One of the supreme ironies of the “Global War on Terror” has been the consistency with which the US has pursued pro-jihadist foreign and military policies since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. Not even the spectacular carnage of 9/11 has shaken the resolve of the State Department, for example, to back Muslim demands against Christian Serbia in Kosovo. The US of course backed jihadis during the Balkan wars of the 1990s, first the Bosnians — allying ourselves with such Muslim luminaries as Alija Izetbegovic (see his Islamic Declaration if you still aren’t sure of his true sympathies) and Osama bin Laden (that’s “Mr bin Laden” if you ask the New York Times) — and later the KLA in Kosovo.
Slowly — haltingly — it seems that reality is beginning to catch up with US policy. Herewith the latest from the redoubtable Serge Trifkovic in Chronicles Magazine on US policy in Kosovo:
As we near the deadline of December 10 for the Contact Group “Troika’s” report on its attempts to negotiate a solution to the problem of Kosovo, the voices of reason in the United States are finally becoming more influential and more articulate than ever before. Over the past two weeks alone, John Bolton, Christian Science Monitor commentator David Young, and a host of prominent analysts meeting at a conference in Washington D.C. have warned that the U.S. policy in the Balkans is heading for the rocks.
On November 1 the Voice of America interviewed former U.S. Ambassador to the UN, John Bolton, about the future status of Kosovo. Mr. Bolton expressed the view that the State Department has conducted a consistently anti-Serbian policy for more than 15 years. Unfortunately, he said, this biased policy has continued even though there is no logical reason for it after the fall of Milosevic:
While Serbia is trying to establish an effective and functional democracy regarding human rights and other issues, the anti-Serbian policy has continued, especially with regard to Kosovo, where a decision in favor of its independence could only create other concerns. Such a decision could impact on the democracy in progress in Serbia, and the possibility that the Security Council would step beyond its authority, which would be very unfortunate. This is one of the numerous examples of behavior by the State Department, which is a problem the next President has to solve.
John Bolton is the most prominent former Administration official so far to be so outspoken about the U.S. policy in the former Yugoslavia. In his VoA interview he was adamant that the United States should not recognize any unilateral declaration of Kosovo independence:
Such a decision, which would be taken under threat of violence, would actually represent a way to reward bad behavior. The issue of Kosovo should be solved by two parties at the negotiation table . . . this is much better than to impose a solution on one side or the other, based on a wrong understanding of the situation.
Bolton added that the last thing we should do is to sow the seeds for future conflicts under the pressure of one side or the other. Of his new book, “Surrender Is Not an Option: Defending America at the United Nations and Abroad,” Bolton said it was focused on how the policy is actually formulated. He quoted a senior State Department official who told him that “if they knew how we formulate our foreign policy, Americans would be very dissatisfied.”
Indeed they would. Read it all.