Before deciding he'd be better off at home, Russian Prime Minister Yevgeny Primakov made his feelings about a NATO attack on Serbia quite clear, reports CBS News Senior European Correspondent Tom Fenton.
"We are firmly against it," he said. "Firmly."
Primakov, in a dramatic gesture of opposition, canceled plans to visit Washington as the crisis intensified. He was over the Atlantic, en route to Washington, when his jet turned around and headed back to Moscow.
|CBS News Special Coverage|
Meanwhile in Moscow Tuesday afternoon, CBS News reports that the U.S. Embassy was being searched after a bomb threat was called in.
No one ever really expected the Russians to be on board. In spite of that fact, there is a surprising degree of unity between the United States and its NATO allies, made possible by none other than Serbian leader, Slobodan Milosevic.
By stepping up his brutal campaign in Kosovo in recent days, Milosevic taunted the West while producing new pictures of human suffering that have dominated European news coverage. The do-nothing opton is now morally unacceptable and politically impossible.
Blair had urged Milosevic to accept a diplomatic solution, but after the failure of U.S. special envoy Richard Holbrooke's meetings with Milosevic he told the House of Commons: "We must act to save thousands of innocent men, women and children from humanitarian catastrophe, from death, barbarism and ethnic cleansing by a brutal dictatorship."
British support was never in doubt, but even the usually reluctant Germans were ready to commit their warplanes. For the first time since World War II, the Luftwaffe may be bombing Europeans.
There is also determination here to make sure the Bosnia fiasco will not be repeated. There, the Serb ability to exploit divisions among the allies allowed the slaughter of civilians to continue while the world's most powerful military alliance stood by.
For now there is unity. The question is, how long this unity will last if the going gets tough? Especially if getting out of Kosovo begins to look a lot tougher than getting in.