From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Thu Sep 20 2001 - 08:58:39 MDT

On Date: Wed Sep 19 2001 - 18:36:52 MDT wrote:
>We're getting a lot of stuff forwarded here lately. It's interesting to
>read the varied perspectives, but much of it is of questionable quality.
>I wish people would add some commentary or something to put it into
>perspective. It was very helpful to learn that that one paranoid guy
>was a believer in UFOs.

Sadly, I've been having problems with my ISP, so I've not been able to more
actively participate here.

>I looked at this Chronicles magazine website. It is published by a
>religious, right-wing, Christian think tank. They appear to be very
>hostile to Islam. I gather from the quoted article that they objected
>to the U.S. support for Muslims and opposition to the Serbs in the
>Balkan conflict.

They are, though does this preclude them from knowing something or having a
valid perspective? I think not. For instance, the piece I sent that you're
commenting on makes the following:

1. The CIA supported Osama bin Laden during the 1980s (to help the Aghanis
rebel against the Soviets).

2. Osama bin Laden supplied weapons to Muslims in the Balkans in the early

3. Osama bin Laden issued 'a communiqué in August 1998 listing Serbia among
"the worst infidel

4. The regime in Bosnia has been and is friendly toward Islamic militants,
with that area being a hub for terrorist activities. (The writer cites The
New York Times Magazine 2000 February 6 -- not known for being right wing.)

5. In 1998, the US State Dept. went from listing the KLA as terrorist group
to not being one. How many terrorist groups do you know that have been

>As I recall events, international aid organizations spent months trying
>to build public awareness of the mistreatment by Muslims at the hands
>of Bosnian Serbs. I thought it was courageous for the U.S. to oppose
>the European group that we have more cultural ties with and support the
>more foreign Muslims.

At the time, the atrocities commited by the Croatians and Bosnian Muslims
were quietly ignored, as was the history of the region. The Serbs did not
have a good PR team. The Croatians and Bosnian Muslims did. This is not to
whitewash the Serbs, but no side in the Yugoslav civil war was clean. This
fact alone should have made it clear that the US and NATO should not have
gotten involved.

>In any case, the story being presented doesn't hang together all that
>well. We were supporting bin Laden as recently as 1998? Would he really
>hate the U.S. so much if so? Would he have been targeting car bombs at
>American soldiers when they were fighting on his side against the Serbs?

The claim in the article is not that the US was supporting him in 1998, but
that the basic policy in Washington was to ignore his connections to the KLA
and other Muslim groups in the Balkans. As for the car bomb, I don't know.
The writer states:

"They first attracted attention when on December 18, 1995--only a month
Dayton--a car bomb prematurely exploded in the central Bosnian town of
Zenica. It was apparently meant for American troops stationed nearby, as
revenge for the sentencing of Sheik Omah Abdel Rahman in connection with the
World Trade Center bombing."

In other words, that happened in 1995 -- not 1998. The timing might mean
he's right, though I think it's more speculative.

>It's hard to pick out the nuggets of truth in an article which is
>published by a magazine with an explicit anti-Muslim bias.

I think I just did. The above claims are factual and, with the exception of
number 4, can be empirically verified. This does not mean that Trifkovic is
correct in all he says, but, at least, you need not dismiss him because of
his biases.

Also, even though _Chronicles_ general stance is
anti-anything-that-isn't-Christian, remember they offer good reasons for US
disengagement from the Middle East. They do _not_ advocate, e.g., support
for Israel or bombing Afghanistan. That alone should make you think they
are about to think around some of their biases.


Daniel Ust

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