Friday, 17 July 2009 01:03

The role of the media in fanning and then misrepresenting the Balkan conflict of the 90s has been one of the dirtiest. To paraphrase, the media became a handmaiden of power politics. Most of the media proved no more than pathetic transmission belts for the rankest sort of propaganda which originated in various government and PR offices.
Skeptical readers are invited to view the recently emerged evidence that some of CNN’s Gulf War “reporting” from Saudi Arabia actually emanated from a studio and was therefore fake:

We present Jared Israel’s incisive critique of the famous video of six young men being killed which was used as “smoking gun” evidence in the Milošević trial to corroborate the official version of the Srebrenica narrative.
Mr. Israel has his own website, “The Emperor’s New Clothes” [], where he comments on a wide variety of issues. We offer his thoughts on the Srebrenica video for his trenchant analysis of that particular issue, which stands or falls on its own merits. The reader is the ultimate judge.

Evidence that the Supposed Srebrenica Execution Video is a Lie

Part 1 -- What I'll prove and how I'll prove it.
by Jared Israel
Emperor’s Clothes
[24 June 2005; revised June 1, 2009]
Internet address:

This month quite a few people have written or called concerning Emperor’s Clothes articles refuting the official line on Bosnia.  They want to know if we have changed our stance based on a video shown June 1st, 2005 by prosecutor Jeffrey Nice during the Milosevic trial at The Hague.  This video was introduced virtually unchallenged at The Hague and was subsequently accepted by almost all media as proof that Serbian forces did indeed massacre thousands of Muslims after re-capturing the Bosnian town of Srebrenica in 1995.
One caller was shocked when I told him I thought the video’s execution scene was staged. How could I believe that an official UN body (the Hague Tribunal) would condone fraud?
I argued that, rather than assuming the video was credible because it was screened by a UN organization, we would do better to assess the Tribunal’s credibility by examining the video and evaluating how the Tribunal handled it. Anyway, even if the Tribunal were legitimate, the video would constitute no more than the alleged evidence of one party in a dispute. It would need to be evaluated for authenticity, just like any other supposed evidence. And, said I, if the caller examined the footage he would see why I believe it is fraudulent...
The caller answered that he had read all about the contents of the video in media reports, and anyway, he saw the thing on TV.
But the caller’s trust had been abused.
We will examine the media reports about the video, contrasting them to what is actually seen in the Hague footage. I believe you will agree that the media has put out propaganda, not news, and you will understand more about how the public has been led to believe the Srebrenica massacre story despite the contradictory and absurd nature of the supposed evidence
Contradictions and absurdities
Here are a few examples to whet your appetite.
In a story datelined June 2, (a day after The Hague screening) The Washington Post reported:
“The video begins with a Serb Orthodox priest blessing the camouflaged paramilitary troops in a boot camp in Bosnia...The video was shot by a member of the Scorpions.” [1]
But, as you will see when you study the footage [2], there is no way of knowing where this first sequence was filmed or the identity of the people who appear in it or of the person or persons who did the filming.  The Post neglects to mention this fact.
In the final sequence, it seems that six men get shot.  The Post describes them as “scared Muslims.” But nothing indicates the men’s religion or state of mind.  Indeed, they seem entirely unemotional.
The Los Angeles Times informs us that the video appeared, “As the 10th anniversary of the massacre of more than 7,000 Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica approaches...”  [3]
Meaning that before the video was shown, the existence of a huge massacre at Srebrenica was a proven fact.   
But later in the same article, the LA Times tells us that “The video has been greeted with a mixture of pain and relief by Bosnian Muslims, who see it as long-awaited proof of the [Srebrenica] atrocities.”
Meaning that, before the video was shown, the alleged massacre was not a proven fact. Indeed, this video is what supposedly provided “the long-awaited proof!”
The pretzel-like character of this logic recalls Walter Scott’s wise warning, “Oh what a tangled web we weave, When first we practise to deceive!”
But that’s not all. There is nothing in the Hague footage suggesting it was filmed in or near Srebrenica or that it was filmed in July of 1995, when, we are told, the alleged massacre took place. It could have been filmed in the mountains of Iowa.  There are no mountains in Iowa?  No problem; edit them in. You can do anything with film footage. And as for the time period when the supposed execution footage was filmed, there is nothing in it that answers that question. It could have been filmed whenever.  
So we have a video, which is hyped as an example of what happened during a massacre, which we are told definitely occurred, but whose existence was only proven by the appearance of this video, which however contains no indication of when or where it was filmed. Got it?
On June 3rd, 2005 CNN broadcast what they claimed was The Hague footage. (Actually, it had been doctored, which is a case of gilding a lily...) CNN began their broadcast with a written warning, while a voice cautioned, “This report contains graphic content and viewer discretion is advised.” Reuters called the video “gruesome.” Agence France Presse called it “sickening.”
But as you can see [see footnote 2], if the execution sequence were in fact believable, it would be far less gruesome than what we routinely watch on TV news. (For example, there is no blood; no screaming; no evidence that the alleged victims are actually hurt when shot with powerful automatic rifles at close range.) In any case, the execution footage is not believable. It is obviously staged, defying normal logic as well as the laws of physics and biology.
We will see that some news reports supposedly describing the video mention incidents that are not portrayed in the Hague footage!  In other words, the media has made stuff up.
The media’s so-called “information” about when and where the video footage was filmed and the identities of people we see in it, comes from a semi-coherent running commentary delivered by Prosecutor Jeffrey Nice while the footage was being shown at The Hague. Mr. Nice’s comments could have legal standing only if he were an eyewitness to what is supposedly depicted in the video. But he is not. He is a prosecutor in the super-controversial Milosevic trial, and he is trying in that trial to prove the very things that he casually asserts during his commentary on the video, which however provides no evidence to support his assertions. So, more pretzel logic.
We will examine the manner in which Mr. Nice introduced the video, during his cross examination of a defense witness on an issue totally unrelated to the content of the video.
I think you will see that the facts concerning this video and how it was introduced during the Milosevic proceedings support my charge that The Hague Tribunal is not a court at all. Rather it is part of a machine which has targeted the Serbs because, in the words, of former German foreign minister Klaus Kinkel, “Serbia must be forced to its knees!” [4]
I think after studying this material, you will agree that The Hague has, as part of its raison raison d’être, the task of providing the media with anti-Serb propaganda, enhanced with the stamp of UN credibility. 
-- Continued in Part 2 at --
[1] "Serbs Are Stunned by Video of Srebrenica," The Washington Post, June 3, 2005, Friday, Final Edition, A Section; Page A15, 461 words, by Beti Bilandzic, Reuters, Belgrade, June 2
[2] The footage shown June 1st, 2005 by prosecutor Jeffrey Nice during the Milosevic trial at The Hague can be seen at
This video of the June 1st court session lasts more than five hours. The section in which prosecutor Nice presents clips allegedly showing Bosnian Serbs committing crimes against Bosnian Muslims starts at 2:34:12. To see the video you will need Real Player. If you don’t have it, you can get it for free at

The transcript of the court session can be read at
or on Emperor's Clothes at

[3] "Video Alters Serbs’ View of Bosnian War; A newly disclosed 1995 tape showing a Serbian unit executing Muslim prisoners has forced many to acknowledge atrocities for first time," Los Angeles Times, June 13, 2005 Monday, Home Edition, Main News; Foreign Desk; Part A; Pg. 6, 1970 words, by Alissa J. Rubin, Times Staff Writer, Tuzla, Bosnia-Herzegovina

[4] The Western media often accuses the Serbs of mass paranoia. Studying history is an excellent antidote to this nonsense.  In 1992, the London Guardian, which at that time still sometimes reported some of the truth about Yugoslavia, published an article that discussed the lust of German leaders to get at the Serbs:
“Although [foreign minister Klaus] Kinkel is not ready to go as far as some senior Christian Democrats in urging a military strike against Serbia, he shares their sense of helpless rage at the inability of the EC to undertake concrete measures to ‘force Serbia to its knees’”.

-- "Germany Seeks To Assert Itself," by David Gow, Manchester Guardian Weekly; August 2, 1992; Section: Pg. 9; Length: 1052 Words.
In today’s world an effort is sometimes made to soften the way things sound. During World War I less care was taken. The following postcard was circulated on the Austro-Hungarian side:

“Serbia must die!”

The German text reads, “Serbia must die!” You may find it hard to believe, but this was the most popular slogan on the German, Austrian, Hungarian side during World War I. And when they said “die” they meant “die”; the Serbs were subjected to horrific atrocities.
Imagine Kinkel’s “helpless rage” that in the 1990s he was forced to maintain appearances by substituting the relatively anemic, “Serbia must be forced to its knees!”

Part 2 -- The Srebrenica “Execution” Video: Mission Impossible
On June 1st, 2005 Hague Tribunal prosecutor Jeffrey Nice showed some now-famous video footage of a supposed execution. Amazingly, Prosecutor Nice was permitted to do this causally, in the middle of cross-examining a witness in the Milosevic trial. Let us take a critical look at what the video footage allegedly proves, according to The Hague prosecution and the media.
According to prosecutor Nice, the footage was shot by a Serbian paramilitary during the execution of six Muslims. The Hague Tribunal and the media have claimed for years that the Bosnian Serb army massacred thousands of Muslim prisoners of war after they captured the Bosnian town of Srebrenica in July 1995. The video, they say, is the long sought smoking gun proving the Srebrenica massacre happened and showing how it was done.
If this video footage, and particularly the two scenes depicting a supposed execution, were legitimate, this might constitute smoking gun evidence for a massacre. I say might because the Tribunal and their supporters, i.e., most media, would still need to prove the claim they made, that the supposed victims in the video comprise one of many batches of Muslims brought to the same place and murdered.
And what if the video is fraudulent? The Hague Tribunal, pro-NATO governments (including in Serbia) and the mass media have presented the video as legitimate. If we find that they are lying -- grotesquely lying -- then shouldn’t we assume that previous assertions about a supposed Srebrenica massacre, put forth with the same certainty, by mostly the same people, are also fraudulent? That the video is the latest attempt to frame the Serbian people on a fraudulent charge of mass murder?
One might ask, why would powerful institutions attempt such a frame-up? Answer: because the Srebrenica story has had a huge effect on world politics. Srebrenica depicts Muslims as supposed victims of supposedly racist Serbian Orthodox Christians, creating the impression that Muslim violence constitutes revenge. The Srebrenica story has weakened opposition to political Islam around the world. Political Islam, once widely perceived as the most intolerant and repressive force on earth, is now widely perceived as an understandable response to repression and intolerance.
One might call this the “Srebrenica effect,” and it is, I believe, an important component of the Western establishment’s political strategy for controlling political thinking in the post-cold war world. 
We must consider: is the video real or a hoax? Using direct evidence, including prosecutor Jeffrey Nice’s narration while he showed the video, the coverage in the mass media, and the actual footage, I will prove the charge that the Srebrenica video is a sloppy fabrication.
The Hague spins a tale
The footage was never introduced in evidence at the Milosevic trial. Rather, prosecutor Nice casually announced:
“I’m going to show you some extracts from a video. The video lasts about two hours but it will only be a few minutes of it that we will show in order to give its context. It comes in several clips.” [My emphasis] [1]
The impression created by the mass media, that prosecutor Nice showed a piece of raw video, exactly as it was (supposedly) filmed by an eyewitness to murder, is manifestly false. Rather, he showed a series of short clips or sequences, filmed in different times and places.  According to Nice, the clips were selected from two hours shot over a period of weeks. So, by his own admission, the film was edited.
As you will see when you watch the Hague footage [2], it is impossible to tell from the clips when or where they were shot or the identity of the people involved.  Instead, prosecutor Nice provides a running narration telling us what we are supposed to see: the movements of people who are supposedly members of a paramilitary group he calls the Skorpions. He tells us that the film clips are in chronological order; he tells us that they span a period of weeks leading up to and shortly after the re-taking of Srebrenica by the Bosnian Serbs; he tells us that the final clips show the execution of six Muslim men, captured in Srebrenica. The effect of this is that we see the video through the filter of what Nice tells us, but in fact we have no way of knowing if he is telling us the truth about anything, including the authenticity of the footage.
What we do know is that prosecutor Nice was not personally a witness to the events that he tells us are captured in the footage. So even if he is not purposely lying, how can he honestly tell us that he knows the film is authentic? Of course, he cannot. This apart from the question of whether some or all of the clips have been staged, or whether illusions have been created through film editing, either old fashioned or digital.
The most important part of the footage is the last two scenes, comprising the supposed execution. Here is what prosecutor Nice tells us as he begins to play those scenes.  My comments are in brackets.
[Excerpt from transcript of Milosevic trial, 1 June 2005, starts here.]

[This section starts at 2:38:34 of the court session video (see footnote 2)]
Mr. Nice: This is at -- this is at Trnovo [TURN-uh-vo] at the command post of the Skorpions.
[Video footage is played.]
Mr. Nice: This is on the front at Treskavica [TRES-ka-vitza], or was.
[More video footage is played. The picture is quite bad here. Mr. Nice claims it shows some men in the back of a truck.]
Mr. Nice:  Now, this -- pause there.
[The video is paused.]
Mr. Nice: This video, which is potentially distressing viewing and I’m only going to play very small parts of it, reveals, Mr. Stevanovic, if the evidence is in due course admitted, and that’s why I want your assistance, reveals that men were brought from Srebrenica in batches to this group of Skorpions to be executed and they were executed, and what you see here is a lorry load of six young men. [Video is played] This is the same truck with the men in the back. [3]
[Excerpt from transcript of Milosevic trial, 1 June 2005, ends here]
Notice that Prosecutor Nice says, “men were brought from Srebrenica in batches to this group of Skorpions [in the Treskavica mountains near Trnovo] to be executed.”
The media endorsed prosecutor Nice’s unsubstantiated claims without an ounce of critical analysis. The Serbs definitely massacred thousands; the video definitely shows how it was done. 
Here’s The New York Times:
“Almost 10 years after the massacre of more than 7,000 Muslim men and boys by Serbian security forces in Srebrenica, a video has surfaced that presents graphic details of their fate. ”
“[The video footage,] shot by a member of the group, shows six emaciated men being removed from a canvas covered military truck driven from Srebrenica to Treskavica, a mountain in Serbian-held territory south of Sarajevo.” [4]
Aside from the fact that nobody in the video looks particularly thin, let alone emaciated, notice that for the Times, Srebrenica is the massacre, not the alleged massacre; the video presents rather than allegedly presents real details. The video surfaced, suggesting that it is authentic rather than fabricated. And how does the Times know who did the filming or whether the supposed victims, men dressed in ordinary civilian clothing, are Muslims?  The Times ‘knows’ because Hague prosecutor Nice said so; the prosecution’s unsupported comments are automatically true. The Times even ‘knows’ that before we see the truck with six men in the back, it was driven from Srebrenica to the Treskavica Mountain. 
Aside from the off-the-charts bias of such coverage, which is typical of the mass media when it covers Yugoslavia, it is remarkable that not one write-up -- not even in supposed alternative sources that have more-or-less raised doubts about the video -- has pointed out that the claim that the Serbs killed thousands of Muslims, in the manner told to us by prosecutor Nice, is manifestly crazy.
Has nobody any shame?
Location, location, location!
It is not easy to kill 7000-8000 prisoners of war. It is harder still to do so in a way that keeps the crime secret. Since the Bosnian Serbs have always denied a massacre took place, we know that, even if we were to posit, for the sake of argument, that they were guilty, they certainly did not want it known.
What advice might we give would-be war criminals who wish to murder thousands of prisoners of war and keep it secret?
Well, first they must do the job as quickly as possible. The longer it takes, the greater the risk of discovery.
Second, they should do it as close to where the prisoners were captured as possible. The further they transport the victims, the more time it will take, the greater the logistical problems, and the more likely they will be exposed, due to unforeseen events.
And third, they should murder the victims in territory they control, limiting possibilities of observation and interference.
The town of Srebrenica was famously an “enclave,” controlled by Muslim extremist forces but located deep in Serb-controlled Eastern Bosnia. The map below shows that Sarajevo is 80 kilometers southwest of Srebrenica. It doesn’t show Treskavica Mountain, but, as the crow flies, Treskavica is 20 to 40 kilometers south of Sarajevo, depending where you want to go on the mountain.


Map which colors the Bosnian Serb Republic (Republika Srpska) yellow and areas controlled by the Muslim-Croat Federation green, making it clear that Srebrenica is deep inside Republika Srpska

Below I have linked to a more detailed map, which colors the Bosnian Serb Republic (Republika Srpska) yellow and areas controlled by the Muslim-Croat Federation green, making it clear that Srebrenica is deep inside Republika Srpska:

Source: Bosnia and Herzegovina (Political) CIA 1997, Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection, University of Texas Libraries.

So Treskavica Mountain is 100 to 120 kilometers south of Srebrenica, as the crow flies. In the summer of 1995, heavily loaded trucks would have to make the trip on treacherous mountain roads worsened by neglect and bombing. A Yugoslav writer familiar with the area told me:
“There would be only one reasonable road from Srebrenica to Treskavica, and it would be a circuitous route of about 160 km. Even then the road would be dangerous. Trucks would have to drive slowly, 40 kilometers per hour, or less.”
So the trip would last at least four hours, each way.
Prosecutor Nice says that Treskavica Mountain was at that time part of the military front. That is true. 
So, if we were to believe The Hague Tribunal, the Bosnian Serbs took the already formidable task of killing and disposing of thousands of men and found a way to make it worse, trucking their victims in small groups, over treacherous roads, from an area the Serbs controlled to the front, which they did not.
Doing the deed
Murder is a practical affair, so let us be practical. We have to kill 8000 people. We have made the curious decision to truck the victims across war-torn Bosnia, 8 hours round trip. We will need time to load and unload, to refuel, time for maintenance, time for drivers and guards to eat, and waiting time, while the ‘cargos’ are ‘processed,’ so we must add at least two hours more, making ten hours per round trip.
Let us requisition 25 trucks. For the Bosnian Serb army, stretched thin over a 2,000 mile long front, that’s a lot of trucks, but OK.
Let’s dump ten victims in back of each truck instead of six, as suggested by Mr. Nice, the prosecutor at the Milosevic trial. In order to transport 8000 men, each truck would need to complete 32 round trips. At ten hours per trip, that means 320 hours of driving per truck, if things go smoothly.
But would they go smoothly? Srebrenica was seized by the Bosnian Serb army on the 11th of July. What kind of “front” would our caravans of trucks find after driving from Srebrenica south to Treskavica Mountain?
Well, on the 10th of July, 1995 the day before the Serbs took Srebrenica, according to Radio Bosnia-Herzegovina: 
“The information centre of the Bosnia-Herzegovina 4th Corps (based in Mostar) reported that ‘the newly achieved lines of the 4th Corps on Mt Treskavica have been pounded by enemy heavy artillery. They [i.e., the Bosnian Serb army] have also attempted several infantry attacks aimed at recapturing lost territory.” [5]
On the 13th, the same Muslim radio station reported:
“On the Treskavica and Trnovo fronts, the aggressor attacked all the lines of our defence positions with artillery and all types of infantry weapons. On these fronts, the artillery of the Army of the Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina (successfully) neutralized the enemy’ s firing positions...” [6]
On the 14th, the Serbian side reported:
[Report from Yugoslav Telegraph Service news agency starts here]
Muslim forces Friday again attacked Bosnian Serb positions along the entire line of confrontation on Mount Treskavica south of Sarajevo, Bosnian Serb army sources said...

Muslim units are continuing to open mortar fire on all heights in the area of Treskavica where they had lost positions in heavy fighting in the past few days and are attempting an infantry break-through, the local Bosnian Serb army command said. [7]
[Report from Yugoslav Telegraph Service news agency ends here]
On the 15th and 16th, the Serbs reported continued fighting on Mt. Treskavica. On 21 July, The Washington Post and other papers reported that:
“Since May, government forces evidently have captured 150 to 200 square kilometers of Serb-held territory in the Treskavica Mountains south of Olovo, as well as other territory to the northeast and southeast of Tuzla.” [8]
So according to The Washington Post, since May (actually, it was since April) the Serbs had bitterly fought their enemies over every bit of real estate on Treskavica Mountain, and the fighting continued after the Serbs took Srebrenica on 11 July. Indeed, as late as 5 August, Ratko Mladic, commander of the Bosnian Serb army, praised a Bosnian Serb brigade as follows:
“This brigade on 1st August this year, in a powerful thrust, broke through Muslim lines on Treskavica and liberated the strategic peaks of Hum, Cardak and Kragujevac, creating conditions for the further advance of Serb forces.” [9]
And days later, Guardian writer Ed Vulliamy was reporting that, in this area, “the battle lines still move to and fro.” [10]
How many times would one of our trucks drive all the way to Treskavica mountain only to be forced to turn back due to nearby fighting?  How many trucks would be blasted by enemy or friendly fire? How many drivers or guards would be shot by snipers? How many times would the execution site have to be moved, as enemy forces overran it? or seized a nearby peak? or threatened to seize it? or began an artillery barrage?  How long would it take to move the 8000 victims, with all the inevitable delays and losses we would incur?  32 days?  60?  90? How many trucks would we lose? 5? 25? 100? Are we talking about 32 trips by 25 trucks or 50 trips by a hundred trucks, or a hundred trips per truck with trucks constantly having to turn back or risk being destroyed? How many troops would we need to escort our trucks and protect the execution site from enemy attacks? 
It appears that this task assigned to us by prosecutor Nice may become the major preoccupation of the Bosnian Serb Army.
And remember, nobody must find out what we are doing; but how shall we avoid it?  Isn’t it almost inevitable, with our trucks traveling a never-changing, highly predictable route into an ever-changing military front, that the enemy will notice, and our trucks will be seized?  And that we shall see our drivers and the intended victims on the six o’clock news?
The US military says it has spy satellites photographing every square inch of planet earth. In 1995, NATO had UAVs and U2s as well, remote-controlled spy planes equipped with the latest technology, buzzing over Republika Srpska, filming every move made by Bosnian Serb forces.  But, until prosecutor Nice showed his footage ten years after the fall of Srebrenica, nobody is supposed to have noticed a thing. Could their satellites, U2s and UAVs have failed to spot our sizable and continuous convoy of trucks, at a time when they claim their  attention was focused on the area around Srebrenica?
With constant delays and inevitable losses due to trying to murder 8000 unwilling individuals by first trucking them 160 km into a shooting war, our criminal enterprise might well drag on into September.  But at the end of August, NATO began all-out bombing attacks on Republika Srpska, blowing up anything that moved, including chickens. Somehow, NATO planes must not notice and destroy our caravan of trucks, forever creeping along the same route between Srebrenica and Treskavica Mountain.  Neither rain nor treacherous road nor carpet bomb may stop us! The Mohammedans must die in Treskavica!
I submit to you that this is preposterous.
And by the way, I did not mention the bodies. As you shall see when you look at The Hague Tribunal footage, the six supposed Muslim prisoners are marched up a mountainside (or so it appears) and then, in Mr. Nice’s video production, are supposedly shot.  [See footnote 2]

Until now, the media and The Hague Tribunal have claimed that the supposed Srebrenica massacre victims were buried in graves in Eastern Bosnia, not 100-120 kilometers to the south, in Treskavica Mountain. That version of the massacre story was sold to the public starting 10  August 1995, when the US government told the UN it had satellite pictures of freshly turned earth in a soccer field, supposedly constituting proof of the existence of a huge Srebrenica mass grave located six miles north of Srebrenica. (The US has never shown those pictures to the public...) [11]
A problem with killing people is that afterwards they can’t walk. Will The Hague prosecution now tell us that, after executing each batch of Muslims, the Skorpions, while dodging enemy artillery shells, must drag the bodies back down the mountain and hoist them into the trucks, following which the drivers must drive them a hundred-plus kilometers for burial, thus graciously enabling the US to photograph mass graves north of Srebrenica, though they never do photograph any of the trucks or executions?
Or do NATO and The Hague Tribunal (which, according to NATO, might as well be NATO [12] ) wish to rewrite their previous propaganda story, quietly moving the mass graves south to Treskavica? 
I have a theory that may explain why prosecutor Nice was told to spin this crazy horror story about shipping truckloads of Muslims to Treskavica Mountain. I’ve been studying battle reports. From April to July 1995, the reports indicate that thousands of fighters -- especially Muslims -- were killed in and around Treskavica Mountain. After battles it is standard practice to bury the dead, sometimes in mass graves, in order to clean up the battle field.  So there are many graves, big and small, all over the Treskavica area.  In ten years time, NATO and the Hague have been unable to produce and identity the bodies of anywhere near the 8000 Muslims they claim died in Srebrenica. Those bodies they have produced are easily explained by the fact that a)  Muslim commander Nasir Oric is on record boasting of all the Serbian civilians he butchered in villages around Srebrenica and b) a couple of thousand Muslim troops died trying to fight their way through Serbian lines after Srebrenica fell. Much of this fighting took place in villages previously turned into ghost towns by Nasir Oric. [13]
Perhaps NATO and The Hague wish to move their execution story south to Treskavica so that, in time for the predicted arrest of Bosnian Serb commander Ratko Mladic, and the 10th anniversary of the fall of Srebrenica, they will have the great luck to ‘discover’ the long promised but never produced mass graves.
Let us take a further look at how the media dealt with prosecutor Nice's claims, and then at the supposed execution footage. As to which is more absurd, prosecutor Nice’s narration about executions on Treskavica Mountain, or how media's covered his narration, or the video footage itself, I will let you decide.
For me, it is too close to call.
-- Continued in Part 3 at --
[1] This excerpt from the June 1st, 2005 Milosevic proceedings is posted with the rest of that day’s transcript at
[2] The video of the June 1, 2005 court session of the Milosevic trial at The Hague can be seen at
To watch it, you’ll need RealPlayer. If you don’t have it, you can get it for free at
The video lasts more than five hours. The section in which prosecutor Jeffrey Nice starts showing clips from a video supposedly showing Serbian paramilitary forces executing Muslim prisoners starts at 2:34:12.

[3] This excerpt from the June 1st, 2005 Milosevic proceedings is posted with the rest of that day’s transcript at
[4] "Video of Serbs in Srebrenica Massacre Leads to Arrests," The New York Times, June 3, 2005 Friday, Late Edition -- Final, Section A; Column 1; Foreign Desk; Pg. 3, 997 words, by Nicholas Wood; Ivana Sekularac contributed reporting from Belgrade, Serbia, for this article, Ljubljana, Slovenia, June 2.
[5] "Bosnian Radio and Croatian Reports; Bosnian Serbs use 'chemical agents' on Mt Treskavica front," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, July 12, 1995, Wednesday, Part 2 Central Europe and the Balkans; Former Yugoslavia; Bosnia-Hercegovina; EE/2353/C, 215 words; Source: Radio Bosnia-Hercegovina, Sarajevo, in Serbo-Croat 1700 gmt 10 Jul 95; Bosnian radio (Sarajevo) at 1700 gmt on 10th July carries in its regular 40-minute newscast reports on fighting in the Gorazde, Bihac and Treskavica regions.
[6] "Sarajevo Radio Reports; Bosnian artillery neutralizes Serb positions near Sarajevo," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, July 15, 1995, Saturday, Part 2 Central Europe and the Balkans; Former Yugoslavia; Bosnia-Hercegovina; EE/2356/C, 303 words, Source: Radio Bosnia-Hercegovina, Sarajevo, in Serbo-Croat 1300 gmt 13 Jul 95
[7] "Serb Reports; Bosnian Muslims renew attacks on Mt Treskavica," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, July 17, 1995, Monday, Part 2 Central Europe and the Balkans; Former Yugoslavia; Bosnia-Hercegovina; EE/2357/C, 292 words, Source: Yugoslav Telegraph Service news agency, Belgrade, in English 1933 gmt 14 Jul 95

[8] For the 15th:
"Serb Reports; Serb civilians killed in Sarajevo by Bosnian Muslim snipers," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, July 17, 1995, Monday, Part 2 Central Europe and the Balkans; Former Yugoslavia; Bosnia-Hercegovina; EE/2357/C, 314 words, Source: Yugoslav Telegraph Service news agency, Belgrade, in English 1640 gmt 15 Jul 95
For the 16th:
"Fighting Elsewhere; Serbs report attack from Gorazde 'safe area'," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, July 18, 1995, Tuesday, Part 2 Central Europe and the Balkans; Former Yugoslavia; Bosnia-Hercegovina; EE/2358/C, 194 words, Source: Yugoslav Telegraph Service news agency, Belgrade, in English 1526 gmt 16 Jul 95
The Washington Post:
"Bosnian Forces Capturing Territory From Serbs, Intelligence Indicates," The Washington Post, July 21, 1995, Friday, Final Edition, A Section; Pg. A26, 813 words, by R. Jeffrey Smith, Washington Post Staff Writer

[9] "Serb Reports; Mladic praises unit for successes on Mt Treskavica," BBC Summary of World Broadcasts, August 7, 1995, Monday, Part 2 Central Europe and the Balkans; Former Yugoslavia; Bosnia-Hercegovina; EE/2375/C, 157 words, Source: Bosnian Serb news agency SRNA in Serbo-Croat 0912 gmt 5 Aug 95
[10] "Wild Animals of a MountainWar; Ed Vulliamy meets men fighting their way homewards amid the forests and peaks of Bosnia’s interior," The Guardian (London), August 14, 1995, The Guardian Foreign PageS; Pg. 9, 2187 words, by Ed Vulliamy
[11] "Serbs buried 2,000 in mass graves, U.S. says Satellite photos back claim at U.N.," The Toronto Star, August 11, 1995, Friday, Metro Edition, News; Pg. A1, 679 words, by Stephen Handelman Toronto Star, United Nations
[12] At a NATO press conference, former spokesperson Jamie Shea explained to a reporter that NATO controlled The Hague Tribunal.  At another press conference, the former chief prosecutor of the Tribunal, Louise Arbour, described NATO countries as the Tribunal’s “partners” and its sources of information. For excerpts from both press conferences, with links to the full texts, see “The Hague Tribunal: UN Court or Weapon of NATO?” at
[13] Muslim commander Nasir Oric boasted of his war crimes in newspaper interviews. See for example the Toronto Star’s “Fearsome Muslim warlord eludes Bosnian Serb forces,” archived at
For more articles on Yugoslavia, please go to
The Srebrenica “Execution” Video, Part 3: The Media Moves Mountains
For Part 1, go to
For Part 2, go to
Part 3 internet address:
I have said I will prove that the so-called Srebrenica execution video, shown a month ago at the Hague, is a fraud, and that media coverage of this footage suggests a propaganda campaign aimed at demonizing the Serbian people.
In Part 2 of this series, “The Srebrenica ‘Execution’ Video: Mission Impossible”[1], we considered Prosecutor Jeffrey Nice’s claim that the video shows how “…men were brought from Srebrenica in batches to this group of Skorpions [on Treskavica Mountain] to be executed and they were executed….” [2]
As we saw, trucking  prisoners from Srebrenica to Treskavica Mountain would have meant driving over treacherous mountain roads for 10 hours (320 kilometers round trip) into the worst fighting in Bosnia, complete with heavy artillery duels. A bit like Normandy on D-Day.
If the media had done their job, pointing out that, as a secret execution site, Treskavica Mountain was absurd, they would have made prosecutor Nice a laughing stock. But they didn’t. They did the opposite.
Consider MSNBC.
MSNBC begins their story with two still shots from the video footage. Beneath the photo on the left is the caption:
“This image taken from a video purportedly shows the shadow of a Serbian soldier cast over bound Bosnian Muslim civilian prisoners taken from Srebrenica to Mount Treskavica, near the wartime Bosnian Serb capital of Pale, in 1995, where they were killed.” [3]
Although this caption does use the word, “purportedly,” it nevertheless communicates that the video is authentic, an impression strengthened by the main headline:
“Bosnia agonizes over release of massacre video. 1995 shooting deaths of Muslims from Srebrenica shown on TV.”
MSNBC does not refer to the alleged massacre video or supposed deaths of people whom prosecutor Jeffrey Nice claims were Muslims captured in Srebrenica. Instead, everything is definite.
Beneath the photo on the right we read:
“Bosnian television aired a video of a 1995 massacre committed by Serbs in Srebrenica, Bosnia-Herzegovina. But will the people responsible for the atrocity be punished?”
So much for “purportedly”; the video is now proof positive. A splendid precedent. A prosecutor need only show a video -- he doesn’t have to enter it in evidence, or allow it to be examined by an independent expert, indeed he can be a thousand miles away -- and the only question is, will the people “responsible for the atrocity” be punished?
The caption for the photo on the left states that the video footage was shot on Treskavica Mountain. The caption for the photo on the right states that it was shot in Srebrenica. Thus Microsoft has solved prosecutor Nice’s 160 kilometer dilemma by moving the Mountain to Srebrenica, where it will find the Mohammedans.
The New York Times re-writes... The New York Times
The New York Times also mentions Treskavica Mountain. Unlike MSNBC, the Times does not lie (or for that matter tell the truth) about Treskavica’s location; however, it does describe Treskavica as “Serbian-held territory”:
“The video, shot by a member of the group, shows six emaciated men being removed from a canvas covered military truck driven from Srebrenica to Treskavica, a mountain in Serbian-held territory south of Sarajevo.” [4]
As I mentioned earlier, and as you will see when you view the video footage [see footnote 2], the men don’t look emaciated. But it’s a nice effect, and anyway, why quibble since the sentence also invents the notion that at the time the Serbs re-took Srebrenica, Treskavica was “Serbian-held territory.” 
“Serbian-held” gives readers the useful impression that Treskavica was secure, i.e., suitable for carrying out secret executions. In fact, in the summer of 1995, Treskavica Mountain was not Serbian-held. As noted earlier, Muslim extremist armies were fighting Bosnian Serb troops for control of the Mountain, with daily battles, complete with artillery duels. This was reported at the time by various media sources, including... The New York Times. For example, on June 15th, 1995, about three weeks before the Serbs recaptured Srebrenica, the Times reported:
“This force of about 130,000 [Muslim] soldiers has more than held its own against the [Bosnian] Serbs over the past year. It has taken strategic high ground, most recently Treskavica Mountain south of Sarajevo, and resisted against all odds in the isolated western enclave of Bihac.” [My emphasis] [5]
In case The New York Times doesn’t like reading The New York Times, there’s always The Washington Post, which, five weeks later, reported that, according to US intelligence:
“Since May, government [i.e., Muslim extremist] forces evidently have captured 150 to 200 square kilometers of Serb-held territory in the Treskavica Mountains…” [My emphasis] [6]

Reuters keeps it simple
The Reuters dispatch, which was widely reprinted by various newspapers, never mentions Treskavica Mountain, but nevertheless mis-locates the supposed execution site:
“A sickening video of Serb paramilitary soldiers in the act of murdering six Bosnian Muslim youths near Srebrenica in 1995 sobered Serbia on Thursday….” [My emphasis] [7]
And later in the same article:
“The graphic film was shot near the town whose name now recalls the worst massacre in Europe since World War Two…[and so on].”  [My emphasis] 
As with MSNBC, Treskavica, where according to Nice the video footage was shot, has been moved to a convenient location. And it is done with admirable simplicity: “near.”
The meaning of “near” of course depends on context; from the viewpoint of astrophysics, the earth is near the moon.  But from the viewpoint of people supposedly trying to execute large numbers of prisoners of war and not get caught, a location that requires driving trucks 160 km on treacherous mountain roads into the worst fighting in Bosnia while being spied on by the combined armed forces of Europe and North America does not qualify as “near.”
Perhaps you are thinking that perhaps all this misinformation results from lazy reporting?  If so, consider that these three leading media sources do not parrot some common source, which might indicate mental laziness. Rather, the Times misdescribes Treskavica Mountain; Reuters ignores it but puts the video “near” Srebrenica; and MSNBC moves all of 20 kilometer-wide Treskavica Mountain into Srebrenica. Thus instead of doing their proper job, which is to investigate Nice’s claims, these media giants obscure the absurdity of those claims, each in its own way: a creativity of misinformation.
Could this result from ignorance?  I don’t think so. The Times article was written by Nicholas Wood. As archived in the Lexis-Nexis media search engine, his byline appears on over 200 stories related to Bosnia. They were published by The New York Times, the London Times, The Guardian and other leading newspapers. His Bosnia reporting goes back to 1992.  Surely he knows that in 1995 Treskavica was the last place the Serbs would try to carry out secret executions.
The Reuters story was by Beti Bilandzic. Her byline appears in 25 newspaper stories about Yugoslavia, going back to 1996. This doesn’t include her Reuters dispatches, which are not archived on Lexis-Nexis, and I gave up trying to count.  Surely she knows that Treskavica Mountain is not “near” Srebrenica.
As for MSNBC, their internet story is an AP dispatch, whose author isn't mentioned by name, but I imagine the combined research capabilities of Associated Press, Microsoft and NBC are equal to those of Emperor’s Clothes.
In one of  Rex Stout’s excellent detective novels, his Montenegrin-born sleuth, Nero Wolfe, says that, in a world that operates mostly at random, coincidences are to be expected, but each should be viewed skeptically. That three media giants with superb research facilities could all produce articles that obscure, by means of differing misinformation, the absurdity of prosecutor Nice’s allegations, and that this could be accidental, is too much coincidence for me. Especially since this multiple coincidence required that the authors forget what they know. 
A more reasonable explanation is that prosecutor Nice’s story was too obviously absurd and so, in the interest of established policy, namely demonizing the Bosnian Serbs, every newspaper and TV news program hid The Hague’s absurdity. The media could reasonably expect to get away with this fraud because they know people are very busy and therefore will not a) find and watch the actual Hague video footage on the internet and b) study the geography of Bosnia and c) check out media reports concerning Treskavica from 1995. 
Jared Israel
Editor, Emperor’s Clothes
[1] See, “The Srebrenica ‘Execution’ Video: Mission Impossible” at
[2] This excerpt from the June 1st, 2005 Milosevic proceedings is posted with the rest of that day’s transcript at

The video of the June 1, 2005 court session of the Milosevic trial at The Hague can be seen at
To watch it, you’ll need RealPlayer. If you don’t have it, you can get it for free at
The video lasts more than five hours. The section in which prosecutor Jeffrey Nice starts showing clips from a video supposedly showing Serbian paramilitary forces executing Muslim prisoners starts at 2:34:12.

[3] "Bosnia agonizes over release of massacre video.
1995 shooting deaths of Muslims from Srebrenica shown on TV,"  World news --, AP Associated Press, updated 7:47 p.m. ET June 3, 2005, at
If this page is taken down, we have it archived at
[4]  "Video of Serbs in Srebrenica Massacre Leads to Arrests," The New York Times, June 3, 2005 Friday, Late Edition -- Final, Section A; Column 1; Foreign Desk; Pg. 3, 997 words, by Nicholas Wood; Ivana Sekularac contributed reporting from Belgrade, Serbia, for this article; Ljubljana, Slovenia, June 2

[5] "A Ragtag Bosnian Army Becomes a Credible Force," The New York Times, June 15, 1995, Thursday, Late Edition - Final, Section A; Page 1; Column 1; Foreign Desk , 982 words, By Roger Cohen, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, June 14
[6] "Bosnian Forces Capturing Territory From Serbs, Intelligence Indicates," The Washington Post, July 21, 1995, Friday, Final Edition, A SECTION; Pg. A26, 813 words, R. Jeffrey Smith, Washington Post Staff Writer

[7] Posted by Muslim News; “Srebrenica video sobers Serbia, brings arrests”; June 3, 2005; By Beti Bilandzic; Belgrade (Reuters);
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