Yugoslavia: A Warning – Jerusalem Post, April 17, 1995
by Yohanan Ramati, Chairman of Jerusalem Institute for Western Defense

Most Americans believe in justice, democracy, human rights and self-determination. But those who control State Department policy in the Balkans are more concerned with advancing the cause of Islam. Here’s the evidence:

* The recognition of the fundamentalist Islamic regime of Alija Iz[e]tbegovic in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and US efforts to buttress its sovereignty in a “state” where Moslems are in the minority, were never settled on more than 25 percent of the land, and are fighting among themselves.

* The browbeating of Croatia, which has no common interests with the Iz[e]tbegovic regime, into agreeing to a Moslem-Croat Federation in Bosnia-Herzegovina — a federation unlikely to survive, but very likely to undermine stability in the region.

* The ignoring of evidence — even when provided by the UN force — that Serbs were not responsible for specific incidents like the “shell” that “landed” in the Sarajevo marketplace (it was an explosive charge placed on the ground — probably by Moslems) or the “destruction” of the Moslem quarters of Gorazde (in fact the Serb quarters were destroyed). Such incidents were then used as pretexts for military or economic punishment of the Serbs.

* The positive US attitude to Albania and its claims to the Kosovo province of Serbia, which is destabilizing not only Serbia but also Macedonia (where there is a big Albanian minority), and is contrary to the interests of America’s NATO ally, Greece.

The Iz[e]tbegovic regime in Bosnia is no democracy. When the Bosnian Moslem Party of Democratic Action chose its leader in 1990, the moderate businessman Fikret Abdic, who believes in cooperation with both Serbs and Croats, received 48 percent of the votes, compared with less than 39 percent cast for Iz[e]tbegovic. Abdic made the mistake of his life by deciding to stand down.

When Iz[e]tbegovic began to hound him and his supporters, Abdic returned to politics willy-nilly, allying himself with the Bosnian Serbs, and was able to retain the Bihac area of northwestern Bosnia, one of his main strongholds.

However, he found that the West preferred Iz[e]tbegovic’s Islamic fanaticism to his moderation, and was even ready to ignore Iranian and Libyan aid to the regime in Sarajevo.

The US helped Iz[e]tbegovic expel Abdic from Bihac and tried to prevent Abdic and his allies from reconquering it.

This makes the US’s public declarations that it regards Iran, Libya and Islamic fundamentalism as a major danger to the West less than believable. Neither country is subjected to pressures remotely comparable to those on Serbia. Nor is Syria, which harbors HQs of terrorist Islamic organizations, and controls Hizbullah operations in and from Lebanon.

A visitor to Serbia will find most people living on starvation wages of $150 to $200 a month; he’ll also find a flourishing black market, a fuel shortage, and plenty of hatred for Americans (including leaders of American Jewry whose support for Iz[e]tbegovic and the Croats is regarded as inexplicable, and odious in the light of Moslem and Croat murders of Jews during World War II). Israelis are still liked and welcome.

There is real freedom of expression, including the press. Fear of the secret services characteristic of communist regimes in Eastern Europe simply does not exist. One can criticize Milosevic mercilessly, and many do…US policy in the Balkans increases the dangers to Christian Europe and Western culture posed by a rapidly growing Moslem population of some 15 million. These dangers will be enhanced if an Islamic state survives in Bosnia.

This US policy doesn’t stem just from stupidity and shortsightedness. It is being pursued too resolutely and ruthlessly for that. But it clearly serves neither democracy nor the real US national interest. To Israel it is a warning: Treat a pro-Moslem State Department with reserve.

And just an excerpt from a August 11, 1993 article by Ramati, also in Jerusalem Report:

…In the present Yugoslav civil war, every cruelty and crime perpetrated by Serbs has also been perpetrated by Croats and Moslems. Serb refugees out number Croat and Moslem refugees combined! There is no reason to aid the Moslems rather than the others. However, there is every reason for any self-respecting Jew to prefer Serbia’s Milosevic, who is not an anti-Semite, to Bosnia’s Iz[e]tbegovic and Croatia’s Tudjman, who are.

Iz[e]tbegovic has written that Islam should be introduced everywhere, that a Moslem entity should stretch from Morocco to Indonesia, that peace and coexistence between Islam and non-Islamic political institutions is impossible, indeed that Islam does not even permit the existence of an alien ideology on its territory.

Can one blame the Serbs and Croats — the majority of the population in Bosnia-Herzegovina — for rebelling?

So there is ample reason for the Western world not to intervene in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Even the Germans, who triggered the Yugoslav civil war with their recognition of an independent Croatia and Slovenia (in contravention of the Helsinki accords) are having second thoughts about Bosnia.

To the best of my knowledge, the Jewish religion does not prescribe loving your enemy. Yet proportionately many more Jews than Christians act on this principle.

Our enemies never have.

The Serbs helped us in World War II, and have every reason to be our friends. Tudjman and Iz[e]tbegovic will hate us no matter what we do. Let us shed no tears for them.