As I was driving home from the office on February 4 I heard the announcement from Belgrade: the parliament formally voted to end the Republic of Yugoslavia and establish instead the state (or states) of Serbia and Montenegro. Tears came into my eyes—some part of me had also come to an end. Perhaps the end of an illusion.
Macedonia became an independent nation without firing a single shot. For a time it seemed that this small country of about 2 million might avoid the kind of interethnic warfare that marked the destruction of the former Yugoslavia, a federation that once included such now independent republics as Croatia and Slovenia.
Many pronouncements made by Serbs and by ethnic Albanians in Serbia, including Kosovo, are half-truths. Half-truths have also corrupted the pronouncements of many people, including the U.S. government and military and the media. And half-truths lead to total error. Thus, again in this latest Balkan conflict, truth is one of the first casualties of war.