Title: Message

The Kosovo We Don't Know
Tony Rubolotta

April 29, 2004

The recent killing of two Americans by a Jordanian, all serving with the UN police force (UNMIK) in Kosovo has temporarily brought the region to the front page, where the major media quickly linked the incident to Iraq, and then dropped Kosovo back into obscurity. The fact is things are not going well in Kosovo and the major media has several reasons for keeping the covers on the story.

What most Americans know about Kosovo is what Bill Clinton and his media cheering section told them in 1999. It was reported that Christian Serbs were engaged in a massive campaign of ethnic cleansing against Muslim Albanians. "Evidence" of a massacre in Racak was presented to back the claim. With popular, political and media support solidifying behind him, Clinton gave Serbia an ultimatum. Serbia refused, Clinton bombed, NATO occupied, the media reported and Hollywood even produced a few movies to further demonize the Serbs and fuel the propaganda.

With little or no news coming out of Kosovo now, we must assume that thanks to Bill Clinton, Kosovo is a thriving, peaceful democracy protecting the rights of all religious groups. Well, that's about as big a lie as what we were told about Kosovo in the first place. The Racak massacre was the breaking point Clinton used to rally support for the war. With hundreds of published articles about Racak, what do we really know about the "massacre"?

We know Serb forces engaged and defeated KLA forces in Racak in a classic firefight, an event witnessed by French and AP news crew on January 15. We don't know how many casualties were inflicted. The Serbs and news crew left and the KLA resumed control of Racak. The following day 45 bodies were found in a gully with the help of KLA guides. Forty victims were autopsied by a Finnish forensic team dispatched by the EU. The EU report refuted claims the victims were all shot at close range and mutilated. The report never used the word massacre and only found one victim shot at close range, maybe.

The Washington Post, claiming to have the EU report findings leaked by an "unidentified western source" wrote a story that misrepresented and extrapolated the findings. The Post claimed the forensic evidence proved the victims were executed in a massacre, which it did not. The head of the EU forensic team refuted the story. The AP and USA Today, not to be outdone by the Post, added detail and gore that was never proven. In contrast, Le Monde, with journalists at the scene, questioned the credibility of the entire scenario. They raised questions any good investigator should have asked, but were never answered.

KosovoWith hundreds of articles on Racak, it doesn't take long to determine that most are biased one way or the other. Articles that stick to the facts are very short and few, because the facts are short and few. In the end, the evidentiary requirement we use to convict criminals, "beyond a reasonable doubt," was never met for Racak. None the less, the United States and NATO were going to war over an alleged, unproven and potentially staged massacre of 45 people.

Kosovo was having a civil war with about 2,000 casualties per year, about equally divided between the warring factions. What most Americans don't know is that the struggle dates back to 1389 when the Muslim Turks defeated the Christian Serbs and occupied Kosovo. Control of Kosovo has seesawed for 600 years, but it has been largely a history of persecuting Christians, first under the Turks and later by their Albanian successors. Atrocities occur during civil wars, but the scale of this war was a tempest in a teapot compared to other conflicts in the world.

What was the calculation and motivation for US involvement in the affairs of Serbia?

The calculation was simple. Bombing a Christian nation could be done with relative impunity. There would be no "Christian" outrage as there might be in the Muslim world if Serbia were Muslim. War on Serbia would endear us to Muslims for intervening on behalf of a Muslim cause. Milosovic was not that popular in Serbia and his support would melt away under pressure. Serbia, a moderately developed country, would provide a "target rich" environment. The Serbs, proud and protective of their culture, would submit to prevent its destruction. Popular support in the US and Europe would survive a short and apparently bloodless campaign.

Serbia was bombed and surrendered. Clinton claimed victory. NATO occupation forces moved in. The UN police force took their positions. Milosovic was put on trial. All was well in Kosovo and it dropped from the radar screen. Clinton's legacy as a champion of human rights, influential diplomat and great wartime president was secured. In fact, it was only secure as long as no one knew what was happening in Kosovo, hence the news blackout by the major media in the US and most, but not all of Europe.

The Kosovo civil war continues, but this time the Albanian Muslims have the upper hand and the NATO/UNMIK forces appear incapable of intervention. Serbian Christians are being killed and driven from Kosovo. Christian churches and monasteries are being systematically destroyed. Kosovo, like Albania and Bosnia is being turned into an Islamic terrorist base. Crime is rampant and the economy, except for the drug-trade, is stagnant. Kosovo is moving toward independence as a Muslim state with plans for eventual union with Albania. Investigation of Serb atrocities by the Hague War Crimes Tribunal have found the claims greatly exaggerated or non-existent. Kosovo will be a thorn in the side of Europe and the US as Muslim gratitude takes its usual turn toward hostility. The infidels served their purpose and are no longer useful.

And the motive for intervention in Kosovo? I don't think you have to look any further than the character of Bill Clinton and his media buddies.


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