Poor Jose Manuel Valdez. He just became an American at a ceremony in Kosovo. That is, he became an American in the capital of un-American activities. In the seat of un-American behavior that’s nonetheless trumpeted as eminently American.

Jose, if there’s one place where no one should be proud to be an American, it’s Kosovo.

Proud to become an American

CAMP BONDSTEEL, Kosovo – Just days after America celebrated her 235th birthday, Pfc. Jose Manuel Valdez was sworn in as a citizen of the U.S. in a ceremony held at the U.S. Embassy in Pristina, July 7.

Valdez, an infantryman with the U.S. contingent of Kosovo Forces 14 rotation had been working on the administrative process to officially become a citizen for about 6 months and completed the interview and official ceremony while on a year-long deployment to Kosovo.

Dell echoed [Col. Michael D.] Schwartz[’s] remarks and the satisfaction and pleasure those in attendance were feeling on the occasion.

“You had a choice, a choice that you exercised to become an American,” said Dell. “We are all extremely proud of you; proud of your service, grateful for it, and very simply proud to call you an American.” […]

Jose, here’s what’s proud of you, and what you represent in Kosovo:

In 2004, every American staffer at the U.S. Embassy was invited to attend Haradinaj’s wedding — and, despite his links to organized crime and impending indictment on war crimes, they went. Most recently, the night after the raid on [Transport and Telecommunications Minister Fatmir] Limaj’s home and offices [in connection with a corruption probe], U.S. Ambassador to Kosovo Christopher Dell was seen laughing and chatting with the minister at a well-attended party in Pristina.

( “Thug Life,” Foreign Policy)

[A]mbassador to Kosovo, Christopher Dell, declined repeated requests for an interview, as did officials at the State Department in Washington. They also declined to respond to written questions.

Most people who spoke to GlobalPost about SHIK, its activities and its ties to the U.S. government spoke on condition of anonymity because they did not want to face repercussions.

( “Kosovo’s Mafia: Assassinations and intimidation,” Global Post)

And here the godfather of the godfathers issues a threat to his partners in crime:

Former Kosovo president Bedzet Pacoli said on Friday his successor Atifete Jahjaga, who was elected by parliament, was in fact handpicked by the US ambassador to Pristina Christopher Dell…He described how Dell pulled out an envelope at a meeting with prime minister Hashim Thaci, Pacoli and opposition leader Isa Mustafa with Jahjaga’s name and said she was the candidate. When Thaci and Mustafa heard the proposal, “they looked at each other in disbelief”, Pacoli said. “Both of them were perplexed, and it’s hard to describe their reaction by words,” he added.

Dell was “very nervous and sharp in his demand” and told the three leaders not to “underestimate” his proposal, because they could lose America as a friend.

( “New President Handpicked by Americans,” Adnkronos International)

US Ambassador to Pristina Christopher Dell’s hands-on involvement in selecting two new presidents for the country has been erased from his Wikipedia page by a computer registered to the State Department, Balkan Insight has discovered.

Dell had also found himself at the centre of controversy following Pacolli’s election to president. SMSs between Pacolli and his advisor, referencing the US Ambassador’s involvement in negotiations to secure a majority for the AKR man, appeared in various newspapers, leading to a barrage of complaints that the US was meddling in internal politics and jokes about how the president was being elected “by SMS”.

Wikipedia moderators were quick to remove the more bizarre claims, but, Balkan Insight found, it was an IP address registered to the US State Department which cleaned away all references to Dell’s involvement in the selection of both president[s].

The person also removed a link to a diplomatic cable written to Ambassador Dell and made public by Wikileaks.

( “State Department Cleans Dell’s Wiki Log of Controversial Material,” Balkan Insight)

(Notice that it’s not over anything illegal, immoral, ghastly, sick, murderous and sinister that the U.S. ambassador dangles the possibility of the criminal state losing U.S. support. But it’s over our protected gangsters not playing ball and doing as told. As I’ve written before, this will lead Albanians and other assorted criminal types to see us in a light of very low moral ground, making it easier in the long run to turn against us, for what else have we shown ourselves to be but the same gangster trash that is so expendable in that region.)

Jose, can you see by the dawn’s early light?

Not very well, I’m afraid.

May Jose become a better American than garbage like Christopher Dell.

(With thanks to Yakov Smirnoff for the earlier pun.)