INTO BATTLE

THE MUSLIMS LAUNCH AN OFFENSIVE THAT MAY LEAD TO BESIEGED SARAJEVO, OR BACK TO THE NEGOTIATING TABLE

Despite a couple of successful campaigns, the army of the Muslim-led Bosnian government always seemed to be the beleaguered combatant, retreating from Serb onslaughts, unable to recover the initiative. Thus, when the government ordered up to 15,000 of its troops to mass north and west of its besieged capital of Sarajevo, few expected anything dramatic-even after a nationwide state of alert was imposed and the populace was warned that something had to be done "to prevent an obvious catastrophe."

And then the Bosnian guns opened up. Beginning Thursday morning, Bosnian artillery, machine-gun and infantry attacks raked rebel Serb positions 10 to...

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