European Stars And Stripes Newspaper Archives Dec 15 1999, Page 3

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European Stars and Stripes (Newspaper) - December 15, 1999, Darmstadt, Hesse Wednesday december 15, 1999 stars and stripes �?�_______page1.analysts fear Montenegro is Balkans next hot spot by Jon r. Anderson stars and stripes tensions Are rising in what Many believe could be the next Balkan War Days after a stand off with yugoslav troops at Montenegro a main commercial Airport the republics president has decided to hold municipal elections that some observers consider a prelude to a vote for secession from the yugoslav federation. According to sources close to montenegrin president Milo Djukanovic the Western leaning Leader of Yugoslavia a Junior partner has decided to hold elections this Spring. Montenegro and Serbia Are All that remain of the yugoslav federation but Serbia dominates the two controlling the military and most key government positions. Kosovo is a province of Serbia. If the elections favor Djukanovich a party a indicating support for his main platform of reorganizing the republics relationship with Serbia or splitting from Yugoslavia altogether a that could set the stage for a vote for Independence should talks with Belgrade continue to drag on or break Down altogether. Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic has made it Clear any move toward Independence could mean another civil War. Us. Commanders in Kosovo which Borders Montenegro and Serbia have received detailed intelligence updates on the situation in recent weeks and nato officials have been Busy updating contingency plans. A there Are a lot of people focused on Montenegro right now a said one top . Officer in Kosovo. Natos top officer Gen. Wesley k. Clark said As much to reporters last week at the Pentagon. A the situation is very tense in Montenegro a Clark said. A we Are seeing a whole series of Low level but worrisome developments As we watch the pattern of serb activities in this area. We done to pretend to know what or. Milosevic s final intent is but we Are certainly watching this very responding to Clarks comments yugoslav prime minister Momir Bulatovic warned saturday that nato should mind its own business saying the yugoslav army would defend against any intervention. The Saber rattling came after Milosevic seized control of Montenegro a commercial Airport wednesday using serb controlled Federal army troops and armoured vehicles. Although the situation was resolved peacefully with flights continuing the next Day the incident served to underscore the growing rift Between the two republics said Balkan expert Gerard Stoud Mann. A it is clearly one of the most Likely places for trouble in the next year a said Stoud Mann a Swiss Diplomat who manages a team of International observers in Montenegro for the organization for Security and cooperation in Europe. A there is a growing frustration within the population Over suffering from Belgrade a policies Over the past 10 years a he explained. There have already been four civil wars fought As marshal Tito a Yugoslavia has crumbled Over the past decade. Slovenia Croatia Bosnia and most recently Kosovo have All spilled blood to remove themselves from Yugo Hungary a y a Quot it 100 Miles a i 1 a a it it 100km i Croatia u Vojvoda \ Vert. \. Vav Bosnia it Belgrade and Herzeg. Romania Yugoslavia m _ Serbia x montenegro7m cd kids boo 35 Macedonia \ stars and stripes Slavia. Only Macedonia was Able secede without bloodshed. A there Are two chapters yet to be written about Yugoslavia a said one top . Diplomat in Macedonia. A one will be on Belgrade and what happens to or. Milosevic and the other will be on what makes Montenegro different from the other Balkan breakaways said Stoud Mann is that tensions Are not based on ethnic and religious hate but political and economic issues. The vast majority of Montenegro a population is slavic a More than a third of which is ethnic serbian a and share the common background of the orthodox Church. Dragged Down by political and economic isolation however including Steep inflation High unemployment and International embargo brought on by Milosevic a Neo communist and Ultra nationalist policies Many montenegrin see Little Hope for recovery while still tethered to Serbia. That a Why Djukanovic has been trying to distance his government from Serbia while at the same time demanding greater Power within the federation. A there is Clear internal pressure on Djukanovich a government to deliver something on that front a Stoud Mann said. Specifically he said Djukanovic wants More control Over key military posts especially those within Montenegro and greater say in economic issues. A i am very much afraid that if he fails at this a i am not hopeful a the government will have no Choice but to Call a referendum for if elections were held now he said its estimated that some two thirds of montenegrin would cast their ballots in favor of secession. A the question then becomes what happens the next Day a Stoud Mann said. A would Milosevic pour Oil on the fire using paramilitary units As he did before stirring up unrest among those who voted against splitting a indeed he said there Are already reports that paramilitary troops Are in Montenegro preparing for such a scenario. Or might Milosevic activate his still sizable regular army forces As he did in Kosovo to Squash the Independence movement outright Many of those forces Are already based in Montenegro. Stoud Mann said that scenario too is plausible but he noted it May be Tough to convince serb conscripts to fire on brother slavs. A a in a not sure if we had a broader conflict How much he could count on the military a Stoud Mann said. A regardless it would be a Good bet that he would still rely very heavily on the paramilitary and arming serbs inside while some have speculated that Milosevic May be willing to hand Over Montenegro without a fight for his own political reasons Stoud Mann offered that a War in Montenegro would also be a Good distraction from Serbia a internal problems and also help create the right mood for an Independent at Issue is Milosevic a Power base. Barred by current yugoslav Law from running for another term As yugoslav president in 2001 and having already met the term limit As president of the Republic of Serbia a Milosevic could be setting the stage for the presidency of the newly formed country of Serbia. A the one constant in the Balkans is that Milosevic will do whatever it takes to stay in Power a said a senior . Military observer. With opposition to Milosevic already gaining momentum within Serbia itself however Milosevic would need to galvanize Public opinion around him and find a Way to deflect criticism Over letting the yugoslav Republic slip away. A a Short War with Montenegro might be just what he needs a Stoud Mann said. A in Yugoslavia the worst scenario is usually the one that if War is the worst Case scenario Djukanovic seems to agree. A considering or. Milosevic a natural tendency the fifth Balkan War cannot be ruled out a Djukanovic told reporters last month. A but it must be Clear to the International Community that there cannot be stability in the heart of the Balkans with the preservation of the dictatorship in the _ the associated press contributed to this Story. Email Jon Anderson at a daddy lion us police out in Force to Battle Drunken driving this Holiday Cindy Elmore stars and stripes pc. Wade Hoy of Tho 18th corps support battalion from Hanau Germany carries a stuffed lion from the passenger terminal at Camp Able sentry Macedonia where he and several other units caught a flight Home to Germany on monday Hoy bought the stuffed animal at the norwegian military Exchange in Macedonia to give to his new baby who is due to be bom in january. He was returning to Ger Many after being in Macedonia since late october. By Ron Jensen . Bureau Raf Mildenhall England a the local police have a message for anyone a including americans a who get a bit reckless with their Holiday reverie. A if you re driving on the roads of Suffolk and you be been drinking you re going to get caught a said Simon Stevens press officer for the Suffolk constabulary. About 3,000 people were seriously injured in Britain last year and about 500 killed in accidents caused by alcohol impaired constabulary for the Region that includes this base and Raf Lakenheath the largest concentrations of american military members in the nation is intent on continuing a downward trend in the number of people who drink too much and drive. In recent years Stevens pointed out the number of Drivers who Are administered the breath test has gone up but the percentage of those who fail the test has gone Down from 5 percent in 1996 to 2.3 percent last year. That drop in illegal Drivers is mirrored around the country he said. A the trend is in the right direction a he said during a Telephone interview tuesday. The number of Drunken driving deaths has also fallen from 790 in 1988 to an estimated 460 in 1998. To help drive Home the link Between the drop in illegal Drivers and fewer deaths to members of the american Community which numbers More than 20,000 at the two bases local police have distributed pamphlets this week to Drivers entering the bases. Those pamphlets As Well As the Suffolk constabulary annual Campaign against driving while intoxicated Point out that a persons driving ability might still be impaired the Day after heavy drinking. A it can take a considerable amount of time to get alcohol out of the system and it is impossible to Speed this process up a said inspector Bill Gra Ham of the Suffolk constabulary a traffic unit. Ifor example after a night of drinking that ends at Midnight the level of alcohol in the blood May still be Over the current Legal limit at 7 30 . There still might be enough alcohol in the blood to impair driving at noon. The Suffolk constabulary conducts an annual Campaign to discourage drinking and driving during the Holiday season. Stevens said this years Campaign will last longer and be More intense because of the a once in a lifetime Celebration of the millennium. No doubt he said that will attract More people to parties and perhaps to the roads and highways. A a we re not trying to spoil the party. That a not the Case a he said. Instead the police Are trying to prevent patties from ending in tragedies. A a there a always the danger a Stevens said a that people Are going to be tempted to drink and email Ron Jensen at _

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