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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Double standards

The media celebration over the capture of Bosnian Serb warlord Radovan Karadzic has very little to do with any notion of “justice” for his victims.

It continues a simplistic myth put forward by Western leaders and the media in the 1990s – that ancient ethnic divisions lay behind the break-up of Yugoslavia and that the Serbs were the chief aggressors.

Portraying the Balkan tragedy as the result of a simple clash between “good” and “bad” was useful for the West. It hid its role in the break-up of the country and justified Western intervention.

The disintegration of Yugoslavia was bloody and all sections of its multi-ethnic population suffered pogroms and ethnic cleansing.

But while the “international community” hunted for Serb war criminals, it supported the likes of Croatia’s notorious President, Franjo Tudjman – who has the blood of 20,000 Croatian Serbs on his hands.

Tony Blair and Bill Clinton waged a brutal war on Serbia in 1999 in the name of “humanitarian intervention”.

Karadzic’s arrest provides an excellent opportunity for those who supported the West’s war on Serbia to rehabilitate this discredited doctrine.

He will probably be brought before the Hague to answer for the deaths of the 12,000 people who died in the siege of Sarajevo and the massacre of 7,500 Bosnian Muslims from Srebrenica.

But the idea that Blair or Clinton could be brought to justice for the deaths caused by their war is treated as absurd.

As is the idea that George Bush, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Condoleeza Rice or Tony Blair might also be bought before a United Nations tribunal to answer for the deaths of over one million Iraqis or for creating chaos in Afghanistan.

The media is too busy celebrating Karadzic’s capture to even pose the question.

As far as the bourgeois media is concerned, genocide is something that is only carried out by others.

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