The Outlook for Intervention in Bosnia
The Opinion page article "NATO Forces Should End Bosnia Massacre," July 31, conveys a true lack of understanding of the conflict in Bosnia.
Not only is this a war of aggression, but it is also a popular insurrection and most importantly a civil war. Although it is quite clear that Belgrade supported the Serbs in Bosnia, it is clear that Croatia is also involved in the war, and the Serbs in Bosnia are beyond Begrade's control. The sanctions against Yugoslavia have not diminished the violence.
The suffering the author also cites is not nationally exclusive. United Nations agencies, human rights groups, and Western media have reported atrocities committed against the Serbs. Concentration camps containing Serbs, massacres of Serbian civilians, and forced displacement of Serbs have been documented in Muslim- and Croat-held areas.
The only peace that is likely to last in Bosnia is one reached through a political settlement. Pressure should be brought against all parties to the dispute to accept the Lisbon Document agreed to by all three political leaderships in March. Once a political accord is reached, then and only then could a military force be used to shore up the peace by disarming all forces and by ensuring the safe return of refugees.
Military intervention on one side of the conflict is not the answer. As history has shown, the military imposition of peace in Bosnia is an extremely costly and long process - just ask the Turks, Austrians, and Germans. Obrad Kesic, Princeton, N.J.
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