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|1992 - 1994, The War and Ethnic Cleansing|
|War Looms While the West Appeases|
The Muslims and Croats in Bosnia vote overwhelmingly for independence, with most Bosnian Serbs boycotting the vote.
With Serbian support, Bosnian Serb rebels declare a Serbian republic within Bosnia.
Hoping to stave off attack by the Serbians, the U.S. and N.A.T.O. countries recognize Bosnia, but the attack has already begun, as Serbs raze Bosnian villages, and expell, rape, or kill all non-Serbs in their path. Sarajevo is placed under seige.
During the Summer, Serb concentration camps are discovered by shocked journalists.
The London conference produced agreements between all parties. However, all accords were immediately ignored or broken by Serbia's Milosevic. London advises Washington not to use air power, lest it ‘provoke’ the Serbs. President George Bush (I) changes U.S. policy and decides the arms embargo against Bosniam should be lifted. Britain and France [with troops in the U.N. Protection Force (UNProFor) and the U.S. with none] block the lifting because of risk to their own troops with increased fighting.
Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton wins the U.S. presidential election.
|Genocide Under the United Nations' Protection|
The formerly autonomous Serbian province of Kosovo asks that it be taken over by the U. N. as a trusteeship.
The Vance-Owen plan to split Bosnia in two is proposed.
The Bosnian vice-president, Hakija Turaljic, is shot to death at point blank range when his U.N. protected convoy is stopped by the Serbs. UNProFor offered no resistance, and later blames Bosnia, not the Serbs, for creating an "atmosphere of anxiety" among the Serbs. During this period, UNProFor in Sarajevo uses lights to pick out people fleeing at night, which are then shot by Serb snipers. The U.N. says that part of the deal they made with the Serbs is to not allow people to leave the city.
Serbian rape camps are discovered, but UNProFor says helping captive Muslim women is not part of its mandate. UNProFor is accused of failing to protect Bosnians and appeasing the Serbs in order to avoid Serb attacks on U.N. forces. On this day, an E.C. investigation finds that Serbs have raped up to 20,000 Muslim women.
Bill Clinton is sworn in as U.S. president.
The evacuation of Sebrenica, under Serb siege, begins under the protection of U.N. convoys.
For the third time, the Bosnian Serb parliament, and the Bosnian Serbs in a referendum, reject the Vance-Owen peace plan.
The U.N. Security Council declares Sarajevo, and five other Bosnian cities that are Muslim strongholds, as “safe havens” for non-combatants.
The U.N. Security Council votes to establish a war crimes tribunal.
The moderate Yugoslav president, Dobrica Cosic, who angered the nationalist Serbs when he urged the Bosnian Serbs to accept the peace plan, is voted out of office by the parliament. Serbian President Milosevic led the move to oust Cosic.
The U.S. begins to send military personnel to Macedonia to prevent the spread of war to that new republic ( (it worked, with only a few hundred U.S. service personnel deployed).
A mortar shell lands in a crowded Sarajevo market. The televised carnage sparks international reaction, and moves the U.S. and N.A.T.O. to declare a heavy weapon twelve-mile exclusion zone around Sarajevo.
The U.S. recognizes Macedonia as an independent country.
In its first military action ever, N.A.T.O. jets bomb Serb positions and temporarily convince Serbs to pull back their weapons.
The U.S. Defense Secretary says the Clinton Administration will not take military action to save the U.N. 'safe haven' of Gorazde, the Bosnian city under Serb siege. The U.N. also says it will not attack the Serbs.
Serbs break through Bosnian defenses at Gorazde and continually pound Gorazde with artillery for days. Thereafter a succession of N.A.T.O. warplane ‘pinprick’ attacks stop Serbian attacks, which then resume after a few days. This cycle is repeated several times.
The Serbs in Bosnia reject a new U.S.-E.C.-Russian proposed peace agreement that would give the Serbs 49% of Bosnia (they have conquered 70%). The plan was earlier reluctantly accepted by the desperate Bosnians, even though it meant surrendering half their country.
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|Bosnia Timeline 3|