President Milosevic has exploited Western reluctance to act by slowing down his campaign against Kosovo's Albanian majority -- without mounting a full-scale offensive, the Serbs have systematically recaptured territory and driven tens of thousands of civilians from their homes. The mounting tide of refugees has, however, raised pressure on Western governments to respond forcefully, and evidence of a crime against humanity could leave them little choice.
Serbia has avoided the wrath of NATO by skillfully modulating its level of violence in Kosovo. But if reports are confirmed that more than 500 civilian corpses were buried in a mass grave, the West may be forced to act. "NATO has been sitting back and waiting for the Serbs to cross a threshold," says TIME correspondent Douglas Waller. "They'll think long and hard before attacking, because to protect Western pilots NATO will have to disable the Serbs' air defenses, and that means striking throughout Serbia."