Lake: Opposition to Bosnia Mission Will Fade


DESPITE opposition in the Senate, the Clinton administration is confident that it will win congressional - and eventually public - support for its mission to guarantee a peace settlement in Bosnia, President Clinton's national security adviser said yesterday.

"When you actually get an agreement," Anthony Lake said at a Monitor breakfast, "when you actually see the beginnings of the benefits of peace, and when the public sees very highly trained American troops doing their job, then the quite natural questioning about a very difficult mission will begin to fade because the questions will begin to get answered."

Mr. Lake and other administration officials have cited parity of arms between the Muslim, Croat, and Serb forces as essential to long-term peace in Bosnia and as a precondition to the withdrawal of US troops.

The Nov. 21 peace accord initialed in Dayton, Ohio, requires the Bosnia Serbs to reduce their arms stockpiles. The US will ensure that whatever gap remains between Bosnian Serb and Bosnian government military capabilities is filled by third parties. US and NATO troops "will not be involved in this and will therefore maintain their neutrality," Lake said.

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