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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Why Israel's supporters should care about Kosovo

There is a small piece of disputed land, that is rich in history but poor in everything else. Its preponderant population of two million Muslims wants to turn it into a sovereign state. The United States, the European Union, and much of the 'international community,' are in favor of creating a sovereign state on that piece of disputed land, but doing so would open a Pandora’s Box of geopolitical, legal, moral and security issues, and create a black hole of lawlessness, endemic corruption and jihad-terrorism.

Sounds like Judea and Samaria or Judea, Samaria and Gaza, doesn't it? But it's not. It's Kosovo, the southernmost province of Serbia. As soon as December 10, the United States may attempt to circumvent a certain Russian veto in the UN Security Council by recognizing a unilateral declaration of independence in Kosovo. Condi Rice has already promised the Albanian Muslims who live there that "one way or another" they will have their 'independent state' - which has just made them more intractable at the negotiations (sounds familiar, doesn't it?) And Israel is one of the few countries that might be able to stop it.

Hat Tip: Colonel Panik
Strong American support for the independence of Kosovo is detrimental to Israeli interests. The US position is based on the view that a solution to long-standing conflict can and should be imposed on the parties by outside powers. In addition, the new state's creation seeks to award part of a nation’s territory to a violent ethno-religious minority; futilely hopes to curry favor with the Islamic world through appeasement; effectively gives a fresh impetus to the ongoing growth of Islamic influence in Europe; and denies the fact that the putative state’s leaders are tainted by terrorism, criminality, and well-documented links with global jihad. Most importantly, it betrays a cynically postmodern contempt for all claims based on the historical rights and spiritual significance of a land to a nation.

It is in Israel’s interest to reiterate its already-stated position that any solution to Kosovo should be based on the agreement of both parties in dispute. In addition, the Israeli government should declare that it will not extend recognition to any self-proclaimed “state” unless its independence is approved by the UN Security Council.
For those of you who cannot figure out why the points I've highlighted are not in Israel's interest, the paper (by James Jatras and Serge Trifkovic under the auspices of the Begin - Sadat Center for Strategic Studies at Bar Ilan University) lists seven reasons why supporters of Israel should be concerned by the possibility of an independent state of Kosovo. Those reasons mostly relate to the precedent that would be set by world powers awarding part of a country's territory to an ethnic minority living in that territory without the country's consent. That has implications beyond Judea, Samaria and Gaza, as Arabs are a majority in parts of the Negev and Galilee as well. In fact, it has long been claimed that if the 'Palestinians' ever get their state reichlet in Judea, Samaria and Gaza, the next thing they will do is try to claim the Negev and Galilee.

As in the Middle East, there is already an Islamic state in the Balkans. It's called Bosnia. Thus, like here, there is no reason to create another state where none existed before.

How can Israel prevent this from happening? Jatras and Trifkovic explain:
Washington is exerting pressure on EU countries to break with their stated policy of acting within the UN framework, and go along with Washington. The United States also looks toward key non-EU allies – Canada, Turkey, and Israel among the foremost prospects – to follow its example and extend recognition to a self-proclaimed state of Kosovo.


While it may not be readily apparent to most Israelis, Jerusalem’s decision whether or not to follow Washington’s lead may be among the most crucial factors in the unfolding drama. The prospect that Israeli political leaders are prepared to display a degree of clear-headedness and realism sadly lacking in Washington, and say No to Kosovo’s separation from Serbia, may be one of the most influential factors in inducing Washington to step back from the brink of a disaster in the making.


Secondly, the impact of Israeli opinion on the public policy community in the United States should not be underestimated. Among the American advocates of Kosovo independence are many sincere friends and supporters of Israel who have no notion that their advocacy might have a negative impact on Israel. Such advocates are found among media, public policy groups and think tanks, advocacy organizations, and other centers of influence representing in particular the US Jewish community, liberals, neoconservatives, and elements of the Christian community.

In addition, Israel’s military and defense experience with terrorism is widely respected in American defense, intelligence, and homeland security sectors, both in and out of government, and in both the Executive and Legislative branches. It is important that every such contact in the United States be informed by their Israeli interlocutors that the wrong solution for Kosovo would have an adverse impact on Israel.
Read it all.

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At 1:52 AM, Blogger Marc Dalessio said...

I can give you a couple of other reasons why Israel's supporters should care about Kosovo.

The U.S. and Europe want to give the Kosovars an independent homeland in part because they were recently victims of an organized attempt on the part of Serbia to wipe out their people, their culture and their traditions.

Also, Kosovars are Albanian, and many Albanians (my fiancée included) feel a strong sympathy with Israel as they too find themselves in a small country where most of their neighbors would like to see them wiped off the map.

Israelis who visit express the same sentiment.

At 12:35 AM, Blogger Jez said...


I appreciate your point very well. I'm a little concerned given the history of the KLA and its role in arriving at this situation, but to my mind Russia and Serbia's treatment of Kosovans has been disgusting. I hope your fiancee's views and the present gratitude of most Kosovans to the NATO alliance are the dominant views and wish Kosovo every success. (On a similar understanding I wish the Palestinians would be grateful for their gains and I could wish them every success also.)

At 7:12 PM, Blogger Dave said...

"The U.S. and Europe want to give the Kosovars an independent homeland in part because they were recently victims of an organized attempt on the part of Serbia to wipe out their people, their culture and their traditions."

What utter nonsense.The reverse is actually true. Since NATO-EU troops took over,over 350,000 Serbs,Jews and Gypsies have been brutally expelled and over 6,500 murdered in Kristallnacht style pogroms by the Albanian Islamofascist heroin trafficking,child-sex slavery racketeering mafia gangsters known as the KLA-UCK.

President of the Jewish community in Pristina,Kosovo: Cedomir Prlinčević: "And that's what surprised us the most. Instead of defending the population they [KFOR] just stand by and looking what's happening like it is not a relevant situation. During June and July [1999] 300,000 people left Kosovo which are non-Albanian population, Serbians, Turks, Gorani [Slavic Muslims] , "Gypsies," that is the Romi, also people from Montenegro. 300,000."



Cedomir Prlincevic, president of the Jewish community in Pristina was driven out by the KLA. When two dozen armed men broke into his family's apartment, he says:

'My mother, who is 80 years old, suffered a heart attack because it reminded her of 1943 when Hitler's SS units broke into her apartment in the same way.'

Prlincevic also stresses that 'terror against the non-Albanians started after Kfor's arrival in Kosovo'.

He said: 'I showed a document to a British major providing that I was the president of the Jewish community in Pristina. He just looked at me and said "forget it, it's currently irrelevant".

UNHCR, the refugee agency, says that 250,000 people have been driven out since June. The Yugoslav Foreign Ministry estimates the figure at 350,000. The majority are Serbs, but Roma, Jews, Turks and others have also been ethnically cleansed on a massive scale.

Historian Paul Polansky who lived amongst the Roma in Kosovo between July and November last year, has documented discrimination against Romany people by the UN, NATO and major aid agencies. After calling attention to a lack of medical facilities, food and security, he was threatened with expulsion by the very agency which invited him there - the UNHCR.



If you really want the facts about what really happened in Kosovo, Croatia and Bosnia from 1990 to 1999, I suggest you read here at these pro-Israeli websites:






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