Ivo Skoric on Sun, 14 Mar 1999 20:14:39 +0100 (CET)

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<nettime> Kosovo and what's related

The U.S. Congress passed a resolution allowing for deployment of American
ground troops in Kosovo. During the vote count C-SPAN provided for
listeners to call in. 90% of calls were Albanian or Serbian -American
viewers, which of course called for and against the deployment
respectively. Vote itself was a remarkable display of partisanship:
Republicans in general voted against. They sure came a long way since

The resolution is however worthless until the Serbs and Kosovo Albanians
decide to sign the Rambouillet agreement. Holbroke just failed to persuade
Milosevic to do so. Slobo kind of got encouraged with the Western
procrastination. And Albanians are very much for the agreement, but
signature somehow fails to materialize (frustrating that old chap Dole to
the point he got to whine about it on TV).  Recent reports say that the
KLA leader signed the agreement in secret. Signature however has yet to be
made public. 

Meanwhile the life in Kosovo unravels in the usual way: terrorist attacks,
army shelling, etc. 

Serbian army is particularly concerned about taking positions along the
roads that NATO troops may use to advance from Macedonia. 

Bulgaria entered the Balkans game: it recognized Macedonian as a separate
language and it gave Macedonia 150 tanks. The price:  Macedonian
government wrote off Macedonian minority in Bulgaria. They will be treated
as Bulgarian citizens from now on, withouth Macedonian interference.
Macedonian president (opposing political party to the government) went
steaming to the parliament and attacked the government decision. 

Bulgaria also subtly (or not so subtly) told Milosevic that it will host
NATO troops if necessary - to which announcement Seselj decided to declare
a war against Bulgaria. 

Being a part of Yugoslavia, Montenegro did not go as far, but with its
government decision not to oppose NATO, it went quite close to secession,
which alarmed the Yugoslav Army, and Second Army (which is stationed in
Montenegro) just announced that it would not support the Montenegrin
government decision (calling it: "too Slovenian"). 

In the meantime, formidable NATO troops suffered a heavy blow in Skopje -
5 Russian soldiers who work part time as waiters (I guess Russian army
does not pay awfully well) seriously kicked asses of 22 British soldiers
who were drunk and pissed them off in the bar where they work. 

While Kosovo agreement is still on the table, the arbitration for Brcko is
complete: Brcko is placed under special international supervision as a
district separated from both Bosnian entities. Serb and Bosnian interests
in Brcko run perpendicularly: Bosnia wants Brcko as a North-South corridor
and Serbia wants it as an East-West one. Before the war just 20% of
population was non-muslim: today that percentage is dramatically larger. 

Following the Brcko decision, president of Republika Srpska got fired by
Carlos Westendorp - the real regent of Bosnia (in the anticipation of his
opposition to the decision), which infuriated Serbs in RS. 

North from there, in Croatia, the president of certain soccer club
intimidates journalists like Hulk Hogan - only there is no acting
involved: it is for real. 

For other things Balkan go to: balkansnet.org


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