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Monday, February 13, 2006

How Oliver Kamm Deals With The Evidence

Oliver Kamm purports to be a calm and ' objective' analyst. Yet how does he react when someone sends in material which contradicts his claim? It's simple- he merely says' There is no point in spamming me. I will simply delete it unread' .
The Kamm doctrine seems to be 'I can make whatever claims I like about anybody or anything, but don't you dare contradict them or (a) I'll write a letter of complaint to your comissioning editor or (b) I'll brush you off with a spam filter jibe. But Branka Josilo-Parry was not spamming Kamm. She was sending in material which challenges a claim he had made.
Will Kamm read the material and respond to Branka Josilo-Parry in the manner appropriate to a calm and 'objective' analyst? Or will he continue to do a very convincing impression of a man who seems frightened of
engaging in proper debate?

Begin forwarded message:
Date: 13 February 2006 10:13:39 GMT
To: "Branka Josilo-Perry"
Subject: RE: Fwd: Who bombed the markets in Sarajevo?
There is no point in spamming me. I will simply delete it unread

Original Message --
From: Branka Josilo-Perry
Subject: Fwd: Who bombed the markets in Sarajevo?
Date: Mon, 13 Feb 2006 09:28:24 +0000
Subject: Who bombed the markets in Sarajevo?
Who was responsible for the market place massacres in Sarajevo ?
Seán Mac Mathúna
"A few days ago Mr. Boutros Ghali informed me that the projectile
which hit the Markale marketplace in Sarajevo was an act of
(Bosnian) Muslim provocation". President Mitterrand of France, 1995
Open military confrontation in Bosnia-Herzegovina ended with the
signing of the Dayton Peace Agreement on 14th December 1995. The
conflict had resulted in more than 160,000 deaths, and 2.5 million
refugees and displaced persons. Not long before, the United Nations
(UN) had ordered the first combat units from its rapid reaction
force into Sarajevo, after after Serb rebels killed two French
peacekeepers. Three Bosnian Serb shells had hit the French and
Danish areas of a U.N. compound in Zetra, north of Sarajevo's
centre killing a French peacekeeper and wounding another French
soldier and a Dane. A half-hour later, another French peacekeeper
was killed and two wounded, one seriously, when a U.N. convoy was
targeted by Serbs in the suburb of Butmir. The deaths brought the
number of French dead to 42 since the Bosnian war began in April
1992 - and not all of them were killed by the Bosnian Serbs, a
number of them were also killed in crossfire or deliberately by the
forces of the Bosnian government.
Not only did the UN get tough with the Bosnian Serbs - whose
political and military leaders have now been charged with war
crimes - in 1995, NATO had become directly involved when when they
ordered air strikes against the Bosnian Serbs. These attacks had
been preceded by a series of barbaric attacks against civilians in
the Markele market in Sarajevo, all of which were assumed to be the
work of the Serb army laying siege to Sarajevo.
There were three attacks on the markets, all of which were blamed
on them: the first on 27th May 1992, killed 16 people, the second
on 5th February 1994 killed 68, and the third on 28th August 1995,
killed 37. The last attack is the most significant, as it has been
widely alleged, by members of the UN Mission in Bosnia, UN
Commanding officers and of course, predictably, the Bosnian Serbs
themselves, that this one in particular was staged by elements
within the Bosnian government to provide the pretext for NATO
military involvement in the war. In subsequent attacks, bombs and
bullets used by the NATO jets used Depleted Uranium (DU) which is
now estimated to have claimed the lives of some Serb 300 civilians
who lived in the vicinity of the bases hit by NATO, according to
reports that surfaced in 2001. What evidence is there for the
claims that the Bosnian government carried out these attacks ?
The first attack in 1992
The first of three attacks happened on 27th May 1992 when 16 people
killed in a "mortar attack" on a bread queue in Vase Miskina street
in Sarajevo. As The Independent (22nd August 1992) noted, the
televised scenes of civilians cut to pieces by an explosion as they
queued for bread horrified international public opinion, and added
growing pressure for NATO to "intervene" in the civil war against
the Bosnian Serbs. Vivid footage showed dead bodies littering the
street and "terrified crying people sitting on the pavement in
pools of blood". The attacks came shortly before a meeting by
European Union ambassadors to consider imposing sanctions on the
Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. UN officials from the start were
"suspicious about the circumstances but would not go public with
their thoughts without jeopardising the UN mission" in Bosnia.
Classified reports given to the commander of the UN peace keepers,
General Satish Nambiar, concluded that it was likely that the army
of the Bosnian government in Sarajevo carried out the attack. In
fact, they were reported to believe it wasn't a mortar attack at
all but a "command-detonated explosion - probably in a can". The
impact mark left by the "mortar" on the market square floor was
nowhere "near as large as we came to expect with a mortar round
lading on a paved surface". This is also supported by another UN
commander in Bosnia, General Michael Rose of the British army, who
according to his book Dispatch the Bosnian government in Sarajevo
shelled their own people to get a military response by NATO against
the Bosnian Serbs (The Observer, 28th March 1999). NATO launched
air strikes against the Bosnian Serbs as a result of this attack.
According to The Independent, United Nations (UN) officials and
senior Western military officers believe that the attack in 1992
was carried out by the Bosnian government, "To win world sympathy
and trigger intervention". This was also expressed in confidential
reports circulating at the UN headquarters in New York, and in
classified briefings to US policy makers in Washington, according
to the British newspaper. The attack on the bread queue in Vase
Miskina Street also led to draconian sanctions against Yugoslavia
imposed by the Security Council (resolution 757) on 30th May 1992
(which had been preceded by Yugoslavia's expulsion from the WHO).
All supplies of raw materials to the well-developed pharmaceutical
industry of Yugoslavia for production of medicines were immediately
suspended. The justification for blaming Yugoslavia for attacks
carried out in Bosnia was based on Western intelligence
disinformation that the country was directing the war on behalf of
the Bosnian Serbs.
The second attack in 1994
The second attack on a market in Sarajevo happened on 5th February
1994 when a single mortar round left 68 dead and 200 wounded. Some
people immediately questioned how son many civilians had been
killed or wounded by one mortar bomb. Furthermore, officials from
the Bosnian government did allow anyone from UNPROFOR to verify
what had happened. Despite vehement denials from the Bosnian Serbs,
the US news channel, CNN, immediately reported that they were
responsible for the shocking carnage that the attack left, which
CNN claimed was "caused by a Serb mortar bomb". The US President
Bill Clinton added to this saying it was "highly likely" that the
Bosnian Serbs were responsible for it.
Thus, US ambassador to the UN, Madeline Albright and the US
presidential security advisor Anthony Lake, immediately called for
NATO air strikes against the Bosnian Serbs. Yet there were already
people claiming that even the UN itself did not suspect the Bosnian
Serbs, but this appears to have been suppressed by the Western
media, possibly acting under covert British and American pressure,
assuming the the whole purpose of the mortar attack was to provide
the pretext for NATO military involvement in the Balkans for the
first time. If this is not the case, then it is certainly hinted at
by the former British Foreign Secretary David Owen in his book
Balkan Odyssey (Victor Gollanz, London, 1995):
"People around General Rose never tried to hide the fact that at
his meeting with Bosnian Muslim leaders (President Alia Izetbegovic
and General Delic) he said that he had just received some
information which shows that the mortar bomb did not come from the
area under Serb control but from the Muslim part of the city . . ."
However, Owen's account of the the Market square massacre in 1994
has been criticised by Noel Malcom in a review of his book in The
Sunday Telegraph on 12th November 1995.
When discussing the market-place massacre in Sarajevo of February
1994, Lord Owen goes on at length about a UN investigation which
concluded that the mortar shell had been fired from a Bosnian
Government position. Dramatically, he confirms that General Rose
put pressure on Bosnian ministers by threatening to reveal this
finding, unless they did as they were told. What Lord Owen does not
tell us is that a second, more thorough investigation found that
the first had made mistakes in its calculations, and concluded that
the shell could equally have come from the Serb side. It is surely
inconceivable that Owen is unaware of this second report; yet he
chooses not to mention it. Readers will have to draw their own
conclusions about the overall reliability of this grotesquely
vainglorious book.
But, Owen also fails to give any clear evidence as to the
perpetrators of this attack - if you read his statement carefully,
he is only telling us that the second investigation, although on
one hand, described as "more thorough", still concluded that the
shell could "equally" have come from the Serb side. This indicates
to me that their is still no hard evidence that either side were
responsible. Bosnian Serb and Russian claims should be treated with
scepticism (as they have a vested interest, from a propaganda point-
of-view, in making sure these allegations are widely circulated).
But the claims of the UN and representatives of various NATO
countries serving as peacekeepers should be treated as serious and
worthy of investigation.
From example, On 6th June 1996, Yasushi Akashi, UN special envoy
for Bosnia, told a German journalist working for DPA in New York,
that there was a secret UN report accusing the Bosnian government
forces of this massacre. It was claimed that this secret report was
passed on to the UN Secretary General, Boutros Boutros Ghali, who
did not publish it in the interest of "higher politics". Citing
this UN report, B. Volker, a French journalist working for TV TF1
said that the mortar bomb was fired from Bosnian government
positions. Volker also quotes the words of President Mitterrand: "A
few days ago Mr. Boutros Ghali informed me that the projectile
which hit the Markale marketplace in Sarajevo was an act of
(Bosnian) Muslim provocation".
The third attack in 1995
The third attack, on 28th August 1995 also hit market and left 37
dead and 90 wounded. When UN issued a declaration blaming the
Bosnian Serbs, it evidently ignored the report of the British and
French experts as well as the assessment of the UN's artillery
expert for the Sarajevo sector, a Russian colonel, A. Demurenko.
Soon after the attack, NATO launched extensive air strikes against
Bosnian Serb military and civilian targets. The strategy appeared
pre-planned as it coincided with an joint Croat and Bosnian
government offensive against the Bosnian Serbs. The attacks changed
the course of the war in Bosnia as enabled NATO to enter the
conflict on behalf of the Bosnian government and Croat forces.
After this attack, President Yeltsin gave official credence to
reports circulating in the Russian media that a "third party" was
responsible for the mortar attack on the bread queue. Yeltsin said
that Russia "insists" that the UN "look again" at the attacks as
there was new evidence indicating that it was not the Bosnian
Serb's who carried out the attack. Despite this, NATO went ahead
and launched air strikes. One military adviser to the foreign
ministry, General Boris Gromov, even claimed (with no evidence
provided) that one of the NATO powers was involved in the mortar
attack "as a provocation". Yeltsin also said:
"Why am l against the expansion of NATO ? This (mortar attack in
Sarajevo) is the first sign of what might happen when NATO comes
right up to the borders of the Russian Federation. Those who insist
on the expansion of NATO are making a major political mistake. The
flame of war would burst out across the whole of Europe" (The
Guardian, 9th September 1995).
The Russians and Bosnian Serbs have claimed that the third attack
was prepared in advance over many months by "certain" Western
secret services (probably including the CIA), and that Bosnian
government troops under the commander of the General R. Delic
carried it out. The reason for this, they argue, was to provide
NATO with an opportunity not only discredit the Bosnian Serbs, but
to provide the pretext to use heavy air strikes on them so as to
destroy their military potential. The Russian intelligence service
(FSB) were said to had known about the preparation of the plan
since February 1995. Then a detailed plan, allegedly called Cyclone
2, was related to a secret memorandum, signed on 10th August 1995
at the Pleso airport in Zagreb, Croatia. The memorandum was signed
for the UN by the commander of the UNPROFOR forces based Croatia
and Bosnia,General B. Janvier and by Admiral L. Smith for NATO.
This secret memorandum was only passed on, as "secret", on 13th
September 1995 to the UN Security Council, when the main
destruction of Serb targets had already taken place. According to
article 7 of the memorandum UNPROFOR agreed to provide all
information necessary for the NATO strikes against Serb targets to
achieve the maximum success.
According to the FSB, the mortar was fired from the roof of a
building near the market and they further claimed that the device
was not a standard mortar bomb. Another author, Y. Bodansky, the
director of the Republican parliamentary task force studying
terrorism and unconventional warfare (Target America, Terrorism in
the US Today, S.P.I. Books, Shapolsky Publishers, New York, 1993),
believed that the Bosnian Serb intelligence service knew that
"something was being planned" in Sarajevo. On 26th August 1995 (two
days before the second massacre) he spoke by telephone to a senior
official of the Republika Srpska in the Yugoslav capital, Belgrade,
who told him anxiously that once again "something terrible is being
planned against the Serbs" in Sarajevo. How much of this is true,
made up or just a joint FSB-Bosnian Serb disinformation campaign is
hard to assess.
Another report indicating that the Bosnian Serbs were not
responsible for this market place attacks was published in The
Sunday Times on October 1st 1995. It claimed that British
ammunition experts serving with the UN in Sarajevo had "challenged"
key evidence of the attack on the bread market which not only
triggered NATO attacks against the Serbs in Bosnia, but turned the
tide of the war against them. According to the newspaper, the
British experts:
"found no evidence that the Bosnian Serbs had fired the lethal round"
Nora Beloff, writing in her book Yugoslavia: An Avoidable War (New
European Publications, London, England, 1997), also allege that
"that Bosnian government arranged to kill their own people" so as
to get the Bosnian Serbs blamed. She alleges the news reporter
Martin Bell, now an independent MP in Britain, had known about
these allegations through his contacts with British UN officers but
"he ignored what they might have told him". She repeats claims, as
reported in David Owen's account of the bombings, that western
experts had discovered that it was the Bosnian government forces
and not the Bosnian Serbs who had been behind the attack in
February 1994. Allegedly, when UNPROFOR wanted the Bosnian
government to participate in truce negotiations, the British
commander, General Michael Rose:
"Blackmailed the Bosnian Muslim leaders into submission. He told
them that unless they agreed to cooperate, he would tell the
international press that he had technical expertise proving that
the grenade came from the Muslim, not the Serb, side" (Beloff,
Other attacks supposedly carried out by the Bosnian government -
and blamed on the Bosnian Serbs - include:
29th June 1992: Rocket attack on Sarajevo's TV station kills 5
people. Bosnian government troops implicated in this attack (The
Sunday Times, October 1st 1995).
17th July 1992: A "choreographed" mortar salvo, 30 seconds after
British Foreign Secretary Douglas Hurd entered a building for a
meeting with the Bosnian President, Alija Izetbegovic. The attack
killed or wounded 10 bystanders - but not Hurd's guard of honor,
who had clearly been forewarned and ducked for cover seconds before
the attack.
4th August 1992: Bomb attacks which were filmed by the Western film
crews at a funeral of two orphans in a cemetery in Sarajevo. The
attacks were blamed on the Bosnian Serbs.
13th August 1992: After the Yugoslav Prime Minister Milan Panic
arrives in Sarajevo airport for a meeting with Izetbegovic, a
Bosnian government sniper kills US TV producer David Kaplan. The
attacks disrupts the schedule of Panic, and he only manages to
spend 20 minutes on the phone with Izetbegovic.
Philip Corwen, a senior member of the UN in Bosnia has recently
written a book about his experience there (Dubious Mandate: A
memoir of the UN in Bosnia, Summer 1995 [Duke, London, UK, 1999]):
"The French forces (the main UN armed force in Sarajevo) were
continually harassed, shot at, blocked at, and threatened by
Bosnian government forces . . . it was the French who pointed out
that the Bosnian government was placing weapons systems next to UN
facilities in order to draw fire from Serb artillery onto civilian
and UN targets and thus provoke international outrage against the
Serbs . .. (p178)
I recommend that readers interested in the background to the
conflict in Bosnia read Corwen's book: His meticulous account
shatters once and for all the "one victim - one enemy" myth
promoted mainly by the Western media. For the record, l
unequivocally condemn the war crimes and crimes against humanity
carried out by the Bosnian Serb regime against the people of
Sarajevo - whom they relentlessly bombed and shelled. The Bosnian
Serb leaders Radovan Karadzic and General Ratko Mladic have been
rightfully indicted by the International war crimes tribunal in the
Netherlands - but why has this tribunal failed to indict Alija
Izectbegovic, the Bosnian President and other senior officials of
his government when there is clearly enough prima-facie evidence of
their complicity in war crimes carried out by the Bosnian army ? I
believe that the UN probably has ample evidence to show that the
Bosnian government carried out these attacks in Sarajevo, but along
with NATO, decided not to pursue charges against Bosnian government
leaders for political reasons, and decided to sweep the whole story
under the carpet and suppress it.
Footnote: an estimated 300 civilians killed after NATO used
depleted Uranium in reprisal attacks
"Up to 300 men, women and children who lived close to the site of
the (NATO) bombings in 1995 have died of cancers and leukemia over
the last five years". Robert Fisk, 2001
Finally the bombings of the market place unleashed a wave of NATO
air-strikes against Bosnian Serb military targets in and around
Sarajevo. In these attacks, bombs and bullets used by the NATO jets
used Depleted Uranium (DU) that is now estimated to have claimed
the lives of some Serb 300 civilians who lived in the vicinity of
the bases hit by NATO. According to Robert Fisk, writing in The
Independent of Sunday on 14th January 2001, NATO subjected the Serb
military bases and surrounding civilian areas to an intense
bombardment between 30th August to 15th September 1995, using jets
and artillery from Mount Igman just outside Sarajevo. Civilians
living in the area surrounding the bases starting to begin
suffering from a variety of symptoms now linked to the use of DU by
NATO in Bosnia. NATO governments have so far shown little interest
in helping the civilian victims of DU in either Bosnia, Yugoslavia
or during the assault on Iraq in 1990.

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