discussion

Dear FRONTLINE,

Once again, you have presented a horribly one-sided account of the war in the former Yugoslavia! If we are to form an educated opinion on the crises in the region, we should be given the story from all sides. I expect to see similar exposes on the extremist Croatian leader Franjo Tudjman and Muslim leader Alija Izetbegovic who along with Karadjic and Milosevic helped "rekindle" the hatred among all the ethnic groups in the area. Only then may we begin to understand why the Serbs were so afraid of living in a Croatian and/or Muslim dominated state. All politicians are liars and cheats. They do not only come in the form of a Serb.

Chicago, Illinois

Dear FRONTLINE,

The world stood by and watched while Karadzic and Mladic supplied militarily and financially by Milosevic slaughtered unarmed civilians. The world forgot the lessons of World War II and the motto "NEVER AGAIN!" To make matters worse they, by the means of an arms embargo, even inhibited the democratic Bosnian government comprised of Serbs, Croats, and Bosniaks/Muslims in its attempts to protect its own people and land. The world should be ashamed!!!

P.S.

I can't believe that people want to spread propaganda put out by Karadzic in insisting that both sides were equally responsible. Don't be stupid, the American people can see through it!!!

Ja Sam
Miami, Florida

Dear FRONTLINE,

There have been so many tiresome lies about this war, and your Frontline show tonight repeated some of them. The biggest one is the "Marketplace Massacre" which you are attributing to a serb mortar shell. This is not true. I would recommend reading 11/11/94, and 8/1/95 New York times articles in which that massacre was determined to be a ground detonation, probably a car bomb, from crater analysis, and cameras were there and ready to take pictures immediately. Much of the sniping of civilians was found to be the work of the Bosnian Government, by independent UN and French Military investigations. When will the lies stop? The truth is there for those who care to look, and i would advise all americans to find it before condemning people to death at the hands of our bombers and forced treaties, and allocating blame. Nothing less should be expected of true journalists, or you become mere purveyors of propaganda, with people unjustly losing their lives as a result.

Michael Avery
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Dear FRONTLINE,

As a network that purports to "educate" its viewers, your "Frontline" program demonstrates the politically-motivated ignorance in the "well-meaning" international community that has helped to destroy the former Yugoslavia and prevent any true reconciliation between the former Yugoslav peoples except at the point of NATO's gun.

You present the dramatic footage of the Kosevo hospital after it was shelled but do NOT show the Bosnian Muslim troops on the hospital's roof who were themselves shelling the Serbs .

You present horrifying footage of the Markale Breadline Massacre but do not interview or discuss the opinions of the many explosives experts and UN military personnel who have publicly expressed the beliefs that the tragedy was perpetrated by Bosnian Muslim forces.

You interview Bosnian Muslim women from Srebrenica who have been wronged but fail to interview the thousands of Bosnian Serbian women living in the nearby hamlets surrounding Srebrenica who lost their children and husbands to Nasir Oric's maurauding Muslim bands of monsters who would attack from the so-called "safe haven" of Srebrenica.

In your focus on blaming only the Serbs for this tragic civil conflict, you fail to show the massacres of Bosnian Muslims by Bosnian Croat forces and by regular Croatian forces. Mostar one focal point of the Muslim/Croat conflict - not Sarajevo is the most destroyed city in Bosnia and has resisted any efforts to reintegrate. You also fail to mention that ethnic Serbs are the most ethnically cleansed population in all of Europe with over 1.2 million refugees.

By focussing on only Karadzic as an indicted war criminal, we give the other war criminals e.g. Franjo Tudjman, Alija Izetbegovic, Mate Boban, Tomislav Mercep, Nasir Oric, etc., etc., etc. who exist amongst all of the ethnic groups of the former Yugoslavia a free hand to continue terrorizing innocent civilians and merely postpone revenge. We also make Karadzic a martyr. How is that supposed to bring peace to this historically tortured land?

Michael Pravica
Cambridge, Ma.

Dear FRONTLINE,

While all sides in this tragic conflict committed atrocities, the Serbs seem to have been the most guilty and unremoresful. What I find very disturbing is that Karadzic seems to take no resposibility for the actions of his "soldiers" and even claims that the non-Serbs actually shelled their own people so as to get sympathy for their own cause. That is really sick and sad.

L Schneider
Chicago, IL

Dear FRONTLINE,

Relentless exposure by the world press finially forced the UN and NATO to intervene in Bosnia and stop a terrible civil war. But for over a decade a much larger war has raged, with scarcely a mention in the world press and not one live video feed. The war in the southern Sudan is the largest ongoing conflict in the world today. The weapons in this war include famine, genocide, and even slavery. Yet there is no pressure on the world powers even to impose economic sanctions against the govenment that is prosecuting the conflict, and virtually all aid is funnelled through Kartoum, seat of that very government, which siphons off the better part of the aid supposedly going to the very people it would like to subjugate.

Why is such a huge tradgedy ignored in the US? Because it's so dangerous to go there? No doubt, but occassional intrepid BBC reporters have filed stories from southern Sudan. Recently a columist for a major newspaper told me something incredible; that his paper wasn't interested in the story because it would anger Louis Farrakan, who vehemently supports the Islamic government in Kartoum.

Frontline has covered difficult stories the world over. A war that has raged for over a decade and left 1.5 million dead should finaily see the light of day, regardless of whose ox is gored. Only then, with luck, will the world force it to e brought to an end.

Dan Woodard
Merritt Island, FL

Dear FRONTLINE,

I was deeply interested in tonight's broadcast. I was stationed in Bosnia between April 1997 and October 1997 as an Armor Platoon Leader in the United States Army. I do not understand why so little was talked about in the riots that ensued after the confrontation between Madam Plasovic and Radovan Karadzic. Many small heroic stands between U.S. Soldiers and Karadzic rioters took place over those intense weeks. Both my unit and myself saw the aftermath of these riots by setting up checkpoints and stopping the buses as they returned from Banja Luka to Pale. Most were tired and wanted to return home. Some were still angry and small clashes erupted. It was only when force was displayed did the crowd subside and return to their buses. Thankfully neither harm came to soldiers or rioters. All incidents ended peacefully.

When I observed both sides, the Federation and Republic of Serbska, they only seemed to know violence. If the people talked to us on our patrols, they would like talk about our weapons and what they did in the war. It was difficult not to blame them. Television does not do the destruction of Bosnia justice. When you look at the remains of a certain Muslum schoolyard, no longer inhabited by anyone, you can see the indentions left by a Serbian Tank as it pulled alongside into the school yard playground, and randomly shot holes into the building, the distance was less the 20 feet. I was not there when it happened, I do not know if the school was occupied at the time, I only saw the evidence of a crime.

If you look into their eyes, the old or the young, you will see a hollowness, emptyness and hatred. This war will not soon be forgotten or forgiven anytime in the near future.

Damian Marquith

Dear FRONTLINE,

This conflict has been on-going since the sixth century. Why is it our business to interfere now?

Ivan Milchin
New York, New York

Dear FRONTLINE,

The program made me look back at this period of bloodshed and think of how we all knew full well the atrocities going on in this country; yet we were so concerned with our mundane lives, and didn't want to get involved in a conflict so far away. So many of us feel that we would never let another WWII like genocide to occur again, yet we did just that. Seems that history is determined to repeat itself regardless of the enlightened state a people think they may be at.

Robert Donovan
Boston, Ma

Dear FRONTLINE,

I think it was a crime for the rest of the world to wait so long to intervene to bring peace. If the same rational the Serbs used to attack their neighbors, past aggression, then any non-native person linving anywhere in the world shoud be wiped out.

Penney Morse
Milwaukee, WI

Dear FRONTLINE,

Once again, your propaganda machine gets into high gear. You would have us believe that Karadzic and his henchmen were personally responsible for all the carnage of the war. Get real, folks. There were atrocities made by both sides. Next time you try to explore the nature of war, try to be a little more balanced in your presentation, and don't try to convince us that the United Nations is our last great hope for peace in that region.

Richmond, Maine

 


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