ac on Mon, 3 May 1999 21:52:18 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> action against the war in Kosovo Autonoom Centrum

Sirens for peace

Today, Monday 3rd May 1999 we are sounding the alarm in Amsterdam because of
the war that is going on in Kosovo. A war that the Netherlands have a direct
part in.  We will be using sirens and playing anti war songs to sound the alarm
at dozens of locations throughout the city.

The reasons that have been given to us for the war by politicians and the
military are very questionable.  The "ethnic cleansing" that was already going
on in Kosovo has not prevented by the air bombardments but has only been
accelerated by them.  For the sake of clarity we stress here that we are
totally against Milosevic's  policy of  "ethnic cleansing".  However, bombs are
not the answer to that.  The war in Kosovo is the end result of  foreign
policies in the Balkans that have been failing for years.   Policies of pure
self interest that mean that Milosevic, just like Saddam Hussein, can be
changed from one day to the other from an ally and opposite equal to the new
incarnation of Hitler.  The same polities of self interest that have lead to
Turkey, a fellow NATO partner, being left undisturbed to carry out the
destruction of thousands of Kurdish villages and the forced exodus of two
million Kurds from south east Turkey.  Up until now the results of the Nato
operation in the Balkans can be said to have been disastrous.  A large part of
the Kosovan people has been forced to leave their country,  the democratic
opposition in Yugoslavia has been washed away  in the rain of bombs and
instability in the region has increased.  Aside from the fact that war is not a
solution  institutions such as the United Nations as well as the national
governments of participating countries have been ignored and a political and
military elite have been given a free hand to declare war.  It seems as if
democracy is on the retreat at the end of this century.  The only thing that
has to be taken into account is public opinion that in the short term is easy
to manipulate through propoganda and military control of sources of
information.  Even Groen Links (Green Left political party) and parts of the
old peace movement have traded their pacifism in for war mongering.  The costs
of this war and its aftermath will be enormous, they have already reached
billions of guilders which will have to be met by the tax payers.  The business
world on the other hand, in particular the weapons trade, can expect  record
profits.  It would have been far better had all of this money been invested  in
a politics of peace based upon the following  principles: Support for
democratic opposition in Yugoslavia, and encouragement of economic development
whilst holding the importance of human rights above that of economic interests.
Had that been done the chances for peace in Kosovo as well as many other
countries would have been visibly greater.

Today we will make a noise against war and for peace. 

Three free independent radio stations are broadcasting from 17.30 till 18.30 pm
the alarm and the anti war songs on 96.3 FM (Radio de Vrije Keyzer), 97.3 FM
(Radio Patapoe) and 99.3 FM (Radio 100)

Autonoom Centrum

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