August 8, 1999
August 8, 1999 - Note from the Editor: Observing the events in Kosovo it would appear that NATO's KFOR is in for a rude awakening as its favorite ally, the KLA, is up to no good (to very little surprise for those of you who have been reading Swans for the past four months). In a couple of months, with winter approaching, KFOR will be up to its ears in mud and the U.N., being blamed as usual for the mess, will toil with the dilemma of a freezing and starving population. Meantime, we'll have moved on to newer battles and victory parades, and planning our end-of-the-millennium celebrations. In addition to this week's column, Swans is publishing the transcript of quite an interesting lecture given by Professor Lord Robert Skidelsky. Worth reading, the link to this lecture is repeated at this end of this page.
Questions keep trotting through my mind. How is "Officialdom" going to report the present deeds committed against the Serbs and other minorities in Kosovo and Metohija under the complacent eyes of KFOR, two months after the end of the NATO military aggression against Serbia? What will be the reaction of the Western Powers when they finally come to realize that the bargain they made with the KLA will turn out to be Faustian at best? And how will Secretary of State Madeleine Albright be affected by the recognition that her hugging teddy bear, Hashim Taqi, the self-designated KLA leader, is really a bully intending to pursue his agenda (independence for Kosovo and expunction of all minorities)?
It is becoming increasingly difficult to keep a tight lead on the exactions and crimes being perpetrated and the approaching state of anarchy in the latest Western protectorate. "The only regime that has been imposed in Kosovo is that of terror," writes the French newspaper France-Soir. The German Nachrichten (Nuremberg) says that the "KLA was 'terrorizing Serbs and Gypsies to such an extent that it cannot be called anything else but 'ethnic cleansing.'" In London, the Independent reports the collusion between the KLA and Albanian gangs from Tirana, Albania. It goes on to predict that KFOR will soon be forced to clash with the KLA.
At last count, over 35 churches and monasteries have been destroyed, over 80 percent of the Serbs and Gypsies, fearing for their lives, have fled the province, the death toll keeps growing, houses keep being looted and burned, girls are kidnapped for possible prostitution in Italy, cars are stolen, and the terror continues.
The 35,000 NATO troops appear unable to prevent the pervasive violence and the U.N. has only about 500 police officers on the ground out of the expected 3,500.
Officialdom seems slightly taken aback by this new form of humanitarian intervention. "NATO did not drive Slobodan Milosevic's brutal occupation army out of Kosovo to allow a new era of disorder to commence," laments an editorial of The New York Times on August 6, 1999, apparently oblivious to the fact that the Yugoslav army was within its sovereign borders and it is KFOR that is an occupying army.
Or I have it all wrong, and my initial questions have long been answered. After all, the U.S. administration has known all along about the KLA. The deed is done now and Thomas L. Friedman can feel confident enough to write what had been denied for the 78 days of carpet bombing, that is, "Air power worked not because NATO bombed all the Serbian troops out of Kosovo but because it bombed all the jobs out of Belgrade - crushing its economic infrastructure, and creating something of a vacuum." A great example of NATO-made humanitarian intervention.
By letting anarchy carry the day, we can prepare the public for the final disposition of the problem, posited by the same Thomas L. Friedman. "We can have democracy and a small NATO presence, but only if we give up on multi-ethnicity and divide Kosovo -- only if we partition it into a separate Serbian Kosovo and a separate Albanian Kosovo (which would mean a second Albanian state) and then just patrol the line between them."
Then on to the independence of Montenegro and of the Vojvodina region and we will have accomplished our aim of dismantling Yugoslavia into puppet states which will become the latest eager clientele of our trans-national corporations for their better quarterly profits.
Then on to the Caspian Sea. And then...
Do we own the world by any chance?
This Week's Other Article:
The End of National Sovereignty? by Professor Lord Robert Skidelsky - Transcript of his very sober Lecture given at the Royal Institute of Civil Engineers on June 14, 1999.
Resources on the War in Yugoslavia and its Aftermath
Articles Published on Swans Regarding the War in Yugoslavia and its Aftermath