Letter: Who's to blame?

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Your headline "This is the reality of war" (31 March) misses a crucial point. The 250,000 refugees and unknown number of people murdered are not realities of war, but of the vicious campaign of ethnic cleansing being pursued by the Milosevic regime, and Steve Jackson (letter, 31 March) is quite wrong to describe this campaign as a "Serb response to bombing".

Some years ago the French National Front leader Jean-Marie le Pen provoked outrage by describing the Holocaust as "a detail of the Second World War", the logic being that, if the allied powers had not made war on Germany, the Holocaust would not have happened.

Such has been the excuse of fascists time and again. The reality, of course, is that the Holocaust had nothing to do with the war and everything to do with the genocidal logic which lay at the heart of Nazi philosophy.

We should not allow Milosevic's apologists to get away with a similar lie. Ethnic cleansing began before the Nato bombardments and all the evidence suggests that it was intensifying. That is why Nato intervened.

The way in which it has been carried out - villages surrounded by tanks and artillery before the Serb "irregulars" move in - suggests a premeditated and planned campaign, not a spontaneous outburst of anger.

Nobody should be in any doubt: Nato is not responsible for the tragedy of Kosovo. Milosevic is.

Dr MARK PATTON

London SW16

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