Curiouser and Curiouser...
jjazz at freenet.hamilton.on.ca
Tue Aug 8 16:04:16 MDT 1995
>From hwfn!mcshub!torn!howland.reston.ans.net!EU.net!news.eunet.fi!anon.penet.fi Tue Aug 8 18:01:20 1995
Message-ID: <033350Z03081995 at anon.penet.fi>
From: an10805 at anon.penet.fi (Vitaca Milut)
Organization: Anonymous forwarding service
Date: Thu, 3 Aug 1995 03:31:22 UTC
Subject: French troops say who's killing civilians
Xref: hwfn soc.culture.yugoslavia:44980 soc.culture.croatia:28256 soc.culture.bosna-herzgvna:29876 soc.culture.europe:46834 bit.listserv.mideur-l:2731 soc.culture.usa:75846
Taken without permission, for "fair use" only:
New York Times
SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina - French peacekeeping troops in the U.N.
unit trying to curtail Bosnian Serb sniping at civilians in Sarajevo
have concluded that until mid-June some gunfire also came from
government soldiers deliberately shooting at their own civilians.
After what it called a "definitive" investigation, a French marine
unit that patrols against snipers said it traced sniper fire to a
building normally occupied by Bosnian soldiers and other security
A senior French officer said: "We find it almost impossible to
believe, but we are sure that it is true."
The officer requested anonymity, saying the findings are politically
sensitive. Six French peacekeepers in the anti-sniping unit who took
part in the investigation were interviewed and were willing to be
identified by name, but their commander, Gen. Herve Gobilliard,
requested that their names be withheld to avoid putting them at risk.
They say the sniper fire from the government position stopped in
mid-June, when, after several months of suspicion that the building
was being used by snipers, a gunman was seen firing from the building.
The officers say they notified the Bosnian army that the sniper was
about to be shot by French troops, as they are authorized to do.
"We were going to kill him just as we shoot Serb snipers," said a
French officer involved in the investigation.
The scenes of civilians cut down on the street have helped build
support for the Bosnian cause.
News photographers often wait near areas most vulnerable to sniper
Members of the U.N. anti-sniping unit, who said they are equipped with
infrared and thermal viewing devices to watch suspected snipers'
nests, said they began their investigation after studying the
trajectory of bullets striking near central Sarajevo. They concluded
that some of the shooting was coming from the former Parliament
building. "It was the only place where some of the snipers could be,"
said a soldier on the investigating team.
The building, about 40 stories high, was badly damaged in fighting in
1992 and is now a position manned by the Bosnian army and security
It is used by Bosnian army snipers to fire on areas held by Serbs,
said a foreign military officer who has inspected the building several
times, and other foreign officers who monitor sniper incidents.
French officers said they came to believe that the same
Bosnian soldiers who shot at Serbs also fired at Bosnian civilians.
To test their suspicions, they said, they set a trap. Beginning on
June 8, they put one of their armored vehicles near the buildings used
by Bosnian Serb snipers, while other vehicles were hidden on either
side of the former Parliament building.
For the next week, officers said, there were many times when no firing
was heard from the Bosnian Serb positions, while shots were heard
coming from the former Parliament building.
Then for three days, for several hours at a time, a U.N. armored
personnel carrier was stationed so it could be clearly seen from the
building. While it was there, no sniper bullets were recorded hitting
in the areas of Sarajevo monitored by the anti-sniping unit. When the
armored personnel carrier was withdrawn, firing directed toward those
areas resumed, French officers said.
Finally, the French said, they began to examine the building with what
they described as very sophisticated optical enhancement devices that
they have only recently received. That was when the gunman was seen,
Though they said they do not keep records of victims of snipers, the
marines said they recall at least two civilians who were hit by
bullets they believe were fired from the former Parliament building
during their investigation.
They said that in the same period they saw bullets fired from the
building strike very close to a number of other civilians, as well as
other bullets that hit U.N. vehicles.
Vitaca Milut (Pronounced: Vitacha Miloot)
An AP News Analysis (Nov. 12, 1994)
Analysts estimate the Bosnian army has about 120,000 troops and
can call on help from another 50,000 members of the Bosnian Croat
militia. The Bosnian Serbs are believed to have about 80,000 troops.
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Jim Jaszewski <jjazz at freenet.hamilton.on.ca>
WWW homepage: <http://www.freenet.hamilton.on.ca/~ab975/Profile.html>
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