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To:    Mr Richard Calton 9 TV Network, 60 Minutes

From: Mio Ilickovic
prost@fast.net.au

RE:    Your reports from Belgrade

Dear Sir,

A few days ago I saw a video with your report from Belgrade. Frankly, from an Australian correspondant I had expected a more balanced and documented description of the present situation in Yugoslavia and Kosovo. With a simplistic approach you cannot explain a very complex problem. The best way to contribute to a better understanding of the situation in Kosovo and Serbia would be that in your reports you paid more respect to the facts and judgments that history has already proven and to recognize what is propaganda. The propaganda may sometimes be justified in times of war but Australia hasnít been involved in the conflict or associated with NATO. What is the interest to maintain aggressive US and UK propaganda demonizing Serbs, when Australia as you know, has about two hundred thousands citizens with Serbian origin. It is a risk in a multi ethnical country to instigate negative feelings against an other ethnic group.

President Milosevic has the reputation for being an unpredictable, autocratic ruler who posses an inherited Byzantine cleverness and a logic characteristic to Serbís peasants. In your report you are repeating without explanation an old accusation from the war in Bosnia "Milosevic is a butcher" But it is also relevant that from the beginning his policy towards Kosovo was undisputed and supported by almost all major political parties and intellectual elite. That policy has been based on a document called "Memorandum" issued by the Serbian Academy of Science in the early seventies. Certainly Milosevic and his regime are the first guilty for todayís disastrous situation in Kosovo and the region but NATO as well has to acknowledge its own culpability. Using force to save innocent Kosovars NATO has killed one thousand two hundred civilians and wounded thousands and keeps almost ten million people hostages in their own country. Here we have an other illustration of barbaric and inhuman activities, if we like it or not. Furthermore USA and NATO have promoted a group of Albanian drug and arms dealer in a liberation army radicalizing the Albanian population and marginalising moderate Kosovo politicians. It is difficult to explain the fact that in Kosovo USA and NATO are fighting on the same side as Mr. Osman Ben Laden mujahedins!

USA and NATO claim that Mr. Milosevic had always planed to eliminate Albanians from Kosovo and that the traits from NATO have not caused or provoked ethnic cleansing. However the facts suggest a different account. Milosevic revoked Kosovoís autonomy after almost forty years. By 1991 Albanians had established a parallel system of institutions and a de facto autonomy, separate tax, health care and education system, declared independence and ignored Serbiaís sovereignty. They refused to pay electricity, water or to register their cars (now some Albanians arrive on the border without plate). But Mr.Milosevic tolerated de facto autonomy. During this period 1989 Ė1997 no ethnic cleansing or genocide was committed. But KLA acquired arms from Albania and started killing Serbs and moderate Albanians. This time Milosevic responded with the excessive retaliation against KLA and hurt civil population. However he wasnít acting any differently to Israel towards Palestinians or Turkish government against Kurds.

The Federal Government supports NATOís attacks on Serbia. Evermore, Australian intelligence officers are spying for the US and NATO. Which interest should the Government have to adopt such a policy if it is not to follow loyally US line. I didnít notice any serious attempt in the Australian press and TV, including your network, to discuss this government position.

Yours sincerely,

M Ilickovic