Peace First is the first point of the Unified Platform. Gary Swing is a Colorado candidate who bravely ran for Congress twice as a Green Party member with the full support of the New Progressive Alliance. He ran as a Green Party candidate in 1996, 2010, 2012, and 2014. Though unfunded, Gary worked tirelessly against great odds to get out unpleasant truths both major parties ignored.
The owner of a bumper sticker, “Another Democrat for Peace” was unaware that waging war has been a bipartisan tradition for some time as evidenced by this article by Gary Swing. Though written in 2006, it is perhaps even more relevant today because of increasing continuous war. The point Gary is trying to make is engaging in extensive and expanding war activities is more than not being perfect. It should disqualify candidates such as Bernie Sanders who votes enthusiastically for expanded war and crimes against Gaza. For more extensive documentation see Continuous Wars.
Below is the article Gary Swing wrote.
Remember the widely popular bumper sticker slogan after Bill Clinton was impeached for lying about his affair with Monica Lewinski? "When Clinton Lied, Nobody Died."
In March 2006, I wrote this editorial:
WHEN CLINTON LIED, YUGOSLAVIA DIED
When former Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic died on March 11, the mass media renewed its demonization of Milosevic and its deliberate distortion of the truth about NATO's attack against Yugoslavia. Using the false pretext of "humanitarian intervention," NATO forces led by the U.S. under the command of General Wesley Clark committed the worst war crimes in the Yugoslavian conflict that climaxed with NATO's 78 day aerial bombardment of civilian targets in Serbia and Kosovo in 1999. Serbians were more often the victims of "ethnic cleansing" by U.S. allies, rather than its perpetrators.
Historian Michael Parenti's 2000 book, To Kill A Nation: The Attack on Yugoslavia, debunked media disinformation about the conflict in the former Yugoslavia. Parenti's articles "The Rational Destruction of Yugoslavia" and "The Demonization of Slobodan Milosevic" can be read here.
More than 150 articles about the history of the conflict are indexed here.
More documentation is available here, including a complaint filed by international human rights lawyers, charging 67 NATO leaders with war crimes. The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, which is financed almost entirely by the United States, refused to consider these charges against NATO.
Throughout the 1990s, the United States sought to destabilize and dismember Yugoslavia in order to privatize its state-run industries and financial sector and dismantle its social service programs, thereby transferring Yugoslavia's wealth to transnational corporations. In November 1990, Congress passed the 1991 Foreign Operations Appropriations Act, mandating that any part of Yugoslavia failing to secede within six months would lose U.S. financial support. The U.S. then financed separatist movements in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Macedonia, and Kosovo, consistently backing the most fascistic elements in a strategy of "divide and conquer."
Bill Clinton labeled Milosevic "a new Hitler," while supporting Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic who was a convicted World War II Nazi war criminal, and Croatian President Franjo Tudjman, who wrote a book (Wastelands of Historical Truth) praising Hitler and advocating genocide. Izetbegovic sought to create an Islamic theocracy.
The Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), identified as a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department and a major heroin trafficker by Europol, was financed and trained by Osama bin Laden's "al-Qaeda" network and the CIA.
Sensational media accusations of genocide by Serbian forces were not substantiated by the most extensive crime scene investigation in history. Alleged mass graves containing hundreds of thousands of bodies were not found when NATO forces occupied Kosovo. Forced deportation of ethnic Albanians from Kosovo did not begin until after NATO started bombing. Serbs were denounced in the western media for massacres in Sarajevo in 1992, 1994, and 1995 that United Nations' investigators attributed to Bosnian Muslims.
From 1991 to 1995, Croatia committed the most substantial "ethnic cleansing" of the former Yugoslavia's civil war. Croatia depopulated the Krajina of half a million Serbs through forced emigration and massacres under the direction of U.S. military and CIA officers.
The primary war crime charge against Milosevic preceding NATO's carpet bombing concerned the Racak "massacre" of January, 1999. American envoy William Walker claimed that Serbian police had executed 45 Albanian peasants in the village of Racak in Kosovo. French journalists on the scene and Walker's own Kosovo Verification Mission monitors found no evidence of massacred civilians. Independent autopsies indicated that the corpses were KLA fighters killed in combat, who were later moved to a ditch to simulate a massacre. European media widely challenged Walker's story, but the U.S. media only published his version.
Walker had been the U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador from 1988 to 1992 at the height of U.S. backed death squad killings there. Walker was allied with drug and arms trafficker Roberto d'Aubuisson, the most notorious death squad leader in El Salvador, who had hired the sharpshooter who killed Archbishop Romero in 1980. From 1980 to 1994, the U.S. provided more than $6 billion in military aid to El Salvador.
Three days after Walker's Racak accusations, Secretary of State Madeline Albright issued an ultimatum. Milosevic must accept NATO military occupation of all of Yugoslavia and independence for Kosovo, or Serbia would be bombed. Milosevic rejected this ultimatum, offering a counterproposal that the U.S. rejected.
From March 24 to June 10, 1999, U.S. led NATO military forces dropped 20,000 tons of bombs on Yugoslavia. NATO bombed television stations, factories, power plants, gas, oil, and water supplies, sewage treatment plants, public housing, refineries, warehouses, agricultural facilities, roads, bridges, railways, daycare centers, hospitals, more than 200 schools, and a convoy of Albanian refugees. NATO commander Wesley Clark said the aim of the air war was to "demolish, destroy, devastate, degrade, and ultimately eliminate the essential infrastructure" of Yugoslavia.
The U.S. dropped cluster bombs on Yugoslavia and exposed millions of people to depleted uranium. Unexploded cluster bombs scatter as land mines that blast apart children who pick them up. Depleted uranium weapons spread cancer-causing radioactive contamination that lasts for billions of years. NATO used toxic nerve gas, black napalm, sterilization chemicals, and sprays to poison Yugoslav crops. NATO forces devised the technique of bombing a civilian target, waiting fifteen minutes, and then bombing again to kill rescue workers.
NATO attacked Yugoslavia without the consent of any of its own parliaments, violating the NATO treaty, Article One of the U.S. Constitution, the United Nations Charter, the Geneva Conventions, and the Nuremberg Principles.
A popular "liberal" bumper sticker slogan erroneously proclaims: "When Clinton Lied, Nobody Died." Yet within a four-month period, the Clinton Administration bombed Sudan, Afghanistan, Iraq, and Yugoslavia, and waged covert wars in Angola, Mexico, Columbia, and East Timor. These crimes against humanity were marketed with a web of lies thrust forth by Slick Willie. Nevertheless, in the lunatic asylum of American politics, Bill Clinton's worst transgression as president was his interest in White House intern Monica Lewinski's sexual services, not his wholesale slaughter of innocent civilians in the service of transnational corporate interests.
The Yugoslav conflict enabled the U.S. to establish military bases in Kosovo, Albania, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Hungary, Bosnia, and Croatia. By 2002, the U.S. military had troops in 147 countries, keeping the world safe from democracy.
Thank you very much for your work in posting this article from Gary Swing. Thank you also for including a link to “A Legal Framework for Just Military Action”. The legal framework provides real and powerful leverage to break the stranglehold of the military-industrial complex.
Following my signature below is a link to another important editorial about Nato’s bombing of Serbia in 1999. The violence and chaos in the world following Nato’s bombing of Serbia have matched James Bissett’s predictions as others have followed suit in pursuing a “might makes right” policy.
Kim Maurice Swift
“To their everlasting shame, our Nato leaders have chosen war over peace in Kosovo. They have abandoned diplomacy in favour of bloodshed. They have taken us back to the Cold War and the arms race. They have smashed the framework of world security. They have guaranteed that we will start the new century as we did this one, with killing and carnage. They have left us with a terrible legacy. With six months to go before the millennium, they have taken us back to barbarism.”
From “Nato’s Barbarism” in the National Post of Toronto, Canada, on May 31, 1999
By James Bissett, former Canadian ambassador to Yugoslavia (1990-1992)