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<nettime> Independent Journalists' Association of Serbia
Mirko S. Mandrino on Sun, 25 Apr 1999 20:04:25 +0200 (CEST)


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<nettime> Independent Journalists' Association of Serbia


Dear friends,

Several of you have sent me in past few weeks the express of your
appreciation and mention something about my strength. It might be that you
overestimated me -- last night even I was not able to work at all. Firstly
we heard in Pancevo already well known but ominous roar of airplanes. And
than -- you already know. The missile with -- how many, 2000 kg of
explosive, directly into the building full of people. Center of Belgrade
center. The rest you were able to see on your TV screens. I am witness,
reliable witness, how we all, and particularly the members of the
Independent Journalists' Association of Serbia were fighting against
propaganda created from radio television Serbia. We started in 1991, at the
time of Vukovar. We did the same during the suffering of people in
Sarajevo. In the winter 1996/1997 we used eggs "against" this building.
With some support and within some time period, the building, equipment and
working people would be "on our side". Instead of that, cold blood murder
has been committed. I wonder how the pilots, missile operators and
commanders were able to sleep after killing. Do they have dreams? I wonder
would the children of murdered women and men be able to take the bottle of
US made coca cola in their hands. To remind you -- even the formal
declaration of war was not announce, so we don't know with whom and why we
are in the war. War? War has something to do with fighting, attack and
defence. Even the "war offices" of USA, Great Britain and Germany have the
names regarding "defence" -- not war. Dropping missiles from 15 000 feet is
not the war. It is cold blood murder. Furthermore, I wonder are NATO
"strategists" and their media lackeys at CNN, Sky and other companies aware
whom they murdered? NOT the creators of "pro-Milosevic propaganda" (who
also do not deserve death, but fair trials) but apprentices, clerks,
doormen... A friend of mine, good radio-amateur, is a doorman their. Branko
is a very fine young man, but he has to live -- and that is why he accepted
miserably paid job at RTS. He was not at duty that fatal night, but his
friends were. Instead of offering jobs (e.g. Branko's English is very good,
and he is not so bad in electronics) the "democratic West" is offering
death.

Further down you will find the statement of the President of Independent
Journalists' Association of Serbia, my good friend Milosh Vasic. He is,
among another things, war reporter. He was in Vietnam, Cambodia, he was in
Bosnia during the war. He has vast experience in media, and speak several
languages. He might be anything else but the "pro Milosevic propagandist".
Read his opinion. No, better -- read the expresion of his pain which we all
share.

Independent Journalists' Association of Serbia President

The Independent Journalists' Association of Serbia is profoundly outraged
by NATO bombing of Radio Television of Serbia Belgrade Center, Friday early
morning. NATO planners should and must have known that innocent civilians,
duty journalists, producers, editors and technicians were at work around
the clock, seven days a week, in that building, like in any TV station
worldwide - and they knew! It was a premeditated criminal attack against an
utterly civilian target and we cannot accept any excuses, even less
hypocritical and cynical apologies by NATO officials about "collateral
damage". We are deeply concerned about the lack of courage and military
honour of NATO Allies, who keep playing their Nintendo games attacking
civilian targets from 15 000 feet. It is a lamentable display of arrogance
and cowardice. At least ten dead and a score of wounded media professionals
have been at their everyday jobs that night; and everybody knew that.
During the bloody wars in Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia since 1991, 76
journalists of all nationalities were killed in action, but they have never
been targeted as journalists; they just happened to be in harm's way doing
their job. Only two journalists were targeted deliberately during the
Kosovo conflict by the KLA and are still missing, believed dead. NATO
bombing of Serbian Radio Television building in Belgrade deliberately
targeted journalists and media professionals at work, fully aware of
consequences. It was a deliberate murder in cold blood. Our outrage and
desperation are overwhelming.

Milos Vasic, President Independent Journalists' Association of Serbia


He has grown up in a country run by politicians who sent the pilots to man
the bombers to kill the babies to make the world safe for children to grow
up in.
Ursula LeGuin
********************
Mirko S. Mandrino, peace activist
P O Box 14, 26000 Pancevo, Vojvodina
Yugoslavia
tel/fax +381 13 346 444
ICQ 35713954


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