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Source: BOSNEWS digest 364X, Wed, 9 Aug 1995

OVERESTIMATING SERB MILITARY MIGHT?

  • Back in 1993, J.P. Mackley wrote in the Washington Post that the West was vastly overrating Serb military capabilities as an excuse against intervention.
  • "People who argue that U.S. forces might find themselves locked in mortal combat with a formidable Yugoslav army must have missed the battle of Vukovar in 1991," he wrote. "During that action, 1,000 to 1,500 unorganized, ragtag Croatians, equipped with only infantry arms, held off 25,000 Yugoslav troops backed by heavy artillery, hundreds of tanks and MiGs for three months -- until their ammunition ran out....
  • "By almost any American standard, the Serbs aren't very good militarily," he notes. One example: Serbs bombed a 150-foot bridge on the Bosnian-Croat border every day for three months, but hit it only six times -- and even then couldn't make it unusable.
  • "The Serbs do their best fighting against unarmed women and the elderly," Mackley concluded.
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