Tuesday, August 12, 2008

All roads lead back to Kosovo..

So..the Russia-Georgia war has received some much needed attention. The blame game/analysis are still in full swing. As is common with most conflicts..political historical knowledge is a must. So we go back to Kosovo. I will provide some links, and let you read, think, and come to your own conclusions.

Meanwhile, I do feel I would like to give you a famous quote. It somehow came to mind as I was 'reading around'.

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.
Dwight D. Eisenhower


The Absurdity of "Independent" Kosovo

"With their unfailing passion for the inconsequential and their knack for doing the wrong thing at the wrong time, NATO leaders appear determined to carve the province of Kosovo out of Serbia and grant it "independence." That they lack the physical, legal and moral power to bestow independent statehood to a part of a state that is neither a member of the E.U. nor NATO appears only to have emboldened them to use this issue to demonstrate Western resolve."

"Kosovo's status is governed by U.N. Security Council Resolution 1244, which envisages only self-government for Kosovo, and acknowledges the "sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia." Kosovo's status can't be changed without a new resolution."

"Meanwhile, making use of the engineering skills of Halliburton subsidiary, Brown & Root Services Corp., the United States built a giant military base, Camp Bondsteel, covering some 955 acres or 360,000 square meters. The camp also includes a prison. According to Alvaro Gil Robles, Human Rights Commissioner for the Council of Europe, who visited the prison in 2005,

Camp Bondsteel
"What I saw there, the prisoners' situation, was one which you would absolutely recognize from the photographs of Guantanamo. The prisoners were housed in little wooden huts, some alone, others in pairs or threes. Each hut was surrounded with barbed wire, and guards were patrolling between them. Around all of this was a high wall with watchtowers. Because these people had been arrested directly by the army, they had not had any recourse to the judicial system. They had no lawyers. There was no appeals process. There weren't even exact orders about how long they were to be kept prisoner."

Kosovo: A New Day of Infamy for a New Century

"Writing in the usually interventionist Wall Street Journal on February 9, Ruth Wedgwood, one of America’s foremost legal scholars, thus warned of the “dangerous precedent to tear apart the territory of a member state of the United Nations”—a move that may cause an unnecessary crisis when America is overengaged elsewhere. “Kosovo’s best (and perhaps only) chance to join Europe’s economy is to ride in as a part of Serbia,” she says, but it is more likely to join the Organization of the Islamic Conference instead. In addition, Wedgwood warns, Kosovo’s proclamation may well destabilize the Old Continent, from Bosnia and Macedonia to Abkhazia and South Ossetia". (emphasis and bold added by yours truly)

"The [trio] further warned that the current U.S. policy is marked by a dismissive attitude toward Russia’s objections: The United States should not prompt an unnecessary crisis in U.S.-Russia relations, lest Russia withdraws her support on issues such as Iran’s and North Korea’s nuclear intentions. Such cooperation would be undercut by American action calculated to neutralize Moscow’s legitimate concerns regarding Kosovo. On an issue of minor importance to the U.S., they ask, “is this a useful expenditure of significant political capital with Russia?”"

The role of Nato changed after the Cold War.. but do not forget what it's original purpose was.

Cold War Europe map from oxford university press

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