Response to ‘Russia’s Use of Kosovo Analogy for Georgia False, Experts Say’

Letter to the Editor

To whom it may concern a comment about Russia’s Use of Kosovo Analogy for Georgia False, Experts Say

I have to disagree with the so called experts in the situation between Kosovo and South Ossetia. Let’s start with the areas of the article that I find contentious…

Joseph Nye of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government agrees. “If the Russians had stopped their invasion just in South Ossetia, they might have been able to generate a certain degree of support,” he told “But by humiliating the Georgians, they raised widespread fears and were unable to generate diplomatic backing.”

Mr. Nye seems to have forgotten the humiliation Serbia suffered due to the 78 day bombing campaign. Not only did NATO attack military targets (without UN approval I might add), it also bombed civilian and infrastructure sites as well. More innocent civilians died in Serbia due to NATO’s attack than died in Russia’s response to Georgian aggression. Saakashvili is no paragon of democracy; he has jailed political opponents and tried to shut down any media that criticizes him, not to mention the cowardly attack he launched on South Ossetia while the world’s attention was turned to the opening ceremonies of the Olympics. No matter how much the western media tries to spin it, Georgia attacked first and therefore should be noted as the aggressor.

In 1999, after the ouster of Serbian forces, the U.N. Security Council – with Russia’s full agreement – established an interim U.N. administration, provided for local self-government, and provided for a political process to determine Kosovo’s future status, which contemplated possible independence.

Local self-government where does that come from? The authorities in the province were/are UNMIK (United Nations Mission in Kosovo) and KFOR (NATO’s Kosovo Force), the ethnic Albanians (there is no such thing as a Kosovar) of the province could try to do this or that, but ultimately it came down to UNMIK and KFOR’s yea or nay on any issue.

Now, there is another group trying to go into the province, EULEX, which is a European Union Rule of Law Mission, which is there to help maintain the law, evidently the ethnic Albanians aren’t capable to do too much for themselves, especially since they have a tendency every so often to attack the minorities in the province (the last WORST attack was in March 2004 in which many of those in the Serb minority were attacked, some killed, homes firebombed and Christian Orthodox churches vandalized). Yet, despite the presence of the above mentioned groups Kosovo still manages to flourish in weapons, drug and human trafficking, not to mention the presence of organized crime that some of the Kosovo Albanian government officials have been linked too.

Some of those same officials are war criminals with blood on their hands. Also, one should know that UN Resolution 1244 states that Kosovo is a part of Serbia, plain and simple, the dismemberment of the province from Serbia is a breach of international law, when the ICJ determines the legality of this issue my bet is that it will side with Serbia, that’s why the US and EU have been pressuring Serbia to stop the legal process that ANY country is entitled to under international law.

The United States and most European countries have long recognized Kosovo’s unique status. “We don’t see the independence of Kosovo as some kind of precedent that should in any way encourage other groups to break away from nation-states in Europe,” said Under Secretary of State Nicholas Burns in a February briefing on formal U.S. recognition of Kosovo.

I am an American, a Reaganite, and I find this to be supremely arrogant on the US and some EU countries part. Who are we to say what is or what isn’t unique. I’m sure the Basque region in Spain feels differently, or maybe the Transniestr region in Moldava or the Islamic forces in Mindanao of the southern part of the Philippines. At one time in the past (before the previous two administrations) this country pledged to Russia (after the fall of the USSR) not to bring the countries surrounding Russia into NATO, maybe a loose partnership, but not full membership and what did the past two Presidents do, they went back on that word.

The West has constantly humiliated, poked and prodded the Russian bear since the fall of the USSR and the country finally got sick of it. Now we have the one country, Russia that has the most sway over Iran backing away from helping us to stop the Iranians from getting nuclear weapons. One can only expect a proud country like Russia to continue to work with us constantly without considering their causes as well and that’s exactly what the West has done. We have taken advantage of the Russians, pure and simple.

Now we have the US and most EU members essentially telling the world that Kosovo is “unique”, how can our officials keep a straight face when telling the world to think as we do, to do what we want them to do, to act how we want them to act, its sheer arrogance at the highest level. Kosovo is Pandora’s Box; it essentially tells separatist groups in the world that force is the best way to achieve your goals, especially if you can get the West to back your attempt. That is the one big difference between the two, the US and EU back Kosovo, whereas South Ossetia and Abkhazia are backed by Russia.

It all comes down to interests and with the US having the second largest military base built since Vietnam, Camp Bondsteel, located in Kosovo, there’s no way we were ever going to let the Serbs have the province back, we have the Albanians in our back pockets and the Serbs are much too independent minded. It doesn’t matter that ethnic cleansing of the Serb population is taking place right under UNMIK and KFOR’s noses.

If Kosovo is so safe why haven’t the 200,000 Kosovo Serbs refugees returned. Why does UNMIK and KFOR have to constantly guard Christian Orthodox sites 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year?

A multi-ethnic Kosovo is a pipe dream and the only Serbs that have stayed are in constant fear of the day another situation like the March 2004 riots will take place, check out the latest OSCE report on Kosovo. NATO embarked on a series of misadventures in the mid to late 90’s, it went from a group of nations who wanted to have self-defense measures in place to something entirely opposite of what is was meant to be.

NATO has backed the ethnic cleansing of Serbs from the Kragina region of Croatia (WWII Nazi sympathizers who helped run the 2nd deadliest concentration camp during that time, Jasnevac), attacked Serb positions in Bosnia in defense of the Bosniaks (Bosnian Muslims, who had their own Handzar SS divisions during WWII, not to mention their wartime leader was a Nazi recruiter) and the ethnic Albanians in Kosovo (who also had their own Skanderbeg SS division as well) who essentially made a land grab, with help from the West, of a sovereign nation.

Do not get me wrong, I do not condone the Milosevic regime and the wars that took place in the Balkans, but here is the crux of the matter….it was war, war isn’t pretty, it isn’t romantic and ALL sides committed atrocities. Unfortunately, the NATO led governments in coordination with the western main stream media kept all atrocities, other than Serb, out of the public eye.

War has a cost, in money, lives, etc…That is unless one carries out a nasty bombing campaign from afar for 78 days. I am a proud American, but I am not proud of my government’s actions since Bush I and, unfortunately, I don’t see my country or Western Europe changing tactics any time soon. Good luck to the world, you’re going to need it.

Thanks for your time