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avgust 20, 2008
NATO Escorting the KLA Back into Kosovo
By: Mary Mostert
For 77 days the Serbs were bombed by faceless, unidentifiable enemies
with huge amounts of firepower at their disposal. While the Alliance puts the death toll
of the Serb military at up to 10,000 and the civilian death toll in less than 500, the
Serbs put the death toll of the military at less than 500 and the civilian death toll in
the thousands. Obviously, one, or both, are not telling the truth.
In what must be one of the strangest and most disorganized cessation of hostilities in
history, NATO forces, after first demanding that all Yugoslav troops withdraw in 7 days, seem to being having problems themselves in moving in an orderly
way into Kosovo. First, the Russian beat them to Pristina, which apparently caused a near panic in both Washington and
London. And, of course,
secondly, the KLA has not put down their weapons, nor has the Yugoslav Army and Police
been willing to withdraw and leave the non-Albanian minorities in Kosovo at the mercy of
The not surprising result of the chaotic control situation over the week-end were dead
Serbs and at least two dead German journalists. German
machine-gunners riddled an old yellow Zastava car in Prizren in a gun-battle that lasted
about 20 minutes, according to London Telegraph reporter. The gun battle lasted about 20
minutes and sent hundreds of celebrating Albanian civilians diving for cover, as German
forces crouched behind concrete barricades and continued to fire up the main street in
Prizren. Finally Yugoslav army officials arrived and pleaded with them to stop.
The "peace agreement" provision that the KLA would "demilitarize"
has not taken place. As NATO troops move in, apparently their
"little brother" - the Kosovo Libration Army is also moving in. Serb sources report that KLA forces, although they should have
been demilitarized, entered Djakovica, Prizren, Decani and Pec. Serb news reported Monday
that "American General Shelton has just stated on CNN that KLA will not be disarmed,
This has created a mass exodus of Serbs and other minorities from Kosovo. News reported
by Phillip Smucker that the Serb killed in Prizren
was "shot in the back," and the shock that, while the Yugoslav police and
military, are being required to leave, or give up their arms, that the KLA is being
allowed back into Kosovo as NATO moves in will, of course, convince the Kosovo Serbs that
they have no police protection and that, once again, the KLA is on the rampage.
This will create still another "ethnically pure" Balkan state, such as
Albania, with 97% pure ethnic Albanians, Slovenia, 91% ethnic Slovenes.
Now that the negotiations are over, aspects of the Rambouillet agreement, which were
glossed over and ignored by the dominant media (but which some of us independent
commentators reported) are being mentioned. For example, On Sunday, June 13, 1999, The Los
Angeles Times published an opinion piece by Walter Russell Mead, a contributing editor of
Opinion, and senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) entitled,
"Conflict in Kosovo; a Weak Peace; There's Joy in Belgrade, only Relief in the
West." In the article Mead complains "On a number of key 'non-negotiable'
demands the administration bought a peace agreement by accepting Russian conditions. The
Rambouillet accords - the agreements we went to war to enforce - gave NATO troops the
right to travel anywhere in Yugoslavia they wished. They would have been bad news for
indicted war criminal Milosevic: With NATO soldiers driving all over his country he
wouldn't have anywhere to hide.
"But, desperately anxious to close the deal, the White House caved on this. Under
the new peace plan, Milosevic has kept NATO troops out of his remaining territory. This concession gives him a concrete item to point to as
something he 'won' in the war. NATO demanded that he allow what in practice amounted to a
Yugoslav surrender of authority throughout the country; Milosevic stood up to NATO, and the bullies backed down. He
will use that fact to help make the case why they Yugoslavs should keep him in power - and
out of jail."
Remember the vague statements about Rambouillet in February? Madeleine Albright said, on the day the KLA decided, (not surprisingly, since they were
promised Kosovo as their own country) "Today the Kosovo Albanian delegation undertook to sign the agreement after
it is reviewed by technical experts and discussed with the people of Kosovo. The
delegation invited NATO to deploy a force on the ground as part of this settlement. Kosovo
would have its own constitution and government with full responsibility for all the issues
that affect the daily lives of its people. Serbian police units would be rapidly
withdrawn. The Yugoslav military would be restricted to patrolling a five-kilometer border
zone. The Kosovo Liberation Army would also be de-militarized, and we are prepared to help
retrain qualified members who wish to join Kosovo's new multi-ethnic police. "This
settlement is the best deal either side can hope to achieve. The Contact Group extended
its deadline and kept working over the past few days because we are well aware that a
collapse here risked igniting renewed conflict and a humanitarian catastrophe.
Unfortunately, President Milosevic and his delegation failed to seize this opportunity for
While the Serbs could look forward to having a terrorist group of drug-dealers as their
police force in Kosovo, Albright
made no mention of the provision that in effect required an unconditional surrender by the Serbs to a NATO
occupying force, not only of Kosovo, but of all the rest of Yugoslavia.
And, remember the oft repeated statements that Milosevic is a "dictator" to
be compared with Adolf Hitler? Yet,
Mead recognizes in his statement that the Yugoslavs elected him. He
is obviously annoyed that, in spite of 77 days of being bombed, the Serbs are not ready to
abandon their Democratic form of government and the elected leader of the nation - even if
many of them don't like Milosevic or his policies. They
are well aware that once they agree to allowing NATO to choose their leader - they lost
the right to choose their own leaders.
Mead also mentions "the
panic that swept through Western diplomatic and military offices Friday when Russian
troops were seen headed toward Kosovo." The great fear, apparently from this CFR spokesman, was "there is nothing on paper to prevent
the Russians from establishing a Russian zone for the province's Serbs." That,
apparently, is just exactly what the Russians have in mind, - protecting the Serbs from
unrestrained KLA slaughter.
However, perhaps the most revealing aspects of Mead's article was what he called
"The White House's third cave: The Rambouillet accords laid out a clear path for the Kosovars to move toward
independence after a transitional three years. That pledge has been dropped. The current agreement makes pious, vague
references to the 'spirit' of the Rambouillet accords, but gives more weight to
Yugoslavia's legal rights over the province. Add it up, and see the sad truth: the war flopped. It is true
that the Serbs have withdrawn, but general agreement had been reached on this point before
the bombing began. The deal of June was on the table in February." (Note: a point I
made in a recent article. Had Albright and Clinton accepted the notion of Yugoslav
sovereignty - a point the Serbs endured 77 days of bombing to defend - there was no point
in bombing in the first place.)
"If we had been willing to accept U.N. authority, Russian trooops and Yugoslav
sovereignty, we likely could have had it, or something very close, without firing a
So, we find, the Serbs were right. This actually WAS an effort to take over their country.
Mead makes it clear: "One key U.S. goal in this war was to establish the
legitimacy of NATO interventions without a U.N.
mandate and to build backing among our European allies for more such interventions in the
We failed. By going back to
the Security Council (we did it under heavy pressure from our
allies), we tacitly conceded that NATO interventions need U.N. mandates. "This isn't a victory for the Serbs, but it is a political defeat for the United States - and a first-class diplomatic victory for Russia and China. We wanted to carry out the war as a NATO
campaign, but the Yugoslavs
refused to surrender to NATO, either at Rambouillet or during the bombing.
"The U.S. dream of a NATO willing and able to intervene 'out of area' without a
Security Council mandate is farther away now than it was three months ago. NATO's first war will probably be its last, and it is difficult even to imagine
the circumstances that will ever again lead Germany to fight by America's side without a
clear mandate from the Security Council."
Horrors! Does this actually mean that Bill
Clinton and NATO will have to abide by international law in the future? Mead fears it could be worse than that:
"If Russia manages to get an occupation zone, the U.S. suffers an unspinnable public
defeat. Don't look for ticker-tape parades and champagne corks on this one. An unnecessary
war has brought an ambiguous peace. Let's just hope it lasts."
What peace? There is no peace. There can be no peace based on lies, intrigue and
downright injustice. The KLA, which was dismissed as a terrorist
group, which is financed by heroin sales all over Europe and shakedowns of
Albanian-American businessmen, have come back to Kosovo in force, protected, it appears,
by NATO forces. The KLA has been in control of a portion of Northern Albania for some time
and what are conditions there? Well, a mere 6 months ago, on December 24, 1998, the U.S.
State Department issued the following warning: "Given the possibility that the U.S.
Embassy's personnel and facilities could be the targets of a terrorist attack, on August
14, 1998, the Department of State ordered the departure of Embassy personnel in
non-emergency positions and families of Embassy personnel, and later further reduced its
staff. As a result of the continued reduction in staff, the Embassy has suspended normal
operations and is able to offer only emergency services to American citizens. ... The
northeastern area of Albania, including the towns of Tropoja and Bajram Curri and the area
near the Kosovo border, remains outside effective government control. Travel to this area
is exceedingly dangerous. Even persons traveling to this area solely to render
humanitarian assistance to refugees have been attacked by bandits."
While it would be really nice to go back to business as usual, the week-end reports
look ominous. Here we are, six months later after
the US Embassy in Tirana sent its people home for fear of the chaotic situation caused by
the KLA in Albania, , bringing this bandit group of drug dealers into Kosovo and,
apparently, standing back while they go on a rampage - not only against Serbs, but also
against others. We have acted as the KLA's air
force, and have given them technical aid and
This is not the road to peace, folks. This sounds like the ground war we've been
hearing about for weeks. If NATO and the White House
is going to ignore the agreement signed by the Serbs where the KLA is concerned, it cannot expect the Serbs to abide by the agreement either. Now that the enemy is where they can
been seen - don't expect that the Serb forces, supported by the
Russians and probably the Chinese, to do nothing while the KLA does in Kosovo what it has
been doing in Northeastern Albania for quite some time.
This whole thing makes me really wonder what really IS going on in Kosovo. This is not
about the plight of refugees. There are STILL more Serb refugees than any other
nationality, and this "peace" will create probably another 100,000-200,000 Serb
If we were concerned about refugees - we would have reacted differently to Serb,
Rwandan, Sierra Leone, Cambodian, Kurdish, Tutsis, and others driven from their homes by