Crossfire War – BELGRADE – TEHRAN – ATHENS WATCH – Southeast Europe Theatre: Belgrade – Tehran – Athens – Moscow – Ankara – Sofia – Bucharest/Tirana – Pristina – Vienna – Brussels – Warsaw; “Waiting for that Kosovo Bomb to happen…” Serbia PM Vuk Draskovic – Serbian Radical – Ultra-Nationalist Party to Take Over if Kosovo Independence Declared by UN – Attack NATO Forces in Kosovo
Night Watch: BELGRADE – Serbia Foreign Minister Vuk Draskovic said in an interview with Beta news agency the loss of Kosovo would cause “an emotional shock and a feeling of national humiliation among Serbs.” It would then result in a chain reaction of instability and turbulence throughout the Balkans. Draskovic then warned that followers of former Serbian nationalist leader President Slobodan Milosevic would then re-emerge, that they were “waiting for that Kosovo bomb to happen and then what could follow in Serbia, return their people to power.” [SERBIANNA]
The ultra-nationalist, Serbian Radical Party are the political descendents of Milosevic and his nationalist policies, and they are by no means a secret underground presence. They are the leading party in Serbia’s Parliament as a result of receiving more votes that any other party last January. The Radical Party leader, Tomislav Nikolic has threatened a popular uprising either if Kosovo is granted independence, by the United Nations Security Council or if that is vetoed, then if the UN-NATO-EU-OSCE attempt to impose Kosovo independence on Serbia. Nikolic stated, “Foreign envoys are these days asking President Boris Tadic and Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica whether we are capable of carrying out an uprising. I can tell you we are.”
Nikolic has already called on his followers to gather in Belgrade as the UN Security Council makes its decision. No official decision is expected before April but it is quite possible Albanian militant groups could have started the violence before then by increasing their demonstrations and attacks against symbols of international authority, the United Nations Mission building in Pristina and offices of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE). Instead of throwing rocks and stones, Molotov cocktails and grenades could be used next time. The Albanians do not really trust the continued delays and it was their war for independence, which provided NATO with its excuse to attack Serbia in 1999 and occupy the province. NATO’s 78-day air campaign began in late March that year.
What Nikolic outlined was an uprising very similar to the one Serbs conducted October 5, 2000 that caused the removal of Milosevic as head of state when more Serbs had refused to support his continued confrontational policies with the UN- EU-NATO. However, that was seven years ago and since then the United Nations and Brussels has agreed to Kosovo independence, the center of Serbian identity and 15% of the country. Nikolic has also said when the Serbian Radicals take power they will fight another war against NATO, its units stationed in Kosovo province. Last year Belgrade staged its first military parade in 30 years as they celebrated their re-arming, probably with assistance from Moscow – Tehran – Beijing. Russia withdrew from the Balkans after 1999, realizing the division of Yugoslavia was a mistake but still supports Serbian people. Iran and China would both love to see the West weakened by continued fighting.
U. S Secretary of Defence William Cohen predicted this situation in 1998 when NATO was preparing to intervene further south into Serbia in support of the ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, as U. S. Ambassador to the UN Richard Holbrooke was having all those closed-door meetings with Milosevic. Cohen stated if NATO commits forces, there both sides could eventually attack them.