February 2013


STUNNING: U.S. takes Serbia’s side over KLA monument; issues “warning” to Albania over NATIONALIST rhetoric as Albanian officials openly call for UNIFICATION of “Albanian lands.” State Dept in bizarre departure from accusing and threatening Serbia over such things

Kosovo independence changed Balkans’ status, geopolitical position of [Albanians], says Pandeli Majko (FOCUS News Agency, Feb. 13)

Former Albanian prime minister, Pandeli Majko, said that the independence of Kosovo has changed the status and the geopolitical position of the Albanian nation in the region, KS Reporter informs.

“History is nothing, if nothing is being done. Albanians won independent existence, but they lost half of their territory, while Kosovo is the price that had to be paid: In 1919 Albania was divided by Kosovo and it was like the separation of twins with different fates. In 1999 Albanians’ historical battle for Kosovo was won and today Kosovo is officially recognised country. Soon, when Kosovo joins the UN, the historical process of the formation of the Albanian nation will be finalised,” Pandeli Majko remarked.

Wasn’t it just the other day that Reich spokesman in occupied Serbia was desperately parsing, un-parsing and re-parsing his words about Kosovo and UN membership?

But the bigger point today is that here’s the Albanian former prime minister announcing what Washington is still desperately lying about: that the end game will inevitably be a Greater Albania (a.k.a. “Serbian Myth/Propaganda” No. 426)

A week ago Sunday was the “five-year anniversary” of Kosovo’s self-proclaimed independence. Which is like me congratulating myself for winning a second presidential term. (The first term never happened either.) But check out this latest creative Balkan inversion that was born during the five-year anniversary celebrations last weekend. Al Jazeera’s (purposely?) confused headline to be explained further down:

Kosovo’s Unification Flag Reinforces Division (Al Jazeera, Feb. 16)

Kosovo will on Sunday [Feb. 17] mark five years since it declared independence from Serbia.

Most people are expected to wave the black and red Albanian flag, however, rather than the Kosovar flag during celebrations.

[How surprising!]

The new symbol of multi-ethnic Kosovo, bearing stars representing the six main ethnic groups of the republic, is seen by some as dividing the country. […]

Clever obfuscation. The “division” the Albanians are worried about is between Kosovo and Albania, which is why they wave the Albanian flag — the real “unification flag.” They don’t like the new, six-star flag because it reminds them that there are still non-Albanians in Kosovo, and this apparently is “divisive.” Albanians are the ultimate xenophobes. Knowing this but never admitting it, the EU therefore created the six-star flag to “serve as a consistent reminder of the ethnic groupings here,” as the Jazeera reporter puts it. Precisely to remind Albanians that they’re supposed to keep some non-Albanians around and protect them from the Albanian majority, so as to keep up the charade of “multi-ethnic Kosovo.”

Which brings us back to Al Jazeera’s misleading headline. The blue and yellow six-star flag is not a “unification” flag, since “unification” generally refers to that between Kosovo and Albania. Perhaps the intended word was “unity” flag. As in, unity among the six ethnic groups of Kosovo — the fairy tale that Western political elites tell themselves before bed. As already stated, that unity is indeed something an Albanian would find divisive.

In the video above, Self-Determination party (Vetevendosje) leader Albin Kurti is interviewed. Reporter Paul Brennan says Kurti “sees no difference between campaigning for stronger Kosovo independence and eventual unification with Albania.” (Insert 14-year Duhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! here.) Brennan paraphrases Kurti: “The Kosvoan flag will never be loved,” and Kurti adds, “It will never take a proper place in the hearts of the people.”

That’s because the Kosovo war was never about Kosovo, “freedom”, “liberation” or “independence.” It was always about Albania. The Clintons lied. The Bushes lied. John McCain lied. Madeleine Albright lied. Condoleezza Rice lied. And the rest of the clones.

And, lo and behold, just a few days before the “independence” celebrations, a leaked State Dept. memo is revealed. Notice the unprecedented entrance (unprecedented until December 2012) of the word “nationalist” to describe someone in the Balkans other than the Serbs. Indeed, it’s finally being used to describe our clients, the Serbs’ avowed enemy. But, again, don’t expect any reassessments about whether it was this virulent nationalism that the “nationalist” Serbs were fighting in the first place. Notice also the “danger to regional stability” charge now finally being applied to the actual danger, whereas for the past two decades we’ve been told that not giving Albanians what they want (a.k.a. “Serbian intransigence”) is the “danger to regional stability.”

Leaked Memo Condemns Albanian PM Sali Berisha’s Nationalist Rhetoric, Calling it Danger to Regional Stability (Balkan Insight, Feb. 15)


Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha (Who wouldn’t trust a mug like this?)

The undated memo seems to have been sent to Prime Minister Sali Berisha after Serbia took down a memorial to ethnic Albanian fighters in the southern Serbian town of Presevo in January.

The State Department says that Albanian leaders are veering away from their traditional constructive role in the region. [Ha ha ha ha ha! The role we called “constructive” because we were going along with the Albanian program.]

“Recent public statements made by Albanian politicians on the Presevo monument have crossed the line from responsible political discussion to counterproductive, potentially dangerous rhetoric,” the memo reads.

“They not only promote more inflammatory behavior and distract from the region’s priorities but also potentially incite violence, erode peace and stability and impact our relationship,” it adds.

Albanian politicians? Inciting violence? Nawwwwwwww! And could it be that our notion of “the region’s priorities” differed from our clients’ — again?

…Berisha declared that the removal of the monument showed that Serbia was a racist state, adding that ethnic Albanians in the Balkans ought one day to unite in one country.

“This act shows once more that there is only one way, the unification of the Albanian nation, for Albanians to enjoy the freedom they earned by shedding blood,” the Prime Minister said.

Gloves and masks are off, Baby! One also notes that the part about Serbia being a “racist state” would normally have elicited head-nodding from Washington and Brussels, along with additional demands, threats, carrots and sticks aimed at Serbia. Has some sort of line finally been crossed by the Albanian side? Who knew there was a line to cross? Especially since even pogroms and grave-scattering hadn’t crossed it.


The memo downplays the importance of the monument, noting that it was erected illegally and that it was meant to provoke the Serbian authorities.

WASHINGTON PARROTING SERBIAN PROPAGANDA??!!!!!! Who knew the day would come?! Normally we hear such sentences from the Serbian side in self-defense against Albanian provocations and criminality, which are then followed by condemnations of Belgrade’s unconstructive role in the region, its “regression to Milosevic-era nationalism.” What’s going on? Why is Washington suddenly treating Serbs and Serbia as part of the human family? And why is it finally talking back to Albanians?

It also highlights efforts by the OSCE mission in Belgrade and the US Embassy to negotiate an agreement between Presevo Albanians and the government of Serbia on the dispute.

The memo underlines that Berisha’s statement made negotiations harder and they were an intervention into Serbia’s internal affairs.

WHAT?????????????????????? Did Prince Lazar himself write this memo from the grave? Or Milosevic himself? Or perhaps Vojislav Kostunica — that other U.S.-promoted-then-dismissed-as-”nationalist” leader who succeeded Milosevic? Or could it be, is it possible, did we ever dream…that…maybe…these people weren’t nationalists at all — and we’re in the process of witnessing the entire U.S.-German edifice of Balkan lies and the policies constructed thereupon…fall apart? I mean, gosh, Albania’s sponsoring the KLA’s war against Serbia in 1998-99 wasn’t an intervention into Serbia’s internal affairs, nor was a full-on bombardment by U.S.-led NATO, but this little old quote by Berisha is? Does Foggy Bottom realize the colossal admission it’s just made on all counts? Oh wait, don’t tell me, “A” can equal “B”, but “A” and “A” cannot. Just like the Kosovo session being “a unique case” and therefore not a precedent for any other secessions.

Two nationalist parties, the Red and Black Alliance and the Party for Justice, Integration and Unity, PDIU, have appeared lately on the political scene in Albania.

The PDIU, which is a junior government partner, represents the Cham minority, Albanians expelled from Greece at the end of World War Two, and targets its rhetoric at Athens.

The Red and Black Alliance focuses on the potential unification of all ethnic Albanian lands and has lashed out both against Albania’s neighbours and against Berisha, calling him an autocrat and a traitor.

Under attack, and with few successes to show off before the June 2013 parliamentary elections, Berisha has increasingly appealed to pan-Albanian sentiment.

The State Department memo says the upcoming election should not serve as an excuse for “irresponsible rhetoric and negative political messages”.

It urges Albania’s political elite to stay out of Serbia’s affairs and concentrate on its EU integration process, holding free and fair elections and on improving the economy.

“You are not making a good impression just as we prepare for a new State Department leadership,” the memo says. “Don’t make us condemn you publicly,” it warns.

Because it’s all about impressions and timing. i.e. “Shhhh! Too soon We know we’ve dug a hole with you, and we’re happy to dig it deeper, but you’re letting the cat out of the bag too soon. We can’t work with a light shone on what we’re doing; the whole beauty of the Balkans is that no one ever looks there to expose what you’re up to.

“Don’t make us condemn you”? I’m sure the Albanians are shaking in their boots. Talk about a role reversal. Yet this is the second time I’m hearing of the U.S. “warning” the Albanians since 2000, when we first dared to “warn” them as they caught us off-guard by their expanding the war beyond Kosovo. We were counter-warned then, and have been on-program ever since. What’s going on now?

U.S. warns Albania against stoking nationalism (Reuters, Feb. 15)

The United States has warned leaders in NATO ally Albania in no uncertain terms to stop stoking nationalism in the run-up to an election because they risk destabilizing the region.

Last November, the foreign minister of neighboring Greece boycotted Albanian centenary festivities in Tirana after Berisha hailed a town over the border as “Albanian lands”. The president of Macedonia, where a quarter of the population are ethnic Albanians, also stayed away.

In a memo to the Albanian Foreign Ministry reported on Friday by a number of newspapers [A number of newspapers? Really? What the hell is going on?! It all relates to FORMER Yugoslavia — no one ’s supposed to give a damn what we did with it], the U.S. State Department said Albania’s leaders were wading into “potentially dangerous” territory, given the history of ethnic conflicts in the Balkans.

Even more bluntly, it told Albanian politicians to “stay out of the affairs of Serbia”, which is in delicate European Union-mediated talks aimed at normalizing ties with Kosovo….

See what I’m saying? Our real worry is that Albania could screw up our Albanian-pushed screw-over of Serbia.

Berisha has repeatedly complained of foreign “Albanophobia”, and raised eyebrows in Serbia last month when he referred to ethnic Albanian former guerrillas there as “heroes of the Albanian nation”.

Ethnic Albanians waged insurgencies in both southern Serbia and Macedonia in 2000 and 2001. Those conflicts were a spillover of the 1998-99 war in Kosovo….

Wow, note the mention of both wars in a single news item — as if the media people knew all along — and let us know — that those aggressive Albanian wars happened, and that they were a spillover of the Kosovo war, which they’re still trying to believe was *not* an aggressive war. (And still trying to get us to believe that Clinton’s war “contained the conflict,” as promised, rather than spilling it over — as they’ve just admitted it did.)

Kosovo declared independence in 2008. But poverty, unemployment and a lack of integration continue to fuel discontent among ethnic Albanians across the region.

This is the MSM’s continued insistence on believing that Albanian nationalism and irredentism has more to do with economic discontent than with the year 1878, when plans were decided on to unite “all Albanian lands,” an ambition that Albanians take in with mother’s milk and which has caused over a century of Slav-slaughter and alignment with fascist and communist forces. The question bears asking about ourselves, their latest sponsor: Which are we?

Washington was the driving force behind Albania’s accession to NATO in 2009, and is pressing Tirana to ensure that its election is free of the violence and fraud allegations of previous votes, so that its bid to join the EU can move ahead.

Please keep up appearances, since we’ve married you! And introduced you to society, with all kinds of club memberships.

…But Berisha defended his approach.

“This nationalism does not have territorial claims,” he told a session of parliament on Friday marking Kosovo’s fifth year of statehood. “This nationalism is not based on doctrines of extermination, like the nationalisms around us.”

Yet another Albanian who doesn’t know Albanians very well. Or Serbs, if that’s whom the latter accusation is aimed at.

In the midst of all this, no sooner did Sec. of State John Kerry congratulate Serbia for its National Day (Feb 15), than on Feb. 15th he congratulated Kosovo for its National Day, causing one to wonder whether the choice of Feb. 17th in 2008 wasn’t intentionally picked so closely to Serbia’s day as yet another insult to Serbian identity:

Kosovo’s National Day

Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
February 15, 2013

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I am delighted to send best wishes to the people of the Republic of Kosovo as you celebrate your fifth anniversary of independence on February 17.

This past year has been one of great milestones for Kosovo, including the end of Kosovo’s supervised independence, membership of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, and progress in the dialogue with Serbia to normalize relations. The United States remains firmly committed to supporting an independent, sovereign, and multiethnic Kosovo. I congratulate Kosovo’s [mafia] leaders for their dedication to building stronger democratic institutions, advancing new economic opportunities, promoting the rule of law, and reinforcing Kosovo’s European integration path. Continued work in these areas serves to secure lasting regional stability and prosperity for your country.

As you celebrate this special day, know that the United States stands with Kosovo as a partner and friend. I congratulate all the people of Kosovo on this holiday and wish you great success in the year to come.

Now, what one can deduce from a guy who says he’s your friend and then tells your enemy he’s also his friend, is that this guy is nobody’s friend.

The accolades for “multi-ethnic” Kosovo “democracy” continued on Feb. 22nd, with this bit of similar-sounding pre-packaged dribble from Reich Jr. — Hungary — lapping up and disseminating all that the Kosovo government representative had to say:

Kosovo, the youngest nation in Europe
A success story of democratic and multi-ethnic state building: Ambassador Shkendije Geci Sherifi in interview
(The Budapest Times, Feb. 22, By Christopher Maddock)

Kosovo’s National Day this week was only the fifth one since the declaration of independence on 17 February 2008, making it the continent’s newest state. Ambassador of Kosovo to Hungary, Shkendije Geci Sherifi brings us up to date on progress and on ties with Hungary

[Sherifi:]…As it is approaching the fifth year of statehood, the Republic of Kosovo is proving to be a success story of democratic and multi-ethnic state building. In this journey of success, Kosovo is not alone, it is widely supported by its allies, the US and the majority of EU states, as well as other friendly countries from all over the world. The number of international recognitions is approaching 100.

[Maddock:] Hungary quickly recognised the Republic of Kosovo in March 2008 while wishing to remain committed to developing bilateral relations with Serbia. Is there any awkwardness in the three-way relationship?

[Sherifi:] Hungary was among the first states to recognise the independent state of Kosovo while its foreign policy reflects a clear position on Kosovo: independence of Kosovo serves peace and long-term stability, regional development and other integration processes…Hungary is determined in developing bilateral relations with Serbia but with Kosovo as well, claiming that the recognition of the latter should not hinder its relationship with Serbia. [Just because I’ve cut off your limb doesn’t mean we can’t be friends!] Hungary, among others, as a neighbouring country of Serbia is fully committed to support Serbia’s path towards European integration, but at the same time it supports the integration of Kosovo and that of the Western Balkans countries in general. […]

That is, Serbia is to accept the adage “The friend of my enemy is my friend.”

Then last Friday — the next day after the puff above — came the same warning message to Albania that Washington had, from Reich Sr.:

Germany warns Albania against nationalist rhetoric (B92, Tanjug, Feb. 23)

TIRANA — Germany has warned Albanian leaders to refrain from using inflammatory nationalist rhetoric amid international concern over growing talk of the Greater Albania.

“No changes of borders are allowed in the Balkans,” [Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle during a visit to Tirana on Friday] said, urging politicians to refrain from escalating nationalist rhetoric during the campaign for parliamentary polls due in June.

“Conflicts in the Balkans have to be resolved through cooperation, rather than by powerful rhetoric,” German ARD Radio cited Westerwelle as saying. [Sure could have fooled us. As Liz, who circulated this item, notes: 1999 brought changes of borders through the powerful rhetoric of U.S./German-led NATO bombs laden with depleted uranium.]

“To see all the states of the region joining the European Union one day has to be a common goal,” he added.

Over the past few months, Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha and other officials have spoken about the creation of the Greater Albania, sparking concern among neighboring countries with Albanian minorities, said AFP.

The U.S. recently warned Tirana it was playing a “dangerous game”…Berisha irked his country’s neighbors when he spoke of “Albanians from all Albanian lands,” referring to ethnic Albanian populations in Greece, Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro.

Even as Berlin and Washington are suddenly given pause, 14 years into digging the hole, the media continue to run with the narrative originally sold, which has legs and a life of its own. On this point, THE PRIZE GOES TO NY DAILY NEWS for being the first mainstream U.S. media outlet to run a story — before officialdom has given the go-ahead for such transition — referring to Kosovo by its Albanian pronunciation, “Kosova.” The Bronx dateline helps explain the Albanian-English being used by the reporter who has to cover that beat, given that Bronx is the American extension of Greater Albania (recall: “ ‘policemen from Bern and Brussels and all the way to Bronx’ are well aware about the insurmountable difficulties when it comes to the attempts to investigate Albanian organized crime”):

Bronx
Local Kosova people mark 5th anniversary of independence from Serbia with weeklong festivities (Feb. 12)
About 10,000 Kosovars live in New York City, most of them in the Bronx

By Tanyanika Samuels / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS


Fireworks light the sky of Pristina, Kosovo, as people gathered to celebrate independence from Serbia in 2008.

Like many local Kosovars, Besim Malota can remember the day Kosovo officially declared independence from Serbia.

“I was watching TV all night, and talking with my friends back home,” he said of that fateful day, Feb. 17, 2008. “Then I finally went to Times Square. There were hundreds, maybe thousands of people there. Everybody was happy that day. After 96 years of occupation, we were finally free.”

Five years later, that joy has not dimmed as local Kosovars ready again to celebrate independence all week long with a variety of festivities in the Bronx and citywide.

“It’s a proud day for Kosova people and Albanian Americans throughout the world,” said Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj, the first Albanian-American elected to state office. He will be presenting a resolution to commemorate the anniversary in the state assembly Tuesday.

More than 10,000 Kosovo people live in the city, mostly in the Bronx.

Illyria Newspaper is hosting a formal dinner on Saturday in Manhattan; the Bronx non profit, Vatra Federation, will present a luncheon at Maestro’s in Morris Park on Sunday; and the local group, Bashkimi Kombetar, will host a formal dinner also at Maestro’s Sunday night.

The Republic of Kosovo, home to approximately 2 million people, is the youngest country in the Balkan region.

[It’s so young that it’s not even a country.]

Following World War II, Kosovo had been an autonomous province of Serbia in the former Republic of Yugoslavia. In the 1980s, Kosovo Albanians started calling for independence. Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic revoked Kosovo’s status in 1989 [I could have sworn it was the Albanian Yugoslav officials there, freaked out by the agenda of the racist-nationalist separatists in their midst] and launched brutal attacks against ethnic Albanians [gee, against random innocent civilians] in the late 1990s that resulted in massacres [by the KLA, she fails to mention] and displaced more than 750,000 people. [Back to the old numbers, I see.]

For more information visit albanianevents.com.

tsamuels@nydailynews.com

I made a futile attempt last year to contact The News’ resident KLA mouthpiece, Tanyanika Samuels, the last time she was suckered in by Albanian propaganda. This was the letter I sent her in March of last year, naturally to no response:

Dear Ms. Samuels,

I’ve been meaning to email you about the propaganda play you plugged in January. I understand that Americans know very little about Albanians, as we are not yet up to the intimate familiarity with them that Europe suffers from, and so you would have had no idea that the one-act play you covered, “Why Did You Kill My Parents?” was simply milking the American-spawned politically correct notion of the Albanian as victim in Kosovo. But for every Albanian child that lost his or her parents in that conflict — usually because at least one of them was fighting as KLA — I can show you at least one Serb or Roma child that lost one or both parents, or was killed together in a slaughter of the entire family by Albanians. Pre, post, and during the conflict. At some point, one must ask herself how it came to be that an area that was 60% Serb at the turn of the 20th Century came to be 10% Serb by 1999. Who was bullying whom out of the province? I have piles of documented substantiation in answer to that. The truth is what’s been diligently kept from the American public — even by papers such as The NY Times which had been reporting that truth throughout the 80s but didn’t dig those articles up when it came time for Bill Clinton to demonstrate ’strength’ and have his war.

And so for 13 years, since we bombed Christians on behalf of ostensibly oppressed Muslims in ’99, I’ve been trying to get the word out that the Serb-demonization we were treated to and which persists to this day was a necessary foundation being laid in order to accomplish our geopolitical goals in the Balkans…A similar stunt was played on the Czech people (demonization by governments and media) in 1938 regarding their “oppressed German minority” in the Sudetenland, when the great powers wanted to appease Hitler by giving him the Sudetenland. This is of course known as the infamous Munich surrender, and the Kosovo surrender has been a much bloodier and messier version of that — involving even more lies and cover-ups.

One such cover-up was the discovery by us in 1999 that there were as many Serb-filled mass graves as Albanian ones. In an area that was only 10% Serb, that revelation spoke volumes about the possible inversion of victim and villain, and risked removing our cause for war. And so an appointee named Clint Williamson hushed it up. Astonishingly, today he has been put in charge of the investigation of the Albanian-run murder-for-organs-scandal. Our KLA pals, now the “legitimate,” U.S.-backed government of Kosovo — and cheered as heroes by Albanians everywhere — were removing organs from Serbs, Albanians, Roma, and ‘retired’ prostitutes of varying nationalities, to help fund the cause and fill Hashim Thaci’s coffers (he is now prime minister); Williamson himself destroyed evidence at the scene of some of the holding pens.

Anyway, Tanyanika, I just wanted to send you the letter that I wrote to The News, albeit too late, in response to your write-up. My 13-year efforts are clearly not effective enough, except in earning me the expected “pro-Serb propagandist” title. (I’m an American Jew who didn’t even know what a Serb was until we were bombing them in ’99, but the course that this set me on has made me sympathetic to that vilified people who were never a threat to us — indeed they were our allies in WWI and II — and a people who were responding to attacks by those who today threaten us now too. Recall the Fort Dix plot involving four Albanians, as well as the Tampa plot by an Albanian which was disrupted in January, not to mention last year’s murder of two American servicemen in Frankfurt by a Kosovo Albanian. That’s to name just a few. And yet it’s still the Serbs we’re supposed to reserve our politically correct, entrenched animus toward. I don’t send you this to convert your thinking, but in the hopes that in the future you might have a more skeptical eye toward the usual wares being sold about the Yugoslav conflicts.

OK, so the letter follows below, in blog form since that’s all I could do after it was too late for publication. Forgive my (by now) exasperated and put-off tones. Yours, Julia

Instead of internalizing, or at least digesting, my letter, Tanyanika has now upped the ante, from “Kosovo” to “Kosova.”

Having said that NY Daily News is the first mainstream media outfit to use “Kosova,” I must point out at least one very early exception: writer Timothy Garton Ash, who as early as 2000 was using it, but explaining the context. Two choice excerpts from his articles:

American special forces work first covertly and then overtly with the Kosovo Liberation Army. We secure them effective independence from Serbia, under an international protectorate. As a result, one day there will either be a little state called Kosova (the Albanian spelling) or a greater Albania. …[B]ecause these people live in several neighbouring countries as well, giving them autonomy here would be destabilising there. Which it was, and will be. Our support for the Kosovo Liberation Army mightily encouraged the Albanian insurgency in neighbouring Macedonia.

– Timothy Garton Ash, The Guardian, March 26, 2003

…the place we should now, realistically, call Kosova…Malisevo, once the capital of the KLA and “the most dangerous place in Europe”…In the trashed bazaar of what used to be the Serbian city of Pec and is now the Albanian city of Pejë, children have painted the ruins with brightly colored frescoes. There’s a thriving market and even a couple of jewelers’ shops. Young girls stand in the mud, distributing calendars for Ramadan….

Thanks to us, Kosova ends with an a — the Albanian as opposed to the Serbian spelling. A stands for Albanian. It also, at the moment, stands for Anarchy. Take A for Albanian first. It’s now entirely clear that the NATO intervention has decisively resolved, in favor of the Albanians….This was neither the stated nor the real intention of Western policymakers.

Although most Serbs don’t believe it, the representatives of the so-called international community are genuine and even passionate in their desire to see a future for the Serbs in Kosova. [That may have been the case in 2000, but they’ve long since gotten with the Albanian program. See the six closing quotes here.] Dr. Klaus Reinhardt, the impressive German general who now commands the multilateral, NATO-led military force (KFOR), thumps his right fist into his left palm as he tells me that he will bring Serbs back to live again in their homes, even though those homes have been torched and plundered by Albanians since KFOR marched in… “Before and during the war, Kosovars kept assuring me that Kosova would not be like Albania: corrupt, anarchic, ruled by the gun and the gang. Increasingly, it is.

– Timothy Garton Ash, Hoover Institution, April 30, 2000

Closing with one of my favorite sentences about “Kosova”:

[I]t became fashionable for American and, alas, for some British politicians to say the word “Kosovo” in a funny way — thought to reflect local Albanian pronunciation — and to call the inhabitants “Kosovars”.

– BBC world affairs editor John Simpson, The Telegraph, Feb. 18, 2001

Further to my goes-without-saying point about the tortured language necessary in the course of navigating the confines of the current “official” stage of what we all know is expected to be a full and complete capitulation by Serbia on recognizing Kosovo statehood. I suppose what differentiates this particular case of the West’s “I know we said/promised/signed that, but we lied” is that at least they’re admitting it ahead of time. That is, giving a heads-up that, yeah, we’re going to demand that too:

Recognition of Kosovo “could be condition” for Serbia (B92, Beta, Tanjug, Feb. 13)

Recognition of Kosovo could be a precondition for Serbia’s EU integration even though it has not been officially mentioned yet, a French official has said.

French National Assembly’s Committee on Foreign Affairs Chairwoman Elisabeth Guigou said this after a meeting with Serbian Deputy Prime Minister Suzana Grubješić on Wednesday.

Grubješić said that Serbia was not asked to recognize Kosovo in order to get a date for the beginning of the EU accession negotiations and that EU officials had reiterated it several times.

However, the deputy PM added that…[several EU states] thought that Serbia would have to recognize the “reality” in Kosovo or to actually recognize its independence before it joined the EU.

“Of course, our response is that there is no recognition of Kosovo…” she stressed.

Some members of the National Assembly’s Committee on Foreign Affairs advocated Serbia’s EU membership.

According to the deputy PM, Serbia’s goal is not just to join the EU but to change and adjust to all standards and values of the Union. [God help us.]

“This is what we really advocate, what the previous Serbian government advocated and what the next government will advocate after us, because we want the European integration process to become irreversible,” Grubješić noted.

European Parliament (EP) President Martin Schultz said in early September that “mutual recognition of Belgrade and Priština” was a condition that the EP expected from Serbia in order to join the EU.

His statement was later denied by EU and Serbian officials. EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fule stressed that the “normalization of relations” was a condition, not the recognition. [One is parsed language for the other.]

He added that the EU had no “other plans” [for the moment!] and that all the conditions were well-known and listed in the December conclusions. […]

The chief cleric of Kosovo, Naim Ternava, is regarded as a radical Islamist who is supportive of Saudi Wahhabi ideology. In spite of Kosovo’s large Muslim population, many Muslim countries — including the majority of Arab League countries — have yet to recognize Kosovo as an independent state [because of the West’s hand in it]. As the “Southeast Europe Times” observes, Kosovo’s foreign policy toward the Arab world has recently begun to emphasize Kosovo’s Islamic character, as a means to gain support and improve bilateral relations.

– Alex Carpenter, of Demand Media, in an otherwise strange little MSM compilation titled “Islam & Kosovo,” Feb. 9, 2013

******UPDATE******

I had just posted this with virtually no comment, as it speaks for itself. But it occurs to me to emphasize this point: How entrenched was the Wahhabi movement in Bosnia before Western intervention? Answer: It wasn’t. Our strategy – duplicated in Kosovo—of “helping them so they won’t turn to the radicals” opened the floodgates. And they turned to the radicals anyway.

******

Sent by Nikola, who quipped: “This is why I think Republika Srpska needs to ask Israel to station troops throughout the Republic.”

Bosnian extremist wants to tax non-Muslims (B92, Tanjug, Feb. 18)

SARAJEVO — A Bosnian Wahhabi leader was heard calling for a ten-percent tax to be introduced for Serbs and Croats in that country - modeled after Ottoman practices.


Husein Bosnić, aka Bilal (image made from YouTube video)

A video was posted on YouTube showing Bužim-based Husein Bosnić, aka Bilal, advocating the type of tax imposed in medieval times on Serbs by the Turks who had invaded and occupied their land.

Bosnić, described as “one of the most popular preachers within the Wahhabi movement”, in his sermon, or “hutba”, told his followers that they “should not touch the honor or spill the blood of Serbs and Croats” - but only if those Christian nations were “under the framework of Islam”.

This Wahabi leader who was last year arrested on charges of terrorism and later released from custody, was further heard stating in the video:

“Their obligations toward the privileges that they have in our society are only to be loyal and to, once a year, if they can, set aside the amount that the khalifa determines, just as the Ottomans determined for Serbs - ten percent.”

He also said that “rich people” should give ten percent of their property once a year in order to be “left alone - nobody would touch them and nobody would mobilize them”.

At the end of the 44-minute “hutba”, Bosnić sent his message that “Islam will enter each home”.

Banja Luka-based daily Nezavisne Novine is quoting Duška Majkić, chairwoman of the Joint Commission on Defense and Security of the Parliament of Bosnia-Herzegovina, who said that “as far as security experts are concerned, this is all completely clear”:

“The Wahhabis do not respect this system, this state. What he said represents a violation of the Constitution and laws of this country. The police should have already investigated what is happening in those typical communities where they (Wahhabis) live, and if nothing was happening there, then the public could have its peace of mind. However, too many pieces of information are saying that caution is in order.”

Security experts commented on the video to say that the Wahhabis aim to “adjust the society to a possible lack of freedom that it will have to live in”.

“To be a Muslim of the Bilal Bosnić’s kind means to live according a calendar that is 700 years behind. What he said was a menacing message, which brings down the country’s constitutional order, but it also advocates in favor of a religious state and discrimination against non-Muslims,” terrorism expert Dževad Galijašević was quoted as saying.

Bosnić is no stranger to controversial and threatening “hutbas”. The media in Bosnia are quoting one of his earlier statements: “Know it, it has only started to bleed and it will not stop, Allah knows, until the victory of Islam arrives. That means that we must all mobilize and stand in defense of Islam.”

******UPDATE AT BOTTOM******

I just had to excerpt the following article, published by a military outfit called DVIDS, Defense Video and Imagery Distribution System. Note the passive tense being used in the first half of the item, making it unclear who is doing what to whom.

On one hand, it’s not as nasty as the constant “Serbs did this to Albanians, then Serbs did that to Albanians.” On the other hand, I suspect that the soldier who wrote the article doesn’t really have a clue as to who was supposed to have done what to whom, which is why she just plops down a mish-mosh of generalized chronology. It’s maddening and relieving at the same time. Either way, I really should charge for these writing lessons:

Refugee, now US soldier returns home (DVIDS, Feb. 7)

121st Public Affairs Detachment

Story by Sgt. Angela Parady (Indeed.)


U.S. Army Soldiers with the Multinational Battle Group East secure the area as other Kosovo Force soldiers remove concrete barricades from the Pristina-Raska road near Rudare, Serbia, Jan. 31, 2013…(U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Angela Parady/Released)

GIJLANE [sic], Kosovo - As a 10-year old girl Yllka Cana went to school every day where she and her family lived. Like many in Livic, a village outside Gjilane, Kosovo she and her friends spent the summer of 1999 playing games and being kids. While tensions mounted all around Kosovo, they never thought their lives would be turned upside down. As the situation continued to deteriorate and violence escalated, Cana and her friends were not allowed to begin their fourth grade year.

No elaboration here. She just drops it and moves on. Such are our military “writers,” a reflection of the level of thinking involved, or allowed.

In the 1980s, opposition to sovereignty of Yugoslavia caused rioting in Pristina. [Opposition by whom? Rioting by whom? We know the answers, of course. Opposition by Albanians to being under Yugoslav sovereignty (not “sovereignty of Yugoslavia”). As for “opposition caused rioting,” now there’s another interesting Romper-Room-level sentence. The pot-stirrers incited race riots by the Albanian masses of Kosovo. Ibrahim Rugova, leader of Kosovo Albanians, initially advocated non-violent resistance. As tensions mounted, the opposition evolved into a separatist movement, and the Kosovo Liberation Army took a different stance to the resistance. [I think she meant to use the word “approach,” not “stance.”]

The KLA launched a guerrilla war that featured regular attacks on Yugoslav security forces. In spring of 1998, the Yugoslav military partnered with Serbian police to fight the separatists. In the months that followed, thousands of civilians were killed and more fled their homes. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees estimated that 460,000 people had been displaced in the year prior to NATO’s involvement in March 1999.

Thousands of “civilians” were killed? She’s still on that? We’re at least a few years into being allowed to acknowledge that the people dying, at least on the Albanian side, were KLA fighters (plus a few hundred KLA-slaughtered civilians). And that’s not to mention the mass graves of Serbs that Bill Clinton’s guy John Clint Williamson was finding but kept mum about. But at least she leaves the reader guessing, using “thousands of civilians were killed,” rather than “thousands of Albanian civilians were killed,” and again the passive tense for “460,000 people had been displaced,” rather than saying “Serbs” displaced “460,000 Albanian people.” While doing it this way is bad writing, the “good writing” we’re used to would mean including more of the recycled, inverted garbage we’re used to.

UN reports estimate that nearly 40,000 Albanians fled or were expelled from Kosovo between March 1998 and the end of April 1999. [NOTE the subtle adjustment here, as if the public had been given to understand all along that plenty of Albanians fled the fighting, as opposed to what we were really told ad nauseum: that they were victims of systematic expulsion, a.k.a. ethnic cleansing.] Most of the refugees went to Albania, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, or Montenegro. Thousands more were driven out by intimidation, attacks and a wave of crime after the conflict as NATO’s Kosovo Force struggled to restore order in the province.

Here she’s slapped together two or three things. Intimidation of whom, by whom? We know the answer: intimidation of Albanians, by the KLA (though if this is what she means, or doesn’t mean to mean, then it’s a first that it’s mentioned by an official organ). But by the time you get past the first phrase, you realize she’s now talking about Serbs being driven out, intimidated and attacked after the official end of the war.

Fourteen years later, Cana, who had relocated to Allentown, Pa., early in 2000, is sitting in the principal’s office at the very school she attended in Livic. She is now a first lieutenant in the U.S. Army, deployed as part of KFOR.

BEAUTIFUL!

“The local shops closed” said Cana, remembering that part of her childhood. “All that could be heard was shots and the ground shaking from bombs. It all happened very fast.”

For their safety, Cana, her mother, three sisters and two brothers went to Camp Stankovec, a refugee camp in FYROM. Her dad stayed behind to work with KFOR at Camp Monteith, rejoining them in 2003 in Pennsylvania.

As Cana overcame the odds in America, she received her education, going on to study international relations and political science at Lehigh University, in Bethlehem, Pa. There she was part of the Reserve Officer Training Corps. She always remembered the American soldiers she met in 1999. They were superheroes to her.

When her first deployment happened to be to the very place she left all those years ago, it was almost a surreal experience.

“I came because I thought about all the soldiers that have deployed here and risked their lives to save mine, soldiers that left their families to make a difference, and now it’s my turn. I had to do it, and I will continue to do it no matter where in the world.”

Cana brought Sgt. Maj. Timothy Griffith to visit the town she grew up in. They visited her house, and her elementary school. He said that he believes that no matter where you are, education is most important.

“Without education, people are taught by word of mouth. They believe what they are told, rather than going out and validating information. If they are able to read and write, then you can direct them to sources that educate them, they can find sources of information and they don’t have to just believe what they are told.”

Could this be a cryptic reference to the fact that for a century Albanian children have been taught to hate Serbs? By their parents, uncles, grandparents and teachers. Which would explain why Season 10 “American Idol” contestant Melinda Ademi repeated on national TV what her family told her: that “Serbia wanted to get rid of all the other cultures”?

Cana tried to hide her squeals of excitement, as she walked into the same classrooms she had sat in 14 years ago, and saw teachers she had had all those years ago. With Griffith, they talked to the new principal and the teachers to see how the officers at Camp Bondsteel could help this school.

“We can’t do the big stuff, the construction and what not, but I can focus on the smaller stuff,” said Griffith, who has been with South Carolina’s 218th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade for the last 31 years. “The science teacher said it would make his class much better if he had microscopes. The art teacher had limited brushes, small amounts of water colors, and the kids are very talented. It doesn’t seem like much, but when these are in limited supply, it’s very much appreciated.”

Griffith and other senior officers don’t always get the chance to be a part of the community. They donated their own money to purchase microscopes, art supplies, warm gloves and hats, and smaller school supplies. They took the items back to Cana’s school, where the students and facility were very appreciative of the effort. [Did the writer mean facility, or faculty?]

“As a senior leader, I am very busy. I get pulled from all directions, and I am just happy to be able to do this,” said Griffith. “Not only are we helping out the local community, but we are also showing our junior NCO’s, our junior officers that senior people care, too.

Care about Albanian children, not Serbian ones. Those would be the ones who, even if they had the money for such materials, would have a hard time procuring them safely.

Cana agreed. Besides doing her work as an intelligence analyst, working with the children is the first reason she wanted to be a U.S. soldier. Sitting next to the man who taught her first through third grade, Cana laughs as she looks through old photographs and grade logs. She laughs as she explains that the numbers written are equal to an A or B in the American school system. She laughs, as her teacher tells her how she loved to learn and always wanted to do more. [What fun time they’re having in ethnically pure Kosovo.]

Cana’s face blushed at the praise of her teacher, a man she says taught her so much, lessons she has taken with her through her travels. The value of kindness, of having compassion and gratitude for the life you have lived is best reflected in helping others. “Knowing that a great impact can be made on others’ lives, through simple actions, makes the work worthwhile,” said Cana. “Giving to the community provides a rewarding sense of pride. Each act of kindness and help contributes towards a brighter future for all.”

Can anyone else see the 800-pound gorilla in the room?

Nezir Jahija, Cana’s teacher, beamed with pride at the young woman sitting beside him.

“I am very proud of Yllka,” he said. “I knew that she would be successful by how hard she worked here. Now, she has decided to join the U.S. Army, which is the world’s best, most powerful army, with values that are unlike any other.”

The students here are very appreciative of what the soldiers have done, and the difference they have made here in Kosovo.

And that’s what it’s all about. That they like us. That they really, really like us. Now brace yourselves for oncoming cavities:

“The students are a younger generation and many were not alive during the conflict,” said Jahija. “The older generation, teachers, older students, we experienced it, we know the difference the army has made in Kosovo. The older generation does a really good job of telling the younger so that they can know the history of what happened here, and see the effort KFOR put into Kosovo. It is our responsibility to teach the students so they are aware of the history of their country.”

Hearing what KFOR does is one thing. Interacting with soldiers first hand is an experience for these students.

“Just knowing that KFOR is in their country, making a difference and trying to help people is one thing, seeing it in action is different,” said Jahija. “ For the students here, the visit will leave a lasting impression. When they can physically see the care and concern the Americans have for the people, it makes a huge difference. It goes from being something they believe is happening, to something they have concrete evidence of.”

Cana’s visit not only allows these students to interact with the soldiers they hear about every day, but gives them hope. She shows these students what is possible for a child who faced challenges and had to leave her home, said Jahija. Cana also helps to override the common tradition that women should stay within the home. As a soldier in the U.S. military, a native of Kosovo and a strong role model, she left a young, scared girl, only to return a strong and determined woman. Her return is not only felt in the school, but in the houses of the children, and in the community. […]

Well at least there’s that.

******UPDATE******

I just wanted to add that, overall, the tone and even the content of the above piece smells of pure desperation. It’s bad enough they need to resort to “local girl makes good” stories, but notice how removed the “facts” are from the mainstream propaganda. No longer “800,000 Albanians ethnically cleansed” (now “460,000″), or “10,000 Albanian civilians killed” (now “thousands”). And, as previously noted, everything is neatly fudged so as to be plausibly denied when criticized. It’s almost as if it were calculated to feed on the “everybody knows” conventional wisdom, without actually saying anything that might catch fire if exposed to direct sunlight.

******UPDATE AT BOTTOM******

I hadn’t realized that “Dr.” Srdja Pavlovic, self-loathing and unadmitted Serb, was part of the “international expert team” of that Canadian “genocide research” outfit run by Bosnian Muslims. I’m wondering if that happened before, or after, he sided with the institute in having another professor kicked out of Canada. But it helps explain his views and, vice versa, his views explain the affiliation. I guess I wasted time and cyberspace in 2011 responding to this vested individual. Anyway, I found out that additional detail about Pavlovic from this item that Liz circulated last week, highlighting the following paragraph from Pavlovic’s response to Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Dr. Simon Samuels thanking the Montenegrin government for its stance on religious freedoms:

Remarks: Meeting Samuels and Djukanović
Institute for Research of Genocide, Canada 14/02/2013

Under the premiership of Milo Djukanović (multi-term prime minister since 1990) the government of Montenegro had preached tolerance while it often practiced and/or tolerated extremism, nationalism, chauvinism, and the hatred of the unwanted other. Djukanović’s government had failed to protect the citizens of Montenegro of Islamic faith when they were molested, tortured, and ethnically cleansed in the early 1990s by various paramilitary units. The role played by the Montenegrin police forces in those crimes is yet to be properly assessed. Moreover, it was the government of Milo Djukanović that ordered its police forces to locate, arrest, and hand over civilian refugees from Bosnia to Radovan Karadžić’s killers. A singular focus on one specific issue, such as the government’s attitude toward the Jewish community in Montenegro does not compensate for the lack of awareness of a historical record. It, however, disregards the large chunk of recent history that represents an unpleasant burden for the Montenegrin government and its multi-term prime minister. Those are my reasons for objecting to your expressing the gratitude to the Montenegrin government in this specific way.

Remarks following the meeting between Dr. Simon Samuels and the Prime Minister of Montenegro, Milo Djukanović


Dr. Srđa Pavlović teaches modern Balkan history at the University of Alberta. [God help us.] His work focuses on nationalism and identity construction. [God help us.] Also Dr. Srđa Pavlović is the Member of the International Expert Team of the Institute for Research Genocide, Canada.

So, to waste a little more time and cyberspace, let me point out that, aside from Pavlovic discrediting himself with his implication that “civilians” were being “killed” by Karadzic’s forces, as usual we encounter a contradiction which nonetheless results in no reassessment of the narrative. Isn’t there a chance that, if a government treats Jews well before, during and after wartime, that the things it’s being accused of doing to Muslims aren’t all they’re cracked up to be? While Serbia’s and Montenegro’s record on Jews — including during the 90s wars — was good, Croatia’s, Albanian Kosovo’s and Bosnia’s were not. And yet we’re supposed to believe that the Muslims and Croatians were the abused rather than the abusers. Similarly, the corollary: Isn’t it possible that it was something real that Serbia and Montenegro were responding to, given — as an indicator — the anti-Jewish climates that were bubbling up in Croatia and Bosnia? Especially since, historically, anti-Jewish developments and anti-Serb developments are mutual harbingers of each other? Isn’t it possible that the Yugoslav republics that were going in an anti-Jewish direction were not the underdogs, but — as in virtually every other case in history — the aggressors?

Djukanovic’s reprimand is part of a dark trend on another level too. We’re living in a time when nations that are good to Jews are scolded for bad treatment of Muslims. Muslims, who want to see Jews gone. It doesn’t take a visionary to see where this is going, and how it’ll end. Again. Governments and nations will fall in politically correct line and protect the Jew-haters, by way of the false projection of “discrimination” against Muslims.

I wasn’t going to read the rest of Pavlovic’s letter to Samuels, but I made myself do it, and stumbled upon this additional illuminating paragraph by Pavlovic. It certainly lends strength to any temptation to dismiss him:

The second issue has to do with the invitations you extended to Milo Djukanović to speak at the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles…

Since his first day in office (elected to the post of prime minister in 1989) Djukanović called on all the patriots to rally around the Yugoslav Army and protect the motherland form the predatory Croatian neighbour. [Yeah, and?] While justifying the participation of Montenegro in the war of Yugoslav dissolution, [as supposed to virtuously standing idly by or, better, joining the dark side?] Djukanović also had harsh words for anti-war activists. He stressed that “one cannot wave an olive branch while the Serbian people in Croatia are being slaughtered, massacred, raped,” and declared that the aim of the [war] was “to liberate the oppressed Serbian population from under the fascist terror of the Croatian authorities.” [Why is that a punch line when Serbs are being abused, but reverential when he’s writing about Muslims being abused, and Serbia being the fascist terror?] He famously declared that because of his dislike of the Croatian chequered flag, he stopped playing the game of chess, and promised to the people of Montenegro that time had come to “draw the demarcation lines vis-à-vis the Croats once and for all.”

This gives me a new found respect for Djukanovic, though by now he’s become just another Washington puppet purchase. Pavlovic appears to be a member of the bleeding-heart cliche that doesn’t believe there is anything worth defending and so war is never justified, even when it’s being imposed on you by Croatian clerical-fascists, Bosnian Muslims with a fundamentalist leader, or domestic terrorists ambushing officials, police and civilians in Kosovo. And, of course, the more obvious point: He’s defending Croatia and its fascist flag. This guy has made it all too easy to dismiss him wholesale. And the cherry on top:

One further wonders what some of the previous distinguished speakers from that stage would say to the invitation being extended to Milo Djukanović? I would like to think (call me naïve and idealistic) that Havel, if he were still with us, might object to it. I most certainly do.

The Czech president he picks as a beacon of virtue is this one:

In a speech to the Canadian Parliament, Czech leader Vaclav Havel praised the Yugoslav war as “an important precedent for the future,” saying that “state sovereignty must inevitably dissolve” and nation-states will be transformed into “civil administrative units.”

Which would seem to contradict Pavlovic’s (supposed) anti-war stance. Perhaps, since there’s nothing on the earth worth defending, only defensive wars are never justified, but aggressive wars are OK?

******UPDATE******

Pavlovic’s characterization of Djukanovic also underscores another theme that we keep revisiting: The fact that Pavlovic and the genocidaires are giving Djukanovic a hard time, even though he has severed Montenegro from Serbia; imposed a “Montenegrian” nation using Ustasha templates* (and Croatian linguists who codified his “Montenegrin language”); and empowered** the KLA and “Bosniaks”, just goes to show that one can NEVER please these totalitarians, no matter what.

* During WWII, there was a Montenegrin Ustasha sympathizer named Sekula Drljevic, who basically wrote reams of propaganda about how Montenegrins are actually a lost tribe of Catholic Croats, and how the evil Schismatic Serbs stole their land, faith and culture, etc. It was complete rubbish, of course, but it served Pavelic and Hitler nicely. So when the time came for Djukanovic and his cronies to create a “Montenegrin identity” separate from Serbs — on orders from the U.S., which has bankrolled him at least since 1998 — they decided not to reinvent the wheel, and simply recycled Drljevic’s drivel. Pavlovic has been doing the same thing.

** For Montenegro’s 2006 independence referendum, the EU mission had said the separatists needed 55% of the vote, so they got precisely that. By striking Montenegrins residing in Serbia from voter rolls; by flying in Albanians from New York; by getting Albanian, “Bosniak” and “Croat” (the coastal Catholics classified as “Croats” under Tito) votes; and finally by buying votes outright. Two years later Djukanovic recognized Kosovo statehood and has the most cordial relations with Thaci the Thug.

******FURTHER UPDATE******

I’d written the above update on Feb 19th and today, Feb. 20th, I see that in a Feb. 14th email from Liz, she informs me that Pavlovic is in fact an admirer of Sekula Drljevic. To repeat, Drljevic was a WWII fascist Ustasha sympathizer and Montenegrin separatist. So let’s underscore the fact that Jewish leaders should be warned to know such things, and to be very wary when Bosniaks and their sympathizers try to involve Simon Wiesenthal Center or any other Jewish organizations as expert advisers or sympathizers. Indeed, Dr. Samuels should have a sense of whom such a letter comes from, and dismiss it forthwith.

Just for the sake of having a snapshot of the current stage Serbia is pushed toward in terms of Kosovo recognition as the EU/US “assurances” continue that recognition is “not” a condition of Serbia’s EU membership, I’m excerpting a B92 report about the meeting last week between Serbian president Tomislav Nikolic and Kosovo “president” Atifete Jahjaga. One certainly sympathizes with a president struggling to hold on to his land by whatever meager means are left to him, in this case by clinging to the already stretched semantics that dance around and draw out the country’s last gasp.

Nikolić, Jahjaga, Ashton meet in Brussels (B92, Feb. 6)

…Nikolić spoke for B92 in Brussels shortly after a 50-minute meeting he held with Jahjaga and EU’s Catherine Ashton, who acted as mediator.

“As part of the dialogue that I support, two months ago I suggested that (Kosovo) President Jahjaga and I meet. Unfortunately, Mrs. Jahjaga insisted - along with a textbook story about human rights - that two independent states should cooperate,” the president said.

“I said that if she continues to insist that Kosovo is an independent state, the dialogue will not be able to move toward moving a joint solution,” Nikolić added. “…The meeting can be appraised as useful, in terms of getting acquainted with one another, but the problem is that there were no common topics that could be discussed and for which solutions could be found.”

The president stressed that during the meeting today, he “moved within the scope of the [Serbian parliament’s Kosovo] Resolution”:

“Clearly, everyone who is talking with our representatives is insisting that it (Kosovo) is about an independent state, and that cannot pass.”

Asked to comment on the speculation that the meeting was “the last step toward (Serbia’s) recognition” of Kosovo, Nikolić said that the encounter was “certainly not motivated by our desire to recognize Kosovo, but rather to tone down the passions.”

“Serbia’s desire is completely clear - the last thing that I would do for as long as I Iive would be to agree to, to accept Kosovo as an independent state.”

Nikolić underscored that by the parliamentary resolution, Serbia recognizes the specific nature of the territory of Kosovo and Metohija with an independent judiciary, president, government and the asse, but there are also communities there, such as the Serb or the Roma community, and they should have a certain autonomous status within it.

The Serbian president underscored that during the meeting, he voiced all the stands contained in the Resolution adopted by the Serbian parliament.

He noted that this is the framework Belgrade’s negotiating team will not overstep in the continuation of the dialogue.

Nikolić stated that this is a good start because the book of agreements has been opened, but it is uncertain just how long the process would last.

“After all, this is not so important. It is better for the talks to last longer and yield a solution eventually,” he said and added that it would be difficult to reach an agreement if Priština’s stand about its independence remains firm and unchanged although it is not recognized by the UN.

Nikolić said that without Serbia’s consent, there can be no independence for Kosovo and Metohija for as long as the UN exists in their current form, adding that he does not see why authorities would be unwilling to discuss another solution which would improve living conditions both in Serbia and in the Balkans as a whole.

“There is no other solution save for the agreement and if you read the Resolution of the Serbian National Assembly, you will realise that Serbia offered the solution according to which Kosovo and Metohija would be able to function and develop almost as an independent state, but no country can be expected to recognise the independence of any of its parts without asking their citizens first,” Nikolić said.

He added that everyone should bear in mind that there is a number of countries which have not recognized Kosovo and Metohija independence because they are aware it would open problems in their own territory.

According to Nikolić, during their separate meeting Ashton “did not voice any remark which could serve as grounds for doubt that the European Commission (EC) report would be positive”.

Nikolić expressed his optimism and added that in his view, the fact that Serbia wants to conduct talks with ethnic Albanians and is doing so is positive for the country.

“EU membership is our primary goal and we will do all a country and a nation with their pride can do,” Nikolić said.

Ahead of the meeting, Jahjaga briefly addresse[d] reporters in passing to say that she would talk with Nikolić as the president of “a sovereign, independent state”.

“We are equal here. This is the opening of a new chapter in our road of Euro-Atlantic integrations,” said Jahjaga.

“We are now tackling the issue of northern Kosovo and the coming weeks will be critical,” [Ashton] said. [Is that a deadline for a non-violent solution and otherwise it’ll be NATO guns?]

Atifete Jahjaga stated after the meeting with Tomislav Nikolić on Wednesday that this was “the first meeting between presidents of two independent and sovereign countries”. [She doth protest too much.]

“Our goal is to implement what is written in our document (parliament’s resolution on Kosovo) because it is taking care of Albanians’ interests but it thoroughly protects the Serb community as well,” [Foreign Minister Ivan Mrkic] noted.

“I truly believe we have a very good chance to get a date for the start of the EU negotiations and that it has rarely been this good,” Mrkić stressed.

Below we have just a random example of a straight-faced expert weighing in on Serbia’s outlook, as if not farcically navigating the confines of the allowable language of the current framework of promises/lies that one has to work within:

“Serbia can join EU without recognizing Kosovo” (B92, Feb. 10)

NOVI SAD — Graz-based Center for South-East European Studies Director Florian Bieber says it is “quite realistic” for Serbia to join the EU without recognizing Kosovo.

“If Serbia finds a way to cooperate, to normalize relations with Kosovo, I do not see that an official recognition is a condition, that Belgrade needs to send an ambassador to Priština and vice versa,“ he stressed.

Not today, but next week…?

“Of course, that can be an official stance of the EU some day but for now there is enough room to find another solution that would include normalization but not recognition,” Bieber stressed.

“For now,” indeed.

He told Novi Sad-based daily Dnevnik that a meeting between Serbian and Kosovo Presidents Tomislav Nikolić and Atifete Jahjaga was a “historic” meeting and a new step forward in the Belgrade-Priština relations and another proof that steps toward normalization of relations were being made.

That is, steps toward recognition.

According to Bieber, a precondition for the success in the normalization of relations between Serbia and Kosovo is an EU offer for both sides that will include speeding up of Serbia’s EU accession and some economic offers.

Imagine the thought: that Serbia is allowed to “precondition” its foreign masters, and the latter will actually feel obliged to hold up its end of the bargain and “speed up” things for Serbia if Serbia jumps through every new hoop.]

He said that the two sides were moving toward some kind of the so-called Ahtisaari Plus Plan when it comes to northern Kosovo.

“I think some sort of partition is not acceptable to the EU and Kosovo [no mention that this option used to be on the table] but autonomy for northern Kosovo which would to an extent legalize the existing situation is. In that sense, the north will certainly be closely connected with Serbia,” Bieber noted.

Again, today autonomy is on the table (though probably not one that would legalize the existing situation). But aside from the likelihood of that too eventually going the way of every other inch that had been dangled before the Serbs then taken away when they complied with that day’s demand, how realistic is it to think the northern Serbs will be allowed to live in peace, autonomously or not, in a region under Albanian rule?

Are we in an opera or something — where the abuser stabs his sweetheart in the end? Oh wait, the abuser in this case has already done that a few hundred times. That means he’ll really outdo himself when we get to the finale.

Extra charming that the words below were delivered by mummy John Kerry, whose 2004 campaign was financed by KLA Serb-killers, also seen laughing it up at a Kerry fundraiser in 2003.

Forwarded by Aleksandra Rebic, an American Serb who somehow musters the decency to still talk about the position of U.S. Secretary of State as if it’s something that’s above toe cheese, which it isn’t.

SERBIA’S NATIONAL DAY

Press Statement
John Kerry
Secretary of State
Washington, DC
February 14, 2013

On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I am delighted to congratulate the people of Serbia as you celebrate your National Day this February 15.

The United States is proud of our many years as partners and friends. [If you consider a Kevorkian figure in your suicidal life a friend.] We remain committed to helping Serbia strengthen its multi-ethnic society [What??? How about helping its mono-ethnic neighbors “strengthen” their “multi-ethnic” societies?], its democratic institutions and rule of law [What???], and to achieving its goal of full membership in the European Union. We welcome Serbia’s efforts to work constructively with its neighbors to build a more stable region. We will support Serbia in each step of its European path, and look forward to a growing role for Serbia as a force for peace and prosperity.

On this special day, the United States stands beside you. [That’s actually terrifying.] To all the people of Serbia, I wish you a peaceful and prosperous future.

Liz, who circulated this item, noticed that this travel site correctly still refers to the “Serbian province of Kosovo.” In addition, Urosevac is still Urosevac, as opposed to the terrorist-named “Ferizaj.” And Pec is still Pec instead of Peja. It’s doubly interesting because it seems this page may have been prepared by Albanian-speakers in the diaspora. In addition, instead of pabulum like “Kosovo monastery” which the Eurotrash in Brussels have been diligently conditioning us to as part of the de-Serbification of the province, it very clearly says “Serbian Orthodox Christian” monastery.

No doubt the site will “get the memo” soon (as well as one informing them that the Decani monastery is closed to the public as of last week.) But for now, let’s just enjoy the moment. Especially since it won’t be long before we click on it again and find that not only is Kosovo no longer a “Serbian province,” but it’s not even Kosovo anymore, but Kosova. For now, the frog is still blissfully boiling on the way to that one.

Explore Mitrovica in Kosovo

Mitrovica in Komuna e Mitrovices with its 107,045 habitants is located in Kosovo - roughly 21 mi (or 34 km) North-West of Pristina, the seat of the government.

Local time in Mitrovica is 03:59 AM (Thursday). The local timezone is “Europe / Belgrade” with an UTC/GMT offset of 1 hour.

Kukës, Fushe-Arrez, Vucitrn, Verboc, Tetovo, Suva Reka, Staro Cikatovo, Skopje, Prizren, Pristina and Josanica are destinations relativly nearby and could be interesting to discover when around.

According to our records, there are 3 airports in the nearby. The closest airport is Prishtina International Airport with a distance of 23.8 mi (or 38.3 km) north-west of the centre of Mitrovica. Have a look at our dedicated picture album to get an idea of what this places is like. What’s it like right now? View our selection of of local online cameras. Need a few ideas for finding things to see and want to get to know more about this place? Check the related Mitrovica attractions page. The same applies for local and videos.

Mitrovica Gallery
Old photo of the house where I was born….

Banjica concentration camp: concentration camp in World War II, located in the eponymous suburb of Belgrade.Trial of the Major War Criminals Before the International Military Tribunal, Nuremberg by International Military Tribunal Contributor Hermann Göring International Military Tribunal 1947, page 283 It started as a center for holding hostages, but later included Jews, Serbian communists and captured partisans and Roma … [But, interestingly, no Albanians.]

Distance to Mitrovica: 25.6 mi South - Coordinates (Lat/Lng): 42.52, 20.92

Visoki Dečani monastery: “Visoki Dečani” (Serbian: Манастир Високи Дечани or “Manastir Visoki Dečani”) is a major Serb Orthodox Christian monastery in the southern Serbian province of Kosovo, 12 km south of the town of Peć. Its cathedral is the biggest medieval church in the Balkans which contains the largest preserved monument of Byzantine fresco-painting …
Distance to Mitrovica: 38.1 mi South-West - Coordinates (Lat/Lng): 42.55, 20.27

Camp Bondsteel: command in the UN-administered Serbian province of Kosovo. [Someone should tell the Bondsteel Bimbos that’s where they are.] Located near the town of Uroševac in the eastern part of the province, the base serves as the NATO headquarters for KFOR’s Multinational Task Force East (MNTF-E). The base is named after Vietnam War Medal of Honor recipient James L. Bondsteel …
Distance to Mitrovica: 40.7 mi South-East - Coordinates (Lat/Lng): 42.37, 21.25

Why is Russia the only one concerned about the Albanian prime minister’s call for unification of lands where there are a lot of Albanians? (Macedonia, southern Serbia, part of Greece, Montenegro and a snippet of Bulgaria, according to some maps.) He tries to backtrack using as a cover something like: “I meant unification under the EU umbrella.” That’s not what Albanians mean, and he knows it. The KLA will never rest. Terrorists don’t put down their weapons after a success.

The only border “change” Washington and EU oppose is the part of Kosovo that wants to remain with Serbia. But as for the big Kosovo severance and whatever Greater Albania is up to, that’s OK. Because we don’t talk back to Albanians.

Russia Opposes Changes to Balkan Borders (Balkan Insight, Jan. 30)

The Russian Foreign Minister has dismissed the Albanian Prime Minister’s call for an eventual unification of all Albanians in one state, saying too much blood has been spilled in the region already.

Sergei Lavrov said that any redrawing of borders in Europe is unacceptable, and that fully refers to the situation in the Balkans, “where much blood has been shed.

“No one would want to witness the recurrence of such events,” Lavrov said in Moscow on Tuesday after meeting his Macedonian counterpart, Nikola Poposki.

The Russian minister called on all European countries, including Albania, to strictly adhere to the Helsinki Final Act signed in 1975, which aimed to improve relations between the Communist bloc and the West and agreed on the permanence of postwar Europe’s borders.

He spoke in response to Albanian Prime Minister Sali Berisha’s earlier call for the creation an integrated Albanian state.

During the 2012 celebrations of the centenary of the Albanian state, Berisha referred to a number of areas outside modern Albania as historically Albanian, and referred to “the dream of Albanian unification”, though he later maintained he meant the union of all Albanians within the European Union.

Lavrov also expressed disappointment over the West’s muted reaction to recent reports of attacks on Serbian monuments in mainly Albanian Kosovo. “This is a dangerous trend,” Lavrov said.

Over 60 Serbian memorials have been vandalised lately in Kosovo, in apparent retaliation for Serbia’s removal of a monument erected to local ethnic Albanian fighters in the mainly ethnic Albanian south Serbia border area.

And we’re supposed to believe that the U.S. and Europe are against more blood being shed in the Balkans?

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