This is a document in Serbian
where you can find various information concerning
the NATO military action against Serbia.
BELGRADE, SERBIA, YUGOSLAVIA
We, doctors in Yugoslavia, as humanitarians and people devoted to saving lives, call upon you, our colleagues and friends from more than 180 countries to raise our voice against bombing, destruction and genocide in international politics.
Information overwhelms us in this war. Every nation and each person, equally.
a. The dominant MASS MEDIA (CNN, SKY etc.) of today, including INTERNET burst in information.
b. Unfortunately, they have grossly failed their code of independent and unbiased reporting. What should we say about morality?
c. In war and military aggression it is the truth that
dies first. Have we forgotten
J. Goebbels, the creator of the Nazi propaganda machinery in WWII? Have we forgotten that it was he who said "a lie repeated ten times in the media becomes the truth"? Have we forgotten that it was always the victim who was to blame for the military action?
Today we have "breaking news" repeated on the half hour worldwide by major TV stations? Is this the Orwellian future?
d. Never in the history of journalism during a military aggression on a sovereign state were the words "United Nations" and "UN Security Council" deleted so soon.
e. Never in professional reporting were the words: "we heard rumors", "it has been said", "probably", "it can be presumed", "it can be expected", "we heard stories", "there is a pattern to the stories so they must be true", "one must assume" etc. repeated so frequently.
f. We do not believe that unconfirmed stories should be broadcasted in the media since they tend to incriminate without proof or trial. Civilized people call such stories lies and propaganda!
g. Who has the right to destroy radio and TV broadcasting
centers in anywhere in the world. Is this not murdering a basic human right
to hear all sides and be informed? Does this human right apply to all nations
or only the chosen few? Skill, knowledge, expertise, independence, attitude
and open-mindedness define the essence of an intellectual. These are undoubtedly
universal values in Poland, UK, Spain, USA, France, Netherlands, Russia,
Korea, Germany, Japan, Israel, Iran, Brazil, Egypt, all over the world
Yugoslavia and Serbia, too. Leading politicians, governments, army headquarters, big businesses, powerful media are bare fact at the end of millenium. They function by
their own autonomous rules, proclaimed strategies and concepts, designed goals and objectives. They have their own set of "rules" and "objectives". Their rules are not universally accepted.
a. We believe that there are no good or bad nations, that there are no nations that deserve collective punishment and need to perish for the world to be a better place to live in.
b. More than half of a century after World War II the human race hoped that militarism, "right of might", genocide, destruction and military retaliation were forever gone from the international community. Unfortunately, we all were wrong.
c. Dark clouds have gathered over Europe and history repeats itself. For the third time in this century Yugoslavia, a small multiethnic country, has been criminally attacked by the largest existing military force of today.
d. More than 500 million people living in the richest
and technically most advanced countries have set out to destroy a small
country of barely 12 million people, that suffered five years of devastating
international sanctions bringing it to the verge of poverty
and economic collapse.
e. It is this same country, that in spite of economic devastation, became home to more than 600,000 refugees from other parts of former Yugoslavia the past five years. All these facts are well documented in the UNHCR.
NATO, a military organization that has no place in the world of today and especially not in united Europe, has disregarded its own Treaty and attacked with all its might a sovereign state that is one of the founders of the UN. NATO member states have violated their own Constitutions, International Law and the UN Charter.
a. A military alliance, totally out of control, has set out to implement a New World Order, and any country out-of-line has to be punished and destroyed. Yugoslavia has been chosen as an example.
b. Though, we should not forget that within its internationally recognized boundaries it is the duty and right of every country to fight against terrorism and separatism.
c. No self-respecting country would allow any of its ethnical minorities to form liberation armies within its boundaries, to kill and kidnap civilians and officers of the law, to impose taxes and to plunder.
d. There were more than 1,200 independent OECD observers from many countries in Kosovo 10 days before the bombing started and in their daily reports there is no mention of a humanitarian catastrophe or refugees leaving their homes.
e. They were well informed that more than 300 policemen were murdered and 180 civilians abducted and many more killed since the formation of the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA).
f. More than 100 policemen were killed and 20 soldiers kidnapped since the Yugoslav army withdrew after the Holbrook-Milosevic agreement.
g. More than 100 law-abiding Albanians citizens were executed by the KLA in that period.
h. The observers knew the facts and were ordered to leave, the bombing started and so did the misery, suffering and destruction
i. The Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) is trained, armed and stationed in another country (Albania) under NATO supervision. What should any self-respecting country do in face of these facts?
j. The KLA does not represent the Albanian population that has been living together with the Serbs for centuries. Someone's unfounded dream of independence and struggle for power and profit has turned other peoples lives into nightmares.
Skepticism and/or criticism define standpoint of an intellectual with regard to mentioned. Always and everywhere. Successful cooperation and numerous goals achieved mostly in the last three years, while our country, Yugoslavia, was under unjust, though devastating, UN Economic Sanctions, combined with orchestrated political and cultural rejection, should, as we see it, represent common ideas, attitudes, merits and ideals.
As a part of international medical communities medical professionals from Yugoslavia have in the past successfully:
a. Formed institutions and centers to achieve and maintain diagnostic and therapeutic results within international standards.
b. Organized national professional association, courses and schools, fully in accordance with international standards.
c. Started and enlarged memberships in international professional associations.
d. Organized visiting professorship by internationally recognized authorities, within Universities throughout Yugoslavia.
e. Published journals with world known authorities within the International Editorial Boards.
f. Organized national and regional professional, topic-related conferences introducing internationally recognized faculties.
g. Chaired and being invited lecturers within international professional conferences.
Yugoslav doctors, medical associations and institutions are a part of Europe and the world. Not only for reasons of common tradition or geography, but even more as a feeling of common past and future and due to shared concepts.
You are a medical professional. You have your own judgement - use it.
You do not need to be convinced by anyone.
a. All men are created equal and must have equal rights to live with dignity and prosper in peace, to raise their children without fear and to work together for a better future, regardless of their ethnical origin, the language they speak, the religion they practice or politics they espouse.
b. Colleagues and friends, please bear in mind that bombing is never legal, there is no such thing as humanitarian bombing and bombing cannot resolve humanitarian crises.
c. Bombs are made to kill people and destroy what took generations to build.
d. Never in human history was there bombing of a country or area without the outpouring of refugees. Who in his right mind wants his family to live in an area that is being randomly bombed? Do you really believe that refugees will return while bombing lasts?
e. Does anyone speak of the refugees from all over Serbia? Do serbian women and children have to be bombed and killed?
f. Bombs do not differentiate between ethnical groups, women, children and newborn babies as well as between military and civilian targets.
Do we as humanitarians and scientists believe that there are genetically predetermined evil nations?
a. Can we sit and watch a nation being Satanized?
b. There are laws in every civilized country forbidding the branding of ethnical groups! Do they not apply to the Serbs?
c. Is not everyone innocent until proven guilty or are the Serbs and exception?
d. Unfortunately, it is necessary to Satanize a nation so that all actions taken against it are justified. If an animal species was treated in this manner animal rights protection groups would react!
Has the propaganda machinery murdered our conscience?
a. Can you perceive the cynicism of someone convincing you that you are being bombed for your own good?
b. Is it not cynicism that you are being told that no one has a quarrel with you but that they are just destroying your country and children's future so that you live a happier life ever after?
c. Can you believe that bombing one nation will make another nation happier and prosperous? Does bombing and destroying nations promote mutual understanding and international cooperation?
We, Yugoslav doctors do not think so.
a. It takes a deranged mind in NATO and the so called "world media" to name the aggression on a sovereign country "strikes on Yugoslavia". Does that not resemble the name of a computer or video game, the only difference being that it is real people like you and us dying here.
b. To NATO generals it is a game; after the bombing they go home and teach their children the meaning of morality and boast about the degree of "inflicted destruction", "neutralized targets" and "success rate". These generals are, in their spare time, probably members of some humanitarian organization because it is good for PR.
c. Who in his right state of mind can call the barbarous murdering of innocent civilians by rockets launched 1,000 km away "collateral damage"?
d. Who can call the complete destruction of a nation "achievement of objectives" and "success"?
e. Does the word "target" or "military objective" describe
the place where people live? Does anyone ever talk about the people of
Serbia or they too are only "targets"?
Do we as humanitarians believe that the "credibility of NATO" is worth sacrificing one human life? We do not!
Yugoslavia is inhabited by 26 different nationalities. It is them and their ancestors that build all these so-called "legitimate targets". Who has a right to destroy their work. It took a lot of years of hard work and sacrifice, idealism and good will to erect every building and it take barbarians only a few seconds and one bomb to destroy it.
a. There is no end to barbarism and cynicism of irresponsible
NATO generals when they destroy schools, hospitals, factories, libraries,
bridges etc. for the good of mankind.
b. There are more than 100 elementary and secondary schools destroyed and an entire generation of innocent kids is not attending school, because the semester cannot commence when bombs fall from the sky.
c. The destruction of civilian factories is so immense that the workers have chosen to protect them with their bodies. Without the factories they have no future anyway; they cannot feed their families.
d. Are you not aware that the self imposed "external wall of sanctions" by the US has turned Yugoslavia into a country with the largest unemployment rate in Europe and that, as a result of the bombing so far, another 250,000 workers have literally lost their means for supporting their families over night?
e. Do normal people call this a humanitarian catastrophe?
Doctors, we are humanitarians and people devoted to saving lives, not destroying them, to create, not to destruct, "to serve" the human race.
We oppose violence and solemnly believe that the responsibility for crimes against mankind is individual and such should be the just and legal punishment. No one should escape his responsibility and no one can be pardoned, regardless of nationality, rank and status.
This world belongs to all of us and we have to protect it against war mongers. We cannot let irresponsible people destroy the future of our children. We cannot sit and watch disputes be settled by force.
This is the time to act.
In this time of madness and violence, we, doctors all over the world, have a special task.
It is our duty to speak up against violence, military intervention, killing and destruction. If we do not speak now it will seriously jeopardize our prestige, our efforts and energy we put into each and every day of our professional engagement.
a. It will be uttermost mockery to watch the destruction of houses and send in blankets and tents as humanitarian aid.
b. Shall we sit and watch healthy people be mutilated and crippled by bombs and send them free crutches and prosthesis?
c. Do we want to watch people loose their eyesight and then teach them to read in Braille?
d. Do we want to see the creation of orphans and than send them to an orphanage?
e. Shall we offer free psychiatric counseling to generations permanently damaged by the sound of wailing air raid sirens and falling bombs?
f. Have we all forgotten what Europe went through a little over half a century ago?
For all of us in the medical profession, this is the time to show just how great humanitarians we are. We are sworn to do so.
We have moral integrity, prestige and we have the influence.
We have to help stop the violence and destruction. We have to stand for the inherent right of people to live in their homes whoever they may be and wherever their homes are. We have an everlasting obligation to ensure that no one has a right to bomb, kill or intimidate anyone or to destroy anybody's future. We cannot close our eyes and pretend not to see genocide. If we do not act now our children will not forgive us.
Let people know the real facts. They will form their opinion and they will understand. The "black and white" picture of the Serbs is not convincing.
NATO aggression on Yugoslavia and already caused disastrous consequences to country and nation might now, and not for the first time in modern history, symbolize forthcoming changes of our fatigued civilization.
Let us fight for peace together, let us put an end to violence, destruction and hatred. It is never too late for peace negotiations and reconciliation.
Let us, as many times before, make our profession proud and dignified. Let us really serve humanity.
UHJ - Yugoslav Surgical Association
JUEH - Yugoslav Association for Endoscopic Surgery
YU - GHK - Yugoslav GastroSurgical Club
ACI - Acta Chirurgica Iugoslavica
YUGEA - Yugoslav Gastroenterological Association
ON BEHALF OF YUGOSLAV SURGEONS AND GASTROENTEROLOGISTS
P.S. The letter you just read has been written in a standardized manner in accordance with its purpose and occasion. You will understand that this fact has nothing to do with all the qualities of intensive personal communication we shared in the past, whatsoever.
P.S.S. Facts concerning disastrous consequences on infrastructure, industry and real humanitarian catastrophe of the whole nation were no accentuated within this letter, in accordance to our general idea to address you in the context of values we share, as already mentioned. If, however, you have enough energy and time to get yourself acquainted to one different truth about this horrifying war catastrophe as a closing curtain of the XX century in the very heart of Europe, some useful addresses could be find enclosed.
ANY COMMENT, PROPOSAL OR ACTION YOU COULD SUGGEST WOULD BE HIGHLY APPRECIATED.
WE CAN BE REACHED on following ADDRESSES:
Brought up in a spirit of our Oath - spirit of love, helping,
respect, understanding - these days I am trying to figure out the secret
reasons for you absolute silence and absence of a single word against this
insane war and devastation, murders of innocent civilians, women and children,
destruction of homes, schools and hospitals which are vanishing
in flames. I reckon I could remind you that the human's worst fear is the fear of war,
followed by the fear from malignant disease. In this moment, do you suffer these fears? Do you fear the consequences your silent approval of the war can cause in the future, baring in mind that this approval was given by you - the intellectual elite of your country? Are you worried that extensive use of forbidden weapons such as uranium bullets and cluster bombs will increase radioactivity and lead to the increase of morbidity of malignant
diseases? I guess not, because everything is taking place far enough from you, somewhere on Balkans, in seriously ill Europe? Still far enough? If the aggression is justified, war progressive, bombardment a ticket for the better future, as your governments are endlessly repeating, like as you haven't figured that out yourselves, than really, peace, agreements, understanding as an alternative is completely useless burden for the humanity on the edge of a new millennia. With new wars we shall enter new
century! Dispose the useless peace! I suppose you also believe that this crusade will bring moral benefits and forgiveness for all the sufferings of countries you have conquered in the past against their will. War unmasks hidden, often irrational and exaggerated hate. War brings only victims, casualties, diseases, starved people on all sides regardless to
nationality. War obeys only the right of power, but obviously not the right of argument, humanity and common sense.
Do you, a doctor and a humanist, consider that joining the powerful minority in your country, which imposes war and aggression, will clear the moral responsibility and guilt, which will accompany you for the rest of your life? Is this too optimistic vision? Do you so deeply believe in words of others, as you have none, and do you believe that is the right way to escape from painful but sobering truth?
Sooner than you might think, in a mater of months, maybe weeks, your child might be forced to take active part in this insanity, holding a gun instead of pen, mouse or book, and awaiting bullet to end his life. And your child might be sacrificed to the altar of the sick ambitions and interests of people in power who as a rule avoided military service themselves?
Will you still believe what you are told, or your personal interest will overcome the war rhetoric and phrases about forcing wellbeing to other country of those who make decisions in your name?
Your reputation and the honour of your profession, years of scientific and academic education, gives room for different, more human approach through attempts to uncover the real facts. That has been proven to be the only way of gaining self-respect and adopting high moral standards.
For the end, I would quote the words of one of the greatest minds Earth ever had, Albert Einstein: "Persons of low moral were always attracted to power".
I do hope that sobering time for Europe will come before it is too late.
Milan B. Jovanovic
Assistant Professor of Otolaryngology and Maxillofacial
University of Belgrade
Department of Otorhinolaryngology, Maxillofacial and Cervical Pathology,
Zemun Clinical and Hospital Centre, Belgrade
Secretary of Yugoslav Association of Otorhinolaryngologists