American Sniper: Nation’s Pride – Slaying Savages and the Importance of Education

The above is a parody “making-of” film for Nation’s Pride, the feature made by Nazi propagandists in Quentin Tarantino’s dark comedy, Inglourious Basterds.  Nation’s Pride dramatizes the achievements of the deadliest sniper of the Third Reich.  It is an expression of overflowing German patriotism for their champion, who assists in the German invasion of a neighboring country by killing hundreds of soldiers resisting the German occupation.

The actor who plays the sniper, while heroically picking off the savages trying to kill him, gives the sense that the psychological toll of killing is far outweighed by his satisfaction in knowing that he is serving a just cause; serving his country; doing “good”.

Like all invasions and acts of violence, from states down to neighborhood gangs, Germany’s were justified on the grounds of responsibility to protect.  Germans were saving helpless people from imminent massacre at the hands of terrorists and brutal, criminal dictators and regimes – a pretext for which evidence can always be found, in any country.  Analyst John Glaser points out that “Hitler justified his invasion of Czechoslovakia by invoking ‘the security of more than 3,000,000 human beings’ who ‘have been maltreated in the unworthiest manner, tortured … [and denied] the right of self-determination.’”  The Germans had the ability, so they had to “do something” to help those poor people (and maybe, just incidentally, look after German interests a bit along the way).

Standing on thousands of years of European history, the Nazis used all the stock terms to dehumanize the “bad” people, the targets, in the countries they invaded, making sure to separate them from the “good” people they, the self-appointed (and, for years, US-backed) “exceptional” guardians of world peace, were protecting.

Jews were among the “savages” from whom Germany was protecting everyone.  Germany’s plan was to confine the Jewish savages to “reservations”, for forced labor and as a solution to the “territorial issue”, as was done by Europeans to the indigenous people of the Americas and often admired by Hitler himself.   Had things turned out differently, perhaps today in Germany there would be Jews living on reservations like native Americans do in the US, but in 1942 with major pressure mounting against Germany, the Nazi scheme morphed, as the preeminent Holocaust scholar Raul Hilberg documents, into an attempt at outright extermination of the Jews, resulting in approximately two thirds of Europe’s “savage” Jewish population being wiped out through disease, starvation, over-work, and “direct” murder.

The image of the “savage”, Robert F. Berkhofer notes, was originally created to “rationalize European conquest” (24).  While the main goal of the Spanish genocide against and enslavement of the indigenous of the Americas, corralling them into forced death-labor camps, was profit, the main goal of the British/US colonial forces towards the indigenous peoples, as John Quincy Adams and many others noted, was “exterminating [them] with … merciless and perfidious cruelty” for the sake of stealing their land by force and replacing them.  Thus tens of millions of native people in the territories gradually deemed “USA” (hundreds of millions in the Americas overall) were reduced by approximately 95%, with (happily) introduced disease and inflicted conditions, as in the Jewish Holocaust, killing most, and genocide picking up the slack.

On both the Nazi and European/US genocide campaigns, David E. Stannard thus notes, citing Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, that the buildup of the forces of evil that led to the Jewish Holocaust began thousands of years ago in Europe, then, expanding outwards, marched through and set up camp in the “Americas” before returning to Germany, after which they would continue to visit many other locales, from Kenya to Korea to Vietnam, Middle East, and more, the people in every location continuing to be referred to as “savages”, “Indians”, and the like, by US/European forces (253).

“Deadliest sniper in US history” Chris Kyle, the “legend” who performed “miracles” during the invasion in which he partook, uses the word “savage” over and over again throughout his autobiography, American Sniper, specifying that he and his fellows used the term to describe the “bad” and “evil” people in Iraq – those resisting the US invaders.  “Savage” for Kyle refers to both resisters in general (he describes “slaying” large numbers of the “savages”) and individuals Kyle, from his obvious moral pedestal, finds particularly odious.  Mysteriously, the choice term is not used to describe a single European/American invader, whether as hoards (many Iraqis drew unfavorable comparisons between US and previous Mongol invaders) or individual invaders who, in addition to the highest crime, aggression, famously committed such saintly acts as torture, terrorism, murder, and raping and killing Iraqi children (2, 3).  With the breezy assurance of a devout Christian raised in one of the rare countries on earth that, with clinical calculation and personal approval from the president, still implements the archaic “death penalty”, Kyle’s “savages” are strictly those his criminal commanders instructed him to kill, illegal death sentences he carried out with cheerful efficiency and purported “love”, calling to mind the self-described feelings of the Saudi holy executioner about his sacred work.

As Wiesel noted of the Holocaust inflicted on Jewish and other savages, and Stannard documents of both it and the European holocaust inflicted on indigenous “American” savages, the roots of these unfathomable campaigns of evil are one and the same with the roots of Christianity and European “civilization”.

Kyle, one of thousands of true-believing US “mujahideen”, holy warriors, who eagerly and enthusiastically carried out the illegal orders of fundamentalist Christian militant George Bush Jr., uses the word “God” dozens and dozens of times in his autobiography, over and over and over again insisting upon his deep belief in the Christian deity and its earthly incarnation, Jesus, while at the same time, even on the same page, noting that mass murder, for him, was incredibly easy.  The inter-weaving of casual notes about 1) the ease and, indeed, “love” of “slaying” hundreds of people, 2) his unquestionable judgments about his victims as evil-doers whom he needed to kill, and 3) his deep, profound love for God, Jesus, and guns, illustrates his self-conception as a holy warrior.  He drives home his self-image by explaining that, while he, like everyone, will be judged before being admitted to Heaven or condemned to Hell, killing will not be one of the acts for which God judges him; he already knows God put him on earth to be the best savage-sniper in American history.

Kyle, and, for that matter, Bush Jr. and many of his adherents/apologists, are examples of the dire need for education (yes, Bush went to an ivy league school – look where that led).  These people, largely because of communications they thought they had with a glowing man hovering above planet Earth and his deceased son, carried out or participated in the killing and ravaging of millions of people – the worst crime of the 21st century, from which many other evils continue to flow, which is one of the main, specific reasons why war of aggression was outlawed in the Nuremberg proceedings.

Evil flourished and found expression in Kyle and Bush Jr., but are people inherently evil?  Hitler, had he been raised by wolves, would have turned out at least somewhat different, wouldn’t he?  (Or would he be out in the woods exterminating squirrels, or something?)  Is there some universe in which, due to different circumstances, Hitler turned out to be an ice cream man?  Abe Lincoln thought so, arguing that slave owners were simply abolitionists born into different circumstances.  If there is some chance that education – altering our circumstances – can prevent evil from taking hold, shouldn’t it be pursued and encouraged by everyone?

Had people like Kyle, Bush Jr., and their contemporaries/predecessors been effectively reached, early and often, by information and logic, millions of people might still be alive and safe – that is, safer.  There is no such thing as total safety, but once the US invaded Iraq again in 2003, it dragged Iraq further and further down, further and further into chaos, until finally it was reduced to its current status as home of the “world’s worst city”, as a UK research company put it.

Education could, potentially, have led Kyle and Bush Jr. away from the trappings of illogic and evil supremacist ideology that, as Wiesel and Stannard note, have for thousands of years been enmeshed in their religion and culture, taking on religious but also secular-religious/faith-based forms, as exhibited by people like Sam Harris and his cadre, who purport to reject religion but are religious fanatics, devout followers of the religions of nationalism and supremacy.  These fundamentalists call perhaps even more often and with deadlier results for the implementation of the murder of lesser peoples that their supreme, elevated position, like that of their openly religious counterparts, mandates.

Perhaps Kyle and Bush Jr. could have read, in addition to what we all read and are exposed to growing up and in daily life, the works of historians and philosophers cited above, and others such as Johnson, Parenti, Chomsky, and learned that the USA, starting in the late 1950s, not only helped install Saddam Hussein into power in Iraq through a mass murder campaign, but teamed up with him, openly, from 1982 into 1990, calling him a “moderate” (sound familiar?), giving him diplomatic, political, material, and intelligence support to help him torture and kill millions of Iraqis, Iranians, and Kurds, many with gas and other illegal weapons provided by US and European governments and companies, then coordinated with Hussein again in the mid-90s, killing hundreds of thousands of children, to crush an uprising that may well have overthrown him.

Perhaps the prize sniper and his chief commander could have discovered at a young age – there is nothing complicated about it once the information is found – that humanitarian motives are simply cancelled out as reasons for US invasions/violence when one allows into the equation that the US continually and happily perpetrates or acts as an accomplice in the same and worse crimes, usually at the same time, as the ones it, in the style of the Nazis and all aggressors, pretends to intervene to save people from.  The US can’t really have been going after Hussein for the stated reason, crimes he committed in 1982, otherwise the US would first have arrested Saddam’s American government and corporate accomplices and sponsors of the crimes he committed in 1982.  Or, for another example, if the true US motive was actually to “save” people in Yugoslavia from ethnic cleansing in the 1990s, the US wouldn’t have been 1) the principal (and almost sole) supporter of the far worse (137) ethnic cleansing being carried out by Turkey at the same time against the Kurds, or 2) an even bigger supporter of the even worse mass murder campaign, arguably genocide, being carried out, also through the 90s, by Indonesia against East Timorese peasants, exterminating almost a third of the total population.

But perhaps, like many of their peers, Kyle and Bush Jr. were aware of all of this (or would have been unaffected by it), and were simply predators seeking loot, pillage, pleasure, approval of a deity, or some combination thereof, in which case education must reach enough people to reign in these criminals and bring them to justice when and if they manage to kill and ruin; to deal with “evil” in professor emeritus of psychology Phillip Zimbardo’s structural, non-religious sense of the word.

Or, we can keep doing what Scottish comedian Frankie Boyle pointed out when he said the USA will invade your country, kill all your people, then make a movie about how tough the experience was for US soldiers (while large segments of US society laud and idolize them, and their commanders, as the Nation’s Pride).

Robert Barsocchini focuses on global force dynamics and writes professionally for the film industry.  He is a regular contributor to  Washington’s Blog, and is published in Counter Currents, Global Research, State of Globe, Blacklisted News, LewRockwell.com, DanSanchez.me, Information Clearing House, Press TV, and other outlets.  Also see: Hillary Clinton’s Record of Support for War and other Depravities.  Follow Robert and his UK-based colleague, Dean Robinson, on Twitter.

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  • Rev Dow Jones

    These our troopian, snaggle toothed, cadaver peeing, ear
    slicing, finger lopping, trophy touting, uninformed uniformed, drug addled,
    gnat brained, baby raping, rednecked trailer trash, ethnic mutt, cast off,
    Pentacon Kill Industries demobbed filth, addicted to the pink mist blown from a
    bullet blasted human skull of an extinguished life are crawling all over
    shithole Merca. They are militarized pigs and ravenously hungry like blood
    deprived ghouls stalking your neighborhood now in their Homeland Gestapo
    uniforms just itching for the chance to suck some brains in an action replay of
    their rape of every country where the evil United Snakes has ever crawled.

    It’s graveyard season as the fiat petroscrip Saudi Mercan
    dollah collapses in the Potemkin Village of rigged market
    “capitalism” and there aint no, escape from the legions of hungry
    vengeful ghouls at your local boarded up mega mall coz that was just a
    Hollyweird fantasy too.

    Bring out yer dead……

    • ClubToTheHead

      Excellent example of free speech, that right lain dormant so long until the recent racist rights of Charlie Hebdo made it popular again.

      But you left out skull fucking,

  • Carl_Herman

    Strong work, Robert; thank you. These Orwellian crimes “covered” by or criminally-complicit media will only end by arresting the obvious leaders.

  • John O’Neill

    Did you write this working off of Seth Rogen’s tweet or are you pretending to have come up with the Inglourious Basterds reference all by yourself?

    Robert Barsocchini, you’re simply another protected POS enjoying the freedoms secured by women and men in uniform like Chris Kyle. Enjoy it.

    • ClubToTheHead

      Since most Americans approve of torture and consider themselves to be
      Patriotic, this joke should be well received:

      Prisoner is getting a rectal feeding.

      Patriot asks Prisoner if he would like some
      coffee.

      Prisoner nods yes.

      Funnel up the ass, the coffee is poured in
      and the Prisoner screams.

      Patriot asks if the coffee is too hot.

      Prisoner screams, NO! TOO SWEET! TOO SWEET!

    • Robert Barsocchini

      Exactly the opposite: you are enjoying the freedoms (such as not being snatched into forced labor and being sent to die in foreign country for the benefit of some company owners), earned for you by hundreds of years of resistance. Enjoy 🙂

    • truth

      You mean “rights” of corporations and elites to pillage and conquer secured by gullible women and men in uniform. Smedley, a great “war” Hero, would like a word with you.

    • Fred Flinstone

      Ummm, it ain’t that hard to make the link between american sniper and the propaganda in Inglorious Bastards. It’s much more likely for someone to have seen both movies that for someone to have read some comedian’s tweet. Especially if they’s highly educated and don’t waste their time reading things like comedian tweets

  • truth

    It really saddens me. When I saw an article, similar to the contents of this one, on Glenn Greenwald’s site, commentators were lambasting how “The Sniper” was just a movie, just “entertainment” and to deal with it.

    Sure its “just a movie” but there are no Hollywood movies of a Brave
    Iraqi man deciding to take up arms against invaders and avenge the death
    of his loved ones. Where is their story? Movies like “The Sniper” are meant to make a beleaguered American populace “feel good” about a little victory of a sniper, in an illegal war.

    Some people were going so far as to suggest the author didn’t understand that Kyle was defending the author’s “freedom” (more like freeDUMBS). It astounds me that there really are people out that that deluded, believing that illegal invasion and crimes against humanity are for the purpose of defending “freedoms” back home.

    Kyle was a pour soul like many other soldiers propagandized for war, taught to hate their enemy, which makes it easier to kill someone in battle. As Smedley said, soldiers like Kyle are nothing more than Soldiers fighting for Corporations and Elite interests; they do not fight for United States Freedom, nor its constitution. People like Bowe Bergdahl, that left his base in Afghanistan to be captured, realized that and the American people turned it around saying Bowe was a “coward” or a “traitor.”

  • Calling what happened in Turkey or East Timor “far worse” than what happened in Yugoslavia at the time is certainly debatable.

    And nobody at all claims that the United States intervened there for alturistic reasons, so your argument is a bit of a strawman.

    • Robert Barsocchini

      As for calling them “far worse”, that’s actually political scientist Michael Parenti’s term in his book “The Attack on Yugoslavia”, and he uses it to say US-supported Turkish repression of the Kurds “dwarfed anything the Serbs were accused of perpetrating.”

      As for East Timor, that’s much less debatable. It was just a US-backed force exterminating two hundred thousand people. Less than 1,000 of the US-backed soldiers were killed, i.e. 0.5% of the number of people they slaughtered. Total mass murder operation, which the CIA itself equated to genocide.

      Chomsky, in discussing “comparable or much worse atrocities during the same period [as the attack on Yugoslavia]” being supported by the US, says East Timor is the “most obvious one” – as in most obviously “much worse”.

      As for your statement that nobody at all claims US intervened in Yug for altruistic reasons:

      In same book, Parenti notes of the US actions “all this was done out of humanitarian concern … all in the name of peace, democracy, national security, and humanitarianism … or so we were asked to believe.”

      Chomsky documents same, citing mainstream commentary calling US actions “noble”, having a “saintly glow”, and so on, part of what he calls an “astounding chorus” of self-praise.

      http://www.chomsky.info/articles/200005–.htm

      He has volumes of books, articles, lectures documenting the “humanitarian justifications” constantly given by essentially every leading US official and media partner. One of his books on that is called “The New Military Humanism”.

      But, of course, you can also document, as historian Roxanne Dunbar Ortiz, for example, does, how US/European “humanitarian/altruistic” claims go back as far as is traceable, and continue through today. So, the first seal of British colonists arriving in North America, a seal they created before they left, depicted an indigenous person begging the colonists to “come over and help us”. Thus colonists justified what they were doing on altruistic grounds, and the theme continues today as anyone who ever looks at a newspaper or TV would know.

      In fact humanitarianism was even used to defend slavery – a mainstream argument by slave owners and US government officials was that slavery was done for the benefit of the black slaves.

      • Neither Parenti nor Chomsky are experts with anyexpertise on the former Yugoslavia; and Parenti is an apologist for Milošević and a senior member of the International Committee to Defend Slobodan Milošević. Sorry if I don’t just take their word as holy writ. Chosmky’s interview on RTS is frankly disgraceful and marks his lowest point as far as I am concerned.

        • Robert Barsocchini

          I’m all ears for your first piece of evidence to back up anything you’re saying. I asked once already, this is time two.

          I not only gave you quotations and scholarly sources, but direct examples and numbers, which are also documented, of course, in the sources.

          All you have presented are unsubstantiated claims and ad hominem. Very weak, I’m afraid.

          • You actually asked me for media reports on the motives of the United States in intervening in former Yugoslavia and the FRY. But with pleasure:

            – Michael Parenti’s senior membership in the International Committee to Defend Slobodan Milošević is documented here
            http://www.iacenter.org/bosnia/yugo-milos_903.htm

            – In East Timor, the absolute minimum number of deaths resulting from war, 1974-99, is
            90,800 (i.e. 18,600 civilians killed by all parties and 84,200 who died from hunger and disease, with error margins of +/- 1,000 and +/- 11,000 respectively, for a range of 90,800 – 114,800. The figure may be as high as 183,000.

            http://web.archive.org/web/20080703184208/http://www.ictj.org/static/Timor.CAVR.English/07.3_Forced_Displacement_and_Famine.pdf

            – In Bosnia, the minimum number of deaths resulting from war, 1991-95, is 97,207, excluding those who died from hunger, disease, exposure or other indirect causes of war.

            http://web.archive.org/web/20090911230743/http://www.idc.org.ba/presentation/research_results.htm

            The two sets of figures are not completely comparable, as the figures for East Timor represent scientific estimates with a small margin of error so far as direct war-deaths are concerned, while the figures for Bosnia represent a body count, therefore an absolute minimum. Furthermore, the figures for East Timor include an estimate for deaths from war-related hunger and disease, while the figures for Bosnia do not cover such deaths. Finally, neither the sizes of the East Timorese and Bosnian populations nor the lengths of the two conflicts were equivalent; the deaths in East Timor occurred among a much smaller population over a much longer period of time. But saying that what happened in East Timor was “much worse” than what happened in Yugoslavia is certainly debatable.

            The correct answer is that neither was ‘worse’; only a very cynical, callous or perverse individual would seek to rank two such horrific episodes of mass killing. The figures tell us that both the East Timorese and the Bosnians suffered terribly; to describe the suffering of one as somehow ‘less’ than that of the other is to show a staggering disrespect for the dead.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            Media reports being evidence for what you claimed, which you still haven’t given on that point (3rd time asking) and since it gives you pleasure I’d still enjoy seeing, along with refutations for why the claims I cited for you are Not claims of altruistic intent. (See the links for complete or additional quotes.)

            You need to delineate who was killing who in the conflict as compared to the East Timor invasion. Was one more one-sided than the other?

            International Center for Transitional Justice puts total deaths in Yugoslav wars to “about 140,000”. So about 140,000 vs. up to more than 200,000, with 95% victims of the invaders. Indonesian invading forces lost ~1,000.

            And remember, we are talking about the reasons for the US bombing of Yugoslavia, which is upheld in the US as a great humanitarian intervention. The reason given was the deaths of 2,000 people. Clearly, no matter how you try to minimize East Timor, 2,000 is less.

            Deaths are deaths. Most Jewish deaths in Holocaust were from inflicted conditions, not “violent death”, aka direct murder. They are still victims of the Nazis since they would be alive had Nazis not created those conditions.

            Length of time for killings makes it better or worse, depending on how you look at it. US sustained the killers from the mid seventies to almost the year 2,000.

            But lets take minimum numbers for all the things the US was doing in the cited examples. As you said, the crimes the US was backing were at the very least, as you said, “comparable”, which is a point I also made in the WB post. Even if they are just “comparable”, it cancels the claim of altruistic intent elsewhere.

            And, of course, we never mentioned the possibly millions of people the Indonesian forces had just killed in Indonesia, also with US support, or Rwanda, another “comparable” crime, which the US forced the UN not to intervene in in the 90s during the US “humanitarian” bombing of Yugoslavia. The actual reasons for Yug bombing are discussed in the first minutes of the linked lecture, above.

            Point of comparing is to disprove claimed altruistic motive, which is near historical universal for all such acts. In a way doing this shows more respect for dead than ignoring and letting things like this continue, no? I’m guessing no.

          • I’ve never claimed that the US intervened in Yugoslavia for alturistic reasons. I don’t know anybody who is dumb or naive enough to believe that. The only thing your links ‘prove’ is that some western politicians used humanitarian justifications for the intervention. My point is that your attempts to minimize what happened in Yugoslavia vis-a-vis East Timor and Turkey are baseless.

            The argument that the violence in Yugoslavia was not entirely one-sided could equally be applied to East Timor. In East Timor, just over 70% of directly killed civilians were killed by the Indonesians or by their East Timorese auxiliaries, while 29.6% were killed by the East Timorese resistance. In Bosnia, at least 86% of direct civilian deaths were the work of Serbian forces. In 1975, the year of the Indonesian invasion of East Timor, 49% of civilians killed in East Timor were killed by Fretilin, the East Timorese resistance movement. In no year during the wars in the former Yugoslavia, 1991-99, were non-Serb forces responsible for such a high percentage of civilian deaths.

            Your comparison with Kosovo is disengenious. The death toll for Kosovo you cite occured over the period of 1 year (compared to 25 years in East Timor), and once again only includes direct deaths – not deaths from war-related causes. Such indirect deaths account for over 90% of the total if one accepts your 200,000 figure for East Timor. In the year 1999, the Indonesian army and its East Timorese auxiliaries killed 1,400 – 1,5000 East Timorese civilians according to the CAVR survey, a figure supported by a study carried out by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

            Two scientific studies indicate that approximately 10,356 Kosovo Albanian civilians were killed in the period March-June 1999, or approximately 12,000 Albanians between February 1998 and June 1999. This may be compared with the 18,600 East Timorese civilians killed in the period 1974-99.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            “some western politicians used humanitarian justifications for the intervention” ok so you are changing your stance there.

            One can accept your numbers or not, but let’s just go with what you said before, even ignoring the crimes you aren’t mentioning and more I also never mentioned, and say they are all comparable. Like I just said, this is still my exact point, which is stated in the WB post above. Only thing we are contesting is worse vs comparable.

            Also remember I was talking about the reason for the US bombing, the “2000” deaths.

            Curious now, why do You think the US bombed Yug?

          • The attempt to whitewash Serbian actions by claiming that they were a ‘response’ to KLA attacks once again could equally be made in relation to Indonesian and Turkish actions in Kurdistan and East Timor. This excuse is just a transparant attempt at whitewashing Serbian ethnic cleansing and massacres in Kosova and at blaming the victims.

            The reason for the US bombing was that Sloba was becoming a liability; his actions were destabalizing Macedonia and the US was unwilling to collude in his ethnic cleansing and genocide that was going on in front of the TV cameras.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            “Claiming” or documenting? Hmm. Saying this is a claim reminds me of what mass media does when it reports documented facts it doesn’t like.

            Reasons for US bombing were given by Clinton official after the fact. Quoted in first minute of lecture linked above.

            Appreciate your personal analysis on Chomsky but more interested in facts you presented before. For analysis, prefer scholars.

          • Yes I said Parenti has no expertise on the former Yugoslavia – of course I see no contradiction there. He has no qualifications on the subject never published an article on an academic journal or a book in an academic press. He does not even speak any of the local languages. The ‘committee’ is simply a lobby group, not a scholarly institution – trying to use his membership of this lobby group as proof of his supposed expertise is like saying that a member of the Institute for Historical Review is an expert on the Holocaust simply for being a member of said lobby group.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            Well, there’s that and a PhD in political science from Princeton, multiple books and articles published on the subject, respect from other scholarly sources of different political persuasion. Though I agree, try getting an academic paper approved in a society with a party line opposing what the paper documents. Or ask Norman Finkelstein about that.

            So, again, you are saying US backing of the KLA is a claim, NOT a documented fact? And you are saying KLA was NOT trying to incite a response? Do you also deny that British found at the time that KLA committed most of the killings in the first 10 or so months of the year before the US bombing?

          • Who cares if Parenti has published books and articles on the subject. David Irving has published books on Nazi Germany – that doesn’t make him an expert on the subject.

            Unlike you, I have actually read the British parliamentary report. Firstly, it was not a ‘conclusion’ of an inquiry,
            it was a statement by the foreign minister. The statement (paragraph 34) is
            referring to a specific brief period, the period between the first ceasefire
            on 16 October 1998 and 23 January 1999 (the time of the Racak massacre). It does not include the period of the spring/summer of 1998, where Serbian forces carried out major atrocities against Kosova Albanians. And
            thirdly, it says the majority of violations of the ceasefire and deaths were
            caused by the KLA, not the majority of crimes. In fact, the same source
            (paragraph 55) states that in the period prior to the bombing, ‘The Kosovo
            Albanian population … [was] suffering greater atrocities than the Serb
            population (and KLA attacks were mostly focussed on Serb policemen, while
            Serb action oftenfocussed on unarmed civilians)”

            A few counter questions for you:

            1. Has Michael Parenti ever published a book on the former Yugoslavia in an academic press? Does he speak any of the former Yugoslav languages ? Has he done
            fieldwork in the Balkans ? Or conducted original research on the topic,
            beyond regurgitating (low-quality) English-language sources ? What academic
            publications does he have relating to the Balkans ? If none of these are correct, on what basis does he have any expertise?
            2. If Serbian atrocities against Kosova Albanians are a ‘response’ to KLA attacks, does that mean that Turkish/Indonesian atrocities are also a ‘response’ to Kurdish or East Timorese insurgent activity?
            3. If Serbian atrocities against Kosova Albanians are a ‘response’ to KLA attacks, how does that explain Serbian atrocities in Bosnia and Croatia; or their neo-aparteid rule of Kosova before 1998?

          • Robert Barsocchini

            “Who cares if Parenti has published books and articles on the subject.” Who cares if doctor of poli sci from Yale (not princeton, sorry) has published on the subject? Well, a lot of people, frankly…

            But you can of course peruse his bio/credentials easily on Wikipedia or his website. His expertise is in political science and he has produced scholarly works on varying topics, focusing on US policy but also historical subjects such as the Roman Empire.

            But your ad hominem attack against him is to show that only an “expert” is qualified to say what is worse than 2,000 deaths, the stated reason for the US bombing at the time. I flatly disagree.

            Transitioning from defending against ad hominem:

            I haven’t read the British report? How dare you.

            You can tell me if this is the wrong report, but par 34 is the first article in section called “THE KOSOVO CRISIS AFTER MAY 1997”

            The first act of violence it lists is: 1997 November: KLA attack Serb patrol

            It then follows: 1998

            Escalating violence in Kosovo

            KLA controls large areas of Kosovo

            Serb counter-offensive

          • The short answer is; no Michael Parenti has published a book on the former Yugoslavia in an academic press, does not speak any of the former Yugoslav languages, has not done
            fieldwork in the Balkans, nor conducted original research on the topic, beyond regurgitating (low-quality) English-language sources. The only publication he has relating to the Balkans is his book ‘Death of a Nation: The Attack on Yugoslavia’ published by the far-left publisher Verso and forwarded by Slobodan Milošević himself.

            The book is simply an outright apologia for Milošević and his regime and is simply worthless. Parenti seeks to explain the break-up of Yugoslavia, yet not knowing any of the former-Yugoslav languages, he is limited to English-language sources – his task is therefore as hopeless as that of a historian of the English Civil War who does not read English. Parenti several times refers to the pre-1991 Yugoslavia as the ‘FRY’ (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia), though it was in fact the SFRY (Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia) – the FRY was not proclaimed until April 1992.

            You have simply regurgitated another source which systematically avoiding my points. Once again, this source is simply an outright apologia for Milošević and Serbian nationalism. But I’ll deal with some of it;

            “Tensions between Serbs and ethnic Albanians in Kosovo go back centuries
            and were not the result of Slobodan Milosevic, as many in the West would
            have us believe. Ethnic Albanian terrorism did not begin with the
            Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in the mid 90s, but instead began just
            after Tito’s death.”

            Not a single credible source claims that Serbian-Albanian tensions go back hundreds of years. In fact, you will find it very hard to find any examples of an ethnic clash before the 1870s.

            “According to Branka Magas… Albanian resistance began as early as
            April 1981, just after the death of Tito. Dissident Albanians encouraged
            violence against the Serbs, including the damaging of their factories”
            (Carnegie, 1999)”

            The idea that there was ethnic Albanian terrorism against the Yugoslav state in the 1980s is simply a Serbian nationalist smear. Neadless to say none of your sources provide a single example of it.

            I’ve actually read Branka Magas – and she clearly blame the deterioration of the situation in Kosova on the Serbian side. The ‘resistence’ she is referring to was the 1981 Pristina student protests – during which the Yugoslav security forces killed hundreds of Albanians civilians. She points to this, plus the discriminatory laws enforced against ethnic Albanians, plus the unconstitutional actions of the Milosevic government.

            The second source you link comes from a statement of the ‘International Committee of the Fourth
            International’ – another, Trotskyist group that shilled for Sloba – and continues to revere the memory
            of the rapist, sadist and Saddam-financed thug Gerry Healey. So that’s
            the kind of source that you rely upon in his attempt to rebut me.

            I’ve always found it interesting that far-leftists call the KLA ‘terrorists’. They have a long record of supporting groups with incomparably worse records than the KLA.

            I’ll ask my questions again as you have constantly avoided them;

            1. If Serbian atrocities against Kosova Albanians are a ‘response’ to KLA attacks, does that mean that Turkish/Indonesian atrocities are also a ‘response’ to Kurdish or East Timorese insurgent activity? And why do you mention such insurgent activity in Kosovo but fail to mention in in East Timor, Turkey and Iraq? Or is it a case of when a pro-US regime kills civilians it is wholly to blame, but when an anti-US regime kills civilians it’s the victims who are primarily to blame.
            2. If Serbian atrocities against Kosova Albanians are a ‘response’ to KLA attacks, how does that explain Serbian atrocities in Bosnia and Croatia; or their neo-aparteid rule of Kosova before 1998?

  • artguerrilla

    1. i’m afraid the author is overlooking one unfortunate factoid of our society: approx 25% of all peoples are ‘authoritarians’… i would bet dollars to donut holes that chris kyle was *at least* that (if not a psychopath)…
    authoritarians WANT Big Daddy to make decisions for them: they do everything Big Daddy does, and repeat everything Big Daddy says, and if Big Daddy says to hate and kill X, then they hate and kill X…
    (bearing in mind that *tomorrow* if Big Daddy said we *love* X, then all the good little authoritarians will *love* X, NO QUESTIONS ASKED…)
    2. to all the gummint bots: fuck you…
    3. to all the brainwashed ‘love it or leave it’ dupes, STFU, you stupid shits… your bullshit of ‘yeah, but that psychopath killed and died so YOU could live free and smoke your dope and fuck your mother, you hippie freaktard…’
    wake the fuck up, AIN’T NO ONE -NOT ONE MERCENARY GOON FOR AMERIKA- DIED HEROICALLY in the last 50 or so years to ‘save democracy’, or ‘preserve our way of life’, or ‘kill them over there so we don’t have to kill them here’… bull-fucking-shit…
    lies and propaganda that you authoritarian mouth-breathers are only TOO HAPPY to lap up AS IF you are some kind of ‘true bare-knuckled patriot’, when you are simply STUPID, STUPID, STUPID…
    you are EXACTLY the STUPID, unquestioning type of cannon-fodder Empire LOVES to have in the military, because you are so fucking STUPID, you will do ANYTHING you are told, AND be all righteous about it, BECAUSE YOU ARE TOO STUPID TO RELY ON YOUR OWN MORALITY…
    fucking stupidheads from stupidtown…

  • Josey Montana

    Wow this really sucks. I mean, ya gotta get some things off your chest but this is just a screed – one gratuitous insult after another. I was going to grant you the larger point until you devolved into name calling and bizarre, made-up history.