Today in Belgrade: City Under Fire

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Belgrade, Thursday, 12.45 a.m. (local time)

"We just had a second air raid siren. Local media reports that 20 targets have been hit. Belgrade today was a basically calm city with everyone going about their business trying to collect food and stuff like that. Then, as the first air raid sirens sounded at 8:12 p.m., people started to panic. There was an evacuation of the city; people ran for their cars. Men were running through the streets trying to find shelter. On the horizon you could see the explosions at some of the military bases. Things calmed down a little after that, and there was an all-clear siren at 11 p.m. The second wave is coming in right now.

"Two fascinating things: The targeting here has been Special Police barracks and training facilities, which is a surprise to us since it was expected that the primary targets would be radar and stuff like that. And there hasn't been a very large response. We've seen reports of air-to-air fights and occasionally anti-aircraft fire went up, but we haven't seen the massive effort we saw at the beginning of the Gulf War. Right now we're trying to assess the damage in town. Slobodan Milosevic was on TV earlier tonight basically saying that he'd made the right decision to protect Serbia. Local TV is playing up the angle that Russia and China are supporting Yugoslavia against the NATO strike. It's a bizarre atmosphere."

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