"One can only hope that in punishing the Serbs yesterday, today and tomorrow at Kosovo, America’s reigning political culture can be induced to recall that the unsinkable Titanic fell prey to a block of ice,"
(R.K.Kent in the Paris-based Dialogue No.20, 1996)

The Clinton foreign policy team made a decision in 1998 to use the ethnic Albanian "Kosovo Liberation Army" (KLA) as a weapon for "getting at the Serbs" despite its links to drug traffic and other illegal activities. Thus, in July 1998, the Lehrer Hour on PBS sponsored a propaganda "documentary "on the KLA and its supporters in the U.S. Since

the State Department had openly declared the KLA to be a "terrorist organization," the "film" was a first home-public step in laundering it into a "patriotic"group fighting for "Kosovo’s independence." This writer wrote to Mr. Lehrer to protest this type of propaganda.There was no  retraction. Senator Lieberman went as far as to assert that the KLA "was fighting for American values." Judging by the results so far, it is virtually certain that Secretary of State Madeleine Allbright (with help from General Wesley Clark) had made a sub rosa promise  to the KLA at Rambouillet in February 1999. In order to "get the Serbs and Milosevic," by bombing Serbia, Madeleine needed two things. One was to make it impossible for "Milosevic" to accept the last-minute "amended" provisions of the "Peace Plan" - which she called, "Setting the bar too high"...]

The other  was its formal approval  by the KLA.  She obtained the KLA signature without an open and written U.S. support for Kosovo’s independence, KLA’s basic goal. But, the promise had two stages. In the first one, Kosovo,  under NATO and UN control, would be turned over to the KLA, ‘our ally’ in the air war. With Kosovo in the grip of the KLA, "ethnic cleansing " of the Serbs would be sure to follow. There was a precedent. Along with the then National Security Adviser, Anthony Lake, Madeleine Allbright approved the Croat" Operation Storm "  which booted out of  Krajina in August 1995 almost a quater million "ethnically cleansed" Serbs. With an Albanian population of about 99 percent, it would be hard to thwart Kosovo’s eventual independence from Yugoslavia, probably by mid-2002. This is currently promoted by Morton Abramowitz, political  adviser to the KLA, member of a Conservative Think -Tank,  a pro-Turkish , anti-Armenian  and anti-Serb activist of long standing and considerable foreign-policy influence in Washington. But, the viability of it all goes back to a determined , diven and manipulative Secretary of State who substituted her own  jollies, demons(and the  need to appear "tough") as "The U.S.  National Interest."  She had  cut a ‘deal’with violent and crime-connected ethnic Albanians from Kosovo.  She thought to have outwitted both the Serbs at Rambouillet and a host of European opponents who did not wish to side with the KLA. She failed to realize just to what extent the shrewd KLA men at Rambouillet had set her to use U.S. Power to achieve two ends beyond independence alone.

With financial backers from the Albanian Diaspora in  North America, in Europe and some Muslim states, the KLA aim was to remove the constraints and over-rule of state, any state, within a free zone for the production and distribution of drugs, shipping of "illegals" into Western Europe, and other lucrative criminal activities. The Albanian  clan  structure lends itself to an acephalous society thriving on its "free zone" status. The KLA wanted to control a commercial empire. The best way to attain this was to hook it up with "Albanian Nationalism." This is where the second aspect comes in. With substantial ethnic Albanian presence in Macedonia, Montenegro and Southern Serbia, a KLA-controlled Kosovo would become the base from which to construct the union of Albania and its Balkan Diaspora into a "Greater Albania." When Thomas Friedman of the New York Times visited Albania in 1998  and  concluded that it was not really a state he decreed ,in a New York Times article,   that the idea of  "Greater Albania" was an inconsequential "fantasy." Shortly before this article , this  writer passed on to Friedman a copy of a  plan to resolve the Kosovo Problem. Friedman disregarded it as did the ten U.S. Senators on the Foreign Relations subcommittee for Europe, along with the German Foreign Minister, Klaus Kinkel, and seven Ambassadors to the United States and the United Nations. In substance, the plan sought to arrest the movement toward Greater Albania by proposing a Western-monitored  referendum among the Kosovo Albanians in 1998 to allow each individual to remain within the Yugoslav State or be added to Albania.  The choices would be assisted by a Serb-accepted partition of Kosovo and a Western assistance with transfers and the economic development of Albania itself.   As is no longer the case since the NATO intervention, substantial  numbrs of Kosovo’s ethnic Albanians had  no particular love for the KLA violence but such distinctions were "buried" by the "Western"media through which electonic and scribal journalists replaced the priests of yesterday as guardians of higher morality. Indeed, the non-violent leader of Kosovo’s Albanian population , Ibrahim Rugova , was marginalized in favor of the KLA. The appointed UN "gaulaiter" for Kosovo, Bernard  Kouchner,  just happened to have been France’s most vocal Serbophobe. By commission and omission, he did everything to implement Allbright’s  under-the-table promise. Since June 1999, the KLA had "cleransed" Kosovo of some 200,000 Serbs plus all of the "other" minorities. Kidnappings and assassinations of Serbs, Romas and even "politically incorrect" Albanians have been rampant. Kouchner proclaimed an era of "justifiable retributions," a malignant cover-up from the founder of "Doctors without Frontiers." Both by factual data and some reporting of foreign  correspondents visiting the area since June 1999, Kosovo become and continues to be  a paradise for drug dealers, white slavers, mafiosi from Albania, kidnappers, extortionists, "ethnic avengers" against what is left of non-Albanians at Kosovo, and "ethnic destabilizers" in Southern  Serbia and Western Macedonia so far.

While all this has been going on and as the movement for "Greater Albania" finally comes into view beyond an independent Kosovo as its base, no U.S. Senator has stood up to denounce the Clinton "legacy" --the so-called "victory" at Kosovo--  and condemn the KLA.Despite the KLA’s gross and sustained violations of "American values" one cannot find "Moral Joe"  now , at this end of the Atlantic. Yet, even the local Albanian population  voted massively for Rugova in  recent elections, thus repudiating in effect the KLA leadership.

Kouchner’s response has been to incorporate KLA elements into the new U.N. Constabulary. As an aspring French Intellectual, Kouchner decided to defuse the criminals by turning them into gendarmes. All he did was to solidify it "llegally" as a new terrorist group with its extortions, beatings and worse. Even a modest proposal in our Congress  to cut off its funding went the other  way instead. The cash-rich Albanian Lobby in the United States  continues to have a lock-in  on Congress, having  bagged years ago the patronage of a pivotal Senator, Robert Dole, and having cultivated a number of key solons in both Houses. The abridged and diminishing media  reporting from Kosovo in general glosses over the fact that the KLA has  not  been really disarmed as required by the "Peace Plan."  The KLA became  de facto a "combat ally" of NATO (read the Clinton Administration). Its political head, known to have gotten rid of  his rivals by assassination, was at the Democratic Convention last year. One or two KLA "generals" visited Washington as well. The military leader of the KLA, Agim Ceku, a documanted war  crimina from Krajina in August 1995 as a Croat Army General, has been quietly advised to go into hiding in order to avoid arrest,  following a still "secret" inditment by the Hague Tribunal for Yugoslavia.

Right now, a branch of the KLA is taking its guerrilla war into Southern Serbia, across the three-mile demilitarized zone, and into areas which contain a substantial ethnic Albanian population. The Western media just never could "discover"in their black-and-white scenario,  opposing all Serbs to all Albanians and vice-versa, that there are in Serbia some 200,000 Albanians. Of these, about 80,000 live in the Greater Belgrade area. Many have fled from the KLA into Serbia in 1998-1999. The zone in question is "protected" manly by U.S. troops but the KLA guerrillas have had little trouble  in massing over the zone into Southern Serbia, with medium heavy weapons as well.  How much of this is due to an ad hoc policy, geopolitics or yet to avoid American casualties is known only to foreign-policy insiders in Washington who belong to both parties. The advent of democracy in Serbia does not at all suit either the KLA or the many influential "Western" Serbophobes. Sagging careers got a boost through  Serb-bashings. There was an artificially-induced "American Enemy" in the Balkans, "the Serbs," allies in two largely forgotten World Wars. NATO too was dying-out as a useless cold-war fossil but "the Serbs" allowed for its resurrection.

With NATO as an American hegemon in Europe, new U.S. base at Kosovo in Camp Bondsteel as an outpost on the road to  Eurasia and its mineral resources, an active Albanian Lobby in the U.S. and  the decade old fun of Serb-bashing, it will only take a small step to jump on the Serbs again.

All that is needed is a successful attempt of the KLA guerrillas in Southern Serbia to provoke the Serb Third Army into a massive riposte sure to harm also a number of Albanian civilians comingled wirh the KLA.

It is the classic road, from Bosnia to Kosovo, to represent the Serbs always as"aggresssors" and the local Muslims as "victims."   Despite endless instances to the contrary, the formula just does not change, even when provocations and staged "massacres" do not work immediately. It is not entirely clear why it persisted throughout the last decade but

it has to do almost certainly with some rather fuzzy "pro-Muslim" leanings of the Clinton Administration, whatever real driving forces have been behind them.

The major question now poses itself:  what will the new Bush Administration do? Will it continue the "Clinton legacy at Kosovo?" Will it, too,  praise  overtly the advent of democracy in Serbia but mask a continued alliance with the KLA, perhaps to prevent U.S. troop casualties if this "alliance" breaks down? Or, will it turn around, scrap the "legacy" and either pull the U.S. troops out or really dismantle the KLA with the show of  total NATO force? With such questions in mind, this writer wrote a 4000-page memo in June 2000 to the then Governor George W. Bush, with a copy to General Colin Powell. Reproduced below are substantial portions of the memo.

Greater Albania, not Greater Serbia,  is the Balkan Destabilizer
(26 June 2000)

"I am outraged by what the Clinton foreign-policy team did in ex-Yugoslavia, including Kosovo....I am positively dedicated to two tasks. One is to make ourt foreign policy elite accountable to the American People as we have been ruthlesly manipulated by non-elected officials and a completely amoral First Family. The other is to enter itno the widest possible discusion of who we are, what we are becoming and where we are going in the post-Cold War era?...The 78-day destruction from the air to punish the entire (Serb) pupulation was way out of proportion to even the alleged crimes at Kosovo, now revealed to have been either exaggerated or entirely false....

....We have currently some 5,600 troops on the ground in Kosovo. Some consider it a patriotic duty not to rock the boat by (publicly) debating Kosovo. Such a debate, it is argued, would endanger our men in uniform by encouraging the more extreme Albanian elements to engage in anti-American violence at Kosovo. (Another argument concerns)NATO. (Some of us) wish to keep it going as a (would-be) protector of Human Rights and as a deterent against violence within Europe...Our troops are better-off within NATO. We will need to keep them at Kosovo indefinitely (it is said) to ‘keep peace between the Albanians and Serbians.’ The next President will have to deal with the Kosovo Problem by ‘selling’ to the American People our long-term military presence in the area. To bring up all the negative features of the persistent Kosovo Problem and the ways in which it has been exacerbated would only serve to make the ‘selling’ vastly more difficult...(There is no need) to engage in ‘recriminations’ over Kosovo.

What is not widely known and even less understood, a decision has already been made to stay at Kosovo without (really) bothering to consult  the American People. Both the CIA and Pentagon have been in Albania for years in anticipation of  U.S. presence at Kosovo....(Camp Bondsteel) is the second largest U.S. base in Europe....We,the People, will have nothing to say in the matter and the incoming President will be nothing more than the Great Certifier. All of this has to do with two major considerations. Perceived ‘geo-political’ goals deemed to be ‘constant’ define the influential foreign policy insiders (in a collective way)..... (But)...since the Pentagon has revealed through the’air war’ its complete dominance of NATO, Western Europe is moving increasingly away from NATO. It views it now as a U.S. hegemon over Europe itself. A Russo-German alliance is in the wind too. In fact, beyond the Balkans, NATO is becoming irrelevant to the rest of Europe.(It will not even attempt to settle ethnic disputes) and it is dying in ex-Yugoslavia although this will not be admitted. It was never menat to be what (NATO) was made into.....It is worth stressing that NATO has also proven to be ineffective in forcing the Serb Third Army and Police at Kosovo to observe the Human Rights of its Albanian population. On the contrary, the NATO intervention led for the first time to (an Albanian) mass exodus out of Kosovo and a definite increase in all-around violence with its Serb and KLA components assisted by NATO bombs....The NATO ‘victory’..... shows that it has failed  (on the whole)  in protecting the Human Rights of non-Albanians within Kosovo...

(The new Administration) could not possibly end-up on the minus side by distancing itself  from the 78 days of destruction. It should come as a surprise  (to the new President) ---and none of his foreign policy gurus will tell him (forcefully enough)- -- just how much resentment exists (abroad because of our air war,its results and unintended cinsequances).). Such distancing (could yield many dividends) as it will actually internationalize the domestic ‘compassionate Conservatism.’.....Instead of a foreign policy that eggs on terrorists and incites acts of terrorism against us, instead of spending billions on fighting terrorism we could and should spend a few millions to (shed the Clintonite arrogance) and revive the image of an America respected as man’s noblest experiment in co-habitation with ethnic and religious bridges to virtually  every part of Planet Earth. (The new President) should NOT PRESIDE OVER POLICIES THAT RESULT IN AN EVER-WIDENING HATRED OF THE UNITED STATES..( An early step would be) to instruct our Armed Forces that the (present) U.S. Government does not consider "the Serbs" as an enemy...

.Turning the Serb nation, an ally of ours in 1914 and in 1941, into an ‘enemy’ and siding with successors of extreme nationalists in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo( was hardly a ‘brilliant foreign policy success.’) (This was) compounded over a the corporate media forcing our elected leaders (to react to endless and sensationalized hypes with economic sanctions. Sanctions which punish the elderly, the children and the middle class are not only inhumane. They are counterproductive...They solidify the very leaders we wish to bring down. They defeat one of our most cherished ideas, namely that free markets create economic propserity which makes Democracy itself possible. By using economic sanctions to close instead of open a society we shoot our own fundamental credo to death. Tantrum throwings, moral crusades, instant gratifications via economic punishments should never again be allowed to dominate foreign policy....(in order to pander to the ‘moral giants’ of the parlor room, the editorial  board  and the Beltway).....

In order to solve the Kosovo Problem it must first be examined. Any other approach will  ( keep the Balkans destabilized for a long time). The Albanian non-material culture is rooted in two dominant traits. One is the ‘Kanuun’ or  Custom (and  customary law by extension), as interpreted by clan leaders and sacerdotal persons. The other is ‘bessa’ or Oath of Honor. When the two converge, a course may be put on hold but cannot be altered.  This convergence took place at Rambouillet when the KLA delegates(on their honor) signed the ‘Peace Plan’ (with promises under the table by Madeleine Allbright).For them, the issue is no longer whether or not to get independence from Serbia but when. Having used Mr. Clinton’s bogus" humanitarian" crusade against’ the Serbs’ (and Madeleine’s obssession with Milosevic) to take us to the cleaners, they will settle for nothing else in the long run but ‘total victory.’.(At the moment)., the KLA has no reason for any ‘rebellion’  either against the UN or NATO .( Even with Rugova’s  electoral sweep)Yet, sooner or later and probably within about two years, Albanian nationalists in and out of the KLA will conclude that the UN Trusteeship and the de facto occupation by NATO are roadblocks to independence. We will be looking at another nasty guerrilla war mid-way in the first term of a newly elected resident at the White House. How can all this be defused?

(Throughout the fratricide and other tragedies within ex-Yugoslavia,) retrun of refugees from all of its parts has been the one steady Western demand. Everything hence, should be done to return at least 300,000 Serbs, Romas and others, incluing pro-Yugoslav Albanians willing to return home from Serbia.

The KLA and (The) Kosovars’in general should be told that the UN will back this demand by deputizing the Serb Third Army to return to Kosovo under UN auspices and, together with NATO, guarantee the safe and incremental retrun of the Serb and other refugees in large numbers.

By an agreement already, not honored by NATO, the Serb Third Army units were supposed to return anyway to northern Kosovo in June 2000 to protect the old monasteries and the remaining Serbs. This could be modified to add the Serb military to NATO, with a co-command. It would {also serve to) alter significantly the destructive relationships (of the Clinton era) between the Serb military and a U.S.-led NATO. It is also most likely  that neither the "ex-KLA" nor a large number of Kosovo's Albanians would wish to see the Serb Third Army back. (The alternative would be a total and verifiable disarmament of the KLA and an immediate halt to the fomented  Albanian rebellions in Montenegro and Macedonia). (With such conditions) the renewed substantial presence of Serb civilians at Kosovo would at once block the independence movement and further drives for Greater Albania."

(end of Memo).

In a preface to the Memo of 26th June 2000, this writer assured Governor Bush of not having any career goals and of not  being "an old crank" who seeks some sort "importance" by  writing to "Very Important People."  In a separate note to General Powell, I revealed to him that I was only a corporal in the U.S. Army Intelligence. I added that  both Napoleon and Hitler had been corporals too but this fact left me  with no sense of joy or accomplishment. It reemains to be seen whether Citizen Kent can get a real hearing in the Bush White House as the new President has insisted that every citizen do his or her duty. Will a corporal’s suggestions be taken seriously by the General whose foreign-policy perceptions and views are more than likely to predominate in the Bush Preidency?