Washington Secrets

Albright raps 'disgusting Serbs' in Prague book signing

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Politics,Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets

Clinton-era Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, confronted by pro-Serbian protesters who called her a war criminal during a recent book signing in her native Prague, pushed them aside as "disgusting Serbs" in a confrontation going viral on the internet.

Displaying her trademark feistiness, Albright is seen in the video as sternly shouting "get out, get out," to the protesters who arrived with a film crew. As they closed in on her, she stood up and said, "That's it! Get out," and soon walked away with an aide after saying, "they are disgusting Serbs."

Albright, on a book tour to tout her new and well-received memoir, "Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948," was in her birthplace for the book signing on October 23.

According to the YouTube account, activists with "Friends of Serbs in Kosovo" led by film director Vaclav Dvorak, presented her with Dvorak's documentary "Stolen Kosovo" and posters suggesting that Albright's push for bombings of Serbs in Kosovo was inhumane.

"This is your work as well, madam" they charged, asking her to sign their posters, which she brushed away.

As Clinton's top diplomat, Albright headed the U.S. participation in the Yugoslav wars in Bosnia and Kosovo and is credited for pushing NATO into the humanitarian crisis. Time Magazine called it "Madeleine's War."

Aide Erin Cochran, who was with her at the Prague book signing, told Secrets, "Everything was calm until this group arrived, apparently intent on causing a disruption. As Secretary of State, Dr. Albright had worked to halt ethnic cleansing in Bosnia and Kosovo - and some people have never forgiven her for that. The resulting episode in the bookstore was regrettable but it did nothing to tarnish Dr. Albright's enjoyable return visit to her hometown, Prague."

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