November 27, 1994 – Chaos Is A Place Called Bihac – Capitol Hill Is A State Of Mind – Whitewater Is Neither
November 27, 1994 – The end of a chaotic week in 1994. News from the never-ending crisis in the Balkans had NATO airstrikes hitting Bosnian Serb targets in retaliation for attacks on NATO forces in the region. The target in question was the former UN declared safe-haven town of Bihac which Bosnian-Serb forces were intent on capturing. NATO called in airstrikes and some 30 aircraft representing the U.S., France, Britain and The Netherlands launched attacks on a Serb-held air base in Croatia. It was a base from which the Serbs had launched three attacks in as many days on the safe-haven city of Bihac. Bosnian Prime minister Haris Silajdžić praised the NATO attack, however it was later discovered the NATO attack was only of the runway of the air base, not the planes or the forces that flew those planes or the facilities that maintained them. NATO commanders felt convinced such a move would scare the Serbs, but some felt the UN should get off NATO’s back and let NATO take care of the situation as it knew how. And those who felt the scare tactic wouldn’t work were right, as Serb forces were back to shelling Bihac. And the chaos continued.
Meanwhile – Capitol Hill was the scene of many verbal fireworks displays as the Republicans were preparing to take control of Congress for the first time in 40 years. Leading the assault was Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina, slated to head the Foreign Relations Committee – he remarked that President Clinton was so unpopular among the military that he should bring a bodyguard if he wanted to visit the Tar Heel state. It brought an immediate reaction from White House Chief of Staff Leon Panetta and a back-track in the form of “I was just kidding” from Helms.
And the name Whitewater was back in the news again. Most people may have forgotten about it, but the newly emboldened Republicans in Congress didn’t. The investigation was now roaring along at top speed and Kenneth Starr was busy handing out a so-called Target letter to James McDougal, President Clinton’s former partner in the failed and now-defunct Whitewater Real Estate venture. Sources close to the Whitewater probe said that letter would inform McDougal that he could face criminal charges if he did not cooperate with the investigation.
And that’s just a small slice of what went on the week ending November 27, 1994 as presented by ABC Radio’s World News This Week.