Our government is capable of swift and efficient action when it decides that the regime in a foreign country has outlived its usefulness, or has become a “threat” to what passes for national security inside the Beltway. Grenada, Panama, and Haiti all come to mind, but the methods deployed in this geographic area tend to be rather crude, and their direct application outside our hemispheric backyard is politically risky.

More subtle, and in the long run more efficient, is the method of cultivating internal allies and potential political proteges among the elites in the target country. This approach demands more than mere direct agents of influence, epitomized in the former Jamaican prime minister Edward Seaga, who was affectionately known to his countrymen as CIA-aga. It demands people whose personal and political credo corresponds to the self-proclaimed values of the post-Christian Western world. And so, from Prague to Tirana, from Riga to Bratislava, the chattering classes are repeating in a dozen strange tongues the mantra of “human rights,” “free markets,” “democracy.” It is their ticket (so they think) to the Good Life of six-lane freeways, Quarterpounders, and televisions with over 100 channels.

To these new agents of “American” influence the credo is often delivered indirectly. What Madeleine Albright only hints, the Soros Foundation will proudly proclaim. To be condescending about one’s ancestors—ignorant peasants, anyway—is cool; to be aloof about one’s national culture is a must, if one is to get that elusive scholarship or at least a six-week tour of the States sponsored by the USIA. “They do not understand the music but they love the sound it makes.”

In the former Yugoslavia, in Tito’s lifetime and in the decade following his death in 1980, there had been no serious attempt by the United States to help develop or cultivate an alternative political team in Belgrade among the narrow stratum which could be considered friendly to “Western democracy.” In accordance with the Kennan Doctrine, Tito’s dictatorship enjoyed America’s blank check to do as it pleased domestically for as long as it shunned total rapprochement with Moscow.

Serious and constant violations of basic liberty and human dignity in “Tito’s Yugoslavia,” clampdowns on real or imagined opponents of the system, periodical purges of unreliable university professors, market-oriented managers and alleged nationalists of all shades, were not allowed to distort the Western liberals’ story of Yugoslavia as a “special case.” Tito was not “our” S.O.B., but at least he was not “theirs” either. Even Radio Free Europe, which proved to be a surprisingly efficient propaganda tool in Central-Eastern Europe, was not allowed to broadcast in Serbo-Croatian.

Increasingly obvious structural weaknesses in the Soviet Bloc in the late I980’s did not bring about a change. Even following the meteoric rise of Slobodan Miloševic, the man often presented as the embodiment of all that America detests, American diplomats in Belgrade totally refrained from “cultivating” any potential political alternatives to Miloševic’s ruling team. As Yugoslavia was nearing the abyss, and Germany proved increasingly unrestrained in its support for the two most vocal separatist-minded republics, Croatia and Slovenia, America refrained from making a bid for real influence in Belgrade.

In retrospect, this lack of involvement in a strategically sensitive part of Europe is unsurprising. There is now ample evidence to suggest that the United States did not build up alternatives to Miloševic because it had decided—early in the Yugoslav conflict—that his remaining in power would serve its interests in the region.

It would be beyond the intended scope of this article to analyze the reasons for the decision in the winter of 1991-92 to support the Croats and the Bosnian Muslims in the violent disintegration of Yugoslavia. While the “why” of this decision is still open to debate, the fact itself is beyond dispute; the United States’ decision to defeat “the Serbs” has been the salient feature of American policy in the Balkans for the past five years. The corollary to such a policy was the need to weaken the Serb side from without—through political isolation, U.N. sanctions, media-induced vilification, and ultimately military action—and from within, through the uninterrupted, unhindered rule of Slobodan Miloševic and his team, and through the exercise of their influence over the western Serbs in Bosnia and the Krajina.

In order to illustrate what Miloševic did not have to fear from the American side, let us remember how quickly opponents to communist regimes were built up and promoted elsewhere in the region by the United States. A good example is provided by the launching of Charter 77 in Prague. Until 1988 very few people in Czechoslovakia, and even fewer in the outside world, were even aware of the Charter’s existence. This groupiscule of chain-smoking intellectuals tended to preach to the choir, in each other’s apartments, on the virtues of democracy and human rights, on the duty of the artist to preserve his integrity, and on the meaning of existence under “Real Socialism.” It was a worthy endeavor, moderately interesting to the handful of Western freelance journalists paying their once-a-year visit to Prague; but it was unlikely to bring down the state. Neither the founders of the organization nor Gustav Husak’s security service (which had them penetrated very early on) regarded the Charter as a serious threat to the regime.

And yet, when the structural weaknesses of the Soviet Bloc led planners in Washington to decide that it was time to develop a Western-friendly alternative in Prague, an efficient mechanism sprung into action without ado. Quasi-independent foundations (for democracy, human rights, artistic freedom, or whatever) suddenly discovered and lionized Havel & Company. Sunday supplements of the New York Times and the Post were full of “in-depth profiles” of Havel, in color no less; lecture tours for the members (and suddenly numerous “sympathizers”) of the Charter were swiftly put together by the Council for Foreign Relations and the USIA International Visitor Program, with a stop at the National Press Club an obligatory item on the tour.

This campaign not only created the perception abroad that the Charter movement and its leader were the obvious alternative to the communists, but, more importantly, it skyrocketed Havel’s influence inside his country, where his means of communication with “the people” had hitherto been nonexistent. Thanks to the Voice of America and Radio Free Europe—who were “only reporting” what others were saying and writing—Havel came to be perceived by many Czechs as a viable and desirable alternative to the increasingly moribund regime. When the moment came, with the “velvet revolution” of 1989, the slogan “Havel to the Castle” (i.e., the presidential palace) “spontaneously” came to the lips of a nation which was sick and tired of communism, but which had not been able to develop its own alternative to the old team. The rest is history, including the disintegration of the Czechoslovak state, the proposed inclusion of the Czech Republic in an extended NATO, and the wholesale subjection of the Czech economy to foreign interests, from the gigantic Skoda Works (now under German control) to the old Pilsner and Budweiser breweries, under new, American management.

A similar scenario occurred the next year with Bulgarian leader Zhelyu Zhelyev, albeit with less effort and cost. But the simplest and cheapest such blitz was applied in Albania, where Sali Berisha was selected as the preferred candidate from the American point of view to bring down Hoxha’s successors, and the newly opened American Embassy in Tirana effectively acted as his unofficial campaign headquarters in 1991-92. According to an informed Washingtonian, Berisha’s victory “cost us a mere eight million bucks.” What his fall is yet to cost the people of Albania remains to be seen.

In early 1990, as the first post-1945 opposition parties were being established in Serbia, American policymakers had a wide range of potential choices on the emerging political map. Had there been any serious intent to undermine Miloševic’s position—at a time when the Serbian president was ostensibly snubbing the United States by his refusal to talk to Ambassador Warren Zimmerman, and systematically undermining Prime Minister Ante Markovic who was, in turn, ostensibly supported by Washington—it was possible to choose between a variety of emerging personalities. Probably all of them would have been eager to play the role of Havel: Vuk Draškovic, Dragoljub Micunovic, even Zoran Djindjic would have gladly taken the opportunity to become the Uncle Sam-anointed future leader of their nation. But this did not happen.

On the contrary, from the beginning of the acute stage of the Yugoslav crisis—during the premiership of Ante Markovic in 1989-91—the opposition to Miloševic was written off in the American media and in political circles as “weak, divided, and irrelevant.” At the same time, curiously, Miloševic himself was being vilified and grudgingly admired as “the strong man of the Balkans,” whose hold on the Serbs was beyond dispute and not open to challenge. This attitude did not change as a result of the huge demonstrations against the regime in Belgrade in March 1991, and the beginning of the war in Croatia. The media, led by the New York Times, were increasingly shrill in blaming “Miloševic’s Serbia” for the conflict, but without ever suggesting any alternative to him.

It was in June 1992 that it became clear that the United States wanted Miloševic to remain in power, and that it was not going to do anything to jeopardize his position. The sanctions against the newly-fangled “Federal Republic of Yugoslavia” had just been introduced, on the insistence of the Bush administration. The pretext was found in the first of a string of Muslim bomb stunts in Sarajevo—the famous “bread line massacre,” stage-managed by Muslims for the benefit of the world media and politicians.

Many Serbs were infuriated by the sanctions, which they perceived as harmful not to the ruling establishment but to the people of Serbia; initially, however, Miloševic seemed unlikely to reap any political benefits from American policy. He was also widely perceived as a blunderer, whose inability to define and defend national interests in the summer of 1991 produced the dramatic worsening of the overall Serb position in 1992. In fact, the opposition in Belgrade seemed to be gaining momentum; their preparations for a grandiose Saint Vitus’ Day rally that year were accompanied by a string of pronouncements from various national institutions asking Miloševic to step down.

The attitude even of his former allies was summarized in the words of the well-known poet Matija Beckovic, “Go, so that Serbia may live.” The prevalent view in Belgrade, especially among the opposition, was that the anti-Serb policy dictated from Washington had a lot to do with Miloševic’s communist pedigree. They were unable to grasp that what they saw as a perfectly reasonable principle—the right of all constituent nations of the former Yugoslavia to self-determination, Serbs included—could be rejected by the “democratic West” in favor of preserving arbitrarily drawn boundaries between the republics. Accordingly, at different ends of the political spectrum in Serbia there existed a consensus on one point: if Washington were to send a strong public signal that Miloševic was an obstacle to the more balanced treatment of overall Serb demands and aspirations, his position would become literally untenable. The democrats were hoping for such a signal, the communists feared it.

At that moment, in mid-June 1992, came a remarkable—and, as it turned out, shrewd—statement from Miloševic. He said he would gladly tender his resignation, and leave politics altogether, if he believed that his departure would improve the Serb position; but the problem—as he put it—was not him personally, but the anti-Serb policy of the United States.

This moment would have been eagerly exploited by an alert Foggy Bottom strategist, had there been any desire to weaken Miloševic. It would have been sufficient for James Baker, or his No. 2, Lawrence Eagleburger, to state that Mr. Miloševic was quite wrong, that the United States in fact regarded the regime in Serbia as part of the problem. Without any political price, or indeed commitment, it was possible to undermine Miloševic—possibly fatally so—by hinting that the change at the top in Belgrade could contribute to a reexamination of the overall American attitude to the Serbs in general, and to the issue of recently introduced U.N. sanctions in particular. The effect of such a statement at that time could have been immeasurable. At the very least Miloševic would have been hard pressed to respond to such a challenge, and his bluff of “resignation” would have been called. He would have been seen for what he is—a power-obsessive former apparatchik who is ready and willing to sacrifice any national interest for the sake of remaining where he still is today.

Washington’s response was the exact opposite of this. In an interview with National Public Radio, two days after Miloševic’s statement. Ambassador Zimmerman said that it was “of no consequence” to the United States who was in power in Serbia; but that whoever it be, he would have to observe the will of the “international community,” which in Zimmerman’s scheme of things means the United States. In effect, Zimmerman confirmed and endorsed Miloševic’s claim that the problem was not him per se, or his power structure, but the rigid unwillingness to validate any Serb claims in Washington.

A week later, also in June 1992, this attitude was confirmed when I attended a meeting in Washington with the assistant to the National Security Advisor for European Affairs, Jenone Walker. Referring to the sanctions in the context of Miloševic’s offer to resign, she stated that—”quite apart from Miloševic”—they would stay in force until “all current and potential VIC sources of conflict in the former Yugoslavia were removed, agreements signed and sealed, and respected by the Serbs to the satisfaction of the U.S. government.” Game, set, and match—Miloševic.

Ms. Walker’s boss, Brent Scowcroft, was less arrogant but equally frank when he said that the Bush administration “has no view on the political future of Serbia,” but had some definite ideas about the way the conflict should be settled. It boiled down to the demand for the Serbs’ capitulation to Franjo Tudjman in Zagreb and Alija Izetbegovic in Sarajevo.

This attitude provided an enormous boost to Miloševic in his attempts to restabilize his regime in late 1992. At that time he was still pretending to be at least implicitly supportive of the Serbs west of the Drina, in Bosnia and in the Krajina, and his apologists could point to these statements from Washington as proof that any radical change at the helm would be detrimental to the Serbs’ national interest. The American government effectively endorsed the claim of the Belgrade regime that “there is no alternative” to the Big Boss, and that any other government in Serbia would have to lay prostrate, beg for mercy, and sign unconditional surrender—consigning the 2.5 million western Serbs to the tender mercies of their enemies.

At the same time, Miloševic’s continued rule in Serbia was used by the American media pack, led by the New York Times and the foreign policy establishment in Washington, as proof that the sanctions were justified and necessary, and that the collective satanization of the Serb nation could proceed unabated. “The Butcher of the Balkans” made the front page of several glossy news magazines, with stage-managed photos of “concentration camps” and fact-free stories of “systematic rapes” inside the covers. Managed Mass Democracy was getting the Managed Mass Media it deserved.

The proponents of democratic change in Serbia, although somewhat demoralized, had nevertheless continued to try to get Western circles interested in a political alternative to Miloševic . I was involved in some of these attempts. At the end of July 1992, I accompanied Crown Prince Alexander on a visit to Canadian Prime Minister Brian Mulroney in Ottawa. Prior to the meeting I drafted a detailed proposal, which was presented by the Crown Prince to Mulroney, that the Canadian government invite a delegation of prominent opposition figures from Belgrade to visit Ottawa. So, when in the course of our conversation the Prime Minister asked what he could do to help the cause of democracy in Serbia, we were able to present him with a very specific set of ideas.

Mulroney eagerly endorsed the document. Immediately, in our presence, he dictated a memorandum to his chef du cabinet for the Ministry of External Affairs, suggesting that “representatives of the democratic opposition in Serbia” come to testify before the foreign affairs committee of the Lower House. Before leaving we had agreed that they would be given an opportunity to speak not only on the situation in Serbia but also on the war, and put forward the other side of the story. Even though he did not explicitly endorse our argument that sanctions hit the people rather than the regime, Mulroney seemed prepared to provide a platform for the proponents of democratic change in Serbia who were willing to expose this view in a reasonable and rational way.

Encouraged by this meeting, I stayed in touch with Mulroney’s foreign policy advisor, Paul Heinbecker, who requested a list of suggested names of invitees. This I duly prepared, taking care to include people with impeccable democratic credentials, fluent English and French speakers, some of whom would consider themselves patriotic, albeit with a small “p.” All of them were truly devoid of any hint of chauvinism. It was agreed that the visit should take place six to eight weeks later, in the second half of September 1992.

After that there was a long period of silence. Following my repeated inquires by phone and fax I finally received a call from Ottawa in the second half of August, in which I was told that the visit was called off. The reason? Apparently some Canadians thought it would be a good idea to include Washington in the itinerary, assuming that a possible testimony by Miloševic’s opponents before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee would be welcome to the White House and the State Department. When they contacted the administration, however, they were told that the proposed visit was “undesirable,” because “the opposition in Serbia is composed of nationalists who are no better than Miloševic.” I was told—off the record, of course—that a “strong signal” was given to the Canadians that, in Washington’s view, they should not go ahead with the visit themselves.

And so the sanctions remained, and so did Miloševic. They became inseparable. The sanctions had proved an absolute boon to Miloševic. First, he could blame them for the abysmal economic situation in the country, which was in fact due to the structural defects of an inefficient socialist economy—an economy he was unwilling to reform on political grounds. Secondly, he could use the sanctions as a pretext for the policy of gradual, and (by 1995) total, abandonment of the western Serbs, thereby eliminating a potentially serious threat to his power base in Serbia proper.

Worse still, Miloševic could observe with equanimity the exodus of about a quarter of a million predominantly young and well-educated urban Serbs in 1992-95, whose decision to emigrate was most often prompted by the sanctions. Those who had provided the backbone of political opposition to his government in 1990-91 were leaving, and he was staying. The fruits of the sanctions are obvious only now, when his power has been shaken. The near-destruction of the remaining urban middle class—which was hit hardest by the sanctions—means that the critical mass for that final push is simply lacking in Belgrade, regardless of the looming social, economic, and moral collapse of the nation.

Having already reached my own conclusions about the view in Washington concerning Miloševic, I was not surprised that the United States persisted with the same course in the fall of 1992, when it had an opportunity to do otherwise. The prime minister of the rump Yugoslav federation at that time was Milan Panic, a flamboyant Californian businessman who was installed with Miloševic’s approval but soon refused to do his bidding. In order to enhance his credibility. Panic was desperately appealing for even a token gesture of support from Washington. He had specifically asked that humanitarian deliveries of heating oil be exempted from the sanctions (the winter season was approaching) and hinted that such a symbolic gesture would at least give him some leverage in his attempts to unify the opposition.

But Panic was rebuffed by the United States. It was clear that his conciliatory policy—exemplified by the complete withdrawal of the last Yugoslav troops from Croatia—went unrewarded. The benefactor was Miloševic, yet again, who could ridicule Panic as a pathetic buffoon, a trickster who was bluffing the nation with his claim that he could count on Western support against the president of Serbia. Emboldened, in December 1992, Miloševic called snap elections.

In spite of considerable handicaps (the greatest of which was state control over the media, especially television) Milan Panic—by now Miloševic’s unrestrained opponent and presidential candidate of the opposition—was unexpectedly doing quite well in the polls. The gap between him and Miloševic, considerable at the beginning of the campaign, was reportedly shrinking fast. And then, yet again, a statement came from Washington which suddenly improved Miloševic’s position. Just two days before the vote in Serbia, the lame-duck Secretary of State, Lawrence Eagleburger, declared that—in his opinion—Slobodan Miloševic should be indicted as a war criminal.

Now, this man Eagleburger knows his Belgrade, and understands the Serbian mentality. He had spent many years in Belgrade and had been culturally attuned to the place well enough to know of inat, that hardheaded and often self-defeating spite so typical of the Serb psyche. Eagleburger must have realized that the best way to rally people around an increasingly unpopular leader was to “tell” them just how bad he was, especially from the “American” point of view. There can be but little doubt that he was fully aware who would be helped by such a statement. Unsurprisingly, the clip with Eagleburger’s diatribe was eagerly carried by state television and all government-controlled media in Serbia. I know personally of an old Belgrader, a lifelong anticommunist, who voted for Miloševic that one time—”just to show the Americans.” Poor fellow, little did he know that he was acting just as expected, and desired, by those same Americans.

Only someone unacquainted with the true objectives and modus operandi of American foreign policy will be surprised by such a gap between officially proclaimed objectives and reality. Let us therefore jump four years to our time, and to the massive wave of antigovernment protests which swept over Serbia last November. It took more than a week of continuous street protests in Belgrade for the State Department to issue the first (mild) rebuke of Miloševic. “The Serbian leader continues to be a necessary diplomatic partner,” pontificated the New York Times in a November 28 editorial, while American diplomats in Belgrade were quietly advising protesters to refrain from demanding Miloševic’s resignation. The British ambassador in Belgrade, Ivor Roberts, enjoyed unrestricted access to Miloševic, and had been active in trying to diffuse the current wave of protests. Such ambivalence prompted the Times (of London) to bewail Western disregard for “the ruthlessly undemocratic nature” of the regimes in Serbia and Croatia, warning that the view of Miloševic as a pillar of regional stability was inherently flawed.

So what is the secret of Miloševic’s success in making himself indispensable? The answer is simple: his readiness to play the role of the New World Order Gauleiter in the Balkans. The Serbs of Bosnia and Croatia, unwilling to submit to Franjo Tudjman and Alija Izetbegovic but unable to resist without help from Serbia itself, were doomed to defeat once Miloševic decided that they could pose a threat to his undisputed authority. In the words of Vojislav Koštunica, a leading opposition politician in Belgrade,

Miloševic decided some time in early 1993 that he would rather have total control in a very small Serbia, than risk competition from Pale and Knin. The logical outcome of this was his preference for the Croatian victory in the Krajina, and for the Muslim hegemony in Bosnia. That explains why he did nothing to help the Serbs in Croatia, and that’s why he has sold the Bosnian Serbs down the river at Dayton.

By betraying the struggle for self-determination of the Serbs west of the Drina, by calmly stabbing them in the back, Miloševic has shrewdly purchased the lasting benevolence of those who run today’s “Western democracies.” Indeed, it was with the skins of the Bosnian and Krajina Serbs that he has turned himself from “the butcher of the Balkans” into “a necessary partner.”

Having ignored the very existence of the Serb opposition to Miloševic for the best part of the past decade, the United States government was forced to make some token gestures of support when his position seemed seriously threatened. But even then, overtures were directed only at those figures in Belgrade which were judged “safe” from the globalist perspective. This meant that the three-party coalition Zajedno (Together) needed to be quickly Havelized, and subsequently kept in reserve—just in case the Serbs do not listen to the voice of wisdom from Washington, and decide to do a Ceausescu on Miloševic.

It hardly needs stating that America’s support of the Zajedno coalition has nothing to do with the alleged democratic credentials of its three parties, and everything to do with the degree of its leaders’ professed readiness to act in accordance with the diktat from Washington. Hence the sad spectacle of all Zajedno coalition leaders swearing by the prevailing form of social and political organization in Western Europe and the United States, and invoking it as a panacea for Serbia’s many ills. Vuk Draškovic, Zoran Djindjic, and Vesna Pešic; the trio was successfully portrayed in the West as “the opposition” in Serbia. The troika rejected any serious debate on the causes, meaning, and lessons of the tragedy which befell their nation in this century, and by doing so, it reduced its target audience to segments of the Serbian body-politic which is deemed politically correct by Clinton and Albright: the segments that are submissive to “the West,” a-national to the point of self-hatred, brazenly materialistic, anti-traditionalist, and secular.

With such an opposition, it is unsurprising that the popular discontent with Miloševic could not have been channeled into a victory for his enemies. The Zajedno coalition has been warned in no uncertain terms by Washington to shun all “unsuitables,” not only open nationalists such as Vojislav Seselj, but even thoroughly moderate patriots with impeccable democratic credentials (such as Dr. Koštunica) who are simply not kosher enough for the U.S. State Department.

The resultant failure to forge a united opposition front against Miloševic was described in some Western capitals, yet again, as the failure of the Serbian opposition. In the meantime, Miloševic is in the process of reconsolidating his grip on power after a tricky period. Western chanceries may breath a sigh of relief. From the standpoint of the American Embassy in Belgrade, the policy has paid off. An internally weakened Miloševic is allowed to linger on, but his weakness guarantees his even greater pliability when he is faced with new demands—over Kosovo, Sanjak, The Hague Tribunal, or whatever. On the opposition front only those who swear by the Big Mac, and who speak the language of ten-second CNN sound-bites, are recognized as potential alternatives to the Big Boss.

This “democratic” opposition still parrots old slogans from the 1980’s about something called “United Europe,” pretending that this project is miraculously still open to those less fortunate nations of the Old Continent which happen to adhere to the Orthodox tradition. No less embarrassing is the “pro-Americanism” of Draškovic and Pešic. Draškovic, the Balkan Candide without the innocence, does not understand America, but he thinks he knows what is expected of him in terms of lip-service and rhetoric. Ms. Pešic, worse still, rather likes what she finds in its centers of power; she is the ambitious clone of Hillary Clinton and Susan Sontag. The story those two tell the Serbs after their low-level meetings in Washington is a curious mix of brown-nosing, ignorance, and outright manipulation: Sesame Street blended with Agitprop. What they do not tell, perhaps because they do not know, is how deeply they are despised by their Washingtonian interlocutors. It is useful, having Quislings handy; but it is unpleasant having to humor them. The job is usually left to junior staffers and GS-11 protocol bureaucrats.

The movers and shakers can afford to be aloof with their would-be clients from Belgrade. Serbia is not a very important place per se, and there is no cost, political or otherwise, to being rude to the Serbs. The place does not matter, but it was useful for an exercise in the destruction of traditional nationhood, New World Order-style. The Serbs’ striving to remain part of one state when Yugoslavia started disintegrating—a desire as natural as it is reasonable—was proclaimed from inside the Beltway to be the deadliest of sins by those whose goal is a world in which any bonds of loyalty borne out of centuries of shared experience are eradicated. The Serbs in Belgrade were to be forbidden to help the western Serbs, in the Krajina and in Bosnia, in their struggle to be the masters of their own destiny in the lands they had inhabited long before the first Pilgrim Fathers celebrated their first Thanksgiving. And now, the United States has the president of the place, as well as his supposedly implacable political opponents, shouting “Amen.”

With such ringing diplomatic success, it may be too much to expect a shift in Western policy towards the Serbs in general, or Miloševic in particular. Such policy is shaped by people who have failed to recognize—or, worse still, understand but do not care—that the same forces which have torn Bosnia asunder are also present in many American cities, as well as in Marseilles, Berlin, and Amsterdam.

Yes, “Bosnia” is bound to happen in Southern California, in Yorkshire, and in Brandenburg, if our society remains on the same course charted by the pseudoelites who run America and Western Europe today. These corifei of rights without liberty, the high priests of lives without substance, are not different from Slobodan Miloševic, the seedy apparatchik who had never, ever been that “Serb nationalist leader” of a thousand Western editorials. Throughout his decade in power they have acted as his discrete mentors, because they are anti-Serb; and throughout the wars of Yugoslav succession they have been anti-Serb because they are anti-American, and anti-European.

The scars of this past decade will take a long time to heal, even if America eventually shakes off the ignominy of the Clinton presidency, and even if the current push for the “United Europe” is defeated by the joint efforts of all who love Europe too much to allow its destruction through integration. But whether the emaciated remnants of Christendom on both sides of the Atlantic still have the