ex-Yugo statements

Bryan A. Alexander bnalexan at umich.edu
Tue Sep 5 09:20:49 MDT 1995


Nello gives us the succinct statement many of us need: *no side* of this
war is worth our Marxist support.  (Although I would quibble about
Krajina's equal rights to secede - within the Yugoslav constitution
Croatia was a republic, Krajina not) Despite protestations and
explorations of Lenin's early 20th-cent history, it is impossible for us
to hold with, as (I believe) Chris pointed out, either national or
international capital.  The workers have yet to have a serious force.
	I had hopes for the Bosnian army.  Every soldier in it that I have
talked with has been working-class or farmer.  It seems wholly defensive
	(and this partly fromtactical reasons.  An interesting division
of tactics: the Bosnian Srb forces prefer long range engagement, for two
reasons.  They have the long range weapons (rockets, artillery, planes,
etc.); their troops are not so reliable for intense line assaults.  The
BiH regulars are the converse, driving for rapid assaults in direct
fighting, fleeing before Srb artillery gets a fix on 'em.  Their morale
is terrific, but their weapons are awful, short range stuff.  Weaknesses
in the BiH stance: they can't charge artillery positions usually, and,
aside from hit and run missions, cannot really drive back Srbs from their
positions)
	And a crucial difference for those who love, along with Douglas
Hurd, to claim the "atrocities on both sides" line: the BiH state
consistently denounces and tries to punish crimes committed by its troops
- the Karadzic regime does, as we know, quite the opposite.  There are
also those details about cultural extirpation (the Srbs do it, the
Bosnians don't) and sheer quantity... anyway...
	So I had some sympathies for the BiH regs as working class
force.  I'm not too sure anymore.  More research, as Louis will remind
me, awaits.


Bryan Alexander
Department of English
University of Michigan
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