:36

  137. For the record, the rumours that the Bosnian army in Sarajevo was guilty of shelling its own civilians to blame it on the Serbs was comprehensively examined by Professor Charles Ingrao of Purdue University, whose article covering the topic was endorsed by a team of twenty scholars, including the aforementioned Robert Donia and Professor Darko Gavrilovic of the University of Banja Luka (Charles Ingrao, ‘Safe Areas’, in Charles Ingrao and Thomas A. Emmert (eds), ‘Confronting the Yugoslav Controversies: A Scholars’ Initiative’, Purdue University Press, 2009, pp. 201-229).

    Professor Ingrao examined the three most notorious massacres of Sarajevo civilians during the siege, around which the rumours of Bosnian self-shelling have principally revolved: the May 1992 breadline massacre and the Markale marketplace massacres of February 1994 and August 1995. He noted that ‘The only “evidence” of ARBiH [Bosnian army] culpability in the three attacks comes from Bosnian Serb sources’, and goes on to demonstrate the attempts by Serb sources to frame the Bosnians as having shelled themselves.

    He found there was no evidence to show that any of these three attacks had been carried out by the Bosnian side, though he noted that in the second attack, the forensic examination couldn’t prove the origin of the shell either way, while in the third attack, some Western intelligence officers dispute the origin of the shell. Yet in at least one case, a UN colonel did deliberately lie about the evidence in order to frame the Bosnian army.

    In Ingrao’s words: ‘A detailed forensics report for the second Markale explosion presented at General Milosevic’s ICTY trial appears to establish that the shell came from a VRS [Bosnian Serb army] position, a judgment that has always been disputed by Russian UNPROFOR Colonel Andrei Demurenko, who was initially reprimanded by his superiors and dismissed from the ICTY trials of Generals Galic and Milosevic after he admitted to knowingly misrepresenting the existence and substance of the report, as well as the scientific credentials and procedures employed by the Russian team investigating the report.’

    So, that is the best answer to those trusting souls who believe UN officers are incapable of lying. I’m not going to speculate about whether Fraser is consciously lying or whether he actually believes his own propaganda, but his accusations of deliberate Bosnian self-shelling reflect the anti-Bosnian, anti-Muslim agenda of those UN commanders in Bosnia who spent the 1992-1995 war aiding and abetting the Serb aggression.

    It is one thing to say that in the chaos of war, Bosnian [and other] forces may have sometimes accidentally fired on their own civilians. But the idea that Bosnian forces deliberately and systematically did so in order to frame the Serb besiegers who were anyway massacring thousands of Sarajevo civilians, so as to provoke Western military intervention, is perhaps the most despicable of all the myths used to whitewash the Serb aggressors.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    31/12/2010 at 12:43

  138. As Gibbs has long since abandoned the debate, I am now going to do the same. I have absolutely no desire to waste my time slugging it out with the anonymous trolls on this thread who enjoy this kind of hate-fest. I don’t – personally, I feel unclean even inhabiting the same cyber-space as them. Blair/Resissstor’s disgusting smears against first Spegelj, now Mesic, simply mark him down as Croatophobic racist scum.

    I note, however, that our pro-Milosevic trolls haven’t attempted to counter my refutation of Gibbs. Their poisonous comments may aim to divert attention from Gibbs’s failings, but those failings are on record for all to see.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    31/12/2010 at 13:12

  139. I did not smear either Spegelj or Mesic, I just pointed out what they said. In the case of Spegelj – Hoare tried to pretend he didn’t say what he said. In the case of Mesic’s praise for the Nazi/Ustasha regime, Hoare had no response. He was reduced to ‘Croatophobic racist scum’, which might be acceptable discourse at Kingston’University’ – but makes his pretentions to academic status look rather silly. For a self-declared supporter of ethnic cleansing, Marko Attila Hoare certainly has some cheek.

    I think Professor Gibbs has made his case rationally, and has shown up Hoare to be the charlatan we have known him to be while on his fast track journey from the far-left to the far-right.

    Erica Blair

    31/12/2010 at 17:10

  140. Marko Hoare’s New Factual Errors

    I too have tired of this debate. However, one of Hoare’s recent postings contains yet another factual error, so egregious that it requires correction.
    With regard to my book, Hoare states (29/12/10, 16:31):

    “in your sections on Srebrenica (pp. 153-154, 161-162), you falsely portray the Srebrenica Muslims as the ones principally guilty of the violence in the Srebrenica region, and of ‘creating the hatred’ there – despite the fact that most of the killing in the region was the work of the Serb forces.”

    Wrong. This is what my book actually states (p. 161):

    “the capture of Srebrenica led to atrocities that were far larger in scale than anything that had occurred during three years of fighting… the Serb armies began by expelling the town’s women and children, producing yet another act of ethnic cleansing. And then the Serbs proceeded to murder some eight thousand military age Muslim males. According to the Dutch investigation of the massacre: ‘Muslims were slaughtered like beasts.’”

    And throughout, the book shows that most of the killing and aggression was undertaken by Serb forces. Hoare’s claims to the contrary are in error.

    Those who read back over my previous postings will see that Hoare has repeatedly made erroneous claims, and then failed to correct his errors. The above is only one example.

    David Gibbs

    31/12/2010 at 22:05

  141. In his last “farewell” posting, Hoare refers to those who disagree with his views as “Croatophobic racist scum” and “pro-Milosevic trolls.”

    And in a previous posting , Hoare attaches and seems to endorse a statement from Daniel Toljaga, which states:“Prof. Gibbs… has made a deliberate misinterpretation of facts.” In addition: “Gibbs’ pernicious denial of genocide calls into question not only his academic credibility, but his very qualifications to hold tenure at a university at all” (29/12/10, 9:14).

    Is Hoare a serious scholar? Readers can judge for themselves.

    David Gibbs

    31/12/2010 at 22:06

  142. Daniel Toljaga appears to have plagiarised this sentence:

    In addition: “Gibbs’ pernicious denial of genocide calls into question not only his academic credibility, but his very qualifications to hold tenure at a university at all.

    Richard L. Cravatts in the Jewish Tribune:

    But Siddique, it has been revealed since this recent furor began, has an even more pernicious intellectual defect, which calls into question not only his academic credibility, but his very qualifications to hold tenure at a university at all.

    http://www.jewishtribune.ca/TribuneV2/201011103685/Should-academic-free-speech-accommodate-Holocaust-denial.html

    PJD

    31/12/2010 at 23:39

  143. Is Gibbs a serious scholar? Readers can judge for themselves.

    The citation that Gibbs presents does not contradict what Marko Hoare has stated. On the contrary, it is another example that Gibbs refuses to qualify the massacre of Srebrenica as an act of genocide.

    This is the problem with Professor Gibbs. He refuses to acknowledge the genocidal nature of Srebrenica. He does not deny that a serious crime happened there, but Marko Hoare did not accuse him of denying that a serious crime occurred there. He mentions the message that is drawn from the combined reading of everything you write specifically about Srebrenica on your book and you reply by quoting in isolation one excerpt.

    So, the whole issue about your book was due to a very simple thing. Marko Hoare, after reading your book, came to the conclusion that you are a genocide denier, that is, a person that rejects the qualification of the massacre of Srebrenica as an act of genocide. He also quotes your statement in your book:

    “””‘Certainly, the murder of eight thousand people is a grave crime, but to call it “genocide” needlessly exaggerates the scale of the crime.’ (p. 281).””””

    So, whatever may be Marko Hoare’s connections with political currents that you don’t agree with, this is not about his ideological standing, or about how good or bad as a scholar he is, this is about you, Professor Gibbs, and I have to say that I read this attentively, as well as the links you published on this thread, and the parts of your book that are available on google books, and I am still not convinced that Marko is wrong in his appreciation.

    Denying that the most serious of all crimes, genocide, happened in Bosnia against the Bosnian Muslims (Bosniaks) is important for Professor Gibbs’s position against military intervention, because preventing or stopping a genocide can be considered a legitimate reason for intervention.

    Now, the specific quote that Gibbs invoked on his comment:

    “””Serb armies began by expelling the town’s women and children, producing yet another act of ethnic cleansing. And then the Serbs proceeded to murder some eight thousand military age Muslim males. “””

    Here’s the grave of one of these men of military age:

    13 year old Sadik Huseinovic, born in Vlasenica in 1982 (I took the photo myself). And although the vast majority of victims were males, women were also murdered as was the case with Hasan Nuhanovic’s mother. But even those who were not murdered were victims of genocide, as genocide is not only about murder. These people lived for three years in the most appalling conditions, many of them having arrived to Srebrenica fleeing other places in the region. They had no choice but to go to Srebrenica because they could not reach other, safer, places. The evacuation of Srebrenica and Zepa and the execution of more than 8000 people, mostly men, was only the culmination of an ongoing process, but not its final episode, because afterwards there was the removal of bodies for secondary and even tertiary mass graves, in an effort to hide the scale of the killings.

    I do now wish to proceed with this discussion, and I deplore the lack of moderation, which allowed the discussion to focus on secondary things. As for who is a serious scholar, and for who is arguing in good faith or not, of course it is for the readers to decide for themselves. But if these readers try to know more about Srebrenica from different credible sources, I am sure they will come to a conclusion very different from Gibbs’.

    Sarah Correia

    01/01/2011 at 12:00

  144. There is little doubt in my mind after reading these comments from the above contributors that Hoare’s translation of the events, here and elsewhere, that BiH suffered has greater credence than the voices that either counter him or belittle him. There is much evidence here of political maneuvering and little of factual evidential discussion and even less of compassion for those who continue to suffer from the destruction of a principle of coexistence and non violent resolution to political development. Those that condone the terror or ‘ethnic cleansing’ ( such a term is not merely euphemistic it is emotional dislocation at its worst and intellectual cowardice at its highest and when used should be howled down for what it is) deserve the scrutiny they receive for they portray something of their own political hypocrisy and moral ambivalence. Hoare may not be 100% accurate in his conclusions or criticisms of people such as Gibbs but his account of the conflict is closer to the mark than Gibbs and certainly far closer than any of the petty political ostriches who have flapped their wings to no avail. Tis sad to see the results when intelligence is confined to a narrow set of parameters, preventing one from seeing what the sound and fury should really be all about; a good and fair life for all. Bosnians were denied it. For a brief moment they thought they could start to get close to it. Fools that they were. Zivjeli i sretna nova godina.

    iko

    01/01/2011 at 12:06

  145. While I find it distasteful to respond to a site dedicated to defaming Marko Attila Hoare, one of the finest contemporary experts on the wars in the former Yugoslavia, I feel moved to comment on swipes taken at my person. I don’t know how anybody could try to foster a conflict between myself and M.A. Hoare on the matter of Wahhabism and al-Qaida in the Bosnian war. We agree that the so-called mujahidin who went to Bosnia during the war did not affect its outcome, or even that of a single battle, and I am fairly certain that M.A.H. would agree with me that Wahhabism as an issue in Bosnian Islam did not emerge until after the Dayton ceasefire. Al-Qaida was not heard of before Dayton, anywhere except perhaps in Peshawar.

    The Iranians, as M.A.H. has pointed out, did much more, with the knowing assent of Clinton, to assist the Bosnian army than did the Saudis or any other Muslim state influenced by Wahhabism or its variants. Pakistan played no role in helping Bosnia except for a meaningless trip to Sarajevo by some Pakistani politicians. Aside from Iran the two Muslim countries that did the most to help Bosnia were Turkey and Malaysia, with money, not people or weapons. Wahhabi infiltration into Bosnia through the Saudi High Commission for Relief to Bosnia-Hercegovina has been many times documented in many places, including the role of people working in Saudi agencies in Sarajevo in the creation of al-Qaida. But most of this took place after Dayton, and involved a small group. At that time, so-called mujahidin were warned away from the Balkans because of the sudden and determining U.S. role. Instead, they went to the Caucasus.

    As to whether my work is taken seriously by academics, I am not an academic and am not impressed by the record of Western academics on either the Balkans (where tenured Serbophilia is common) or on Islam in general, where accommodation to Wahhabism was for too long taken for granted. All one needs to do to prove these points is to attend meetings of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, in which I have participated although not an academic, and the Middle East Studies Association.

    My book THE TWO FACES OF ISLAM, which exposed Wahhabism to a global public, was published in Bosnian and distributed free in mosques, as well as in Albanian, in Indonesian (with an introduction by former president Abdurrahman Wahid), with an edition pending in Farsi, and is now used in anti-Wahhabi and anti-Deobandi medresas in India as a text. Educated Saudis read English and know my books. My work has had more effect in the Muslim lands than in the West. Low blows at me do not dilute the accuracy of M.A. Hoare’s writing or the judgment of history on Serbian fascist imperialism. The whole world knows what the Serbs did in ex-Yugoslavia, including at Srebrenica, and those who try to argue that obvious fact away by “debunking” the case against Milosevic and his clique are beneath contempt.

    Naser Oric was and is a hero, who in any normal assessment would be put alongside the brave men and women of the anti-Nazi resistance movements as well as those revolutionaries who resisted Stalin. The verdict of history on Belgrade has already been delivered and is now a bit beyond the point of querulous argument. Trying to turn “neocon” into a insult is irrelevant. Most of the original members of the Committee for the Present Danger, the founding neoconservative entity, including Jeane Kirkpatrick and various AFL-CIO leaders, were Democrats.

    Beakerkin seems a nice enough guy but his claims about a woman from the Kosovar Jewish community considering me an eccentric are, as far as I know, unfounded. First, from the 1950s when the Prishtina synagogue and various old Islamic monuments were demolished by the Tito regime until 1999 there was no serious Kosovar Jewish community to speak of. A fake Jewish community was set up in the 1990s by Milosevic as part of the paradigm of attempting to reduce the Albanian majority in Kosovo by establishing numerous new ethnic interest groups. A genuine but small Jewish community was established after the 1999 war with Israeli support, based in the town of Prizren. I described its history in another book of mine, titled SARAJEVO ROSE, published — full disclosure — by the Bosnian Institute established by M.A. Hoare’s father. None of the publications of the Institute has ever been seriously discredited.

    Certainly the few Jews remaining in Kosovo had nothing to fear from the Albanians, who are Catholics and agnostics as well as Muslims.

    “Eccentric” is not an insult when referring to authors who publish books with serious academic and trade publishers as I have. Such criticisms are welcome but it is a plague of the internet that they are so typically, now, anonymous. Anonymous criticism is worth no more than the public reputation of the critic.

    Is M.A. Hoare a serious scholar? Yes. He can and has read the Yugoslav Slavic sources in their original languages. Nobody without such language skills is normally considered a serious scholar of any historical subject.

    Gibbs is flat wrong about moral equivalence between Milosevic and the other leaders in the successor states. I was there and saw and reported in the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE about what happened. Many of my early articles and reports on the collapse of Yugoslavia may be consulted at my website http://www.islamicpluralism.org.

    Slovenian leader Milan Kucan proposed the continuation of Yugoslavia as a loose economic union. Serbia said no and assaulted Slovenia, once the latter declared independence. The Croatian Communist Ante Markovic, who favored preservation of Yugoslavia with wide-ranging economic reforms, was denied his turn as Yugo president — by Serbia. Belgrade seized the foreign currency accounts of every Yugoslav citizen — an act that made war inevitable. I was in Zagreb when it happened. Izetbegovic and the Bosniak leaders did not want a war and tried to negotiate a continuation of Yugoslavia until the Serb fascists ended the debate by crossing the Drina to invade eastern Bosnia, committing massacres and other atrocities, and firing on civilians in Sarajevo. Even then the Bosniaks did not immediately mobilize. Izetbegovic at one point put himself in the hands of the Serb military, with his daughter, and the Communist leader Zlatko Lagumdzija, and had to be rescued by the Serbian but pro-Bosnian military officer Jovan Divjak and the Yugoslav special police officer Dragan Vikic, people and facts known to everyone in Sarajevo. Not the conduct of an aggressive leader.

    People unacquainted with the region seem not to notice that until 1998 — i.e. three years after Dayton — the Kosovar Albanian struggle was nonviolent. Every Kosovar Albanian over the age of 30 knows about nonviolence and even about Rosa Parks. And while the Serbian fascists and their apologists condemned the Slovenes, Croats (and now, the Kosovars) as secessionists, Belgrade said nothing about the independence of Macedonia — because Macedonia was poor and did not threaten Belgrade’s tax income from the better-developed republics, and also because Macedonia was Serbia’s bridge to Greece, a local stand-in, with Romania, for Moscow as a tool of the Orthodox-imperialist conspiracy.

    Better a neocon than a Trotskyist turned Stalinist and Milosevic apologist like Louie Proyect. Trotsky defended the Albanians against Serbian imperialism in 1912 and Lenin hated Russian Orthodox imperialism. But brilliant thinkers of the Proyect school do not care at all about the legacy of Trotsky or Lenin. Trotsky’s dispatches on these realities should make the whole leftist clique of Milosevic revisionists shrink in self-disgust.

    How is Gibbs a victim of McCarthyism? Nobody has said he should be removed from his post, notwithstanding his obviously absurd claims, like the resurrection of the charge that Germany provoked the destruction of Yugoslavia. In reality, Austria was much more involved in the emergence of the successor states and Austrian banks established themselves in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Kosovo quite early. But Gibbs is clearly one of that American kind of academics who depend on secondary sources and their own fantasies to support arguments nobody could take seriously. But to paraphrase Orwell, some things are so ridiculous only a Western academic would believe them.

    Is Proyect now an Islam expert? Berman has written nothing on intervention issues per se in some years.

    Stephen Schwartz

    01/01/2011 at 12:37

  146. Is Sarah Correia a serious scholar?

    Take a look at her blog.

    http://cafeturco.wordpress.com/

    Her blogroll includes a link to Marko’s Greater Surbiton blog.

    This is what she says about the lunatic Harry’s Place website.

    http://cafeturco.wordpress.com/2008/08/26/harrys-place-shut-down/

    ‘I regularly read and sometimes comment on Harry’s Place, a british blog that has been a light in the desert of ideas in which the democratic left seems to have let itself drag into.’

    Sorry Sarah, but you cannot be serious.

    Erica Blair

    01/01/2011 at 13:28

  147. This is just sad; Erica is an anonymous troll with no credibility whatsoever who takes wikipedia and the rambling of Karadzic seriously yet she thinks only she can judge who is a “serious scholar.” Erica failed to reply to any of Sarah’s arguments choosing instead to speed read through her blog and post a poorly constructed personal attack, because when you are a genocide denier and an ideological twin to Shinzo Abe like ‘Erica’ that is all you have. Erica is no position to judge Sarah for *gasp* following a website considering the hatred Erica posted (claiming the attack on Bosnia was a ‘myth’ for example I look forward to her take down of the western American-German- Muslim-Zionist imperialist lie about the blue sky). Erica whines about what she sees as ‘smear tactics’ I suggest that she goes to wikipedia and read their entry on projection.

    The Highwayman

    01/01/2011 at 13:55

  148. I looked at her blog thanks- didn’t know they existed before- are you seriously suggesting there is a problem with her reports?? Clearly you haven’t followed the continuing excesses of Serb Nationalists. If anything her posts are only the tip of the iceberg of shame. ‘Noz, zice Srebrenice’ Look it up and look into a mirror.

    iko

    01/01/2011 at 14:06

  149. Anyone who takes Harry’s Place seriously has no credibility.

    Erica Blair

    01/01/2011 at 14:32

  150. well, happy new year everybody.

    Asteri

    01/01/2011 at 15:37

  151. Just a note on my post on the blog Harry’s Place: as the link indicates, it was written in 2008, in the sequence of an attempt to have it shut down. I stand by my attitude of solidarity towards them at the time. Having said this, that statement is valid for that specific moment, and does not mean it applies to the posterior evolution of the content of HP, which I believe has decreased in quality and no longer corresponds in general to my own perspective. Unfortunately, I believe that the phrase cited in the above comment applies only to that particular period and I would not endorse it for the present. I think there was a moment that was lost, but it was, at the time I wrote that post, a very good blog, with very stimulating debate going on, and I do not regret having offered them my support at that moment.

    Still, it is significative that the anonimous who identifies himself as erica blair could not bring anything else from my blog to discredit me other than a post offering my solidarity towards a blog that was facing an attempt of censorchip.

    It is especially significant that this individual could not find anything that could be labeled as ‘anti-Serb’, or anti-Muslim, or anti-whoever.

    But thanks for the publicity!

    Sarah Correia

    01/01/2011 at 15:48

  152. Utter nonsense. The Harry’s Place of 2008 is indistinguishable from the one you can see today. For Sarah Correia to pretend otherwise is completely dishonest.

    Erica Blair

    01/01/2011 at 17:04

  153. Sure… anything other than agreeing with the anonimous who identifies himself as ‘erica blair’ is to be dismissed as dishonest, that is how you reflect on your appreciation of others your own values. It’s ironic that this person borrows his nickname from George Orwell.

    Indeed one thing that is clear to me and to anyone who reads the stuff that genocide deniers write and say and interprets such statements according to the established rules of interpretation is that double speak is widely present.

    But readers who do have good will, and seek for consistency in one’s arguments (consistency with facts and values) do know how to distinguish double speak from honest engagement.

    Sarah Correia

    01/01/2011 at 21:23

  154. As the old saying goes, “Truth is the first victim in war.” Dr. Hoare’s account of the war in the Balkans falls into this category.

    In 1995, we bombed the Bosnian Serbs over the Markale market place massacre. Yossef Bodansky, the author of “Bin Laden: The Man Who Declared War on America,” wrote in his book “Offensive in the Balkans,” the following:

    Phase Three started with the self-inflicted major terrorist provocation. On Friday 5, 1994, a major explosion rocked the Markale — Sarajevo’s main market place — causing heavy casualties. What was immediately described as the ubiquitous “Serb mortar shell” was actually a special charge designed and built with help from 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 corps of Bosnian Muslim troops killed in action (exchanged the day before in a ‘body swap’ with the Serbs) were paraded in front of cameras to raise the casualty counts.

    “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 finallyintervene military.”

    There were other reports from European newspapers such as The Sunday Times,” with headlines that read, “Serbs ‘not guilty’ of massacre, Experts warned US that mortar was Bosnian.” (1 Oct. 1995), and “US Framed Serbs for Market Bombing,” from the Stoneyhill Center, a British think tank. (Oct 1995).

    Allow me to quote the following:

    “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….What is today’s reality? The murderers of Jews, Serbs and Gypsies are back (in Croatia) from the U.S., Canada, Argentina where they fled after World War II. The Serbs fought the Nazis, they paid a terrible price for standing at the side of the allies against Hitler. Humanity owes them a debt of gratitude.” – John Ranz, Chairman of Survivors of Buchenwald Concentration Camp, USA.

    “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 HDZ (current ruling party of Croatia) adopted the old symbols of the fascist Ustasha (Nazi) regime from World War II. The new Croatian authorities have chosen as the state symbol the same checkered shield.” – Mechen Shelah, Israel Historian, University of Haifa.

    “What worries us, is that those in power in Croatia are largely the same as in the Nazi era. In some cases, they are exactly the same people, now in their seventies and back from exile under Communists. In other cases, they are children of the Ustash.” (Croatian Nazi Party). – Jewish leader, scholar and historian, Dr. Klara Mandich, The London Independent.

    “Thank God my wife is neither a Serb nor a Jew.” -Former Croatian president Franjo Tudjman from his book, “Wastelands of Historical Reality.” He was referring to the over one million Serbs, Jews and Gypsies who died so brutally in Croatia’s death camps during WWII, it even appalled the German SS.

    “Genocide is a natural phenomenon, in harmony with the societal and mythologically divine nature….Genocide is not only permitted, it is also recommended, even commanded by the world of the Almighty Yaweh, whenever it is useful for the survival or the restoration of the kingdom of the chosen nation [is he referring to Germany as well as Croatia???] or for the preservation and the spreading of its one and only current faith.” [Catholicism]. – Former Croatian president Franjo Tudjman from his book, “Wastelands of Historical Reality.”

    “But you can understand Croatia best by saying flatly that if there is one place in the world where a statue of Adolph Hitler would be revered, it would be in Zagreb (the capital of Croatia). – Edward Pearce, the [London] Evening Standard, 7 August 1995, “Victory smiles that hide the roots of evil.”

    “Croats will ‘kill people for the color of their skins.” – U.S. Colonel Fontenot, Commander of NATO forces in northeastern Bosnia.

    “Kill all Serbs and Jews including children so that not even the seeds of the beasts are left.” – Andrija Artukovic, Minister of the Interior in the “Independent State of Croatia.”

    “Pictures of dead or wounded (or raped) Serbs often fill the screens of the world’s television and print media, only to be re-labelled as dead or wounded or raped Croats or Muslims. Many Serbian victims — and the bulk of the victims of the conflict, contrary to popular reports, have been Serbs either from Bosnia and Herzegovina or from Croatia — not only suffer the indignity of defeat in death; they also are used in death as models in the macabre image, manipulation operation of the Croatians and the Muslim Bosnians. If the Vietnam War was lost to the United States by the negative television images of its own reporters, then the Balkan war against the Serbs are being won by Ustashi Croatia and the Muslim Bosnians by an active, planned manipulation of international television.” – Gregory R. Copley, Editor-in-Chief, Defense & Foreign Affairs Strategic Policy, (London) 31 December.

    I have many many more quotes.

    doctor13

    01/01/2011 at 23:09

  155. In typical fashion, Prof Hoare deals with serious questions with lies and obfuscation, topped off by bullying. His suggestion that there is no evidence that the SDA government participated in atrocities against its own people, for media effect, is simply absurd. The facts have been available for years and, while I admit that many incidents (eg Markale) will probably never be fully resolved, unlike Hoare and his ilk I find value in an actual debate about them. Further, as he must be aware, the facts of the Bosnian Army’s “Larks” special operations unit, which intentionally killed Sarajevo civilians for propaganda effect, have been known for years.

    Before he accuses me of “anti-Muslim hate-speech” or “genocide denial” or one of his other usual ad hominems, let me note that ALL sides in the Bosnian War participated in false-flag atrocities, because they were all trained by the Communist secret police (SDB and KOS), which routinely did such things; the SDA just proved more effective at this tactic, from a political/media viewpoint.

    About the essentially McCarthyite character of Prof Hoare’s attacks, suggested by Prof Gibbs, allow me to concur strongly. I hate to disappoint Prof Hoare, but his unprofessional attack on my book went unnoticed outside his rarified little circle. Nice try anyway.

    However, Prof Hoare’s candid admission of his atrocious conduct, in academic guise, should expose to readers what he is really about, as an academic and a person.

    J.R. Schindler

    J R Schindler

    01/01/2011 at 23:42

  156. Indeed one thing that is clear to me and to anyone who reads the stuff that genocide deniers write and say and interprets such statements according to the established rules of interpretation is that double speak is widely present.

    What nonsense. The USA killed millions of Vietnamese civilians in an illegal and immoral war and Hoare goes to work for a think-tank named in his honor. You people have no right to call anybody a genocide denier as long as this skeleton is in your closet. Of course, there is a certain consistency in all this. Defense of NATO in the Balkans and defense of the war in Vietnam flow from an imperialist logic. The final chapter of Gibbs’s book is all about the Harry’s Place, Christopher Hitchens phenomenon that includes the double-speak of attacking Gibbs as “genocide denier” while hoisting the Senator from Boeing on your shoulders.

    louisproyect

    02/01/2011 at 01:26

  157. Louis is in no position to accuse Hoare of anything considering the fact that he proudly identifies as a ‘marxist’ and speaks highly of communist mass murderers on his blog, he praised Mao as ‘the world’s greatest revolutionist’ as for Vietnam that is nothing more than a pathetic attempt to change the topic. Louis uses Serbian propaganda (the myth that Nasser Oric killed “thousands” or “hundreds” has been proven to be nothing but fiction) in order to attempt to argue that “both sides were just as bad” yet he presents the Vietnam war as a matter of good vs. evil while ignoring the countless people killed by the North Vietnamese the Hue massacre for example) and ethnic cleansing carried by communists.

    Riley Hogan

    02/01/2011 at 02:00

  158. Gibbs’s uncritical acceptance of the Serb nationalists’ self-exculpatory explanation that the killings at Srebrenica were a response to crimes against the local Serb population rather than the climax of the Drina Valley campaign of the spring/summer of 1992 suggests a surprising wilful ignorance on the part of a professional historian.

    His apparent willingness to disregard the detailed analysis carried out by the ICTY’s Trial and Appeal Chambers in coming to its finding of genocide on the basis of his assessment of the scale of the crime illustrates the danger of amateurs venturing onto the area of someone else’s competence without doing the necessary homework.

    Gibbs isn’t supposed to be proffering opinions like a bar-room lawyer. He is a tenured professor of history with a serious publisher. The public and fellow historians are entitled to more than assertions of opinion from him. If he can offer a competent refutation of the ICTY’s reasoning, including its analysis of the necessary scale for a crime of genocide, his work will merit discussion. Otherwise he would be well advised to leave the matter in the hands of experts.

    As an exercise in dramatic posturing Professor Gibbs’s flounce-gathering outrage at Marko Hoare’s criticism stands comparison with Ann Widdecombe’s performance of the tango on Strictly Come Dancing. But this isn’t celebrity entertainment we’re talking about here, genocide at Srebrenica is a matter of serious historical, legal and also political concern.

    Someone who opts to rely on discredited propaganda despite adequate opportunity for investigation and analysis would appear to have limited right to engage in any professional critique of the inadequacies of the media. Gibbs appears unconcerned that he is locating his “quality assurance” certifying body, the University of Arizona’s History Faculty, among those whom Ed Vulliamy has described in the context of another aspect of the 1992-1995 Serb nationalist campaign of murder and atrocity in Bosnia as “poisoning the well of history”.

    Owen

    02/01/2011 at 14:06

  159. I have to add that however much I find Louis Proyect’s position on Srebrenica incomprehensible, based on my hazy memory of the Vietnam War era I find the association of Henry Jackson’s name with humanitarian concern for civilians in time of war rather puzzling.

    Owen

    02/01/2011 at 14:28

  160. Sarah Correia makes the false accusation that I label anyone who disagrees with me as dishonest. Sometimes they are, as when she claims that the disgusting Harry’s Place pro-war hate site that she defended in 208 was in any way different from the pro-war hate site of today. Anyone who has had the briefest acquaintance with the contents of Harry’s Place from its inception knows it hasn’t changed one jot.

    Sorry Sarah, people who disagree with me can be mistaken, deluded or sometimes right. You are dishonest.

    Erica Blair

    02/01/2011 at 15:12

  161. Hey, Sarah, I had quit commenting here, but was checking my email in a small town library while on the road and thought I would have another look to see what had been happening. A lot has been added to this blog, but mostly sound and fury meaning nothing.

    One really fortunate development, though. I had meant to say a long time back that your comments seemed right on. Now thanks to “Erica Blair” (riffing on Orwell, another irony–negation of the negation of the negation, what?) I have found your awesome website. Looking forward to reading it.

    BTW Asteri, David Gibbs claims to have written an “applied” rather than a theoretical study (whatever that means) of foreign policy/humanitarian intervention, not a study on Balkan history. But if you look at the topics he discusses, many of them make little sense in a book focusing on foreign intervention. His arguments follow left denialist (and right denialist) talking points rather than a focused discussion of intervention. You know the drill–the Serb nationalists, yeah, they were bad but not so bad as you might think, and heck the other guys were as bad or probably worse; the camps were bad but not so bad as you might think, and everyone had camps; the war crimes/genocide testimonies are “atrocity stories” that can be reasonably critiqued by the likes of Diana Johnstone and Peter Brock; the Serbs were just taking back territory that they already controlled (citing a Serb nationalist counterfeit of a UN study, no less), so they had some claim to their 70%; The Bosnian sieges were bad but come on, the “Muslims” bombed themselves, after all; ad nauseam.

    BTW Gibbs claims to have a lot of primary sources in the South Slav languages in his book. That is simply untrue. And the sources he cites in French and German are not very significant (and some are cited dishonestly). He does know how to pad a bibliography, though. The dude learned something in grad school, I guess.

    Good news as that very few people outside the stalinoid ghetto take the denialist views of Gibbs or the trolls on this site seriously. Bad news is that this kind of denialism has contaminated the possibility of almost any positive response to the problems generated by global capitalism and imperialism. These Frankenstein lefts are like phagocytes keeping the stalinist corpse intact against any actual independent thinking. So, they are right when they talk of US genocide in Vietnam, but then they defend and lie about other genocides (including Cambodia, the Balkans, Rwanda, some continue to deny Stalin’s mass murders), so what good are they?

    I prefer not to choose between Scoop Jackson Democrats and those who cover up American crimes abroad, and Maoist/Stalinist wackjobs–the idea reminds me of Alija Izetbegovic’s comment that choosing between Tudjman and Milosevic was like the choice “between leukemia and a brain tumor.” But if people want to understand the Balkans they are going to have to turn to Marko and the scholarship he represents (which is sound) and the serious scholars he suggests (like the Ingrao book he mentioned, concerning the Sarajevo and other sieges, some of which can be found for free on line). As I said, Gibbs acknowledges relying on and learning from people on the right–in his case, however, the testimony of the rightists he promotes and supports (including the paleoconservative James Bissett and rightwing think-tanker Gregory R. Copley) is revisionist crap.

    Iko, you have seen through them, too. Good work and good comments.

    malachi

    02/01/2011 at 17:52

  162. Thanks, Malachi!

    Sarah Correia

    02/01/2011 at 18:09

  163. “BTW Asteri, David Gibbs claims to have written an “applied” rather than a theoretical study (whatever that means) of foreign policy/humanitarian intervention, not a study on Balkan history. But if you look at the topics he discusses, many of them make little sense in a book focusing on foreign intervention. His arguments follow left denialist (and right denialist) talking points rather than a focused discussion of intervention. You know the drill–the Serb nationalists, yeah, they were bad but not so bad as you might think, and heck the other guys were as bad or probably worse; the camps were bad but not so bad as you might think, and everyone had camps; the war crimes/genocide testimonies are “atrocity stories” that can be reasonably critiqued by the likes of Diana Johnstone and Peter Brock; the Serbs were just taking back territory that they already controlled (citing a Serb nationalist counterfeit of a UN study, no less), so they had some claim to their 70%; The Bosnian sieges were bad but come on, the “Muslims” bombed themselves, after all; ad nauseam. ”

    I don’t think it makes “little sence” its simply putting things in context with the history, are you saying he should have left all that out? Its also about analysing the doctrin of Serbs=evil and Muslim-Croat-Albanian=good, inocent and blameless etc. Acording to the latter the Yugoslav wars were the single worst atrosity in history except WWII/Holocaust and no one has ever suffered more than those at the hands of the Serbs.

    “the idea reminds me of Alija Izetbegovic’s comment that choosing between Tudjman and Milosevic was like the choice “between leukemia and a brain tumor.”

    Yes, and what was he, Cancer, Parkinsons or Pneumonia?

    Asteri

    02/01/2011 at 19:42

  164. Stephen Schwarz tells me he has been trying without success to post a comments on this thread, but the system isn’t receiving them, although he has come under attack here and should be able to respond. So I’m posting the following comment on his behalf. [Quintin Hoare]

    ‘While I find it distasteful to respond to a site dedicated to defaming Marko Attila Hoare, one of the finest contemporary experts on the wars in the former Yugoslavia, I feel moved to comment on swipes taken at my person. I don’t know how anybody could try to foster a conflict between myself and M.A. Hoare on the matter of Wahhabism and al-Qaida in the Bosnian war. We agree that the so-called mujahidin who went to Bosnia during the war did not affect its outcome, or even that of a single battle, and I am fairly certain that M.A.H. would agree with me that Wahhabism as an issue in Bosnian Islam did not emerge until after the Dayton ceasefire. Al-Qaida was not heard of before Dayton, anywhere except perhaps in Peshawar.

    The Iranians, as M.A.H. has pointed out, did much more, with the knowing assent of Clinton, to assist the Bosnian army than did the Saudis or any other Muslim state influenced by Wahhabism or its variants. Pakistan played no role in helping Bosnia except for a meaningless trip to Sarajevo by some Pakistani politicians. Aside from Iran the two Muslim countries that did the most to help Bosnia were Turkey and Malaysia, with money, not people or weapons. Wahhabi infiltration into Bosnia through the Saudi High Commission for Relief to Bosnia-Hercegovina has been many times documented in many places, including the role of people working in Saudi agencies in Sarajevo in the creation of al-Qaida. But most of this took place after Dayton, and involved a small group. At that time, so-called mujahidin were warned away from the Balkans because of the sudden and determining U.S. role. Instead, they went to the Caucasus.

    As to whether my work is taken seriously by academics, I am not an academic and am not impressed by the record of Western academics on either the Balkans (where tenured Serbophilia is common) or on Islam in general, where accommodation to Wahhabism was for too long taken for granted. All one needs to do to prove these points is to attend meetings of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, in which I have participated although not an academic, and the Middle East Studies Association.

    My book THE TWO FACES OF ISLAM, which exposed Wahhabism to a global public, was published in Bosnian and distributed free in mosques, as well as in Albanian, in Indonesian (with an introduction by former president Abdurrahman Wahid), with an edition pending in Farsi, and is now used in anti-Wahhabi and anti-Deobandi medresas in India as a text. Educated Saudis read English and know my books. My work has had more effect in the Muslim lands than in the West. Low blows at me do not dilute the accuracy of M.A. Hoare’s writing or the judgment of history on Serbian fascist imperialism. The whole world knows what the Serbs did in ex-Yugoslavia, including at Srebrenica, and those who try to argue that obvious fact away by “debunking” the case against Milosevic and his clique are beneath contempt.

    Naser Oric was and is a hero, who in any normal assessment would be put alongside the brave men and women of the anti-Nazi resistance movements as well as those revolutionaries who resisted Stalin. The verdict of history on Belgrade has already been delivered and is now a bit beyond the point of querulous argument. Trying to turn “neocon” into a insult is irrelevant. Most of the original members of the Committee for the Present Danger, the founding neoconservative entity, including Jeane Kirkpatrick and various AFL-CIO leaders, were Democrats.

    Beakerkin seems a nice enough guy but his claims about a woman from the Kosovar Jewish community considering me an eccentric are, as far as I know, unfounded. First, from the 1950s when the Prishtina synagogue and various old Islamic monuments were demolished by the Tito regime until 1999 there was no serious Kosovar Jewish community to speak of. A fake Jewish community was set up in the 1990s by Milosevic as part of the paradigm of attempting to reduce the Albanian majority in Kosovo by establishing numerous new ethnic interest groups. A genuine but small Jewish community was established after the 1999 war with Israeli support, based in the town of Prizren. I described its history in another book of mine, titled SARAJEVO ROSE, published — full disclosure — by the Bosnian Institute established by M.A. Hoare’s father. None of the publications of the Institute has ever been seriously discredited.

    Certainly the few Jews remaining in Kosovo had nothing to fear from the Albanians, who are Catholics and agnostics as well as Muslims.

    “Eccentric” is not an insult when referring to authors who publish books with serious academic and trade publishers as I have. Such criticisms are welcome but it is a plague of the internet that they are so typically, now, anonymous. Anonymous criticism is worth no more than the public reputation of the critic.

    Is M.A. Hoare a serious scholar? Yes. He can and has read the Yugoslav Slavic sources in their original languages. Nobody without such language skills is normally considered a serious scholar of any historical subject.

    Gibbs is flat wrong about moral equivalence between Milosevic and the other leaders in the successor states. I was there and saw and reported in the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE about what happened. Many of my early articles and reports on the collapse of Yugoslavia may be consulted at my website http://www.islamicpluralism.org.

    Slovenian leader Milan Kucan proposed the continuation of Yugoslavia as a loose economic union. Serbia said no and assaulted Slovenia, once the latter declared independence. The Croatian Communist Ante Markovic, who favored preservation of Yugoslavia with wide-ranging economic reforms, was denied his turn as Yugo president — by Serbia. Belgrade seized the foreign currency accounts of every Yugoslav citizen — an act that made war inevitable. I was in Zagreb when it happened. Izetbegovic and the Bosniak leaders did not want a war and tried to negotiate a continuation of Yugoslavia until the Serb fascists ended the debate by crossing the Drina to invade eastern Bosnia, committing massacres and other atrocities, and firing on civilians in Sarajevo. Even then the Bosniaks did not immediately mobilize. Izetbegovic at one point put himself in the hands of the Serb military, with his daughter, and the Communist leader Zlatko Lagumdzija, and had to be rescued by the Serbian but pro-Bosnian military officer Jovan Divjak and the Yugoslav special police officer Dragan Vikic, people and facts known to everyone in Sarajevo. Not the conduct of an aggressive leader.

    People unacquainted with the region seem not to notice that until 1998 — i.e. three years after Dayton — the Kosovar Albanian struggle was nonviolent. Every Kosovar Albanian over the age of 30 knows about nonviolence and even about Rosa Parks. And while the Serbian fascists and their apologists condemned the Slovenes, Croats (and now, the Kosovars) as secessionists, Belgrade said nothing about the independence of Macedonia — because Macedonia was poor and did not threaten Belgrade’s tax income from the better-developed republics, and also because Macedonia was Serbia’s bridge to Greece, a local stand-in, with Romania, for Moscow as a tool of the Orthodox-imperialist conspiracy.

    Better a neocon than a Trotskyist turned Stalinist and Milosevic apologist like Louie Proyect. Trotsky defended the Albanians against Serbian imperialism in 1912 and Lenin hated Russian Orthodox imperialism. But brilliant thinkers of the Proyect school do not care at all about the legacy of Trotsky or Lenin. Trotsky’s dispatches on these realities should make the whole leftist clique of Milosevic revisionists shrink in self-disgust.

    How is Gibbs a victim of McCarthyism? Nobody has said he should be removed from his post, notwithstanding his obviously absurd claims, like the resurrection of the charge that Germany provoked the destruction of Yugoslavia. In reality, Austria was much more involved in the emergence of the successor states and Austrian banks established themselves in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Kosovo quite early. But Gibbs is clearly one of that American kind of academics who depend on secondary sources and their own fantasies to support arguments nobody could take seriously. But to paraphrase Orwell, some things are so ridiculous only a Western academic would believe them.

    Is Proyect now an Islam expert? Berman has written nothing on intervention issues per se in some years.’
    Stephen Schwarz

    quintin hoare

    02/01/2011 at 19:51

  165. Walker was U.S. ambassador to El Salvador in November 1989 when six leading Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her daughter were dragged from their beds and murdered by the Salvadoran Army.

    The killings were carried out by the Atlacatl Battalion, which was recruited, trained, and deployed by the U.S. military, supposedly in order to improve the Salvadoran Army’s human rights performance. The Atlacatl was responsible for the worst atrocities of the entire war.

    Walker’s Cover-Up

    As declassified State Department cables later showed, Walker worked diligently to cover up the real authors of the Jesuit murders, particularly Army Chief of Staff René Emilio Ponce, who was identified in the 1993 United Nations Truth Commission on El Salvador as the senior officer behind the crimes.

    Although journalists suspected Ponce from the first days, Walker suggested the killers were FMLN guerrillas. The suggestion was dismissed as absurd by Jesuits, given the proximity of the murder scene to Salvadoran Armed Forces headquarters, where soldiers would certainly have noticed the shooting.

    When Lucia Barrera de Cerna, a neighbor of the Jesuits and the only eyewitness who dared to come forward, said that she had seen men at the murder scene dressed in camouflage uniforms similar to those of the Salvadoran Army, Walker launched a smear campaign against her, telling journalists that Ms. Cerna had fabricated her story under instructions from a human rights worker. He played a key role in organizing the ordeal in Miami in which she was held incommunicado and terrorized in an effort to get her to recant her story.

    When Walker learned that the Jesuits and the Spanish and French embassies were flying Ms. Cerna and her husband out of El Salvador for safety, he hurried with aides to the airport. He insisted that U.S. officials accompany the Cernas on their flight to Miami, supposedly to ease their way through passport control. After arguments with French diplomats who were providing the plane and seemed to smell a rat, Walker got his Embassy legal officer and an FBI agent aboard the flight.

    Once in Miami, instead of being received by American Jesuits as planned, she and her husband were hustled by U.S. authorities to a hotel where they were held by the FBI for a week of “questioning.”

    Ms. Cerna was subjected to what Jesuit Provincial José María Tojera later called a “cruel interrogation.” San Salvador’s Roman Catholic Archbishop, Arturo Rivera y Damas, called it “aggressive and violent” and “blackmail,” saying her questioners threatened to send Mr. Cerna, or both of them, back to El Salvador if she didn’t change her story and “tell the truth.”

    Faced with the threat to her husband, whom U.S. officials were already accusing of being a member of the FMLN, Ms. Cerna recanted her testimony and said she had heard and seen nothing, and in fact never even got out of bed that night. She returned to her original testimony as soon as she was free of the control of U.S. authorities.

    State Department cables released in 1994 reveal. He was requesting Washington to halt all investigation of the Jesuit killings immediately, and to order the Embassy to do the same.

    “I have reached the conclusion,” he wrote in a cable on the Jesuits’ case, “that the [U.S.] Embassy [in San Salvador] must cease the pursuit of unilateral overt information-gathering or face continued no-win decisions and criticism. I recommend that the Embassy be so instructed and that all further investigative effort be left to the GOES [government of El Salvador]. SECRET.”

    Walker first emerged in the Iran-Contra Scandal as the right-hand man of Oliver North and Elliott Abrams in illegal arms shipments to the Contras out of Ilopango airbase in El Salvador. Walker was responsible for setting up a phony humanitarian operation at an airbase in Ilopango, El Salvador. This shell organization was used as a conduit for arms and supplies to the Contra and cocaine back to the US.

    The same William Walker who ‘uncovered’ Racak, for the benefit of the world press, and later leant on Finnish pathologist Ranta. There is more than enough to make any diligent journalist suspicious about the events at Racak. Paul Lewis is one such journalist. Hoare however accuses him and the Guardian of “atrocity denial” (not missing of course the opportunity to conflate the accusation with an earlier one of “genocide denial”). Malachi, is this the “sound” scholarship a la Hoare that you were referring to? I believe it was you earlier that made note of “…the victims of US imperialism in El Salvador and Guatemala and elsewhere ….”.

    frunobulax

    02/01/2011 at 19:58

  166. Good news as that very few people outside the stalinoid ghetto take the denialist views of Gibbs or the trolls on this site seriously.

    Actually, Noam Chomsky takes them seriously. And they don’t come much more anti-Stalinist than him. Same thing with the New Left Review, which published Peter Gowans analysis that is very close to Gibbs’s. Malachi’s problem is that he is somehow operating under the confusion that he has something to do with Marx or socialism because he believes it to be so. This is a frequent problem on the left with people like Jay Lovestone or Irving Howe defending the war in Vietnam in the name of socialism. That essentially is what the Hoares, Magas, Hitchens, Malachi are all about–a belching up of State Department socialism.

    louisproyect

    02/01/2011 at 20:45

  167. “Yes, and what was he, Cancer, Parkinsons or Pneumonia?”

    Alzheimer’s obviously; he wasn’t fit to command a marching band let alone a country.

    Riley

    02/01/2011 at 23:05

  168. Correction — Stipe Mesic was the Croat denied his turn in the Yugoslav presidency. Ante Markovic served in the post but his reform course was obstructed by the Serbian army.

    Final points — the ideological market for denial of the Serbian imperialist and fascist campaign of attempted genocide is very, very small. Even in Serbia most people are tired of hearing this stuff. Attacking Howe is gratuitous and absurd. The issue of Yugoslavia had nothing to do with “State Department socialism” and everything to do with antifascism in which the U.S. Dept. of State played a negative role until 1995. Czeslaw Milosz and Iosif Brodsky were not serving the U.S. State Dept. when they supported Bosnia against the Serbs.

    Stephen Schwartz

    02/01/2011 at 23:32

  169. “Actually, Noam Chomsky takes them seriously. And they don’t come much more anti-Stalinist than him. ”

    Then why does he support the CPM? The fact that a left wing celebrity supports Bosnian genocide denial does not mean that those fantasies automatically have credibility.

    http://cpmindia.blogspot.com/2008/05/chomskys-hypocricy-over-marxist-terror.html

    “Same thing with the New Left Review”

    So? How does the rambling of an obscure journal top verdicts and investigations which confirm that Srebrenica was indeed genocide? Oh that’s right it doesn’t.

    chroniclinghate

    03/01/2011 at 06:43

  170. @David Gibbs

    You argue that you cannot be a genocide denier since you admit that Serb forces committed atrocities. Your argument fails completely; Armenian genocide deniers admit that the Turkish nationalists killed people, however they downplay the murders, attempt to equalize both sides and deny that the actions of Turkish nationalists constitute genocide, which is almost identical to your take on the Bosnian genocide.

    chroniclinghate

    03/01/2011 at 09:50

  171. “What nonsense. The USA killed millions of Vietnamese civilians in an illegal and immoral war and Hoare goes to work for a think-tank named in his honor. You people have no right to call anybody a genocide denier as long as this skeleton is in your closet. Of course, there is a certain consistency in all this.”

    You are attempting to change the topic using a very poor guilt by association argument; of course this is selective moral purity since you have no qualms proudly identifying as a marxist or praising Mao as the ‘greatest revolutionary’ on your blog. Hypocrisy? Yes.

    “Defense of NATO in the Balkans and defense of the war in Vietnam flow from an imperialist logic.”

    Where did Hoare defend the war in Vietnam? Your blog supports Serbian imperialism and promotes Bosnian genocide denial, so once again hypocrisy and self righteous hypocrisy as that. The marxist whining about imperialism has always struck me as an amusing case of projection.

    “The final chapter of Gibbs’s book is all about the Harry’s Place, Christopher Hitchens phenomenon that includes the double-speak of attacking Gibbs as “genocide denier” while hoisting the Senator from Boeing on your shoulders.”

    Gibbs denied that one of the most documented genocides in history qualifies as genocide, it’s just his opinion versus multiple verdicts and investigations; that is genocide denial which you support since you praised Johnstone and Hermann (a Rwanda genocide denier) on your blog.

    chroniclinghate

    03/01/2011 at 09:53

  172. loisproyect and frunbulax – the punctilious, officious, repetitious, neo apparatchiks in wingless flight, guardians of the agenda not its contents. Tis a sad day to find a person who doesn’t know that they don’t know.

    iko

    03/01/2011 at 13:19

  173. iko, is that a round about way of saying that your are quite content with the veracity of William Walker’s description of the events at Racak?

    frunobulax

    03/01/2011 at 13:23

  174. Malachi, but wait a second. What “US genocide in Vietnam” are you talking about? The intent to destroy, in whole or in part, which national, ethnic, racial or religious group in Vietnam? In such way you can stamp the “genocide” mark on just any war that involved war crimes/crimes against humanity. Example: World War II – “US genocide in Japan, British in Germany”, hundreds of thousands of civilians were very deliberately killed in both cases after all, do you think it was also “genocide”? Or maybe you know about some sikret plan devised by the US government, like to kill-off/deport some/all Asians and claim their land as “actually American”, or because of McNamara’s hatred of all things Buddhist, or something like that?

    Robert

    03/01/2011 at 13:39

  175. “The USA killed millions of Vietnamese civilians”

    Short answer is no.

    The long answer is that even according to the modern Vietnamese official estimate “only” 2 million civilians were killed during the war (as well as over 1.3 million combatants, on both sides). Of which of course not all were killed by the Americans (in case if you didn’t know this too, or would pretend otherwise).

    Robert

    03/01/2011 at 13:55

  176. How can I write about flowers while they are lying, raping and killing?
    How can you follow an apologists of their deeds ?

    Santa

    03/01/2011 at 23:18

  177. Since Modernity is apparently on holiday and not moderating his blog or approving comments by new posters, several people who have attempted to post comments here have not been able to do so.

    The following comment was submitted by Stephen Schwarz:

    ‘While I find it distasteful to respond to a site dedicated to defaming Marko Attila Hoare, one of the finest contemporary experts on the wars in the former Yugoslavia, I feel moved to comment on swipes taken at my person. I don’t know how anybody could try to foster a conflict between myself and M.A. Hoare on the matter of Wahhabism and al-Qaida in the Bosnian war. We agree that the so-called mujahidin who went to Bosnia during the war did not affect its outcome, or even that of a single battle, and I am fairly certain that M.A.H. would agree with me that Wahhabism as an issue in Bosnian Islam did not emerge until after the Dayton ceasefire. Al-Qaida was not heard of before Dayton, anywhere except perhaps in Peshawar.

    The Iranians, as M.A.H. has pointed out, did much more, with the knowing assent of Clinton, to assist the Bosnian army than did the Saudis or any other Muslim state influenced by Wahhabism or its variants. Pakistan played no role in helping Bosnia except for a meaningless trip to Sarajevo by some Pakistani politicians. Aside from Iran the two Muslim countries that did the most to help Bosnia were Turkey and Malaysia, with money, not people or weapons. Wahhabi infiltration into Bosnia through the Saudi High Commission for Relief to Bosnia-Hercegovina has been many times documented in many places, including the role of people working in Saudi agencies in Sarajevo in the creation of al-Qaida. But most of this took place after Dayton, and involved a small group. At that time, so-called mujahidin were warned away from the Balkans because of the sudden and determining U.S. role. Instead, they went to the Caucasus.

    As to whether my work is taken seriously by academics, I am not an academic and am not impressed by the record of Western academics on either the Balkans (where tenured Serbophilia is common) or on Islam in general, where accommodation to Wahhabism was for too long taken for granted. All one needs to do to prove these points is to attend meetings of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies, in which I have participated although not an academic, and the Middle East Studies Association.

    My book THE TWO FACES OF ISLAM, which exposed Wahhabism to a global public, was published in Bosnian and distributed free in mosques, as well as in Albanian, in Indonesian (with an introduction by former president Abdurrahman Wahid), with an edition pending in Farsi, and is now used in anti-Wahhabi and anti-Deobandi medresas in India as a text. Educated Saudis read English and know my books. My work has had more effect in the Muslim lands than in the West. Low blows at me do not dilute the accuracy of M.A. Hoare’s writing or the judgment of history on Serbian fascist imperialism. The whole world knows what the Serbs did in ex-Yugoslavia, including at Srebrenica, and those who try to argue that obvious fact away by “debunking” the case against Milosevic and his clique are beneath contempt.

    Naser Oric was and is a hero, who in any normal assessment would be put alongside the brave men and women of the anti-Nazi resistance movements as well as those revolutionaries who resisted Stalin. The verdict of history on Belgrade has already been delivered and is now a bit beyond the point of querulous argument. Trying to turn “neocon” into a insult is irrelevant. Most of the original members of the Committee for the Present Danger, the founding neoconservative entity, including Jeane Kirkpatrick and various AFL-CIO leaders, were Democrats.

    Beakerkin seems a nice enough guy but his claims about a woman from the Kosovar Jewish community considering me an eccentric are, as far as I know, unfounded. First, from the 1950s when the Prishtina synagogue and various old Islamic monuments were demolished by the Tito regime until 1999 there was no serious Kosovar Jewish community to speak of. A fake Jewish community was set up in the 1990s by Milosevic as part of the paradigm of attempting to reduce the Albanian majority in Kosovo by establishing numerous new ethnic interest groups. A genuine but small Jewish community was established after the 1999 war with Israeli support, based in the town of Prizren. I described its history in another book of mine, titled SARAJEVO ROSE, published — full disclosure — by the Bosnian Institute established by M.A. Hoare’s father. None of the publications of the Institute has ever been seriously discredited.

    Certainly the few Jews remaining in Kosovo had nothing to fear from the Albanians, who are Catholics and agnostics as well as Muslims.

    “Eccentric” is not an insult when referring to authors who publish books with serious academic and trade publishers as I have. Such criticisms are welcome but it is a plague of the internet that they are so typically, now, anonymous. Anonymous criticism is worth no more than the public reputation of the critic.

    Is M.A. Hoare a serious scholar? Yes. He can and has read the Yugoslav Slavic sources in their original languages. Nobody without such language skills is normally considered a serious scholar of any historical subject.

    Gibbs is flat wrong about moral equivalence between Milosevic and the other leaders in the successor states. I was there and saw and reported in the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE about what happened. Many of my early articles and reports on the collapse of Yugoslavia may be consulted at my website http://www.islamicpluralism.org.

    Slovenian leader Milan Kucan proposed the continuation of Yugoslavia as a loose economic union. Serbia said no and assaulted Slovenia, once the latter declared independence. The Croatian Communist Ante Markovic, who favored preservation of Yugoslavia with wide-ranging economic reforms, was denied his turn as Yugo president — by Serbia. Belgrade seized the foreign currency accounts of every Yugoslav citizen — an act that made war inevitable. I was in Zagreb when it happened. Izetbegovic and the Bosniak leaders did not want a war and tried to negotiate a continuation of Yugoslavia until the Serb fascists ended the debate by crossing the Drina to invade eastern Bosnia, committing massacres and other atrocities, and firing on civilians in Sarajevo. Even then the Bosniaks did not immediately mobilize. Izetbegovic at one point put himself in the hands of the Serb military, with his daughter, and the Communist leader Zlatko Lagumdzija, and had to be rescued by the Serbian but pro-Bosnian military officer Jovan Divjak and the Yugoslav special police officer Dragan Vikic, people and facts known to everyone in Sarajevo. Not the conduct of an aggressive leader.

    People unacquainted with the region seem not to notice that until 1998 — i.e. three years after Dayton — the Kosovar Albanian struggle was nonviolent. Every Kosovar Albanian over the age of 30 knows about nonviolence and even about Rosa Parks. And while the Serbian fascists and their apologists condemned the Slovenes, Croats (and now, the Kosovars) as secessionists, Belgrade said nothing about the independence of Macedonia — because Macedonia was poor and did not threaten Belgrade’s tax income from the better-developed republics, and also because Macedonia was Serbia’s bridge to Greece, a local stand-in, with Romania, for Moscow as a tool of the Orthodox-imperialist conspiracy.

    Better a neocon than a Trotskyist turned Stalinist and Milosevic apologist like Louie Proyect. Trotsky defended the Albanians against Serbian imperialism in 1912 and Lenin hated Russian Orthodox imperialism. But brilliant thinkers of the Proyect school do not care at all about the legacy of Trotsky or Lenin. Trotsky’s dispatches on these realities should make the whole leftist clique of Milosevic revisionists shrink in self-disgust.

    How is Gibbs a victim of McCarthyism? Nobody has said he should be removed from his post, notwithstanding his obviously absurd claims, like the resurrection of the charge that Germany provoked the destruction of Yugoslavia. In reality, Austria was much more involved in the emergence of the successor states and Austrian banks established themselves in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Kosovo quite early. But Gibbs is clearly one of that American kind of academics who depend on secondary sources and their own fantasies to support arguments nobody could take seriously. But to paraphrase Orwell, some things are so ridiculous only a Western academic would believe them.

    Is Proyect now an Islam expert? Berman has written nothing on intervention issues per se in some years.

    Stephen Schwarz’

    Marko Attila Hoare

    04/01/2011 at 13:10

  178. Chroniclinghate blog also attempted to post a comment and was unable to do so. He has posted the following comment on his blog:

    ‘“And throughout, the book shows that most of the killing and aggression was undertaken by Serb forces. Hoare’s claims to the contrary are in error.”

    David’s argument is that he cannot be a genocide denier since he admits that Serb forces committed atrocities and it’s heavily flawed. Virtually every genocide denier admits that the side he or she defends killed people; however they attempt to equalize the perpetrators with the victims and deny that the murders constitute genocide, which is Gibbs’ view on the Bosnian genocide. For example Armenian genocide deniers admit that Turkish nationalists killed people; however they attempt to justify it as defense of the Ottoman empire similar to how Milosevic supporters portray Slobo and company as being guilty of nothing but trying to keep Yugoslavia intact.

    Turkish nationalist also claim that the Armenian defenders were “just as bad” as the Turkish nationalists. Erdogan said that Armenians ‘exterminated’ Turks’, which is almost identical to how pro-Serb ideologues present the defenders of Bosnia (for example the fantasies about Nasser Oric killing ‘thousands’). And of course Turkish nationalists also deny that the massacres of Armenians constitute genocide (usually using a ridiculously narrow definition) which is nearly identical to David’s argument. Yet David has the audacity to complain about being attacked! To which I have to say; grow up, receiving criticism is part of adult life and being an writer.

    Chroniclinghate’

    http://chroniclinghate.wordpress.com/2011/01/04/david-gibbs-genocide-denier/

    Marko Attila Hoare

    04/01/2011 at 13:26

  179. Interested readers may wish to read Schwartz’s Serbophobic rant here:

    http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/heroic_serbs_storm_us_embassy/

    And then the response by Jonathan David here:

    http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/kosovo_and_the_myth_of_serbian/

    The Balkans attracts many with varied and interesting backgrounds, Schwartz is clearly a drifter who has found his niche:

    http://theanarchistlibrary.org/HTML/Keith_Sorel__From_Munis_to_Meese__Left_Communism_or_State_Department_Surrealism_.html

    frunobulax

    04/01/2011 at 13:47

  180. More of Schwartz’s (somewhat demented) ranting here in the comments section:

    http://www.limbicnutrition.com/blog/open-serb-hatred-must-be-answered/

    frunobulax

    04/01/2011 at 13:54

  181. Marko Hoare writes ‘XXXX is a Milosevic-supporting ignoramus…’
    But then anyone who differs on any point from Mr ‘a Milosevic-supporting ignoramus ‘ according to Hoare.

    A man with a hammer sees a world full of nails, Buckminster Fuller said.

    James Heartfield

    04/01/2011 at 15:41

  182. I just noticed Stephen Schwartz’s response to mine and Beakerkin’s mention of him, and I thought I better clarify as I seem to have been read as having slurred him by suggesting that him and Marko have differing views. If I was wrong in that, I take it back.

    I also meant to ask as a genuine question what his status was among academics on the topic – not because I think academics are bound to be right, but simply out of interest. I remember reading journalistic things by him in the late 1990s which struck me as impressive, and I was already a fan of his book on the POUM, so I was curious.

    I agree with him that “Better a neocon than a Trotskyist turned Stalinist and Milosevic apologist”. I am shocked that someone who describes themselves as a Marxist can describe themselves explicitly as “pro-Serb”. To be “pro” any particular ethno-national grouping is totally counter to a Marxist worldview.

    BobFromBrockley

    04/01/2011 at 15:45

  183. I have written a reply to frunobulax

    http://chroniclinghate.wordpress.com/2011/01/04/david-gibbs-genocide-denier/

    If frunobulax wants to reply to me, he will have to do it on my blog.

    chroniclinghate

    04/01/2011 at 15:55

  184. I agree with him that “Better a neocon than a Trotskyist turned Stalinist and Milosevic apologist”. I am shocked that someone who describes themselves as a Marxist can describe themselves explicitly as “pro-Serb”.

    There is no equivalence between being a neocon and a Trotskyist. American imperialism has bases everywhere in the world, prosecutes illegal wars that have killed millions of civilians, that tortures and illegally imprisons its adversaries, that keeps nations in poverty, that ignores international law and the human rights appeals of most nations except for Israel. The neocons are an integral part of this system, serving as its mouthpieces in much the same manner as Pravda served Stalin or Goebbels served Hitler. The Henry Jackson Society is a neocon outlet. People who work for such outlets are being paid to promote American imperialism.

    louisproyect

    04/01/2011 at 15:55

  185. For Marko to rely on Stephen Schwartz aka ‘Comrade Sandalio’ aka ‘Suleyman Ahmad al-Kosovi’ is quite frankly, hilarious.

    Schwartz is one of the craziest of the neocon loons that inhabit FrontPage Magazine.

    Check out his rantings here

    http://archive.frontpagemag.com/bioAuthor.aspx?AUTHID=205

    Just one quite to give you a taste, here is Schwatrz celebrating (did he get lessons from Marko?) the Fallujah massacre.

    http://archive.frontpagemag.com/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=10500

    ‘Meanwhile, the body count is encouraging: in Fallujah, 38 Americans and five Iraqi regulars lost; 1,200 terrorists killed. Long live free Fallujah!’

    More on ‘Comrade Sandalio’ here.
    http://www.antiwar.com/justin/j070502.html
    Warning, its very funny.

    Erica Blair

    04/01/2011 at 16:08

  186. Hoare: Virtually every genocide denier admits that the side he or she defends killed people;

    Hoare, I still don’t get the difference between 8000 Muslim men being killed in Srebrenica and millions of Vietnamese civilians being killed by forces backed by Henry Jackson. Would you go to work for the Slobodan Milosevic Society? What sort of moral calculus do you use? I can understand, but not agree with, some NY Review liberal taking up the cause of the KLA or the Muslim forces in the Bosnian civil war. But how does one go to work for an outfit that honors a sleazy warmaker like Henry Jackson?

    Unless, of course, the pay is good…

    louisproyect

    04/01/2011 at 16:20

  187. More on former ‘Comrade Sandalio’

    http://www.infoshop.org/page/Munis-Meese

    ‘On Thursday November 10, 1987, San Francisco’s KRON-TV Channel 4, broadcast a report titled “Private Spies,” on its 6pm “Evening Edition.” The following is from a transcript:

    Sylvia Chase (anchor on set): People and groups who speak out against Reagan administration policies put themselves in jeopardy of surveillance by private intelligence gathering organizations.

    Target 4 has learned it’s a kind of private spying network: conservative groups, with close ties to the White House. Members say they pass on the information that they collect to federal agencies, like the Justice Department. And on occasion to the White House itself…

    …When Congress blocked aid to the Contras, the White House got around the law by turning to a private network to raise the money. That triggered the Iran-Contra scandal…

    …Now, there’s evidence of another private network. This one spies on the President’s political opponents…

    …Here’s how it works. Around the country, people gather information on left-wing activities and funnel it to private conservative groups…like the Council for Inter-American security, the Capital Research Center, the Young America’s Foundation, and the Institute for Contemporary Studies.

    All have close ties to the Reagan Administration.

    Stephen Schwartz (Institute for Contemporary Studies): We’ll be seeing all of the NSC (National Security Council) people, I’m sure. I’ll be seeing all of the NSC people.

    Sylvia Chase: Stephen Schwartz is a member of what he calls the commie-watching network.

    He works at the Institute for Contemporary Studies, a San Francisco think-tank founded by top Reagan aids like Ed Meese.

    Schwartz says he addressed a White House meeting attended by Oliver North and even met former CIA director, William Casey. Schwartz says there are lots of ways to get information.

    Schwartz: When a left-wing group publishes, say a list of its state committee and throws it in the garbage and somebody finds it in the garbage and brings it to me, then I know the names of all those people and sometimes there will be more information, too.

    Chase: What techniques are being used today…going through the garbage. That’s one way.

    Schwartz: Going through garbage.

    Chase: Lifting things off the desk when no one’s looking.

    Schwartz: Now, that’s something which is something that I don’t believe in. But that’s not fair.

    Chase: But you know that it happens?

    Schwartz: Yeah. I do know that it happens.

    Chase: What other techniques would people use?

    Schwartz: Well, if any leftist group has an open office where there are a lot of people around, you know you can walk in and if there’s something lying on a desk, you don’t have to filch it. You might just write down what’s on it…see a list of names or something like that.

    Chase: Are there other people like you around the country keeping track?

    Schwartz: There are people that are collecting information. Yes.

    Chase: And are they able to get it to people in government?

    Schwartz: Yes. But the people in the government are not, frankly, able to do anything more with it than simply collect the information and keep track of the information…’

    …and this is the sort of person Marko ‘Comrade Attila’ Hoare relies on for support. Beyond parody.

    Erica Blair

    04/01/2011 at 17:31

  188. Chroniclinghate has asked me to post the following comment:

    ‘Louis Proyect has posted another crude smear.

    “The Henry Jackson Society is a neocon outlet. People who work for such outlets are being paid to promote American imperialism.”

    Yet Proyect writes for a site that promotes Chinese imperialism! In the link below Louis states that “I consider the Chinese Revolution one of the epochal achievements of humanity in the 20th century despite the fact that it departed from classical Marxist norms.” Mao was responsible for the deaths of at least thirty million people (the lowest estimate). For Louis to attempt to erase the reality of the Bosnian genocide by squealing “Vietnam was worse” while praising the work of psychopath responsible for more deaths than the number of civilians and soldiers killed in Vietnam combined is revolting hypocrisy.

    http://kasamaproject.org/2010/08/30/provoked-by-the-platypus/

    Another article from Kasama Project.

    “When the great revolutionary leader Mao Tsetung died in 1976″

    “Under the leadership of Mao, the masses of people participated in the revolutionary struggle to transform society–to do away with classes, all inequalities and oppression. And during the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution in the 1960s, millions of students, workers, and peasants were mobilized to expose and kick out high-level authorities and party leaders who were trying to take China down the capitalist road.”

    Clearly Louis is no position to lecture anyone about “imperialism” when he supports imperialism and a ‘man’ who caused more misery than anyone involved in the Vietnam war.’

    http://chroniclinghate.wordpress.com/2011/01/04/david-gibbs-genocide-denier/

    Marko Attila Hoare

    04/01/2011 at 17:33

  189. Well, of course, I admit to being completely evil. There is no disputing that. Now if we can only get you off your high horse and admit that you are just as evil, then we would be making progress as the psychoanalysts say. Your problem is that you are like Pecksniff, a totally self-righteous, pompous, hypocritical wanker. You lost your dubious membership in the “decent left” when you became associated with an outfit that promotes the reputation of somebody who would have been prosecuted for war crimes, along with every other crappy bourgeois politician, just like the Nazis at Nuremberg. The problem, of course, is that the USA wins these imperialist wars and is able to define what is “good” and “evil” based on the principle that might makes right. And here you are, a turncoat to the left, pimping for these war criminals. Shame on you.

    louisproyect

    04/01/2011 at 18:38

  190. There is no equivalence between being a neocon and a Trotskyist. American imperialism has bases everywhere in the world, prosecutes illegal wars that have killed millions of civilians, that tortures and illegally imprisons its adversaries, that keeps nations in poverty, that ignores international law and the human rights appeals of most nations except for Israel. The neocons are an integral part of this system, serving as its mouthpieces in much the same manner as Pravda served Stalin or Goebbels served Hitler. The Henry Jackson Society is a neocon outlet. People who work for such outlets are being paid to promote American imperialism.

    The point is not whether being a “neocon” is equivalent to being a Trotskyist. The point is whether being a “neocon” is worse than approving of dictatorship, ethno-nationalism and ethnic cleansing.

    I find, as I and others said before, the bandying about of terms like “neocon” which really mean more or less nothing, to be a totally unhelpful way of forwarding an argument. The logic developed here by Louis, “Erica”, and others seems to be that Harry’s Place and the Henry Jackson Society are “neocon”, therefore Sarah C and Marko AH must be wrong about everything. This logic is obviously absurd.

    They detract from the real substance of the argument which are about what happened in Yugoslavia during the 1990s. Similarly, the tendentious comparison of this conflict to other conflicts on the basis of some absolute moral calculus is an example of whataboutery. I personally think that America acted genocidally in Vietnam, but that does not have any bearing whatsoever on what the Serbian forces did or didn’t do in Srebernica.

    The refusal to engage on that topic, but instead to insist on throwing around ridiculous comparisons to Pravda, Joe McCarthy and Goebells can be taken to indicate rather weak arguments.

    BobFromBrockley

    04/01/2011 at 18:48

  191. The point is whether being a “neocon” is worse than approving of dictatorship, ethno-nationalism and ethnic cleansing.

    Didn’t you read what I wrote?

    I said that people who work for an organization that promotes the reputation of Henry Jackson and that publishes papers defending the US occupation of Iraq have no business castigating anybody for “genocide denial”.

    On the question of Srebrenica, I find it absurd to describe it as “genocide”. It was an atrocity, not much different than any other atrocity of the 20th and 21st centuries. Ethnic cleansing has taken place against Muslims. It has also taken place against Serbs.

    I think it cheapens the language to refer to Srebrenica as “genocide”. There was a genocide of American Indians. Some scholars estimate the pre-Columbian Indian population to have been 54 million. By the end of the 17th century it had been reduced to 8 million. Now that is what I call genocide.

    You Serbophobes can call Srebrenica “genocide” but nobody else outside your own ranks and the usual rogue’s gallery of bourgeois politicians would agree with you.

    louisproyect

    04/01/2011 at 20:45

  192. I had know idea anyone actually regarded Stephen Schwartz as an expert on the Balkans, or anything for that matter, please read this fantasticly stupid piece on Montenegro’s independence from 2006, I must say I would have thought an ‘expert’ would know that Montenegro wasn’t actually part of Serbia before independence.

    http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/012/448mwiem.asp?page=1

    Asteri

    04/01/2011 at 22:14

  193. ‘The logic developed here by Louis, “Erica”, and others seems to be that Harry’s Place and the Henry Jackson Society are “neocon”, therefore Sarah C and Marko AH must be wrong about everything. This logic is obviously absurd.’

    …and this is a ‘Straw Man’ argument.

    Do you deny that Harry’s Place and the Henry Jackson Society are nonconservative operations? I hope not. Their members and supporters may be right about other things, but their support for genocidal American Imperialism makes them fair game for exposure.

    ‘The point is not whether being a “neocon” is equivalent to being a Trotskyist. The point is whether being a “neocon” is worse than approving of dictatorship, ethno-nationalism and ethnic cleansing.’

    Well Marko proves you can be both an ex-Trotskyist neocon and approving of ethno-nationalism and ethnic cleansing.

    Funny how Marko makes ever more desperate calls for ‘moderation’ (i.e censorship) of this discussion as he loses what’s left of his credibility. Stephen Schwartz? Oh dear!

    Erica Blair

    04/01/2011 at 23:34

  194. Thanks to CiF commentator ‘Carnyx’ who summed it up rather well in response to the usual special pleading re the numbers game:

    “Srebrenica became the proof that it was possible to experience genocide in Europe even after the extermination of 6 million Jews. Also, let us remember that genocide is not defined by numbers of people killed, but primarily by the intention to exterminate a certain ethnic group or a nation.”

    Only if that massacre can be demonstrated to have that intention, and how can murdering 8000 men in one town prove an intention to exterminate an entire ethnic or national group? Especially since 30 000 were bussed to safe territory. It’s also quite obvious that the object of the Serb attack on Srebrenica was to gain control of a continuos territory within which they could establish a separate state, in otherwords they weren’t just aiming to kill Bosniaks for the sake of it there was a clear political and military territorial objective.

    Sorry, while Srebrenica was a warcrime and a crime against humanity and I’m glad Serbia has admitted it did not fulfil it’s duty to prevent it, calling it “genocide” and comparing it to the Holocaust and Armenian genocide devalues those events.

    In 1915 there were roughly 2 million Armenians in the Empire, 1 to 1.5 million were murdered, over 50% of them, today there are only 40 000 Armenians in Turkey. The Holocaust exterminated 78% of the Jews in occupied Europe, there were about 9 million Jews in all Europe before the Holocaust, today it’s 1.7 million. Srebrenica saw 8000 murdered in a Bosniak population of 1.9 million, less than half a percent of them, today there are 2.2 million Bosniaks in Bosnia.

    The Hamidian massacres of Armenians in the Ottoman empire (1894-96) are not usually counted as part of the Armenian genocide since it cannot be said that the intention then was to exterminate all Ottoman Armenians rather the 200 000 murdered were victims of a collective punishment aimed at politically suppressing them. Nor is the Adana massacre of 1909 with 30 000 Armenians murdered in one province called “genocide” by itself, the Armenian genocide didn’t start until 1915 that’s when the Ottoman authorities took measures to target all Armenians everywhere within the Empire.

    Lemkin specifically argued that a “substantial part” of a group must be targeted to qualify as “genocide”, a “substantial part” must be a part whose extermination threatens the existence of the whole group, well Srebrenica was captured, 8000 were murdered, and yet Bosniaks do survive as a national group, unlike Armenians and Jews there population has risen. The male population of Srebrenica simply is not big enough to qualify as a substantial part, and this is where the ITCY’s argument about “emblematic” comes in, in otherwords the ITCY knows 8000 in one town just aren’t enough to qualify as a substantial part so instead it’s supposed that the 8000 symbolically represented all Bosniaks, and that’s what the charge of “genocide” rests on, a symbolic genocide rather than an actual one.

    If then Srebrenica Bosniaks were killed for being emblematic, as a symbolic gesture designed to psychologically exterminate all Bosniaks then Israel would also be guilty of “genocide” at Dier Yassin although only 107 villagers were killed, as this event was used to terrorise other Palestinians into flight and resulted in denying them a nationality. I’m no friend of Israel, but I don’t think they have committed genocide yet, massacres and warcrimes yes, ethnic cleansing yes, but not genocide and the Serbs did the same thing.

    The tortured logic of the ITCY in trying to term Srebrenica “genocide” gives credence to Serb nationalist claims that the term is politically motivated and that in turn gives credence to their denials of any wrong doing. Just because many are rightfully disgusted by what the Serbs did in Srebrenica, that disgust does not justify calling it “genocide”, it doesn’t need to be “genocide” to prosecute it’s perpetrators or to condemn it, while calling it “genocide” devalues and belittes the term.

    frunobulax

    04/01/2011 at 23:35

  195. Chroniclinghate has asked me to post the following comment on his behalf:

    ““I said that people who work for an organization that promotes the reputation of Henry Jackson and that publishes papers defending the US occupation of Iraq have no business castigating anybody for “genocide denial”.”

    This from someone who idolizes Mao and writes for a site that supports the occupation of Tibet; the best smear against Marko Proyect can devise is a poorly constructed guilt by association attempt.

    “On the question of Srebrenica, I find it absurd to describe it as “genocide”.

    This is nothing but Proyect’s opinion; why do these people think that their opinion automatically cancels out verdicts, eye witnesses and investigations?

    “It was an atrocity, not much different than any other atrocity of the 20th and 21st centuries.”

    I agree; the 20th century was charaterized by genocide, partly because of the idealogy that Proyect supports.

    “It has also taken place against Serbs.”

    The idea that operation storm was a massive ethnic cleansing is fundamentally absurd.

    “I think it cheapens the language to refer to Srebrenica as “genocide”.

    This is an opinion – not a fact – from someone takes Hermann and Peterson (who also deny the Rwanda genocide) seriously.

    “You Serbophobes can call Srebrenica “genocide” but nobody else outside your own ranks and the usual rogue’s gallery of bourgeois politicians would agree with you.”

    How utterly bizarre; Proyect thinks that court verdicts, investigations and the testimony of survivors is meaningless, no facts, no actual arguments, to Proyect the sky’s color is determined by the latest boring Chomsky article. To Proyect and company you can deny/support the Srebrenica genocide, view Mao as a hero and support the occupation of Tibet, but just don’t speak of neo-Chetniks in such a harsh tone! That’s racism! *Switches sarcasm off.*

    Frunobulax has humiliated himself yet again.

    “Thanks to CiF commentator ‘Carnyx’ who summed it up rather well in response to the usual special pleading re the numbers game:”

    Yes that’s right; Frunobollocks thinks that the word of online troll who uses his own definition of genocide rather than actual definitions tops the word of the ICTY and survivors. If Fruno and Proyect wish to argue further, they are more than welcome to post on my blog.”

    http://chroniclinghate.wordpress.com/2011/01/04/david-gibbs-genocide-denier/

    Marko Attila Hoare

    05/01/2011 at 10:38

  196. 1. Funny how Marko makes ever more desperate calls for ‘moderation’ (i.e censorship) of this discussion as he loses what’s left of his credibility. Stephen Schwartz? Oh dear!

    I seem to have missed Marko’s increasingly desperate calls for moderation and instead noticed him posting material that has been held in a moderation queue. This blog has quite a stringent comments policy, but it is one person’s private blog, not some kind of public forum, and it would not be “censorship” to request visitors to refrain from personal insults. We have been given free rein because we have effectively been in the host’s house while he is away, and we should be respecting that a little more than we have been, as some of the language used on both sides would probably not honour the comments policy here.

    2. Do you deny that Harry’s Place and the Henry Jackson Society are nonconservative operations? I hope not. Their members and supporters may be right about other things, but their support for genocidal American Imperialism makes them fair game for exposure.

    I don’t know what “neoconservative” means, as the term has been so de-valued by those who use it as a meaningless derogatory term. Is Harry’s Place neoconservative? Well, only if anyone who supports the Iraq war counts as neoconservative, as some (not all) of those who post at HP were indeed pro-war. HP is not as left-wing as Louis P, of course, but I don’t think, for example, that it has endorsed Republican or Likud candidates. But calling HP neoconservative, or defending it from that label, is completely and utterly beside the point in a debate about what happened in the Balkans in the 1990s. It subtracts from, rather than adds to, the debate.

    3. Actually, Noam Chomsky takes them seriously. And they don’t come much more anti-Stalinist than him.

    Of course Chomsky espouses an anti-Stalinist theory, but I find him far from anti-Stalinist in practice. His political praxis is pure Second Campism, which the Erica Blairs of this world might approve of but which I believe Eric Blair would have seen right through. Chomsky will accept any crime committed by America and its allies as genocide, but will never accept that label when the crime is committed by a state in the other camp, however brutal. Chomsky’s policy of tendentious comparison, taken up by a number of the commenters here, is designed to minimise, relativise and apologise for every crime committed by the “anti-imperialist” camp and to maximise and exaggerate every crime committed by the Western camp.

    See these comment threads:
    http://js-kit.com/api/static/pop_comments?ref=http://jewssansfrontieres.blogspot.com&path=%2F2580081301876956265

    https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=10131050&postID=1647051012398656961

    https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=10131050&postID=4904085833497636915

    Bob

    05/01/2011 at 11:21

  197. Just re-posting my comment, because it is awaiting moderation due to inclusion of some urls.

    1. Funny how Marko makes ever more desperate calls for ‘moderation’ (i.e censorship) of this discussion as he loses what’s left of his credibility. Stephen Schwartz? Oh dear!

    I seem to have missed Marko’s increasingly desperate calls for moderation and instead noticed him posting material that has been held in a moderation queue. This blog has quite a stringent comments policy, but it is one person’s private blog, not some kind of public forum, and it would not be “censorship” to request visitors to refrain from personal insults. We have been given free rein because we have effectively been in the host’s house while he is away, and we should be respecting that a little more than we have been, as some of the language used on both sides would probably not honour the comments policy here.

    2. Do you deny that Harry’s Place and the Henry Jackson Society are nonconservative operations? I hope not. Their members and supporters may be right about other things, but their support for genocidal American Imperialism makes them fair game for exposure.

    I don’t know what “neoconservative” means, as the term has been so de-valued by those who use it as a meaningless derogatory term. Is Harry’s Place neoconservative? Well, only if anyone who supports the Iraq war counts as neoconservative, as some (not all) of those who post at HP were indeed pro-war. HP is not as left-wing as Louis P, of course, but I don’t think, for example, that it has endorsed Republican or Likud candidates. But calling HP neoconservative, or defending it from that label, is completely and utterly beside the point in a debate about what happened in the Balkans in the 1990s. It subtracts from, rather than adds to, the debate.

    3. Actually, Noam Chomsky takes them seriously. And they don’t come much more anti-Stalinist than him.

    Of course Chomsky espouses an anti-Stalinist theory, but I find him far from anti-Stalinist in practice. His political praxis is pure Second Campism, which the Erica Blairs of this world might approve of but which I believe Eric Blair would have seen right through. Chomsky will accept any crime committed by America and its allies as genocide, but will never accept that label when the crime is committed by a state in the other camp, however brutal. Chomsky’s policy of tendentious comparison, taken up by a number of the commenters here, is designed to minimise, relativise and apologise for every crime committed by the “anti-imperialist” camp and to maximise and exaggerate every crime committed by the Western camp.

    BobFromBrockley

    05/01/2011 at 11:22

  198. Yes that’s right; Frunobollocks thinks that the word of online troll who uses his own definition of genocide rather than actual definitions tops the word of the ICTY and survivors.

    Instead of “the word of online troll”, I’d say rather well put argument regardless of the provenance.

    As for quoting Philip J Cohen, can Dr Hoare authoritatively state that Cohen’s book was not ghost written at the the behest of the Croat government?

    frunobulax

    05/01/2011 at 11:28

  199. Chroniclinghate has asked me to post this comment on his behalf:

    ‘”Instead of “the word of online troll”, I’d say rather well put argument regardless of the provenance.”

    The genocidal nature of the Srebrenica massacre has been established by multiple court verdicts, a wikipedia scholar who doesn’t understand what genocide actually means does not change that.

    “As for quoting Philip J Cohen, can Dr Hoare authoritatively state that Cohen’s book was not ghost written at the the behest of the Croat government?”

    Hoare didn’t quote Cohen; I did (Marko has been nice enough to post my comments for me since the moderator seems to be away) and I quoted an article he wrote not Cohen’s book.’

    Marko Attila Hoare

    05/01/2011 at 14:10

  200. Hoare didn’t quote Cohen; I did (Marko has been nice enough to post my comments for me since the moderator seems to be away) and I quoted an article he wrote not Cohen’s book.’

    Apologies for the confusion. Hoare has enthused about Cohen’s book (a quite gushing review on Amazon) and many of Hoare’s fellow travellers quote endlessly from it. All the same, I’d welcome Dr Hoare’s verdict on the provenance of Cohen’s book.

    frunobulax

    05/01/2011 at 14:32

  201. The genocidal nature of the Srebrenica massacre has been established by multiple court verdicts, a wikipedia scholar who doesn’t understand what genocide actually means does not change that.

    Of course. And these very same courts have seen fit to let Croatian and Muslim war criminals go free. That’s what happens when you are a hegemonic power. You can define who is a war criminal and who is not. You can define what is genocide and what is not. By any standards, the fire-bombing of Dresden was “genocidal” if Srebrenica was genocidal. But because the allies won, no American general or politician faced criminal charges. That is what Hoare is all about essentially. Might makes right.

    louisproyect

    05/01/2011 at 15:13

  202. I don’t know what “neoconservative” means, as the term has been so de-valued by those who use it as a meaningless derogatory term. Is Harry’s Place neoconservative? Well, only if anyone who supports the Iraq war counts as neoconservative, as some (not all) of those who post at HP were indeed pro-war.

    Who cares if Harry’s Place is “neoconservative” or not. The real issue is that it is a mouthpiece for Anglo-American imperialism. Perhaps “Bob from Brockley” does not think that imperialism exists. That is why it is probably a waste of time to engage with him, as I have not.

    louisproyect

    05/01/2011 at 15:15

  203. Editor, please tell me what “Your comment is awaiting moderation,” means? I have sent in the required modernity blog that was requested. Please advise. It is apparent that my comments have not yet reached your readers since there has been no comment even from Mr. Hoare. . What more do I have to do for my comments to be posted?
    Thank you

    doctor13

    05/01/2011 at 15:29

  204. Who cares if Harry’s Place is “neoconservative” or not.

    Indeed. But it seems that a number of Hoare’s detractors and Sarah’s in this thread care passionately, and substitute the allegation that it is for any kind of reasoned argument against their position. That’s all.

    The real issue is that it is a mouthpiece for Anglo-American imperialism. Perhaps “Bob from Brockley” does not think that imperialism exists. That is why it is probably a waste of time to engage with him, as I have not.

    Fair enough. For the record, I think that imperialism does exist, but that the imperialism of 2011 is not the imperialism that Lenin analysed in 1916, or even the imperialism that Fanon, Cabral and others analysed during the period of decolonisation, and I think the tools the unrepentant “anti-imperialists” use to combat it are blunt and outdated. I don’t think that imperialism is the most useful frame for thinking about what happened in the Balkans in the 1990s. (Although I admit I was the first person in this comment thread to introduce it, when I wrote “I find Gibbs’ emphasis on German imperialism convincing.” Something I was probably wrong about.)

    BobFromBrockley

    05/01/2011 at 16:26

  205. Sorry, just to complete my thought, and having read a bit more of Gibbs as a result of this, I might have said that the role of German geopolitical interests have been under-emphasised in the anglophone discourse on this. Gibbs is right to draw attention to this element, but probably does so excessively, while underplaying the differences between the interests within the Western bloc, differences which are papered over by using the overly general term “imperialism”.

    Also, on Harry’s Place, like them, and like Marx, I think that it is perfectly possible that what “imperialists” do for “bad” imperialist motivations can sometimes have “good” effects, and that the NATO involvement in Kosovo, while too little, rather late and ill-conceived, might fall into that category. I argued something like that in a previous comment thread war with Gabriel Ash here: http://js-kit.com/api/static/pop_comments?ref=http://jewssansfrontieres.blogspot.com&path=/2580081301876956265

    It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of explaining why the Western powers did precisely zilch during the years of slaughter 1992-5, but only acted in Kosovo in 1999. It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of reckoning with the importance of preserving multi-ethnic communities in the former Yugoslavia. It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of addressing the lust for killing that afflicted all sides in the conflict at various points, but which afflicted the side designated as “anti-imperialist” in this analysis by far the worst.

    BobFromBrockley

    05/01/2011 at 16:39

  206. (Re-posting my comment because I included an url in it and was thus held in a queue.)

    Just to complete my thought, and having read a bit more of Gibbs as a result of this, I might have said that the role of German geopolitical interests have been under-emphasised in the anglophone discourse on this. Gibbs is right to draw attention to this element, but probably does so excessively, while underplaying the differences between the interests within the Western bloc, differences which are papered over by using the overly general term “imperialism”.

    Also, on Harry’s Place, like them, and like Marx, I think that it is perfectly possible that what “imperialists” do for “bad” imperialist motivations can sometimes have “good” effects, and that the NATO involvement in Kosovo, while too little, rather late and ill-conceived, might fall into that category.

    It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of explaining why the Western powers did precisely zilch during the years of slaughter 1992-5, but only acted in Kosovo in 1999. It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of reckoning with the importance of preserving multi-ethnic communities in the former Yugoslavia. It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of addressing the lust for killing that afflicted all sides in the conflict at various points, but which afflicted the side designated as “anti-imperialist” in this analysis by far the worst.

    BobFromBrockley

    05/01/2011 at 16:40

  207. Mark H wrote: “Why is my comment still awaiting moderation?”

    Cos I was NOT here. As I wrote in the thread, please make an EFFORT…

    modernityblog

    05/01/2011 at 17:53

  208. I am glad to see that Quintin Hoare has joined this debate.

    I would like to take this opportunity to ask him about the libel suit he brought against Alex Callinicos and his publisher: Was this libel suit effective in silencing Callinicos’ criticism of the Balkan writings of yourself or your Bosnian Institute colleagues? Are there any other libel suits that you have brought or threatened against critics; and if so, were these effective in shutting down criticisms?

    You also attach a message which states: “Naser Oric was and is a hero,” similar to the “brave men and women of the anti-Nazi resistance movements as well as those revolutionaries who resisted Stalin.” Are you endorsing this statement?

    David Gibbs

    05/01/2011 at 18:21

  209. Since Gibbs is back, I’m responding to his comment of 22:05, 31/12/10.

    ‘And throughout, the book shows that most of the killing and aggression was undertaken by Serb forces. Hoare’s claims to the contrary are in error.’

    We are talking specifically about the Srebrenica region in the run-up to the massacre. Stop trying to evade the point. Your account of the background to the Srebrenica massacre presents the Muslims/Bosnian army as the ones principally guilty of the atrocities in the region, and of having ‘created the hatred’ there (pp. 153-154).

    You then claim ‘The origin of the Srebrenica massacre lay in a series of Muslim attacks that began in the spring of 1995.’ (p. 160)

    So while you do not deny that the massacre occurred, you a) deny that it was genocide, and b) blame the victims for it.

    This distinguishes your account from the interpretation of Katherine Southwick in the ‘Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal’, whose interpretation you claim you uphold but who, unlike you, doesn’t blame the massacre on the victims.

    To repeat, this is what Southwick says:

    ‘In the spring of 1995, the Bosnian Serbs planned to attack Srebrenica definitively. Radovan Karadzić, President of Republika Srpska, issued a directive to the VRS forces to “complete the physical separation of Srebrenica from Zepa as soon as possible, preventing even communication between individuals in the two enclaves. By planned and well-thought out combat operations, create an unbearable situation of total insecurity with no hope of further survival or life for the inhabitants of Srebrenica.” This was an order to ethnically cleanse Srebrenica. Citing a Prosecution exhibit, the court suggested that the order was a reaction by Karadzić to international pressure to end the war and negotiate a peace agreement: He sought to take the area while he still had time, before an agreement could be reached. In response to the Bosnian Serb capture of an observation post on May 31, 1995, Bosnian Muslim soldiers attacked a Serb village in late June. This helped provide an excuse for the Bosnian Serb takeover of Srebrenica.’

    If you really do agree with Southwick’s interpretation, as you claim, why did you not include this information in your own account of the fall of Srebrenica, instead of blaming the massacre on the victims ?

    Disclaimer: I am not, and have never accused Gibbs of denying Serb atrocities in general. So let’s have no more of that red herring.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    05/01/2011 at 19:08

  210. Marko Attila Hoare

    05/01/2011 at 19:26

  211. It seems to me that an analysis based on “imperialism” has no way of explaining why the Western powers did precisely zilch during the years of slaughter 1992-5, but only acted in Kosovo in 1999.

    I already posted this but apparently the guy who owns this blog (Mr. Modernity) deleted it. Here it goes again, this time only an excerpt:

    NY Times, March 12, 2008
    War Crimes Trial Begins for Croatian General Who Worked With Americans
    By MARLISE SIMONS

    PARIS — A popular Croatian general who led a brutal operation that drove
    the Serbs out of Eastern Croatia near the end of the Balkans war went on
    trial in The Hague on Tuesday for war crimes and crimes against humanity.

    Gen. Ante Gotovina, working closely with American advisers, was the
    commander of a military campaign in the summer of 1995 that put an end
    to the Serbian occupation of Eastern Croatia and forced more than
    150,000 Serbs to flee towns and villages where they had lived for
    generations.

    The four-day operation, in the Krajina region, was a turning point in
    the war, celebrated by Croatia as the heroic recapturing of its homeland
    and mourned by Serbia as the single largest event of “ethnic cleansing”
    of the 1991-1995 wars that broke up Yugoslavia.

    Prosecutors at the war crimes tribunal, while not disputing Croatia’s
    right to retake its land, have accused General Gotovina and his two
    co-defendants, Gens. Ivan Cermak and Mladen Markac, of crimes including
    knowingly shelling civilian targets, allowing their forces to go on
    violent rampages during and after the campaign, terrorizing civilians,
    and looting and burning Serbian homes.

    In his opening statement on Tuesday, the prosecutor, Alan Tieger, said
    more than 350 civilians were killed in August and September 1995, most
    of them not in the heat of the battle, but executed in revenge actions.

    Lawyers familiar with the trial say it may also shed more light on the
    little-known covert American role during that decisive Croatian
    counteroffensive against Serbia.

    full: http://article.gmane.org/gmane.politics.marxism.marxmail/95250/match=croatia

    louisproyect

    05/01/2011 at 19:28

  212. Disclaimer: I am not, and have never accused Gibbs of denying Serb atrocities in general.

    But you do accuse the Guardian of precisely that over Racak. And, now that you’re back with us, I’d very much like to hear your views on the authorship and provenance of Cohen’s book.

    frunobulax

    05/01/2011 at 19:33

  213. I will be responding to Hoare’s wild misrepresentations of my position, both in the above statement and in his numerous other postings, in due course.

    However, I would very much like to hear from Hoare’s father, Quintin Hoare about the libel suit against Callinicos. It is a matter of interest to me. I will also try to contact Callinicos himself to see if he would like to comment on this matter.

    David Gibbs

    05/01/2011 at 19:40

  214. LISTEN up louisproyect, I am exceedingly tolerant, but you try my patience.

    You have your own blog and are more than capable of postings spam, large excerpts, etc there.

    IF you have a particular point, please make it, but don’t clutter up the thread with the equivalent of Castro’s seven-hour speeches, you should know better.

    modernityblog

    05/01/2011 at 19:45

  215. With all due respect to the moderator, who faces a difficult job: The objections to Louis Proyect seem one-sided. Longer postings have been made by the other side — some of which sound like Franjo Tudjman seven hour speeches — but elicit no objection from you.

    David Gibbs

    05/01/2011 at 19:58

  216. Please, spare me all due respect.

    I don’t expect a fellow blogger to clog up a thread, he should know better.

    I don’t expect a fellow blogger to plagiarised a complete post, make errors of attribution, and then ignore any advice to correct it.

    I expect a bit more….it is only a common courtesy.

    And whilst we are at it, I’m sure that readers understand that if you wish for me to be courteous towards them, then it is probably a good idea to make an equal effort towards me, as your host🙂

    I have no objection to people making long, relevant posts, but spam and clutter are the enemy’s of an informed debate, not something I should have to tell academics🙂

    modernityblog

    05/01/2011 at 20:12

  217. As a long-time scholar who has published 3 books on corporate interests in US Foreign policy, in addition to a forthcoming volume with Routledge Press, I have followed with interest the exchanges between David Gibbs and Marko Hoare. I believe that Gibbs has the much stronger argument, and that he is being atacked unfairly and quite selectively by Hoare in a manner that distracts from Gibbs primary points. Gibbs is the first scholar to document quite persuasively the role that US military intervention had in contributing to the escalation of the Bosnian and Kosovo wars. Gibbs does not deny Serbian atrocities, but is much more careful and nuanced to distinguish between the often careless and sloppy figures used by Samantha Power and other supporters of the US military intervention and the more rigorous casualty figures that have been compiled by a wide range of scholarly sources since the US-led occupation. The propaganda war waged by US officials and a wide range of pro-intervention NGOs had a particular set of objectives in mind: the legitimation of NATO and the insertion of the former Yugoslavian republics into a neoliberal transnational agenda that contines to have little or no support today in Bosnia and Kosovo, as a recent cover article in Foreign Affairs acknowledged, noting the lack of legitimacy of Western-installed governmental structures in Bosnia specifically.

    Ronald W. Cox
    Associate Professor and Graduate Director
    Department of Politics and International Relations
    Florida International University

    Dr. Ronald Cox

    05/01/2011 at 20:47

  218. doctor13,

    I have been on holidays, as I wrote earlier on in the thread.

    First time posters are *always* moderated, automatically, after which they can post as they like, but make sure you read and understand my comments policy.

    If you post a lot of links you AUTOMATICALLY go into moderation, an anti-spam measure.

    modernityblog

    05/01/2011 at 21:11

  219. A response to Marko

    Marko wrote

    “One of the clearest pieces of evidence that the Western alliance was not hostile to Karadzic’s Bosnian Serb rebels, however, was the fact that three and a half years of Western intervention in the Bosnian war culminated in a peace settlement that was remarkably favourable to them: not only were they granted a virtual state, through the recognition of their self-proclaimed ‘Republika Srpska’, with its own government, parliament, army, etc., but they were awarded 49% of Bosnia’s territory, despite the fact that Serbs constituted only 31% of Bosnia’s population at the time the war began in 1992. Meanwhile, the supposed ‘imperialist clients’, the Bosniaks or Bosnian Muslims, had their Bosnian republic virtually dissolved and broken into two entities, with the Muslims and Croats, who comprised 69% of Bosnia’s population in 1992, receiving only 51% of the territory.”

    I don’t think we should think of this as support, by 1995 the western powers were desperate to end this embarrassing war for good, the eventual agreement reached in December 1995 was actually an agreement of compromise that left everyone some what dissatisfied. The Muslims had to agree to give up their desire for a centralised Bosnia ruled from Sarajevo the Serbs and Croats had to agree to give up any desire to ceded and had to remain in Bosnia. Marko says that 69% of the population was non Serb, yet the Muslims and Croats were not allies until the shot gun marriage agreement of 1994, even then the Croat Republic of Herceg-Bosna was not disbanded until December 1996 which included most of the Muslim inhabited territory. Post Dayton, the two entities in Bosnia got more or less equal territory we should also note that a lot of Bosnia is sparsely inhabited mountainous territory and it makes no real difference who got it. Finally, while the Serbs gained a large part of eastern Bosnia and a portion of Northern Bosnia, part of what is now Canton 10 and south-east Herzegovina-Neretva Canton, which both have a Serb majority were not included in RS while all the areas which have a Muslim or Croat majority were included in the FBH, for that reason the Serbs lost out.

    please see link below
    http://worldleadersindex.org/Europe/Bosnia.html

    Asteri

    05/01/2011 at 21:22

  220. “And these very same courts have seen fit to let Croatian and Muslim war criminals go free. ”

    Utter nonsense they let Veljko Kadijevic get away despite convicting Racim Delic of a very minor ‘crime’ (failing to prevent a few prisoners from being knocked about).

    “That’s what happens when you are a hegemonic power. You can define who is a war criminal and who is not. You can define what is genocide and what is not.”

    I am afraid this is projection on your part, you seem to think that the opinions of your fellow leftists determine which people are a noble anti-imperialist race and which people are ‘counter-revolutionaries’ who should just lay down and die.

    “By any standards, the fire-bombing of Dresden was “genocidal” if Srebrenica was genocidal.”

    The genocidal intent has been well established by multiple trials; Dresden was an example of a disregard for civilian casualties, no evidence exists that it was part of a plan to anihilate the German people by contrast read this intercepted phone call of Radovan Karadzic.

    “General Krstic: Are you working down there? [executing men and boys]

    Major Obrenovic: Of course we’re working.

    General Krstic: Good.

    Major Obrenovic: We’ve managed to catch a few more, either by gunpoint or in mines.

    General Krstic: Kill them all, God damn it!

    Major Obrenovic: Everything is going according to a plan.

    General Krstic: Single one must not be left alive.

    Major Obrenovic: Everything is going according to a plan. Everything.

    General Krstic: Way to go, chief. The Turks are probably listening to us. Let them listen, the mother-f—–s.”

    “The real issue is that it is a mouthpiece for Anglo-American imperialism.”

    And you write for a mouthpiece for Chinese imperialism, it’s a poor guilt by association argument.

    chroniclinghate

    05/01/2011 at 21:44

  221. IF you have a particular point, please make it, but don’t clutter up the thread with the equivalent of Castro’s seven-hour speeches, you should know better.

    If you are going to delete something I posted, please at least extend the courtesy of telling me that you did it. I wasted 10 minutes trying to find it, only to discover that you deleted it.

    I have been blogging for over 5 years now and have never deleted a legitimate item relevant to a debate taking place. The NY Times article might not have been accessible to people who lack a subscription. I was not sure. In any case, my posts have been brief and to the point here.

    louisproyect

    05/01/2011 at 22:12

  222. General Krstic: Good.

    Major Obrenovic: We’ve managed to catch a few more, either by gunpoint or in mines.

    General Krstic: Kill them all, God damn it!

    Major Obrenovic: Everything is going according to a plan.

    General Krstic: Single one must not be left alive.

    Major Obrenovic: Everything is going according to a plan. Everything.

    General Krstic: Way to go, chief. The Turks are probably listening to us. Let them listen, the mother-f—–s.”

    This strikes me as identical to probably 90 percent of what American commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan say over their walkie-talkies on a regular basis. Of course, nobody–including me–would call American military intervention “genocidal”. That being said, it is only the ineffable Henry Jackson Society website that publishes articles defending this intervention.

    louisproyect

    05/01/2011 at 23:56

  223. “This strikes me as identical to probably 90 percent of what American commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan say over their walkie-talkies on a regular basis.”

    Strawman alert!

    “That being said, it is only the ineffable Henry Jackson Society website that publishes articles defending this intervention.”

    How many times do we have to go over this? You wrote for a site that promotes Chinese imperialism, one article defended the Tiananmen Incident.

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 00:04

  224. In Dr. Robert M. Bowman, (Lt Col, USAF, ret) Chronology of the Conflict in Kosovo, he write of Operation Storm. 14,000 Serbs were murdered during Operation Storm, yet the concerns have always been for the 8,000 Muslim men that were allegedly killed in Srebrenica.
    Col Bowman writes:
    1995 (Aug 4): “Operation Storm.” US/NATO aircraft destroy Serb radar and air defenses, clearing the way for right-wing offensive against the Serb Krajina region of Croatia. US EA6B electronic warfare aircraft jam Serb communications and monitor Serb movements. Hundreds of thousands of Serbs are expelled into Serbia and 14,000 are killed. The attack is led by Brig Gen Agim Ceku, with massive US support. (See NY Times News Service 8/11/95, AP 8/7/95, AP 8/8/95, Manchester Guardian 9/30/95, Boston Globe 10/8/95.) Military Professional Resources, Inc. (MPRI), a Pentagon contractor made up of retired US generals and combat experts, trained the Croats. According to the NY Times 3/21/99, the International War Crimes Tribunal in the Hague called “Operation Storm” the most brutal event in the Balkans since World War II. According to Jane’s Defense Weekly 5/10/99, General Ceku and several other high-ranking Croats took leave from the Croation Army in Feb 99. He is now (according to Jane’s) Commander of the KLA.

    doctor13

    06/01/2011 at 05:33

  225. “If you are going to delete something I posted, please at least extend the courtesy of telling me that you did it.”

    louisproyect, Frankly, I don’t remember, but it’s probable, that was two weeks ago, which is as anyone knows an eternity in politics.

    Under normal circumstances I wouldn’t even dream of doing it , but in your case I’ll make an exception.

    I see no reason to extend you ANY courtesy, count yourself lucky I allow you to post on my blog.

    You have shown me no courtesy when this post was first written by plagiarising in it, failing to attribute it, ignoring my corrections and carrying on regardless.

    So louisproyect, please don’t play the victim here, make a contribution or shut up, don’t whine, and count yourself lucky that you can even post here in the first place. I have zero time for you or your antics.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 05:39

  226. doctor13 wrote, “… the concerns have always been for the 8,000 Muslim men that were allegedly killed in Srebrenica.”

    I was in two minds about letting you post in the first place, but your subsequent comment convinces me that you are a genocide denier.

    So you are not welcome.

    Go away, any future attempt to post here will end up in my spam queue.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 05:53

  227. Bowman is not a credible source; his site also promotes 9/11 conspiracy theories and other nonsense. The 14,000 number appears only on fringe pro-Serb nationalist sites without any real sources, Serb politicians have claimed that 1,200 civilians were killed (which is very doubtful to say the least) so even Serbia’s politicians are not touching that obscure of propaganda. Was operation storm ethnic cleansing? Answer: no.

    “At the [Supreme] Council of Defence [of the Republic of Serb Krajina] the worst possible decision was taken – for the evacuation of the population. It would be shown that that was worse even than the decision to capitulate. The Supreme Council [of Defence of the Republic of Serb Krajina] could have taken one of the following decisions. The first would have been: to have continued with the defence and to have, on the night of 4-5 August [1995] organised its units and prepared the command for the action that needed to be taken in the following days. The basis for such an action would have been the taking of all possible measures and actions forseen by the plan, including action against the Croatian towns. An integral part of this option would have been to turn to UNPROFOR, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the Republika Srpska… [ellipsis in the original] The second decision could have been: to offer a ceasefire and accept negotiations with Croatia, through the mediation of the Security Council. However the negotiations went and however unfavourable they might have been for the RSK [Republic of Serb Krajina], the people would have remained on the terrain and its status would have been incomparably better than going into exile. The third possible decision would have been to have evacuated only that part of the population that was endangered at that time, and those were the parts of northern Dalmatia and the southern part of Lika. Unfortunately, the option that the Supreme Council of Defence took meant the evacuation of the entire civilian population, as well as the police and army, from the entire territory of the western part of the RSK. Those who took such a decision on evacuation must have known well and knew, that they had taken the entire people and army into exile. If this was not realised by certain members of the Supreme Council of Defence, present at the session was the commander of the General Staff of the Serb Army of Krajina, who certainly knew it. It was his obligation and duty to tell members of the council what it meant to take such a decision, to warn them, and that if it was nevertheless carried, to define it as it was envisaged – the evacuation of the people, police and army from the western part of the RSK.”
    -Milisav Sekulic

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 05:58

  228. Bowman also claims that the Racak massacre was “staged” and he also fantasies about Bosnia’s defender’s ‘staging’ massacres in Sarajevo (a lie demolished by the UN). Bowman also wrote that they couldn’t find anyone who witnessed atrocities at Srebrenica; blatant lying. He claims that there were no Serb run concentration camps; a falsehood debunked by the libel suit against living marxism. So no Bowman is not a credible source, what’s next presenting Abe Shinzo as a source on the rape of nanking? Someone once that hatred is “is pure coldness to another’s situation even if they’re being tortured.”

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 06:07

  229. *Shinzō Abe

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 06:09

  230. Can’t say that I have ever heard of Bowman, but forgetting him there is still enough about Racak to make the diligent journalist / historian somewhat suspicious. Shrill cries of “atrocity denial” don’t help.

    He claims that there were no Serb run concentration camps; a falsehood debunked by the libel suit against living marxism. Hmmm…

    In 2003, Kouchner visited Izetbegovic on his death bed, where the following exchange, (as recounted by Kouchner in his Les Guerriers de la Paix, Paris, Grasset, 2004, pp.373-374.) took place in the presence of Richard Holbrooke:

    Kouchner: “You remember President Mitterrand’s visit? In the course of that conversation you spoke of the existence of ‘extermination camps’ in Bosnia. You repeated that in front of the journalists. That provoked considerable emotion throughout the world. François sent me to Omarska and we opened other prisons. They were horrible places, but people were not systematically exterminated. Did you know that?

    Izetbegovic “Yes. I thought that my revelations could precipitate bombings. Yes, I tried, but the assertion was false. There were no extermination camps whatever the horror of those places.”

    That came too late for LM. UK libel laws aren’t necessarily the best test of truth.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 09:29

  231. Now Frunobulax is denying the Racak massacre, as well as the fact of Serb concentration camps. Are there no depths to which this Chetnik won’t sink ?

    Go home, Fruno; your side committed genocide and it lost the wars. You’re the bad guy and the loser.

    Alex Zivanovic

    06/01/2011 at 10:08

  232. Are there no depths to which this Chetnik won’t sink ?

    Well, I’ve never heard Kouchner or Izetbegovic called that before. Thanks for the er. novel contribution.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 10:31

  233. I wonder in which language Izetbegovic spoke with Mitterrand. If he spoke in Bosnian, the word in Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian for concentration camp or extermination camp is simply ‘logor’, from the german. I doubt that Izetbegovic spoke in French and I’m sure Mitterand would never have a conversation in English

    In any case, this is just another example of how Gibbs (who comes up with the same argument in his book) does no more than giving the Marxist dinosaurs’ mumbo-jumbo an academic appearance.

    Interestingly, while Mitterand visited Sarajevo on vidovdan 1992 (28 jun), and that is the date when Kouchner says Izetbegovic warned Mitterand about Serb extermination camps,
    Kouchner only visited the camp of Omarska in August, after the ITN crews and the Guardian journalist Ed Vulliamy had already disclosed its existence to the world. So, although the French government had been warned about the existence of camps, it only acted when the news became public, most likely to appease their public opinion. I was living in France when the war started and remember very well how the public opinion felt outraged and felt there was a moral duty to put an end to the conflict.

    At the moment Kouchner, then a member of the French government, went to Omarska with the Red Cross, the men who had not yet been transferred to the camp of Manjaca had even got beds!!! after having slept on the concrete floor since they had been arrested. beds! How moving! Maybe Omarska was just a summer holiday camp !!!

    Clearly Kouchner could not have had a clear notion of how bad was Omarska. In any case, Kouchner never denied that Omarska was a concentration camp even tough he denied that it was an extermination camp.

    Independently of what was reported at the time by those who had access to the camp, the judicial investigation about Omarska has uncovered overwhelming evidence about the nature of Omarska, not only at the UK libel case of ITN against Living Marxism, but also on the ICTY and on war-crimes trials in Bosnia. The prisoners there were subjected to systematic abuse, regularly beaten, many of them beaten to death, had only one meal a day which they had only a few seconds to swallow, did not have access to clean water, did not have any kind of sanitation, were forced to spend long hours under the sun, or stuffed in incredibly hot hangars, many were executed, and women, who during the day were used as slave work at the canteen were regularly raped at night.

    Although the life conditions improved after the camp started to be dismantled, torture and executions continued until the very last day. The remaining prisoners were sent to Manjaca, another camp, and released only in November 1992 on the condition that they would be exiled in third countries.

    Sarah Correia

    06/01/2011 at 11:19

  234. Sarah, the notorious photos were, in the UK, accompanied with the bold headline “Belsen ’92”. Izetbegovic knew exactly what he was doing encouraging such perceptions. Kouchner, although no Serbophile by any stretch of the imagination, probably wanted to set the record straight on that on. To paraphrase Izetbegovic, whatever the horror of those places they weren’t Belsen even though that is precisely how they were depicted in the British press.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 12:03

  235. Of course, when Kouchner, in his memoirs, recalls his conversation with an already dead Izetbegovic who isn’t there to confirm or deny whether the account is accurate, then the likes of Frunobulax will assume every detail is gospel truth.

    But when Warren Zimmermann, in his memoirs, states unambiguously that he urged Izetbegovic to abide by the Lisbon agreement, then the likes of Frunobulax will assume it is all lies.

    The concept of weighing up the value of historical evidence and judging it critically, which some of us learned in A Level History, is simply absent with these people. As is the concept of consistency in the rules by which evidence is used.

    I promised I wouldn’t feed the trolls, but I mention it because Gibbs is guilty of precisely this double standard in his respective treatment of Kouchner and Zimmermann. And it’s a double standard in the use of evidence that recurs throughout his book.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 12:08

  236. I don’t want to leave the smear that Stjepan Mesic was an ‘Ustasha’ unanswered either.

    ‘Erica Blair’/Resistor’s quote: ‘Mesic said Croatians had scored two historic victories — one when the pro-Nazi Ustasha state was founded in 1941 and the other when anti-fascists won at the end of World War II.’

    Since Mesic described the victory of the anti-fascists at the end of WW2 as a ‘historic victory for Croatia’, he cannot be accused of being an Ustasha or fascist – even at the time the speech was made. His statement reflected the dominant ideology among mainstream Croat nationalism in 1991, which favoured ‘reconciliation’ between the two former sides in the Croatian civil war of the 1940s – the fascists and the anti-fascists – in the name of national unity.

    I agree that it was a reprehensible thing to say, but Mesic within a few years broke with Tudjman’s brand of national chauvinism and became its most determined opponent, so I judge him by his later positive record. Just as I judge another reformed nationalist and martyr for democracy – Serbia’s Zoran Djindjic.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 12:21

  237. Since we have Hoare on the debate again, I wonder if he could mention to his father Quintin Hoare that I would like to know about his libel suit against Alex Callinicos, as noted in previous posts.

    While you are at it, you might also ask your mother Branka Magas about this, since she was also a party to the suit.

    Hopefully, Callinicos himself will be available to comment as well. We will see.

    David Gibbs

    06/01/2011 at 12:28

  238. Mod, if you’re going to ban the deniers from commenting here, you pretty much have to ban the whole crowd of Gibbs’s supporters. This is what Gibbs’s self-declared ‘old friend’ Louis Proyect said above:

    ‘You Serbophobes can call Srebrenica “genocide” but nobody else outside your own ranks and the usual rogue’s gallery of bourgeois politicians would agree with you.’

    That is genocide-denial, and it is what Gibbs himself said, only put slightly more strongly.

    Then you have Frunobulax denying the Racak massacre and the existence of Serb concentration-camps in Bosnia, and Blair/Resistor denying that Serbia attacked Bosnia in 1992. These people’s whole agenda is to deny the crimes of Milosevic and Karadzic. And when they can’t deny them, they minimise them. Or they blame the victims.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 12:29

  239. Perhaps Marko Hoare did not read my last post, so I will simply quote it:

    “Since we have Hoare on the debate again, I wonder if he could mention to his father Quintin Hoare that I would like to know about his libel suit against Alex Callinicos, as noted in previous posts.

    While you are at it, you might also ask your mother Branka Magas about this, since she was also a party to the suit.

    Hopefully, Callinicos himself will be available to comment as well. We will see.”

    David Gibbs

    06/01/2011 at 12:45

  240. Another fact that makes this a highly distasteful discussion, is the degree of personal smearing and ad hominem attacks for which these people go in. You have Frunobulax, on an earlier thread, making racist comments about Serbian human-rights activist Sonja Biserko, whom he attacked on the basis of her ethnic background, and smeared also her family members on the basis of rumours he picked up on internet chat rooms. Then he smeared me, for supposedly benefiting in my career from my political views. Then he smeared Philip Cohen (also not present and able to defend himself), claiming his book was ‘ghost-written’ by the Croatian government.

    Then there is Blair/Resistor, who smeared Stephen Schwarz – who wasn’t present or able to post to defend himself, as ‘the craziest of the neocon loons’. He smeared me as having ‘celebrated the Fallujah massacre’ – God knows where he got that idea from. He has smeared democratic, anti-nationalist Croatian politicians as being ‘murderers’ and ‘war criminals’, though providing not a shred of information to back it up.

    This is an extremely nasty clique of individuals who abuse their anonymity to crawl all over the internet smearing and denigrating non-anonymous individuals, in the service of their genocide-denialist agenda.

    While I would not automatically equate Gibbs with his troll supporters, he also dragged the discussion down right from the start, by bringing up my parents and their libel case against the SWP, which had no relevance to the discussion.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 12:51

  241. “Mod, if you’re going to ban the deniers from commenting here, you pretty much have to ban the whole crowd of Gibbs’s supporters. This is what Gibbs’s self-declared ‘old friend’ Louis Proyect said above”

    Marko,

    Sorry, I haven’t followed the discussion with any degree of attention, but “doctor13’s” comment stood out, that’s why he’s no longer here.

    Equally, one of Louis Proyect’s earlier ones struck me as both distasteful and intellectually egregious:

    “Of course. And these very same courts have seen fit to let Croatian and Muslim war criminals go free. That’s what happens when you are a hegemonic power. You can define who is a war criminal and who is not. You can define what is genocide and what is not. By any standards, the fire-bombing of Dresden was “genocidal” if Srebrenica was genocidal. But because the allies won, no American general or politician faced criminal charges. That is what Hoare is all about essentially. Might makes right.”

    I shall, at a later stage, be addressing these issues, once my mind is a bit clearer.

    Yes, I did notice Professor Gibbs’ attempt to drag me the discussion into family matters, which is pretty low.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 13:10

  242. Erica Blair,

    I am going to ask you a few direct questions and I would like direct answers:

    1. Do you believe that killings occurred at Srebrenica in July 1995?

    2. Do you believe that genocide was committed at Srebrenica?

    And if not, why not?

    Please think carefully on those points, don’t nit-pick and please address the main issues.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 13:28

  243. “Bergen-Belsen, on the other hand, was a relatively light-regime German concentration camp, better than most (all?) of the other major camps.”

    Robert, WTF are you on about?

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 13:30

  244. You have Frunobulax, on an earlier thread, making racist comments about Serbian human-rights activist Sonja Biserko, whom he attacked on the basis of her ethnic background, and smeared also her family members on the basis of rumours he picked up on internet chat rooms. Then he smeared me, for supposedly benefiting in my career from my political views. Then he smeared Philip Cohen (also not present and able to defend himself), claiming his book was ‘ghost-written’ by the Croatian government.

    Nothing racist was said about Biserko. I merely pointed out the incongruity of your description of her as a ‘Serbian patriot’ – a view that would be shared by over seven million Serbs. As for the “rumours he picked up on internet chat rooms” (i.e. that her brother died fighting against Serbs on the Croat side) they are simply matters of fact. Shooting the messenger?

    It can’t have hurt being championed by a bunch of fellow-Eustonite celebrity hacks. Crikey — is pointing that out a “smear”?

    For the supposed writer of a “seminal” book on Serbia, Philip Cohen has been surprisingly absent from virtually all forums, academic and otherwise. By “smear” I take that you are convinced that ‘his’ book was not ghost written. However, your seeming reluctance to conclusively state that Cohen is the true author does leave my wondering if you know what many suspect. I guess it might seem a bit dodgy if an academic had gushingly enthused over a book that turned out to have been ghost written at the behest of the Croat government. We do know that the Croat government has been busy in that department:

    http://www.joetrip.com/projects/89-balkanized-at-sunrise

    Dr Hoare, for someone who dishes it out very liberally you have a surprisingly thin skin.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 13:33

  245. Robert, WTF are you on about?
    Quite. Also, I suspect the tabloid editors chose Belsen because they couldn’t spell Auschwitz. That and the shorter word allowed for a larger font. I don’t believe that the relative ‘comfort’ of the various camps would have been much of a consideration.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 13:39

  246. The moderator has dispensed with any pretense of even handedness: “Yes, I did notice Professor Gibbs’ attempt to drag me the discussion into family matters, which is pretty low.”

    No, this will not wash. The parents’ libel suit against Alex Callinicos is very relevant to this debate. Let me emphasize that throughout this entire debate, I have been consulting with an attorney, who has assured me that I have a great deal to worry about, given the nature of UK libel laws and also the history of the Hoare/Magas family’s past response to criticisms. I have accordingly been very careful in my postings, reading several of them word for word to my attorney friend.

    I am doing this defensively, since do not wish to end up like Alex Callinicos — whose criticisms of the Bosnian Institute director appears to have been silenced. The bottom line is that the Bosnian Institute crowd plays hard ball — as we Americans like to say — and people who debate with them have a right to know this.

    Personally, I do not believe in libel law, which is an extended impediment to free speech. This seems especially true of UK libel law. It would seem, however, that the Bosnian Institute Director, Quintin Hoare does not feel the same way.

    If it were only a question of what Marko Hoare’s parents did, I would not mention it. However, Marko Hoare has long been affiliated with the Bosnian Institute, which Quintin Hoare directs, and so the matter is very relevant to this debate. Branka Magas is also affiliated with the Institute, hence my reference to her. And once again, the attorney I am speaking with assures me that I should be very concerned about this matter.

    I want to reemphasize the biased manner in which the moderator is acting here. Marko Hoare attached and seemed to endorse a posting from Daniel Toljaga which stated: “Prof. Gibbs… has made a deliberate misinterpretation of facts.” It also noted “Gibbs’ pernicious denial of genocide.” Similar statements have appeared repeatedly, with no objection from the moderator.

    David Gibbs

    06/01/2011 at 13:44

  247. It seems that I should have been a bit more careful in letting through some of these first-time posters, readers please accept my apologies.

    I shall try to be more diligent in the future now that I’m back from my holiday.

    If you spot something please let me know.

    Again, I would recommend that readers make an effort to familiarise themselves with the comments policy of this blog.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 13:49

  248. While I would not automatically equate Gibbs with his troll supporters, he also dragged the discussion down right from the start, by bringing up my parents and their libel case against the SWP, which had no relevance to the discussion.

    Given that the English libel laws are biased in favour of the plaintiff, I’d be a little wary of anyone who had previous form – albeit via a close family connection. I’m still cheering that the British Chiropractic Association lost their case against Simon Singh (but you could see that he was terrified right up until the verdict).

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 13:52

  249. Professor Gibbs,

    I have been more than generous to you and your supporters.

    In return I have only received aggravation, incomprehension and e-mails which seem to have ignored my previous explanations, as to how things work around here.

    Naturally, I am a little aggrieved, but given the circumstances I have been reasonably evenhanded.

    You need to consider that someone’s blog is the virtual equivalent of their living-room, you are guests here, please try to act with the common courtesy that is expected of guests.

    That’s all I ask.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 13:58

  250. Throughout this debate Hoare has used all manner of abuse against people who disagree with his views, calling them in one posting “Croatiphobic racist scum” and “pro-Milosevic trolls.” He states this or similar things in post after post — with no objection from the moderator.

    David Gibbs

    06/01/2011 at 14:11

  251. “with no objection from the moderator.”

    Professor Gibbs,

    Might I suggest you ask your lawyer, why this might be the case ?

    I would hope that he or she has better reading skills, the reason I have made no objection on this topics should be obvious to anyone with the capacity to understand the word: VACATION.

    So the reason I have not objected, is that I have not READ the thread with any discernment, which I mentioned previously, on numerous occasions.

    Plus the fact I don’t believe in political censorship, if people wish to throw around insults that is their choice.

    If you and your lawyer take the trouble to read the comments here over the past year you will see numerous occasions of when I’ve been insulted on my own blog, the person concerned was not banned or such like.

    If you would like me to ban people please let me know, but surely that goes against the spirit of the First Amendment? (sarcasm).

    Again, I haven’t followed the debate with much attention, because I couldn’t I was on holiday, I was away, I wasn’t here, with two exceptions I didn’t pay any attention to my blog at all for 14 wonderful days.

    On the two occasions that I did managed to find a PC and login to the blog, I did so as a courtesy to yourself.

    Once more, I object as a moderator to things that go against my comments policy WHEN I see them, other than that, people are largely left in their own devices.

    I hope that collectively both you and your lawyer can understand these rather simple points, they are fairly common to most blogs, people don’t tend to maintain them when they’re away and they expect posters to carry on regardless and not whine.

    Please do let me know if my comments are ambiguous or not sufficiently clear.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 14:28

  252. For the record, Stephen Schwartz is a great scholar and internationally renowned expert on Islam. Smears against him by anonymous posters should be treated with the contempt they deserve.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 14:46

  253. To the moderator: Your call for “common courtesy” is being enforced in only one direction. Your having been out of town seems a poor excuse for Hoare’s extended lack of courtesy throughout his entire debate; and for your failure throughout this debate to comment on Hoare’s lack of common courtesy.

    My conversations with an attorney seem a perfectly reasonable defensive response, given the precedent of Alex Callinicos. And all of this is very relevant to this debate.

    David Gibbs

    06/01/2011 at 14:56

  254. Mr Gibbs, although you began this discussion by describing me as ‘Joe McCarthy’, as ‘Thought Police’ and as ‘neocon’, and although you have repeatedly attempted to drag my parents into this discussion, even though they have nothing to do with it, I have been courteous to you throughout. Perhaps more so than you deserve.

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 15:16

  255. What kind of “policy” is it to delete a NY Times article that documents American military support of a Croatian offensive against the Serbs in a war crimes tribunal? I feel like I have fallen down the rabbit hole. Which way is the tea party?

    louisproyect

    06/01/2011 at 15:25

  256. “Your having been out of town seems a poor excuse ”

    Professor Gibbs,

    Facts are facts, you might not like them but they are facts,

    And when someone is on vacation, on holiday, removed from technology, blissfully unaware of its existence then naturally any reasonable person would understand that.

    But for your and Louis Proyect’s benefit I will repost my comments policy, which clearly many people here couldn’t find or understand.

    “The comments policy on this blog is fairly simple, if you are a racist, a racialist, one of their mates, or someone who writes like them, then you are not welcome here.

    This blog implements a No Platform for Fascists policy.

    So if you are hung up about the existence of Jews, Muslims, the Roma, immigrants, “foreigners”, the French, the Irish, etc and feel the need to express your petty hatreds and xenophobia, do it elsewhere.

    If you are a EDL supporter, a mindless neo-Nazi, an Aryan Nation creep, a White Power freak, a BNPer or an apologist for David Duke’s vile views then best go somewhere else, I don’t publish such filth.

    If you feel that the English Defence League have a point then best leave now, I don’t like excusers or apologists for neo-fascists.

    Alternatively, if you think Mossad/Israelis/Zionists/Jews, etc did 9/11 please sling your hook.

    Also, if you think that a Zionist/Jewish Lobby runs America or most of the world then please get lost, I am not interested in conspiracy theories.

    On top of all that, if you feel it is acceptable for the disabled to be attacked, manhandled, thrown about or discriminated against, then honestly I am not interested in your views.

    If you feel the need to post large reams of guff, spam or irrelevancies please go else where. I have a low tolerance for diatribes.

    If you are an ingrained Genocide denier, etc leave now and never darken my virtual doorstep again.

    For American readers, this blog does not implement political censorship.

    I welcome you expressing your opinions, but I just don’t like fascists or their buddies, and this blog is not covered by the First Amendment.

    The blog owner reserves the right to determine what comments are fit and proper for his blog.

    This is the older version of the comments policy, see the updates.

    Apart from all of that enjoy! “

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 15:34

  257. This map http://www.rastko.rs/istorija/srbi-balkan/img/bosnia-karta2b.jpg taken from the 1991 BiH census shows that the Serbs really did live in aound 50% of the land of Bosnia, if not more.

    Hoare, towards the end of his latest blog posting:

    “Furthermore, according to a book published by the Republican Office of Statistics of the Socialist Republic of Bosnia-Hercegovina in 1976, the majority of the rural population of Bosnia-Hercegovina at the time was non-Serb. Specifically, in 1971, the village population of Bosnia-Hercegovina was 45.5% Serb and 53.7% Muslim and Croat (Ejub Sijercic, Migracije stanovnistva Bosne i Hercegovine, Republicki zavod za statistiku SRBiH, Sarajevo, 1976, p. 52).”

    It would be interesting to know how this source defines what is rural population and what proportion of BiH’s population is urban/rural.

    Living in a village doesn’t not necessarily mean you are a farmer or own a large amount of agricultural land.

    PJD

    06/01/2011 at 15:39

  258. To the moderator: You are not on vacation anymore. Your interventions are entirely asymmetrical, directed only against one side. Your recent posting of your policy to me is the latest iteration of this asymmetry.

    Your call for “common courtesy” has not been applied against the wide range of abuse by Hoare and his supporters throughout the debate.

    David Gibbs

    06/01/2011 at 16:29

  259. For the record, Stephen Schwartz is a great scholar and internationally renowned expert on Islam.

    I suggest we take the “great scholar” at his own word and see the comments he has posted here:

    http://www.limbicnutrition.com/blog/open-serb-hatred-must-be-answered/

    A taster: “Then you should go to Serbia and live with the pigs you love so much.”

    I did hear a report of Schwartz’s performance at the Bosnian Institute a while back. That particular attendee was shocked at the racist, bigoted diatribe which gushed from Schwartz (who, I’m told, seemed very pleased to be amongst such like-minded people). Perhaps an audio recording exists and could be posted?

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 16:44

  260. “Your call for “common courtesy” has not been applied against the wide range of abuse by Hoare and his supporters throughout the debate.”

    Professor Gibbs,

    I will reiterate this point, just got back, I am doing many things all at once, and whilst this particular post may be critical to you it is rather incidental to my existence, my real life existence.

    Thus I’m not paying it much attention, other than when I receive an e-mail telling me about the comments.

    However, as you seem to wish to take offense and misread everything I written I’m not sure that you’ll understand that.

    As I have stated previously, “I haven’t followed the discussion with any degree of attention, “

    That’s it, either understand and engage with what I’m saying or don’t, your choice.

    modernityblog

    06/01/2011 at 16:49

  261. To catch up.

    1. Do you believe that killings occurred at Srebrenica in July 1995?
    Yes, and more than that, they constituted war crimes.
    2. Do you believe that genocide was committed at Srebrenica?
    Only if you redefine the term genocide to dilute its meaning. ‘Genocide is the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group’. I think it should be reserved to describe actions such as the Nazi attempts to destroy the Jewish and Roma peoples.

    Marko claims, ‘For the record, Stephen Schwartz is a great scholar and internationally renowned expert on Islam.’ (and it was Schwarz I said who applauded the assault on Fallujah, please read more carefully)

    1, What are Stephen Schwartz’s (aka ‘Comrade Sandalio’ aka ‘Suleyman Ahmad al-Kosovi’ etc.) academic qualifications?

    2. What sort of ‘internationally renowned expert on Islam’ would claim that Hezbollah are a ‘Wahhabized fringe group’.

    http://old.nationalreview.com/comment/comment-schwartz113001.shtml

    Marko’s defence of the ludicrous and internationally mocked Stephen Schwartz is understandable since the Bosnian Institute has published and promoted one of Schwartz’s books.

    As for, ‘Mesic within a few years broke with Tudjman’s brand of national chauvinism and became its most determined opponent.’ What was he before that, if not an apologist for the Ustasha and an opportunist after?

    Erica Blair

    06/01/2011 at 17:26

  262. Self correction: the above map is from the 1981 and not 1991 census.

    PJD

    06/01/2011 at 17:33

  263. In response to PJD’s map, linked to above, see the following article:

    http://srebrenica-genocide.blogspot.com/2010/03/karadzic-uses-misleading-ethnic-map-of.html

    Marko Attila Hoare

    06/01/2011 at 17:48

  264. Could Marko answer some questions?

    Erica Blair

    06/01/2011 at 18:07

  265. Schwartz the ‘scholar’ doesn’t know that Montenegro wasn’t part of Serbia before 2006, a GCSE student would know that, he calls Serbia “Mafia state” and a “swamp” and continues…..

    “But Montenegrin president Vujan ovic will hold the new country’s first general election on September 10. So far, there is every indication that new borders, a new flag (red with a black eagle resembling that of Albania), and a new, clean ballot will lift Montenegro out of the black hole into which it was dragged by Serbia, and in which Belgrade seems stuck for at least another generation.”

    I find it astonishing that a serious scholar actually believes this about these three state, lets go over a few facts, Schwartz’s beloved “Kosova” is de jure run by a Mafioso with links to drug smuggling, sex trafficking and organ harvesting its Prime Minister has now been implicated it that. Montenegro’s former leader is a political chameleon who has changed his spots so often one can barely keep up, he was a wanted criminal by the Italian authorities for for his links to organised crime, and ‘Macedonia’ has been declared a “flawed democracy” and has been condemned by the European Court of Human rights and Amnesty International for ethnic and religious persecution of its own citizens, after the KLA led an armed insurgency for 2 years, so much for trouble with orthodox Christians. Whatever problems Serbia has with gangsters and corruption its like Switzerland compared to that bunch.

    Asteri

    06/01/2011 at 18:28

  266. The SGB article states:

    “Bosnia has never been structured according to the “settlements”, but according to the municipalities.”

    But if the census data was collected at settlement level then creating a map from this data can hardly be described as “extremely biased”.

    PJD

    06/01/2011 at 18:48

  267. “Schwartz’s beloved “Kosova” is de jure run by a Mafioso with links to drug smuggling, sex trafficking and organ harvesting its Prime Minister has now been implicated it that. ”

    1. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime concludes that Kosovo supplies 10-20% of heroin and that the drug trade has declined significantly. Asteri argues that Serbia doesn’t have a problem with organized crime, this is absurd considering how Zoran Djindjic was killed. Serbophile racists exaggerate Albanian involvement in crime while ignoring Serbian organized crime, just as white supremacists in the US hype African-American involvement in crime while ignoring White criminals.

    http://www.unodc.org/documents/data-and-analysis/Balkan_study.pdf

    2. Three investigations failed to find any evidence to support the organ trafficking myth yet that hasn’t prevented lunatics such as Julia Gorin from whining about it.

    3. Considering that Serbia has a massive problem with human trafficking and organized crime singling out Kosovo as a ‘mafia’ state is a tad hypocritical. Serbia is a ranked as a tier 2 and ” does not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking” clearly Human trafficking is a problem for Eastern Europe as a whole not merely Kosovo.

    http://www.state.gov/g/tip/rls/tiprpt/2008/105389.htm

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 22:51

  268. “Shrill cries of “atrocity denial” don’t help.”

    Of course people like are the very picture of dignity what with cries of “serbophobia.” *Switches sarcasm off.*

    “That came too late for LM. UK libel laws aren’t necessarily the best test of truth.”

    That’s the best you can do? Fiction about a death bed confession? Are you planning to hop off the fail boat anytime soon?

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:00

  269. Dr Hoare is very quiet regarding the provenance of Cohen’s book. Is it possible that the good doctor was ‘Balkanized’ over this one? Hey, if the Croatian government can hire the author of “The Official Alien Abductee’s Handbook” to pen a state-sanctioned biography of Tudjman for US consumption to “keep him out of the Hague”, why not a dermatologist (dentist, whatever) to Nazi-fy the Serbs?

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 23:01

  270. Fiction about a death bed confession?
    Please, take it up with that well-known Serbophile Bernard Kouchner. Perhaps you could sue him.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 23:05

  271. “Please, take it up with that well-known Serbophile Bernard Kouchner. Perhaps you could sue him.”

    Ah I see you’ve moved on from lying to trying to sound like a Bond villain.

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:11

  272. Ah, we meet again Mr/Ms chroniclinghate (is that Blofeld enough for you?).

    Er, where’s the “lying”?

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 23:15

  273. Where haven’t you lied?

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:16

  274. “I think it should be reserved to describe actions such as the Nazi attempts to destroy the Jewish and Roma peoples.”

    That is your baseless and irrelevant opinion; three generations of men (a recent mass grave has also revealed that women were killed at Srebrenica) were killed for their ethnic identity after the Serb forces shelled Srebrenica with the intent of killing as many civilians as possible, multiple courts have concluded that it was genocide.

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:21

  275. Where haven’t you lied?
    Oh dear me, we fell out of the “fail boat” quite some time ago, didn’t we? I never realised that it was actually possible to type with a damp squib.

    0/10 for showing no effort whatsoever.

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 23:22

  276. “Oh dear me, we fell out of the “fail boat” quite some time ago, didn’t we? I never realised that it was actually possible to type with a damp squib.

    0/10 for showing no effort whatsoever.”

    Oh no! A racist troll (who is at this moment most likely giggling hysterically at his or her imagined ‘wit’ and wishing she/he made enough money at the local burger joint to afford a smoking jacket) doesn’t think I tried hard enough!

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:28

  277. “They stripped all the male Muslim prisoners, military and civilian, elderly and young, of their personal belongings and identification, and deliberately and methodically killed them solely on the basis of their identity.”
    – Theodor Meron

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:32

  278. chroniclinghate seems to have Hoare’s proclivity for name calling. Please identify a single lie or racist comment of mine either here or elsewhere.

    By the way, judging by the 2008 RAE, if I’m in a “local burger joint” then Dr Hoare is in an even more downmarket KFC (but you’ll have to take my word for that, I’m afraid).

    frunobulax

    06/01/2011 at 23:37

  279. Perhaps Marko could explain Mesic’s motivations here?

    http://english.blic.rs/Society/5813/Mesic-pardoned-man-convicted-for-murder-of-Serbian-civilians

    ‘Zagreb – Croatian President Stjepan Mesic has decreased by one year the jail sentence to Sinisa Rimac, one of the murderers of the 12-year old Aleksandra Zec and her parents in Zagreb at the end of 1991.

    Rimac was sentenced to eight years behind bars for killings of Serbian civilians at Pakracka Poljana in the west of Slavonia at the end of 1991. Rimac was not sentenced for the murder of Aleksandra Zec and her parents killed by him and other men under command of Tomislav Mercep, then advisor to Croatian home minister, because of procedural mistake!
    Earlier Mesic pardoned Stjepan Grandic by cutting his prison sentence for two years. Grandic was sentenced to ten years in prison for organization of murder of 23 Serbian civilians of Perusic near Gospic in the autumn of 1991.
    Mercep, believed to be involved in crimes against Serbs in Zagreb, Vukovar, Pakracka Poljana and Gospic has not been put on trial until so far. ‘

    Erica Blair

    06/01/2011 at 23:41

  280. “chroniclinghate seems to have Hoare’s proclivity for name calling.”

    Ahahahahahaha! It amuses me how people like Gibbs and Fruno engage in apologist antics for one of the worst racist movement in recent history, yet insists on no ‘name calling’ because well that would be indecent, hehehehe.

    “Please identify a single lie or racist comment of mine either here or elsewhere.”

    I doubt this blog has the space me to post every single comment you have made on here.

    chroniclinghate

    06/01/2011 at 23:41

  281. “Asteri argues that Serbia doesn’t have a problem with organized crime, this is absurd considering how Zoran Djindjic was killed.”

    No, I clearly mentioned that Serbia has a problem with crime, futher more there have been many more political killings in Kosovo in reacent years than in Serbia. What is with you people that you think everything can be rebutted with accusations of Serbophilia and anti-Albanian racism is the truth racist? If i’m to Albophobic for you, read what the Kosovo Albanian oppostion has to say about Thaci and the Mafioso (mis)ruling them, and finally there is a big difforence between a mafia existing in a country and a mafia running it, is Boris Tadic part of the Serbian Mafia?

    Thanks for the link it makes for interesting reading, this how in explains Serbia’s ranking.

    “Serbia’s low ranking is propably due to the question of
    the final status of Kosovo (Serbia) and related problems
    in the south, which have the potential to trigger conflicts
    in several other parts of the region. It has been argued
    that, due to the importance of smuggling during the conflict,
    many of the leaders in the province have a criminal
    background, and may still be involved in trafficking, or at
    least providing protection to traffickers. According to one
    senior UNMIK official, “When we talk of organised crime
    in Kosovo, we are very much dealing with politicians,
    [and] ministers.”441
    These alleged inter-linkages and the incentives they
    create are complex, so it is difficult to say how this might
    affect stability. But the case of the ethnic-Albanian National
    Liberation Army, which sparked off conflict in the
    former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia in 2001, is instructive.
    These rebels/criminals were also tied to the
    KLA, and it has been alleged that the struggle was as
    much about protecting trafficking routes as it was about
    advancing an ethnic agenda. As the International Crisis
    Group wrote at the time:
    The vision of a “Greater Kosovo” only partly explains
    the motivation of the NLA. Few ethnic Albanians in Macedonia
    – as distinct from the diaspora – would want to
    be part of Kosovo or Albania. Yet, a borderless criminal
    network already operates freely in Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo.

    and on crime

    “Keeping Macedonia at risk allows the contraband
    trade in drugs, weapons, cigarettes, and humans
    to flourish unchecked. A destabilised Macedonia
    is profitable both for criminals and for those who dream
    of a pure Albanian section of western Macedonia.
    A recent seizure in the
    former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia provides some
    indication. In November 2007, a major arms cache, sufficient
    to equip 650 soldiers, was discovered, including
    anti-aircraft weaponry. It was found in the possession
    of what was initially described as an “organised crime
    group” but was later labeled a terrorist cell, a shift in perspective
    that is telling in itself. The group had been sheltering
    two escapees from Kosovo prisons.444 In Albania,
    the new Deputy Minister of the Interior Gent Strazmiri
    speaks of criminals, particularly in the border areas, who
    don a “patriotic disguise” and give “political excuses” for
    their illicit activity.445 All this suggests that the overlap between
    the political and the criminal that was manifest
    during open hostilities still prevails along the borders of
    Kosovo, and that these forces have the armament to
    engage militaries if it proves in their interest to do so.”

    Please read this

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/14/kosovo-prime-minister-llike-mafia-boss

    “That’s the best you can do? Fiction about a death bed confession? Are you planning to hop off the fail boat anytime soon?”

    What possible motive could Kouchner have for fabricating that ‘confession’? and since its in a journal from the horses mouth its hardly fiction. You will have to do better than that.

    Asteri

    06/01/2011 at 23:58

  282. ” What is with you people that you think everything can be rebutted with accusations of Serbophilia and anti-Albanian racism is the truth racist?”

    What truth? Pulp fiction about Albanians stealing organs? Certainly it isn’t racist to mention Albanian organized crime but to ignore Serbian crime while exaggerating Albanian involvement smacks of bias.

    “Please read this

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/14/kosovo-prime-minister-llike-mafia-boss

    I am skeptical of the attacks on Thaci considering how many people are parroting the organ myth.

    “Three parallel international investigations, by war crimes investigators from Serbia, the European Union, and the Council of Europe, have failed to uncover any evidence that the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) trafficked the organs of captives, according to sources close to each investigation.”

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/10166800

    “What possible motive could Kouchner have for fabricating that ‘confession’? and since its in a journal from the horses mouth its hardly fiction. You will have to do better than that.”

    Why should we believe the word of a politician without evidence to back up his story?

    chroniclinghate

    07/01/2011 at 00:18

  283. The KLA organ harvesting accusation is not a total no, its more watch this space, we’ll wait and see.

    “Why should we believe the word of a politician without evidence to back up his story?”

    I’m still confused about his motive, I agree politicains are not particually trustworthy, but we are talking Bernard Kouchner here the patron saint of liberal intervention and a good friend of Bernanrd-Henri Levy, good friend of Izetbegovic. It would seem know one from the Bosnian government has tried to sue Kouchner or the French government over the accussation, note its not actually a denial that camps existed.

    Asteri

    07/01/2011 at 00:44

  284. “The KLA organ harvesting accusation is not a total no, its more watch this space, we’ll wait and see.”

    Three investigations including one from Serbia isn’t enough?

    “It would seem know one from the Bosnian government has tried to sue Kouchner or the French government over the accussation, note its not actually a denial that camps existed.”

    There are not enough lawyers in the world to sue everyone who has made a libelous remark about Bosnia.

    chroniclinghate

    07/01/2011 at 00:48

  285. Come on now people lets stop with the imagined jobs in junk foot outlets, baseless accuations of lying and racism and RAE dempartment results. This is turing into a Dynasty style bitch fight.

    Asteri

    07/01/2011 at 02:24

  286. Quite right, Asteri. One shouldn’t stoop – my apologies.

    Re: Organ harvesting. Marty made it quite clear that he had access to sources that were either unavailable or denied to the compilers of the earlier reports. So, yes, it is a case of wait and see.

    frunobulax

    07/01/2011 at 10:23

  287. Multiple investigations in a tiny country failed to turn up any evidence at all; either the KLA is a team of Dexter clones or the whole is a baseless rumor. The people hyping this fiction are not exactly neutral, Switzerland for example is a land with institutionalized Islamophobia (the minaret ban) another article whining about imaginary organ trafficking cited Neil Clark as a source.

    chroniclinghate

    07/01/2011 at 10:49

  288. Switzerland for example is a land with institutionalized Islamophobia

    And yet has one of the largest Kosovar emigre populations is Europe and was one of the first countries to recognise Kosovo. By the way, have you actually read Marty’s report?

    Here’s a snippit of my take on Denis MacShane’s article in the Indy which attempted to poo-poo Marty’s report – DMacS’s text in quotes:

    “And since ‘business’ in the Western Balkans is based on cigarette smuggling and sex slave trafficking as much as legal economic activity the politician who cannot be accused of keeping bad company is a rare animal indeed.” So, on the one hard it’s the Wild West (Balkans) and we shouldn’t expect too much.

    But on the other hand DMacS tries to convince us that: “… Thaci who has been in and out of power for a decade operates as a politician closely supervised by an assortment of UN and EU bodies as well as outside observers and visitors.” And: “There have been thousands of international investigators, police and lawyers operating in Kosovo since 2000.”

    So, Thaci (and the rest) are “closely supervised” by some of the “thousands of international investigators … operating in Kosovo since 2000”, but, we shouldn’t be too surprised if it turns out that Thaci is bankrolled by narcotics and “sex slave trafficking”.

    http://blogs.independent.co.uk/2010/12/23/the-human-organs-of-the-council-of-europe-evidence-please/

    A fine example of compelling logic from one of the Hoare’s fellow cheer-leaders.

    frunobulax

    07/01/2011 at 12:24

  289. “And yet has one of the largest Kosovar emigre populations is Europe and was one of the first countries to recognise Kosovo.”

    So? We are referring to a country that has officially sanctioned anti-Muslim discrimination, clearly the Swiss government is not a neutral party.

    “By the way, have you actually read Marty’s report?”

    Yes but only because I had read all of the Hannibal Lector books.

    “Here’s a snippit of my take on Denis MacShane’s article in the Indy which attempted to poo-poo Marty’s report”

    The nerve of someone actually asking for evidence! Serbophiles are interesting lot; if a mainstream paper reports the actions of Serbian extremists with evidence they scream about a “biased western media conspiracy” when allegations about Albanians without any evidence make into the media they take it as gospel.

    chroniclinghate

    07/01/2011 at 13:50

  290. I wonder if Marty got his ideas from this stupid movie….

    chroniclinghate

    07/01/2011 at 13:56

  291. “So? We are referring to a country that has officially sanctioned anti-Muslim discrimination, clearly the Swiss government is not a neutral party.”

    Hang on, Switzerland is a direct democracy the population voted to ban minarets in a referendum, which was not a ban on mosques or Islam, mosques don’t actually need minarets in the modern world. It was not that different from what France and the Netherlands have done, who’s Muslim population far out stretches the tiny one in Switzerland. Switzerland’s female president was much criticised in the out side world for wearing a head scarf when she visited Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Iran.

    Asteri

    07/01/2011 at 15:03

  292. The nerve of someone actually asking for evidence!

    Sigh. Missing the point (again), which was (for those not paying attention) the glaring inconsistency in MacShane’s article re: Thaci “closely supervised” for the last 10 years, but let’s not be surprised if it turns out that he’s involved in narcotics and “sex slave trafficking”. Not exactly glowing testament to the effectiveness of EULEX “supervision” if they couldn’t monitor the most visible person in tho whole of Kosovo.

    frunobulax

    07/01/2011 at 16:32

  293. “Sigh. Missing the point (again), which was (for those not paying attention) the glaring inconsistency in MacShane’s article re: Thaci “closely supervised” for the last 10 years, but let’s not be surprised if it turns out that he’s involved in narcotics and “sex slave trafficking”. Not exactly glowing testament to the effectiveness of EULEX “supervision” if they couldn’t monitor the most visible person in tho whole of Kosovo.”

    I see no inconsistency in MacShane’s article; you are distorting what he wrote.

    chroniclinghate

    08/01/2011 at 01:30

  294. “Hang on, Switzerland is a direct democracy the population voted to ban minarets in a referendum, which was not a ban on mosques or Islam, mosques don’t actually need minarets in the modern world.”

    Something as precious as religious freedom should not be subject to the whims of the majority.

    chroniclinghate

    08/01/2011 at 01:31

  295. “Something as precious as religious freedom should not be subject to the whims of the majority.”

    Why should a small minority impose its will on a majority, it had nothing to do with religious freedom.

    Minerets are used to imposse apon the landscape, go to the charming Bosnian city of Mostar and see the the Mineret vs church spire battle going on between the Croats and Muslims, “my spire is way bigger than your mineret! oh yeah, well I’ll make an even bigger Mineret”

    Asteri

    08/01/2011 at 03:09

  296. “Why should a small minority impose its will on a majority”

    Typical Islamophobia from someone who thinks it’s 1824; exercising the right to build on private property is not “imposing” your will on anyone, if so billboards should also be banned.

    ” it had nothing to do with religious freedom.”

    It has everything to do with religious freedom.

    “Minerets are used to imposse apon the landscape, go to the charming Bosnian city of Mostar and see the the Mineret vs church spire battle going on between the Croats and Muslims, “my spire is way bigger than your mineret! oh yeah, well I’ll make an even bigger Mineret”

    That has to do nationalist nonsense, by your logic we should also ban flags since NI unionists and nationalists use banners in the same manner.

    chroniclinghate

    08/01/2011 at 13:32

  297. It’s hard to think that Kouchner would deliberately lie about Izetbegovic’s deathbed comments and yet they don’t make sense as they stand. One has to try and understand what the substance of the conversation might have been and Sarah Correia has put her finger on one possible explanation – confusion in translation.

    Equally, there’s no reason to believe that Izetbegovic or anyone else would not initially have had reason to suspect that Omarska, Keraterm, Susnica, etc. were not extermination camps as the early reports of the conduct of the Bosnian Serb campaign of 1992 began to emerge. What actually took place at Omarska, for example, was the systematic extermination of the social, political and economic leadership of the non-Serb population of the Prijedor area, in order to remove any focus of opposition to the Bosnian Serb takeover and interference with its intended adjustment of the (strategically important) area’s population.

    Omarska was not in fact another Auschwitz, in the sense that although it was certainly a death camp it was not a systematic, industrially-organised extermination camp for the non-Serb population as a whole. However while members of the “non-elite” population were being processed (“interrogated”) at Omarska or Keraterm preparatory to expulsion or exchange via the system’s satellite camps at Trnopolje and Manjaca they endured conditions of brutal mistreatment, starvation and an abysmal hygiene regime that led to the loss of 20-30 kilos body weight within a very short time. It was not unreasonable to compare the situation in the short-lived Prijedor camps – Omarska, Keraterm, Manjaca and Trnopolje – to that which prevailed in the longer-established Nazi labour and concentration camps such as Belsen. Professor David Campbell has discussed the issue in his effective analysis of LM’s criticism of the ITN photograph of Fikret Alic.

    It was conditions at Keraterm, from where Fikret Alic had been transferred the night before he was filmed by the ITN team and interveiewed by Penny Matthews, that lay behind the image that shocked the world and forced the international community to take account of the Bosnian Serb death camps.

    The shock was genuine and anyone who attempts to portray the public’s response to the image as a simple jump/push to conclusions is simply on the other side of a fence to their fellow human beings who saw the full coverage when it was broadcast. frunobulax’s “notorious image” may have fronted the revelations but it was reinforced by devastating footage and interviews at Trnopolje and Omarska. The substance of Penny Matthews’s, ian Williams’s and Ed Vulliamy’s reporting was eventually confirmed at the LM libel case hearing by Dr Merdzanic, the Trnopolje camp doctor, whose evidence destroyed LM and their defence.

    What happened to Alic was not unique and despite denialists’ suggestions to the contrary his condition was not explained by any previous medical condition. The ITN coverage – and the footage shot by the accompanying RTS team – show other prisoners in the same skeletal condition. They too had been starved and forced to endure dysenteric conditions at Keraterm. In addition Alic had his intestines irreparably damaged by the beatings he received at Keraterm.

    The prisoners were filmed at Trnopolje after being transferred there for purposes of their eventual removal from Serb-controlled territory (and in the rush to close down the worst of the camps after Karadzic was interviewed about rumours in the international press). Other inmates at Trnopolje included large numbers of Bosniak civilians fleeing the terror campaign being conducted by Bosnian Serb forces in the surrounding area.

    The other camp inmates at Trnopolje had not undergone the same brutal treatment as Alic and his fellow ex-Keraterm inmates but were nevertheless vulnerable to the killings, beatings and rape that were common in the camp if they wished to take advantage of the opportunity to escape the perils of their situation by agreeing to be expelled/ransomed from Republika Srpska.

    The Prijedor camps system was described unreservedly by Cherif Bassiouni’s UN Commission of Inquiry as a concentration camp system and various ICTY trials explicitly drew on the Nuremburg legal precedents established in trying staff of the Nazi concentration camps.

    So let’s be clear. The camps were concentration camps. They were death camps. They were camps in which the local elite were exterminated. But they did not turn out to be industrial killing machines like Auschwitz (possibly because they never had the time to become institutionally organised like Auschwitz – who knows, comments such as those by members of the SDS hierarchy that mixed-race children should be turned into soap offer an insight into the thinking of the individuals involved) . In that context Izetbegovic’s apparent change of heart as reported by Kouchner is quite understandable and is not the evidence of duplicity it is so determinedly represented as.

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 15:52

  298. I’m surprised that Dr Hoare has chosen not to reply to my query re: the provenance of Cohen’s book ‘Serbia’s Secret War: Propaganda and the Deceit of History’. Hoare’s review on Amazon (titled ‘Sets the record straight’) gives the book a five star review and includes the following: “As a Jew who is disgusted by the way Serbian nationalists exploited the history of the Holocaust for their own genocidal purposes” [1]. Cohen’s book is cited on numerous wiki pages. blogs and was often quoted by politicians. It’s not just that many take it to be the primary reference , it’s often the sole one. Seems astounding that an ‘amateur historian’ [2] somehow managed to turn out such a seminal work of history. In fact, so astounding that I wouldn’t be too surprised if it turned out that Cohen was merely the ‘front man’, selected precisely because he is Jewish, and that the entire book is a state-sponsored propaganda tract based on the racist scribblings of Ljubica Stefan. In which case, you’d have to admire their chutzpah in using the phrase ‘Propaganda and the Deceit of History’ in the title. The truth on this will come out sooner or later. Hoare’s proclivity in accusing those who disagree with him to ‘first check their sources’ adds a certain frisson to this issue.

    [1] Note how Hoare lambasts Gibbs for explaining that “As a practicing Jew from a refugee family” but nevertheless finds it apt that Cohen is “a Jew”.

    [2] Amongst Hoare’s favourite pejoratives is ‘amateur historian’ – he uses it numerous times. But not in describing Cohen.

    frunobulax

    08/01/2011 at 16:03

  299. Owen Jones: The Prijedor camps system was described unreservedly by Cherif Bassiouni’s UN Commission of Inquiry as a concentration camp system and various ICTY trials explicitly drew on the Nuremburg legal precedents established in trying staff of the Nazi concentration camps.

    UN Commission of Inquiry… ICTY trials… Odd that such bodies have not seen fit to put Israel on trial. I guess that’s a function of the UN and the ICTY being owned lock, stock and barrel by the imperialist powers. I wonder if Owen is angling for a job at the Henry Jackson Society. They are always looking for bright young things who know how to put the proper spin on things.

    louisproyect

    08/01/2011 at 17:32

  300. Izetbegovic, Kouchner et al, as politicians, were referring to the widespread perceptions that resulted from these portrayals in the press – not the niceties of academic distinctions since these were irrelevant to their aims at the time.

    Also, Fikret Alic, however badly he was mistreated, was clearly unrepresentative of the majority at the camp. Perhaps Marshall and Williams nonetheless decided that Alic was “emblematic” even if he wasn’t representative.

    frunobulax

    08/01/2011 at 17:42

  301. Louis Proyect, I’m probably about the same age as you so I don’t need your silly patronising. Forget the fairground point scoring about the UN and the ICTY, just show a sign that you’re capable of understanding the substance of what I was talking about.

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 18:18

  302. “the right to build on private property is not “imposing” your will on anyone, if so billboards should also be banned.”

    they should.

    “It’s hard to think that Kouchner would deliberately lie about Izetbegovic’s deathbed comments and yet they don’t make sense as they stand. One has to try and understand what the substance of the conversation might have been and Sarah Correia has put her finger on one possible explanation – confusion in translation.”

    Alija Izetbegovic spoke French and English, and Kouchner speaks fluent English, it would seem that confusion in translation is highly unlikely, though not impossible.

    Asteri

    08/01/2011 at 18:21

  303. frunubolax, you might be surprised that I agree that Fikret Alic probably wasn’t representative of the majority of the people in the camp at Trnopolje. Most of them were local people from Kozarac and the surrounding area who had been terrorised into leaving their homes by artillery bombardment, marauding soldiers and the rest of the viciousness of ethnic cleansing. There was brutality including murder and in particular rape, since Trnopolje was where most of the non-Serb women forced out of their homes were taken to. However the majority of the people in Trnopolje hadn’t previously passed through the other more vicious elements of the Prijedor system. Alic was certainly representative of those who survived the more vicious elements of the Prijedor system, Omarska, Keraterm and Manjaca. You appear to select Trnopolje as emblematic of the Prijedor concentration camps, like LM, like Chomsky, like all the other rogues who prefer to avoid confronting the reality that Omarska was what defined the system. Omarska was a place of systematic murder, brutalisation and rape, and murder, brutalisation and rape took place there for a purpose. Fikret Alic is emblematic certainly, emblematic of the general vileness of what was done to ordinary people like you and me in Prijedor in the spring and summer of 1992.

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 18:31

  304. Modernity (in non-administrative capacity)

    UN Commission of Inquiry… ICTY trials… Odd that such bodies have not seen fit to put Israel on trial. I guess that’s a function of the UN and the ICTY being owned lock, stock and barrel by the imperialist powers. I wonder if Owen is angling for a job at the Henry Jackson Society. They are always looking for bright young things who know how to put the proper spin on things. “

    Is an odd reply.

    It seems to imply that Louis Proyect doesn’t believe that there were concentration camps, and until he clarifies his views we won’t really know what his precise view is.

    So a direct question to Louis Proyect, do you believe that these camps were concentration camps or not ?

    A direct answer would be appreciated.

    modernityblog

    08/01/2011 at 19:22

  305. Asteri, I’m sure you know how easy it is for two very competent non-native speakers of English (or other lingua franca) to believe that they understand all the nuances of the language they are sharing – put two such in a room together and see how long it takes for a misunderstanding to arise. I was using the word “translation” in a portmanteau sense.

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 21:28

  306. Fair enough Owen, we will never know for sure, but Kouchner’s English is more than competent its fluent to the level of native fluency.

    Here Izetbegovic speaks in (a very thick Bosnian accent) French for French TV in 1993, I can’t speak French, so can’t judge his ability.

    His English in this one sounds excellent and clear, despite the Yugoslav comentary over the it.

    Asteri

    08/01/2011 at 22:35

  307. The issue is about the making what happened in Bosnia 100% synonymous with the Nazi holocaust.

    Fikret Alic is emblematic certainly, emblematic of the general vileness of what was done to ordinary people like you and me in Prijedor in the spring and summer of 1992. Perhaps. But as far as the tabloids and much of the rest of the Western media were concerned, it was the emaciation of Alic which conveyed the significant message, even though that was atypical of the group (as evident from the photos).

    Not unrelated is Dr Hoare’s article: Jasenovac – not that bad really (I’m paraphrasing). The crux of the matter is the degree suggested by ‘that’.

    frunobulax

    08/01/2011 at 22:43

  308. frunobulax, I noted that people who challenge the substance of the ITN reporting of Omarska and Trnopolje always focus on Trnopolje and avoid confronting the reality that Omarska was what defined the system. Do you have any comments about Omarska, Keraterm or the Prijedor camp system as a whole?

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 23:20

  309. Asteri, I don’t think you quite followed what I said.

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 23:22

  310. Sorry, Asteri, re-reading I think you did in fact follow me, but were reluctant to agree with me in the specific instance.

    Owen

    08/01/2011 at 23:45

  311. Oo Marko, please come back and pay attention to me Marko, please please please ! I’m so lonely without you Marko !

    Shorter Frunobulax

    09/01/2011 at 10:35

  312. Since the discussion is now on the specific detail of Kouchnner’s statements, and since we cannot verify in what language the conversations between Izetbegovic and Mitterrand occured, I though I should add one more comment.

    1- the use of the expression logor or even extermination camp by Izetbegovic does not imply that there was an intent to deceive the French President. The argument that the Bosnian Muslims used deception is one that is part of the line of arguing of the group of people who try to minimize the seriousness of the war in Bosnia and above all its impact on the Bosnian Muslim population.

    2- The situation in Bosnia at the time of Mitterrand’s visit to Sarajevo was extremelly desperate for the Bosnian Muslims. The Serbs had control over a substancial part of the territory, while the Muslims lacked even a properly organized army. The Muslims also lacked an efficient informations system. It was known, however, that there had been massacres against the non-Serb civilian population in many places, as documented, for instance by Ron Aviv, and foreign observers like officials of the UN High Commission for Refugees saw trucks full of dead bodies being transported. This was the context in which Izetbegovic transmitted to Mitterrand the information about the camps in Northwest Bosnia.

    3- There is a very disturbing fact:
    Mitterrand as well as Kouchnner were informed about the existence of camps, be that extermination camps, concentration camps or simply logor, on 28-29 June 1992.
    However, Kouchnner only visited the camp of Omarka days after 6 of August. Until 5 of August the Serb forces did not grant access to anyone. The Guardian and ITN seized the moment during the peace talks and managed to get there. On 6 August the news of the existence of the camps was out.

    4- We may question ourselves as to why the French government did not manage to verify the information that Izetbegovic had given before the journalists got there. It is unfortunate that not so much research has been carried about the level of complicity of the French governments during Mitterrands’ era as there has been about the British government under Major.

    5- What is certain is that by the time Kouchnner got to Omarska, with the Red Cross, the camp was already being dismantled. A great number of prisoners had been sent to Manjaca; the quality and quantity of the food and water had improved; a barber was brought to cut the prisoners hair and thus make them look less miserable; and beds, including bed linen was brought.

    6- Regardless of these improvements, people were still getting killed, as it was proven in court in different trials. The remaining prisoners were forced to clean up the place and remove as much as possible the visible signs of torture. However, even nowadays anyone who visits the infamous ‘white house’, as I did, can still find traces of torture there and marks of bullet holes. That place was never in control of anyone other than Serbs so nobody can argue that is fabricated.

    7- In an interview given to french tv after Izetbegovic’s death, Kouchnner was very fast to assert that the information that Izetbegovic had given about extermination camps was not correct. The exact words of Izetbegovic when Kouchnner visited him before he died, and the tone with which Izetbegovic spoke are not known. Although I am not implying that Kouchnner is lying, what Izetbegovic said is filtered by his own interpretation. For someone who built a career as a humanitarian, the failure to verify in due time the nature of the camps and the extension of the human rights violations there is doubtless and stain in Kouchnner’s career, but is consistent with the overall attitude of the French givernment towards Bosnia during the war.

    8- Even admitting that there was on the part of Izetbegovic the intention to inflate the seriousness of the reality of the camps (something which would only be possible if he did have accurate informations, which we know he didn’t have), that does not make him any less innocent in what regards the crimes committed there. I find very disturbing the frequent attempts to cast doubts against the behaviour of the Bosnian Muslim leadership by pointing out to minor issues like this, bearing in mind the scale of the war. It is as if the status of main victims on the war should be denied to them due to the fact that in some occasions reprehensible behaviour of actions happened. The uprising of the Warsaw Ghetto does not make the Jews any less victims, nor does the fact that Jews were involved in black market, or that some acted cruelly in their roles of ghetto police or camp ‘kapos’. War is a dirty business that destroys to a great extent the dignity of those who participate (voluntarily or unwillingly) in it.

    As Owen points out, the fixation on Trnopolje is a tactic to divert the discussion over the nature of the camps in the municipality of Prijedor away from Omarska.

    Sarah Correia

    09/01/2011 at 15:37

  313. Even admitting that there was on the part of Izetbegovic the intention to inflate the seriousness of the reality of the camps

    Inflation has been the modus operandi for describing the total number of fatalities in the Bosnian wars since they ended. How is it that years after the definitive death toll of ~100,000 was determined, people who should know better (e.g. Holbrooke) continually talked about 250,000 dead, or even 330,000? It’s no small difference is it? However, any pronouncement that seems to lessen the magnitude of Serb evil (as widely, if superficially perceived) is almost never challenged even though it is proven to be patently wrong.

    I don’t dispute the realities of the conditions at the various camps, but I do believe that the Izetbegovic – Kouchner exchange does illuminate how perceptions were manipulated for political ends. Kouchner is no naive politician, and he knew exactly what he was doing in reporting that exchange.

    frunobulax

    09/01/2011 at 18:05

  314. frunobulax, if you don’t dispute the realities of the treatment meted out in the camps why are you so dismissive of the comparison between the SDS and the National Socialists? Was the treatment that Fikret Alic and the other emaciated ex-inmates of Keraterm received much different from the treatment meted out to inmates in most of the equivalent Nazi camps? My understanding is that it took the Nazis rather longer in power to reach the levels of brutal depravity that prevailed in the Prijedor camps than it took the SDS, a party whose upper hierarchy included people like Radislav Vukic who reckoned children of mixed marriages “were good only for making soap.”

    Owen

    10/01/2011 at 00:07

  315. So a direct question to Louis Proyect, do you believe that these camps were concentration camps or not ?

    Maybe. I have not really looked into this particular question in any kind of depth. However, if so, the Serbs were not doing anything much different than what the USA and Britain have done repeatedly. The Philippines, Vietnam, Japanese-Americans during WWII, the Mau Mau in Kenya, Malaysia, and so it goes. Capitalist war is characterized by extreme brutality toward civilian populations. The civil war in Bosnia was not that much different from what does on Africa on a regular basis. You should read Basil Davidson’s “The Black Man’s Burden: Africa and the Curse of the Nation-State”. It has a chapter on Yugoslavia, a country that Davidson knew intimately as a British operative working with Tito’s forces during WWII. My problem is with how “the decent left” wrapped itself in the Stars and Stripes and the Union Jack when it came to Yugoslavia. They say that patriotism is the last refuge of scoundrels. I think it is the first actually.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 00:11

  316. Owen: Louis Proyect, I’m probably about the same age as you so I don’t need your silly patronising.

    Sorry, I mistook you for a much younger Eustonian.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 00:13

  317. From the wiki on the Philippines war:

    Filipino villagers were forced into concentration camps called reconcentrados which were surrounded by free-fire zones, or in other words “dead zones.” Furthermore, these camps were overcrowded and filled with disease, causing the death rate to be extremely high. Conditions in these “reconcentrados” were inhumane. Between January and April 1902, 8,350 prisoners of approximately 298,000 died. Some camps incurred death rates as high as 20 percent. “One camp was two miles by one mile (3.2 by 1.6 km) in area and ‘home’ to some 8,000 Filipinos. Men were rounded up for questioning, tortured, and summarily executed.”[83]

    Get that? 8,350 prisoners died. 350 more than Srebrenica. And this was done by the world’s greatest democracy that people like Michael Ignatieff, Paul Berman, Marko Hoare and Christopher Hitchens never get tired of hailing as the savior of Iraqis, Afghans, and other deserving beneficiaries of the white man’s burden.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 00:25

  318. Louis either posts guilt by association smears or whataboutery.

    “Get that? 8,350 prisoners died. 350 more than Srebrenica. ”

    From the wikipedia entry on the Srebrenica massacre:

    “Death(s) 8,372+”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Srebrenica_massacre

    Your repulsive is that “Omarska and the camps were not a big deal, look the camps in the Phillipines were worse” except if we follow this line of reasoning then you should also forget the camps for Filipinos since the Laogai death camps were worse.

    ” It is estimated that in the last 50 years more than 50 million people have been sent to laogai camps.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laogai

    Death estimates range from 15 million to 27 million, Louis has called the Chinese revolution “one of the epochal achievements of humanity” (from a Maoist website he writes for) and Mao the “greatest revolutionary.”

    chroniclinghate

    10/01/2011 at 01:35

  319. Of course, the Chinese revolution is an epochal achievement. So was the American revolution that put an even more brutal ruling group in power that was responsible for even more deaths in the slave trade and in the extermination of the American Indian. Same thing with the Napoleonic phase of the Russian revolution. Or the British bourgeois revolution that unleashed Cromwell’s terror in Ireland. You seem to have this sappy, idealized view of historical change that you must have learned in high school civics class. That goes along with your sappy “chroniclinghate” tag.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 02:36

  320. Sorry for the boo-boo. Obviously I meant the French revolution in writing about Napoleon.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 02:37

  321. Louis Proyect,

    I would appreciate a reply to my questions concerning camps in the Balkans, do you consider them to be concentration camps ?

    And if not, why not?

    (modernity – in non-admin mode)

    modernity

    10/01/2011 at 02:47

  322. Louis ignored most of my post and posted one liners instead; not exactly a surprise.

    “You seem to have this sappy, idealized view of historical change that you must have learned in high school civics class.”

    Since you like wikipedia I suggest reading their entry on projection.

    ” That goes along with your sappy “chroniclinghate” tag.”

    That’s rich coming from someone who calls himself the “last unrepentant Marxist.”

    chroniclinghate

    10/01/2011 at 03:11

  323. Unembarrassed by an obvious lack of familiarity with the subject, this ‘tenured full professor’ of history at the University of Arizona recycles propaganda about the events at Srebrenica that has long been recognized as promoting misunderstanding and antagonism. My “Part II” response to Prof. David Gibbs can be found here

    http://danieltoljaga.wordpress.com/2011/01/09/debating-genocide-deniers-part-iiii/

    No further commentary is necessary.

    Daniel Toljaga

    10/01/2011 at 03:25

  324. For those interested, here’s a new book which sheds light on the sort of witness used by the ICTY.

    http://www.zcommunications.org/srebrenica-the-star-witness-by-edward-herman

    Erica Blair

    10/01/2011 at 15:45

  325. Erica Blair, I’d be quite happy to read an objective study of Erdemovic, his background and his evidence. There are problems about any evidence which may have involved plea bargaining or promises of mitigated sentencing. But Erdemovic was a single witness and doubts concerning his testimony have to be weighed against the mass of evidence from other sources, tested by defence teams as well as the prosecution, which not only went to proving the substance of the genocidal massacre but also the extent to which systematic efforts were made to conceal and dispose of the evidence that would have made the testimony of Erdemovic redundant.

    And if you are seriously suggesting the combination of Ed Herman, Germinal Civikov, John Laughland and Srebrenica Historical Project is likely to provide me with a more reliable insight into matters relating to Srebrenica than even Erdemovic, I think perhaps you ought to get out more.

    Owen

    10/01/2011 at 16:20

  326. You can decide for yourselves, the PDF of the book is here:

    http://www.srebrenica-project.com/DOWNLOAD/books/Star_witness.pdf

    Can’t say that I’ve got time to plough through this, but the stuff mentioned in the review (e.g. non-extradition of Marko Boskic) – is that for real? If so, how could that make any sense?

    frunobulax

    10/01/2011 at 17:11

  327. Sorry, should be ‘long delayed’ non-extradition.

    frunobulax

    10/01/2011 at 17:13

  328. Louis Proyect,

    I would appreciate a reply to my questions concerning camps in the Balkans, do you consider them to be concentration camps ?

    And if not, why not?

    I think I answered your question already. I said maybe. I simply have not really looked into the question sufficiently to give an intelligent answer. I would say that it is entirely possible because the war in Bosnia was marked by ethnic cleansing, atavism, and brutality of all sorts.

    My main interest in Yugoslavia has been to explain how things came to such an extreme state. In 1972, when I was working for a bank in Boston, my boss went to Yugoslavia for a vacation. Back then, the country was a real magnet for tourists even though it was “communist”.

    How this relatively prosperous and ethnically tolerant state imploded is really the big question for the left. Since I don’t really have any inkling whether you are any kind of leftist, Mr. Modernity, I admit that this question might be unimportant to you.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 17:43

  329. Louis Proyect,

    Thank you for that answer.

    So you think that maybe there were concentration camps in the Balkans, but you are not too sure.

    Following on from that, do you believe that there were killings at Srebrenica in July 1995?

    Secondly, as far as you know, do you think that genocide was committed at Srebrenica?

    If not, why not ?

    I’m asking these questions to clarify your views for my own satisfaction. I am interested in what other people think.

    modernity

    10/01/2011 at 20:40

  330. (Modernity-in Admin mode.)

    frunobulax,

    Please reread the comments policy.

    I want no links to genocide denying sites or such authors, I hope you understand that, which should have been clear from my FIRST remarks on this thread.

    modernityblog

    10/01/2011 at 21:13

  331. (Modernity-in Admin mode.)

    Erica Blair,

    Please reread the comments policy.

    I want no links to genocide denying sites or such authors, I hope you understand that, which should have been clear from my FIRST remarks on this thread.

    modernityblog

    10/01/2011 at 21:13

  332. To those readers who don’t quite understand my above comments, its apparent to me, even after some brief research, that the Srebrenica Project group are a bunch of denialists.

    As for Herman, he clearly pushes genocide denial.

    Therefore, I would suggest that any readers unfamiliar with this blogs attitude towards genocide denial reread my comments policy.

    modernityblog

    10/01/2011 at 22:11

  333. Following on from that, do you believe that there were killings at Srebrenica in July 1995?

    Yes.

    Secondly, as far as you know, do you think that genocide was committed at Srebrenica?

    No.

    If not, why not ?

    Because genocide is a systematic attempt to exterminate a population. I don’t consider the American war in Vietnam, Iraq or Afghanistan as genocidal even though concentrations camps and mass killings of civilians was involved. In fact, I probably mostly agree with you on what happened at Srebrenica but I simply refuse to call it “genocide”. I have a real aversion to using language in an imprecise manner. For example, it drives me nuts when people thrown around the term “fascist”.

    You, of course, are free to use the term genocidal if that works for you. Who am I to convince you otherwise, especially since I don’t have a clue about your politics. I have no idea if I am speaking to a socialist, a liberal, a conservative–or whatever.

    louisproyect

    10/01/2011 at 23:33

  334. Herman also denies the Rwanda genocide, like Louis he is deluded enough to think that his opinion tops verdicts, investigations and DNA analysis.

    chroniclinghate

    10/01/2011 at 23:41

  335. Louis Proyect,

    Just a follow-up, would you concede, that from the available evidence, that over 8000+ people were killed at Srebrenica in July 1995?

    modernityblog

    11/01/2011 at 00:03

  336. When did I disagree with this figure? I thought that both David Gibbs and I accepted it. I think that everybody understands that there was an atrocity whatever the numbers. If it was “only” a thousand, it would still be a war crime.

    louisproyect

    11/01/2011 at 00:13

  337. Louis Proyect,

    It wasn’t a trick.

    I haven’t READ much of the earlier thread, THEREFORE, I didn’t know your views on the topic, so LOGICALLY that’s why I asked a question….if you see what I mean….

    modernityblog

    11/01/2011 at 00:25

  338. Professor Gibbs,

    I would like to clarify your views by virtue of a few direct questions, please indulge me:

    1. Do you believe that there were killings at Srebrenica in July 1995?

    2. Do you believe that over 8,000 people were killed at Srebrenica?

    3. Do you think that genocide was committed at Srebrenica?

    If not, why not ?

    As with my questions to the other posters, I would appreciate it if you could engage directly with those points.

    modernityblog

    11/01/2011 at 16:53

  339. Modernity, Prof. Gibbs as quoted seems to be quite clear that he considers that genocide is an exaggerated description for what happened at Srebrenica and he also endorses K. Southwick’s argument, which as I understand it (and I haven’t read the full article) refers to the absence of proof of intent and contests the notion that intent can be inferred (apologies if I’m wrong). If the Second Coming of Joe McCarthy hasn’t driven him from the scene, the questions it might be appropriate to ask him as a historian referring to Balkan issues are:
    (a) Does he consider that the ICTY was right or wrong in the Krstic judgments to determine that the Bosnian Serbs intended to eliminate the Muslim population of Eastern Bosnia and that the Muslim population of Eastern Bosnia was a sufficiently substantial and defined group to fall within the scope of the Genocide Convention?
    (b) Does he consider that the ICTY was right or wrong to find that the crime of genocide at Srebrenica encompassed not only the killing of the 8372+ men, women and children but also the systematic and forcible removal of survivors – predominantly women and children – along with other crimes?
    (c) Does he believe that the evidence of the systematic way in which the removal of the population of the enclave of Srebrenica was organised demonstrated in the Popovic et al. judgment is adequate evidence of intent to carry out the Republika Srpska plan for the removal of the border along the Drina River and the creation of a Serb territory by removing the Muslim population of the area?

    Prof. Gibbs has ventured his views on responsibility for the killings at Srebrenica and the finding of genocide. Those views either demonstrate substantial ignorance or fail adequately to explain Gibbs’s refutation of clearly explained legal findings. As a professional historian he has a responsibility to clarify his position.

    Owen

    13/01/2011 at 09:50

  340. Excellent points, Owen.

    I have now read the thread, finally, and will post on it shortly, time permitting.

    modernity

    13/01/2011 at 14:35

  341. […] by modernityblog| Leave a comment I finally got around to reading all of the 339+ comments on David Gibbs’ guest post and I must say I am […]

  342. @modernity The media exclusively showed pictures from Serbian prison camps, The UN had at that time identified nine prison camps in Bosnia,of which no less than six were Croatian,two Serbian and one Muslim. Violations of the Geneva Convention on Human rights occured in all of them. When a mass grave was made up of Muslims,the media flocked like vultures, when a mass grave was made up of Serbs, who cared>? there were no ‘pullitzer prize winning’ journalists taking close angle zoom shots of the suffering and the deaths of the Serbian people, who cared that tens of thousands of Serbs were ethnically cleansed and killed, The west certainly didnt. The west should be truly ashamed of its one sided coverage and its revisionist history. Attrocities were committed on all sides against eachother,but only the Serbian people would be blamed. From the start the suffering of the Serbs was ignored and every story of violance and carnage laid at their door, the media projected the contrived image of the ‘Good Muslim and Croats’ against the ‘evil Serbs’, as thought the good Muslims and Croats had never massacred thousands of Serbs,let alone eachother.
    This does not exonerate attrocities committed by the Serbian militia,it simply maintains that all sides in the conflict committed attrocities against eachother,but only the Serbs would be publicly blamed and demonised.

    smtx01

    14/01/2011 at 11:47

  343. “This does not exonerate attrocities committed by the Serbian militia,it simply maintains that all sides in the conflict committed attrocities against eachother,but only the Serbs would be publicly blamed and demonised.”

    smtx01,

    You seem to be taking a very ideological view of this issue, deciding who’s to blame and then retrospectively adjusting the weight given to events accordingly.

    That is not how historians should approach the subject.

    If you have any specific point concerning Srebrenica please say so, I am sure that one of my expert readers would gladly engage you in the matter.

    modernity

    14/01/2011 at 12:15

  344. “In theological terms, the moral and political equalizing was embodied in the statement by the Serb Church spokesman that “everyone in this war is guilty.”57 The ramifications of such a statement go beyond theological doctrines of original sin. The notion that everyone is guilty in the Bosnian conflict is a generalized statement that leads downslope to the conclusion that Bosnian people are in some sense getting what they deserve. Indeed, the view that the victims of genocide deserve what they get is more often a subtext of the language of moral and political equalizing; only rarely does an influential columnist such as Thomas Friedman articulate the message directly.”
    -Michael Sells

    “when a mass grave was made up of Serbs, who cared>?”

    Total fiction, if that was the case why did the Serbian nationalist newspaper Glas Javnosti portray a mass grave of Bosniaks as a mass grave of Serbs? If both sides were “just as bad” why did they have to resort to falsehoods?

    “there were no ‘pullitzer prize winning’ journalists taking close angle zoom shots of the suffering and the deaths of the Serbian people, who cared that tens of thousands of Serbs were ethnically cleansed and killed, The west certainly didnt. ”

    Operation Storm was not ethnic cleansing the authorities of the “Serb republic of Krajina” evacuated the population.

    “At the [Supreme] Council of Defence [of the Republic of Serb Krajina] the worst possible decision was taken – for the evacuation of the population. It would be shown that that was worse even than the decision to capitulate. The Supreme Council [of Defence of the Republic of Serb Krajina] could have taken one of the following decisions. The first would have been: to have continued with the defence and to have, on the night of 4-5 August [1995] organised its units and prepared the command for the action that needed to be taken in the following days. The basis for such an action would have been the taking of all possible measures and actions forseen by the plan, including action against the Croatian towns. An integral part of this option would have been to turn to UNPROFOR, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the Republika Srpska… [ellipsis in the original] The second decision could have been: to offer a ceasefire and accept negotiations with Croatia, through the mediation of the Security Council. However the negotiations went and however unfavourable they might have been for the RSK [Republic of Serb Krajina], the people would have remained on the terrain and its status would have been incomparably better than going into exile. The third possible decision would have been to have evacuated only that part of the population that was endangered at that time, and those were the parts of northern Dalmatia and the southern part of Lika. Unfortunately, the option that the Supreme Council of Defence took meant the evacuation of the entire civilian population, as well as the police and army, from the entire territory of the western part of the RSK. Those who took such a decision on evacuation must have known well and knew, that they had taken the entire people and army into exile. If this was not realised by certain members of the Supreme Council of Defence, present at the session was the commander of the General Staff of the Serb Army of Krajina, who certainly knew it. It was his obligation and duty to tell members of the council what it meant to take such a decision, to warn them, and that if it was nevertheless carried, to define it as it was envisaged – the evacuation of the people, police and army from the western part of the RSK.”
    -Milisav Sekulic

    An ethnic cleansing of Serbs did occur though; the policies of Karadzic and company caused thousands of Serbs to flee what was once Yugoslavia, Sells estimates that 500,000 Serbs fled as a result of Chetnik policies.

    “The west should be truly ashamed of its one sided coverage and its revisionist history.”

    The cornerstone of Serb nationalism (other than mass murder and lying of course) self pity, this troll thinks that “the west” owes every member of an obscure ethnic group an apology because the media *gasp* reported what the Chetniks were up to.

    ” Attrocities were committed on all sides against eachother”

    This is nothing more bull**** designed to justify genocide.

    “but only the Serbian people would be blamed.”

    This is how a Serb nationalist “thinks” any criticism of chetniks equals an attack on all Serbs; what blatant tribal collectivism.

    “From the start the suffering of the Serbs was ignored”

    Another key trait of Serb nationalism; the concept of the “long suffering Serbs” or the myth that the Serbian people have been uniquely victimized.

    “and every story of violance and carnage laid at their door, the media projected the contrived image of the ‘Good Muslim and Croats’ against the ‘evil Serbs’, as thought the good Muslims and Croats had never massacred thousands of Serbs,let alone eachother.”

    And here we have hyperbole about a media conspiracy.

    “This does not exonerate attrocities committed by the Serbian militia”

    At least be honest if you are going to be a pro-Chetnik apologist; your entire post is designed to exonerate them.

    “it simply maintains that all sides in the conflict committed attrocities against eachother,but only the Serbs would be publicly blamed and demonised.”

    See above. The whining about “demonization” is hypocrisy, Serb nationalist and their supporters portray Slavic Muslims as evil fundamentalist terrorists, Croats as Ustashas and Albanians as criminals. Other posters have already demolished the fiction about Bosnian defenders committing “massacres”, it is true that the Croat HVO carried atrocities (against Bosniaks) however they were allies of the Chetniks. The argument that Bosnian defenders were “just as bad” is nearly identical to the Turkish nationalist lie that the Armenian resistance committed a “genocide against Turks” both falsehoods are designed to justify genocide and portray the victims as “terrorists” who got what they deserved.

    Riley

    14/01/2011 at 12:15

  345. @riley the same Thomas Freidman who said; ‘The idea that people are still holding rock concerts in Belgrade,or going out for Sunday merry-go round rides,while their fellow Serbs are ‘cleansing’ Kosovo,is outrageous.It should be lights out Belgrade;every power grid,water pipe,bridge,road and war related factory has to be targeted.Like it or not,we are war with the Serbian nation(The Serbs certainly think so) and the stakes have to be very clear;every week you ravage kosovo is another decade we will set your country back by pulverising you.You want 1950? we can do 1950.You want 1389?we can do 1389.
    Riley you mock the mis identification of victims.You have no clue what are you are talking about.The media carefully and methodically demonised the Serbs to the brink of oblivion,in almost every paper,from the Guardian to the Independent to the French l’Observateur, to the International Herald Tribune.all these papers began using vile grotesque caricatures in a manner reminiscent of Nazi propaganda.These cartoons depicted Serbs as genocidal baby killers,as pigs crawling out of sewers,as monkeys not yet evolved, as drunken barbarians.Similary the photos published in the Financial Times depicting the ‘grim reality of Serbias ethnic cleansing policy’,actually depicted a Serbian woman sitting amongst the ruins of one of the 50 demolished villages in Srebrenica.The same is true of the photo of a paramilitary soldier,headlined as ‘A Serb’,although his insignia clearly identified him as a Croat Ustasha.Serb victims of ethnic cleansing were either misidentified as another ethnicity or not identified by an ethnicity.
    Every paper towed the party line,hardly any letters of opposition would make it past the editors desk,the so called ‘left wing’ politicians and academics shouted the same anti Serb slogans and waved the same banners as the rest of Nato. The Academics’ and war mongering interlectuals fell hook line and sinker for the medias disinformation campaign and stared dumbly at what a party in power wanted them to see,without questioning the sources.

    smtx01

    14/01/2011 at 13:25

  346. @modernity I have not had the time to check all the readers comments on this thread. Although I’m fairly sure I will have heard it all before, the same lies, the same one sided historical narative, the same blame game.
    They’l probably be saying next that The Croats,Albanians and Bosnian Muslims were fore runners of the Anti Nazi movement in Yugoslavia.

    smtx01

    14/01/2011 at 13:33

  347. smtx01,

    You are not engaging with my points, so I will elaborate:

    1) History is not media studies.
    2) History is about facts on the ground, what actually happened
    3) Irrespective of anything else, the events on the ground in former Yugoslavia should shape our views not some perception of the Western media.

    Again, the factual evidence in the former Yugoslavia should be the focus of any historical discussion, that’s where the *real* events occurred, the rest is secondary, if that.

    modernity

    14/01/2011 at 13:33

  348. @modernity ‘History is not media studies’.
    Unfortunately In the case of Yugoslavia it is all media studies.
    I shall read some of the comments upthread and try to ‘engage with some of the points’.

    smtx01

    14/01/2011 at 13:46

  349. PS: smtx01, if I made the time to read all the comments then it is extremely remiss of you not too.

    You are doing the posters a disservice by ignoring them and their considered contribution.

    I apologise for the inclusion of a few genocide deniers and those that wanted to openly push it (Erica Blair/Frunobulax), but in error I let their comments thru, mistakenly assuming that they would keep to my comments policy. They didn’t, and no longer post here as a result.

    modernity

    14/01/2011 at 13:50

  350. @smtx01

    Your reading comprehension is just as laughable as your ideology; I did not cite Friedman as a source.

    “Riley you mock the mis identification of victims.”

    No I mock little trolls like you who think that whining and crying about fictional massacres and conspiracies somehow substitutes for actual fact.

    “You have no clue what are you are talking about.”

    Are you familiar with something known as projection?

    “.The media carefully and methodically demonised the Serbs to the brink of oblivion,in almost every paper,from the Guardian to the Independent to the French l’Observateur, to the International Herald Tribune.”

    Reporting the actions of Serb fascists does not equal “demonization” this is how the armchair chetnik brigade sees things; any attack on some Serbs equals an attack on Serbs.

    “all these papers began using vile grotesque caricatures in a manner reminiscent of Nazi propaganda. These cartoons depicted Serbs as genocidal baby killers,as pigs crawling out of sewers,as monkeys not yet evolved, as drunken barbarians.”

    Once again projection; the ‘movement’ you are defending has nazi roots, this mirrors the Serb fascist policy of labeling anyone opponent as an ‘Ustasha’ (despite the Chetnik history of collaboration with the Ustase).

    “Similary the photos published in the Financial Times depicting the ‘grim reality of Serbias ethnic cleansing policy’,actually depicted a Serbian woman sitting amongst the ruins of one of the 50 demolished villages in Srebrenica.The same is true of the photo of a paramilitary soldier,headlined as ‘A Serb’,although his insignia clearly identified him as a Croat Ustasha.”

    Even if that is true (I don’t exactly have very much faith in you) those are minor errors, besides who demolished those villages? The starving Bosniak refugees armed with a few hunting rifles? Or the Serb army?

    “Serb victims of ethnic cleansing were either misidentified as another ethnicity or not identified by an ethnicity.”

    I already covered this.

    “Every paper towed the party line,hardly any letters of opposition would make it past the editors desk,the so called ‘left wing’ politicians and academics shouted the same anti Serb slogans and waved the same banners as the rest of Nato.”

    This is an example of the insanity of Serbian nationalism; they think that the media’s reporting on Chetnik atrocities only proves that there was a vast media conspiracy and that Karadzic’s scumbags were the “real victims.”

    “The Academics’ and war mongering interlectuals fell hook line and sinker for the medias disinformation campaign and stared dumbly at what a party in power wanted them to see,without questioning the sources.”

    The official Western policy in Southeast Europe benefited the Serb fascists; the arms embargo stacked the deck in favor of your favorite scumbags. And please warmongering? That’s an amusing example of hypocrisy coming from an apologist for Serbian nationalism.

    Riley

    14/01/2011 at 13:51

  351. @Modernity

    I thought this blog doesn’t allow fascists to post? Why is smtx01 allowed to spam this discussion with bull**** that has been debated to death already?

    Riley

    14/01/2011 at 13:54

  352. @riley Operation storm was not ethnic cleansing the authorities of the Serb Republic of Krajina evacuated the population’.
    Not ethnic cleansing?
    170,000 local Serbs were forced to flee their homes,those that were not killed,walked on foot,by horse drawn carriage or cars to Belgrade,but thats ok, thats not ethnic cleansing,no need to turn their plight into a ‘moral issue’ for the media, they’re just Serbs. When Bosnian Muslim government forces routinely raided rural Serb villages,committing all kinds of war crimes,that doesn’t really matter, theyre just Serbs,Naser Oric,suspected of burning over 200 Serb villages and brutally murdering Serbs in raids around Srebenica was described as ”A charismatic 25 year old policeman, and the brutal raids. described as ‘successful.’

    smtx01

    14/01/2011 at 13:58

  353. Ah good, back to stormfront with them.

    Riley

    14/01/2011 at 13:58

  354. Riley,

    smtx01 has been a poster for sometime.

    I might disagree with her views, but she’s NOT a fascist or anything close to it.

    Might I suggest a little bit more civility on you part?

    Whilst I disagree with her take on matters it doesn’t help your case to make it personal.

    Argue with her arguments, not her supposed “character”. Please.

    modernityblog

    14/01/2011 at 14:02

  355. “Not ethnic cleansing?
    170,000 local Serbs were forced to flee their homes,those that were not killed,walked on foot,by horse drawn carriage or cars to Belgrade,but thats ok, thats not ethnic cleansing,no need to turn their plight into a ‘moral issue’ for the media, they’re just Serbs.”

    Did you read what I posted? Milisav Sekulic a member of the Krajina Serb general staff clearly states that they evacuated the population thus it wasn’t ethnic cleansing. Besides the Krajina entity was founded upon the ethnic cleansing of Croats.

    “When Bosnian Muslim government forces routinely raided rural Serb villages,committing all kinds of war crimes,that doesn’t really matter”

    The raids were conducted on militarized bases in order to obtain food and defend themselves; only a deranged lunatic with an inflated sense of victimhood would call such actions “war crimes” but at least you can admit that you think it’s a crime when victims fight back.

    “that any criminal responsibility of Naser Orić was offset by the real and present necessity to acquire food for the survival of the population of Srebrenica. Having recognised that the defence of necessity was an established principle in customary international law in 1992 and 1993, the Trial Chamber considered the extraordinary humanitarian circumstances in Srebrenica at the time. It thus found that there was abundant evidence that Srebrenica was isolated, that the starving population was drastically increasing with the influx of refugees and that there had been repeated calls for help.”

    http://www.icty.org/x/cases/oric/cis/en/cis_oric_en.pdf

    “Naser Oric,suspected of burning over 200 Serb villages and brutally murdering Serbs in raids around Srebenica was described as ”A charismatic 25 year old policeman, and the brutal raids. described as ‘successful.’”

    Once again total fiction designed to blame the victims.

    “First of all, the OTP is always very careful in the use of the word ‘victim’. Military or Police casualties from combat should not be considered victims in a criminal investigation context, in the same way people are victims from war crimes, such as summary executions. Before speaking about the whole area of Podrinja, including at least the municipalities of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica and Skelani, I would comment on the various figures circulating around the Kravica attack of January 1993. The figures circulating of hundreds of victims or claiming that all 353 inhabitants were “virtually completely destroyed” do not reflect the reality…. For the whole region, i.e the municipalities of Srebrenica, Bratunac, Vlasenica and Skelani, the Serb authorities claimed previously that about 1400 people were killed due to attacks committed by the B&H Army forces for the period of May 1992 to March 1995, when Srebrenica was under the control of Naser Oric. Now the figure has become 3,500 Serbs killed. This figure may have been inflated. Taking the term “victims” as defined previously, these figures just does not reflect the reality.”

    http://www.un.org/icty/briefing/2005/PB050706.htm

    “”The allegations that Serb casualties in Bratunac, between April 1992 and December 1995 amount to over three thousand is an evident falsification of facts. The RDC research of the actual number of Serb victims in Bratunac [just outside of Srebrenica] has been the most extensive carried out in Bosnia and Herzegovina and proves that the overall number of victims is three to nine times smaller than indicated by Serbia and Montenegro. Perhaps the clearest illustration of gross exaggeration is that of Kravica, a Serb village near Bratunac attacked by the Bosnian Army on the morning of Orthodox Christmas, January 7, 1993 . The allegations that the attack resulted in hundreds of civilian victims have been shown to be false. Insight into the original documentation of the Army of Republika Srpska (VRS) clearly shows that in fact military victims highly outnumber the civilian ones. The document entitled ‘Warpath of the Bratunac brigade’, puts the military victims at 35 killed and 36 wounded; the number of civilian victims of the attack is eleven…”

    http://www.idc.org.ba/project/the_myth_of_bratunac.html

    “”The ultra-nationalist Serbian Radical Party launched an aggressive campaign to prove that Muslims had committed crimes against thousands of Serbs in the area. The campaign was intended to diminish the significance of the July 1995 crime, and many in Serbia were willing to accept that version of history. But as the Oric judgment makes clear, the facts do not support the equivalence thesis. Take the events in the village of Kravica, on the Serb Orthodox Christmas on January 7, 1993, for example. The alleged killing of scores of Serbs and destruction of their houses in the village is frequently cited in Serbia as the key example of the heinous crimes committed by the Muslim forces around Srebrenica. In fact, the Oric judgment confirms that there were Bosnian Serb military forces present in the village at the time of attack. In 1998, the wartime New York Times correspondent Chuck Sudetic wrote in his book on Srebrenica that, of forty-five Serbs who died in the Kravica attack, thirty-five were soldiers. Original Bosnian Serb army documents, according to the ICTY prosecutor and the Sarajevo-based Center for Research and Documentation of War Crimes, also indicate that thirty-five soldiers died. The critics also invoke unreliable statistics. A spokesman for the ruling Democratic Party of Serbia in the wake of the Oric judgment, for example, claimed that “we have documents showing that 3,260 people were found dead around Srebrenica from 1992-1995.” However, the book Hronike nasih grobalja (Chronicles of Our Graveyards) by the Serb historian Milivoje Ivanisevic (the president of the Belgrade Centre for Investigating Crimes Committed against the Serbian People), uses the significantly lower figure, of “more than 1,000 persons [who] died,” and contains the list, mostly made of men of military age. Among those killed, there were evidently a significant number of Bosnian Serb soldiers who died in the fighting, like in Kravica.”

    http://hrw.org/english/docs/2006/07/12/serbia13761.htm

    There is one problem with your racist fiction; reality.

    Riley

    14/01/2011 at 14:12

  356. The eleven ‘civilians’ who were killed cannot be considered to be victims of a massacre since they belonged to the village guards.

    “….the village guards were backed by the VRS [Bosnian Serb Army], and following the fighting in the summer of 1992, they received military support, including weapons and training. A considerable amount of weapons and ammunition was kept in Kravica and Šiljkovići. Moreover, there is evidence that besides the village guards, there was Serb and Bosnian Serb military presence in the area.”
    -Oric judgment

    Riley

    14/01/2011 at 14:15

  357. Modernity, I sympathise with Riley. This Serb victimhood business may have been just about understandable in the early postwar period when Serbians hadn’t had a chance to find out how RTS and the rest of the Serb media had been deceiving them but any Serb who wanted to has had plenty of time to engage with reality and find out why the world “demonises” these people who are unable to take responsibility for the monstrosities done in their name. If this self-indulgent woman dares call people like Penny Matthews, Ian Williams and Ed Vulliamy vultures for revealing what happened at Omarksa and in the other Prijedor camps she deserves whatever epithets head her way. I’m not ignoring what other Serbs suffered, let’s hear and be respectful of their stories, but who is going to listen to someone like smtx01 speak on their behalf? They are in sore need of an honest advocate who will explain honsetly how all sides did suffer while at the same time accepting that the side that was “demonised” was not “demonised”, it was rightly held accountable for the great mass of the most appalling atrocities. Can I recommend smtx01 reads the latest post at Srebrenica Genocide Blog reproducing a 1999 article by Ed Vulliamy?

    Owen

    14/01/2011 at 16:50

  358. modernityblog

    14/01/2011 at 16:59

  359. The expression ‘ethnic cleansing’ should be avoided by democrats in general and scholars in particular, but unfortunately it is now part of the lexicon on all languages that I know.

    I’m not going to extend myself by tracing the origins and evolution of the expression, but it is important to understand what is ethnic cleansing in order to define the evacuation of Krajina of its Serb population in 1995 as ethnic cleansing.

    Unlike in the case of the Bosniaks in Bosnia in several locations, what happened in Krajina was that the leadership of the statelet created there by the Serbian nationalists of SDS decided that, upon the imminence of the offensive of the Croatian army (operation storm), the Serbian population should abandon the territory. The exodus was thus organised, and the military and para-military Serb forces abandoned the region. This may have prevented a lot of people from getting killed, in case the Serb leadership had decided to go to battle with the Croatian army. However, it is not likely that such decision was carried out in order to protect the lives of the Serbs. The behaviour of the Serb nationalist leadership, both in Croatia and in Bosnia, throughout the war, clearly shows that there was little concern with individual lives of the Serbs, which should submit themselves to the great collective goal of secession. The statement of Biljana Plavsic that the Serbs were a people of 12 million and if 6 million had to die for the cause, it would be worth is representative of such collectivistic ideology.

    That these people were noting but pieces on a chess game for the Serb leadership is also attested by the attempt to settle them in Kosovo as a way to reinforce the Serbian demographic weigh then.

    Similarly, when the stipulations of the Dayton Peace Agreement were implemented in the area of Sarajevo, in the beggining of 1996, the Serbian population which remained in areas that were to be placed under the Federation (the Bosniak-Croat majority entity) were either lured with promises in order to re-settle in RS or intimidated, even forced to leave, including by having their houses set on fire.

    In the case of Krajina, the murder of many of those Serbs who remained behind is retrospectively interpreted as a confirmation of what the Serb population might have felt were the Croatian intentions, but it can also be a case of self-fulfilling prophecy. Be it as it was, it is a fact that for a long time the Croatian authorities did nothing to create an environment which would encourage the Serbs to return. In the case of the Federation of BH, nothing was done to prevent the Serbs from leaving, nor could they have done anything in fact, since only after the Serbs left they got the control of those areas. Regarding the return process, the Serbs were able to claim their property back, and even war criminals that used the towers in Grbavica for sniper activities got their property back, and then sold it. The issue of property claims was mainly controlled by the international presence.

    On the other hand, RS has a policy seeking to attract the Croatian Serb refugees to resettle in its territory, above all in the Northwest, to reinforce the Serb presence there. And in both entities so called minority return has been discouraged in practice.

    Therefore, there has been a lot of demographic re-engeneering going on.

    But it was among the Serb leadership that this demographic re-engineering had the status of a political goal, as openly stated on the “6 strategic goals of the Serb people” approved by the Serb national assembly in Pale in 1992. The physical separation between Serbs and other peoples in Bosnia was carried out both by killing, terrorising and deporting the non-Serb population in the territories under Serb control, but also by promoting of forcing the exodus of Serbs from the areas that the Serb forces were unable to control or which had no strategic interest.

    This physical separation also became a goal of the Bosnian Croat leadership, in an attempt to carve out a piece for themselves. There were cases of abusive behaviour and serious violations of human rights of non-Bosniaks by Bosniak forces, such as in the area of Zenica, or in the persecution and murder of Serbs who were unable to leave Sarajevo before the war and were caught in the siege, but this was never a goal of the Bosniak leadership, but, especially in the case of Sarajevo, it was rather a reflex of the abuse of power on the ground, especially in the first phase of the war, when the Bosnian Army was not yet properly organized. This is not to say the Bosnian leadership is blameless, because more could have been done to prevent and punish such crimes. But the differences both in the intent, scale of violence and consistency of the actions is striking, if one compares the Bosniak and the Serb leadership

    Unfortunately, those who usually come up with the argument of the Krajina Serbs on the eve of operation storm either ignore these differences or conscientiously invoke the tragedy and misery of the krajina refugees as some kind of balancing act.

    Sarah Correia

    15/01/2011 at 00:30

  360. Yes, Modernity, your second URL is the right one, linking to the 11 January 2011 post.

    Owen

    15/01/2011 at 01:42

  361. Just who is in denial here? owen writes; ‘They(The Serbs) are in sore need of an honest advocate who will explain honestly how all sides did suffer,accepting that the side that was ”demonised” was not ”demonised”.

    What do you mean Not demonised?, Were you living in a parallel universe during the conflict?.
    Every broadsheet and tabloid published grotesque vile caricatures reminiscent of Nazi propaganda.They depicted Serbs as sub-human,as ‘non-people’,as pigs, as monkeys not yet evolved.as genocidal baby killers.They misidentified Serbian victims of ethnic cleansing.The media projected a ”hierarchy of victims” in which some were more deserving of attention and public outrage than others.The Serbs were quite noticably at the bottom of that hierachy.
    Riley is quite evidently in denial about Naser Oric, he describes the brutal raids on Serb villages as ‘total fiction’.
    Marko Hoare links to a comment that proclaims Naser Oric a hero. ‘Naser Oric was and is a hero,who in any normal assessment would be put alongside the brave men and women of the anti Nazi resistance movements’.
    I mean for goodness sake,how can readers call for an honest debate when they are themselves in denial.
    I’m fed up with Self appointed ‘Balkan experts’ pumping out their ‘liberal doses of anti-Serbian arsenic.
    Im suprised Marcus Tanner and his febrile imagination haven’t contributed to the debate.
    The conflict was cruel,vicious and particuarly bloody,but what contrasted this conflict, is that beside the brutal killing fields of war ,a spectacular battle was fought for the benign spectacle of the worlds media.Journalisim became a mockery,what was important to understanding the truth was rendered obsolete.
    The suffering of the Serbian people was minimised, ignored,shut out.
    Having demonised Milosevic,in the minds of the press,it was not too hard to therefore demonise the entire Serbian people.
    Misha Glenny,author of the Fall of Yugoslavia complained that, in the absence of any serious media discussion of why the Serbs were fighting,’The general impression is because they are stark,raving,mad,vicious,mean bastards’. anyone who thinks this is an exageration should go back and re read the way ‘award winning journalists described Bosnian Serbs.
    ‘Throughout the war over kosovo,journalists and others who asked akward questions were likely to find themselves treated as some kind of Fascist fifth columists by the authorities.George Robertson implied to the BBC radio’s Johen Humphries that his abrasive interviews would not have been tolerated during the Second World war.Cabinet Minister Clare Short commented that the ‘Outrageous critics of the Kosovo war effort were the ‘equivalent to the people who appeased Hitler.
    Nato has overseen the ethnic cleansing of vast areas of Yugoslavia of it’s indiginous Serbian and Roma population.
    Nato cried ‘humanity’ to cloak illegality and illogicality.They portrayed the bewildering chaos and tragedy of a complex tripartite conflict as the penultimate struggle between good and evil,they projected the contrived image of the good Muslim and Croats against the evil Serbs.
    people should never allow themselves to be a part of a process that de-humanises any group of people,to do so lessens our worth as human beings.

    smtx01

    15/01/2011 at 14:19

  362. “They depicted Serbs as sub-human,as ‘non-people’,as pigs, as monkeys not yet evolved.as genocidal baby killers.” – smxt01

    Fatuously wrong on 1, 2, 3, 4 – but I think you may be right on 5.

    Owen

    15/01/2011 at 21:07

  363. smtx01, do the locations Pionirska ulica and Bikavac mean anything to you? Unfortunately they in fact got very little reporting in the media in the UK at the time, and not much more even when it was commented that they were events that ranked high in the history of man’s inhumanity to man. If you really think the actions of Serbia and the Bosnian Serbs were demonised beyond what they deserved reflect on Visegrad and go and look at the last couple of entries at Visegrad Genocide Memories – http://genocideinvisegrad.wordpress.com/.

    Owen

    15/01/2011 at 21:21

  364. “If you really think the actions of Serbia and the Bosnian Serbs were demonised beyond what they deserved reflect on Visegrad and go and look at the last couple of entries at Visegrad Genocide Memories ”

    The use of sensationalist images is pretty much a “two can play at that game” kind of thing.

    http://cache2.asset-cache.net/xc/909695.jpg?v=1&c=IWSAsset&k=2&d=77BFBA49EF878921F7C3FC3F69D929FDE4AC46753363FF343AD35F428FA0B48C0A14FDF34D0303A5

    http://cache1.asset-cache.net/xc/909566.jpg?v=1&c=IWSAsset&k=2&d=77BFBA49EF878921F7C3FC3F69D929FDA43E8DF4F8F38E0A00D1C8037421A56125906F3FE8E6F3BC

    Asteri

    16/01/2011 at 00:54

  365. “If you really think the actions of Serbia and the Bosnian Serbs were demonised beyond what they deserved reflect on Visegrad and go and look at the last couple of entries at Visegrad Genocide Memories ”

    Its a two can play at that game kind of thing

    http://www.life.com/image/909566

    http://www.life.com/image/909695

    Asteri

    16/01/2011 at 01:13

  366. sorry, laptop malfunction, thought the first one didn’t go through.

    Asteri

    16/01/2011 at 01:36

  367. Smtx01

    You are the one who is truly in denial; you have ignored what I posted and continued to repeat your whining.

    “What do you mean Not demonised?, Were you living in a parallel universe during the conflict?.
    Every broadsheet and tabloid published grotesque vile caricatures reminiscent of Nazi propaganda.They depicted Serbs as sub-human,as ‘non-people’,as pigs, as monkeys not yet evolved.as genocidal baby killers.They misidentified Serbian victims of ethnic cleansing.”

    I’ve already why this argument is bull****; reporting the actions of death squads is not an attack on all Serbs, besides people like you present the Croats as Ustase, Albanians as criminals and Bosniaks as evil fundamentalist terrorists, so your argument is also hypocritical.

    “The media projected a ”hierarchy of victims” in which some were more deserving of attention and public outrage than others.The Serbs were quite noticably at the bottom of that hierachy.”

    The Serbs were not victims of genocide in the 1990s; the Bosniaks were, the fact that Serb nationalists and their apologists have resorted to photoshop tricks and lies about Oric “killing thousands” shows that Bosniaks were the main victims.

    “Riley is quite evidently in denial about Naser Oric, he describes the brutal raids on Serb villages as ‘total fiction’.”

    Ah projection! I posted multiple sources which confirm that Oric was not guilty of “brutal raids”, he only defended himself and people targeted for genocide, but to fight back in smtx01’s bizarre world is a “war crime” while anyone who puts Serb extremists in a negative light is “demonizing Serbs.”

    “I mean for goodness sake,how can readers call for an honest debate when they are themselves in denial.”

    What debate? You are not addressing what your opponents are actually posting you are merely repeating yourself.

    “I’m fed up with Self appointed ‘Balkan experts’ pumping out their ‘liberal doses of anti-Serbian arsenic.”

    Where did I claim to be a ‘Balkan’ expert?

    “The conflict was cruel,vicious and particuarly bloody,but what contrasted this conflict, is that beside the brutal killing fields of war ,a spectacular battle was fought for the benign spectacle of the worlds media.Journalisim became a mockery,what was important to understanding the truth was rendered obsolete.”

    *Yawns.*

    “The suffering of the Serbian people was minimised, ignored,shut out.”

    I’ve already covered this see above.

    “Having demonised Milosevic,in the minds of the press,it was not too hard to therefore demonise the entire Serbian people.”

    1. Milosevic demonized himself, besides your little tribe of apologists attempted to demonize Izetbegovic, so once again hypocrisy.

    2. I’ve already explained to you why the “demonizing Serbs” whining doesn’t work.

    “Misha Glenny,author of the Fall of Yugoslavia complained that, in the absence of any serious media discussion of why the Serbs were fighting,’The general impression is because they are stark,raving,mad,vicious,mean bastards’. anyone who thinks this is an exageration should go back and re read the way ‘award winning journalists described Bosnian Serbs.”

    Oh wait I have to “understand” why scumbags burned people alive, ran concentration camps and committed genocide? Besides how can you even call shooting at Sarejevo civilians from the safety of hills ‘fighting’? The word ‘fighting’ implies at least some sort of level combat. How would smtx01 react to a rant whining that any criticism of the Ustase is an “attack on all Croats” and that the Ustase “should be understood”?

    “‘Throughout the war over kosovo,journalists and others who asked akward questions were likely to find themselves treated as some kind of Fascist fifth columists by the authorities.”

    What nonsense, where did the secret tribunals where they were sentenced to burning at the stake take place?

    “George Robertson implied to the BBC radio’s Johen Humphries that his abrasive interviews would not have been tolerated during the Second World war.Cabinet Minister Clare Short commented that the ‘Outrageous critics of the Kosovo war effort were the ‘equivalent to the people who appeased Hitler.”

    So what? Robertson was voicing his opinion, that doesn’t prove an inquisition against criticism, he also has a point since the Serb assault on Kosova is comparable to the Nazi assault on the Sudetenland.

    “Nato has overseen the ethnic cleansing of vast areas of Yugoslavia of it’s indiginous Serbian and Roma population. Nato cried ‘humanity’ to cloak illegality and illogicality.”

    I’ve already explained why this argument is nonsense; but why let reality get in the way of your whining? The ‘indigenous’ argument is merely a ploy to justify the Serbian ethnic cleansing of Croats with the “they were there first so they take it” argument.

    “They portrayed the bewildering chaos and tragedy of a complex tripartite conflict as the penultimate struggle between good and evil,they projected the contrived image of the good Muslim and Croats against the evil Serbs.”

    I have replied to this hyperbole multiples times, besides you people portray it as a war of good Serbs vs. evil Muslim fanatics.

    “people should never allow themselves to be a part of a process that de-humanises any group of people,to do so lessens our worth as human beings.”

    If you weren’t tearing up at the thought of how noble you think you are, you would have noticed the typos in this post.

    Riley

    16/01/2011 at 02:53

  368. Asteri, as I am sure you were quite well aware, I wasn’t throwing around “sensationalist images”. I was following up my reference to smtx01’s nonsensical exaggerations about the media depiction of Serbs with a comment on her dismissal of the allegation of genocidal baby-killing.

    From previous exchanges I know you are not a fool. I am sure you know about the Pionirska ulica and Bikavac fires, and you know that when Milan Lukic was convicted for crimes in Visegrad including the two fires Judge Patrick Robinson commented that “In the all-too-long, sad and wretched history of man’s inhumanity to man, the Pionirska street and Bikavac fires must rank high”.

    In the two fires Lukic and his associates murdered between 120 and 160 elderly men, women and children, many children, including a two day old baby and the two boys in the two most recent posts at Visegrad Genocide memories. These are not sensationalist images, they are family photographs posted by VGM to memorialise those whose incinerated remains were subsequently disposed of.

    The images are those of the victims of documented crimes conducted in a genocidal campaign orchestrated by Biljana Plavsic, Branimir Savovic, head of the Visegrad Crisis Staff Committee, and Col. Ojdanic of the JNA. The military and civil authorities allowed Milan Lukic to run amok in Visegrad in order to eliminate the majority Bosniak population of Visegrad and secure the permanent control of a strategic location in the Serbified Drina Valley. Genocidal baby-killing was precisely what Milan Lukic went in for. And Lukic was protected by those for whom genocide had a purpose – protected even when having one bite of the cherry with Pionirska ulica he decided to have a rerun at Bikavac.

    I don’t go in for playing games involving throwing around decontextualised sensationalist images for effect. I wanted to remind smtx01 of crimes that she and apparently you choose to regard as devoid of any specific significance. If you want to see demonisation of Serbs in that rather than a straightforward reminder of reality and proven guilt, that’s your choice, and now I have a better idea of where you stand on the issue of the substance of guilt.

    Owen

    16/01/2011 at 15:55

  369. “Asteri, as I am sure you were quite well aware, I wasn’t throwing around “sensationalist images”. I was following up my reference to smtx01′s nonsensical exaggerations about the media depiction of Serbs with a comment on her dismissal of the allegation of genocidal baby-killing.”

    Owen, sensationalism isn’t necessarily a dirty trick its used for obvious reasons to create a sensation in the viewer, all war reporting is sensationalist. If you don’t think the [UK] media was demonising the Serbs, then remember the lurid and baseless storeys of how the Serbs were doing things like paying their soldiers bonuses to sniper children, or how Serb doctors were forcing Muslim women to give birth to dogs or even how they murdered Jill Dando over a Kosovo aid film.

    I remember some of the Yugoslav war era pretty well and there was a definite agenda of portraying one side as totally good and the other as totally evil. In about 1992 or 93 I met some Bosnian Serb refugees living in North London who escaped the burning of their village by Muslim forces, which I doubt got reported, while almost all the crimes committed against the Muslims was extensively documented and reported. If you’ve seen the 1996 film “Lepa sela lepo gore” you’ll see the Serbs are capable of portraying themselves negatively.

    Asteri

    16/01/2011 at 17:58

  370. Asteri, there were quite a lot of families in London and the rest of the UK whose sufferings were not reported because of the scale of what was inflicted upon them primarily as a result of the Serb/ian aggression. There was rather a lot of newsworthy unpleasant stuff being reported, thanks to the effectiveness of the Serb/ian campaign of strategic ethnic cleansing and genocide.

    You joke – to put it politely – when you claim that almost all the crimes committed against the Muslims were extensively reported. I knew someone from Brcko who fortunately escaped being killed but lost many friends at Serb hands. I never heard any mention of Brcko. When most of the victims were Muslims and the suffering of the vast majority wasn’t being reported it wasn’t all that strange that the genuine suffering of innocent Serbs was overlooked.

    But certainly we heard plenty about the melodrama of the eternal fate of the Serbs to suffer at others’ hands. The Serbs who were genuinely victims didn’t get too much of a look-in on the fairly extensive British media coverage of the Serb case as they were elbowed out by gob-smacked coverage of the completely-shameless-but-very-fluent-in-English Karadzic and Koljevic, propagandists like Srdja Trifkovic were busy baffling common sense with their articulate fantasies of Serb victimhood, Misha Glenny was warning us in his voice of impending doom how we had to understand Serb needs or else, Tory MPs were reminding us how much we owed to our loyal World War II allies and Pauline Neville-Jones was admonishing us how careful we had to be not to get tangled up with all these nasty Balkan goings-on that were too complicated for us to understand. I don’t remember North London being under news black-out at the time.

    The courageous Serbs whose honesty deserves our ear always get elbowed out by mouthpieces for propaganda and self-defence. They’re the people I’d rather listen to, along with all the rest of the people treated as collateral damage by the Greater Serbs.

    Owen

    16/01/2011 at 20:19

  371. And by the way, the rumours of Jill Dando being assassinated by a Serb hitman, quite a long time after the Bosnian war, had to do with her fronting the Disasters Emergency Committee appeal for the Kosovo/a refugee crisis in 1999, when yet more ex-Yugoslavian civilians were on the receiving end of Serbian ethnic cleansing. Understandably there was speculation, that was stoked up when Michael Mansfield – who defended Barry George – turned up a report that said that Arkan had put out a contract on John Birt after the Belgrade TV station was bombed, so Birt’s security was stepped up. Jill Dando would have been an easier high-profile revenge target. Are you seriously saying that we shouldn’t imagine the likes of Arkan, Legija, etc. being capable of something like that? Everything is unsubstantiated anti-Serb prejudice?

    As a result, the target was supposedly changed to Miss Dando, who had fronted a TV aid appeal for Kosovar refugees.

    Police have interviewed one individual present at the alleged confession at the Portobello bar in Belgrade.

    Owen

    16/01/2011 at 20:37

  372. I vaguely remember Srdja Trifkovic being interviewed on Newsnight and other programs, he was pretty much always the token ‘controversial’ guest they have on those sorts of programs, Misha Glenny is a well respected author, the others didn’t seem to make much difference, there on the lesser extreme of people on the right and faux left, always boring on about who much the world owes to the US and so on. For every one of those there were five more saying the opposite.

    I wasn’t joking about Muslim crimes being extensively documented, I meant now with web sites like VGM and SGB. Another thing is the crimes the Croats committed against the Muslims were little reported except the shelling of the Stari Most, because the Croats were also the poor victims of the Serbs. Speaking of which, last year the Croatian PM (a former BBC journalist) condemned the president for apologising for what Croatia did to the Bosnian parliament, as usual to her and others the issue should of been about Serbian crimes and how wonderful Croatia is.

    “Are you seriously saying that we shouldn’t imagine the likes of Arkan, Legija, etc. being capable of something like that? ”

    I could believe they would contemplate doing it to one of their own journalists, but to kill a mere British TV presenter for revenge seems totally ludicrous, if they had you would think they would openly boast about it, to make everyone in the UK know that they were capable of doing something like that . Its as about as likely as the IRA plotting to assassinate Terry Wogan for presenting the Eurovision Song contest for Britain.

    http://flyingrodent.blogspot.com/2008/08/scaramouche-scaramouchehey-lets-shoot.html#links

    Asteri

    16/01/2011 at 21:53

  373. Asteri,

    Owen

    16/01/2011 at 22:39

  374. Asteri, as you know Srebrenica Genocide Blog was set up because the blog author was desperate about the lies and misinformation being circulated by Serb propagandists and Western apologists about Srebrenica. Visegrad Genocide Memories was set up because the author saw that that no-one apart from Visegrad’s Bosniak exiles was interested in what had happened in Visegrad. There are umpteen places in Bosnia that have never had the same courageous, articulate and persistent English-speaking Bosnians to tell the world what they endured and, particularly in Republika Srpska, often continue to endure.

    SGB and VGM are exceptional. But even they have succeeded in documenting only a small part of what happened in those two locations. And the point is that they did it themselves, out of the sense of desperation that they weren’t being heard. My own experience has been of the internet being dominated in many areas by Serb apologists and propagandists and their supporters, more interested in denying and challenging the truth about Srebrenica, Prijedor etc. than in talking about the experience of the Krajina Serbs in more than cursory detail. That was the case at least up until 2007, when the main object of the propaganda machine was achieved and the ICJ relieved Serbia of the threat of having to pay reparations. Since then a lot of the energy has gone from old battle-grounds like Wikipedia. You’ve obviously not given up and nor has smtx01, for which you’re due some respect, I guess.

    Owen

    16/01/2011 at 23:12

  375. “That was the case at least up until 2007, when the main object of the propaganda machine was achieved and the ICJ relieved Serbia of the threat of having to pay reparations. ”

    I might be prepered to believe that the ICJ found Serbia not guilty to put and end to the whole buissness, knowing Serbia one of Europes poorest countries could never pay it.

    Asteri

    17/01/2011 at 00:42

  376. Would never pay it, and would leave Bosnia, an even poorer country, to pick up the bill while Serbia continued nudging Bosnia towards destruction. How many tear-soaked handkerchiefs will Serbia insist on wringing out of us?

    Owen

    17/01/2011 at 01:18

  377. “Would never pay it, and would leave Bosnia, an even poorer country, to pick up the bill while Serbia continued nudging Bosnia towards destruction.”

    Bosnia’s present day problems with massive corruption and decent into oligarchydom are the fault of its own politicians and vice-royalty, tragic really, it didn’t have to be like that.

    If you haven’t seen it, watch Matthew Parish’s talk on youtube about the present state of Bosnia, its very enlightening.

    Asteri

    17/01/2011 at 14:40

  378. Parish believes that the only way of dealing with a problem like Dodik’s destructive intransigence is to give in and let him have what he wants, whatever the cost. Parish’s ” Republika Srpska: After Independence” is a manifesto for Dodik’s right to get on with whatever he wants in RS. He sees nothing wrong with consolidating the gains of genocide. Asteri, your notion of “enlightenment” is simply sideways support for the doggybag leftovers of the Greater Serbia project – lace-glove apologism but apologism for genocide all the same.

    Owen

    18/01/2011 at 00:03

  379. Actually Owen, rather than pointing to Parish’s interview about RS, I was referring to a talk he gave last year which provides valuable insights in to the mangled workings of the Bosnian protectorate. As for his views on RS, they can better described as Realpolitik rather than a apologia.

    Asteri

    18/01/2011 at 20:50

  380. Reply to the Anonymous and Unaccountable Moderator

    A consistent problem in addressing the substantive issues on Yugoslavia has been the conduct of the moderator, who has slanted the entire discussion in Hoare’s favor, and has violated his own rules of conduct in doing so.

    One example will suffice: On January 11, 2011, the moderator demanded that I “clarify” my views of the Srebrenica massacre, and answer a series of questions regarding the massacre. In reality, I had already addressed all of these points, not once but several times, throughout the course of the debate. In badgering me to repeat myself again and again on this issue, the moderator was in essence posing the classic courtroom question: “When did you stop beating your wife?” I am not interested in playing these games.

    Given the moderator’s conduct, I can well understand why he wishes to remain anonymous.

    Another problem has been the venomous often fanatical tone adopted by many of the posters to Modernityblog. This tone reminds me of the rhetoric I see emanating from right-wing extremist groups in the United States. I have had ample opportunity to view the latter at close range, from where I live in Tucson, Arizona.

    It is for the above reasons that I have dropped out of the debate on Modernityblog some time ago. However, I shortly will be writing a detailed response to the always error-prone Mr. Hoare, which will be posted to Louis Proyect’s website, http://louisproyect.wordpress.com.

    On my book, the anonymous moderator makes the following comment:

    “I suspect that over time Professor Gibbs’ book will be liberally torn apart, for its doubtful use of sources, misrepresentation of data, and speculative interpretations.”

    This certainly sounds like a courageous criticism – until you realize that the “critic” is not even willing to reveal his name.

    David Gibbs

    22/01/2011 at 14:48

  381. “A consistent problem in addressing the substantive issues on Yugoslavia has been the conduct of the moderator, who has slanted the entire discussion in Hoare’s favor, and has violated his own rules of conduct in doing so.”

    The moderator has not stifled your replies and he has violated his rules; by allowing your supporters to post here.

    “Given the moderator’s conduct, I can well understand why he wishes to remain anonymous.”

    What does that have to do with the debate?

    “Another problem has been the venomous often fanatical tone adopted by many of the posters to Modernityblog. This tone reminds me of the rhetoric I see emanating from right-wing extremist groups in the United States. I have had ample opportunity to view the latter at close range, from where I live in Tucson, Arizona.”

    If you are worried about extremist rhetoric why is that you do not have any objection to the nonsense posted by your supporters?

    “However, I shortly will be writing a detailed response to the always error-prone Mr. Hoare, which will be posted to Louis Proyect’s website, http://louisproyect.wordpress.com.”

    You mean the blog which contains the following racist comments about Bosnia?

    “In the latest issue of Links, Karadjis holds forth on the arrest of Radovan Karadzic, the Serb warlord who is held to be qualitatively worse than all the other warlords in Yugoslavia, including the Muslim Naser Oric whose anti-Serb pogroms near Srebrenica unleashed Karadzic’s bloodlust revenge.”

    Proyect presents Oric’s defensive and legitimate actions as ‘pogroms’ (which stems from the ‘serbs = Jews, Bosniaks = nazis’ racist argument) and basically blames the victims. I have already torn apart the myth of Oric committing massacres. Proyect also selectively quotes Izetbegovic’s book out of context in order to launch a crude attack on Izetbegovic, a classic tactic of Serb fascists. Leftists who whined about Izetbegovic being an “Islamic fundamentalist” engaged in hypocrisy wince they were and are staunch supporters of the Palestinian cause.

    “Perhaps the most obvious recent example of this is the wars in Yugoslavia, which have generated very little in the way of serious analysis except from Diana Johnstone or Edward Herman.”

    Proyect takes the scribblings of two genocide deniers seriously; apart from how both authors deny the Srebrenica genocide Johnstone has glorified the pro-Axis Chetniks and Herman has denied the Rwanda genocide.

    “Missing entirely from these accounts of the Srebrenica killings that most assuredly did take place (although to describe them as “genocide” is positively Orwellian) is the ratcheting up of tensions at the hands of Muslim militias.”

    What disgusting hyperbole, from someone who writes for a Maoist hate site. So you are defending your genocide denial on a hate site run by a living cartoon character who identifies as a Marxist; an ideology about as relevant as Bonapartism.

    Riley

    22/01/2011 at 16:38

  382. For anyone interested, here is the third part of my critique of Gibbs’s book, concerning the myth that Germany encouraged Croatia to secede from Yugoslavia:

    http://greatersurbiton.wordpress.com/2011/01/24/first-check-their-sources-3-the-myth-that-germany-encouraged-croatia-to-secede-from-yugoslavia/

    Marko Attila Hoare

    24/01/2011 at 13:13

  383. What a pompous ass David Gibbs comes across as. I asked him three questions, not unreasonable questions, in order to try and determine the substance of his position in relation to Srebrenica. But he doesn’t choose to clarify. Nor does he choose to deal with the criticism of his observation that the origins of the genocidal massacre at Srebrenica lay in the raids conducted by the defenders of the besieged enclave and not in the Strategic Objectives of the Bosnian Serb Assembly. A historian so picky and choosy that he reserves the favour of his disclosing his position to the followers of Louis Proyect is hardly demonstrating a determined commitment to the public justification of his opinions. When it comes to defending his take on historical events in the public forum the tenured professor has a lesson or two to learn from Marko Hoare’s robust willingness to face the music.

    Owen

    24/01/2011 at 15:25

  384. Owen, I think it’s unfair to slander the pompous asses of the world by associating them with Gibbs–most pompous asses I know have thicker skin and don’t respond to every criticism of their work with implicit threats.

    Why, indeed, does he need to know the name of the editor? Considering that earlier in this thread, he abruptly brought up Hoare’s parents by name, one might assume that Gibbs was making a veiled or implicit threat to get nasty and personal. What that says about Gibbs is not flattering.

    The narrow, deliberately ignorant world that Gibbs and Proyect live in is self-evident from such comments as: “Perhaps the most obvious recent example of this is the wars in Yugoslavia, which have generated very little in the way of serious analysis except from Diana Johnstone or Edward Herman.”

    Anyone with a library card and a rudimentary grasp of how to use OCLC WorldCat or any number of electronic journal databases will quickly come to see that there is an enormous amount of “serious analysis” of the Yugoslav wars out there–not merely the sometimes admittedly hyperbolic and/or tentative journalistic reporting from the period or subjective personal accounts or impassioned (and explicitly biased) polemics, but real, substantive scholarship and analysis from social scientists, historians, journalists, governmental experts, and others. And precious little, if any, of this substantive body of work supports the laughably shoddy and transparently disingenous garbage that only fools like Proyect take seriously.

    Gibbs prides himself on being a “full-time tenured professor” or however he put it. He should thank his lucky stars for that. Anybody who reponds to written criticism by lashing out with hysterical comments about “McCarthyism” and anti-immigrant hate speech would probably not do well in a job performance review.

    Kirk Johnson

    25/01/2011 at 17:57

  385. ‘Frunobulax’ is the pen name of John Mardaljevic, Reader in Daylight Modelling at De Montfort University.

    He has been fully exposed here:

    http://srebrenica-genocide.blogspot.com/2011/07/genocide-denier-john-mardaljevic-of-de.html

    Alex Zivanovic

    22/07/2011 at 15:56

  386. Indeed, exposed by an anonymous character assassin no less. Someone went to some lengths to ‘expose’ an anonymous poster on the internet, publishing his full name, email address, job description and irrelevant details of his professional life. I’m no legal expert but i’m sure that counts as, defamation, intimidation, harassment and invasion of privacy, can’t you be sued for that?

    Asteri

    30/07/2011 at 18:26

  387. Since this thread has been reopened after a long lull, I thought I would take the opportunity to return to the discussion about maps. I mentioned the map linked to above, http://www.rastko.rs/istorija/srbi-balkan/img/bosnia-karta2b.jpg, in my blog, http://rgallivan.blogspot.com/2011/07/croat-muslim-relations-in-bosnian-war.html . The map is usually used to advance Serb arguments, but in the case of Tuzla, it seems to be most advantageous to the Croats, as it shows that, even though they only made up 16% of the municipality’s pre-war population they were the dominant ethnic group across 150 square kilometres or nearly 50% of Tuzla municipality, when it is divided into its ‘settlements’, against 30% for the Muslims and 20% for the Serbs. The Croats have sought their own separate municipality, ‘Soli’, to be separated from Tuzla, as happened with ‘Usora’ in Tesanj. When settlements across all municipalities in Bosnia are considered the map shows Serbs as the biggest ethnic group in 50% of the country, Muslims in 30% and Croats in 20%. I think any discussion of whether Bosnia should be partitioned and if so how would have to give due weight to this map.

    The contribution linked to above,http://srebrenica-genocide.blogspot.com/2010/03/karadzic-uses-misleading-ethnic-map-of.html, is not very helpful though. As far as I can see, it minimises the pre-war Serb population by assuming that no Serbs declared themselves as ‘Yugoslavs’ in 1991 and by pointing out that 10% of those who declared themselves as Serbs ‘were army officers and their families who came mostly from Serbia and Montenegro’, claiming that they ‘for the most part’ (but not all) returned to Serbia and Montenegro, but then knocking 10% off their population all the same.

    Rory Gallivan

    01/08/2011 at 15:10


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