Crossfire War – Albanian Nationalists Stage Another Attack on Macedonian Police

Crossfire War – PRISTINA – TIRANA – TEHRAN WATCH – Southeast Europe Theatre: Pristina – Tehran – Ankara – Sarajevo – Tirana/(Brussels – Vienna – Warsaw)/Skopje – Belgrade – Podogrica – Athens – Sofia – Moscow; Macedonian Police Commander Killed by Albanian Guerrillas Near Kosovo/Macedonian Border – Macedonian Parliament Scheduled to Debate “Latest Events in Vaksince and its Impact on Security Situation in the Country” – Albanian Nationalist Could Destabilize Several Balkan Countries

Night Watch: VAKSINCE – As all eyes are on the Kosovo Albanian dispute with the Serbian government in Belgrade it is quite possible the next war in Southeast Europe could begin with an eruption of violence in the last place heavy fighting took place, between the Albanian community in Macedonia and the government in Skopje. The fighting lasted for seven months in 2001 along the Albania/Macedonia border and was completely unexpected. Today the Macedonian news agency MakFax is reporting shortly after midnight, Monday morning, the ethnic Albanian commander of the Macedonian police station at Matejche was killed and two officers wounded when Albanian guerrillas near the Macedonian town of Kumanova ambushed their vehicle on the road linking the villages of Slupchane and Vaksince. This is near Serbia’s Presevo valley and at least five nationalistic disputes meet here: Serbian/Albanian/Macedonian/Greek/Bulgarian and they can all find military support from other governments in and beyond the region, plus with the ever present factor of the international arms market, can easily prolong the next wave of fighting as it did in the early 1990s with the initial division of Yugoslavia. NATO-Warsaw Pact-United Nations did not consider that element as they assumed the crisis could be solved through a series of conferences orchestrated by Brussels-Vienna. And in this the area which provided the flashpoint for the First World War 1914-18. [FOCUS] reported at least three armed incidents during August, just one month after veterans of the Kosovo Liberation Army publicly announced their support for Kosovo’s independence from Serbia. However, as mentioned above it is not only Serbia the Albanians feel oppressed by. Faton Klinaku, one of the Albanian leaders of the Organization of the Veterans of the Army for the Liberation of Kosovo accused the governments of Montenegro, Serbia, Macedonia and Greece of occupying Albanian land, “The Macedonians, Montenegrins and the Serbs from Eastern Kosovo (South Serbia) are occupiers and the Albanian people live in the conditions of a classic occupation of their lands. This is also valid for the Albanians in Greece since Greece refuses to recognize their rights.” The Albanian gunmen that carried out the latest attack are unquestionably motivated by the same belief. [SERBIANNA]

The Macedonian Parliament in Skopje has been scheduled to debate “the latest events in Vaksince and its impact on security situation in the country.” It should not be surprising if the government decides to increase its police presence along Macedonia’s border with Kosovo and may even suggest cooperation with Belgrade since Serbia is under fire from the same Albanian threat. These attacks could also at least temporarily end the territorial dispute between Athens and Skopje over Macedonia naming itself after one of Greece’s provinces, which has ruined relations between the two countries since 1992 when Macedonia became independent. [MAKFAX]

This regional cooperation against Albanian nationalists, in their pursuit of a “Greater Albania”, puts NATO and the European Union (EU), both of them headquarted in Brussels, in a suspect position and powerless to achieve any negotiated settlement since Brussels supports Kosovo Albanian independence. Therefore every country in the region with an Albanian minority assumes Brussels supports and justifies any armed Albanian action against them, which is exactly how the Albanians in Kosovo Serbia received Brussels support, even more so since Brussels, after the Cold War ended in 1990, has enjoyed waging war against Belgrade. Representatives of Albanian militia and guerrilla groups are already prepared to say in front of any media outlet or public forum, Brussels supports Albanians in Kosovo Serbia therefore they should support the Albanian minority community in Greece-Macedonia-Montenegro-Bulgaria. This regional alliance in support of Serbia began to take shape after the initial division of Yugoslavia as every government in Southeast Europe, including Tirana, supported Belgrade against the economic embargo imposed on Serbia by the EU through the United Nations. Their economic support is about to become military support.

As always, waiting in the wings and prepared to enter the most intriguing, labyrinthine theatre in World War III, is Tehran, which had a strategic meeting with an Albanian government minister in Tirana less than three months ago (6-30). Attacks by Albanian nationalists have increased ever since. Though Tehran also signed a security agreement with Belgrade in January 2006, Iran does not care how the war resumes here or even who wins just as long as Tehran is able to use the fighting to not only keep the West occupied with war in another region, instead of attacking Iran, but Tehran also intends to use the war to silence Vienna and end the investigation into its nuclear weapons program by the UN agency based there.

Willard Payne is an international affairs analyst who specializes in International Relations. A graduate of Western Illinois University with a concentration in East-West Trade and East-West Industrial Cooperation, he has been providing incisive analysis to NewsBlaze. He is the author of Imagery: The Day Before.