Jerusalem English Language Lecture and Conference Series
Thursday, February 1, 2007
(program in English)
Kosovo and Jerusalem:
The Role of the "International Community"
in Dismantling Yugoslavia and Its Parallels in
Ongoing Efforts to Destroy Israel
MR. CHAIM PEKOVIC
Mr. Pekovic immigrated to Eretz Yisrael from Belgrade in 1990
Kosovo and Jerusalem:
The Role of the "International Community" in Dismantling Yugoslavia
and Its Parallels in Ongoing Efforts to Destroy Israel
by Mr. Chaim Pekovic
Yugoslavia rose from its World War Two Nazi German occupation to defeat post-occupation ustashe (Croatian Nazis), balists (Albanian fascists) and chetniks (Serbian royalists).
Defeated Croatian Nazis, Albanian fascists and Serbian royalist forces fled Yugoslavia and found refugee in various Western countries. Host governments welcomed these Nazis, fascists and royalists as "political refugees" who had struggled for "freedom" and "democracy" against Communism.
Behind these slogans were other Western interests, primarily the global economical interests of a growing European Union which viewed Yugoslavia, 284,000 square kilometers in size, as rich in natural and human resources and as a potential rival.
Weakened Yugoslavia, with its developed infrastructure, would be a perfect source of cheap labor for Western economies. Also, the Western world has great interest in the Muslim and Arab worlds. Former Yugoslavia, with large Muslim populations in Bosnia and Herzegovina and in Kosovo, presented an opportunity for improving Western-Islamic and Arab relations by favoring Muslims in local Yugoslavian conflicts.
Israel, a regional military and economical power in conflict with Arab Muslim neighbors, finds itself in a position very similar to that of now defunct Yugoslavia.
The historical facts are the exact opposite.
The first Serbian state was formed on territories of today’s Kosovo and Metohia, Sand'ak and Northern Montenegro. After the Turkish conquest of Serbia, Turks settled a Muslim Albanian population in Kosovo to enforce Turkish power in the region. By the end of the Seventeenth Century, Serbians backed Austria in it’s wars against the Turkish Empire as a Christian Power about to liberate the Balkans from Turkish rule. Turkish authorities responded harshly and allowed Muslim Albanians to terrorize the Serbian population in Kosovo, which caused the flight of many Serbian refugees.
The Austrian Emperor invited Serbians to settle abandoned lands in Vojvodina and Eastern Croatia now known as Kraina to protect the Austrian Empire from Turkish invasion. The Serbs expelled from Kosovo moved to parts of Croatia that had been desolated in Turkish invasion and remained there until the 1995 expulsion.
Turkish sponsored Albanian attacks on Serbs in Kosovo caused many more Serbs to continue to flee. Attacks on Serbs continued throughout the Second World War and after Kosovo was granted autonomy by the Yugoslav constitution in 1974. This means that Albanians achieved a majority in Kosovo through terror and persecution.
Before the Turkish occupation, Bosnia and Herzegovina were settled by Orthodox Serbs and Catholic Croats. Turkish authorities encouraged conversion to Islam by giving Muslims tax exemptions. Many local Serbs and Croats converted to Islam. Their descendants represent the Muslim population of Bosnia and Herzegovina today.
In 1941 Nazi Germany and Italy, together with their allies, occupied Yugoslavia and established the puppet "Independent State of Croatia" on the territories of Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Srem. Kosovo become part of Italy's "Greater Albania". In both puppet states ustashi and balists began to exterminate the Serbian population. In the "Independent State of Croatia" the pro-Nazi regime murdered about million Serbs, almost the entire Jewish population and left alive only 500 Gipsies.
After the War, New Yugoslavia was founded on federative principles. The Croatian state was formed as a state of Croats and Serbians, while Bosnia and Herzegovina was formed as a state of Muslims, Serbs and Croats.
The Jewish People returned to reestablish ancient Israelite sovereignty in the Land of Israel. There was never Arab sovereignty in any part of the Land of Israel. Today's "Palestinians" are descendants of Arabs who immigrated to Turkish and then British Mandate Palestine, attracted by the developing Jewish economy. The Jewish State was formed as part of the U.N. partition plan after the terrible Holocaust that Jews suffered during the World War Two.
Serbian national spirit always resisted foreign diktats (this spirit cost Serbs countless dead in both World Wars). Serbs fought for justice, even if it did not concern Serbs, and rejected the use of force to settle disputes. Those two national characteristics led to confrontations with Western powers. Serbs were not favored by Western media, which expects persecuted peoples to act and cry in front of their cameras.
On the other side, Croats, and especially Muslims taught by Arabs, were experts in media manipulation. Western mass media demonized the Serbs, declaring them responsible for the Balkan conflicts of the 1990s.
Reality was different. All three sides, Croats, Muslims and Serbs, engaged in atrocities against civilian populations. Only those committed by Serbs were reported world wide. Outside the Balkans no one learned of ethnic cleansing in Eastern Bosnia (Bratunac district) where 22 Serbian villages were razed by Bosnian government troops. In Western Herzegovina Croats exterminated the Muslim and Serbian populations and even blew up the old bridge in Mostar.
Despite the fact that most of those convicted for war crimes by the International Court at the Hague were Muslims, only Serbs were only blamed for war crimes. Media bias against Serbs reached such extremes that Muslims succeeded to manipulate world media coverage to change the military situation through two staged incidents.
In the summer of 1992, a few months after the outbreak of war, a bomb blew up on Vasa Mickin Street in Sarajevo, killing people waiting in a bread line. Media cameras had been pre-positioned on the spot to record the incident. Serbs were immediately blamed for the crime despite the fact that no one could prove the shell was launched from Serbian positions around Sarajevo. This incident was used as an excuse to impose harsh economic sanctions on Yugoslavia in order to stop the Yugoslav government from helping the Bosnian Serbs.
In the summer of 1995, a similar incident took place in Sarajevo’s main market, called the Markale. A bomb exploded and killed people in a crowded market in front of numerous cameras that, again, were pre-positioned to record the incident. The Serbs were again immediately blamed for the crime despite the fact that, again, no one could prove the shell was launched from Serbian positions around Sarajevo. This incident was used as a pretext by N.A.T.O. forces to attack Serbs, paralize their communications and force them to create, against their will, a state shared with Muslims and Croats (who also preferred not be part of a united Bosnian state).
Anyone familiar with Middle East affairs immediately senses the same pattern of media manipulation that we witnessed in the Balkans reappearing in Gaza, and Kefar Kana in southern Lebanon, for example.
During 1995, the Croatian government began negotiations with Serbs about their integration into Croatia. During negotiations in the summer of 1995, the Croatian army backed by N.A.T.O. warplanes invaded Serbian territory, destroying Serbian missile units. The Croatian army advanced quickly, using Serbian prisoners of war as human shields.
This Croatian Army operation, called "Storm", succeeded in expelling almost the entire Serbian population. Long lines of refugees fled their homes while the "international community" remained silent. There were no sanctions against Croatia, no threats to Croatia to bring those refuges back. The "international community" silently supported Croatia's ethnic cleansing of Serbs.
After Bosnia and Herzegovina left the Yugoslav Federation in 1992, Bosnian Serbs in Bosnia and Herzegovina wanted to express their right to self-determination and to form an independent entity. They formed the Serbian Republic primarily on territories where they were the overwhelming majority (Eastern Bosnia, Western Bosnia called Bosanska, Krajina and Eastern Herzegovina).
Western powers wanted a united Bosnian state. In 1995 they forced Bosnian Serbs to sign a "peace agreement" in Dayton, Ohio, in which three entities were created, Muslims and Croats established a Federation and a Serbian Rebublic was established in confederation with Bosnia and Herzegovina.
After the signing of this agreement, of which the United States was a guarantor, the "international community" began to change the structure of Bosnia and Herzegovina step by step, removing it from the jurisdiction of the Serbian Republic.
These changes have now reached a critical point where Serbs cannot accept anymore a Federal Government, backed by the "international community", which urges "reform" of the police by placing them under the authority of a Federal Government, diminishing further the power of the Serbian Republic.
In both Croatia and Serbia Serbs continued to be denied rights of self-determination granted other people in the former Yugoslavia: Slovenes, Croats (except to Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina), Muslims, Albanians and Macedonians.
Over the past three centuries due to unrelenting pressure on the Serbian population, Albanians succeeded in becoming the majority in Kosovo.
In Kosovo itself there was never Albanian sovereignty, so creating an independent Albanian state in Kosovo has no legal or moral justification.
In the late 1990s, Albanians formed a military terrorist group called the K.L.A. (Kosovo Liberation Army). Its aim was separation from Yugoslavia. The K.L.A. began an uprising against Yugoslav authority on sovereign Yugoslav territory. No government in the world would tolerate the formation of independent military units on its territory, nor would it tolerate a separatist revolt. The Yugoslav army was sent to suppress this uprising, a perfectly legitimate move for a sovereign state.
N.A.T.O. used this as an excuse to attack Yugoslavia, even against the will of the United Nations. The N.A.T.O. attack was presented as a humanitarian intervention to protect the Albanian population against so-called Serbian genocide despite the fact that no Albanian was expelled and no Albanian village was destroyed before the N.A.T.O. attack.
Never before had N.A.T.O. attacked another state to protect an allegedly endangered minority, despite numerous opportunities to do so, for example to prevent Arab Muslim genocide against Christian and native religion Africans in southern Sudan; or to stop terrible atrocities in Ruanda.
The real reason for the N.A.T.O. attack was not "humanitarian". U.S. President Clinton was having political problems arising from his relations with Monica Levinski and he needed something to divert public attention from that.
For the Western World here was another opportunity to appease the Islamic world.
For N.A.T.O. this was an opportunity to test equipment and tactics (as Nazi Germany did in the 1936-1939 Spanish Civil War) in a big military exercise in preparation for future conflicts (such as an attack on Israel).
The N.A.T.O. attack ended with the withdrawal of the Yugoslav army from Kosovo and deployment of the U.N. K.F.O.R. which failed to protect the Serbian minority from Albanians.
N.A.T.O.'s so called "humanitarian mission"'' resulted in the further expulsion of Serbs from Kosovo and in the destruction of monasteries built in the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries, monasteries that were supposedly under U.N.E.S.C.O. protection.
Last year Montenegro conducted a vote on independence in a referendum in which a third of Montenegrin citizens were denied the right to vote. If those citizens, who live mostly in Serbia (which was still part of the same confederation when the "referendum" was held), were permitted to vote the results would be totally different.
The Montenegrin ruling party brought Albanians from abroad who had left Montenegro years ago. Their votes were crucial in wining the 55% majority needed to declare independence. The majority of Montenegrins were for a state union on a federal-confederate basis with Serbia. Such a crucial decision, on independence, was made without getting 50% of the votes of registered voters. The "international community" welcomed this referendum, the same one which would be overruled in any Western democracy as unconstitutional.
Those double standards were justified firstly by the claim that the aim is to overthrow Slobodan Milosevic and his tyranny. It is impossible to accept such a claim after N.A.T.O. bombing of Belgrade [Belgrade was bombed by Nazi Germany in the spring of 1941], the city which lead the anti-Milosevic struggle, the city in which demonstrations against Milosevic were daily.
The bombing of Belgrade could only help Milosevic consolidate his power. After Milosevic's fall, double standards were justified on the grounds of poor cooperation by Serbian authorities with the International Tribunal at the Hague, despite the fact that Serbian authorities allowed the extradition of Milosevic and gave up the opportunity to try Milosevic for crimes he had committed inside Serbia against Serbs during his oppressive rule. By this policy the entire Serbian people was collectively punished for what individuals did.
Double standards are not exclusive to former Yugoslavia. They are the rule of the game in the Israeli-Arab conflict. The "Palestinian Authority" was never condemned for its terrorist activities, its refusal to recognize Israel and to reach a peace agreement.
On the other hand, Israel is condemned when it defends itself, is threatened with war crime charges while the "Palestinian" side is never charged for war crimes with its use of human populations as human shields or for numerous terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians.
Again, the Western mass media will demonize the Serbs and prepare the ground for another international intervention on behalf of oppressed Muslims, again resulting in another ethnic cleansing of Serbs, this time from Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Creating economically dependant states in the Balkans will destabilize the region. It will encourage other separatist movements throughout the world (for example in Quebec, the Basque region, Catalonia, Flanders, the lands of the former Soviet Union, etc.) and lead to potential crises which could be unleashed by a coming global economic crisis.
About the Root and Branch Association, Ltd.
The Root and Branch Association, Ltd. (incorporated 1981) [www.rb.org.il], an all-volunteer, non-member organization, promotes cooperation between the State of Israel and other nations, and between B'nai Israel (Children of Israel) and B'nai Noach (Children of Noah) in the Land of Israel and abroad, to build a better world based on the universal Noahide Covenant and Seven Noahide Laws as revealed by the G-d of Israel to Noah and his family following the Flood and by G-d to Moses and the Children of Israel at Mount Sinai as recorded in the Bible and Jewish tradition.
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