29 July 2003

REVIZIJA RACKA

Complete Analysis of the Incident at Racak on Jan. 15, 1999
by Chris Soda

The "Moral High Ground;" Introduction

This is the beginning of a series on the so-called Racak atrocities. Predrag Tosic and myself are introducing new features to our ever-growing list of readers at Yugoslavia Info, including special reports such as this and as well interviews with key players/commentators whose expertise will help all of us better understand the nature of NATO's aggression in the Balkans.

For anyone who has read the forwards/commentary on the Yugoslavia Info site, it is apparent that both Predrag and myself question both the legality of the NATO aggression in the Balkans as well as its "humanitarian" agenda. In particular, many Western news agencies are selectively distributing both false and misleading "coverage" on the Balkans to their respective markets; while not commenting on the reasons for such actions, it is nonetheless apparent that much of this type of "coverage" is based in countries with NATO membership.

For most readers of Western news services, Racak has become synonymous with "atrocity"; so has "Serb", so has "Milosevic"; Albanians are portrayed as "victims" of the "Serbs", etc. I had heard all of this, as well as the opinions of those who thought the incident at Racak on Jan 15/99 was not a "crime against humanity"; but there were a few things I was sure of before embarking on this particular study: (a) The incident at Racak on Jan 15/99 is the only specific, dated charge in the ICTY indictment of Milosevic and four of his aides that is listed as occurring before the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia, and (b) The incident at Racak is the most specifically-mentioned example quoted by both Western politicians and by the Western news agencies of NATO countries, as the "prime example" of Yugoslavian "atrocities" against Albanians which necessitated the NATO bombing campaign.

There is nothing I have found anywhere to justify the NATO bombing campaign on legal grounds; even many quoted supporters of the aggression against Yugoslavia acknowledge the illegality of the strikes (or say nothing at all in this regard - for instance, read: most Canadian parliamentarians) but insist that intervention was necessary on "humanitarian" grounds. And the incident at Racak is apparently the "ace" up the sleeve of the ICTY as well - despite all the much-touted acts of "ethnic cleansing," "atrocities," "crimes against humanity" etc supposedly perpetrated by the Yugoslav government before Mar. 24/99, this particular charge must be seen by the international court as being the most "iron-clad" and easiest to prosecute. It is the first specifically-dated charge in the indictment handed down and is crucial to the NATO-justification school of necessity in initiating these attacks.

Everything stated in this report has been corroborated at least once over, and usually more than once. There are some problems which I'll state at the outset: although I have the comments and positions of many of the actual forensic experts who performed studies on the bodies, I cannot lay my hands on the actual forensic reports. No copies were to be found at the OSCE, University of Pristina, University of Helsinki, University of Nis, NATO, UN, EU or Government of Yugoslavia websites - or anywhere else that I've looked. This absence precludes a vital cross-reference to any definitive Racak study; however, as I say the input of the actual medical staff involved is a matter of public record and was heavily used in segments of this upcoming report. Secondly, I have received no answer from my e-mails to various institutions requesting contact with the medical staff studying the bodies found at Racak. If I ever do hear back in regards to this, I would like to give any or all of them equal time on this site to comment.

Sources used in this report were all taken from the Internet; they are numerous and will be listed at the end of the report.

As I say, the incidents at Racak on Jan 15/99 are crucial to both the whole NATO-justification for bombing , and the whole ICTY indictment. If the incidents which occurred at Racak really were atrocities perpetrated by the Yugoslav government, then NATO will continue to use this to claim
the "moral high ground" in past, present, and future actions in the Balkans; as well, the legitimacy of internationally - judging the leaders and actions of sovereign states will be seen as progress in the pursuit of "justice".

If, on the other hand, the incidents at Racak were not atrocities perpetrated by the Yugoslav government, the NATO-bombers' "house of cards" claiming moral legitimacy falls apart; as well, any past, present, and future actions by NATO in the region will be severely scrutinized for hidden agendas. And if the incidents at Racak on Jan 15/99 are shown not to be atrocities, then the whole question of self-claimed objective international legalities will be shown to be just another link in the chain of selective, biased judgment fueling the same hidden agendas.


The I.C.T.Y. Indictment

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) is an entity established by the UN Security Council in 1993 (Resolution # 827); under the ICTY mandate from the UN, four major types of offences can be prosecuted against individuals for the following acts within the territory of the former Yugoslavia:

(1) Grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions (Article 2)
(2) Violations of the laws or customs of war (Article 3)
(3) Genocide (Article 4)
(4) Crimes against humanity (Article 5)

I share the opinion of many that the UN has no legal or moral authority to selectively pass judgment on anyone, nor to establish institutions of the same. As long as a so-called "world body" is in fact ruled by a veto-wielding minority, it cannot claim that any of its pronouncements are democratic, representative, or capable of justice. Having said that, the ICTY nonetheless is a vital part of the war waged against Yugoslavia since 1991 (and possibly even earlier) and the beginning of UN sanctions; with an ever-increasing budget, from $276,000 (all figures US) in 1993 to over $94,000,000 as of June 1999, this "legal" weapon wields considerable power and respect (unfortunately). The incidents which occurred at Racak as detailed in the ICTY indictment should be analyzed not only in an objective international court of law (still waiting for this one) but in the court of public opinion as well; as I said in Part 1, the legitimacy of the ICTY as a capable and fair arbiter of right and wrong rests with the successful prosecution of those which the ICTY prosecutor (up until recently this was Louise Arbour of Canada) has deemed responsible for what she terms as a Yugoslav-government directed "atrocity" in this village; as well, the constant stream of propaganda against Serbs in general and Milosevic in particular leading up to the so-called "justification" of the NATO air strikes rests with this particular charge.

The full text of the indictment can be found at various Internet sources; I have used parts of the copy from the Jurist Network at http://jurist.law.pitt.edu/indict.htm


The ICTY indictment is dated May 22 1999 and charges Slobodan Milosevic, Milan Milutinovic, Nikola Sainovic, Dragoljub Ojdanic and Vlajko Stojiljkovic with, amongst others, the following:

Under "Charges": Crimes Against Humanity and Violations of the Laws or Customs of War;

(90) Beginning in Jan 1999.... [the five accused] ....planned, instigated, ordered, committed, or otherwise aided and abetted in a campaign of terror and violence directed at Kosovo Albanian citizens living in Kosovo in the FRY. [Federal Republic of Yugoslavia]

(98)a On or about 15 January 1999 in the early morning hours the village of Racak... was attacked by forces of the FRY and Serbia. After shelling by... [Yugoslavian government forces] ...the Serb police entered the village later in the morning and began conducting house-to-house searches. Villagers,
who attempted to flee from the Serb police, were shot throughout [Racak]. A group of approximately 25 men attempted to hide in a building, but were discovered by the Serb police. They were beaten and then were removed to a nearby hill, where the policemen shot and killed them...

The ICTY indictment also refers to Racak in (28): In one such incident on Jan 15, 1999, 45 unarmed Kosovo Albanians were murdered in the village of Racak....

Under the ICTY indictment, under General Allegations(82): All acts and omissions charged as crimes against humanity were part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against the Kosovo Albanian civilian population of Kosovo in the FRY.


General Analysis of the I.C.T.Y. Indictment

General Analysis: The Numbers Game.

This is a general analysis of the ICTY indictment of May 22 1999 charging Milosevic and four others with crimes against humanity , violations of the laws and customs of war, etc.

Before moving directly to the Racak charges, there are other points in the ICTY indictment worth showing as a reference to the cynical nature of these allegations.

In the preamble to the specific charges, there are constant references to the "Autonomous Province of Kosovo"; right away, when I read this, I was suspicious: how could a so-called legal body refer to Kosovo as an "autonomous province" on May 22/99, the date of the ICTY indictment? Autonomy for Kosovo was the main topic at Rambouillet, but there was never any final agreement on the status of Kosovo. There was no legal establishment of autonomy for Kosovo; that the ICTY would refer to Kosovo as such is wrong and casts doubt on its' subsequent statements.

Under (90) in the ICTY indictment, we have this: "Beginning in January 1999... [the 5 accused] ...planned, instigated, ordered, committed, or otherwise aided and abetted in a campaign of terror and violence directed at Kosovo Albanian civilians living in Kosovo in the FRY..."

Again, without offering proof, the ICTY indictment alleges "ethnic cleansing"; the two problems I have with this statement are: (a) the UN states approximately 700,000 Albanians fled Kosovo during the 11 weeks of NATO bombing, but how did these same 700,000 avoid the so-called "ethnic cleansers" for the 11 weeks leading up to the bombing? These 700,000 lived in their homes, not in hiding, in Kosovo and were untouched by the Yugoslav government before March 24/99- hardly victims of any government-sponsored " ethnic cleansing ", as the indictment alleges. (b) The
obvious point is that if this "ethnic cleansing" was done to "...ensure continued Serbian control over ...[Kosovo]..." (in #91 of the indictment), then surely Milosevic and the other accused would have moved the approximately 1.5 million Serbian refugees from Croatia, Bosnia, etc, currently in
Yugoslavia into permanent residence in Kosovo as some sort of resettlement program. With 700,000 Albanians still able to flee their homes in Kosovo, it is very likely that "continued Serbian control by means of ethnic cleansing" was not an issue - at least not on May 22/99, the date of this indictment.

I'm sure readers will find many such "facts" in this indictment; I've only listed a few to show the political nature of this ICTY document. This UN-sponsored attack on Yugoslav leaders is neither factual nor credible with even the most perfunctory glance at its contents - including the Racak
incident:

(98)a "On or about 15 January 1999 in the early morning hours the village of Racak... was attacked by forces of the FRY and Serbia. After shelling by... [government/Yugo] units, the Serb police entered the village later in the morning and began conducting house-to-house searches. Villagers, who attempted to flee from the Serb police, were shot throughout the village. A group of approximately 25 men attempted to hide in a building, but were discovered by the Serb police. They were beaten and then removed to a nearby hill, where the policemen shot and killed them..."

"...a group of 25 men...": A group of 25 men attempted to flee the Serb police, leaving their wives, children, family relatives, etc behind? And all 25 attempted to hide in the same building? And the building wasn't the mosque in Racak, the one place you would surely take yourself and your family if
you really were looking for security. Shells falling all around you, police going door-to- door, and all 25 of you run to the same place and leave all your loved ones behind?

Depending on the source, I've read that the population of Racak in Jan 1999 was anywhere from 400 to 1400 inhabitants. Even using the minimum number of 400, there were surely more than 43 males in Racak on Jan 15, 1999. Why were only these 43 males "singled out", as the ICTY
indictment alleges? (ICTY indictment lists 43 males and 2 females as victims of Yugoslav government atrocities at Racak in the specific charges against Milosevic, et al).

The ICTY charges allege the village of Racak was attacked by Yugoslav government shelling; and yet, as you will see in future sections of this analysis, there is not one civilian casualty listed as dying in their home. Rather odd that "indiscriminate" shelling against a surprised, unwarned population should produce not even one death.......

If you will notice, in the details of the ICTY charges re: Racak, there is not the "customary" allegation that the "Serbs" separated the women and children from the males; apparently, they had already separated themselves........

One last point in this section of the report: if you check the list of alleged civilian "victims" in the ICTY indictment, you will notice a curious fact: the list of 45 is categorized by name, approximate age, and sex. This indictment was made public on May 22/99, more than 4 months after the alleged
atrocities occurred; and after this much time for Louise Arbour to investigate, her team could only come up with half of the approximate ages - 23 of the 45 listed in the indictment have no approximate age, which seems inconceivable given that all 45 have names and supposedly were ordinary residents of the village. The ICTY could find no one in Racak to give an approximation of age for over half of the alleged victims? Surely, someone must have known the roundabout ages of these people. For instance, in the ICTY listing of the next four charges, all having dates of occurrence after March 24, the start of NATO bombing, (alleging atrocities at Bela Crkva, Velika Krusa, Dakovica, and Crkolez), we find a list of about 185 alleged victims, with approximately 176 with full names, approximate ages, and sex. Obviously, a full ICTY investigation could not have occurred during the NATO bombs, and yet only 9 of 185 post-NATO bombing "atrocity" victims could not be positively recorded with approximate ages.


The Forensic Reports - Helena Ranta
Part A:

In this section, we'll see the nature of the EU forensic evidence along with the public comments of the lead pathologist involved in this report, Dr. Helena Ranta. As always, read the information carefully and see if you feel that the forensic evidence detailed in the EU report justifies a claim of an atrocity at Racak.

Subsequent reports on this site will detail witness reports, other forensic-evidence comments by those involved in the autopsies, etc: this edition will only focus on the comments of the nature of the forensic evidence presented to the EU by the pathologists themselves. As I stated in the introduction a few days ago, there was no record of either the actual Ranta forensic results, nor a record of the Yugoslav/Belarus forensic results, that I could find on the Internet.

Dr. Helena Ranta and her team of pathologists were already in Yugoslavia when the incident occurred at Racak; she was there to investigate the alleged atrocity scenes at six other locales, three of which were supposed to contain the remains of slaughtered Serb civilians, and three other sites which supposedly contained the remains of non-Serb civilians. When she finally did arrive in Pristina to join two other teams of pathologists headed by Dr. Sasa Dobricanin (Yugoslavia) and Dr. Vladimir Kuzmicov (Belarus), 16 bodies had already been autopsied by the Dobricanin/Kuzmicov teams. In her written statement presented at a press conference on March 17/99 (one week before NATO bombing began and one week after the release of the Dobricanin/Kuzmicov forensic report by Serbian State Prosecutor Dragisa Krsmanovic) coinciding with the release of her forensic report, Ranta agreed that "...with respect to these [16] corpses, the EU experts... [could] ...verify that the work [by Dobricanin/Kuzmicov et al.] had been done properly..."

In her statement, Ranta also comments on the fact that 40 bodies were investigated by the various teams in Pristina. (not 45 as detailed in the subsequent ICTY indictment of Milosevic and four of his aides) - again, the numbers tossed around in regards the incident at Racak Jan 15/99 vary wildly from source to source: one full week after this so-called "atrocity", OSCE was quoted as claiming 37 non-combatants were found dead, the US 45 non-combatants, and some Albanian sources 51 non-combatants. So we have numbers of 37, 40, 45, and 51; I don't think the variations are a question of mathematical ability. This is one of many indications of tampering at the scene before the securing of the site by Yugoslav investigators, one of many examples of an ongoing theme in the so-called "investigations" of Yugoslav government "atrocities"; some recent examples of this include the massacre of 14 Serbs in Kosovo which were "investigated" by a team of experts which did not include even one Yugoslav government pathologist. As well, in July/99 KFOR had information on a mass grave containing Serb civilians at Gnjilane, which they waited one month to disclose publicly.

Ranta also claimed in her statement that the circumstances of death of the 40 bodies had to be relied upon from OSCE and EU observers, as well as the media; this comment baffles me for two reasons. First, Ranta apparently made no attempt to consult with the Yugoslavian government as to their version of events- either with the Yugoslav army and/or with the Yugoslav police, both of which took part in the operation. Secondly, ALL observers at the scene during the incident at Racak describe a battle between the KLA and the Yugoslav forces; this includes the written press, TV journalists who filmed the operation, and OSCE observers as well. NO ONE from this group is on record as describing a "massacre" as having taken place.

Dr. Ranta's observation in her written statement that "....there were no indications that the people... [autopsied were] ...other than unarmed civilians..." is all the more puzzling given the fact that TV cameras (from AP news services), OSCE, print media, etc. at Racak on the day and times in question, all detail the operation of a police encirclement of KLA positions and a subsequent gunfight initiated by the KLA themselves, who fired first. More on this in later in the report; for now, I'm raising these facts to show that if Ranta did indeed rely on all these witnesses, why is her conclusion that the dead were "unarmed civilians" the exact opposite conclusion of all the filmed, written, and publicly proclaimed records/comments of all the neutral witnesses? (and other pathologists as well)

Not once in her statement does Ranta make a reference to the fact that OSCE observers were witnessing the events at Racak, as were television cameras and print media. Also not mentioned in the Ranta report is the fact that these observers were at Racak because they all had been INVITED BY THE YUGOSLAV POLICE THEMSELVES a few hours before the operation began.

I mention all this because the point is that any "moral high ground" claimed by NATO countries and their bombers would have been sorely tested had Western media chose to report with authority just this one fact of an invitation by the Yugoslav police forces- who would have believed in a government atrocity at Racak had this fact of an invitation-originally denied by OSCE - been publicized by most of the Western press? (some French media and Yugoslav media ran reports of this; I could find not even one mention of this invite in any mainstream North American newspaper before the NATO bombing). Ranta was aware of the invitation, but chose not to mention this in her statement. Do you think NATO would have bombed on March 24 had they been confronted with embarrassing questions regarding an invitation to a massacre by the killers themselves?

There are other points in the Ranta statement that are puzzling as well. For instance, she writes that to search for gunshot residue (GSR) on the 40 bodies, the best method available is to use a Scanning Electron Microscope with an Energy Dispersive X-Ray analyzer ( SEM/EDX); test samples on the bodies Ranta claims she investigated with this method proved negative, which weighed heavily in her estimation leaning towards the dead bodies found at Racak being non-combatants.

When I checked SEM/EDX under a simple Netscape search, I found the following:

DETECTION OF GUNSHOT RESIDUE, FORENSIC PATHOLOGY INDEX, NETSCAPE

"For these methods [SEM/EDX] , samples must be obtained from the skin surfaces of a victim AT THE SCENE [capitals/brackets mine]. Delay in
obtaining residues, movement [of bodies], or washing ...will diminish or DESTROY gunshot residues..."

The test samples by Ranta were not obtained from the bodies at the scene in Racak; Ranta did not start analyzing the bodies until 6 days after they had died; the bodies, as Ranta herself points out in her statement, were both moved and turned over; also, the shoes of some of the bodies had been removed and all 40 bodies were only recovered by the Yugoslavs after others had assembled and subsequently displayed the dead in the mosque at Racak. There is every likelihood that the bodies were washed before public display as well.

How could the method used by Ranta to detect gunshot residue have any validity? Every necessary precondition for the successful usage of the SEM/EDX on the bodies was violated before the tests could even be conducted by this method. And Ranta was aware of this; in fact she mentions all of them in her statement!

This is "evidence" for the ICTY?

There are also these simple comments from the same Netscape page:

"A rifle or shotgun may not deposit GSR on hands". "Determination of the range [distance between killer and victim] may be particularly difficult [to ascertain]."

Ranta also states that "...medicolegal investigations [such as scientific analysis of bodies] cannot give a conclusive answer to the question whether there was [in fact] a battle [between the police and insurgents]...", but she leans towards the victims being non-combatants in part because "...no ammunition was found in the pockets" of the bodies she investigated. However, she leaves out the fact that, in front of TV cameras, OSCE observers, and the press, the Yugoslav police found, after just a few hours of searching, the following items in Racak on Jan 15/99:

Le Figaro, Jan 23/99: 1 12.7mm heavy artillery gun, 2 hand-held artillery pieces, 2 sniper rifles, and about 30 Chinese-made Kalashnikov rifles.

Srpska Mreza site: 1 12.7mm Browning heavy artillery piece, 2 hand-held artillery pieces, 36 automatic rifles, 2 sniper rifles, ammunition, hand grenades, radio transmitters etc.

Most other press detailings approximate the same numbers as the two sources I've given for examples.

Also absent from Ranta's reported statement is any indication that Racak was indeed a KLA stronghold, with this terrorist group having a base near the power plant in Racak. If Ranta really used "the media", as she says, to make some of her determinations, then why was "no ammunition in the pockets" used by her in determining that the victims were probably non-combatants, but that AP film footage, OSCE observers at the scene at during the fighting, police reports, Racak as a KLA center, and the confiscation of huge amounts of artillery at such a small village in just a few short hours, not used?

Note that the EU, and the University of Helsinki, have both labeled Ms. Ranta's' comments made public Mar 17/99 comments as her personal opinion; Ms. Ranta herself states in the report that she cannot conclusively show a "massacre" had in fact occurred.

My question is this: what did NATO find out about Racak after March 17 (the date of the EU release of the Ranta report) and before March 19 (the day OSCE withdrew its observers from Yugoslavia) to prepare for its bombing of 2000 civilians starting on March 24?


Part B:

One of the more obvious points in the Ranta report is that there is no mention of a return to the "crime" scene by the Ranta team. I find this perplexing because Ms. Ranta made much of the fact that there was no evidence she could find to support the theory, and the comments of many of the interviewed neutral witnesses, that most of these 40 dead could have been KLA fighters deployed against government forces on Jan 15/99 in Racak.

Also, the EU commissioned Dr. Ranta and her team to do the study on the bodies found at Racak; OSCE itself, which had asked the EU for assistance in the forensics study of the bodies, stated that there were only 37 bodies. Numbers of bodies ranged from 22 to 51 depending on who was doing the public commenting; this alone should have been a warning to Ranta that something about this so-called "crime" scene was not right, and that at least one exploratory trip to Racak was necessary.

Dr. Ranta herself comments in her report on "body count" discrepancies, yet somehow did not feel the necessity for a visit to the area in which the bodies she autopsied were supposedly found.

As well, Ms. Ranta in her March 17/99 statement on her findings laments the fact that there was no "chain of custody" from the site of the bodies to EU hands; this, coupled with Ms. Ranta's observations that many of the bodies had been moved and/or turned over should have lead her and the rest of her team to at least acknowledge that gunshot powder residue may have been removed from the bodies autopsied by the simple fact that these bodies were repeatedly handled before she and her team could analyze them. In her statement one week before NATO attacks on Yugoslavia, there is no mention of this possibility - a possibility at least as likely as her conclusion that these 40 dead appeared to be non-combatants, and a possibility which would fit the known circumstances at Racak on the day in question.

The Ranta statement of her teams' forensic findings also mentions that the "victims" (her words - again contradictory; how could Ms. Ranta not be sure, as she says in her statement, that there was a massacre at Racak and yet call these people victims?) wore several warm jackets and pullovers - entirely consistent with people who have been living/operating in outdoor conditions, but hardly consistent with "victims" having just been pulled from their homes and summarily executed. The Ranta statement also points out that no ammunition was found in the pockets of the dead, and that in her opinion it would have been very unlikely that clothing could have been switched (i.e. from KLA uniforms to civilian clothing to fabricate an atrocity site) because of the way in which the entry holes of the bullets lined up as well as her study of the coagulated blood of the bodies.

Again, this is very strange because she does not consider the possibility that any KLA uniforms worn over these several layers of clothing could have been removed - even though she found that most if not all of the bodies had been moved and their positions after death altered in some way. This is entirely possible given the known circumstances of both the bodies and the events at Racak on Jan 15/99; the bullet holes between the clothing and the bodies would still line up, and the results of her teams' study of the coagulated blood would just as easily be consistent with uniformed bodies as without.

Another not-mentioned in her report, but well-known fact, about gunshot residue, is that even repeated firing of a weapon does not always produce any traces on the hands of the shooter; according to "Firearms Investigation Identification and Evidence" (Hatcher, Jury, and Weller):

"...the fact that in a great many instances one may fire a revolver or pistol without leaving any trace of gunpowder on the hand which may be detected by this test." (for nitrates, a component in gunpowder).

Again, no mention of this in her report that leans towards "non-combatants" as the probable status of the dead bodies she and her team analyzed.

As stated, Ms. Ranta decries the use of the paraffin test in gunshot residue tracing in her report, instead relying on the SEM/EDX method for determining "metallic content", as she puts it. This is simply a misleading statement for at least three reasons; first, the Dobricanin/Kuzmicov analysis did not include a paraffin test, as Dr. Dobricanin himself has stated. Secondly, "metallic content", as Ranta puts it, should include tests not only for nitrates, but for barium and antimony as well- unlike nitrates, two other components found often in gunpowder but rarely found otherwise in the environment. No mention of the fact that the paraffin method of testing for gunshot residue is almost universally used, when applied, for the detection of nitrates only, but not for either barium or antimony. And thirdly, Ranta states that when SEM/EDX test results were finalized by her team, the determination of metallic content proved "negative" for the collection of nitrates from the hands of the dead bodies at Racak.

THIS IS ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE; nitrates are a very common compound found in laundry products, cigarettes, fertilizer, some food, etc etc - and in a rural community such as Racak, all of these were in abundance and should have been detected. Given that nitrates are a common component of gunpowder, if Ranta did in fact find nitrates on the bodies, how could she exclude the possibility that the dead were fighters? And how is it possible not to find nitrates in your collection of "metallic content" given the known circumstances and way of life for those living in Racak?

Another telling point is that from the first moment that the bodies were being autopsied in Pristina, at least 2 OSCE observers were present at all times, even before the arrival of the Ranta team. At no time did any of the Belorussian or Yugoslav or subsequent EU pathologists have access to the bodies in question alone; besides the OSCE observers, all of the pathological procedures were filmed and photographed; Ranta herself took 3000 photographs and ten hours of video footage. If all procedures and methods were agreed upon, as Ranta states, and if the entire autopsy scene was constantly secured and recorded, then all parties must have found the same things together using the same methods. There would be no chance for anyone to add or subtract any physical evidence. How do 40 bodies NOT show traces of nitrates, at the very least, when they have been exposed to them their entire lives? And how do 37 of these same bodies show gunshot residue in the reports of two other forensic teams?

Also not mentioned in the Ranta statement are numerous other telling signs of a non-massacre:

(a) The 40 bodies analyzed were killed by gunshots FROM DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS; hardly the kind of thing one would expect from the rounding up of males and their subsequent "executions". Ranta claims in her report that the bodies were "most likely" shot where found. More than 20 were "found" in a ditch on the outskirts of Racak nearby KLA entrenchments and positions on the day of the Yugoslav police operation. How do you round up and execute 20+ people in a ditch near enemy positions and under constant mortar/rifle fire? From different directions? These determinations were made by both the Dobricanin and Kuzmicov teams in conjunction with Helena Ranta and her experts as well.

(b) All the dead bodies analyzed were killed by firearms shot from various distances, including the group of approx. 20 bodies found near a ditch (hardly a sign of an execution). This conclusion was reached by both Dobricanin and Kuzmicov and their respective teams of pathologists - and the methods used by them to determine this was in fact stated by Ranta in her statement Mar 17/99. To quote:

"After a demonstration autopsy, all agreed upon common methods and procedures."

Again, hardly a sign that 20+ bodies were "massacred" (a term much used by many Western governments and NATO to describe the events at Racak) - does anyone believe that more than 20 men just happened to leave their wives and children and relatives behind during an eight-hour battle,
with mortars and gunfire exploding practically nonstop, to seek refuge, unarmed, in one building, (as the ICTY indictment of Milosevic and four others stipulates) only to be lined up in a ditch under heavy enemy fire and executed at a distance from different directions?

(c) Many KLA fighters do not wear identifiable uniforms and in fact wear civilian clothing during their "operations"; Ms. Ranta knew this, but instead chose in her report only to state that the bodies bore no identifying badges or insignias. I find that comment most disturbing because in her statement Ranta claims that this also led to her conclusion that the bodies autopsied from Racak were "most likely" unarmed civilians; while Dr. Ranta states that she and her team relied exclusively on reports from both OSCE and the EU in determining the circumstances of death for those bodies. She has somehow left out of her report any knowledge or information on non-uniformed fighters the head of OSCE in Yugoslavia at the time, William Walker, made previously to Representative Joseph Moakley, D/Mass.

"Anyone can get uniforms. The fact that they [the killers] were dressed in military uniforms was not proof that they are military." (Wash Post Mar 21/93)

Or that if they are not dressed in uniforms... they might still be armed combatants.

(d) Lastly, not mentioned in the Ranta statement on her findings is that despite the fact that she was hired by the EU to do an objective pathological report in conjunction with Dr. Dobricanin and Dr. Kuzmicov, and despite the fact that Jan 22/99 was THE FIRST DAY RANTA BEGAN HER
WORK IN RELATION TO RACAK, we have the following: both of which Ranta was aware of and both of which are missing from her statement one week before NATO bombing:

From the EU website: Statement by EU Presidency, Brussels, JANUARY 20, 1999

"The political committee reviewed recent developments on Kosovo. It concluded: The EU condemns the recent massacre in Racak in the strongest possible terms. Belgrades' response to the massacre is totally inadequate....".

Belgrade's "response" of course, was to try and recover the bodies for forensic examination.

Here we have the conclusion-massacre- being forwarded before Ranta even looked at one body.

Also from the EU website, a report dated barely 3 days into the EU pathologists' analysis also mentions a discussion on Kosovo with EU Special Envoy Ambassador Petritsch (yes, this is the same Petritsch of Rambouillet "fame") and the outrage the European Union expresses concerning the "massacre" at Racak. In this 2158th Council Meeting, General Affairs, Brussels, the discussion related the EU "position" on Racak et al., put forth to Slobodan Milosevic in a letter from the President of the Council. along with a list of demands... (a mini-Rambouillet).

In conclusion, we have the EU which has already stated its conclusions on Racak as a "massacre" scene, deploying Helena Ranta and her team of pathologists to conduct an impartial forensic report. Despite stating that all pathologists involved, including those headed by both Dr Dobricanin and Dr Kuzmicov, agreed on all methods and procedures used in the autopsies, Dr Ranta concludes results opposite of findings from both Dobricanin and Kuzmicov teams. Dr. Ranta, despite the contradictory body counts which she acknowledges, and the contradictory claims as to the positions and locations of these bodies, makes no attempt to return to the so-called "crime" scene to advance further investigations. (ie blood on the ground, footprints, and their direction, etc). Dr. Ranta, despite claiming in her statement many instances in which an SEM/EDX test would not have validity, concludes that the bodies autopsied appeared to be "non-combatants", based largely on these tests. Dr. Ranta, in her statement, decries the validity of paraffin testing for gunshot residue despite the fact that paraffin testing was not even used by ANY of the pathologists involved. Dr. Ranta, in her statement on her findings, fails to mention one week before NATO bombs fell on Yugoslavia, that film crews, print media, and OSCE observers all reported a battle between the KLA and Yugoslav government forces, and that not one of this group present at Racak on Jan 15/99 saw anything remotely approaching what many, including her own employers at the time, have called a "massacre" or an "atrocity" - despite the fact that Dr. Ranta claims to have exclusively relied on OSCE, EU, and media reports as to the place and circumstances of death of these bodies. Dr. Ranta in her statement Mar. 17/99 also opines that "massacre" as a forensic conclusion is not possible, yet concludes that the 40 bodies found at Racak were victims, "probably" non-combatants, mentioning their lack of insignias and badges, despite having in her possession knowledge of a long gunbattle between the KLA and Yugoslav security forces, in which, from a very small town, Dr. Ranta found it unnecessary in her comments to acknowledge the huge amounts of weaponry that was confiscated, all or a part of which could have been used by any of the subsequently killed villagers against these security forces.

Finally, Dr. Ranta makes no mention of the fact that the bodies were shot dead from different directions near KLA positions and offers no explanation as to how many other pathologists using the same methods and procedures for evidence-collecting as she and her team used, and approved of, could in fact declare most of those autopsied were armed combatants, recently firing their weapons , and subsequently killed in battle.

The EU report comments of pathologist Helena Ranta is located at:
http://www.usia.gov/regional/eur/balkans/kosovo/texts/racak.htm


Other Forensic Studies

So far, these editions on the Racak charges by the ICTY against Milosevic et al have dealt with the nature of both the indictment and the forensic report comments by Dr. Helena Ranta who led the EU team in the study of the bodies recovered from Racak; a week after the Mar 17 disclosure of
Ranta's findings, NATO began bombing Yugoslavia.

Dr. Dobricanin from the Institute for Forensic Medicine in Pristina was also part of the medical team commissioned by Yugoslav investigating judge Danica Marinkovic, as was Dr. Kuzmicov from Belarus; together they led a team of experts examining the Racak bodies; the first 16 bodies were
studied by the Dobricanin/Kuzmicov examiners, while the last 24 bodies were studied by all the pathologists including those headed by Dr. Ranta.

Dr. Dobricanin has made the point in various interviews that OSCE observers were always present during the autopsies, constantly videotaping, even before the arrival of the Ranta team on Jan 22/99. Dr. Ranta herself has confirmed that the forensic work of the teams doing the study of the first 16
bodies analyzed was done properly. Drs. Dobricanin, Kuzmicov, and Ranta have all confirmed in various statements that all pathologists agreed to common methods and procedures for their forensic studies.

The findings of the Dobricanin/Kuzmicov teams re the bodies recovered from Racak were made public March 10/99 by Serbian State Prosecutor Ms. Dragisa Krsmanovic. According to this report, the Dobricanin/Kuzmicov teams detected nitrates (one of the components of gunpowder, but also one of the components of many everyday items such as tobacco, laundry soap, etc) on 37 out of the 40 bodies they analyzed. The report found no mutilation of the bodies either before or after their deaths; all injuries were from weapons fired from various distances, and no injuries were discerned from weapons discharged at close range. The Yugoslav forces at Racak on Jan 15/99, were responding to fire from KLA positions.

This is at great variance to the Ranta team comments as to their findings. Before we go any further, it should be noted that some may feel that the Dr. Dobricanin and Dr. Kuzmicov-led teams had intentionally set out to "find" evidence in support of the dead bodies being either combatants and/or
caught between either KLA-or-Yugoslav gunfire; tensions at the time were heightened in lieu of the forensic findings- just days after the discovery of the bodies at Racak, we have these comments:

From Louise Arbour: "Now is the time for action."
From Javier Solana: "A devastating massacre of Albanian civilians..."
From William Walker (head of OSCE): "I can describe what I saw as a massacre."

In addition, 400 NATO aircraft were put on alert. Despite this, the credentials of both the Dobricanin and Kuzmicov teams, comprised of experts from Nis, Novi Sad, and Belgrade amongst others, cannot be questioned. Dr. Ranta herself confirms this by noting the level of co-operation and
professionalism she and her team experienced in Pristina while helping to study the Racak bodies; as well Dobricanin is not intimidated by his employers nor his president. It was Dr. Dobricanin who signed a death certificate released April 21 1995 by the Institute for Forensic Medicine in Pristina, confirming that Sabit Islam Vllahia (born 1940) had died a violent death while in Yugoslav police custody (Mors Violente), confirming what ethnic Albanian doctors, Vllahia's relatives, and others had suspected. Mr. Vllahia had been arrested December 18 1994 in regards to arms possession.

It does not appear that Dr. Dobricanin would include anyone in his team of pathologists that would fabricate information for anyone, and is obviously not afraid of doing his job and publishing his findings.

Dr. Dobricanin has been adamant in his public statements and in his findings; no massacre, no "execution-style" wounds (made from a killer while their victim is on his/her knees), no blindfolding, no binding of the bodies at the wrist at the times of death, all injuries from a distance and resulting
from firearms, no pattern in the bodies of entry/exit wounds (i.e. all died from gunshots from different directions as well), no mutilation of the bodies before or after death (many of the pathologists and/or their respective governments had, before full examinations of the bodies, speculated that some tampering with the bodies had occurred before analysis; both Ranta, Dobricanin, and Kuzmicov concur that other than the wounds which caused death, only biting and tearing from small animals were discovered on the bodies), no torturing of the found bodies at Racak had occurred before death, etc etc.

A typical quote from Dr.Dobricanin (during the first stage of analysis): "Not a single body bears any sign of execution....the bodies were not massacred..." (BBC, Fri Jan 22/99)

Earlier in the report I have mentioned that I have not been able to use the actual forensic reports of any of the pathologists (where are they?); however, Dr. Dobricanin has seen the final Ranta report and comments that Ranta's opinion that the dead bodies were probably non-combatants WAS NOT FOUND IN HIS COPY OF HER REPORT.

As to the method of testing, Dr, Dobricanin has been quoted more than once as saying that his team, nor the team of Dr. Kuzmicov (nor the team of Ranta, as she herself confirms in her comments on the forensic analysis done by her team), removed powder particles with the "paraffin" method;
rather they used a foil followed by a chemical analysis of the contents on the foil - a method that has been used all over the world for a number of years, according to Dobricanin. Because of this, Dr. Dobricanin has been at a loss to explain why Ranta has derided the paraffin method, which was not used, in her comments of her report made public by the EU.

Dr. Dobricanin states that he recovered gunpowder traces from the fingers, palms, and above-palm areas, of the hands of 37 out of 40 bodies studied. This has helped him to conclude that almost all of the bodies found were recently armed and had fired their weapons shortly before death.

In an interview with Politika on Mar 19, Dr. Dobricanin was also quoted as saying that the Ranta team DID NOT EVEN TAKE SAMPLES FROM THE HANDS OF ANY OF THE BODIES.

Dr. Vujadin Otasevic, part of the forensic teams analyzing the bodies recovered from Racak, also asserts that none of the pathologists found any sign of torture; only mutilation wounds from small animals after death were found. Dr. Otasevic also comments on the fact that various types of drugs
and amphetamines were found in some of the bodies; he states that the Ranta team did not sign the common report of Dobricanin/Kuzmicov because they told him they wanted to run final blood checks at the University of Helsinki. Dr. Otasevic also concurs that there was no massacre.

Finally, Dr. Kuzmicov from Belarus also has been heavily quoted in relation to the forensic results. Dr. Kuzmicov and his team found results including no slitting of throats, no signs of torture, and no signs of a massacre. Dr. Kuzmicov states that his team determined causes of death, how they died,
(i.e. from weapons fired), distance from the weapons fired to the bodies, directions from which the weapons causing death were fired, types of arms used to cause death, etc.

Dr. Kuzmicov also comments on the fact that practically all bodies found were dressed in several pairs of pants, shirts, and other warm clothing; he states that many packets of cigarettes were found nearby, as well as other items suggesting life in cold, hard, outdoor conditions. Dr. Kuzmicov also
states that his team and the Dobricanin team, together, signed the final report (with English translations as well), but that Ranta's team did not sign because they told him they wanted more time.

This concludes the forensic study re bodies found at Racak. Again, the events of Jan 15/99 are the basis for the only specifically-dated charge against Milosevic and four others by the ICTY, before the bombing attacks by NATO. As we shall see in future editions, nothing in the EU-released forensic report mentions the KLA by name, nor the fact that Racak was a KLA-stronghold on Jan 15/99; nor is there any mention of the fact that the bodies were killed by firearms shot over various distances and from different directions- nor is the fact that the print media and TV cameramen were both invited by the Yugoslavs themselves hours before the police operation at Racak.

Nor is their any mention of this in the ICTY indictment.


What Really Happened Jan. 15, 1999 at Racak: The ICTY Version

According to the ICTY indictment against Slobodan Milosevic and four others, dated May 22nd, 1999:

(28) "In one such incident on Jan 15, 1999, 45 unarmed Kosovo Albanians were murdered in the village of Racak...."

(98)a "On or about 15 January 1999 in the early morning hours the village of Racak ...was attacked by forces of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.... After shelling by [government/Yugoslavia] units, the Serb Police entered the village later in the morning and began conducting house-to-house searches. Villagers who attempted to flee from the Serb [M.U.P.] Police, were shot throughout [Racak]. A group of approximately 25 men attempted to hide in a building, but were discovered by the Serb Police. They [the men found in the building] were beaten and then were removed to a nearby hill, where the policemen shot and killed them...."


I have discussed the "merits" of this version of events in previous Racak editions: to elaborate on the most obvious discrepancies.

(a) "Group of 25 men" apparently left their wives, children, and other relatives behind to hide- all together- in one building, unarmed civilians running from their families when they are needed most.

(b) "The village of Racak... was attacked by... shelling from... [government/Yugoslavia] units...", makes no mention that Racak was a KLA-stronghold and the sight of many previous- and- post police operations; for instance, in the charge cited in the ICTY indictment, nothing is said concerning the huge amounts of firepower confiscated from these "villagers" nor does the charge refer to the established KLA base near the Racak power plant. All witnesses to these events at Racak on Jan 15/99 refer to the KLA attacking the Government of Yugoslavia forces (who had surrounded the village of Racak looking for the murderers of numerous policemen and civilians in and near Racak staring in the summer of 1998), from trenches, barricades, and other fortifications, using automatic weapons, hand-held missile launchers, hand-held grenade launchers, etc. All this firepower from "villagers" available on very short notice and who were suddenly surprised by an unannounced police operation . With so many people moving in and out of Racak, it would be difficult to pinpoint an approximate population count, which is why we have estimates recorded of between 400 and 1400 inhabitants. Obviously, Racak on Jan 15, 1999 was not a quaint little village with a fixed or nearly fixed number of full-time residents. As well, I find it unusual that the ICTY indictment pertaining to Racak does not mention that ALL residents were not running from the shelling; only the males were. I'm sure homes in Racak consisted of men, women, and children - and yet during this so-called indiscriminate "shelling of the village of Racak" we find not even one casualty listed as dying in their home from Yugoslav government bombs; nor is their any mention of women and children running from the shelling. The Yugoslav government operation went on for approximately 8 hours; all accounts record vicious cross-firing and shelling of military positions, but none record civilian homes as being the targets. Again, curious that this is "missing" from the ICTY statement of facts.......

(c) As mentioned in previous editions, the Yugoslav government forces actually invited OSCE itself, TV crews (from Associated Press) and print media to attend Racak on the day in question; curiously, this fact is also missing from the version of events in the ICTY indictment.

(d) The ICTY indictment does not list the fact that the KLA fired first, nor the fact that numerous heavy arms were confiscated after the Yugoslav forces moved into Racak; in fact, the KLA is not mentioned at all in the indictment as being stationed in and near Racak on the day in question. A typical report I found lists as confiscated by Yugoslav police: one 12.7 mm Browning heavy artillery piece, two other hand-held artillery pieces, 36 automatic rifles, two sniper rifles, numerous rounds of ammunition, numerous hand grenades, radio transmitters, etc- not your standard fare in a quaint little village.

(e) No mention is made in the ICTY indictment of the fact that the area in and around Racak was the scene, as mentioned earlier, of numerous attacks against both civilians, policemen, and army personnel. The list of attacks makes it apparent that they were organized and called for some sort of response by the Yugoslav government. One of the KLA victims was Enver Maloku, head of the Kosovo Information Center, and a prominent advisor to Ibrahim Rugova. Some of the others killed included civilians Enver Gasi (on Jan2/99), Miftar Reseni (Dec 31/98), as well as policemen Sasa Jankovic (Aug 2/98), Sinisa Mihajlovic (Sept 10/98), Ranko Djordjevic (Oct 12/98), Nazmija Aluri (Oct 29/98), and Svetislav Przic (Jan 10/99); on Nov 18/98, the home of Djemalj Batici was burned to the ground by the KLA As well, there were numerous kidnappings of Albanian and Roma civilians which were reported in the districts of Urosevac and Stimlje. And on Dec 14/98 in Pec, one month before the police operation at Racak, six youths were shot and killed, along with many others wounded, in a cafe. Earlier, in Kosovo, 22 Serb civilians were massacred by the KLA who dismembered the bodies and burned them in ovens.

Again, this backdrop is curiously "missing" from the ICTY indictment list of the relevant information relating to the charges, but this same indictment finds the time to list many general (but no specific) allegations directed at Milosevic and four of his aides which purportedly occurred before NATO
began bombing. Again, Racak was not your typical rural village. I have only listed some of the attacks against civilians and police forces in that part of Kosovo; other reports, such as the one by Milovan Mitrovic from the University of Belgrade (Dec 15/98), also lists hundreds of Serb civilians
alone being kidnapped by the KLA, including farmers, women, children, health workers, media personnel, etc.

(f) The police operation at Racak on Jan 15/99 was part of a larger operation including the villages of Belince and Malopoljce, which were the areas of police presence later that day. Again, no mention in the ICTY indictment that the operation at Racak was designed to arrest not only KLA members in Racak ( that is why the Racak was surrounded in the first place ), but in the other two areas as well. No "atrocities" were reported from either Belince nor Malopoljce- of course, these two areas on the day in question were not the scenes of a protracted battle between the KLA and
government forces, either. For the ICTY to accuse the Yugoslavs of targeting unarmed civilians only in Racak, but not in any of the other towns, should have an objective person question why the only reports of "atrocities" during this multi-town police operation were given by the "residents" of a town with a base for armed separatists who fired first, and why, apparently, the Yugoslavs were not interested in killing "civilians" in any of the other villages.

(g) No where in the ICTY indictment is there a reference to the fact that OSCE originally denied being invited to watch this police operation; only after Briton Neal Strachan claimed in an interview in the London Guardian that he was one of the OSCE members officially invited to witness the Jan 15/99 police operation at Racak, did OSCE itself concede this.

(h) No mention in the ICTY indictment that 3 different forensic teams who analyzed the bodies found no evidence to verify that the dead had been massacred; 2 of those teams positively concluded that in fact 37 out of the 40 bodies analyzed had recently discharged weapons . The ICTY quotes no forensic report to show that the vast majority of bodies recovered from Racak were none other than KLA members/supporters killed during combat.

(i) No mention in the ICTY indictment of the vast discrepancies in numbers of "civilians" killed at Racak on this day; the indictment itself lists 45 - a Yugoslav police communiqué reached the International Press Center in Pristina about 3pm Jan 15/99 and lists that 15 KLA members had been killed in combat; the Albanian Information Center mentions 7 killed. The Serbian Information Center lists 15 KLA killed; another Albanian source states 8 KLA killed, while OSCE, at that time with William Walker as the #1 observer in Kosovo, says 37 bodies were found , and that 2/3 of about 20 bodies that were in a ravine, later found to be near one of the KLA positions, contained victims aged 50 and older. Since the ICTY itself only lists two, out of which it says were 45 bodies found, over the age of 50, that in itself should be evidence of something amiss with the truthfullness of the detail of this indictment, notwithstanding the fact that somehow Yugoslav forces managed to execute civilians near KLA positions during a heated battle in the first place. The Americans claim 45 bodies were found (surprised?) while other Albanian sources list up to 51 bodies found.

The next day, Jan 16/99, the KLA itself claimed to have lost 8 combatants during the previous fighting, and that the Yugoslavs had locked the women and children in basements while taking away many male civilians; many villagers on the day in question claimed that the Yugoslavs had arrested 24 men and OSCE observers IN ANOTHER LOCALE OTHER THAN RACAK were called to verify this! (why would you not call the OSCE office nearest you?) The OSCE observers present during the fighting went into Racak and left soon after, taking with them a couple of elderly people slightly injured during the battle; the OSCE observers from another locale arrived soon after in Racak, found no evidence of arrests of males (or anyone else) by the Yugoslavs, found no evidence of any "massacre", were not told by villagers of any "massacre" , and went home later that
night. French observers in OSCE have stated in interviews that they had no idea other observers from OSCE were called. In other words, two sets of OSCE teams went into Racak within hours of the withdrawal of Yugoslav forces, completely unaware that the other was there. And neither team
reported anything untoward. And this is also missing from the "background" detailed in the ICTY indictment.

This concludes the study of the ICTY version of events, as it relates to its indictment against Milosevic and four others, specifically regarding the events at Racak Jan 15/99.

The whole ICTY indictment lacks any perspective or details as to the nature and truthfullness of its version of events; and, as we shall see in subsequent editions on the events at Racak, nothing in the indictments' version of events matches the versions given by all the witnesses to the entire operation by the Yugoslav forces on Jan 15/99 at Racak.


What Really Happened on Jan. 15, 1999 at Racak: Evidence and Witness Accounts

This report will focus on the corroborated accounts of witnesses to the events at Racak on Jan 15/99.

As mentioned in earlier reports, the Yugoslav police operation at Racak on Jan 15/99 was one part of an overall crackdown on KLA positions the same day at Belince and Malopoljce as well; Racak itself was the site of a heavily-armed KLA stronghold near its power plant.

The KLA had been active in and around Racak, committing civilian killings, house-burnings, and kidnappings prior to the Yugoslav police operation of Jan 15/99; in fact, since the Oct/98 agreement between President Milosevic and Richard Holbrooke in Belgrade, and Jan 14/99 - the day before the police operation at Racak- the KLA engaged in attacks involving 186 civilians and 413 Yugoslavian government forces, in Kosovo/Metojina alone. As mentioned earlier, one of those was murder victim Enver Maloku, at the time head of the Kosovo Information Center and a close advisor to Ibrahim Rugova.

The Yugoslav police and army forces surrounded Racak Jan 15/99 as the first phase in the attempted arrest of KLA members suspected of being in the area. When the KLA fired on the government troops from fortified positions, the Yugoslav forces responded. Most reports state the KLA using automatic weapons, hand-held rocket launchers, and mortars from trenches, bunkers, and other fortifications in and immediately outside Racak; the government response was by automatic weapon fire, tanks, and anti-aircraft guns. The exchanges were steady, intense, and from many directions; most reports I found mention a 6-to-8 hour battle.

As is well known and corroborated from many sources, TV cameramen from AP news services, print media, and OSCE were all invited by the government to witness this particular "takedown" at Racak; Neil Strechan, a British observer, was one of those present at Racak during the Jan 15/99 operation. Other reports give Gabriel Keller, a former ambassador to Yugoslavia and at the time the #2 man in OSCE behind William Walker, as also being present .Some reports also mention two OSCE vehicles as being present at all times during the fighting, while other reports specifically mention two OSCE vehicles with US diplomatic plates.

By 8:30am the fighting was already under way, the film crew had been invited to watch, and OSCE had been notified as well. By 11:30am that morning the first reports of casualties were being received from sources on both sides of the battle. Albanian sources were confirming deaths and damages on both sides, as were government sources. Figures range wildly on this topic as well; during the day reports of KLA killed run from "several" to seven to eight to fifteen; the Yugoslav government later reported at least fifteen killed, among them Mujota Sadik (born 1943) from Malopolje, who is reported to have headed a KLA faction near Racak along with his daughter (who was also reported killed), three sons, and his brothers.

As well, Goran Vucicevic from the Serbian Police Forces was reported injured, and these same reports mention various damage to Ministry of Internal Affairs vehicles that were taking part in the operation at Racak. It should be noted that several reports mention that most, but not all, of the KLA killed were in uniform; fighters in civilian clothes were seen fighting alongside the KLA. This would seem to be a logical result of a surprise police operation; once the fighting started, many of those who were fighting with the KLA probably did not have time to don uniforms.

The government forces eventually made their way into Racak, shortly before noon. According to every report I could find concerning the contents of the actual film of the event by AP, Racak was almost totally empty of civilians by the time these government forces actually entered the village. But because the KLA was still firing on them, the Yugoslav forces had to move slowly, from wall to wall, in order to avoid the shooting. The AP film records no separating in Racak that day of males from women and children (as the KLA and its supporters claim) by the government forces; the film records no killing of civilians attempting to flee from the government forces (as claimed in the ICTY indictment against Milosevic, et al); the film records no "discovery" of 25 unarmed males in a building who were beaten, removed to a nearby hill, and shot (also as charged in the ICTY indictment).

Nor does the AP film show anything, according to all reports of those who have seen it, other than KLA fighters attempting to kill government forces followed by the confiscation of huge amounts of artillery and firearms belonging to the KLA.

As mentioned, OSCE observers were present throughout the operation, watching along with the press from a safe position overlooking the area. At shortly after 3pm that day, most reports give an account of an OSCE verifier (some reports claim it was Gabriel Keller ) contacting the leader of these Yugo government forces to request a cessation of the operation. Shortly after 3:30pm ( some reports say the last policemen left just before 5pm), OSCE observers move into Racak to assess the damage and take reports. Some journalists see two OSCE vehicles, some see three.

At any rate, the only injured removed by OSCE are two elderly men and two elderly women, around 6pm that day. OSCE is quoted from various sources as saying that they were unable to evaluate the battle toll at that time. This is in direct contradiction to the ICTY charge which in the indictment claims that Serb police shot civilians throughout the village. Obviously, if there are dead civilians "throughout the village", then OSCE would have found at least some of them after two and a half hours of "observing". Not even residents of Racak are reported to have said this - although in interviews, some of these residents claimed that the Serbian police went into their homes (during a pitched battle!), separated the males, locked the women and children in basements, and removed those males to nearby hilltops where they were executed.

So none of the residents of Racak are reporting fellow villagers being gunned down in the streets of Racak- an integral part of the ICTY indictment. As to the claim by these witnesses that they were locked in basements, how is it then possible to see where " the males" have been taken to, or that they have been "executed"?

Also note that the print media present throughout the police operation at Racak and afterwards also give radically different witness accounts as compared with the ICTY indictment list of facts.......

Probably the most telling fact about these Racak residents "witness accounts" is that not one of them could either direct OSCE on Jan 15 to the site of these "executions" immediately after the cessation of hostilities, nor later that day when A 2nd TEAM OF OSCE OBSERVERS WERE SENT TO RACAK. Believe it or not, this 2nd team was dispatched because of phone calls to an OSCE detachment IN ANOTHER LOCALE- not the nearest OSCE post! This second team responded to claims that 24 male arrests by the Serbian police had been made earlier in the day at Racak.

This second team of OSCE verifiers, independent of the first (as some of the French members of OSCE, unaware of a second team, confirmed during interviews with the newspaper Liberation), found no evidence of arrests, were not directed to any "atrocity" site, saw no gunned down or locked-up villagers, and in fact saw nothing untoward and went home later that night.

Strange that the first OSCE team into Racak, there since the early morning, could not "evaluate the battle toll" with, supposedly, bodies strewn everywhere; equally strange is the evaluation of the second OSCE team, independent of the first, and from another locale, that nothing worth recording had happened and subsequently left.

Strange that on Jan 15/99, no one in Racak, population 400-1400 (depending on which source you check), could bring anyone from OSCE or from the press to the site of what William Walker later termed, an "atrocity"- and for those of you familiar, William Walker is the man to ask when it comes to "atrocity" expertise. (see his dismal record in Central America available on many internet sites)

Strange that these same villagers had two different opportunities the same day to show OSCE the various bodies massacred throughout the village (according to the ICTY) as well, and yet did not.

Another puzzling fact is that OSCE contacted government forces around 3:00pm asking for a cessation of hostilities; this would give so-called "executioners" of these government forces half an hour to confiscate all the weapons they found, lock all the women and children in basements, round up all the remaining men, beat them, move them to a nearby hill, shoot them, then leave before OSCE arrived at 3:30pm. And, they would have to do this out of sight of cameramen as well. All reports I saw have OSCE coming in at 3:30pm, with the government forces leaving by no later than 5pm; certainly such a "crime against humanity" could not have been conducted while OSCE was there between 3:30pm and 5pm.

And between the late morning, when the first government forces went into Racak, and 3pm, hostilities were raging so severely that OSCE had to request a ceasefire - obviously a roundup of males complete with beatings and executions could not have been conducted during a crossfire.

Another "forgotten" point in the ICTY indictment regarding Racak is the fact that there were no reported civilian casualties from indiscriminate government "shelling of the villagers of Racak"; again it is apparent that the Yugoslav government was not shelling the homes of civilians, but the positions of the KLA, who had fired first during this attempted arrest operation.

The obvious question: what is the ICTY using to justify their charges against Milosevic and four others in their indictment regarding Racak?

Certainly not evidence from AP, print journalists, the Yugoslav government, or even OSCE verifiers at the scene that day.

And certainly not the forensic reports, none of which concluded that a massacre had taken place on that day at Racak.

The Discovery and Recovery of the Bodies

Two different teams of OSCE personnel were at Racak the day of the fighting; the first team went in about a half hour after the shooting had stopped, while the second team, at that time unbeknownst to the first, went in later on that night. Both teams of OSCE observers failed to find even one civilian killed at Racak. Both OSCE teams left without being directed to any so-called "atrocity" site by even one of the residents of Racak.

But by the next morning, journalists were directed by KLA members to a dry bed of a stream on Bebus Hill overlooking Racak; there these journalists found a number of dead bodies in civilian dress. Other bodies were scattered nearby. Many of the journalists present have remarked upon the absence of shell casings and blood near these bodies. Some reporters have questioned why most of these bodies could not be identified by the residents of Racak. For instance, B92 Daily News for Feb 4/99 remarks that 29 out of the 40 bodies autopsied could not be returned to residents of
Racak because those residents trying to claim the bodies could not prove their identities as relatives of the dead.

Curiously, one OSCE investigator the morning after the fighting at Racak claims to have seen 38 dead bodies; OSCE head William Walker, who arrived shortly after, claims he counted 45 bodies. The French newspaper Liberation reports 20 bodies in a ditch, with other bodies scattered about.
AP news in the New York Times, Jan 16/99, reports 15 bodies in one ravine and 8 more in another location.

Once again, we have a "numbers" problem; the number of dead bodies that the ICTY (which alleges 40) have listed in their indictment runs contrary to many of the numbers claimed to have been seen by reporters, OSCE (which claimed, for instance, that 2/3 of the bodies in one area were aged 50 or more; in the ICTY indictment, only 2 out of 40 are listed as being 50 years or older), the KLA, etc etc. John Fantini, at that time head of the Kosovo Verification Mission in Urosevac, claims that members of his team counted 39 bodies; other editions of this analysis have reported claims of 37 bodies, 45 bodies, 51 bodies, etc etc.

One thing is certain: if these bodies were execution victims of the Yugoslav government, they would have had to have been rounded up and marched to the outskirts of Racak, and killed, in at most 30 minutes, after which the first OSCE team went into Racak to investigate the outcome of the fighting. As well, these executions of civilians would have had to have been done away from the AP film crew which followed and recorded the Yugoslav government forces as they moved into Racak while still under fire from the KLA.

Danica Marinkovic, investigating judge with the District Court of Pristina, made her first attempt to arrive in Racak along with Ismet Sufto, Deputy District Public Prosecutor; this followed the public pronouncements of OSCE head William Walker that unarmed civilians had been massacred
there. Ms. Marinkovic could not begin her investigation when she arrived at Racak because the KLA fired at her from their positions in the area. OSCE told the judge and prosecutor that they would have to investigate without an armed guard, as this security was seen as a provocation by the KLA.

At this time, the Yugoslavs notified Walker that their first investigations into the incidents at Racak would begin Jan 17/99, starting at 8:00am and would continue that day until 1:00 pm, with an armed guard being sent along for everyone's' protection. The Yugoslav government, as they had done
before their police operation on the 15th, invited OSCE to attend.

During this Yugoslav investigation, the KLA again fired on OSCE, Ms. Marinkovic and her team, with mortars and other artillery, from various positions including nearby Petrovo. One of the missiles hit the judges' car, while others narrowly missed the judge herself. Some reports record a total of three attempts by the Yugoslav government to recover the bodies and investigate the "crime" scene, other reports indicate four attempts. The EU pathologist, Helena Ranta, never did go to Racak.

By Monday, Jan 18/99, the last of the preliminary investigations by the Yugoslavs had been completed and the bodies, which had been moved into a mosque in Racak, were loaded into government vehicles for transportation to Pristina where the initial autopsy studies would begin.

By Jan 20th/99, the EU had officially condemned the events at Racak as a massacre- despite the fact that the pathologist they asked to do their forensic study of the bodies ( to determine whether or not the dead had been KLA combatants in civilian clothing) would not begin her work until Jan
21st/99.

This would not be the first or last time that the Yugoslavs government would be accused of "atrocities" or "massacres"- which is all the more reason that they acted with expediency and tenacity in recovering the bodies at Racak for investigation. And I can recall some recent attempts by Western authorities to prevent the Yugoslav authorities from access to civilian bodies found murdered; AIM news for Sept 3 this year reports complaints from the Yugoslav government in this regard at Ugljare. As well, the 14 Serb farmers found murdered under KFOR auspices recently were autopsied without any government pathologists present. And at Gnjilane, a mass grave of 15 Serb civilians was found July 24th this year, while public notification of this took about 30 more days.

Other reports have questioned the authenticity of "massacre" claims at Racak by pointing to film purportedly showing the mourning relatives of these executed civilians, relatives wearing black clothing and/or black mourning beads which these reports say are not a traditional Muslim expression of grief.

Interestingly enough, the 40 autopsied bodies found at Racak eventually were returned to the Pristina Institute of Forensic Medicine because despite Ms. Marinkovic's efforts to turn over the dead to the relatives, no one would claim the bodies. According to an interview reprinted Feb 5/99 in Serbia-Info, the judge had notified OSCE, Muslim priests in Racak, and representatives from the Democratic League of Kosovo as to a time and place for the Yugoslav government to return the bodies. When Marinkovic arrived, it was dark and a large crowd had gathered outside of the arranged meeting place; OSCE, the Muslim priests, and reps from the Democratic League all agreed that the transfer of bodies to the families should take place at the Stimlje Health Center instead. When it became obvious that no one was coming to the health center to claim the bodies, once more
Marinkovic returned with the entire entourage, and the bodies, to the original agreed meeting place, a Stimlje mosque, to again try and return the dead for burial. However, none of the crowd was to be seen; Marinkovic felt she had no choice but to return the bodies to Pristina.

The next day, according to Marinkovic, in front of the Institute for Medicine at Pristina, a large crowd again appeared. This time, "relatives" of the "victims" staged fainting scenes and rolled around in the snow in front of reporters and foreign TV film crews, bemoaning their inability to claim the
bodies to anyone who would listen- or watch.

The ICTY has apparently not considered any of these facts in their formulation of the Racak segment of the indictment against Milosevic and four aides. As well, the discovery of these bodies, the number of which remains in dispute, coupled with the removal of these bodies away from their
places of death and into a mosque, should have alerted any objective pathologist, or anyone studying the forensic results, to the exclusion of conditions that would have made the SEM/EDX test for gunpowder residue not applicable- a test which the EU team used anyway, under the employ of officials who declared the Yugoslav government guilty of an atrocity at Racak even before their own pathology team could begin investigating.


Conclusions

This edition will conclude the analysis of the Racak charge in the May22/99 ICTY indictment against Slobodan Milosevic, Milan Milutinovic, Nikola Sainovic, Dragoljub Ojdanic, and Vlajko Stojiljkovic. For previous editions of this analysis.

The ICTY charges that the five above-listed individuals committed both crimes against humanity and violations of the laws or customs of war on January 15, 1999 at the village of Racak, Yugoslavia.

Based on the known facts and circumstances, the indictment as specified by the ICTY fails to provide even a bare minimum of corroborated details to justify such serious allegations. For instance, the alleged "crime scenes" at Racak were not controlled by a chain of custody. There were no attempts made by those who allegedly "stumbled" across the bodies found at Racak, nor by so-called "independent" international observers who arrived shortly afterwards, to secure the scene for the proper authorities; this has led many to conclude that this "crime site" was in fact a staged event, in which the KLA definitely disarmed their dead combatants, possibly removed their uniforms, and then presented these fighters as "massacred" civilians.

This lack of control between the times of death and the eventual recovery of these bodies for analysis by the proper authorities does in fact open the possibility of tampering by those, specifically the KLA, who would hope to provoke other aggressors to action against the Yugoslav government.

This possibility was rejected by the ICTY outright; no where in the indictment does it mention that what are being claimed as "massacred civilians" were found by armed insurrectionists.

In an objective court of law, where the accused is presumed innocent, an unsecured "crime scene", coupled with the fact that those who allegedly discovered an "atrocity" at Racak, the KLA, were themselves subjects of numerous national and international arrest warrants regarding drug
trafficking and systematic murders of civilians, should have rendered this case as frivolous and therefore unprosecutable. For instance, missing from the ICTY indictment (and most Western news services on this case, even today) is the fact that those who have claimed to "discover" this "crime against humanity", also (a) massacred civilians on a regular basis (b) used both regularly dressed, and uniformed fighters, on a regular basis, (c) were, in the hours immediately previous to the alleged massacre themselves engaged in a heated firefight with the authorities (d) instigated this firefight by shooting first (e) had a major operating base near the power plant in Racak (f) engaged Yugoslav
forces at Racak on numerous occasions before Jan 15/99, and since that date; within three days of the so-called "massacre" at Racak, those that "found" the bodies again engaged the police with automatic weapons and mortar fire - this time targeting, but narrowly missing, those authorities who were involved in the recovery of the bodies for analysis.

Many Western-court prosecution attempts do not even make it past the preliminary stage if there is even a hint of tainted evidence and/or an unsecured crime scene, especially when the potential is present for known criminals to infiltrate and arrange the scene to embarrass the authorities. The ICTY knew this yet went ahead with their indictments anyway, as much acknowledging that the frivolous nature of these charges being exposed in the long term would be counterbalanced by scoring short-term publicity points that would "take the edge" off repeated media reports of numerous civilian casualties of the NATO "smart" bombings.

Besides the criminal nature of those who called the international press to announce the discovery of "massacred" civilians, we have to consider the nature and circumstances of most of the dead themselves. Two teams of forensic pathologists have stated in the report of their analysis that 37 out of 40 bodies autopsied had recently fired weapons; furthermore, many of the bodies showed signs of exposure to an environment of cold, outdoor, living conditions immediately prior to their deaths. This is in direct contradiction to the ICTY details in their indictment, which claims that more than half the dead were civilians of Racak who were hiding in a building in the village, only to be discovered by the Yugoslav authorities, and that none of the deceased were armed.

Furthermore, according to these forensic reports from two teams of pathologists, most of the bodies autopsied wore several warm jackets, pullovers, and pants, and were killed from many different directions and from many distances, which is consistent with a pitched battle between surrounding forces and trapped insurgents who are normally dressed for outdoor living conditions. Again, these facts are not consistent with the ICTY-stated conclusion that most of the dead were simply innocent villagers rounded up, beaten, then shot.

A third forensic report was independently filed by Helena Ranta at the behest of the EU; this report also does not conclude that a "massacre" at Racak had taken place. But her conclusion that most of the dead were unarmed at their times of death was largely based on the SEM/EDX testing method for gunshot residue recovery, a type of analysis whose preconditions for accuracy were non-existent- preconditions that were a matter of the public record Ranta also states she " relied upon" in her determinations.

All forensic analysis done on these bodies, and the conclusions of the heads of three different medical teams, has been omitted in the ICTY detailing of the charges in the indictment. Furthermore, also missing from the ICTY indictment is the fact that the EU had already publicly stated its conclusions before the pathologist they hired, Dr. Ranta, had even begun her testing. On two separate occasions the EU denounced the "massacre" at Racak, months before any forensic reports had finalized.

In any Western-style courtroom, a revelation that the prosecution was not only relying on murderers and drug dealers to boost their case, but that the judge worked in conjunction with those who had already publicly stated the defendant's guilt before trial, would result in outcries of unfairness by the public; no doubt any of those involved would never be able to work in that field again.

But at the Hague, in respect to this indictment against Milosevic and four aides, the lead prosecutor is rewarded with a Supreme Court appointment back home, even before the case goes to trial- while none of the judges involved have the moral fibre to remove themselves from ruling , based on the obvious conflicts of interest they themselves publicly admit to.

Also missing from the details of Racak charges in the ICTY indictment is the fact that any claims of legitimacy by the court willing to rule on this case eminate from an organization with a built-in select veto, the UN, itself designed to thwart any democratic or objective renderings by its members.

The objectivity of a court that owes its existence to an organization engaged in the implementation of ten years' worth of economic sanctions against the defendants and their co-citizens also must be called into question; how can an honest verdict be reached when the judge's employer has publicly called for the dismissal of the defendants from their elected positions?

The legitimacy of these charges can also find little solace in the fact that two separate teams of OSCE observers, one immediately after the cessation of hostilities between the KLA and Yugoslav forces at Racak on Jan 15/99, the second again later that same evening, one unbeknownst to, and independent of the other, failed to find even one civilian casualty, despite the fact that both had unimpeded, unrestricted access to the citizens of Racak and more than enough opportunity to be shown the location and other details of this so-called "massacre".

It wasn't until the next day, after the observers had left convinced that there were no civilian casualties, that the bodies of "massacred civilians" appeared. William Walker, OSCE head at the time in Yugoslavia, personally condemned the site of the bodies as an "atrocity" scene, despite basing his conclusions on the word of KLA members who had committed a minimum of 599 documented acts of terrorism against both Yugoslav forces and civilians in just 3 months.

Both of these details are curiously missing from what is purported to be an even-handed attempt at justice by the ICTY. Also missing from this indictment is the invitation extended by the Yugoslavs to both OSCE (which denied at first, but then admitted), and the press, to report and film what has been corroborated as a crackdown at Racak on the KLA that day - part one of a three-part police/army venture against the armed separatists which also included raids by the government the same day at two other known KLA strongholds in different locales.

The ICTY indictment fails to list the fact that all reports on what the film crew from AP news services recorded detail a practically empty village with Yugoslav forces moving carefully between buildings to avoid KLA mortars and gunfire. Not one civilian is filmed being arrested, beaten, tortured, or shot- but the film does show a large confiscation of KLA military hardware by the Yugoslavs; reports generally indicate 30+ automatic rifles, 2 sniper rifles, a 12.7mm Browning heavy artillery piece, thousands of rounds of ammunition, numerous hand grenades, radio transmitters, etc etc.

All of this found in a village with a population of perhaps as low as 400 people. Does the ICTY think that any Western court - the principles of which are purported to be in the model currently in use at the Hague - would believe that most of those who died with traces of gunpowder on their hands in a village with an insurgent base, and such a documented haul of weaponry from that village, were "massacred"?

That is the problem with this indictment and with these international courts - the standards applied against Milosevic and his co-accused are radically different from the standards afforded an accused in any of the home countries of the judges and prosecutors now in league at the Hague.

The ICTY indictment is so poorly documented that half the "victims" alleged at Racak cannot be identified by age - this despite the fact that the ICTY had more than 4 months to discern this. For example, the next list of specific charges in the same indictment against Milosevic and four of his aides list a total of 185 "massacred" civilians, 176 of which are listed with names, ages, etc- but those charges were supposedly investigated during the NATO bombings in Yugoslavia, where interviewing witnesses, collecting forensic evidence, etc would have been far more difficult. But this fact of unknown particulars of the dead would tally with the Yugoslav government's claim that most of those killed were KLA fighters from many areas engaged in military units; apparently many of the dead were unknown to the residents of Racak. The indictment is also riddled with examples of ignorance of the facts, even referring to "an autonomous" Kosovo - knowing full well that the meetings between the parties at Rambouillet did not conclude any agreements in this regard. The indictment also refers to the shelling and bombing of the civilians at Racak on Jan 15/99, despite OSCE claims, press reports, the Yugoslav government, and film records to the contrary. Not one civilian was reported killed at Racak by this so-called "indiscriminate" shelling of the Yugoslavs.

The minimum pre-conditions necessary for the Yugoslavs to have carried out a "massacre" of unarmed civilians in Racak were non-existent. For one thing, OSCE observers watched continuously from safe positions overlooking the village - at no time did they, or the press, report the parading of beaten, tortured civilians to the outskirts of Racak for summary execution. For another, the area where many of the bodies were found was near one of the KLA positions that day; the alleged Yugoslav government-ordered executioners would have had to expose themselves to gunfire in that area in order to commit these acts of which they are accused. No doubt any "massacre" would have been conducted behind the safety of, or inside of, a building in Racak, not in open fields near a ditch, as the ICTY alleges. The time factor-barely at most a few hours to find, round up, question, beat, march, then execute forty males- also lends criticism to the purported series of events detailed in the indictment.

And all of this finding, arresting, beating, torturing, marching, and killing of 40 men would have had to have been done in such a way as to defy the forensic results which positively indicated no wounds of torture, beatings, handcuffing, etc were inflicted- and, the automatic gunfire alleged to have killed these people would have had to come from many different directions, from many different angles, from many different distances, and with little or no shell casings and with little or no blood at the site of this "execution".

The number of found bodies has also been a sad example of the disreputable nature of this indictment by the ICTY. Publicly, OSCE has at times claimed 37 dead; the Americans, 45; Albanian sources, 51. In addition, OSCE claims that 2/3 of approximately 20 bodies found massacred outside Racak in a ditch were over 50 years of age, while the ICTY indictment regarding Racak lists 2 out of 40 in the same age category. William Walker claims he counted 45 bodies, while earlier-arriving OSCE members only claim to have found 38. This only supports the "staging" claims, not the ICTY indictment - it is quite possible that at the time the first OSCE arrived the day after the battle to investigate a discovery of a massacre, only 38 bodies had been sufficiently "arranged" by the KLA; by the time Walker arrived, 7 more had been "arranged" as well.

The ICTY indictment regarding Racak also fails to mention any of this; nor does it mention the faked transcripts of fake telephone conversations supposedly intercepted by satellites and spy equipment which purportedly showed orders being given to a Yugoslav policeman to "come down hard" on the villagers in Racak on the day in question.

I wonder also, for instance, how many British-based judges, investigators, and prosecutors at the Hague would dismiss themselves from this case as a result of British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook's claim that, "Our observers saw absolutely no evidence of fighting" between the KLA and the Yugoslav forces - this despite the fact that Briton Neal Strechan of OSCE has publicly acknowledged that he was one of the observers invited by the Yugoslavs to Racak to watch on the day in question.

This sequence of events seems all too familiar and predictable:

Feb 5th, 1994: 68 die in bombing of marketplace; Serbs accused, UN condemns, independent reports say no Serbian involvement, soon after NATO supplies air support to those fighting Serbs

Aug 28, 1995: 37 die in bombing of another marketplace; Serbs accused, UN condemns, 4 independent military reports say no Serbian involvement, soon after NATO supplies air support, and heavier bombing, to assist those fighting Serbs.

Jan 15, 1999: 40(?) die at Racak, Yugoslavia; Serbs accused of atrocities, UN condemns, 3 teams of pathologists do not conclude any atrocities took place, soon after NATO supplies air support, and "smart" bombing, in a campaign claiming 2000 civilian lives in 78 days (and 13 tanks) - to assist drug-trafficking armed separatists fighting Yugoslav forces.

This concludes the analysis of the Racak segment of the ICTY indictment against Milosevic and four aides. The patterns and agendas evident in this specific charge against Milosevic and four aides regarding Racak are not unique, as has been seen. In case anyone thinks this is simply an aberration and not consistent with ICTY methods and motives, take care to note that the president of Yugoslavia and four of his aides are also charged with crimes against humanity and violations of the laws and customs of war with regards to events which are alleged to have occured Mar 25, Mar 26, Mar 27/99 - immediately after the beginning of the bombing aggression by NATO, when no investigation was possible. Again, that is the point - it is not the truthfullness of the charges, it is the airing of them publicly as a coincided effort with cynical Western agendas that determines the purpose of this ICTY fiasco. And why hasn't this obvious pattern of propaganda-warfare been exposed by the so-called independant media? Or the opposition members of the home legislatures of the bombers themselves? It seems they are all on the same team.


Sources

This completes the study of the ICTY indictment charges against Slobodan Milosevic, Milan Milutinovic,Nikola Sainovic, Dragoljub Ojdanic, and Vlajko Stojiljkovic, regarding the events at Racak, Yugoslavia, Jan 15/99.

Regrettably, the actual forensic reports by the teams headed by Dr.s Ranta, Kuzmicov, and Dobricanin are unavailable through my searches for them on the Internet, and my repeated requests to OSCE, University of Pristina, and the University of Helsinki, for these reports. However, we do have as a matter of public record the statements of the Racak analysis by these forensic pathologists as well as public statements from individual members of the teams.

The UN and the ICTY also have been accorded the opportunity to read and contribute to these reports; so far, they have declined. As well, over 300 Canadian Members of Parliament have had the opportunity to contribute information and/or rebuttals concerning this analysis of the Yugoslav
police operation at Racak - they have all remained silent thus far.

Thanks to my wife, Danielle Fairlie, for her research, technical and moral support. Also thanks to Predrag Tosic for his co-operation and direction. Rade Kuzmanovic and his fellow staff at A.I.M. were also very helpful and supportive.

Any readers with new information concerning the Racak charges in the ICTY indictment are welcome to forward them to Predrag at p-tosic@cs.uiuc.edu or Chris at nibiru@mnsi.net

Remember, Racak is the ONLY DATED CHARGE in the entire ICTY indictment against Milosevic, et al, before NATO bombings, and this particular allegation is cited as the major plank in the "moral high ground" argument used for justification by the bombers.

All information used in these reports has been corroborated.


The following is a list of links citing the internet sources used in this Racak analysis:

The Jurist - The ICTY Indictment
O.S.C.E. Homepage
McAdams - Paraffin Testing
Firearms Forensic Tutorial - Examination of Gunshot Residue (SEM/EDX)
Serbia-Info - Racak search results
The Strategic Issues Research Institute - The Racak killings, A massacre?
Kosovo Forum - The Racak massacre, A brief for the defense
International Action Centre - The "Racak massacre" questioned by French media
BBC News - Racak killings: Who says what?
BBC News - Pathologist: 'No Kosovo massacre'
Report of the EU Forensic Expert Team on the Racak Incident
Media Focus - Racak in headlines
TFF Features - NATO's war of aggression against Yugoslavia: An Overview
TFF Features - President Milosevic and 4 other FRY...
Srpska Mreza - The Racak File: Truths and manipulation
Workers World - Kosovo massacre was faked
Liberation 21 - Nine questions concerning the Racak dead
Compuserb - Liar, Liar! - Bill Dorich on Madeleine Albright
SMIP - Facts Re: Racak Police Operation 1/15/99
Kosova Daily Report - Serb Forensic Experts say Albanian was Tortured to Death
One World Search Engine - Various Links
Human Satto - Various Links


The following links thanks to Rade Kuzmanovic and staff from A.I.M. ( www.aim.ac.yu ):
http://www.newsroom.co.nz/stories/GE9901/S00082.htm
http://www.euronews.net/en/news/january/19990121/ennews0121e.htm
http://www.mfa.gov.lv/ENG/NEWS/PRESREL/Pr990118-1.htm
http://www.bergenrecord.com/morenews/yugo23199901236.htm
http://www.uk-us-trade.org/BIStext/FORDOM/Balkans/Kosovo/17jan99.stm
http://news.bbc.co.uk/hi/english/world/europe/newsid_260000/260211.stm
http://www.hoosiertimes.com/stories/1999/02/11/news.990211_A6_JFM06074.sto
http://netmarket.fairfax.com.au/news/9901/19/pageone/pageone3.html
http://www.msnbc.com/news/233809.asp
http://www.state.gov/www/policy_remarks/1999/990118_djohnson_racak.html
http://usa.grmbl.com/s19990204g.html
http://www.balkanunity.demon.co.uk/serbia/indexen.htm
http://www.usia.gov/regional/eur/balkans/kosovo/kbkgrnd.htm
http://www.workers.org/ww/1999/kosovo0204.html
http://www.javanet.com/~gbozovic/info.html
http://compuserb.com/walkoute.htm
http://www.srpska-mreza.com/library/facts/albanian-solution.html
http://www.stopthewar.freeuk.com/comments.html
http://www.kauhajoki.fi/~herantam/
http://cnn.vg.no/VERDEN/9903/17/4405.html
http://www.mtv3.fi/uutiset/arkisto/9901/990119/9901190111.html
http://www.iwpr.net/focus/focus07_eng.htm
http://www.srpska-mreza.com/library/facts/albanian-solution.html


Chris Soda, co-manager of YugoslaviaInfo www.egroups.com/group/yugoslaviainfo/
Windsor, Ontario, Canada
nibiru@mnsi.net

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