Friday, March 17, 2006

More on the Balkans

Croatian President Franjo Tudjman
The Balkans' (not much) lesser evil

In 1995, Tudjman again showed his talent for limiting his brutality just enough to get away with it. That summer, he invaded the Krajina, the Serb area captured by Milosevic in 1991. The 200,000 Serb residents fled to Serbia rather than fight. Tudjman punctuated the arguably justified invasion with a vicious exclamation point. He had his troops burn down 70 percent of Serbian houses, passed laws to confiscate Serb property, and allowed gangs of Croat thugs to murder the few elderly Serbs who remained. "What he did after the invasion was inexcusable," says Peter Galbraith, then U.S. ambassador to Croatia.

Even so, Tudjman again restored himself to the West's (semi-) good graces by signing the Dayton Peace Accords and agreeing to let Serbs return to their burned homes. But he has not allowed them to return in fact. Only a handful of the 200,000 Serbs have come back to the Krajina. (He has also refused to extradite the Croats indicted for war crimes to the Hague, perhaps fearing they would implicate him.)

The War against Serbia: Illusion Versus Reality

In the Krajina region of Croatia, the United States tacitly accepted Croatia's ethnic cleansing of 300,000 Serbs because the killing weakened the Serb position in that country and in neighboring Bosnia. Because Turkey is a U.S. ally, the United States not only accepted the Turkish regime's brutal repression of the Kurdish minority (another conflict in which casualties have been much greater than those in Kosovo) but actively aided Ankara by helping apprehend the Kurdish leader Mohamad Ocalan.

Michael Kelly: A Perfectly Clintonian Doctrine

Finally, (4), it is at bottom a fraud. Note the use of the term "world community." There is no world community. The war against the Serbs in Kosovo was an exercise not of any global village but of the great powers, and the great powers pick and choose their moral causes. The great powers stood complacently by in the summer of 1995, when the Croats ethnically cleansed their turf in Bosnia of 300,000 Serbs, and they are standing by now, as the Kosovo Liberation Army and returning Albanian refugees rapidly cleanse Kosovo of 200,000 Serbs.

The emerging all-Albanian reality of Kosovo underscores the underlying fraud of the Clinton Doctrine, which is the idea that what the West is forging in the Balkans is a triumph for pluralism and democracy. It was a very good thing that the United States finally acted to stop the Serbs' slaughter in Kosovo, as it was a very good thing when it finally acted to stop the Serbs' slaughter in Bosnia. But it is nonsense to pretend that these accomplishments gave rise to a reversal of ethnic cleansing or anything like a pluralistic democracy.

Consider the reality of Bosnia-Herzegovina, as detailed in a searching article by Gordon N. Bardos in the April issue of the Harriman Review. As Bardos reports, four years and two missed deadlines for troop withdrawal after the Dayton Peace Accords, Bosnia is a protectorate of NATO divided into what Bardos calls three "ethnities" -- the Serbian entity of Republika Srpska, and a Croatian territory and a Bosnian territory that are uneasily federated under Dayton. Each is run by nationalist hard-liners backed up by ethnically pure military forces

U.S. gave green light to terrorists in Bosnia

Yugoslavia policy helped build base in Europe for Hezbollah, others

The Dutch government has released a report that details the alliance between the United States and the Islamic effort to help Bosnian Muslims. The report determined that the United States provided a green light to groups on the State Department list of terrorist organizations to operate in Bosnia. This included the Lebanese-based Hezbollah. For the European Union, the U.S. effort marks a stain that calls into question Washington's war on terrorism.

For nearly a decade, the Clinton administration helped Islamic insurgents aligned with Chechnya, Iran and Saudi Arabia destabilize the former Yugoslavia. The insurgents were allowed to bring weapons and explosives to Bosnia-Herzegovina and fight Serbs and their allies. The insurgents also were allowed to move further east to Kosovo.

The United States was helped by a range of Muslim countries – from Iran and Saudi Arabia to Turkey. In short, the Clinton administration thought that the stronger the Muslims in Bosnia, the weaker the Serbian hold over Yugoslavia.

Today, there are tens of thousands of Islamic insurgents throughout such countries as Bosnia, Croatia and Kosovo, and many of them are moving west to Austria, Hungary, Germany and Switzerland

A Massacre in Kosovo

A member of the United Nations police force murders his American colleagues.

ON APRIL 17, as reported in THE WEEKLY STANDARD, two American women and an American man were slain in Kosovo, and eleven people were injured when they came under armed attack by a Palestinian from Jordan. The killer was a member of the same body in which they served: the United Nations police force in the territory.

The male American, who died of his wounds, was Gary Weston, of Vienna, Illinois. The Palestinian, Sergeant Major Ahmed Mustafa Ibrahim Ali, was killed when members of the contingent in which the Americans were traveling returned fire.

In the days since the first reports of the crime were received, more details have emerged, which make what was already a scandal for the United Nations in Kosovo even more alarming. First and most disturbing is that the dead assailant, Ali, is being investigated for connections with Hamas, the Palestinian terror organization. Second is that the same Ali had visited the kingdom of Saudi Arabia, home of the Wahhabi Islamic sect that produced al Qaeda, only a month before he was sent to Kosovo in March


Because Kosovo media operates under heavy U.N. censorship, the whole truth about this atrocity may not be known for some time.

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