THE ROAD TO PEACE IN THE BALKANS IS PAVED WITH BAD INTENTIONS
It has been long and widely forecast that the security situation in the Balkans — indeed, in South-Eastern Europe generally — would become delicate, and would fracture, during the final stages of the Albanian quest for independence for the Serbian province of Kosovo and Metohija. The Kosovo region is now a lawless area. It has been ethnically-cleansed of Serbs, and re-populated by Albanians who have progressively and illegally, over the past decades, migrated into the area. Years of so-called peacekeeping by the international community count for nothing. Kosovo’s presence as a nominally independent state, without any of the essential foundations to meet the true criteria for sovereignty, can in no way further the stability of the region, or of Europe. Neither can it serve US strategic interests, unless US interests can be defined as a breakdown of viability of Eastern and southern Europe. Not only Kosovo, but all of Albania and other Balkan communities have become captive of the criminal-political movements which owe their power to their alliance with Al-Qaida, Iran, and the Saudi-funded Wahhabist movements. Therefore, new warfare will be supported by many elements of the international Јihadist movements which work closely with Albanian groups such as the KLA along the so-called Green Transversal line (or Zelena Transverzala) — really a clandestine highway or network — which not only carries jihadists but also narcotics and weapons along international supply lines crossing from Turkey and the Adriatic into the Balkans and on into Western Europe. So, the broader battle is now being joined in South-East Europe, in Kosovo, Rashka, the Preshevo Valley, in FYROM, Montenegro, and Epirus being in large part proxy warfare which is symptomatic of the emergence of a new Cold War on a global scale. One can only imagine the negative consequences for Balkan stability if, for example, Turkey’s status changes and Ankara no longer feels obliged to temper its activities, or its use of Islamist surrogate or proxy groups to further pan-Turkish ambitions. On the other hand, we have not yet seen the completion of the break-up of Yugoslavia, and even the wrenching of Kosovo may not complete it. We will then see the dismemberment of some of the Yugoslav parts already independent, perhaps even the dismemberment of FYROM and Bosnia. Perhaps those State Department officials will be surprised, too, to see — a decade or two hence — the claims of autonomy emerging for parts of Arizona, Southern California, or Texas, citing the same pretext of “self-determination” now being claimed by those who moved across the borders to occupy Serbia’s Kosovo province. The Balkans region and the Eastern Mediterranean generally are entering a further period of crisis, insurrection, and possibly open conflict. None of the regional states, but particularly Serbia, are doing enough to address the security ramifications of the coming de facto independence of Kosovo. Finally, conflict issues in the Middle East, and specifically in Iraq, and relating to Iran, will continue to have a profound impact on the stability of the Balkans, and vice-versa
Copley, Gregory: Clausewitzian Friction and the New Cold War, in Defense & Foreign Affairs Strategic Policy, 6-2007.
Copyright (c) 2017 Gregory R. Copley
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