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How do you judge President Clinton leading the United States, and Prime Minister Blair leading England, and the other leaders of the NATO countries leading their countries in a united effort to thwart Milosevic's "ethnic cleansing" and assorted other horrors, rape and murder, pillage and burning, and to allow the Kosovars to return?

Wasn't this acting on principle?

The principle is that the civilized world, if it wishes to continue to consider itself civilized, will not tolerate such Hitler-like behavior after the lesson of WWII.

I think it was a noble effort, done with noble intentions.

I'm sorry the war didn't go as smoothly and rapidly as one would have wished, but that's war.

I'm surprised that the strategy of bombing, without sending in ground troops blazing away at a great cost in NATO lives, worked.

I'm surprised that Russia didn't become an openly hostile state.

I'm not surprised that Russia pulled a fast one in sending in ground troops apparently hoping to designate for itself a territory to control forever, as in Germany after the war.

Or that Russia tried to augment their forces.

I am surprised that we succeeded in denying them airspace by which to fly in additional forces. Good for us and our new NATO allies Hungary and the other states that cooperated with NATO, and us, in this regard. That seems surprising to me too.

I think we acted on good principle.

Good for us, and good for our leaders, Bill Clinton and Tony Blair, especially.

Some principles Clinton's good for, and others he ain't. On balance, I like the ones he's for. When I want a saint, I know where to look.

-rs



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