In March the seasons change and sunshine falls on America. In March American politicians venture to foreign counties -- to drop bombs.
March 1999 -- the United States entered Yugoslavia.
"Our armed forces joined our NATO allies in air strikes against Serbian forces responsible for the brutality in Kosovo," said US President Bill Clinton.
March 2011 -- the United States entered Libya.
"The UN Security Council passed a strong resolution that demands an end to the violence against [Libyan] citizens. It authorizes the use of force," US President Barack Obama said.
From one democratic president to another, bombing commences. The US and coalition forces reign down on Libya over the anniversary of the Yugoslavia bombings.
The attack on Libya was sanctioned by the UN Security Council, in contrast to the bombings in Yugoslavia. Without approval in 1999, NATO took the lead in the first time the alliance attacked an independent and sovereign nation which posed no threat to the organization's members. Similarly, Libya poses no threat to the nations leading the campaign of aggressive attacks.
There are many sticking parallels between the two wars.
The enemy in 1999 was Slobodan and "The New Hitler" -- Milosevic. Today it is Moammar Ghadafi who has been in power in Libya for over 40 years.
"As much as Ghadafi is this John Galliano-dressed freak show, he modernized Libya for a while," said Pepe Escobar, a correspondent from the Asia Times.
Nevertheless, America seeks regime change and a nation friendlier to US interests.
"Ghadafi needs to step down and leave," Obama stated.
"What we are seeing is a full-fledged was, including attempting evidently to kill the head of state of the targeted country. That again is a page from a Yugoslav book from 12 years ago," said Rick Rozoff of Stop NATO. "What has the world learned? Evidently, not much."
Officially, the US and allied intervention is one of humanitarian concern -- the same rational argued in 1999 when bombings commenced in Yugoslavia.
"You say you can bomb a country because you are coming to "save its people", and essentially that was what the rationale behind the war in Yugoslavia," explained Michel Chossudovsky, the director of the Centre for Research on Globalization in Montréal. "You don't come to the rescue of civilians with bombs and missiles, ok? Bombs and missiles are part of a killing machine, and they inevitably will kill civilians."
Like Yugoslavia, a no-fly zone has ignited the engine of the war machine -- a green light to use bombing and airstrikes. The UN agreement on Libya created the no-fly zone and went further to allow "all means necessary" which opens the doors for nearly any type of assault.
In Yugoslavia thousands of people were killed and millions displaced.
"After the war, when they did a count, they found that US and NATO bombs had destroyed 14 tanks in Serbia. But, they had also bombed 437 schools," said Sara Flounders from the International Action Center.
Experts are predicting a similar outcome in Obama's war in Libya. The White House is promising the conflict will last only days, not week -- just days. Initially, the same guarantee was given for the war in Yugoslavia. That conflict lasted two and a half months.
"They think that a quick bit of bombing will sort the matter out, but in fact, I think they will find that it will last far longer than they've gambled for," remarked journalist John Laughland.
12 years on Serbia still remembers the losses it suffered at the hands of US led NATO bombings and the US is now entering its fourth set of attacks on foreign soil in the past 12 years.