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Kosova's secession - Part 1
What is conveniently forgotten?



Jan Oberg

February 17, 2008

The Albanian leaders of Kosova (or Kosovo or Kosovo i Metohija) declared themselves independent from Serbia at 03.00 pm on Sunday the 17th of February. If you think that Kosovo is small and this is of little concern to you - allow me to tell you why this is a piece of European and world politics the importance of which is in inverse proportion to the size of that tiny province.

This is secession declaration. For all practical purposes Kosovo will, unfortunately for the Western game players, not be independent.

For anyone who knows the history of the underlying conflict here, it is easy to understand why the Kosovo-Albanians are happy.

Good-hearted ordinary Albanians who have been severely repressed will feel secure and free at last. Long ago their leaders met secretly in Kacanik and declared a constituent “Republic of Kosova” within Yugoslavia on September 22, 1991 which was endorsed by an unofficial referendum held a few days later.

At least two top leaders, prime minister Hashim Thaci and former Prime Minister Agim Ceku can feel relieved since they can now be sure they'll not be brought to the the Hague Tribunal like former Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj.

The West’s support to the formerly terrorist-declared Kosovo Liberation Army, UCK/KLA as well as NATO’s extraordinarily foolish bombing for peace campaign was a blatant side-taking for the Albanians; they have very good reasons to expect Independence to be delivered. No Albanian could interpret it as anything but support not only for their human rights but for the nationalist, secessionist project: Independent Kosova.

I for one understand and celebrate with the good-hearted ordinary Albanians of Kosova today. And why not? TFF has supported the idea of an independent Kosova at the time when it could have been realised in a decent, lawful manner.

With “the father of the nation” in Kosovo, Dr. Ibrahim Rugova and his colleagues, we worked out the model - until KLA/UCK was formed in 1993 and began to undermine his unique non-violent leadership – for a Kosova with open borders, no army, non-aligned with any military system, promising never to unite with Albania or other Abanian-inhabited territoires and - not the least! - achieved through negotiation, dialogue and international mediation assistance by the UN and others.

If this Kosova had been recognised today, it would have been Happy Sunday for all parties. Now it is Sad Sunday for most of the Balkans and the international community - no matter what they try to make us believe.

Indeed, for many separatist movements around the world, today’s secession is very promising – Chechenya, Kurdistan, Abkhazia, Tibet, Taiwan, the Basque country, etc....

Otherwise and for quite a few, Sunday is a sad birthday. NATO and the EU don’t yet know that it includes them: From today they will have a multi-decade burden to make Kosova succeed or have to face war and cancel this secession at some point by force.

The historical memory of the West is dangerously short. Those who decide to cheer and to recognize independent Kosova may be reminded about things such as these  - if they don’t already know but turn a blind eye:

The historic nationalist leanings, the ethnic cleansing policies, and militarism of the murky UCK, the Kosovo Albanian Liberation Army, KLA, that became NATOs ally on the ground after having been supported by CIA and the German Intelligence Service – all conveniently forgotten in most media and European/US statements today.

The US and the Clinton Administration's documented lies about Milosevic' Hitleristic genocide plan (he was bad enough, but not that stupid and neither a Hitler), the left's, one-sided human rights and peace activists’ and Green enthusiasm for NATO's "humanitarian intervention" will be neglected.

It will be forgotten that the international community overlooked the Kosovo conflict while a few of us predicted war there 7 years before it actually happened as a result of the fact that no mediation initiative was taken.

It is also forgotten on Sunday that the highest civilian leader responsible for the destruction of Yugoslavia was NATO S-G Javier Solana; he was rewarded by being kicked upwards to the post of EU foreign policy chief. This non-convicted war criminal has a personal interest in seeing Kosovo independent – otherwise his and Wesley Clark’s destruction of Yugoslavia was a mistake!

The mainstream media will continue to operate on black-and-white images effectively constructed by American marketing and public relations firms in the early 1990s. Some will continue to disseminate the view that this was and is not a complex conflict that requires knowledge to understand and skills to solve; no, it was a Hitler-like, one-sided madness by Serbs, by the paria Serbs of today's modern civilised Europe.

So effective were these media constructions that many younger journalists today are not even aware of them; they also choose to repeat what their colleagues said before, re-printng each others telegrams - few bothering anymore about examining sources and providing balance.

Totally forgotten are also features of this conflict such as:

  1. that this secession is illegal in every sense according to international law and UN Security Council resolution 1244 that makes it abundantly clear that Kosovo belongs to Serbia;
  2. this secession is realized outside the UN SC and Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt's smart idea of giving the independence process a "semblance" of legality has failed in the eyes of anyone who can still see and think, in short, a blow to international law, the UN Charter and all human rights concerns,
  3. that the new EU mission is neither established through UN Security Council decision nor accepted by Serbia but has been agreed with Kosovo’s leaders at a time when it was not yet declared independent; people with a great sense of humour has named it “EULex”, lex being Latin for “law”!
  4. that Kosovo cannot be recognised because, among other things, it does not control its territory fully (earlier example Croatia when it did not control Krajina);
  5. that Europe’s largest refugee problem is in Serbia and made up of Serbs ethically cleansed out of Kosovo after 1999. Of 200.000 only a few thousand have returned during the last 9 years – a clear evidence that the Kosova-Albanian leadership has not done enough to stand credible when they say that their Kosova will be multi-ethnic (and no Romas have returned);
  6. that the EU and NATO and the U.S. were complicit in the dissolution of Yugoslavia and its mindless violence – through arms trade and hopelessly uninformed “conflict-management” and fake mission mandate and games of intelligence services. Our governments’ guilt in it all is, of course, non-existent – the convenient lie being that all was, is and will be the fault of the Serbs and their “ally” Russia. And since Serbs and Russians are “bad” people we don’t have to listen to any of their arguments
  7. that the mission of the UN, OSCE and EU in Kosovo since 1999 has been a unique failure in terms of peace, development, economic growth, human rights and reconciliation.

If 1/10 of what has been stated about Serbs as a people had ever been stated about "Jews" or "Americans" the public and the media would have cried "Anti-Americanism!" and "Anti-Simitism". The journalist behind would be forced to find a new job.

With Palestinians, Serbs and Muslims/Muhamad, grosso modo, racist attitudes, lack of empathy and collective punishment is politically very correct – indeed the only way to think.

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