FROM TERRITORY TO PEOPLE : NATIONS ADRIFT.
Publisher and Editor-in-chief
(20/3 - 2/4/2001)
Our western political thought is being skewed by an odd perversion. In the absence of anything more apt, it could be given a somewhat torturous definition as its own "ethnification" or "ethnisitation." In the thought that dominates our Euro-american world, with its Near Eastern and African fringes, the focus is entirely on the component peoples, their histories, their rights, their conditions and their claims.
The "right of selfdetermination" has his roots in anti-Colonialism meant to break-up the huge British, French, German, and other empires exploiting vast surfaces of the globe for their own profit. The supporters of "selfdetermination" did not struggle for the freedom of any specific ethnicity. Instead, they sought to do away with the yoke on the backs of all the populations under foreign occupation.
This is an important distinction. It is based on the difference between Population and People, two terms all two often simply interchanged. A population is represented by the totality of inhabitants within a given territory. It has nothing to do with kin ties or who "belongs" to whom. Here the only frame of reference is the soil (territorial dominance after the Latin jus solis). When it comes to People the reference shifts to ethnicity -with its past, its culture, its language, and its uniqueness. As is frequently reiterated, blood is here the defining element (from Latin jus sanguinus). It is an abbreviated construct devoid of felicity. It induces dangerous value judgements about "purity" and "impurity". It does, however, have one advantage, namely its distinction from the soil.
The "right of self-determination" was attached traditionally to territorial Populations as a right to freedom and independence. It was not one confined to particular Peoples in recognition of their specificities. It is only in recent times, following the end of two World Wars, and after the dissolution of colonial empires, that this "right" became strictly "ethnicised." It was no longer a right of oppressed Populations, not even of Peoples with boundaries hard to establish. It became instead the right transferred clearly to well defined communities. The right of the Peoples transmuted into a Cult of Minorities.
Many things have contributed to this change. The war, with endless processions of patriotic stimuli, dealt some terrible blows to the humanistic ideals of world citizenship. The fall of Communism undermined the universality of the workers' international solidarity. "Internationalism" once perceived as a noble fraternal undertaking to harmonize the Planet Earth, gave way to a financial neo-Colonialism of an American superpower which engenders a variety of local resistances to its hegemony.
The progress of technology, combined with a virtual monopoly over the means of communication and the requirements of economic domination, served to accelerate social inequalities. In turn, this reinforced the feeling of alienation and impotence in the common man. The net result is an increasing need to connect with "roots", to belong to a group, to find one's identity within the anonymous mass. Defenders of the Multinationals and champions of Europe's unification continuously underrate the diversity of langages which acts to consolidate social fragmentation. Attempts at Esperanto have all failed while the English language as yet to conquer the totality of our universe. The ferment of separatist semantics is all the more active because well-intentioned imbeciles are promoting revivals of idioms, dialects and folkloric patois which provide for yet another process of atomization.
The Great Religions have also had a role to play. The most aggressive ones are on continuous proselytising missions seeking to transcend the spiritual space in order to enhance their temporal power. The simplest way to attain this is to become The Religion of a particular group. By appropriating its cultural patrimony, the Great Religion encapsulates it into a dogmatism of the Faithful as It jealously protects against the influences of infidel thought. All of this empowers a particular ethnic group to the detriment of the broader humanity. To this must be added an item of cultural evolution, namely the Cult of Minorities. Inspired and justified by respect for empowerment itself, it acquired the right to be different, the right to communitarianism. To put it another way, this amounts to a moral obligation to subscribe to ethnic-subdivisions of a society. Having a preference for that which divides over a unitary humanity is breaking-up into separatist islets, homogeneous and impenetrable, falling back ever more on the "ethnically pure" and imagined themselves.
By espousing terrorism the Cult of Minorities has created its own "ethnicised" slippery slope. Initially, terrorist acts had social content. Their perpetrators recommended themselves as fighters against injustice. They invoked the absolute necessity for violent and timely anarchy in order to change society. Incrementally, this social demand gave way to a political claim as the struggle continues to secure recognition of a group. The terrorist themselves have become "fighters" perceived alternately as criminals or heroes yet soldiers of an army. After the Israelis under British occupation, the Kurds, the Basques, the Irish, the Chechins, the Palestinians and the Albanians have given terrorism a new face. It is the face of self-proclaimed representatives of a would-be impoverished People that can only be heard through a resort to bombs. The braves of yore and the Robin Hoods, all isolated marginals meting out selective justice, have been replaced by militarised extremists engaged in a clandestine war put together in the name of patriotic objectives.
The risks involved in this "ethnisation" of modern geo-strategy are obvious. The introduction and practical application of value judgements tops the list. In a world broken-up into ethnicities -especially when these are confounded with religion- there is strong temptation to show distinct preference for some but downgrade others. Thus, molded by politics, circumstances and opinions, the behaviour (and even the very existence) of certain ethnicities is contested while others are viewed with favor. We are at the Gate of Racism taking roots in ethnicity. As soon as there is reference to a People, in essence a particular variety of individuals issuing from the same collective "stock", it becomes patently easy to qualify it by attributing virtues and vices in accordance with specifics interests and stands. Here, race comes to the fore. Chosen or Persecuted, as the case may be, it comes along with unacceptable excesses egged-on by this type of conception. The collective guilt assigned to "the Serbs" is a case in point, trumpeted by the International Community since the start of the Balkan crisis. This was the first large-scale manifestation of racism since the Jewish Holocaust.
The Cult of Minority's dominance within contemporary political thought is in full view. Yet, one can also see that it can be manipulated in turn. Thus, for example, had the Cult been followed across the board in ex-Yugoslavia, there would now be a mini-state of "Srpska Krajina." Instead, more than 250 000 ethnic Serbs had been "cleansed" out of Krajina in a single month, with both direct and indirect help of the West. Similarly, there has been much talk about severing completely Kosovo from Yugoslavia in support of its ethnic Albanian minority's "right to self-determination." In contrast, hardly anyone in the West advocates seriously a partition of Kosovo to accommodate its Serb minority's "right to self-determination" as well. Such asymmetries represent the tell-tale sign of manipulation.
Religious fanaticism presents yet another danger. The very isolation of religious communities increases among its members the need to share in a spirituality which bonds them. The common Faith becomes a cemented shield for a group finding itself amid strangers, more often than not hostile as well. This, in turn, leads to calls on Religion to protect. Given its natural penchant for the conquest of power, the Religion is only too happy to oblige through its clergy and spokesmen. The result is the identification with and inseparability of Religion and People. The spiritual and temporal controls of a community doubly endow its political claims with combat on behalf of Gold, producing oftentimes the delirious intensity of Righteousness.
One last evil consequence consists of the inversion of values, confusion of ideas and the imprecision of words. The last decade of events in the Balkans, especially in Yugoslavia, has been most revealing in this respect. Here, the "ethnic" approach literally burned-up all the analyses. There was even an incoherent start with the beginning of the Nineties. Initial secessions from The Yugoslav Federation were viewed uniformly as Population movements (understood as "ethnic" ones). False finding. The Slovenes, the Croats, the Bosnians (originally Croats or Serbs and Muslims only through Religious espousal) and the Serbs -all being Slavs- have been distinguishable solely by belonging to Catholicism, Orthodox Religion or to Islam. Over-ridden by the prevailing dogma of minority rights, this fundamental truth did not prevent the International Community from recognizing "new" nations in the same of justice due to People in the process of gaining "freedom from Serb domination." The ensuing conflict at Kosovo and the recent ripping apart of Macedonia have had the effect of reinforcing this point of view and all the more so since it has been served as an "ethnic" confrontation between the Serbs and the Albanians, two "enemy" Peoples "since times immemorial."
Various newscasters and commentators have not even been able to grasp the inversion of their own values. They speak all the time of pluralism and multi-ethnicity as determining values without a sense of reality which is precisely the opposite. Thanks to western policy, every "People" its to have is own country, what with : Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia sub-divided into Rapublika Srpska and Croato-Muslim Federation (about to split in turn), Kosovo, a Serbia which may soon be severed from Vojvodina and Sandzak, the Greater Albania of tomorrow, and a Macedonia as a moiety, without mentioning the Czech and Slovak Republics or the dismantling of the Soviet Union -the Europe is witnessing the birth of a bevy of nations which are the most "ethnically pure" of the Continent.
Some furthers particular need clarification due to a confusion of terms. A distinction has already been made between Populations and Peoples. It becomes necessary now to take a closer look at what are the Nation, Nationality, Citizenship and State.
Let us start with nationality. Its ambiguity derives from the fact that in contemporary usage it designates the belonging to a constituent Nation. It is thus said that one is "of French, or German, or Italian nationality" to attest that one is a citizen of France, Germany or Italy. This is an all too facile use of language which fails to consider the particular status of Nations and States, one which is at fault in assimilating nationality and citizen ship. As citizenship defines to which State one belongs, nationality has a more blurred connotation. It can go as far as to designate the belonging to a Religion, just as in ex-Yugoslavia with an existing Muslim State having its own nationals. Besides, within the Federal Yugoslavia of yesterday, hostilities between nationalities and republics were exacerbated by the Great Powers to end in secessions with their own grotesque attempts at differentiation. Such has been the practice of linguistics separatisms involving the Croat and Macedonian languages severed from the Serb. It reminds one of trying to separate French from the Quebecois, the Bruxellois or the Valaisan.
With the "ethnicist" evolution, nationality has prevailed over citizenship, evoking rather the People and not the State. There are now Scottish, Basque, Corsican, Catalan, Palestinian, Chechin or Kurdish Nationalities. As of now, there is not much credible talk in France about the Provençale, Bretonne, or Savoyarde nationalities. These will not be late in coming along, however. The principal reason behind the "ethnisation" of nationality is relatively simple : leaders of minorities that labor at national promotions, as well as those who support them, know that the "ethnic" word evokes the idea of a Nation. By baptizing it as nationality they anticipate the future of their community. Their objective is to transform it into a Nation. By labelling themselves as "nationalists" they patent respectability.
The newly arriving nationalisms have encountered some rather different estimations. In concert with their habits, their intellectuals sublimate mainly with the most distant aspects ; the politician praises those who brings their voters who can elect ; the governments, on the other hand, encourage those obstructing other countries by repressing those apt to spread troubles at home. In connection with the ex-Yugoslavia there is the need to mention, at least in passing, the role of bad faith which has helped the International Community to support all of the local nationalisms, from the Slovene separatists to the Albanian terrorists. The sole exception relates to a falsely depicted. "Greater-Serbia" Belgrade, roundly condemned and "doomed to end in failure."
The State itself is an administrative and political entity incorporating its members as citizens. This basic definition of principle does not contain even the slightest hint of ethnicity. The citizens can be of different nationalities reflecting a variety of Peoples. Inversely, a federated Nation can envelop all the citizens of States in the Federal structure, irrespective of their ethnic origins. The method of making such a structure possible is of rather slight consequence. Its essential feature is that the State and the citizens merge (or should merge) collectively into an undifferentiated and purely juridical system of governance in which the same Law applies to all. That at least, is the theory. In practise the solidification of minorities (perceived as the discovery of "self" by some and as subversion by others) has been instrumental in introducing discriminations within the citizenry as an integral part of the ways in which certain States actually function. As a result, the fundamental neutrality of the system of government goes out of the window. As our premier and most beloved comic of France, Coluche, used to say, "We are all equal but there are some who are more equal than others." The State is confounded with nationality or a single People to the detriment of a segment of its constituents. It is sad to have to note that the actual "ethnicist" evolution thus impels the State to betray its mission.
Finally, the Nation is a collective shaped by history, geography and culture which are its flesh while the State provides the bones alone. The richer the Nation's past, the less it is prone to see itself reduced as a representation of a single People. That has been the case of all the Great Nations of Europe, including Yugoslavia, that have been able to reassemble their diversities within a Population consisting of various ethnicities occupying the same territorial space. In this arrangement it is the soil that acquires primacy over the blood. State structures can be different : Confederations, Federations, Centralist States, Regional Autonomies. Yet these are all reunited in a single enabling construct which agglomerates, integrates and assimilates through a common language and shared values. The differences are confined to a nook instead of being paraded where everyone can see them in spades. The real Nation is, in effect, a "melting pot" and not a mere assembling of specs.
Such a concept of a polymorphic Nation is contrary to the prevailing "ethnicist" tendencies. It provides the only barrier against racist ferments which generate the abusive cult of Peoples or minorities. This is so on the sole condition that it upholds its essence, expressed through total indifference to origins. The slightest shortfall in this absence of discrimination immediately justifies all the ethnic claims while betraying the national calling which defangs them through a rigorous respect of equality. If a Nation and a State, as its legally mandated repository, know how to treat, without exceptions, in exactly the same manner, all of the component ethnicities willing to enter into the covenant to insure the order required for the very existence of a Nation and State.
All of the already discussed definitions of principles seem to be reasonably clear on paper but it becomes more difficult to discern them in the real world. There are two basics reasons for this, namely manipulations through propaganda and contradictions in the testimonies. The most powerful shaper of public opinion today happens to be unabashed disinformation. Through progress in technology and communications, it has reached the proportions of a totalitarian assault on human conscience. Given the veneer of "political correctness" it has become virtually impossible to recover even a small fragment of truth from the fog caused by outright lies. We have some idea of this here, at "the Balkans-info" journal that this author has kept alive for some five years so far. It has been a publication devoted to combat the boggling of the mind in connection with the drama of the Balkans. During the years as a professional journalist, I have never seen so many stage-managements, such distortions of even basic facts, the high elevations of poison in both the audio-visual and scribal media, the myriad fakeries and the parades of untruths. With total scorn for ordinary decency, "the Serbs" have been satanized while their adversaries were endowed with virtual sainthood. All sorts of pretexts were advanced in order to dismantle Yugoslavia, to implant military colonies in Bosnia and at Kosovo, and to bomb Serbia itself. At the point when the political regime changed hands in Belgrade, with the lavish support of American dollars, the wretched of yesterday became the saints of today. Simultaneously, the West's former Albanians allies became worrisome as a disruptive element through a parade of information items doctored as much in this new sense as they had been tampered with previously in the older one.
How does one get to some proximity to truth ? Were the Kosovo's Albanians marginalized, according to their own claims, by the monopolizing Serbs ? In order to advertise their presence, did they do right to boycott the helping hand tendered officially by Belgrade ? Did they really need to unleashed a civil war in order to secure their freedoms ? Or, as the Serbs counter-claim, did they not enjoy the same rights, the same access to positions at work and advantages, to the same education at identical levels of learning ? Were they a deprived minority or a band of rebels always more demanding, accepting nothing less than an independence which would lead, in its wake, to the expulsion of everything considered "alien" ?
If the Albanians'autonomy was real, if their citizenship was co-equal, the Serbs had every right to defend themselves against assassinations and suppress a terrorism without a leg to stand on. And, in such a condition, the International Community had no right to intervene under an humanitarian pretext of its own making, designed to justify its bellicose action. Even if the Serbs had not been completely innocent of the anti-Albanian bias they were tarred with, there was nothing around to authorize anyone to wage an illegal war against the Serbs for the would-be purpose of "re-establishing peace."
Besides, it is worth observing that the realities we had described throughout the years at "Balkans-info," realities disengaged from a wave (more aptly, a Tsunami) of manipulated information and contradictory testimonies do serve to obviate the unilateral demonization of the Serbs. More than that, our findings have obtained a posteriori verifications. Macedonia is defending itself today against the same Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA or UCK in Albanian) that had attacked the Serbs. The only difference is that the International Community is now allowing to Skoplje what it had refused to Belgrade. The would-be heroes of the national liberation of Kosovo did not transform themselves, between just yesterday and today, into dangerous assassins. This is precisely what they have always been. In turn, this fact reveals that the Serb Army and police were absolutely justified to attempt a KLA wipe-out.
It is unfortunate that, again, the ethnic approach brings in its perverted effects. After championing the causes espoused by the Slovenes, Croats and Bosnian Muslims, and after destroying the multi-ethnic Yugoslav State, the very same Western sorcerer's apprentices have mounted the Albanian horse. They never even came to ponder the fact that Yugoslavia was a model of pluralism. Even at the peak of the anti-terrorist repression at Kosovo, the Serbs had not come to denigrate "Albanity" itself as they pursued the murderers. This is in sharp contrast to the hate constantly expressed toward "Serbianity" by the same men. It cannot be stressed enough that Serbia of today continues to be a refugee haven for dozens of different nationalities.
It is probable that the Balkans tragedy of the last decade could have been avoided with its hundreds of thousands of the dead and the displaced. The victims of pillages and expulsions could have been spared the agonies through a pre-condition. Instead of honoring the pretensions of the self-styled Peoples in need of independence, the International Community needed to take a firm stand at the very start of the intra-Yugoslav discussions by declaring that it would not tender its recognition to any secessionist State of ex-Yugoslavia. Its failure to so do was due to a blindness caused by the adulation of minorities.
Having said that, it is necessary to probe a little deeper. If many of the political heads in the West happen be notoriously incompetent, especially in matters affecting foreign affairs, one should not conclude that all the damages they had caused were involuntary or accidental. Without bringing-up the fiction of secret cells created by the all-powerful plotters out to control the world, there remains the necessity to disconnect from such a scenario the actual existence of quite real occult plans and non-admitted goals. Among them, "ethnisation" is not the fruit of stupidity on the part of our leaders. Its corresponds to a desire and the will to bring about regionalisation and tribalization meant to weaken certain national centralisms and thus undermine the very structure of a Nation.
In this game, at once secret and formidable, Germany first, with the United States right behind, hold the top place. In the April 1997 issue of "Balkans-info," General Pierre Marie Gallois, one of the best geostrategic specialists, revealed the existence of a "European Center for the Study of the Lot of Minorities," financed by the Bonn Government. It is but one of the agencies which engender and fund special missions to various countries of the Continent to gratify Germany's will-to-power as ruler of Europe and implement it by supporting the centrifugal forces among the potential opponents of Germany's Continental hegemony. It is not a novel enterprise since Nazi Germany had already sided with the Breton and Flammand separatists in the course of its occupation of France. The New Germany pre-empted everyone else in saluting the Yugoslav secessionists and induced, by its own example, the international recognition of "new nations" in the process of devouring the Yugoslav Federation. During the war in Bosnia, Germany equipped and armed the Serb adversaries and did exactly the same with the "Kosovo Liberation Army" (KLA). The lasting nature of German ambition is self-evident. By helping Peoples to orbit out of Nations, Germany can decidedly weaken all the rivals. This strategy has undergone a magisterial and most detailed depiction in a remarkable book penned by Pierre Hillard and just published by François-Xavier de Guibert. As its preface-writer Paul-Marie Couteaux describes the contents, they deal with "what could well become one of predominant themes in the next few years." The key here is the Awakening of Ethnic Irredentisms all over Europe with consequences of a potentially huge reach. All of it is due to the patient and consistent work of Germany everywhere, so as to bring them to life, to fortify and use them for its political aims.
The United States hardly hide their intention to dominate the World. Their hegemonist policy of Economic and financial Imperialism emanates from their current as the sole remaining super-Power. The pillars supporting this type of Imperialism lead directly into such internationalized entities as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, the OSCE, NATO and the Criminal Tribunal at the Hague. It must be admitted that this lethal American strategy, underpinned, to boot, by the stupidity and cowardice of its European accomplices, finds itself at the moment in a state of complete success in the Balkans. Yugoslavia, the only state capable of inconveniently standing in its way, has been dismembered. Serbia, as the last stumbling-block, has been tossed into the pot with the rest of Yugoslavia's ex-members, and, one might add, through a change abundantly subvented by the outgoing Clinton Administration. All the others have been reduced to the level of colonial protectorates or orbiting satellites heavily dependent on the U.S. financial aid. The new candidates for membership in NATO, that is to say into supervised docility and compliance, are slated to enrich America's munitions and arms makers, by having to deflect and spend financial fortunes in order to attain the "NATO standards." The environmental and economic harm done has already opened up gigantic markets for reconstruction but one payable in dollars only. New avenues for the transport of oil have been opened, along with new military bases (like the huge Camp Bondsteel at Kosovo), and the encirclement of Russia is now complete. In fact, Washington rules today over a field of ruins. It will be allowed to vegetate, with the acquiescence of Germany and Great Britain, even if this "partnership" may not be of long duration as rivalry develops between Germany and the United States.
The most acute angle of this "ethnicist" optic has just been cleared in connection with the conflict exploding in Macedonia. It forces our Oracles into some diversionary acrobatics. For example, Lord David Owen, who has had a major role in drafting several plans designed to resolve Yugoslavia's problems, has sounded a clarion call with an article published in Le Monde (23/3/2001). Under the heading of "Redesigning the map of the Balkans," he advocates border re-adjustments within the Balkans Peninsula to coincide with irredentist claims. He has been closely seconded by Fareed Zakaria in the Newsweek (2 April 2001) where he proposes, with cold-blooded detachment, the following devolution :
"It is high time for NATO to come to grips with transfers of power to every single (ethnic) community that demands it, in Bosnia and Kosovo, and perhaps persuade, privately the Macedonian Government to do the same. The Albanian enclave in Macedonia can easily be detached to form its own Entity. If, thereafter, the Albanians at Kosovo and Macedonia wish to unit or stay separate, well, that is their own business. If the Bosnian Serbs wish to join Belgrade, good luck. If the Croats wish to join the New Croatia, mazeltov. From the moment on when all this takes place, through negotiation and without bloodshed, what importance, if any can be attached to all the small statelets bound to surface. The desirable outcome is that there will be some more seats at the United Nations." (1)
It is entirely clear where the blind support of Peoples has led so far. There are now rump States, ethnic "mini-nationalities" and Great Nations in a state of degeneration. That was the goal pursued and the result obtained. Is it at all possible to cope with the present-day mess that promises nothing but troubling tomorrows ?
The dream of Universality is now encapsulated in an internationalism of the New World Order or, to put it differently, in an Empire of the banks, the multinationals and American money. Its mirror image is to be found in an industrialized and monetarised Europe which totally neglects the social aspects of imposing such a Continental Union. One possible opposition to this "Summit Internationalism" is already on its way through basic anti-Globalisation movements which are spreading beyond their mainly local points of response. At the moment, they are corporal, poorly organized and politically confused. They do not grasp as yet that Bové's enemies are those of Milosevic as well ; that these are the same individuals who decide to impose embargoes, who embellish with poetic license their (military) interventions and diktats and who have already bombed Belgrade. Yet, the sheer potential of these contesting movements is very real. Above all, they have the advantage of being able to cut horizontally into the vertical which reflects the people, to re-discover the separateness of labor and capital. In a word to replace the ethnic with the social. It happens to be a moment in time when every communal body, with its strata of the privileged, comes to disregard the gap between those who exploit and the exploited, comes to realise that the social strata leap across frontiers and puncture the bloated communitarianism and its false and conniving attachment to blood. If these movements can modernize the living tradition of an earlier international solidarity, if they can focus on putting the fight against economic injustice ahead of defending minorities, and if they target imperialism itself, they can indeed come to provide serious hope for a better future.
While awaiting for this response to the New World Order to gel, the safest pillar to rest the resistances on amount to what can be called an open concept of the Nation. It is a concept enriched in France over several centuries through the respective additions of the Monarchy and the Revolution. It is the same concept that belongs to ex-Yugoslavia (one still extant) and which, incidentally, renders the betrayal of friendship between the two countries even more reprehensible. If I evoke France, there is no need to search in this act some sort of patriotic vanity. The France of Enlightenment, of equality among her citizens, of a land open to strangers, guaranteeing the right of sanctuary, the freedom to secularism, enjoying the structure of a homogenous republic and the integrity of her natural frontiers - that was, for a long time, a France that inspired, as a model, not a few nations. It is a modern concept of life together which must not be deprived of its vitality either through chauvinistic phobia against immigrants or the chilly protectionism of another Era, or, yet, by a blind acceptance of Globalization and the abandonment of a sovereignty which is essential to independence. The path between self-enclosure and a too obliging openness is indeed a narrow one. But, it must be found because this form of a Nation, with a common patrimony and beyond discrimination, in any form, is the most desirable antidote to "ethnisation" and racism. The undertaking itself will be a difficult one, to be sure. It will be absolutely necessary to resist at the same time the sirens of financial internationalism and the insisting on communitarian claims, to be concerned more with conditions of life within Populations than with the interests of particular Peoples. In short, to favor the Social to the Ethnic desiderata.
It is a price that must be paid in order to prevent a decline. If countries other than France alone, follow this pattern of renewal, Europe will have an entirely different face. It will be the face of an assemblage of civilized nations unified by the tradition of cultural osmosis and equality of its citizenry. It will not be a collection of tribes obsessed by their singularities and run by chieftains devoured by their own petty ambitions. It will be the face of a Humane Continent.
(*) With tenacity and fairness, Louis Dalmas, a French journalist of long standing, and his "Balkans-info" have refused to capitulate to the Western propaganda mills as these sought to impose a contemporary "history" of the Yugoslav fratricidal drama. It is clear, in retrospect, that "Balkans-info" will become an essential research repository for anyone interested in finding an approximation of truth. (added by R.K. Kent)