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Kosovo as a low-level counter-insurgency prior to NATO getting involved. Not an ethnic cleansing or genocide at all. In fact, one of the worst massacres (at Racak) was recently uncovered as a fraud when the head of the UN Forensics Team, Helen Ranta, came clean.
You can't start a war with someone for something they did five years prior.
The Serbs were involved in a crackdown on the KLA. In this fighting, the KLA had killed Serb civilians and the Serbs had killed Kosovo Albanians. About 1,000-1,500 had been killed in equal numbers in the years leading up to the first dropping of NATO bombs.
The American team negotiating the terms of peace was horrid. Jamie Rubin, Wesley Clark, Madeliene Albright, all had a peace agreement at Rambouillet. The Serbs agreed to total withdrawal. The KLA, Hasim Thaci, did not go along, and the Americans were forced to create a sham of an agreement (Appendix B) which everyone knew was a no-go for the Serbs. They had peace at Rambouillet, and the Americans chose war instead. It was a cowardly choice which mimicked what had been done in Bosnia in 1991-1992 when Cyrus Vance and David Owen had the three leaders agree to a plan that, in the end, looked very much like Dayton. This was BEFORE 100,000 had died in Bosnia.
The ethnic cleansing campaign by the Serbs post-bombing became a matter of controversy when it was revealed that the publicized campaign, Operation Horseshoe, was concocted by German intelligence as propaganda.
The whole war was a farce from start to finish, playing games with people's lives, and in the end accomplishing absolutely nothing.
When the true history of 1990s ex-Yugo is written, it will only be seen as a colossal debacle of diplomacy, and a cowardly war conducted by ALL sides against innocent civilians.
In fact, when the true history of 1990s ex-Yugo is written, it will show the beginning of a new German Euro-imperial revival...
Interesting to note that the the map of the Balkans is looking strikingly similar to what is was during the 3rd Reich.
I see the Germans working on two further objectives in the region:
> destroying Republika Srpska - and giving full political power to their WWII allies - the Croats and the Bosnian Muslims
> detaching Vojvodina from Serbia (Habsburg wet dream) and in the process spoiling Russia's South Stream projects in the Balkans.
Second: Because South Stream is a direct competitor to Nabucco, where German interests are greater.
Third: Russian infrastructure on Serb territory will increase Serbia's political power. It's not as easy bombing Russian gas storage facilities as it is bombing Serbia's (which, by the way was the case in Novi Sad during NATO's 78 day bombing campaign of civilian infrastructure)
I'm sure Jerome (who certainly has more knowledge of the energy & infrastructure situation than I do) could add a couple of remarks on this one.
Obviously pipelines to China are a different matter - they improve Russia's leverage vis a vis Europe - although I don't think that China is regarded as a serious price competitor to Europe.
Finally I don't understand why, ultimately, the EU should be any more favourably disposed to Croatia or Bosnia than it is to Serbia - but then I don't understand the geo-politics of the region.
Any armed conflict is anathema to the EU, but if a peaceful modus vivendi can be found, I would have thought that the EU strategy would be all about creating greater economic, political, social and structural interdependencies in the region.
If that is not the strategy, then the EU has some questions to answer in the forthcoming EP elections...
notes from no w here
Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.
I am interested in the South Stream and North Stream discussion, and do see them as competing with Nabucco. But one thing to note about South Stream: the size of the pipes is very very small.
At capacity, it can't do what either North Stream or Nabucco can do. It's good maybe for some East and Central Euro countries, and Greece and Italy. But not much gas, relatively, will be moving through those pipes to make enough of a difference. Small potatoes. At least, this is what I've read. And if this is true, then Nabucco is even deader than we thought since it too is vying for a similar route where gas is not all that plentiful.
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