July 27th 2010 12:36:59 AM
In my sporadic, haphazard compilations and citations of movies and TV shows that utilize the handy Serb as villain — which, incidentally, includes the first season of “24″ — I neglected to include a whopper: “The Rock,” a 1996 movie starring Sean Connery and Nicolas Cage. Here is what Stella Jatras wrote about it in 2002: “Another one of Hollywood’s anti-Serb war movie[s], ‘The Rock,’ portrays American Serbs as terrorists who mail booby-trapped toys to Bosnian Muslim children.”
In that scene, Cage and a partner have to defuse a bomb contained in a box that reads “Aid to Bosnia” in English and “Freedom or Death” in Cyrillic. Cage explains, “There are half a million Serbs in the U.S. Serbs don’t like Bosnians.” Before getting to the bomb, Cage removes a doll sitting on top of it. The doll releases something similar to sarin gas.
Here is a video of the scene, thanks to John Bosnitch’s posting it:
Back to Stella Jatras’s article:
However, The Houston Chronicle of 17, February 1996 titled, “NATO forces uncover [Iranian] terrorist training camp in Bosnia,” wrote: “It doesn’t take a genius to figure out what we found here is an abomination – clearly terrorist training activities,” said U.S. Adm. Leighton Smith, commander of NATO forces in Bosnia, as he toured the area. “No one can escape the obvious, that there is a terrorist training activity going on in this building and it has direct association with people in the government.
“A makeup room showed charts instructing how to change eye color using contact lenses, peroxide bottles to alter hair color, and a dozen beards and mustaches to hide the appearance. In classrooms, instructions had laid out mock-ups of installation. Notebooks detailed the daily lives of possible targets, and manuals showed how to build bombs out of children’s toys.”
“There is no military value to these types of devices; rigging toys is an act of terror,” said Col. Brian Hoey, a NATO spokesman. His fellow spokesman, Col. John T. Kirkwood added, “I never saw John Wayne rip the head off a plastic dog and throw it.”
So as we know, not only do filmmakers make up almost as many lies about Serbs as our politicians and news media, but they similarly incorporate the same inversions — that is, accusing Serbs of perpetrating what they were the victims of. Victims of the methodologies of the people we say they targeted with such methods. The raid of the Muslim camp happened in February of 1996, and the movie was released in mid-June of the same year. One wonders whether there was, as commonly happens, some special last-minute re-shooting to incorporate this scene, or whether one of the many Croatians in Hollywood was among the writers on the project and wrote this into the script much earlier, aware long before NATO that these things went on in Bosnia, where Croats were initially allied in the Serb-killing.
Below are just some excerpts from other articles referencing the real-life incident:
“Al-Qaida still poses a threat in Bosnia Expert says U.S. let terrorists gain foothold”
by Elizabeth Sullivan, 6 April 2002, The Cleveland Plain Dealer
U.S. officials looked the other way a decade ago when thousands of Arab and Iranian militants streamed into Bosnia to help the Muslims fight the Serbs.
That indifference was grounded in a belief that the militants were serving U.S. war aims.
But it also let al-Qaida terrorists gain a foothold in Bosnia, experts say.
In February 1996, several months after the war ended, NATO forces raided a terrorist training camp in central Bosnia and arrested 11 people, including three Iranians. Found at the camp was a photograph of the late Ayatollah Khomeini, the revolutionary leader of Iran, along with weapons, terrorism training manuals, booby-trapped toys and bomb parts.
That raid was “the first military action” NATO ground troops took in Bosnia, said Ivo Daalder, then running Balkans policy for the National Security Council at the White House.
Many Bosnians still regard the Iranians warmly as “their true friends,” Daalder adds. “The larger lesson is if you leave people to fend for themselves, and offer them no support, they’re going to look for their allies anywhere they can find them,” he says. […]
(I think he just said that if you don’t help the Muslims with their jihads, they’ll turn to the people it makes more sense for them to turn to…the ones they’ll eventually turn to anyway.)
“Bosnian terror school raided NATO says Iranian experts trained government agents to use banned war tactics” by Laurent Rebours; Associated Press, 17 February 1996 in Rocky Mountain News
A swift, bloodless raid on a quiet ski chalet exposed what NATO forces say was a terrorist school where Iranians trained Bosnian government agents.
The raiders seized high-powered weapons and explosives, booby-trapped toys and detailed kidnap plans.
NATO displayed the find Friday. It appeared to show Bosnian authorities in flagrant violation of the troubled peace treaty that NATO troops are trying to enforce. They detained 11 heavily armed men, including three with Iranian papers.
“No one can escape the obvious, that this is a terrorist training activity going on in this building and it has direct association with people in the government,” said U.S. Adm. Leighton Smith, commander of NATO forces in Bosnia.
Speaking to reporters Friday, the day after the raid, he called the white, three-story chalet “an abomination.”
Smith and other American officers showed reporters documents that they said proved that three of the men detained are Iranians who were training agents for the Bosnian Interior Ministry, which runs the national police force. NATO officials said the other eight are Bosnians…[T]he raid [was] near Fojnica, 20 miles west of Sarajevo….
The Bosnian government protested the operation, saying it was “unnecessary and inappropriate” and claiming that the chalet was used to train “special anti-terror units of the Interior Ministry to arrest war criminals.”
Inside the chalet, Smith showed reporters a rack of 60 automatic weapons, rocket-propelled grenade launchers and a sniper rifle with a long green silencer. The arsenal also included hand grenades, detonators, blasting caps and explosives.
On a table was a small red car and other children’s toys, shampoo bottles and other household goods wired with explosives, as well as a model of a civilian house that a serviceman described as a “mock-up for an assassination.”
“The terrorists obviously didn’t get any classes on the Geneva Convention,” which bans assassinations and attacks on civilians, he said. “But they did, this picture indicates, show a new and useful way to blow a child’s sneakered foot off,” the American said, pointing to a diagram showing a child’s foot hitting a pressure-activated bomb.
“SCHOOL FOR TERRORISTS RAIDED ARMS FOUND IN BOSNIAN CHALET”
By LAURENT REBOURS, The Associated Press, 17 February 1996 in The Bergen County Record
…Smith said he had telephoned President Alija Izetbegovic after the raid, and that the Bosnian leader “related to me his conviction that this was an old training activity, that it was in fact being closed down, and that the people we detained here were here to remove all the equipment.”
The Bosnian government previously said that all foreign forces who had fought alongside the rival factions had left the country — in compliance with the peace accord which set a Jan. 17 deadline for their departure — and said that any who remained would become law-abiding citizens.
Inside the chalet, American servicemen guided journalists through two rooms with tables bearing bombs, detonators, booby-trapped toys and toiletries, and documents.
Meanwhile, I’ve mentioned the American propaganda film “Behind Enemy Lines” (2001) only in passing, but Stella Jatras in the same piece as above (”Behind Enemy Lines: Fact or Fiction?”) describes fully the farce not only that the movie was (a film made after Bill Clinton’s suggestion that such a film be made), but the farce that the incident itself was. What was reported and therefore what Americans swallowed bore no resemblance to what really happened in the “rescue” of Air Force Captain Scott O’Grady. (Pathetically and shamefully, the same July 2007 issue of Amerian Legion magazine that was decent enough to run my article about the real Kosovo, a few pages earlier ran a story — unbeknownst to me — regurgitating the official O’Grady fairy tale in which the captain spends six days in cold Bosnian forests, subsisting on bugs and grass as he successfully “hides” from Serbian forces until found — “gaunt and wild-eyed” — by a 40-aircraft American armada of Marines.
When this sort of thing goes unchecked — as all Balkan lies do — what then happens is that these people think they can run for office (see Wesley Clark and Joe DioGuardi, the KLA proxy who is considering running for the Senate this year.) And so last year Scott O’Grady was contemplating a Senate run in Texas.
In her letter to the editors of The Air Force Times last August, Jatras wrote:
FYI: My husband flew F4s in Vietnam. At the time of Scott O’Grady’s rescue, I was in constant contact with Col. David Hackworth. Hack sent me an email that he had received regarding O’Grady that confirmed O’Grady was living in “comfort” in the hands of the Serbs. David Hackworth’s “Wanted: Guns for Hire,” is an example of the flawed foreign policy regarding the conflict in Yugoslavia which should be of interest to you. See [here]. It will give you a different perspective of what the American people were being told about the war.
An unpublished 2007 letter to American Legion magazine by author and lecturer Bill Dorich — who three days after O’Grady went down wrote the White House that he’d been contacted by the Bosnian Serbs to negotiate the airman’s release — gives more details:
…O’Grady was captured by the Serbs and as one of the most prolific Serbian journalists in the United States I was contacted by the Serbian military to make arrangements for his safe return as the Serbs were fearful that the Muslims would capture and murder O’Grady in order to blame the Serbs.
Congressman Randy Cunningham of San Diego and Duncan Hunter of Los Angeles put together a Congressional delegation with myself included and we were to leave that week for the release of O’Grady into their custody. Two days later, a secret deal was obviously made between the State Department and Milosevic and our trip was suddenly cancelled. I was told by Cunningham [that I was not to talk about it and] that an explanation would follow — none ever did. The news of O’Grady’s [rescue] hit the wire service that Friday evening. During the Saturday morning CNN news conference, O’Grady’s commanding officer gave the location of his [rescue] as, “Just south of Bihac, about 10 miles from the Croatian border.”
No explanation was offered in this Legion article or in the Discovery Channel special on March 30th, 2001 of how O’Grady managed to travel 87 miles in six nights from Morkenic Grad where his parachute came down in hostile Serb-controlled territory to Bihac. This translates into 14.5 miles per night, or 1.8 miles per hour during darkness, indicating that O’Grady would have been jogging at that rate of speed in unfamiliar territory where he miraculously avoided Serbian troops and thousands of land mines.
In his first CNN interview O’Grady told the world how the “Cows [that] came near me each night were so friendly I named them” he boasted. Why in hell didn’t he milk them instead of “eating bugs and leaves” as he embellished his story? Babies survive on cow’s milk for more than a year yet stupid O’Grady could not make it for 6 days?
Are we Americans so desperate for heroes that we need to resort to immoral fiction?…One of the most grotesque State Department lies of the Bosnian Civil War took place in August, 1995. The headline read: “Five UN Monitors Tortured, Mutilated by Serbs.” The article said, “their bodies were mutilated beyond recognition.” A week later the Serbs released these 5 UN monitors to the Spanish Embassy, unharmed! Such headlines…[are] much like the demonization your article did to 10 million Serbs. There are 13 Serbian American recipients of the Congressional Medal of Honor. This represents one award for every 150,000 Serbs in America, our allies in two World Wars. Would the Legion please name me one single Croatian, Albanian or Muslim recipient of the Congressional Medal?
Your article would have made Goebbels proud.
(To piece together how the “rescue” may have gone down, and close the gap between the seemingly incompatible deal that our politicians had struck and the rescuers’ detailed version of how they “rescued” O’Grady, see here. It turns out that the Serbs found him quickly enough after he went down, then after making a deal with the U.S. plunked him down 60-80 miles away from where they found him, so that the Americans could “rescue” him and Clinton could shine.)
But back to the film. Its release was sped up by two months, so that it could capitalize on and feed the patriotism that swept the country for about a year starting on September 11, 2001. So that, ironically, the movie was timed to an event in which Americans were attacked by the same jihad the Serbs had been dealing with domestically for a decade — and for which the movie was villifying them. So let’s fully absorb the big picture here: Muslims attack the U.S. and we’re still releasing movies pointing the finger at Serbs.
The part of the Jatras article on O’Grady that I mainly wanted to include was this real-life scene for one viewer after the film ended:
The following incident happened to a friend after seeing Behind Enemy Lines. It reveals the extent of hatred that our politicians and a willing media have successfully instilled into the hearts and minds of the American people, including some of our GIs.
THESE ARE HIS WORDS:
“Dear Stella. You might already be aware of this movie but in case you aren’t I will inform you! Tonight I had the unfortunate experience of watching a big box office hit at the movie theaters. The movie – ‘Behind Enemy Lines.’ It was about the war in Bosnia, it made the Serbs look like evil barbaric monsters and the muslims like helpless victims!! It was really horrible the way it made the Serbs look like. I have seen many W.W.2 movies about the German Nazis but this made the Serbs look more evil than the Nazis! It’s one of the most popular movies in America right now and everybody is talking about how great a movie it is.
“It’s truly unbelievable, the demonization of the Serbian people still to this day continues non-stop! Could you imagine Stella if you and I were Serbian? We would have to hide our identity because everyone thinks we’re ruthless baby killers! This is too much and it upsets me very much. After the movie was over there were some military guys walking out of the theater discussing the film, they were saying ‘after we finish off Bin Laden and the Taliban we should go back to the balkans and finally finish off those Serb bastards’! Can you believe that? Unreal. I responded to the dumb idiots by saying ‘it’s ok for the U.S. to kill muslims because we are fighting the terrorists of Sept.11 but it’s not ok for the Serbs to defend themselves from the very same type of Islamic terrorism, and for 10 years and still going to this day, Sept.11 was only one day, the Serbs have been fighting these terrorists for 10 years and going!’ They responded to me by saying ‘F… the Serbs, a good Serb is a dead Serb.’
“Stella, this is the power of the media propaganda. They have made the American people loathe the Serbs!
“I’m very upset at their comments and about this movie, sometimes I feel like giving up and stop talking about the Serbs and Yugoslavia, I get too emotional about it and it’s probably unhealthy for me! I don’t know, I feel like I’m up against the whole world.”
I recently got an email from the Serbian proprietor of a blog called CHETNIXPLOITATION, which he (Vladimir) describes this way:
My friends and I have started a blog that is dedicated to a new movie genre — anti Serbian movies. We have already [written] many reviews of American, Croatian and Muslim anti-Serb films (”The Hunting Party,” “Defendor,” “Grbavica”…).
I am sending to you our introduction (UVODNO SLOVO). It is translated by GOOGLE translate but I hope you can get a picture about our goals with this blog.
1st What is chetnixploitation (pronunciation: četniksploitejšn)?
The term was first used by blogger Bobby Peru in a comentary of the film Grbavica by Aleksandar Janjic. A more precise definition follows:
Chetnixploitation, noun: Chetnixploitation is a collective term for primarily movies in which mostly naive and one-sided, with premeditation or from laziness/stupidity/ignorance, show the wars in former Yugoslavia and their consequences for the common man [with] grotesque [simplification] so that all the evils and horrors mostly blame the Serbs, ie. ‘Chetniks’ while at the same time relativiz[ing], or reduc[ing], or completely den[ying] responsibility [for] participation in the horrors [by] the other party [Croatians and Bosnians].
These are films in which in the quasi-artistic (and actually more or less cleverly disguised pamphlets) way, delays and ‘proves’ black and white images from the Western media during the conflict, and long after its termination, with pre-assigned roles, and beyond doubt that are clearly [delineated] in two camps:
- Serbs (”Chetniks”) = aggressors, war criminals, rapists and maniacs, robbers, abductors of innocent lives, the terrorists and sadist persons with eyes bloody from rage and madness, blood-thirsty; werewolves.
- Serbian victims (or Croats, Bosnians, Albanians) = passive, poor, unarmed, defenseless, naked and barefoot, made up exclusively of women (raped, tortured …) and children (orphans, crying, poor innocent …), sad person, suffering, faces in tears, martyrs; sheep.
These are films that exploit national prejudice and created a media image of Serbs as criminals by duty, and show (or, in clever examples suggest) their primary (or sole) responsibility for all the horrors of war.
These are films that exploit willingness of some European funds and festivals to promote this kind of story, with the kind of unilateralism (and even this was hidden) and to occasionally give even some prestigious awards. Despite these awards, it is usually inartistic, distorted pamphlets whose criminal, anti-artistic and anti-human discourse will be revealed on this blog.
2nd What Chetnixploitation (blog) is?
…Besides entertainment, the blog has an educational purpose, because it wants to draw attention of movie fans to [an] anti-movie, criminal trend of media victimization of one people (here: Serbian) through seemingly innocent, only superficially speaking ‘objective’, ‘warm human stories’ (the usual victims and the usual suspects).
3rd What Chetnixploitation is NOT?
The purpose of this blog is not to deal in a serious way with war [or to] examine the role of anyone in it.
Chetnixploitation does not deal with actual “Chetniks” and also does not deal with crimes that have happened in these parts — just the way they are portrayed in domestic and foreign films. Thus, for example, if we hit [filmmaker] Jasmila Zbanic and her ‘movies’, this does not mean to deny or justify the rape of women. Neither men, for that matter.
We are aware that this is sensitive, and do not expect a uniform understanding of our efforts: however, here we will try to avoid unilateralism and superficiality and insulting…
Vladimir ended with a personal note to me, which I wanted to share since the dilemma that the Serbian people face within their own country is similar to what Israelis and Americans are facing:
Your struggle to tell the truth about wars in Balkans and to speak in American media about an injustice that has been done to us by the Western states, is very appreciated among ordinary Serbs. Unfortunately, we can read your articles in Serbia only online or in a few independent newspapers, as official Serbian media is under absolute control of our antiserbian government.
And because of that, many Serbs do not know anything about the brave and honest members of Jewish people like you, Jared Israel,Peter North,Nathan Pearlstein, and others who are fighting in the Western media for the Serbs, risk their jobs and careers,and receive death threats from islamic fundamentalists,Croatian nazis and Albanian mobsters.
The biggest shame is that you never received a reward or recognition for your work from official Serbian state,as you deserved.
But please do not think we are ungrateful just because official Serbia is making ceremonies honoring NATO generals and Serbian enemies instead of Serbian friends like you are. Ordinary Serbs can never forget our foreign friends who were with us when it was difficult in our history…
Indeed, I recently met some of the types of Serbs who have “friends” in the U.S. State Department and go to dinners and other events sponsored by that traitorous body. Let me be clear. If you’re a Serb who has friends in the State Dept., you are no friend to the Serbs. One wonders if the 19th century Serbian prophet Mitar Tarabich had such Serbs in mind when he predicted:
The Serbs will separate from each other, and they will say: “I am not a Serb, I am not a Serb.” The unholy one will infiltrate this nation and bed with Serbian sisters, mothers and wives. He will sire such children that among the Serbs, since the beginning of the world, these will be the worst of offspring. Only weaklings will be born, and nobody will be strong enough to give a birth to a real hero.