Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Godspeed, Kosovo

An independent nation was born this past Sunday, though it has technically existed since 1999. The Kosovars—90 percent of whom are related to their western neighbors in Albania—celebrated in Pristina, their capital, and across their land.
Serbs, meanwhile, have been protesting, rioting and pelting U.S. and E.U. embassies with whatever they can get their hands on. The Serbian capital Belgrade has seen massive unrest since Kosovo declared its independence.
Russia, Serbia's giant Slavic cousin, condemned the breakaway and those countries that supported it. President Bush recognized Kosovo's independence, the U.S. joining its European counterparts France, Germany, Britain and Italy in welcoming the world's newest nation.
Countries that did not give Kosovo their blessing includes Spain, China, Romania and Cyprus. When you consider that those countries have fought their own battles with separatist groups, it becomes clear that they think a dangerous precedent was set by the issue of Kosovo. (It will be interesting to see whether or not Canada provides support, if they conclude that supporting Kosovo legitimizes the Quebecois separatist movement.)
It is right and just to recognize Kosovo. This is the lastest stage in the break-up of Yugoslavia: if Slovenia, Croatia, Macedonia and, most importantly, Bosnia and Herzegovina could gain their recognized independence, why can't Kosovo? Montenegro broke away in 2006 and barely a squeak from the Serbs.
Serbia wants someone to bully and the ethnic Albanians of Kosovo are a prime target. Suddenly, they're squawking about "their land" being ripped from them? If the Serbs want to put Slobodan Milosevic and his campaign of genocide in the past, then they must drop their nationalist pretenses and allow Kosovars their independence without further protest and tell Russia to stay out of the affair.
Furthermore, how hypocritical would it be for the U.S. to not recognize Kosovo, when our entire history is based on a freedom to secede from the oppressive nation which controlled us? But at least the British weren't trying to exterminate the early Americans.
Kosovo—in addition to Albania—is a good friend to the U.S. and the West. They appreciate NATO's intervention in 1999, ending the genocide being committed against them. In recognizing Kosovo, the U.S. and E.U. are wrapping up the aftermath of that Balkans war and re-affirming our friendship with Kosovors who, like the Albanians, adore us. We could not let them down.
This is about a people's desire for liberation and to be able to decide their own future.
Good luck, Kosovo. Enjoy your freedom.


East of Eden said...

Sadly, this news only got about half a blib on the news over the weekend. I hope Kosovo can make it.

kristen said...

What? A nation likes us? ;-)

This actually made front page news in my paper, so it's nice to see this thing recognized.

Nightdragon said...

LOL, K.! Don't you remember Bush's visit to Albania last year? The Albanians were cheering him, they couldn't get enough of him. He's as much of a hero to them as Clinton was. Sure, he got his watch stolen (apparently), but that could have happened anywhere!
Actually, in today's edition of The Sun (a British national tabloid), none other than Bob Geldolf wrote a column praising Bush for his efforts at tackling AIDS in Africa. And the Tanzanians seem to adore Bush. So, yeah, there are some Bush (and America) fans in the world, hard as it is to believe.
It's interesting that it made front page news in your paper while in Eden's it was only a blurb.