Serbia is one of two republics within what's left of the splintered Yugoslavia. The other is Montenegro. Kosovo is a province in southern Serbia where ethnic Albanians outnumber Serbs nine to one. Most Kosovo residents favor autonomy or secession from Serbia, but Serbs consider the area vital to their national identity.
More than 2,000 people have died in fighting that began last year when the government of Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic began a crackdown on independence-minded ethnic Albanians. Hundreds of thousands of refugees have been left homeless.
By attacking Yugoslavia, President Clinton says the United States and its NATO allies have three goals:
To show their determination to end aggression and achieve peace in the Balkans.
To make Yugoslavian President Slobodan Milosevic pay a price for violence against Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority.
To diminish the Serbs' ability to wage war on the Kosovars.