12 November 2006

Behind Kosovo's Façade

SERBIANNA (USA), Tuesday, October 24, 2006 By Russell Gordon


"Most respected [Nazi] party friend Lammers! I received your letter of April 29 together with the letter of the president of the central committee of the Second Albanian League of Prizren. At this time one Albanian SS division is being formed. As things now stand, I plan to form a second SS division, and afterwards an Albanian SS corps will be formed. Heil Hitler! Yours very faithfully, H. Himmler"


Arrogantly strutting around the opulent OSCE restaurant, on an upper floor of its Pristina headquarters, Richard Holbrooke cut an imposing figure. The "Balkan peace negotiator" whose bloody legacy stretched from Vietnam and Indonesia to Belgrade minced no words about US policy for the region.


In front of the five heads of UNMIK he bellowed: "Forget multi-ethnic Kosovo. Forget Resolution 1244. We only signed that to get rid of the Serbs."


It was a warm August 1999, and the official representatives of the "international community" remained coolly silent. Only one official, Dennis MacNamara, head of UNHCR spoke up, questioning why the UN took on the mission if the expulsion of the Serbs was a foregone conclusion. Holbrooke brushed off his inquiry; the other "dignitaries" remained quiet.


The Serbian province of Kosovo is nearing the artificially imposed time limit for a "final decision" on its status as either an autonomous Serbian province, or an independent state, albeit an international protectorate. And indeed the "decision" has probably already been made, which will see another tragic human exodus.


The casual observer could be forgiven for attributing normalcy to present day Kosovo upon first glance. Pristina's cafes are filled with reveling Albanian and international patrons. Perhaps a quarter of the cars in urban areas are late-model BMWs, Mercedes or Audis. Shiny new construction projects rise along many major roads and Albanian population centers. It appears that Albanian Kosovo is undergoing an economic boom. The Albanian flag waves proudly beside the Stars and Stripes, perhaps the only Muslim region where it does so. And a spirit of freedom pervades the majority Albanian society. But image is not reality - neither in media, nor in strategic issues. And Kosovo is neither normal, nor stable.


Kosovo Serb widow and refugee (IDP) Dragana Dejanovic must raise her three small children without their father after her 23 year old husband Ivan was murdered by Albanians, shot to death on 8/27/2005, while she was still pregnant. The Serb members of the Kosovo Police Force (9%) tried to help, but the Albanian dominated force does not seek perpetrators of crimes against Serbs. Local Albanians told her: "What are you waiting for [to leave]? We already killed your husband. Do we have to kill you and your children too?"


Kosovo today is the nerve center of organized crime in Europe. The Kosovo Albanian mafia - whose capos are the ethnic Albanian leaders of Kosovo (Hashim Thaci, Agim Ceku, Ramush Haradinaj, and hundreds of others), and America's allies - control most of the heroin, arms, and white slavery rings in Europe. Most of the luxury autos in Kosovo are stolen in central Europe, and given false papers; there are so many that prices are as low as 4000 Euros. Kosovo is the safe-haven for their laundered funds, often invested back into construction projects on real estate stolen from Serbs. Kosovo Albanians have committed armed robberies in France with automatic weapons and RPG's, and have overtaken the Sicilian Mafia in Italy, largely due to their ruthlessness, and closed society. Their criminal rackets stretch into London and throughout the US. Their money has bought off US senators and congressmen; their revisionist history and expansionist aims made official policy of the US Congress, and State Department. In Kosovo, their heroin labs are protected and heroin transported by units of the US military. During the Albanian insurgency of 1997-1999 (and through 2001 in Macedonia and Presevo), US Special Forces and British SAS armed, trained, and gave battlefield expertise to Albanian separatists waging brutal separatist campaigns in the region. During the war in Kosovo in 1999, the US military airlifted the Albanian UCK terrorists into some Serbian villages, where every civilian was slaughtered.


Islamist influence is spreading rapidly in Kosovo, due to the influx of Arabs.


The Kosovo "Prime Minister" General Agim Ceku, is perhaps the most blood-soaked leader in the region. Ceku, an American-trained former General of the Croatian Army, led the brutal Operation Storm in the Krajina in 1995 - Europe's largest ethnic cleansing since World War 2 - which drove 250,000 Serbs from their ancestral homelands, and killed over 2000 civilians. The operation received American air-cover and precision bombing, used UN observers as human shields, and violated other Geneva Convention rules of war by disguising military vehicles as if belonging to the UN, calling out to Serbs to come out of hiding, then slaughtering them by bullet, knife, and axe. European Neo-Nazis joined as volunteers, and participated in the carnage. Ceku's Albanian UCK forces operated similarly against largely defenseless Serb civilian populations. Given these facts, Ceku's recent claim that "the Serbs are cowards" seems profoundly hypocritical.


Cynically, one of Kosovo's most notorious Albanian war criminals and Mafiosi, Hashim "The Snake" Thaci (darling of Madeleine Albright and Christiane Amanpour, whose Victory Hotel in Pristina is adorned with a Statue of Liberty) recently stated in Koha Ditore:


"organized crime and mafia which has penetrated to the highest ranks of the government pyramid are the biggest dangers for Kosovo.but what will happen after the status? Who will stop the criminal gangs that have been installed by this weak government?"


In Kosovo, an intolerantly violent nationalism (the Albanian flag) has its complement in the Islamic jihadism as Albanian mosques are springing up across the province while Churches are being destroyed and looted.


Certainly it won't be the very criminals who are the prime culprits.


The official response of US Government officials to questions about the role of jihadist and radical Islamist elements in the Kosovo Albanian independence movement is that it is an inconsequential phenomenon, and that most Albanians are secular nationalists. However, Western military intelligence officials have extensively documented the inroads made by jihadist/terrorist elements, and their presence throughout Kosovo, and links to global Islamist terror networks and narco-mafias is widely known. In many areas young Kosovo Albanians are being converted to the Wahabist faction, and are highly visible in their telltale short haircuts, beards, and ankle-length pants. As well, many Arabs are present from the Middle East and France, presumably leaders of jihadist cells. Moreover, anti-Western jihadist sermons are now a regular feature at many of the new mosques. Western military intelligence officials have stated that the findings of their investigations into the jihadist terror networks is routinely ignored or blocked by NATO, UN and US officials.


Bali i Kombetar, the Albanian NAZI party insignia on Pristina wall, 2006. Bali i Kombetar was a volunteer Kosovo Albanian Nazi organization formed in 1939 and reported of by Himmler to Hitler as the most elite of Kosovo Albanian Nazis that have killed and expelled thousands of Serbs and Jews in WWII. Today, this Albanian Nazi organization is freely flourishing under the protection of NATO troops.


While globalist "think tanks" and policy hacks espouse an independent "Kosova", they are either party to policy, or are seeing only the roadside glitz. But there are two very distinct Kosovos easily visible today to inquiring minds. In minority enclaves (Serbs, Gypsies, Gorani, Egyptians, Croats, Turks, Ashkali and others) populations live in a state of constant fear from Albanian intimidation or attack, which occur almost daily. Not one Jew remains. Serbs are wantonly and routinely murdered with no legal recourse, as the "justice" system is entirely in the hands of ethnic Albanians, placed there by Hashim Thaci and UNMIK officials. While 9% of the Kosovo Police Corps are ethnic Serbs, they are mere stage-props, as the real power is in the hands of its Albanian core that temporarily maintains a façade of minority tolerance to appease their backers in the "international community."


In one incident, Albanians allegedly dressed in NATO/KFOR uniforms approached a group of 14 Kosovo Serb farmers in Staro Gradsko, slaughtered them, and were rumored to have mutilated some. British NATO forces botched the entire forensics investigation and no one has been caught. Since 1999, over 1000 ethnic Serbs have been kidnapped and murdered, with few of the bodies recovered. Few ethnic Albanians have been arrested or tried for these murders, or for the destruction of over 130 historic Serbian churches, the countless monuments and graveyards vandalized, or the ethnic cleansing of 230,000 Serbs and other minorities. Even where rare personal relationships exist between Serbs and Albanians, due to the nature of Albanian's intrinsic nationalist aspirations and closed society, an Albanian won't betray another (say, to recover mortal remains of a Serb), even to help a "friend."


Gracanica Monastery seen through barbed wire.


Those minorities that remain do so in conditions very different from the majority Albanians. Serbs and other persecuted minorities venture out of their hamlets and enclaves at great risk, and having been completely disarmed by KFOR/NATO, have no means of defense even within them. Armed incursions by Albanian attackers still occur, and are often directed against isolated, defenseless, and often elderly civilians. Even if Serbs had the means to defend themselves, the Albanian leadership waits for any possible excuse to launch another pogram against Serbs, such as that of March 2004, where thousands of Serbs were ethnically cleansed under the watchful eyes of NATO troops, and dozens of centuries' old churches demolished. The pretext was the drowning of some Albanian boys in a river, purported by Albanian radio to have been chased there by Serbs and their dog, but the incident turned out to be nothing more than an accident. The pogram was centrally directed, well organized, and methodic in its brutality. (One Western military intelligence officer in the region commented that one of the reasons for the pogram might have been a suggestion that the UN may pull out of Kosovo, thus divesting many Albanians from the biggest source of employment in the region.)


When the "international community" has voiced any consternation at Albanian savagery, it has been at the inconvenience it causes to American policy designs for the region. Holbrooke, returning to Kosovo in 2005 as a $250,000 paid advisor of the Kosovo Albanian regime, suggested that it would be easier to get independence "if [they'd] stop killing Serbs." Given his anti-Serb penchant, and previous comments that "Serbs are murderous assholes," one assumes he would lodge no protest if the "final solution of the Serbian Question" was resolved AFTER the status decision.


Kosovo Serb refugees at Obilic container camp, live in containers donated by Russia. They were ethnic cleansed by Albanians. Hot in summer and freezing in winter, the people have little assistance. Some are handicapped, and other are aged. Since 1999, over 200,000 Kosovo Serbs have been ethnic cleansed by Albanians, over 1000 murdered. Many have had their land, livestock, houses and posessions violently expropriated from them by Albanians, with no protection of justice offered by NATO, the EU or UN who occupy the Serbian province. Meanwhile, UNICEF has spent billions of dollars renovating mosques in the province.


The League of Prizren in 1878 sought to create a Greater Albania autonomous from the Ottoman Empire throughout Albania, Kosovo, parts of Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Greece. This was promoted at the Congress of Berlin, and the Second League of Prizren in 1943. The issue of militarist Albanian designs on the region was made known as early as 1912 when at a London conference a Kosovo Albanian leader said "We will fertilize the land of Kosovo with the bones of Serbs." The invading Ottomans, Austrians, Tito, Albanians, and now NATO have killed or driven out the Serbs in huge waves, reducing their numbers from majority to minority status in less than two generations.


The map Hitler created of a Greater Albania based on the League of Prizren is espoused by current Albanian nationalists, and openly backed by some in Washington, Brussels, and the Bilderberg Group. And Hitler's legacy continues today. Bill Dorich writes:


"Albanians exposed their Nazi ideas during the Holocaust when they joined Hitler in liquidating over one million Serbs, 60,000 Jews and 80,000 Roma. That should preclude Albanians from stealing Serbian or any territory 60 years later. Kosovo's autonomy was a dictator's decision and Tito did this without a single vote of the people of Yugoslavia or its communist government. Demanding that the Serbs now abide by rules of law is absurd. during the "autonomy" (1974-89) the Albanians banned the Cyrillic alphabet of their minority Serb population-an alphabet and language used by the Serbs since the 800s. Serbs were fired from their jobs in Kosovo and a reign of persecution followed. Every policeman, judge, teacher, doctor, and government official was an Albanian. These Albanian authorities removed Serbian books on history, religion and music from Kosovo schools and libraries and burned over 2 million volumes. During this period they also destroyed a Serbian monastery, raped Serbian nuns and Serbian girls and burned hundreds of Serbian barns to encourage Serbs to leave.more than 125,000 Serbs fled Kosovo from 1974 to 1989."


Even during the times of Tito's multi-ethnic Yugoslavia, Kosovo Albanians were known for their brutal campaigns against ethnic Serbs. As Balkan authority David Binder noted in the New York Times throughout the 1980's:


Nov. 28, 1982 "In violence growing out of the Pristina University riots of March 1981, a score of people have been killed and hundreds injured. There have been almost weekly incidents of rape, arson, pillage and industrial sabotage, most seemingly designated to drive Kosovo's remaining indigenous Slavs - Serbs and Montenegrins -- out of the province."


Nov. 9, 1982 "Such incidents have prompted many of Kosovo's Slavic inhabitants to flee the province, thereby helping fulfill a nationalist demand for an ethnically 'pure' Albanian Kosovo. The latest Belgrade estimate is that 20,000 Serbs and Montenegrins have left Kosovo for good since the 1981 riots."


Nov. 1, 1987 "Ethnic Albanians in the government have manipulated public funds and regulations to take over land belonging to Serbs.Slavic Orthodox churches have been attacked, and flags have been torn down. Wells have been poisoned, and crops burned. Slavic boys have been knifed, and some young ethnic Albanians have been told by their elders to rape Serbian girls.As Slavs flee the protracted violence, Kosovo is becoming what ethnic Albanian nationalists have demanded for years.an ethnically 'pure' Albanian region, a 'Republic of Kosovo' in all but name."


The predatory, aggressive and expansionist behavior prevalent in the 1980's continues today. Serbs watch from their houses as Albanians usurp their fields and livestock. Many rural Serbs live in abject poverty, unable to continue farming or herding to feed their families for fear of attack or murder. When Serbs try to farm, herd or fetch firewood on their land, they are often shot at or threatened.


Those Serbs that remain in predominantly Albanian areas fare the worst, under constant pressure to either sell their property at rock-bottom prices, or abandon their homes and farms outright. One woman whose 23 year old husband was shot dead by Albanians was warned: "What are you waiting for? We already killed your husband. Do we have to kill you and your three children too? Go!"


Kosovo Serb Djordjevic family in October 2006. Kosovo Christian children like these are growing up in poverty and are precluded from schooling because Muslim Albanians will kill them if they ever venture out of their enclave.


The Clinton administration billed the bombing of Yugoslavia as a "humanitarian intervention to stop genocide" - in reality a low-level counter-insurgency that had killed 1800 people in one and a half years of fighting, one third of them non-Albanians. The bombing killed an estimated 2,600 Yugoslav civilians of various ethnicities. A CIA official admitted last year in the European press that the US had been supporting Kosovo Albanian guerillas since 1997. A Human Rights Watch report is particularly instructive of how the Albanians operated:


"The KLA was responsible for serious abuses in 1998, including abductions and murders of Serbs and ethnic Albanians considered collaborators [sic: loyal to] the state. In some villages under KLA control in 1998, the rebels drove ethnic Serbs from their homes. Some of those who remained are unaccounted for and are presumed to have been abducted by the KLA and killed.The KLA detained an estimated 85 Serbs during its July 19, 1998 attack on Orahovac. Thirty five of these people were subsequently released, but the others remain missing as of August 2001. On July 22, 1998, the KLA briefly took control of the Belacevac mine near Obilic. Nine Serbs were captured that day and they remain on the ICRC's list of the missing. In September 1998, the Serbian police collected the 34 bodies of people believed to have been seized and murdered by the KLA, among them some ethnic Albanians, at Lake Rodanjic, near Glodjane. Prior to that the most serious KLA abuse was the reported killing of 22 Serbian civilians in the village of Klecka.The KLA.engaged in military tactics which put civilians at risk. KLA units sometimes staged an ambush or attacked police and army outposts from a  village, and then retreated, exposing villagers to revenge attacks. Most seriously, as many as 1000 Serbs and Roma [gypsies] have been murdered or have gone missing since June 12, 1999. elements of the KLA are clearly responsible for many.of these crimes.There is also a clear political goal in many of these attacks: the removal from Kosovo of non-ethnic Albanians in order to better justify an independent state."


While the international community [sic: Washington] screamed at Belgrade for alleged discrimination of ethnic Albanians during the 90's (while they converted Kosovo into an ethno-centric parallel state), it has been noticeably silent in demanding Albanian compliance with modern human rights standards of ethnic tolerance. The northern Kosovo city of Mitrovica is particularly instructive. There, the town is divided by the Ibar River into a multi-ethnic North, and a "pure" - cleansed - Albanian South. In the predominantly Serb North, 4000 ethnic Albanians, plus Roma, Bosnian Muslims, and Croats live side by side with Serbs in relative normalcy - as they had during the times of Tito's Yugoslavia. But the South of Mitrovica has been totally cleansed of its non-Albanian inhabitants, violently so, and is a focal point for Islamist/jihadist organizing in the region. Moreover, Serbs in the North suffer insecurity due to provocations and raids by Albanians who cross over from the South to bomb, knife and shoot Serbs with impunity. Recently, a 16 year old Albanian youth crossed over from the South and threw a hand grenade in a multi-ethnic café, wounding several people. He was arrested, but soon liberated. And while UN and NATO troops stage frequent raids of Serb houses to confiscate the last vestiges of arms for self-defense, few such operations are undertaken against the heavily armed Albanians.


Clearly, as NATO, UN forces and Albanians create "facts on the ground," Holbrooke's stated policy is coming to fruition.


Russell Gordon is a journalist and photographer specializing in Yugoslavia and Mexico.