For past ten-something days CNN has been reporting NATO bombing attacks on Bosnian Serb targets. Targets are almost always "air- defense systems." Even cruise missiles were used in at least one instance. "Stealth" fighters f-117 were not yet used due to Russian objections. Moreover, Yeltsin seems ready to declare a resurrection of the cold war any time.
Bosnian government can't complain: NATO bombs the Serbs, and that's what they wanted, didn't they? Air-defense systems are but of no concern to Bosnians, since they have no aviation. They are probably more concerned with that other, less sophisticated, gun & dagger component of Serbian Army - invisible to supersonic fighter pilots.
Those are, however, *not* bombed: the 300 or so artillery pieces and tanks ringing Sarajevo - the weapons Mladic has been told to pull back from the 12.5-mile-wide U.N. exclusion zone around the city - have NOT been targeted.
Clinton reveals in his new role of victorious Commander in Chief. Definitely the right timing. It worked for Bush. It might work for him.
Journalists are beaming with satisfaction. Finally something to report from there.
Iraq however had more air-defense systems than former Yugoslavia or Serbia ever had, and it took "allies" less time to destroy them. Also, what would Serbia do with so many air-defense systems there? Those systems are useless against either Bosnian or Croat Army, and Serbs generally did not try to shoot down NATO planes before this bombing spree (which given this enormity of their air-defense readiness, they probably could).
So, what does NATO shoot at?
Apparently, civilian targets are shot only by mistake. Although it does not matter, since those civilians are Serbs, and Serbs are "the bad guys", so nobody really cares what happen to them. Although nobody doubts that some Serbs must have been diemboweled in this dense NATO air campaign, we didn't see a drop of Serbian blood on TV (and we are used on watching puddles of Bosnian Muslim blood on Sarajevo's pavement). It is more that NATO pilots took this like a video-game in which shooting a moving icon with red cross is considered negative points, as a sort of an incentive to develop precision.
Current NATO maneuvres in Bosnia are played with live ammo, and with civilians on ground as a reference. Yeltsin's reaction drags Bosnian Serbs deeper in recalcitrancy. Russians again, like so many time in history, promissed Serbs to back them up when they decided to stand up against the world. And again they'd turn their backs on Serbs, minding their own interest. It is sad how Serbs still just don't get it. The only reason why Yeltsin is mad is because NATO apparently doesn't let him to play in the same sandbox.
If NATO manages to destroy the remaining few bridges over river Drina, the Mason-Dixon line of the Yugoslav civil war, there will be no more road link beteween Bosnian Serbs and Serbia proper, and new and probably more advanced air-defense systems won't be able to make their way from Moscow to Banja Luka. Embargo is of course a farce: all embargos are already lifted unilateraly - Bosnia and Croatia are being armed by various players in the West, and Serbs are being armed by Russia. The only thing is that we don't call it "cold war" any more. Now, we call it PARTNERSHIP.
A corporate effort to test new weapons. Yeltsin cries time-out, not foul. He needs time to deliver new stuff to Serbs. And he thinks that NATO has to give him a break - hell, what kind of partners would they be, anyway? Russia has a big, clueless defense industry to feed, too. And NATO eagerly awaits new Russian systems to test its airplanes against. They both need this war.
So, Russia will agree on use of f-117, and West will agree to halt the bombing. Once new Russian systems are in place (and Milosevic collects his "finders" fee for a long-term lease of Bosnia to world's military-industrial complex as a test poligon for conventional weaponry), a lone shell falling on let's say this time downtown Tuzla will do the trick getting NATO to resume air-raids (remember: Mladic's real weapons of destruction are still intact).
Why aren't civilians warned? Because then there'd be no victims, no "parental advisory" news on CNN, and no public approval of bombing campaign, which we don't want to happen, do we? It is too good for business: just watch stock indexes and dollar, everything is up.