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Kosovo Jubilant at KLA Acquittals
Institute For War And Peace ^ | dec 2nd 2005. | Janet Anderson

Posted on 12/02/2005 3:50:24 PM PST by kronos77

Tribunal Update Tribunal home Kosovo Jubilant at KLA Acquittals

Kosovo’s majority Albanian population welcomes result of Hague tribunal’s first case against former guerrillas.

By Janet Anderson in The Hague (TU No 432, 2-Dec-05) The streets of Pristina erupted with flags, horns and celebratory gunfire on December 1 as news spread that the Hague tribunal had acquitted two of the first three members of the Kosovo Liberation Army, KLA, ever to face trial there for war crimes.

Judges in The Hague sentenced one former foot soldier, Haradin Bala, to 13 years in prison for his role in a KLA prison camp in the village of Lapusnik where Serbs and suspected Albanian collaborators were tortured and murdered in 1998.

But they declared themselves unconvinced that former commanders Fatmir Limaj and Isak Musliu had played any role at the facility. Limaj, who held a senior role in the guerrilla army which helped drive Belgrade security forces out of Kosovo, gained a high profile as a politician in the wake of the conflict.

While the verdict has met with a predictably downbeat response in Serbia, reactions amongst Kosovo’s majority ethnic Albanian population have been jubilant. Many feel that the court ruling, despite confirming that horrific individual crimes were committed, vindicates the KLA as an organisation.

The judgement comes at a particularly welcome time for Albanians in Kosovo, with talks set to begin on the future political status of the region. Most hope that the process will result in independence from Belgrade.

Observers in Pristina described a collective sense of relief as the judgement hearing in the case was broadcast live on television screens in homes and bars across Kosovo.

The resulting celebrations were a far cry from the dire predictions published in local newspapers of what might happen if the three were found guilty. Just two days before the judgement was issued, an estimated 20,000 people filed through the streets of Pristina protesting the innocence of the three men.

When Limaj went to The Hague in 2003, Kosovo’s then prime minister, Bajram Rexhepi, declared that the trial would give the accused “a chance to prove his innocence and the purity of the war that was led by the KLA”.

Some observers now see particular significance in the judges’ decision to dismiss charges of crimes against humanity against the three accused. They did so on the grounds that there was insufficient evidence that the atrocities at the Lapusnik camp were committed as “part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against a civilian population”.

“It’s been understood here as a cleansing of the resistance,” said Petrit Selimi, the managing director of Pristina’s new Daily Express newspaper. The verdict, he explained, has been “seen as recognition that there were [individual] crimes, not a campaign”.

Kosovo parliamentarian Enver Hoxhaj told IWPR that the judgement is “a good message while Kosovo’s final status talks are going on”, explaining that it has given the local population a feeling that they are supported by the international community.

With Kosovo’s president Ibrahim Rugova in bad health and former prime minister Ramus Haradinaj currently awaiting a Hague war crimes trial, there have been concerns that Albanians will lack a strong figurehead for the talks on Kosovo’s future.

Analysts in Kosovo told IWPR that Limaj is viewed by some as having the potential to fill the vacuum. Selimi explained that Limaj is now viewed as a “sympathetic figure” because of the dignity with which he went to The Hague.

Hoxhaj, who is a senior member of Limaj’s Democratic Party of Kosovo, PDK, told IWPR that he thought Limaj would step back into the “crucial” role he played in the party before being indicted. “We missed him,” he added.

The judgement has also served to support the view that Hague tribunal’s first case involving former KLA fighters was in fact only launched as part of an effort to show the court’s impartiality with regard to the various parties involved in the Balkans conflicts of the Nineties.

A series of senior Serbian generals and politicians, including former Yugoslav president Slobodan Milosevic, have been indicted for their role in alleged ethnic cleansing in Kosovo in 1999.

There has also been speculation about what consequences the outcome might have on the joint trial of Haradinaj and two others said to have been his subordinates in the KLA. They are charged with involvement in the abduction and murder of Serbs, Roma and suspected Albanian collaborators.

Edgar Chen, a long-time observer of proceedings at the Hague tribunal for the Coalition for International Justice, told IWPR, however, that it is important to remember that these are two distinct cases. “Haradinaj is charged under a different set of alleged facts,” he said. “Judges will have to consider Haradinaj's case on the evidence that [prosecutors] and his defence presents.”

The judges hearing the case against Limaj, Musliu and Bala in The Hague appeared keen to emphasise that the acquittal of two of the accused did not mean that crimes had not taken place.

They underlined that civilians had been held in horrific conditions at the KLA camp in Lapusnik, with “gross overcrowding” and some chained to the wall; KLA soldiers, often wearing hoods to hide their faces, beat inmates into unconsciousness; detainees, including some who had been shot, were denied medical treatment despite the existence of a clinic in the village where KLA personnel were treated.

Apart from three prisoners who were murdered at the camp itself, Bala was also found to have taken part in the massacre of nine prisoners in nearby mountains.

But the judges said they were not satisfied that Limaj and Musliu held positions in the KLA which would have made them responsible for the camp.

While there was a “strong possibility” that Limaj had been personally present at the facility, they said, there was not enough evidence to convict of personal involvement crimes there. As for Musliu, the judges ruled that there was in fact “little evidence to identify... [him] as having any kind of involvement in the prison camp”.

Meanwhile, reactions in Belgrade to the verdict have been unsurprisingly gloomy. Rasim Ljajic, president of Serbia’s National Council for Cooperation with the Hague tribunal, told the Beta news agency that the result would bolster the positions of those who are hostile to the United Nations court.

Janet Anderson is IWPR’s programme manager in The Hague.


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: albania; albanians; balkans; christianity; clintonistas; clintonlegacy; clintonsquagmire; corruption; crime; genocide; humanrights; islam; islamofascists; kla; kosovo; murder; muslims; religion; serbia; terror; wrongplace; wrongside; wrongtime; wrongwar
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1 posted on 12/02/2005 3:50:25 PM PST by kronos77
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To: kronos77

hmm, if they were acquitted, whats wrong with celebrating? am i missing something?


2 posted on 12/02/2005 3:54:31 PM PST by minus_273
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To: kronos77

Muslim site:BALKANS: STAR TREATMENT FOR ACQUITTED KOSOVARS

http://www.adnki.com/index_2Level.php?cat=Politics&loid=8.0.235868612&par=0

Photo shows Albanian Child in City that is purged from Christian children, showing Che Guevarra-style poster of Albanian national hero, with Albanian national hero statue behind childe in a place of demolishen Christian king Lazarus statue, that was demolished on ver day that NATO entered city.


3 posted on 12/02/2005 3:55:01 PM PST by kronos77 (Islam will be dealt with. Speak softly and carry a mashinegun with you.)
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To: minus_273

Limaj was comander of camp in wich people were killed. He was acquitted regardless of his command responsability on which accusation against Milosevic is based.
No Serb were acquitted sofar.

Did they acquitted Auschvitz commander in Nurberg?


4 posted on 12/02/2005 3:56:51 PM PST by kronos77 (Islam will be dealt with. Speak softly and carry a mashinegun with you.)
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To: kronos77

Limaj and Musliu, who operated a prison camp in the village of Lapusnik in which 23 Serb and Albanian civilians, suspected of collaborating with Serbian forces, were killed, arrived in Pristina on Thursday night, greeted by a crowd of their supporters. They were acquitted by the Tribunal on Wednesday, while a third indictee, Haradin Bala was sentenced to 13 years for killing nine civilians.


5 posted on 12/02/2005 3:57:35 PM PST by kronos77 (Islam will be dealt with. Speak softly and carry a mashinegun with you.)
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To: kronos77
The title of original article is "Kosovo Jubilant at KLA Acquittals". Your addition to the title is not supported either by the court decision to acquit or by the article contents.
6 posted on 12/02/2005 4:01:18 PM PST by GSlob
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To: GSlob

Title is marked separatly, and qoted properly.
Im not sorry for my opinion.


7 posted on 12/02/2005 4:06:52 PM PST by kronos77 (Islam will be dealt with. Speak softly and carry a mashinegun with you.)
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To: kronos77
Question: Idiot that bombed the hell out of Serbia, letting Kosovo KLA Islamist loose in Europe.

Answer: Who is Bill Clinton.

8 posted on 12/02/2005 4:49:07 PM PST by ricks_place
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To: kronos77

When people change titles, searches don't work.

nuff said.


9 posted on 12/02/2005 4:54:37 PM PST by Nasty McPhilthy (Those who beat their swords into plow shears….will plow for those who don’t.)
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To: kronos77; zagor-te-nej; Lion in Winter; Honorary Serb; jb6; Incorrigible; DTA; ma bell; joan; ...

I'm sure they are carrying on just like that Palestinian woman cheered after 9/11.

Justice will come to Kosovo along with the peace that the Serb Army will bring.


10 posted on 12/02/2005 5:15:42 PM PST by FormerLib (Kosova: "land stolen from Serbs and given to terrorist killers in a futile attempt to appease them.")
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To: kronos77

Spell checkers can be your friend.


11 posted on 12/02/2005 5:51:29 PM PST by grey_whiskers (The opinions are solely those of the author and are subject to change without notice.)
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To: kronos77

The place for opinions is in the "comments" section of the posting, not in the title.


12 posted on 12/02/2005 5:53:24 PM PST by GSlob
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To: GSlob

You are dealing with a group of propagandists with a foreign agenda — and an un-American relationship to the truth.


13 posted on 12/02/2005 6:24:59 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Hunden

Don't I know it - I could smell their crap even from three miles upwind from it. Thus I was constrained to more polite forms of expression.


14 posted on 12/02/2005 8:52:39 PM PST by GSlob
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To: GSlob
Note that the Serbian Communists were equal opportunity murderers: they killed Catholic Croats and Catholic Albanians with the same enthusiasm as they did Muslims. So they, too, were "murderers of Christians".
15 posted on 12/02/2005 10:09:30 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: kronos77

O.J. has got nothing on these "innocents".


16 posted on 12/02/2005 10:33:36 PM PST by montag813
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To: Hunden

Yes, and the Communists oppressed and killed their own Christians as well.

Leftists are scum, didn't you know that?

The difference now is that NATO has joined in the fun and has supported the KLA continuing pogrom against the Serbian Christians while the remaining Communists are safe outside of Kosovo.


17 posted on 12/03/2005 6:52:08 AM PST by FormerLib (Kosova: "land stolen from Serbs and given to terrorist killers in a futile attempt to appease them.")
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To: kronos77

KLA rebels train in terrorist camps



By Jerry Seper
THE WASHINGTON TIMES May 4, 1999


Some members of the Kosovo Liberation Army, which has financed its war effort through the sale of heroin, were trained in terrorist camps run by international fugitive Osama bin Laden -- who is wanted in the 1998 bombing of two U.S. embassies in Africa that killed 224 persons, including 12 Americans.

The KLA members, embraced by the Clinton administration in NATO's 41-day bombing campaign to bring Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic to the bargaining table, were trained in secret camps in Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina and elsewhere, according to newly obtained intelligence reports.

The reports also show that the KLA has enlisted Islamic terrorists -- members of the Mujahideen --as soldiers in its ongoing conflict against Serbia, and that many already have been smuggled into Kosovo to join the fight.

Known to its countrymen as the Ushtria Clirimatare e Kosoves, the KLA has as many as 30,000 members, a number reportedly on the rise as a result of NATO's continuing bombing campaign. The group's leadership, including Agim Ceku, a former Croatian army brigadier general, has rapidly become a political and military force in the Balkans.

The intelligence reports document what is described as a "link" between bin Laden, the fugitive Saudi
millionaire, and the KLA --including a common staging area in Tropoje, Albania, a center for Islamic terrorists. The reports said bin Laden's organization, known as al-Qaeda, has both trained and financially supported the KLA.

Many border crossings into Kosovo by "foreign fighters" also have been documented and include veterans of the militant group Islamic Jihad from Bosnia, Chechnya and Afghanistan. Many of the crossings originated in neighboring Albania and, according to the reports, included parties of up to 50 men.

Jane's International Defense Review, a highly respected British Journal, reported in February that documents found last year on the body of a KLA member showed that he had escorted several volunteers into Kosovo, including more than a dozen Saudi Arabians. Each volunteer carried a passport identifying him as a Macedonian Albanian.

Bin Laden and his military commander, Mohammed Atef, were named in a federal indictment handed up in November in New York for the simultaneous explosions Aug. 7 at the U.S. embassies in Nairobi, Kenya, and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. The indictment accused the two men of directing the attacks, which injured more than 5,000 people.

The indictment said bin Laden, working through al-Qaeda, forged alliances with government officials in Iran, the National Islamic Front in the Sudan and an Iranian terrorist organization known as Hezbollah. He was indicted earlier this year by a federal grand jury in New York for his suspected terrorist activities.

The al-Qaeda is believed to have targeted U.S. embassies and American soldiers stationed in Saudi Arabia and Somalia. The organization also is accused of housing and training terrorists, and of raising money to support their causes.

The State Department, along with other federal agencies, offered a $5 million reward last year for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the two men. Mr. Clinton ordered a retaliatory attack on training bases controlled by bin Laden in Afghanistan and a chemical factory near Khartoum, Sudan, after the bombings.

Last year, while State Department officials labeled the KLA a terrorist organization, saying it bankrolled its operations with proceeds from the heroin trade and from loans from known terrorists like bin Laden, the department listed the group as an "insurgency" organization in its official reports. The officials charged that the KLA used terrorist tactics to assault Serbian and ethnic Albanian civilians in a campaign to achieve independence.

The KLA's involvement in drug smuggling as a means of raising funds for weapons is long-standing. Intelligence documents show it has aligned itself with an extensive organized crime network in Albania that smuggles heroin to buyers throughout Western Europe and the United States. Drug agents in five countries believe the cartel is one of the most powerful heroin smuggling organizations in the world.

The documents show heroin and some cocaine is moved over land and sea from Turkey through Bulgaria, Greece and Yugoslavia to Western Europe and elsewhere. The circuit has become known as the "Balkan Route."

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration said in a recent report that drug smuggling organizations composed of Kosovo's ethnic Albanians were considered "second only to Turkish gangs as the predominant heroin smugglers along the Balkan Route."

Greek Interpol representatives have called Kosovo's ethnic Albanians "the primary sources of supply for cocaine and heroin in that country."

France's Geopolitical Observatory of Drugs said the KLA was a key player in the rapidly expanding drugs-for-arms business and helped transport $2 billion in drugs a year into Western Europe.

German drug agents said $1.5 billion in drug profits is laundered annually by Kosovo smugglers, through as many as 200 private banks or currency-exchange offices.
Jane's Intelligence Review estimated in March that drug sales could have netted the KLA profits in the "high tens of millions of dollars." It said the KLA had rearmed itself for a spring offensive with the aid of drug money, along with donations from Albanians in Western Europe and the United States.







18 posted on 12/03/2005 6:59:23 AM PST by kabar
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To: FormerLib

Did you think for a moment that the humanists in the Hague would convict an Islamic of murdering subhuman Orthodox Christians?


19 posted on 12/03/2005 12:27:12 PM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: ValenB4; anonymoussierra; zagor-te-nej; Freelance Warrior; kedr; Sober 4 Today; BrooklynGOP; ...

ping


20 posted on 12/03/2005 12:39:08 PM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: Hunden

So shall it be taken that you approve of Islamics being freed by an EU humanist court for crimes against Christians? In which case, may I take the pleasure of suggesting the Democratic Underground for other like minded individuals.


21 posted on 12/03/2005 12:41:58 PM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: Hunden

Oh, I see you're from France, well enjoy being a Dhimmi in your future Caliphant.


22 posted on 12/03/2005 12:42:38 PM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: FormerLib

Hunden is from France, they'll get the fruits of Islam soon enough, if he's not one of those fruit bringers as is.


23 posted on 12/03/2005 12:43:34 PM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: FormerLib
"Justice will come to Kosovo along with the peace that the Serb Army will bring."

Amen!!!

ELEUQERIA H QANATOS!

24 posted on 12/03/2005 12:53:10 PM PST by Kolokotronis (Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!)
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To: jb6

That explains everything! He just HATES the idea that someone showed how the Muslims can be stopped and he knows his fellow countrycowards will never stand up.

25 posted on 12/03/2005 4:01:55 PM PST by FormerLib (Kosova: "land stolen from Serbs and given to terrorist killers in a futile attempt to appease them.")
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To: jb6

The difference is that the Muslims are the invaders in France, while the Serbs are the invaders in Kosovo.

Kosovo belongs to the Albanians like France belongs to the French. The Albanians are, by far, the first inhabitants of Kosovo, and Kosovo is even more Albanian than France is French

That is why I must say "Kosovo to the Kosovars" if I want to be able to say "France to the French".

If you wish to apply the alternative political principle, that the Serbs have a right to murder and to steal because they have the "right" religion, what distinguishes them from the Islamofascists?

— Maybe that THEIR professed religion expressedly forbids doing that?


26 posted on 12/03/2005 10:55:25 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Kolokotronis
As the opponents of Milosevic discovered to their dismay when they tried to stage a rally in Greece, a larger proportion of Serbo-fascists may be found among the Greeks than among the Serbs themselves.

As Chip Gagnon has extensively documented, a majority of the Serbs consistently opposed the wars of conquest and extermination waged in their name by their Communist leadership (http://www.ithaca.edu/gagnon/articles/book/index.htm).

On the other hand, as Greek journalist Takis Michas has revealed, the Greeks were overwhelmingly rooting for the mass murder of the Bosniaks, which they aided and abetted, as well as for the extermination attempt on the Kosovars.

Michas has also revealed that the Greek government had proposed to Milosevic to carve-up the Republic of Macedonia between Serbia and Greece in 1993, although the Slavic Macedonians are Orthodox Christians who speak a Bulgarian dialect, while there are almost no Serbs or Greeks in Macedonia. (http://www.tamu.edu/upress/BOOKS/2002/michas.htm).

Besides that, of course, the Greeks know almost nothing about the former Yugoslavia. Even worse, since they only believe their co-religionists tell them, their ignorance is compounded by a deep-seated delusion of knowledge.

Another feature of all those self-appointed "Orthodox defenders of Christianity" is that they hate the other Christians — especially the Catholics — even more than they hate the Muslims. When faced with a threat from both, the Russians chose to submit to the Muslim Tatars rather than the Catholic Poles; and in 1390 the Serbs voluntarily agreed to become vassals of the Ottomans as a protection against Catholic Hungary.

And it was as a faithful ally of Sultan Bâyezit that Stefan Lazarevic, the son of the Serbian knez Lazar killed at the Battle of Kosovo, ensured the defeat of the Christian crusade led by Sigismund of Luxemburg, King of Hungary, at the Battle of Nicopolis in 1396 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Nicopolis).

27 posted on 12/03/2005 11:37:32 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: kabar
The alleged link between the KLA and islamo-fascists has never been proved and most of the "intelligence" cited in this article is wrong. The training camps of the KLA were in Albania, never in Bosnia nor in Afghanistan. Mafiosi have no country and there is brotherhood and unity between all nationalities among drug smugglers. Planes of the Yugoslav Army were also used to ferry heroin and a large package of heroin, unaccounted for, was found in a safe at the MUP (Interior Ministry) in belgrade when Milosevic was overthrown. The few Kosovar Albanians who engage in such trade succeed more than others in Europe is because they are more enterprising and poor, while their family structures promote solidarity and secrecy. Besides, the main reason why illicit activities are more developed in Kosovo than they should (in spite of being no more so than in any other European country) is that Milosevic destroyed the local police in 1990 to reassert the alleged "rights" of Serbia over the country.
28 posted on 12/04/2005 12:00:24 AM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Hunden

The Wall Street Journal Europe, November 01, 2001
Al Qaeda´s Balkan Links

November 1, 2001

by Marcia Christoff Kurop

The Balkans´ uncharacteristically silent exit from the world stage as the most prominent international hot spot of the last decade belies its status as a major recruiting and training center of Osama bin Laden´s al Qaeda network. By feeding off the region´s impoverished republics and taking root in the unsettled diplomatic aftermath of the Bosnia and Kosovo conflicts, al Qaeda, along with Iranian Revolutionary Guard-sponsored terrorists, have burrowed their way into Europe´s backyard.

For the past 10 years, the most senior leaders of al Qaeda have visited the Balkans, including bin Laden himself on three occasions between 1994 and 1996. The Egyptian surgeon turned terrorist leader Ayman Al-Zawahiri has operated terrorist training camps, weapons of mass destruction factories and money-laundering and drug-trading networks throughout Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Turkey and Bosnia. This has gone on for a decade. Many recruits to the Balkan wars came originally from Chechnya, a jihad in which Al Qaeda has also played a part.

These activities have been exhaustively researched by Yossef Bodansky, the former director of the U.S. House of Representatives´ Task Force on Terrorism and Unconventional Warfare. The February testimony of an Islamist ringleader associated with the East Africa bombings have also helped throw light on these actions.

They have however been disguised under the cover of dozens of "humanitarian" agencies spread throughout Bosnia, Kosovo and Albania. Funding has come from now-defunct banks such as the Albanian-Arab Islamic Bank and from bin Laden´s so-called Advisory and Reformation Committee. One of his largest Islamist front agencies, it was established in London in 1994.

Narco-Jihad Culture

The overnight rise of heroin trafficking through Kosovo -- now the most important Balkan route between Southeast Asia and Europe after Turkey -- helped also to fund terrorist activity directly associated with al Qaeda and the Iranian Revolutionary Guard. Opium poppies, which barely existed in the Balkans before 1995, have become the No. 1 drug cultivated in the Balkans after marijuana. Operatives of two al Qaeda-sponsored Islamist cells who were arrested in Bosnia on Oct. 23 were linked to the heroin trade, underscoring the narco-jihad culture of today´s post-war Balkans.

These drug rings in turn form part of an estimated $8 billion a year Taliban annual income from global drug trafficking, predominantly in heroin. According to Mr. Bodansky, the terrorism expert, bin Laden administers much of that trade through Russian mafia groups for a commission of 10% to 15% -- or around $1 billion annually.

The settling of Afghan-trained mujahideen in the Balkans began around 1992, when recruits were brought into Bosnia by the ruling Islamic party of Bosnia, the Party of Democratic Action, from Chechnya, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan, as well as Italy, Germany and Turkey. They were all given journalists´ credentials to avoid explicit detection by the West. Others were married immediately to Bosnian Muslim women and incorporated into regular army ranks.

Intelligence services of the Nordic-Polish SFOR (previously IFOR) sector alerted the U.S. of their presence in 1992 while the number of mujahideen operating in Bosnia alone continued to grow from a few hundred to around 6,000 in 1995. Though the Clinton administration had been briefed extensively by the State Department in 1993 on the growing Islamist threat in former Yugoslavia, little was done to follow through.

The Bosnian Embassy in Vienna issued a passport to bin Laden in 1993, according to various reports in the Yugoslav press at the time. The reports add that bin Laden then visited a terrorist camp in Zenica, Bosnia in 1994. The Bosnian government denies all of this, but admits that some passport records have been lost. Around that time, bin Laden directed al Qaeda "senior commanders" to incorporate the Balkans into an complete southeastern approach to Europe, an area stretching from the Caucasus to Italy. Al Zawahiri, the Egyptian surgeon reputed to be the second in command of the entire al Qaeda network, headed up this southeastern frontline.

By 1994, major Balkan terrorist training camps included Zenica, and Malisevo and Mitrovica in Kosovo. Elaborate command-and-control centers were further established in Croatia, and Tetovo, Macedonia as well as around Sofia, Bulgaria, according to the U.S. Congress´s task force on terrorism. In Albania, the main training camp included even the property of former Albanian premier Sali Berisha in Tropje, Albania, who was then very close to the Kosovo Liberation Army.

Not even stalwart NATO ally Turkey escaped the network. Areas beyond government control were also visited by bin Laden in 1996 according to London-based Jane´s Intelligence Review. The government has been battling two terrorist groups: Jund al Islam, whose assassinated Syrian leader was one of bin Laden´s closets confidantes, and the Kurdish PKK, whose leader, Abdullah Ocalan, merged his group´s activities with those of Iran´s Hezbollah in 1998.

Furthermore, as revealed in the February 2001 East Africa bombing trial testimony of Jamal al Fadl -- an al Qaeda operative in charge of weapons development in Sudan -- uranium used in "dirty bombs" that release lethal radioactive material, had been tested in 1994 by members of the Sudan-based Islamic National Front in the town of Hilat Koko, in Turkish-held northern Cyprus. Cyprus, both its north and southern sides, has also become a center for offshore money laundering by Arab banks fronting al Qaeda funds into the Balkans. The CIA puts al Qaeda´s specific Balkan-directed funds -- those tied to the "humanitarian" agencies and local banks and not explicitly counting the significant drug profits added to that -- at around $500 million to $700 million between 1992 and 1998.

So where was the U.S. in all this? It was not until 1995 that the Clinton administration was forced to start pursuing the Islamist network in the Balkans. Not quite a month after the Dayton accords had been signed in November 1995, an influx of Iranian arms came into Bosnia with the apparent tacit approval of the administration, in violation of U.N. sanctions. While publicly pressing Bosnian President Alia Izebegovic to purge remaining Islamist elements, the administration was loath to confront Sarajevo and Tehran over their presence.

Instead, Islamist groups went quietly underground as the windfall of weapons landed in their hands. They later joined up with a new Islamist center in Sofia established as a kind of rear guard by the al Zawahiri. Following the Zagreb arrest and extradition of renowned Egyptian militant Faud Qassim, an al Zawahiri favorite, the Sofia-based militants planned the deployment in Bosnia of terrorists capable of planning and leading possible major terrorist strikes against U.S. and SFOR facilities, according to al Fadl´s testimony to the House Task Force on Terrorism.

Islamist infiltration of the Kosovo Liberation Army advanced, meanwhile. Bin Laden is said to have visited Albania in 1996 and 1997, according to the murder-trial testimony of an Algerian-born French national, Claude Kader, himself an Afghanistan-trained mujahideen fronting at the Albanian-Arab Islamic Bank. He recruited some Albanians to fight with the KLA in Kosovo, according to the Paris-based Observatoire Geopolitique des Drogues.

Controversial Relationship

By early 1998 the U.S. had already entered into its controversial relationship with the KLA to help fight off Serbian oppression of that province. While in February the U.S. gave into KLA demands to remove it from the State Department´s terrorism list, the gesture amounted to little. That summer the CIA and CIA-modernized Albanian intelligence (SHIK) were engaged in one of the largest seizures of Islamic Jihad cells operating in Kosovo.

Fearing terrorist reprisal from al Qaeda, the U.S. temporarily closed its embassy in Tirana and a trip to Albania by then Defense Secretary William Cohen was canceled out of fear of an assassination attempt. Meanwhile, Albanian separatism in Kosovo and Metohija was formally characterized as a "jihad" in October 1998 at an annual international Islamic conference in Pakistan.

Nonetheless, the 25,000 strong KLA continued to receive official NATO/U.S. arms and training support and, at the talks in Rambouillet, France, then Secretary of State Madeleine Albright shook hands with "freedom fighter" Hashim Thaci, a KLA leader. As this was taking place, Europol (the European Police Organization based in The Hague) was preparing a scathing report on the connection between the KLA and international drug gangs. Even Robert Gelbard, America´s special envoy to Bosnia, officially described the KLA as Islamic terrorists.

With the future status of Kosovo still in question, the only real development that may be said to be taking place there is the rise of Wahhabi Islam -- the puritanical Saudi variety favored by bin Laden -- and the fastest growing variety of Islam in the Balkans. Today, in general, the Balkans are left without the money, political resources, or institutional strength to fight a war on terrorism. And that, for the Balkan Islamists, is a Godsend.


29 posted on 12/04/2005 5:50:27 AM PST by kabar
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To: Hunden; FormerLib; Cronos
while the Serbs are the invaders in Kosovo.

Then you really don't know your history. The Albanians, an Illerian people came from eastern Turkey, bordering modern day Georgia (another Illerian people) where they used to live in a country called Albania. Then they were forced out and settled in modern day Croatia until being forced out by the proto-Croats and their German masters. They settled in Albania and were hemmed in by the Serbian kingdoms of Bosnia, Serbia, Chorni Gori (MontiNegro), and Macedonia and the Byzantines. They converted to islam under the turks and were allowed by the Turks to colonize surrounding Christian areas.

Under the Nazis and Fascist Italians, Albanian immigrants came into Kosovo and helped exterminate resisting Serbian villages. Tito further allowed them to settle to displace the majority Serbs. That's why the Serbian churches that are being blown up right under the EU noses and with EU approval are over 1,200 years old. They are, or were, UN Heritage Sites that the evil, corrupt and anti-Christian EU has allowed the Muslims to destroy. I congratulate France as one of the founding fathers of the EU on their great accomplishment. Just don't cry when Notre-Dame has a mosque and 5 daily prayer services to Mecca and catholic statues are all toppled as sacrilege. The French are just as guilty for allowing Islamics into Europe and will get the whirlwind. So defend the Islamics all you want, you'll get yours from them in the end.

30 posted on 12/04/2005 9:16:22 AM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: Hunden
If you're lucky, maybe the Normans will save France once again, maybe.


31 posted on 12/04/2005 9:23:18 AM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: Hunden
Serbian Lands, 10th Centuary, now tell me again who the invaders are.


32 posted on 12/04/2005 9:30:43 AM PST by jb6 (The Atheist/Pagan mind, a quandary wrapped in egoism and served with a side order of self importance)
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To: kronos77; jb6

"Many feel that the court ruling, despite confirming that horrific individual crimes were committed, vindicates the KLA as an organisation."

Anything wrong with that sentence?

So in Abu Ghraib humiliation of a few prisoners results in cries by the whole world against the entire US military's treatment of Muslims, but widespread Muslim KLA "horrific crimes" including real torture and killing of prisoners results in acquittal.

The Hague is as good as the UN.


33 posted on 12/04/2005 9:32:43 AM PST by dervish (no excuses)
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To: Hunden

"That is why I must say "Kosovo to the Kosovars" if I want to be able to say "France to the French". "

So you endorse ethnic cleansing?


34 posted on 12/04/2005 9:43:30 AM PST by dervish (no excuses)
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To: Hunden; FormerLib; kosta50; Cronos; jb6; dervish

"Greek journalist Takis Michas"

Michas is a Euroweasel if ever there was one. We know his type as well here in the States as they do in Greece. He is a man obsessed with hatred of himself and his own country.


35 posted on 12/04/2005 10:25:48 AM PST by Kolokotronis (Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!)
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To: kronos77; FormerLib; jb6; Kolokotronis
IWP is an anti-Serb, pro-Albanian organization with zero credibility. Just look at the sentence "Limaj, who held a senior role in the guerrilla army which helped drive Belgrade security forces out of Kosovo, gained a high profile as a politician in the wake of the conflict."

This is journalistic trash. The KLA did nothing to drive the Serbian army our of Kosovo. It did a great deal to ethnically cleanse the Province with the help of the NATO allies who looked the other way and, according to Bill Clinton, even could be "understood" in doing so.

What caused the Serb army to withdraw from Kosovo was a cease-fire agreement and a UN resolution that has been ignored ever since. This cease-fire agreement (which foresaw eventual return of Serb forces to Kosovo) was brought on by two factors: (1) relentless and barbaric bombing of Serbia's military AND civilian primarily by the US, and to a smaller extent by its puppet European allies, and (2) by the realization that the Serb army was intact and ready to engage and inflict unbearable causalities on the NATO ground forces had they entered without cease-fire. This is all documented by NATO commanders who came to Kosovo following the cease-fire agreement and the UN Resolution.

They based their decision on the fact of intelligence corroborated by the actual withdrawl, of Serbia's capacity in Kosovo: it hardly touched by the a 70-plus day bombing campaign. Historcial fact is that the Serb forces withdrew from Kosovo with their flags, in perfect order and -- accroding to one NATO high ranking officer who watched it -- in "inspection-ready condition." All their equipment was clean and fully operational. This would harldy qualify as being "driven out" let alone by a group of Islamofascist Albanian thugs comprising the KLA.

Serb forces have shown an incredible degree of warfare smarts during the campaign -- fooling NATO bombers with fake targets and even managing to shoot down one Stealth Bomber using basic optical principles, smart baiting to kaie it visible to the radar, forcing to fly below the cloud cover, and finishing it off with good-old fashioned conventional anti-aircraft fire. Low tech-high IQ always wins.

Kosovo's status may be finalized -- for now, even with an independence of sorts. But the good thing about the changing world is that nothing remains the same, except love. And Serbs love Kosovo more than anyone else does.

36 posted on 12/04/2005 5:27:03 PM PST by kosta50 (Eastern Orthodoxy is pure Christianity)
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To: kabar
"Marcia Kurop's Nov. 1 article ("AI. Qaeda's Balkan Links") constitutes a virtual catalogue of disinformational chestnuts recycled from the Serbian and Serbian-influenced press over the past decade.

"Most objectionable among many unsubstantiated assertions in this piece is the revival of a canard common during the Kosovo intervention: the claim. that the Kosovo Liberation Army was "Islamist."

"In reality, the KLA ineluded Catholics as well as Muslims and nonreligious people, at all levels of command. On December 29,  1999,  the Kosovapress news agency,  media arm of the former KLA,  issued an extremely strong comment  against the infiltration of Arab Muslim missionaries into Kosovo. The statement declared,

'For more than a century  civilized countries have separated religion from. the state ... [However], we now see attempts not†only in Kosovo but everywhere Albanians  live to introduce religion into public schools. . . Supplemental courses for children have been set up by foreign Islamic organizations who hide behind assistance programs.  Some radio programs, such as Radio Iliria in Vitia,  now offer nightly broadcasts in Arabic,  which nobody understands and which lead many to ask, are we in an Arab country?  It is time for Albanian mosques to be separated  from Arab connections and for Islam to be developed on the basis of Albanian culture and customs.'

"In summer 2000, Naim Maloku a former KLA commander,  took the initiative in demanding that Gulf state-funded "humanitarian organizations" active in Kosovo desist from  Islamic missionizing and concentrate exclusively on legitimate assistance projects. When a representative of the United Arab Emirates promised to build 200 mosques in Kosovo,  Mr. Maloku's answer was that Kosovar Albanians need economic investment,  not mosques. These are hardly the opinions  one expects from Islamists.

"Ametica desperately needs trustworthy Muslim allies.  We have a potential  to†recruit many of such in the Balkans. The highly colored propaganda assembled by Ms. Kurop  can only obstruct such an effort,  and would undermine,  rather than strengthen,  American policy.

(STEPHEN SCHWARTZ, "Islamic Allies in the Balkans',  LETTERS T0 THE EDITORS,  THE WALL STREET JOURNAL EUROPE.   November 6, 2001)

37 posted on 12/04/2005 8:49:15 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Kolokotronis
Not a word, of course, about the substance of Michas' statements. You wouldn't even care to refute him, since you actually approve of what he accuses the Greeks of doing, and which they actually did.

If you knew more about them, you would know how long the imperialists in Belgrade dreamt of taking Thessaloniki away from the Greeks. Only the accidents of history have prevented them from experiencing what kind of "Christian brethren" the Serbs really are.

38 posted on 12/04/2005 9:09:44 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Hunden
Kosovo belongs to the Albanians like France belongs to the French. The Albanians are, by far, the first inhabitants of Kosovo, and Kosovo is even more Albanian than France is French

Take your propaganda elsewhere. The certainty that you display is not backed up by the facts. Here's just one unbiased source: http://lamar.colostate.edu/~grjan/kosovohistory.html

The earliest known inhabitants of Kosovo were called Illyrians by both Greeks and Romans. Albanians today claim to be direct descendants of the Illyrians. Serbian scholars claim that Albanians appeared on the scene in the early Middle Ages as a result of intermarriage between nomadic shepherds and unromanized remnants of Illyrians and Dardanians from Thrace. Tracing such descents is difficult but the people living in the region before the arrival of the Serbs from the North are likely to have some genetic relationships to Albanians, but DNA data would be needed to definitively settle the claim, which in any case is hardly germane to the current conflict. The region was conquered by Alexander the Great 300 years before Christ and became part of the Roman province of Dardania in the 4th century A. D.

Notice that the facts of who the first inhabitants were is in dispute, not cut and dry like you said. Similarly, these disputed facts are not germaine, so your claim that Kosovo belongs to the Albanians based on their being the first inhabitants is not relevant.

Again, I say if you want to propagandize, find a different forum to do it on.

39 posted on 12/04/2005 9:39:48 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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To: jb6
That there was in ancient times a region in the Caucasus called "Albania" — modern-day Azerbaijan, east of Georgia — is a mere coincidence stemming from the fact that Alb- is an old indo-european root for "a high place", which gave their name to the "Alps". The name for "Albania" in Albanian is Shqipëria and the Albanian and Georgian languages have nothing in common.

The Illyrians, who were conquered by the Romans in the Second century B. C., were the first known inhabitants of the former Yugoslavia.

The only Serbs expelled during the Italian occupation of Kosovo were colonists who had been settled there on land stolen from the Albanians by the policy of ethnic cleansing imposed by the Yugoslav government before the war. Then, the only Albanians who had a reason to come there were Kosovars who had been expelled under that policy, a policy which had decreased the proportion of Albanians there from two thirds to just more than one half.

That policy was reneved after the war by Tito's right hand, Aleksandar Rankovic, until he was sacked in 1966. But then it could only mitigate the demographic growth of the Albanians in Kosovo, who remained an absolute majority there.

The Serb churches which have been destroyed in Kosovo cannot be more than seven centuries old, since the Serbs first invaded Kosovo during the 13th century. Albanians target them for the same reason they attack the Serbs themselves:  because, as evidenced by Balkan scholars Andrew Herscher and András Riedlmayer

"Kosovo's Serbian Orthodox buildings — both surviving medieval monuments and the products of twentieth-century  church construction programs have served as proxy for a Serb population to substantiate Serbian state sovereignty [claims] over Kosovo" http://www.bosnia.org.uk/bosrep/report_format.cfm?articleid=796&reportid=151

40 posted on 12/04/2005 9:44:21 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Hunden
Besides, the main reason why illicit activities are more developed in Kosovo than they should (in spite of being no more so than in any other European country) is that Milosevic destroyed the local police in 1990 to reassert the alleged "rights" of Serbia over the country.

Propaganda again. Milosevic's taking control of Kosovo had little or nothing to do with the crime in Kosovo. It of course led to violence as described in the link I gave you. But there is no indication that Milosevic's actions led to more crime except to the extent that seperatists engaged in illicit activities while fighting the Serb forces.

41 posted on 12/04/2005 9:51:04 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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To: Hunden; jb6
The only Serbs expelled during the Italian occupation of Kosovo were colonists who had been settled there on land stolen from the Albanians by the policy of ethnic cleansing imposed by the Yugoslav government before the war.

Propaganda again. Note the word "only". Serbs took land illegally from Albanians before the war and some of those Serbs were expelled in WWII. But WWII also brought an influx of 100,000 Albanians into Kosovo while Serbia was occupied by Germany. That influx was certainly greater than what was necessary to repopulate the Serb-appropriated lands. And as the link I gave you states: Serbs (meaning all Serbs) were harassed and attacked by the occupying Albanians.

42 posted on 12/04/2005 9:58:58 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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To: Hunden; FormerLib; kronos77
You are dealing with a group of propagandists with a foreign agenda -- and an un-American relationship to the truth.

I admit there is propaganda on both sides. But your entire set of postings in this thread and some in other threads are propaganda. Hunden, if you feel you can only contribute the same propaganda on this topic, I suggest you take it to another forum and contribute here only on non-Yugoslavia threads.

43 posted on 12/04/2005 10:03:28 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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To: palmer
The only reason anyone still doubts that the Albanians descend from the Illyrians is that such a truth refutes the claims of two powerful, local imperialisms.

— That of the Serbs, who sometimes have the gall to say that they were the first inhabitants of Kosovo whereas they are only its third known invaders.

— That of the Romanians, who know that their language is related to Albanian, and want to claim as their ancestors the Dacians, a Thracian tribe north of the Danube, notably to bolster their territorial claims on Transylvania.

You didn't mention the Thracian thesis, dear to 19th century balkanologist Gustav Weigand, but it is the only alternative to the claim that the Albanians are indeed the descendants of the Illyrians. Or used to be, since it is now established that the Bessi, the only Thracian tribe which had retained its language in the 6th century, were exposed to Christianity in their own language, whereas it is obvious that the proto-Albanians received it in Latin.

There is much more evidence, notably archaeologic, that the Illyrians were indeed the ancestors of the Albanians, and those who deny it now are acting in bad faith.

Now if you consider first ownership to be irrelevant to the issue of legitimate property, it only proves that you are a bad political philosopher as well as an ignorant in Balkan history. The fact that I am not does not make me a propagandist: it only enables me to refute you without using any documentation. To paraphrase your arrogant formula: take your incompetence elsewhere. What is wrong about knowing what one is talking about?

44 posted on 12/04/2005 10:15:11 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Hunden
Now if you consider first ownership to be irrelevant to the issue of legitimate property, it only proves that you are a bad political philosopher as well as an ignorant in Balkan history.

I admit I am not well versed in ancient Balkan history which is why I provided you with a link. Here it is again: http://lamar.colostate.edu/~grjan/kosovohistory.html There are many other similarly unbiased sources available.

take your incompetence elsewhere

I don't need to be competent to recognize propaganda and I will continue to point it out when you post it. If you choose to debate this topic (which I advise against since you seem to be thoroughly biased), please do so in a more respectful manner rather than labelling people you disagree with as ignorant. Not just me in this thread, but others in other threads. I await your apology.

45 posted on 12/04/2005 10:26:32 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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To: palmer
You are right to say that the Serbs and Montenegrins, expelled from Kosovo were not all colonists, only a majority of them. Estimates range from an over-modest 30,000 to an exaggerated 100,000. A senior German official, Hermann Neubacher, put it at 40,000, which is less than the number of colonists who had come to Kosovo by the late 1930s. Contrary to a Serb myth, Tito allowed some of these to come back after the war..

On the other hand, in your confusion of even-handedness with objectivity, you fall once again for a pure lie of Serb propaganda: no evidence of any mass Albanian migration during the war can be found in any of the documents of the occupying powers. Only a few thousand people did move from Albania into Kosovo: some were officials brought in by the Italians or Germans, and the rest were Kosovars who had emigrated to Albania as a result of Belgrade's policy of ethnic cleansing during the inter-war years.

The Albanians from Albania had no reason to move into Kosovo, a disputed and already overcrowded area, before they came under the tyranny of Enver Hoxha (and after that, they couldn't. Like half of the Serb's lies, this one can be exposed by a mere few seconds' reflection upon its plausibility.

46 posted on 12/04/2005 10:49:30 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: jb6

Of course, I have alternative information.


47 posted on 12/04/2005 10:51:16 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: dervish
I am an advocate of property rights: the legitimate owners have the right to remain on their property, to invite whomever they please, and to expel intruders.

The judgement I cast on "ethnic cleansing" is therefore dependent on whom I deem to be the legitimate owners of the country.

Since the Kosovars had every right to live in Kosovo, and the Bosniaks in Bosnia, their forced expulsion was certainly criminal, and the attendant murders and plunder would have been in any case.

48 posted on 12/04/2005 11:04:35 PM PST by Hunden (Email)
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To: Hunden
no evidence of any mass Albanian migration during the war can be found in any of the documents of the occupying powers

Any why would there be? I assume the 100,000 figure came from Serbian sources who documented 70,000 refugees from Kosovo (and estimated 30,000 more went elsewhere or didn't register). Then they assumed that the 100,000 were replaced with Albanians unless there are other sources of documentation. But to simply point to lack of records in Germany and Italy is ridiculous. Did they document all the Jews and others that they killed?

The Albanians from Albania had no reason to move into Kosovo

They made it part of Greater Albania which could only be realized by military force and changing the majority from Serbian to Albanian which is what happened during WWII.

49 posted on 12/04/2005 11:14:58 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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To: Hunden; dervish
The judgement I cast on "ethnic cleansing" is therefore dependent on whom I deem to be the legitimate owners of the country.

Therefore you wouldn't have a problem with the legitimate owners of the American Southwest, descendants of hispanics and indians, performing ethnic cleansing on the white minority there.

50 posted on 12/04/2005 11:18:15 PM PST by palmer (Money problems do not come from a lack of money, but from living an excessive, unrealistic lifestyle)
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