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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

EDITORIAL: Russia Takes Sensible Line On Kosovo




Once again, as it prepares to bomb Serbia, NATO is trying to cast Russia in the role of the party pooper in the New World Order.


The West believes that airstrikes are the only way to stop the Serbs conducting their violent campaign to suppress separatist Albanians in the region of Kosovo. Yet Russia has refused to come to the party, threatening to use its veto in the UN


Security Council to block NATO's campaign.


To read the Western press, Russia's policy is just recalcitrant Cold War diplomacy. Russia, it is said, is only trying to score points against the United States and curry favor with pan-Slav nationalists at home. There is some truth in this. Russia should make its disgust with Serbian policies more clear.


But there is another motive for Russia's opposition to NATO: It just makes sense.


NATO will bomb but what then? The West has no political plan for Kosovo. Indeed, NATO is terrified of the emergence of an independent that could destabilize the whole region. NATO has neither the right nor the stomach to deploy in Kosovo the tens of thousands of troops and billions of dollars it would take to bring real peace to the region.


Instead, after the bombing, the Kosovo Albanians and the Serbs are supposed to sit down and agree on some form of autonomy in which the Serbs promise to be nice to their sworn enemies.


In reality, Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic will promise a fig leaf of autonomy and at the next convenient opportunity, he will start again.


All the West's antics will have done is to embolden the Kosovo Albanians to take on the Serbs, offering them the false hope that the West will underwrite their independence.


It may seem tough to just tell them that they are on their own but it is more humane than lying to them. A useful parallel is with U.S. promises to use air power to protect the Kurds from Saddam Hussein's Iraq after the Gulf War. The minority Kurds promptly rose up against Baghdad f only to be slaughtered.


The West invokes the memory of Bosnia to justify its actions but the lessons are highly ambivalent. The West remembers it years of inaction during the war but it should also remember what happened in Srebrenica in 1994 when it established a UN safe haven for Bosnian Moslems but failed to provide adequate land-based protection.


The Serbs bided their time and eventually murdered thousands of innocent people.