Re: Clinton, US citizen responsibility Vs Milosevic and Serbians

Brian D Williams (
Mon, 28 Jun 1999 11:09:19 -0700 (PDT)

From: Michael Wiik <>

>Well, I don't like Clinton much either. My most terrifying visage
>of Clinton is the scenes (I've seen 2 or 3 of them now) where Mr
>Bill is sitting at a table, surrounded by somber-faced police
>officials in full uniform, signing away yet another basic human

Isn't some group giving out the Orwell award for those who promote "Big Brother?" As I recall the award is a boot stomping on a human head...... Nasty, appropriate.... I nominate the jerk from Arkansas......

>Nonetheless, I wonder what is our collective (oh-oh)
>responsibility for this guy. When the US was bombing Serbia, they
>supposedly went to great lengths to avoid civilian casualties.
>But why? Isn't Milosevic their leader? Don't the Serbian people
>bear some responsibility for putting this guy in office?

>There was a Nightline show where Ted Koppel went to Belgrade and
>had a little lunchtime chat with some Serbs. They claimed that the
>US was deliberately targeting civilians. Ted made the point that,
>if that were the case, there would be hundreds of thousands of
>dead civilians. It was almost enough to make me think that the US
>should do at least one B-52 bombing run over Belgrade civilian
>housing, so they could say, 'See, this is what happens when we
>deliberately target civilians'. The US didn't seem to have much
>qualms about bombing Germans and Japanese civilians in WWII.

This is a big issue you've broached.

Part of the reason for the Serb attitude on this (IMMHO) is that people don't like ever thinking of themselves as wrong or bad. I think media play a big part in this which is why I think all media are valid targets in time of war ( The first casualty of war is truth). I would have concentrated on media on day 1.

Maybe we should develop the technology to broadcast our own signals into a country during these events. One would hope that the Internet might play a significant role in the future in presenting a non-governmental version of these events.

I agree it is particularly bizarre that any thinking person could imagine we were targeting civilians when it was completely clear we hit almost everything we aimed at.

Of course this also had negative effects, the bombing was so accurate that the accidental strike against the Chinese embassy was taken as a deliberate act. The bombing being more accurate than the intelligence.

As to targeting civilians, this is the first time bombing has been so accurate that it was reasonably possible to avoid them. In the Gulf war about 10% of munitions were guided, over 85% were in the recent Kosovo event.

I also never understood the concept of civilians anyway since as you pointed out in many cases they elected their leaders. A definite lack of personal responsibility.

I think something like the HEAP (holocaust education avoidance protocol) mentioned in Neal Stephanson's "Cryptonomicon" is worth considering.

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