There was an interesting announcement recently that went almost entirely unnoticed in the Canadian media.
On June 17, Peter Szijjarto, foreign minister of Hungary’s centre-right government, made the startling declaration that his national security forces will erect a four-metre wall along the entire 175 kilometres of shared border with Serbia.
Szijjarto’s rationale for resorting to such a drastic measure results from a months-long flood of asylum seekers pouring into southern Hungary. While tens of thousands of these desperate illegal immigrants have been caught, detained and returned into Serbia, the vast majority have used the processing time for their asylum applications to simply disappear into other western European countries.
This, of course, explains why there is no public outcry from other members of the European Union over Hungary’s decision to fence out this wave of desperate humanity.
For impoverished Serbia, staunching the flow of these refugees at its northern border has generated the opposite reaction.
“I thought the Berlin Wall had fallen, but now new walls are being constructed,” stated Serbia’s foreign minister, Ivica Dacic, referring to the Cold War barrier that stood from 1961 until 1991.
“We are absolutely and fiercely against (Hungary’s) decision to build a fence.”
While the nationalities of those fleeing through Serbia into Hungary and beyond include Syrians, Somalis and even Afghans, the irony is that the vast majority of asylum seekers are ethnic Albanians from Kosovo.
The most recent exodus began in earnest in the fall of 2014, when the Serbian government relaxed travel restrictions on Albanians entering from the declared independent state of Kosovo. Serbia has never recognized Kosovo’s 2008 declaration of independence and still legally considers the region to be sovereign Serbian territory.
In 1999, Kosovo was ravaged by a brutal civil war between ethnic Albanian separatists and Serbian security forces. The root cause of the public discontent was a severely depressed economy, overpopulation and unemployment. The Albanian underworld was able use that unrest to ignite and impassion a wave of nationalist sentiment that soon boiled over into a full-scale armed insurgency.
That year was the 50th anniversary of NATO and, given the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, there was a strong desire for NATO leaders to prove that the alliance was still relevant. Thus, NATO threw its full weight behind the Albanian Kosovo rebels.
In the spring of 1999, NATO warplanes, including Canadian CF-18s, launched a 78-day bombing campaign — not just against Serbian military targets in the disputed territory of Kosovo but against civilian infrastructure and utilities throughout all of Serbia. With NATO combat forces, including Canadians, massed in Macedonia for a possible ground war, the Serbian government negotiated a ceasefire on June 10, 1999.
Under the negotiated terms of UN Resolution 1244, Kosovo was to remain the sovereign territory of Serbia after a brief military occupation by NATO troops. Serbian security forces were to resume control of Kosovo’s border crossings and provide protection for the numerous sacred Serbian religious sites and monasteries within the disputed territory.
Of course, that was never actually in the cards. NATO negotiators had never wanted to have ground troops fight their way through Kosovo’s forebodingly steep mountain passes. Therefore, they agreed to all Serbian demands, knowing full well that they would never honour the deal.
In February 2008, that duplicity was formalized when the United States hastily recognized Kosovo’s unilateral declaration of independence and strong-armed allies such as Canada into following suit.
However, the precedent of such declarations of territorial independence based upon ethnic regional majority has prevented many countries from recognizing Kosovo. For instance, Spain, with its Basque separatist movement, and Azerbaijan, with its claim over the region of Nagorno-Karabakh, cannot recognize a unilaterally declared independence.
With Russia using its veto to deny Kosovo membership in the UN and Spain, Slovakia, Greece and Cyprus doing likewise to keep it out of the European Union, Kosovo has remained in a strange quasi-limbo status on the international stage.
What matters most, however, is that at the end of the day, you cannot subsist on flags. Despite its declared independence, unemployment, poverty, corruption and widespread crime are driving a new flood of Albanian Kosovars to seek a better life — anywhere but in Kosovo.
The people of Ukraine who see their salvation in the form of a NATO intervention should take a good look at NATO’s “success” in Kosovo. Short-term military solutions do not solve long-term economic problems.
By Scott Taylor
Facts And Truth @ YouTube: “Remember why NATO spent 78-days bombing Yugoslavia in the spring of 1999? There was the ethnic cleansing. The atrocities. The refugees chased out of Kosovo by the Serb army. The mass graves. The heaps of bodies tossed into vats of sulphuric acid at the Trepca mines. NATO spokesman Jamie Shea said there were 100,000 Kosovo Albanian Muslims unaccounted for.
Problem is, none of it happened.”
Forensic report throws doubt on US/NATO claims of Racak “massacre”
By Richard Tyler
wsws.org, 12 February 2001
A forthcoming article by three Finnish pathologists throws further doubts upon official descriptions of a “massacre” in ...
What are the origins of the US role in the Balkans? Why was Albania of strategic importance for NATO? Why did US policy support Albania and Albanian separatists in the former Yugoslavia? Why did the US support Greater Albania in Kosovo and Western Macedonia?
The CIA and Greater Albania: The Origins of the US Role in the Balkans
By Carl K. Savich
Introduction: The Missing Link
Why did the US support the separatist and terrorist so-called Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA, or UCK in Shqip), which sought to create an ethnically pure Albanian Kosovo based on ethnicity? Why did the US sponsor a criminal and ...
Recent episodes of ethnic intolerance against the Serbian minority exacerbate conditions in a country which is increasingly an “Islamic island” in the heart of Europe.
Kosovo is once again the centre of attention in Orthodox Church circles. In addition to new instances of intolerance against the ethnic Serbian minority, recent actions taken by Russian Patriarch Kirill and Archimandrite Tikhon (Shevkunov), abbot of the Moscow monastery of Sretensky Stavropegic, have drawn attention.
Violence against Orthodox Serbs is growing: unsurprisingly, some of them speak openly of cultural genocide. Approximately one hundred and fifteen churches were destroyed or severely damaged during the Albanian attacks, and ...
Barack Obama's speech on Ukrainian crisis seems to have left the public confused as he claimed that Kosovo broke away from Serbia "after a referendum". But attentive listeners quickly pointed Obama's gaps in history - there was no referendum in Kosovo. Video here.
President Obama was speaking Wednesday at The Center for Fine Arts in the heart of Brussels, Belgium, and was telling the youth crowd mostly about Russian-Ukrainian conflict over the strategic Crimean Peninsula.
He lashed out at Russia for "violation of international law, its assault on Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity."
Obama recalled the conflict around Kosovo and NATO's involvement, making ...
“What we are really talking about is a humanitarian disaster precipitated by the cold political calculus of an autocratic leader who has pursued a political strategy against his own citizens,” said U.S. Gen. Wesley Clark, supreme allied commander in Europe.
Gen. Clark’s target was Slobodan Milosevic. Yet his words might have been used by another American general named Robert E. Lee, about another “autocratic leader” named Abraham Lincoln.
The day Clark made his statement bolstering the case for air strikes in Kosovo, the fall issue of Independent Review arrived. In a piece on Lincoln, “micromanager of the war effort,” scholar Thomas DiLorenzo ...
More than forty years later: The 5000 page Saville Commission Report into the 1972 Bloody Sunday massacre in Derry, Northern Ireland, while calling for compensation to the victims’ families, fails to identify who were the perpetrators, both within H.M government and the British Army.
“The North’s Public Prosecution Service (PPS) is continuing to scrutinise the Saville report to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to bring charges against British soldiers involved in Bloody Sunday on January 30th, 1972. While progress has been made on the issue of compensation there have been no substantial developments in relation to the possibility of British ...
The interest of European scholars, primarily German and Austrian, in research on Albanian ethnical origin rose gradually during the second half of the 19th century. Their interest in Albanian and Balkan studies came later in comparison with the study of other ethnic groups and regions in Europe. The reason was that Euro-centrism of the late 19th century and the early 20th century defined the Balkans and its nations as the territory and peoples of obscure identity. In contrast to the “real Europe”, the Balkans was seen as the “Orient”, not part of Europe at all, and above all it was ...
While all eyes have been on the U.S. presidential campaign, such foreign-policy hot spots as Syria, Iran and Pakistan, and the increasingly frosty relations between the United States and China, a simmering problem in the Balkans threatens to come to a boil. The most serious clashes to date involving angry Serb inhabitants of the northern portion of Kosovo and international Kosovo Force (KFOR) peacekeeping personnel erupted on November 28. Thirty German and Austrian soldiers were injured, some by small-arms fire and Molotov cocktails, when KFOR troops tried to remove roadblocks that Serb residents had erected. Those barricades have been the most ...
The conflict that raged throughout the former Yugoslavia was met by a wall of silence when it came to important issues. These important issues apply to America and the United Kingdom supporting Islamists in a brutal civil war in Bosnia and then installing a new nation by ignoring international law in Kosovo. Also, is it credible to believe that the vast majority of major news agencies and national governments did not know about thousands of Islamists in Europe who were sent to slit the throats and behead Orthodox Christians?
After all, if the reality of what really happened in Bosnia and ...
Michigan-based filmmaker Michael Moore makes the connection between Kosovo and the Columbine shooting in his Academy Award-winning documentary Bowling for Columbine (2002). Moore puts Kosovo in the context of a broader U.S. foreign policy agenda and a domestic culture of violence. Moore asks: “Are we a nation of gun nuts or are we just nuts?”
In the first scene, Moore walks into the North Country Bank in Michigan to open an account. He saw an ad in the newspaper that the bank would give out free guns to those who open accounts there. Moore walks into the bank and tells the ...
The group of suspected terrorists arrested near Pristina in July will go on trial charged with preparing terrorist acts - but not with attempting to poison the city's water supply.
Kreshnik Gashi, Labinot Leposhtica BIRN Pristina
Terror suspects on the lake case are escorted by the Kosovo police. Photo: BIRN
Six men arrested in Kosovo at a reservoir near the capital in July will shortly go on trial in connection with terrorist acts.
However, initial allegations that the men intended to poison the water supply for the city of Pristina - claims that provoked a media frenzy in the country - do not feature ...
Nestling in a wooded valley that its citizens laid their lives down to defend, the town of Kacanik in southern Kosovo is fiercely proud of its war dead.
Well-kept cemeteries include nearly 100 victims of Serb-led ethnic cleansing in 1999, while in the town centre, a statue clutching an RPG honours fallen members of Brigade 162 of the Kosovan Liberation Army.
But a decade and a half on from the war that brought about Kosovo's independence, there is rather less pride in Kacanik's new crop of warriors.
Infamous son: Lavdrim Muhaxheri, from Kacanik, in Syria
In the last three years, some 24 local menfolk ...
Twelve years ago, March 24th 1999, marks the commencement of NATO's aerial bombardment of Yugoslavia. The bombings which lasted for almost three months, were followed by the military invasion (under a bogus UN mandate) and illegal occupation of the province of Kosovo.
In the course of the last week, the so-called international community, backed by the UN Security Council has called for the bombing of Libya, a sovereign country, allegedly to protect the lives of civilians under the logo of "Responibility to Protect".
The covert operations, the military strategies applied in Libya not to mention the process of media disformation bear a canny ...
Destroyed Serbian Orthodox church complex in Kosovo in March 2004
The conflicts that engulfed the former Yugoslavia still remain unresolved in the political arena and open to Western political shenanigans and covert meddling from Turkey and Saudi Arabia in Bosnia and Kosovo. Orthodox Christianity faces many attacks and only a naïve individual would claim that America and the hands of Turkey and Saudi Arabia are clean.
America and other Western nations did little to stop Turkey invading Cyprus in 1974 and creating a de-facto nation and altering the demographics of northern Cyprus and using this area for military purposes.
Irrespective of the rights ...
The Balkan political environment is shaped-amongst other- by the existence of two political strains of Islam, the Wahhabis, related to the Saudis & Gulf states and the Muslim Brotherhood ones, related to the Turkish-Qatar axis.
In both cases networking developed under a series of upturns since the 1990’s and is inexorably related to wider events of interest such as the ongoing wars in the Middle East and the culminations in countries such as Turkey, Egypt but also EU , Western European ones; including direct security affairs.
Nowadays we are witnessing a massive buyout of land and corporations by mostly UAE, Kuwait and ...
NEW YORK – Members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) welcomed the announced resumption of dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina scheduled to take place on February 9 and 10 in Brussels, while expressing concern over the violence that broke out during the recent protests in Kosovo.
“With respect to the protests, let’s be clear: All citizens have the democratic right to protest, but violence is illegal and unacceptable. We condemn all acts of vandalism to public and private property and the intimidation of journalists and TV crews,” United States Ambassador to the United Nations David Pressman said during the debate ...
As Kosovo tries to stop its sons from going off to fight in Iraq and Syria, sympathy for their cause remains strong among some hardline Muslims.
Nektar Zogjani, Petrit Collaku and Nate Tabak
The calls stopped coming more than three months ago.
Even while fighting in Iraq and Syria for the militants of Islamic State, Musli Musliu still checked in with his family regularly. He used to post photos on Facebook, showing a beaming young man posing with his comrades. One even shows him in a sweet shop.
It was during one of those calls, in April, that he broke the news that ...
Noel Malcolm - Kosovo - A Short History
A history written with an attempt to support Albanian territorial claims in the Balkans
A Short History of Kosovo by Noel Malcolm is usually considered as one of the prime historical sources on the history of the province. In fact, this book is an example of the History with a political attitude because it is not by chance that Malcolm who attacks the "myths" of Serbian history is at the same time a president of the Anglo-Albanian Association and one of the strongest supporters of independence of Kosovo. Being far from an objective scientific ...
Photo album: Kosovo & Metochia in March 2010 (197 authentic photos)
Another NATO Intervention?
Less than a dozen years after NATO bombed Yugoslavia into pieces, detaching the province of Kosovo from Serbia, there are signs that the military alliance is gearing up for another victorious little “humanitarian war”, this time against Libya. The differences are, of course, enormous. But let’s look at some of the disturbing similarities.
A demonized leader
As “the new Hitler”, the man you love to hate and need to destroy, Slobodan Milosevic was a neophyte in 1999 compared to Muammar Qaddafi today. The media had less than a decade to turn Milosevic into a monster, whereas with Qaddafi, they’ve been ...
NATO’s illegal war against Serbia
The CIA and Greater Albania: The origins of the US role in the Balkans
Ethnic intolerance against Christians in Kosovostan
Obama ignorance exposed: States Kosovo left Serbia only after referendum, but there was NO referendum at all!
Why is Kosovo’s rebellion our war?
War crimes by British General Sir Michael Jackson: From Bloody Sunday in Derry, Northern Ireland to Croatia, Kosovo and Iraq
Albanology and political claims of the Albanians
Bosnia and Kosovo: Radical Islam, organ trafficking and Western mainstream media bias
Kosovo: The US “psyche”, US culture and US foreign policy
Kosovo drops poisoning from terrorist charges
Inside Kacanik, Kosovo’s jihadist capital
Remembering the NATO led war on Yugoslavia: Kosovo “freedom fighters” financed by organized crime
Bosnia, Cyprus and Kosovo: America and Islamism in the Balkans
Balkan Islamist galaxy in a nutshell
UNSC concerned over violence in Kosovo, US: What we saw in Djakovica unacceptable
Hearts beat in Kosovo for Islamist warriors
Noel Malcolm: “Kosovo – A Short History”, 1999. A history written with an attempt to support Albanian territorial claims in the Balkans (First part)
Photo album: Kosovo in March 2010
Libya: Is this Kosovo all over again?