05 June 2007

Serbs Are Rightfully 'Aggrieved' in Kosovo



In your Jan. 24 editorial calling for Kosovo's independence ("Kosovo Libre"), a misleading assertion is made. "Somewhere along the way" from the NATO bombing of 1999 to today, the editorial says, "recent Balkan history was turned on its head" -- with the result being that alleged oppressor Serbia "is now treated like the aggrieved party."


Rather than answer that question, the editorial goes on to argue why Kosovo Albanians deserve independence, against the wishes of the Serbs. Yet let's consider some facts about the most "recent" Balkan history: Since the NATO intervention, over 200,000 Serbs and other non-Albanians have been ethnically cleansed from Kosovo, while over 150 Serbian Orthodox churches have been damaged or destroyed by Albanians.


The few remaining Serbs in the United Nations-administered province live mostly in vulnerable enclaves, in constant fear for their lives as Albanian nationalists continue to prey on them through attacks and intimidation.


These events just might have something to do with the increased sympathy the Serbs have enjoyed over the past year or so. By drawing attention to a major shift in public perception without explaining what caused it, you become guilty of irresponsible journalism, not to mention sounding like Albanian lobbyists rather than an impartial and respected newspaper.


Christopher Deliso Director www.balkanalysis.com Skopje, Macedonia




The Serbs were the majority population of Kosovo for a thousand years. During that time they built 1,580 churches and monasteries in an area the size of Rhode Island. Many of those churches date to the 12th century. The oldest mosque in Kosovo was built less than 500 years ago after the Turkish defeat of the Serbs at the Battle of Kosovo in 1389. Nowhere in your editorial do you tell your readers that 42 Serbian churches and more than 500 Serbian homes went up in smoke in four days of outrageous Albanian violence in March 2004 as 17,000 NATO troops stood and watched in helpless silence. This is a sign of what will surely happen in Iraq if U.S. President George W. Bush's policy goes down in defeat.


Since World War II, the Serbs have gone from being the majority in Kosovo to representing less than 3% of its population. Yes, Serbs are "aggrieved," and rightfully so considering that 45% of the Albanians in Kosovo are illegal aliens who cross the border from Albania into Kosovo as easily as Mexicans cross the U.S. border each night in San Diego.


Why would the world need two Albanian states in the heart of Europe? Or do you really believe that a "Greater Albania" is not at play here?


U.N. Resolution 1244 clearly states that "Kosovo is part of Serbia." Or does the Journal encourage nations to sign such documents as tongue-in-cheek agreements?


William Dorich Los Angeles (The writer is the editor of "Kosovo," published in 1992 by Kosovo Ica)