What is Albright Really
Promising for the 'New' Yugoslavia?
by Jared Israel (10-8-2000)
As Clinton administration officials wax euphoric over their 'democratic' coup d'état in Yugoslavia, we say, "Why not? What is democracy without a few hundred million dollars in US bribes plus a mob that sacks the parliament building and loots paintings, chairs and computers?"
Is this what they meant by 'free elections'?
Accompanying the expressions of euphoria are promises of Good Things to Come:
"[Secretary of State Madeleine Albright]...promised assistance from Washington and its European allies for reconstruction so that Yugoslavs 'can have the normal life that the rest of the Balkans are beginning to have.'" ('LA Times', 10-6-2000)
Assistance and a normal life. We will be publishing an in-depth look at the meaning of this assistance. The plan for Yugoslavia is a Marshall plan in reverse. Whereas the first Marshall Plan was a Keynsian affair, pumping money into local economies, providing cheap credit and so on, this plan will do the reverse. In essence, Yugoslavia will pay war reparations to the West. More on that in later articles.
Albright promises to bring Yugoslavia "the normal life that the rest of the Balkans are beginning to have."
That suggests the ''rest of the Balkans'' was doing badly before the West took over and now they doing better.
Untrue. The countries the US has 'assisted', particularly Bulgaria and Albania in the Balkans, along with Ukraine and the Russian Federation next door, had a decent standard of living before the West imposed 'structural adjustment' plans. These plans have caused economic and social devastation. And conditions are getting worse.
Albania has in essence no functioning economy. If it weren't for the 1/3 of the labor force that works outside the country, mainly in Italy and Greece, and the money these people remit back to their families, there would be no economy at all. (Albanian economic figures are manipulated to give the false impression of economic improvement. In reality there is almost no economic activity.) Bulgarian industry and social life have been destroyed. Bulgaria and Russia have falling populations.
Radio Free Europe had a story recently that
ONLY 30 PERCENT OF RUSSIAN BIRTHS ARE 'NORMAL.
'The Russian Academy of Medical Sciences told AP on 5 October that the number of normal births in the Russian Federation declined from 45.3 percent in 1992 [after International Monetary Fund 'reforms' were first instituted, which destroyed the Russian social safety net] to just 30 percent in 1999. (RFRFE/RL Newsline, 10/6/00)
The story goes on to blame this terrible statistic mainly on personal problems - excessive drinking and the like. It is true enough that many people in economically devastated countries develop extreme personal problems. But it is important to understand the cause: the International Monetary Fund ordered the Russia government to institute extreme social spending cuts, and these cuts shattered the medical system. People who have been thrown into poverty don't have healthy pregnancies, do they?
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