Serbia Needed Say

In September, The New York Times ran a piece on Europe’s failure to arrest the Serbian general Ratko Mladic, “Europe’s most wanted war-crimes suspect.” For sheer vicious anti-Serb prejudice, the  key words in the story say it all: “mass murder,” “massacre of 8,000 Muslims,” “wartime horrors,” “killing of 3,500 children, men and boys who were led to killing fields,” “war crimes,” “genocide,” “massacre.”
American governments have spread so many lies about Serbia that it’s little wonder the truth is not even a thought, much less devoutly to be wished for. Serbia never had its say and it was the truth that was raped, not Croatian or Muslim women.
When the scales first fell from my eyes, I thought it was all about the failure to present the Serbian side during the carnage accompanying Yugoslavia’s breakup. I wondered why the Croat and Muslim side was the only one presented, ultimately becoming the basis of U.S. government policy. If the Croat side was “right,” why was the Serb side “wrong?”  But there appeared to be no Serb side at all – no Serbian say – not even one to inveigh against.  Then, after the wars, I thought it was all about fabrication, falsity and fraudulence in the oddly glossy presentation of the newly formed Serbian government of “pro-west democratic reformer” Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic. Now it’s years later and I’ve learned a lot.
Some of the truths:
The most ethnically cleansed country in the world is Croatia, which was falsely portrayed as the luckless victim of the inhuman Serbs. The fact is that Croatia got rid of almost all the Serbs who lived in Croatia – over 700,000 of them.  On the Serbian “Trail of Tears”  that few in the United States know about, hundreds of thousands of Serbs were expelled from Croatia. The “Trail of Tears” was not only planned and carried out with the approval of the Clinton administration, but a retired American army officer coordinated it.

The Serbs allegedly raped forty thousand Muslim women. This was a barefaced lie. “Where,” someone asked, “are the children from these heinous acts? I would like to adopt some.” Good question. No answer.

Zoran Djindjic, the assassinated Serbian prime minister with the Mafia connection, was a criminal who succeeded another criminal, Slobodan Milosevic. But Djindjic, in addition to being a more polished and cultured criminal than Milosevic, was 100 percent in cahoots with Washington, as Milosevic was not, and was thus given the green light to do anything he wanted.  Washington conferred on him the distinguished label of “pro-western reformer,” which has the same cachet in Washington nowadays as “anti-communist” had in the days of the Cold War. The current Serb president is likewise referred to approvingly by the West as pro-Western.

Prime Minister Djindjic “sold” Slobodan Milosevic to The Hague Court for $5 million American dollars. Right under then-President Vojislav Kostunica’s outraged nose.

When Djindjic, the willing accomplice of the West, became Serbian prime minister in January 2001, he insisted that there was no Mafia in Serbia. But one day, shortly after Kostunica became president, Djindjic called Kostunica into his office.  “I want you to meet someone special.” Djindjic said. The “someone special” was a notorious Mafia drug dealer who had given Djindjic the go ahead to organize elections and overthrow Milosevic.

Why was it that none of this “got out” to the public?  I recently learned that the Serbian community in the United States had indeed tried to hire a public relations firm to get out their story. But none was willing to accept them as clients. Finally, Powell Tate, a Washington public relations firm, agreed to represent the Serbian group and took $50,000 down on a $250,000 yearly retainer fee. But the next week, Powell Tate returned the money and said it could not represent the Serbs. By all accounts, the Serbian group was up against the powerful firm of Ruder Finn, which was putting a murderous anti-Serb spin on the story on behalf of their Croatian, Bosnian and Muslim clients. The public relations juggernaut that laid the propaganda foundation for the bombing and killing in Serbia portrayed the complex Yugoslavian situation in scandalously simple terms of good guys and bad guys. The use of highly charged words straight out of World War II, like “genocide”, “ethnic cleansing”, “mass murder” and “concentration camps”, deliberately evoked images of Nazi Germany and the gas chambers of the death camps. The public relations campaign consciously attempted to make people come to the wrong conclusion. Of course that’s what public relations firms often do. But it isn’t what governments are supposed to do. If people do not notice the dishonesty, subtle use of highly charged buzzwords, lack of verifiable evidence, misleading images, and wild allegations that can’t be disproved, it is probably a good public relations campaign. But the devices that make for a good public relations campaign convert to vices when governments practice them. The policy of the United States government towards Serbia is knowingly based on the fictions and misrepresentations of the Ruder Finn public relations company. That’s why Serbia – and now Iraq and Afghanistan – is, for America, the story of fraying moral values at the highest government levels.


About judyjablow123

In my youth I was a world class tournament golfer. I earned an MA in history at NYU, after which I knew I had had enough of academia. I have remained a student of history. I have a strongly personal - almost entirely negative- take on the contemporary pharmaceutical and mental health industries. That was the impetus for my Bluepolar blog, which will also include stuff on sports, history and anything else that strikes my interest.
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9 Responses to Serbia Needed Say

  1. Great post. Liked it so much 🙂


  2. Nikole says:

    Rarely does anyone ask the questions you ask — Why is there no Serbian side. It’s often said that Serbians have too much faith that truth and justice will win out. I think that’s true of individual Serbs in general. On the other hand, why was it up to Americans in the diaspora to try to hire a public relations firm? Why doesn’t the current government support and defend its own? Being poor and disdained Serbia’s government is currying favour with its masters. I just noted that Tadic was paying respects to Croatian victims of the 1991-1992 war period. Nobody has paid respects to any Serb victims. Period. And that includes the death camp victims of World War 2 Jasenovac where 700,000 Serbs died with Jews and Gypsies. Serbs are told that it was ‘a long time ago’. Yes, it was. The Germans are still paying pensions to their own Jewish victims but Serbs are supposed to make friends with everybody while being called Nazis and Fascists. Anyway, thank you for your clear mindand brave words. You know that expressing your views wont win you many friends.


  3. Anna says:

    Thank you! I’ve passed this around to many people. And many thanks to Karl for bringing it to my attention.

    You have an analytical mind and a unique insight (unique because so few Americans, nay Westerners, have it) about the Balkans and. I can’t help wondering what it was that initially made you see the through the propaganda when so many others never did. Reading someone who can cut through to the truth is rare and heartwarming.


    • I’m sorry to say that I would never have seen through the propaganda myself. A Serbian neighbor “educated” me starting about 8 years ago. It took a while, but thank goodness I was able “to be got through to.” Thanks for your comment


      • George Bozic says:

        I love your neighbor… Please kiss them three times and send my warmest regards.

        I am that same “neighbor” that has to start with one person at a time. But if that’s what we got to do to fight off the empire of deceit, that’s what we got to do.
        Words can not accurately express how truly grateful I am for your work.


      • Thanks George,

        I’ve told my neighbor about the generous and heartfelt response to my blog on Serbia. I’ll forward your comment to him. I will post more pieces on Serbia. Gratitude works both ways, and mine goes to you too. -Judy


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