Recent developments in Europe ring a bell, in particular the surge of secessionism (Catalonia) is reminiscent of certain events. Crises of today shed more light on the roles of the EU, the USA and Germany. To what extent have they been guided by the principles of international law and democracy in the Kosovo crisis? Did they bother to actually read the reports of their own (expensive) missions in Kosovo and Metohija (KDOM, KVM, ECMM) depicting the realities on the ground? To what extent have they been defending the right to self-determination and human rights and to what extent abusing separatism for the expansion of geopolitical interests? As the implementation of long-term strategies takes time, recollections of the past may help to better understand the interests and roles of the EU in the ongoing Kosovo negotiations in Brussels.
Over a longer period of time, the leading members of both NATO and the EU have been supporting the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in Kosovo and Metohija. In 1999 they launched an armed aggression against Serbia (the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia), violating the very principles of international law which EU officials are so eagerly referring to these days. To sum it up, the same countries and supra-national unions whose spokespersons swear to this day that they have always been upholding the same principles and rule-based policies, had dealt the strongest blow to the global legal order and to the United Nations since the end of World War II back in 1999.
The policies pursued by governments of those countries and by supra-national unions thereof during the Yugoslav and the Kosovo crises have provoked the spread of secessions, the expansion of Islamic extremism, Wahhabism and terrorism in Europe and the rest of the world. Disregarding and violating the principles enshrined in the Helsinki Final Act, in the UN Charter and in international conventions and treaties, they have induced a lasting instability in the Balkans as the most vulnerable part of Europe. Presently they want to pressure Serbia into officially recognising the forcible capture of her state territory in the form of an engineered unilateral and illegal secession of Kosovo and erasing it all from track-record “for the sake of her European future”, the same Serbia they have demolished, deceived and humiliated. What kind of future could possibly be built upon such foundations?
The genie of separatism and terrorism that the leading countries of NATO and the EU have released from Aladdin’s lamp in Kosovo and Metohija back in 1998/99 for the purpose of furthering the geopolitical goals of the USA and some European powers, such as Germany and the UK, for example, keeps spreading over Europe, while the EU and NATO believe they would be able to push it back into the lamp, clear their names and revitalise their dented unity by sacrificing once again the interests of Serbia. The real tragedy for Europe is the misconception that truth is only what the EU commissioners and spokespersons declare to be the truth. The dominance of such reasoning is preventing a genuine understanding of the historical maelstrom that has engulfed the Old Continent!
“War on the FRY was waged to rectify an erroneous decision of General Eisenhower from the Second World War. Therefore, due to strategic reasons, the US soldiers have to be stationed there.” This quote was the explanation given by American representatives at a NATO conference held in late April 2000 in Bratislava, and noted by Willy Wimmer, former State Secretary in the German Ministry of Defense, in his report to Chancellor Gerhard Schröder dated 2 May 2000.
The first point in this report is an explicit US request that its allies (NATO members) recognise an “independent state of Kosovo” as soon as possible, whereas the tenth, last point, reads that “the right to self-determination takes precedence over all others”. Should one wonder any further about the present referendum on secession of Catalonia?
Wimmer’s report also notes the US declared position at the Bratislava Conference was that the 1999 NATO attack on Yugoslavia without UN authorization is “a precedent to be invoked by anyone at any time, and which is going to be invoked”. This renders any allegations of a principled and rule-based policy utterly dubious, when the aggression executed in violation of the UN Charter is declared to be a precedent, and the unilateral secession of Kosovo directly resulting from such aggression is declared to be “a unique case”?!
In the eve of NATO 1999 aggression on Yugoslavia two major international missions had been placed in the Province of Kosovo and Metohija. One was under the auspices of OSCE known as Kosovo Verification Mission (KVM), headed by American diplomat William Walker and the other under the auspices of EU known as European Community Monitoring Mission (ECMM), headed by German diplomat Dietmar Hartwig. The latter conveyed the often repeated assessment of the leader of KVM and his entourage that: “There is no such thing as high costs to deploy NATO in Kosovo. Any cost is acceptable.”
After Kosovo Albanian leadership had declared unilateral illegal secession in 2006, Dietmar Hartwig sent four letters to the German Chancellor Angela Merkel in 2007, urging her that Germany should not recognise such unilateral act. In his letter of 26 October 2007 to Chancellor Merkel, Hartwig1, among other points, says:
“Not a single report (of CMM) submitted from late November 1998 up to the evacuation (of ECMM, KVM) just before the war broke out (1999), contains any account of Serbs having committed any major or systematic crimes against Albanians, and not a single report refers to any genocide or similar crimes… Quite the contrary, my (ECMM) reports have repeatedly communicated that, considering the increasingly more frequent KLA attacks against the Serbian executive authorities, their law enforcement personnel kept demonstrating remarkable restraint and discipline. This was a clear and persistently reiterated goal of the Serbian administration – to abide to the Miloševic-Holbrooke Agreement (of 13 October 1998) to the letter so not to provide any excuse to the international community for an intervention.
In the phase of taking over the Regional Office in Priština, colleagues from various other missions – KDOM, US, British, Russian, etc. – confirmed that there were huge ‘discrepancies in perception’ between what said missions (and, to a certain degree, embassies as well) have been reporting to their respective governments and what the latter thereafter chose to release to the media and the public of their respective countries.
False reports should have prepared the war
This discrepancy could, ultimately, only be understood as part of long-term preparations for war against Kosovo/Yugoslavia. In fact nothing of what the media – and, with no less intensity, political sources, too – have relentlessly claimed, has ever happened until the time of my departure from Kosovo. Accordingly, until 20 March (1999) there was no reason for military intervention, which renders illegitimate any measures undertaken thereafter by the international community.
Certainly the collective behaviour of the EU Member States prior to, and after the war broke out, gives rise to serious concern, because the truth was disrespected, and the credibility of the international community was damaged. However, the matter of my concern and the reason why I write this letter is exclusively the role of the FR of Germany and its role in this war and its political objective to separate Kosovo from Serbia …”
Germany promoted the division of Serbia
The daily political news reporting over the previous months (before October 2007) made it progressively more evident that Germany not only supports the American desire to see Kosovo independent, but also actively promotes its separation from Serbia. You are to be considered responsible for this, because according to the German Basic Law the ultimate competence rests with the chancellor. The same holds true for your foreign minister, in particular, who knows perfectly well what is going on in Kosovo, and is presently pursuing your political directives by tirelessly advocating Kosovo’s independence and, thus, its secession from Serbia. Instruct him, rather, to promote a sustainable solution for the Kosovo issue which is in line with international law. Only if all states choose to respect the applicable rights laid down in international law, we can have the foundations for the common life of all nations…
Should Kosovo become independent, it will be perpetuated as the place of unrest…
“A dangerous signal to other ethnic groups”
Contribute to achieving the solution for Kosovo on the basis of the endorsed UNSC Resolution 1244 according to which Kosovo remains a province of Serbia. American wishes and active efforts to see Kosovo secede from Serbia and see Kosovo and Kosovo Albanians achieve full independence, are contrary to the international law, politically deprecated and, on top of all, irresponsibly expensive…
Kosovo’s secession from Serbia guided by ethnic criteria would constitute a dangerous precedent and a signal for other ethnic communities in other countries, including EU Member States, who could rightfully demand the ‘Kosovo solution’” –
Dietmar Hartwig writes in conclusion of his letter to Chancellor Merkel.
Enough said about the “humanitarian intervention” and the concerns for the protection of rights of the Albanian population as the features of the “uniqueness of the Kosovo case”. American Military base “Bondsteel” in the vicinity of the town of Uroševac, surely by a pure chance, happens to be among the largest US military bases outside the USA. Perhaps their anxiety over being potentially spied on from the Serbian-Russian Humanitarian Centre in Niš merely confirms that the “Bondsteel’s” mandate is strictly local, humanitarian and just for a short time?
It was the USA, the EU and NATO, not Serbia, who froze the conflict following the armed aggression of 1999. They have kept it frozen for the past 18 years by not allowing complete implementation of UN SC resolution 1244. They forced Serbia to fulfil all its commitments insisting on the legally obliging character of the resolution while exempting themselves and the Albanians from any obligation stated therein. They realise that the full implementation of UNSC Resolution 1244 amounted to a preservation of integrity of Serbia, which is exactly what they do not want since it goes against their geopolitical concept of expanding to the East. Especially now, when the West is undergoing a transition from which it may not emerge as mighty as it was during the uni-polar world order.
At present the West demands that Serbia “unfreezes” Kosovo “independence process”. How? By compelling Serbia to sign a “legally binding agreement” with Priština, to recognise the illegal unilateral secession, legalise the illegal 1999 aggression, accept the consequences of violent ethnic cleansing of over 250,000 Serbs from Kosovo and Metohija and essentially assume responsibility for all of that! •
1 Translation of the German quotes from Dietmar Hartwig’s letter by Current Concerns
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