Thursday, February 28, 2008

Balkan Irredentism

"The current disaster in Serbia, including the attack on the U.S. embassy in Belgrade was predictable. That is, if you know the history of the region, our involvement under Bill Clinton and how George W. Bush, and the U.S. State Department's craziness about how to create 'democracy' and markets in the 21st century. ... The rush to [recognize Kosovo] may have a lot to do with resource issues as much as encouraging democracy to take root--which hasn't been happening under Clinton or Bush. ... Muslims, who represent 90 percent of Kosovo's two million people, have stated their claim on the new state. According to our source, a systematic ethnic cleasing of Kosovo's remaining Christian inhabitants has been going on for several years and will now likely escalate. ... We now have another nation in the heart of Central Europe that is home to drug cartels, mafia, and frankly, many potential Muslim terrorists. Recognition of Kosovo's independence also drives another stake into what is left of our shaky relationship with Russia. Our policies since the end of the Cold War towards that nation may just doom us to relive another Cold War of sorts. Isn't it odd that former atheistic Soviet Union is supporting a Christian society of Orthodox believers while the last two American administrations enable a growing arc of Islamic power and Arab militarism to form in the suburbs of Europe", Diane Alden (DA) at, 21 February 2008.

"To paraphrase Joseph Stalin, 'How many divisions does the EU have?' ... Consider Kosovo again. ... But is it a Muslim country in a post 9/11 landscape, with a history of drawing not only Albanian but also Middle Eastern jihadists to it defense. Russia and Serbia together have the military wherewithal to invade it tomorrow--Serbia by land, Russia by air--and end its breakaway experiment--to the relief of some Eastern European and Orthodox European states, and to the humiliation of the EU. What stops them is not a few NATO peacekeepers but the commitments of the [US] to use its vast resources to further the European agenda of stopping Serbian ethnic cleansing and aggression. ... Russia and the Middle East ... are sick and tired of Europe's empty lectures about human rights and feel only disdain for its absence of military light to back up its sermonizing", my emphasis, Victor Davis Hanson (VDH) at, 22 February 2008.

"Readers with exceptionally tenacious memories will recall that this pundit was opposed to the NATO intervention in Kosovo nine years ago. This may come as a suprise to readers without tenacious memories, since it is widely believed that I never saw a war I didn't like. Yet, believe it or not, I was opposed not only to the wanton bombing of Serbia, but to the whole 'inevitable' project of carving a new European Muslim state out of the flesh of that Orthodox Christian country. ... But the fact that Kosovo had a significant ethnic majority of Albanian Muslims over Serbian Christians was not, in itself, sufficient argument to detach it from Serbia by main force. For if that is the argument, the state system which provides the only order the planet currently enjoys will disintegrate. Strange to say, I am with Vladimir Putin on this one, and against George W. Bush. Mr. Putin's remarks on the inspiration that Kosovo's independence has given to violent separatists in Chechnya, Abkhazia-South Ossetia and elsewhere, are entirely to the point. Indeed, driving the Serbian government and Serbian people into the protective embrace of ex-Soviet Russia, and ultimately her ex-KGB strongman, was among several counter-productive dimensions in the war that Madeline Albright organized, along with other ruinous Clinton interventions in areas of peripheral interest to the U.S. ... The NATO action in Kosovo brought Mr. Putin--the hammer of the Chechens--to power, by demonstrating that force and force alone will decide secession struggles. ... Bush et al have validated ... a deadly new round of Balkan troubles, ripe for Islamicization", David Warren (DW) at, 23 February 2008.

"But with the presence of NATO troops, and swift recognition yesterday by the U.S. and European powers, ought to calm nerves and end the last territorial dispute in the Balkans. By taking the lead in the 1999 war that forced Slobodan Milosevics's ethnic cleansers from Kosovo and now on independence, the U.S. is shepherding one more Muslim nation to freedom", Editorial at the WSJ, 19 February 2008.

Well said DA. I wish Connie Baby, our Secretary of State, would read you column. I await the next administration's response to a Kosovar-like declaration of independence for the new state of Aztlan to be carved out of Southern California. Will Russia immediately offer it recognition and military support? Putin called the breakup of Serbia a dangerous precedent. I agree with Putin. Putin for President. Of the US. See my 11 January 2008 post.

VDH, be serious. The US lacks the military capability to defend Kosovo in Russia's backyard and everyone knows it. Why the Russians don't intervene militarily is for them to to know and for us to find out.

C'mon DW, join Spengler and my bandwagon, Putin for US President. Like DW, I opposed Clinton's Serbian adventure, believing it would only create an Islamic terrorist state in Europe.

The WSJ and I inhabit parallel universes. The only thing the US did by pushing the Serbs out of Kosovo is create a new jihadist state in Europe. The WSJ claims the US acts "end the last territorial dispute in the Balkans". Sure. Just like Neville Chamberlain came back from Munich in September 1938 with Mr. Hitler's last "territorial demand in Europe". WSJ, you can do better than this. Suggestion: have at least one editorial writer who knows some history.

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