Volume 92, Issue 94

Thursday, March 25, 1999


Editorial Board 1998-99

Early action could bring peace

Editorial Cartoon

Early action could bring peace

Fighting in Kosovo, Serbia is under way and the threat of escalation is very real.

The saddest fact is it has come down to military action. For months the United Nations have been seeking a peaceful solution to the problems in Kosovo and for a variety of reasons, too large to get into in this space, those attempts have failed.

Many opponents of the military action led by the North Atlantic Treaty Organization will cite they are trying to deter human rights violations with a human rights violation – potentially bombing innocent civilians who have no connection to this war other than their geographic location.

The reality is all other forms of action have been exhausted over a lengthy period of time and the reason they are now just deciding to use force is because this fact has been taken into consideration.

Nobody, including the "gung ho" Americans, wanted it to come to this, but it seems there is no other choice.

Ethnic Albanians in Kosovo have been the targets of Serbian persecution for far too long, attempting to ethnically cleanse their small little corner of the world. In today's day and age, this is horribly wrong.

Many would say if this is the case, then why are they trying to save people from dying by possibly endangering the lives of more people? It's a case where fire must be fought with fire in order to prevent the flames from spreading.

It has become painfully clear that Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic has no intentions of relenting, as he did with Bosnia in 1995 and therefore the bloody war continued as Kosovo was continuously bombarded. Once the United Nations watch dog left the area because they realized their presence was not deterring the offensive, Milosevic escalated it.

The decision to start bombing the Serbs was weighed heavily. United States President Bill Clinton has said inaction is a worse scenario than action. Unfortunately, Mr. Clinton is correct and there is no turning back now.

Force must be used to prevent the bloodshed of many more innocent people. Sacrifices must now be made, for the hope things can be made better by this action.

War has never been an answer to solving the world's problems and military action should be an absolute last resort in any instance. However, in this case war is necessary, not to solve problems, but to at least force Milosevic to end his attacks on Kosovo and begin the healing process.

This is a sad case where hopefully two wrongs will make a right.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999