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Feature: Radio B2-92

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8/12/99

Belgrade free radio station B92 has been under siege for more than four months - much longer than Operation Allied Force lasted. That's because it's easier to rebuild things than people, and, after all, the Combined Forces of NATO was dropping tons of bombs on them. A warning notice from the FCC is cake after this.

Providing a true sense of the scene while the bombs fell and providing independent commentary from both sides of the fence, it's been a dangerous time, with numerous threats, surveillance, and the murder of colleagues.

Fortunately, though, B92's back on the air, with a slightly new name, but no change in the the old attitude and resolve.

Broadcasting slightly down the dial at 91.1 FM now, the staff of Radio B2-92 (including the station's original founders) broadcast a slightly curtailed schedule, letting the city of Belgrade know what they've known all along - what's still calling itself "B92" on their original frequency is a farce.

Of course, the powers-that-be in Yugoslavia likely have bigger issues on their mind right now, even though the station's situation is still volatile.

The resurrection comes only after a heavy sacrifice touching many segments of Yugoslavia's independent media. B2-92's original facilities have been completely and effectively seized.

But B2-92 is telling the story of its country better than Radio Yugoslavia has. It just goes to show how much authority a license really holds when it matters. And that's not a bad lesson learned, after all.