Nasa Borba banned by Serbian government

This is nearly as tough to fight as a New York parking ticket. That's why I call DOT/PVB a nationalist-socialist alliance. But as I understood the NATO threat should be off now - didn't they strike some deal - Holbroke and Slobo just a few days ago? Can't believe that Milosevic already did something naughty to get that B52s flyin'. So if there is a deal, then there is no NATO threat, and if there is no NATO threat any more, then there are no legal reasons for the decree to be still in force.

Serbian government, perhaps, has a right to sue Nasa Borba for violating the decree while the NATO threat was plausible (if this can be proven to be true at all), but the government cannot be allowed to confiscate their equipment and list it for sale, expell people on street, seize the premisses, because there is no danger that the crime will repeat. Ok, the government "warned" them. Belgrade seems to be right at the place where Kafka meets Byzant. So, here is Milosevic having a parliament, reminding me of the Roman Senate during Emperor Comodus (they all voted 'yes' when he came once to them and announced that he thought that he had just became one of the Gods), passing his laws. Theoretically, he can eliminate whomever he wants, since he is an absolute ruler.

The best joke on him would be that Holbroke, who is a lawyer, now goes and testifies in Serbian court on the behalf of the Fininvest (Nasa Borba's owner: which should sue the government for backpay, employee benefits, loss of business, every single day of rent, etc.), that there never was a NATO threat, at least not to his recollection. The tapes? Well, he may say that he lied to Slobo in order to obtain a deal - that's not a crime in diplomacy. Slobo should be the first to show understanding for that.

You know that joke about Clinton, Yeltsin, Milosevic and an elephant? Those three somehow got an elephant to care about. First night, Milosevic and Clinton went to a party, and Yeltsin was left in care of the elephant. When they returned, they were almost as drunk as Boris and the elephant. Second night, Yeltsin and Milosevic went to a dance, and when they returned, they found a properly stoned elephant giving a blow job to (equally stoned) Billy with her snout. The third night Clinton and Yelstin went out to have fun, and left Milosevic in care of the elephant. When they returned, they found Milosevic calmly munching on his dinner while watching some soap. The elephant was gone, though. So, they asked Milosevic did he know where did the elephant go? Milosevic, barely raising his head from the sumptuous meal, answered: "What elephant?"

That's how he for months now pronounces how everything is calm on Kosovo, how there is no fighting and how his forces are heading for the barracks, while the villages are burned daily and people executed or expelled to the woods. This law could never come in the effect in the first place, because members from Montenegro were not invited to vote on it, as I understood - this is like if Clinton would pass a law that half of the States were not consulted on, on a secret session of a Democrat minority in Congress. Only, that would probably not cost him just impeachment.

Serbian government should be sued in the civil court for money. The only problem is if there is anything left that can be seized from Milosevic - maybe his villa on Cyprus, or that yacht parked in some Greek port, or that alleged row of rental property in Athens - since Serbian government property abroad is already seized by the sanctions, now it is time to go after his personal effects. Put a yellow tape around his villa, and list it for sale.

Meanwhile, Nasa Borba journalists need new portable and hidable equipment, so they could continue their work. I guess, Holbroke's wife, Kati Marton, who is still on board of the Committee to Protect Journalists should be urged to act in that direction. Perhaps they can find a printer in Montenegro to print what they write? And then smuggle paper back in Belgrade. It is just important not to stop fighting Nazism until it is fully defeated.

Governmental Edict Banning Nasa Borba (Oct. 15):

Republic of Serbia
Ministry of Information
Belgrade, Nemanjina 11
No: 651-03-292/98-01
Date: October 15, 1998

On the grounds of Art. 9 and Art. 7 of the Decree on Special Measures in the Circumstances of NATO's Threats with Arms Attacks against Our Country ("The Official Bulletin of the Republic of Serbia No. 35/98 of October 8, 1998), the Ministry of Information of the Republic of Serbia passes an


  1. The operations related to publishing of the Nasa Borba daily by the Company FININVEST from Novi Sad, Bulevar Oslobodjenja No. 92 are temporarily banned as of October 15, 1998, at 10:00 a.m.

  2. The Publishing Company FININVEST's working facilities are temporarily confiscated, while the equipment used to publish the Nasa Borba daily will be listed in the company's premises.

    The equipment will be kept in the premises of the editor, where from all the persons will be expelled and the premises sealed by an official authorized by the Ministry of Information.

  3. The confiscated equipment will be held by authorized persons.

  4. The ban lasts, while the confiscated equipment cannot be used as long as the Decree is in force.

  5. The copies of the Nasa Borba daily, printed after the passing of this edict, will be expropriated.

  6. A plea concerning this edict can be submitted to the Government of the Republic of Serbia within three days from the day of its receipt.

  7. The edict is operational, while a relevant plea does not postpone its implementation.



    The map of locations of independent electronic media in Serbia. In red are those who are in danger of being shut down by this edict.

    On the grounds of the Decree on Special Measures in the Circumstances of NATO's Threats with Arms Attacks against Our Country and in line with its authority deriving from the Decree, the Ministry of Information of the Republic of Serbia, as the state body in charge of the information issues, has followed the articles published in the Nasa Borba daily from October 9-14, 1998 and concluded that by the published articles your daily has violated the Article 7 of the above Decree.

    The Ministry of Information has assessed that reports as such spread fear, panic and defeatism and act contrary to the resolutions by the Federal Parliament and the People's Assembly of the Republic of Serbia. Also, they have a negative effect on the people's readiness to safeguard the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

    On the basis of Article 9 of the Decree, the Ministry of Information sent you on October 12, 1998, a warning quoting a mass medium's duty to act in line with citizens' rights and liabilities to safeguard the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of the Republic of Serbia and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. You were warned that the Ministry would be forced to temporarily ban your daily and confiscated its assets for the duration of the Decree's legal validity should your practice continue.

    Having considered the articles published in the Nasa Borba daily following the warning, the Ministry decided that your daily still acted contrary to the Article 7 of the Decree.

    As illustrative instances, we are quoting just few examples: The issue of Oct. 14 under the title "Overt State Terrorism" published a release by the Movement to Protect Human Rights, saying:

    "The Movement to Protect Human Rights warns domestic and foreign publics that the regime increasingly incites the hue and cry against all strata of society labeled as `enemies'. There are massive violations of human rights in our country, which are nothing but a large-scale state terrorism with various consequences."

    Such articles containing arbitrary and false arguments that have not been checked out directly effect the spread of fear and panic among the people.

    A report of Oct. 14 by G. Badjaku, titled "Milosevic's Return to Reality" quotes:

    "The KLA political representative, Adem Demaqi, expressed yesterday his satisfaction with NATO's notice to Milosevic, warning him that he might expect a military intervention if he failed to fulfill all the requests by the UN Security Council Resolution within four days.The KLA restrains itself and thus provides an example for the Serbian military and police forces. Should they behave according to that example, a cease-fire would be possible."

    The publishing of invalid political assessments by representatives from terrorist organizations, including the supplement titled "Demaqi's Preconditions", spreads fear, panic and defeatism and is contrary to the resolutions by the Federal Parliament and the People's Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, since non-existent and unrecognized organizations (emphasis added) are thus given an opportunity to jeopardize the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the FR of Yugoslavia.


    Sign indictment against Slobodan Milosevic

    In an article titled "Vietnamese and Albanian Children", published in the Nasa Borba issue of Oct. 14, Jan Briza says:

    "Today's schools in Serbia do not raise humanitarian funds for little Albanians who are struggling for their lives hidden in the woods of the Kosovo mountains. It seems that there is nobody over here to organize such a noble action. Namely, the trouble is that from the regime's viewpoint such a school action is not only unwanted, but also an unimaginable one. For, how to explain to our school children that little Kosovo Albanians, instead in their homes, now live in the open, in the woods and mountains wet with cold autumn rain? What to tell them if they ask who is to blame? And, what to do if they start sympathizing and displaying solidarity with little Albanians? Judging by top officials' statements reported by the state-run media, Albanians have just staged their refuge in the open in order to provoke a NATO military intervention and thus snatch away Kosovo from us. It means that actually they are in no trouble, but just eager to call for the bombing of our children by Americans, Germans and other international community's criminals.Therefore, Albanians are out to get us.However, the truth is that the bad situation in the province has radically worsened in the meantime. The regime is the major culprit, for it was its duty to get mutually bad relations improved, rather than damaged."

    Articles as such, trying to speculate a major issue of an alleged humanitarian catastrophe by the use of pathetic tones and the misuse of children, spread defeatism and act contrary to the Government of the Republic of Serbia's decree.

    In his commentary of Oct. 14 titled "A Dramatic Delay", Zeljko Jovanovic says:

    "We will have still more problems to solve over here. Sandzak waits for its turn."

    This directly effects the territorial integrity and sovereignty of our country. Such reporting by your daily, even after the warning sent to you by this Ministry, constitutes a direct violation of the Article 7 of the Decree. This Ministry's duty, therefore, is to take the measures provided by the Article 9, paragraph 2 of the Decree.

    The ban and the confiscation of the equipment last as long as the Decree is legally valid.

    Signed: Minister Aleksandar Vucic

    ...but the Sandzak still waits its turn, and this decree is just likely to make that turn come rather sooner than later...

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