Saturday, April 21, 2007

"Fools' Crusade" Chapter Five [14]



This is one of the longer sections of the entire book--over nine pages--apparently because Johnstone needs to further illustrate what a hate-filled, bloodthirsty savages Albanians are, and to thoroughly document NATO guilt in unleashing such monsters of any civilizing constraints.

The tone of this section was established at the end of the previous section ("The Rambouillet Farce"):

"The result was predictable and certain: streams of refugees, material devastation, innocent people killed, wounded and bereaved, homes and livelihoods lost. A less visible but equally disastrous consequence of this US-NATO decision to "solve" the Kosovo problem by war was an unprecedented wave of bitter hatred. In the name of "human rights" and "humanitarianism", hatred triumphed in Kosovo."

Where to start? This "result" was inevitable? The bloodshed in Kosovo was the fault of NATO for setting off a chain reaction of unavoidable bloodshed and revenge? Are we to address matters of geopolitical crises with crude, broad mass psychology?

The difficulty in finding any spot grounded in fact has become almost too much by this point--there is almost no point in addressing Johnstone's argument here because she is so far adrift from reality. The facts are plain, and well-documented--the campaign of ethnic cleansing that Serb military and police forces unleashed after the NATO bombing was systematic and well-coordinated; the logistical planning involved in that gruesome endeavor was immense. The idea that there was anything spontaneous about that shock campaign of ethnic cleansing is simply absurd. But by claiming that this was, indeed, the case, Johnstone also reveals an interesting premise underlying her arguments--that the peoples of the Balkans are somehow not responsible for their actions, good or bad. The Albanian resistance was, she assures the reader, nothing but an expression of the ingrained violence and hatred embedded in the Albanian soul, unleashed by Western sponsors. And the carefully orchestrated violence of Serbian paramilitary forces acting in a coordinated fashion in hundreds of villages across Kosovo? Simply a natural, uncontrolled response to NATO meddling.

And so sophisticated Diana Johnstone, who constantly scolds ignorant Westerners for their naive failure to grasp the complexities and subtleties of Balkan peoples essentially treats the various ethnic groups as unthinking, unreflective herds who respond en masse to outside stimuli. I've said it before and I'll say it again--those hardline Serb nationalists who have embraced Johnstone as an ally would do well to reconsider. Their sympathetic Western ally has some curious ideas about them.


Enough digression. It is enough to to have read the final paragraph of the previous section (quoted above) in order to set the stage for Part 3, "The Triumph of Hatred." We will begin quickly summarizing and considering that lengthy piece of spiteful revisionism beginning in the next post.

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