Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Religious leaders issue rare joint appeal for unity in rebuilding Kosovo

PRISTINA, Serbia-Montenegro (AP) - Kosovo's Christian, Jewish and Muslim religious leaders issued a rare joint appeal to their communities Wednesday to join in rebuilding religious monuments and lives shattered by the province's ethnic conflict.

The appeal came at the end of a meeting organized by Norwegian Church Aid that brought together representatives of the Serb Orthodox Church, the Roman Catholic Church and Kosovo's Islamic, Jewish and Evangelical communities.

In a joint statement, the leaders pleaded for the communities to "move towards an open future with interaction and profound responsibility for each other before God."

"In coming to terms with the past we acknowledge that all communities have suffered," it added. "We express sorrow for one another's suffering, praying that this suffering will no longer be a stumbling block."

The religious leaders committed to intensifying inter-religious dialogue and cooperation, as well as holding meetings between senior religious leaders, said the statement, issued by NCA.

The two-day meeting took place inside the NATO-guarded Patriarchate in the western town of Pec, and was held just before the continuation of U.N.-mediated talks on the province's future. There have been fears of an increase in tension between the communities during the talks, which are due to conclude at the end of 2006.

Kosovo's ethnic Albanian majority, which is predominantly Muslim, wants the province to become independent. Serbs, who are Orthodox Christian, insist that some links with Serbia must be retained.

The joint statement condemned the destruction of churches, mosques and cemeteries targeted during a crackdown by Serb forces on independence-seeking ethnic Albanians or in the war's aftermath when ethnic Albanian extremists attacked Serb religious sites.

The religious leaders appealed for their communities to join them in rebuilding "not only our religious sites, but also to rebuild our lives, our hearts and our minds," they said in their statement.

Kosovo has been run as a U.N. protectorate since mid-1999, when a NATO air war halted the Serb crackdown.

The province was the seat of the medieval Serbian state and the Serbian Orthodox Church. Serbs cherish it as the cradle of their history and culture.


NYoutlawyer said...

Fuck all clerics, whatever the denomination. Get real jobs.

NYoutlawyer said...

Read the truth, not cleric BS.

Read the following and then tell me about your puppet leader and what is truely happening in Kosovo:

Ex-Security Chief Blows Whistle on UN's Kosovo Mission
By Sherrie Gossett Staff Writer

( - Following five years of United Nations control and billions of dollars of international aid, Kosovo is a lawless region "owned" by the Albanian mafia, characterized by continuing ethnic cleansing and subject to increasing infiltration by al Qaeda-linked Muslim jihadists, according to a whistleblower interviewed by Cybercast News Service.

The U.N.'s repeated failure to act on received intelligence has allowed illegal paramilitary groups to flourish and engage in terrorist attacks aimed at destabilizing regional governments in the Balkans, said Thomas Gambill, a former security chief with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), self-described as the world's largest regional security agency.

Gambill was responsible for overseeing the eastern region of Gjilane in Kosovo from 1999 until 2004 under the authority of the U.N. His criticism comes as the United Nations prepares to launch final status talks on the troubled province of Kosovo, which has been a U.N. protectorate since North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) forces bombed Yugoslavia between March and May of 1999 to compel the Serb-dominated government of Slobodan Milosovic to withdraw its forces from Kosovo.

The U.S. mission in Kosovo alone cost $5.2 billion between June 1999 and the end of 2001, according to a report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

NATO bombing leads to Muslim retaliation

The NATO bombings were also launched in response to reports of large-scale ethnic cleansing of Kosovar Albanians by the Serbs. But as soon as the bombing campaign ended, ferocious, retaliatory ethnic cleansing allegedly took place with Albanians, who are predominantly Muslim, targeting Christian Serbs. The violence was witnessed and documented by the U.N. and OSCE.

Gambill shared hundreds of pages of U.N. and OSCE documents with Cybercast News Service, showing how the Serbs and other minorities were systematically and successfully targeted for removal from Kosovo.

Following the NATO bombing of Kosovo, American troops under NATO command were stationed in neighboring Macedonia and Albania while then-President Bill Clinton decided on the size of the U.S. contingent to be deployed in Kosovo. When U.S. troops entered the province in June 1999, the alleged retaliatory ethnic cleansing was already underway.

Incidents of sexual violence, torture, arson, murder, kidnapping, and verbal threats were allegedly widespread as part of an organized and successful campaign conducted "right under the U.N.'s nose," said Gambill.

Minorities targeted by ethnic Albanian extremists for expulsion or death included Serbs, Roma, Muslim Slavs, Turks and Croats.

Reports filed by the OSCE indicate that the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), which had been trained and supported by the Clinton administration, was predominantly responsible for the ethnic cleansing. In April 1999, congressional Republicans also promoted legislation seeking U.S. military aid for the KLA, causing Michael Radu of the Foreign Policy Institute to warn of the consequences of such a move.

Other armed extremist groups also participated in the ethnic cleansing, said Gambill.

The overall goal of the groups was the creation of an ethnically pure state that included Albania, Kosovo and parts of Serbia, Montenegro and Macedonia "They will push for more. That is the plan. It's called Greater Albania," said Gambill.

OSCE documents reveal that elderly Serbs who were unable to flee were threatened and women were thrown down staircases. Others were tortured, beaten and murdered. Some elderly Serbs fled to monasteries for protection, but the monasteries were later attacked as well, including as recently as March of 2004, according to the OSCE documents

Entire villages emptied in the wake of large-scale arson and looting. OSCE documents describe "massive population movements" by displaced minorities after so many of their homes were set on fire, that one region of Kosovo resembled "a war zone."

An OSCE report notes that in one particular month of 1999 ethnic-related crimes dipped, but the report adds that it is unclear if that was due to the success of NATO's KFOR (Kosovo Force) or simply because there were relatively few Serbs left.

After six months of NATO presence, the violence aimed at the Serbs became less frequent, though grenade attacks, drive-by shootings and abductions continued as weekly occurrences for the next five years, according to Gambill. "Even as of a couple of weeks ago, it hasn't stopped," he added.

The perpetrators of ethnic violence were emboldened by a lack of functioning local police or a judiciary system, Gambill said. Even now, the "good cops" are threatened by former KLA members, who are also on the police forces. "One female cop, she was a real Serpico," recalls Gambill. "She wouldn't give up an investigation after being threatened. She was killed soon after being warned."

Minorities are still being denied health care by Albanian medical professionals who quickly dominated the health care profession following the NATO bombing, Gambill said. He recounted an incident in which a Serb doctor was taken behind a building and shot in the back of the head. "Sometimes they had to take wounded Kosovar Serbs all the way to Serbia for medical aid," said Gambill.

'Don't Rock the Boat'

Gambill told Cybercast News Service that he was most frustrated by what he saw as apathy on the part of the U.N. Mission in Kosovo and OSCE, despite what he described as lower-level officials who "worked really hard and cared about the mission.

"There was a don't-rock-the-boat atmosphere," Gambill explained. "Many people deployed to the region simply wanted to make their hefty pay and have a good time vacationing in Greece. They didn't want any 'problems' on their watch."

Aggressive patrols were discouraged, Gambill said, for fear that any ensuing firefights would give the appearance that KFOR forces did not have control of the area.

"It was all P.C. (politically correct). People were afraid to say anything," said Gambill, adding that those who spoke out on serious issues were subjected to transfers or other reprisals. "No one seems to want to listen or make waves. They said 'I can't do anything to change the system, so why speak out?'"

The result of such an attitude, Gambill said, is that "every time there is an attack against a Serb, it's always described as an 'isolated case' -- an event swept under the rug, so to speak."

Gambill said his warnings and reports on grave security threats were often met with a condescending attitude and even laughter. During a briefing given at the end of 2000 to OSCE delegates from Vienna, Austria, Gambill identified illegal paramilitary groups operating in the Balkans in violation of U.N. Security Council resolution 1244.

Albanian mafia flourishes

At the same briefing, Gambill said he tried to explain the regional mafia structure, however, U.S. and Russian delegates in the audience complained about the content of Gambill's speech. As a result, he said, OSCE headquarters in Pristina sent a message to Gambill's regional superiors with the message, "Shut Tom up."
"You couldn't get up in front of meetings and say, 'We've lost control of [Kosovo], the mafia controls it,'" said Gambill. "But they do. They run the damn place."

Gambill cited OSCE data that showed 42 mafia leaders had moved into Kosovo in the wake of the NATO bombing in order to set up criminal organizations. They continued to thrive despite efforts to establish mature law enforcement operations in the province, he said.

"Drug smuggling, counterfeiting, weapons, human trafficking were all booming when I was there," said Gambill. He also alleged that high-level mafia leaders are in senior political positions.

"Good cops," who want to target the corruption are "under threat," said Gambill, adding that the Albanian mafia maintains ties with Russian, Serbian, Croatian and Italian mafia organizations to further their common agendas.

Gambill also warned his U.N. superiors that the newly formed paramilitary group, the Albanian National Army, was "highly dangerous and skilled" and operating in Kosovo as well as northwestern Macedonia. But those warnings, he said, were also met with disbelief.

Within months, the Albanian National Army was taking credit for terrorist attacks, prompting the U.N. to acknowledge the group's existence.

Now Kosovo has entered what Gambill calls "The Fifth Phase," characterized by attacks against the United Nations Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) itself. A September warning from UNMIK to staff members warns, "Before you turn on your vehicle, inspect it all around, to see if anything is unusual or suspicious." The warning followed the blowing up of an UNMIK vehicle.

"UNMIK Out!" reads the graffiti seen on many buildings in Kosovo.

A field officer currently working with the U.N. Mission in the Kosovo area spoke with Cybercast News Service on condition of anonymity. After noting that the explosives used by al Qaeda terrorists in the March 2004 Madrid bombing attacks had come from the Balkans, he stated: "I sit here watching special patrol groups surveying and doing nothing. How many more people will die; whilst terrorists rest and recuperate here in the not so moderate Muslim regions of the Balkans theatre?"

"The cat and mouse game is coming to an end," the field officer noted. "Kosovo is saturated with extremists so NATO [may] pull out before it all blows up in their faces. War on Terror! [It's] more like support [of] terror!"

"My biggest concern has always been the incursion of radical Islam into the area," said Gambill. "They're making preparations in Macedonia for terrorist attacks against internationals if Kosovo is not granted independence."

If the United Nations recommends against independence, Gambill said, it will spur the Saudis to increase their involvement in the region. "They've got the money, they've got the power. They'll remind Kosovars that they are their true friends. And they'll help the extremists fight and prepare terrorist attacks against internationals and even NATO troops stationed there," Gambill told Cybercast News Service.\SpecialReports\archive\20050 9\SPE20050927a.html

Anonymous said...

I'm Albanian and I say screw all religions and all that goes with them!

My biggest wish is that some nation does what Turkey and Serbia did to Albanians yesterday, do to SERBIA today and for atleast 500 years!

Albanian Son

Anonymous said...

yeah yeah yeah...serbs would cherish and worship a toilet if they thought it would bring them riches.

Rot in hell serbia!

From: Albanian son of an Albanian

Anonymous said...

Ok people stop feeding the fucking troll calling himself nyouthouselawyer. Dont you see the whole reason for his miserable existence is coming on this site and cuting and pasting crap. Nyouthouse lawyer i have one thing to say to you- a life unexamined is not worth living- so do humanity a favour and remove your genes from the worlds gene pool.

Konaction said...

And get real man!

"I wish him the best, I really do. I just think he and Microsoft are a bit narrow. He'd be a broader guy if he had dropped acid once or gone off to an ashram when he was younger."
Steve Jobs

Anonymous said...

Albanians were attcking Serb churches before the war in 1998-that's one the of the resons the war started in the first place.

Anonymous said...

Yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah....and big breath....yeah yeah yeah yeah and so on and so on....
whatever you shits say....

Wakey wakey fuckwits..smell the roses, you're all finished pack your bags and get ready to move back to Russia.

Albanian so of an Albanian

NYoutlawyer said...

Read and learn the truth. I know albo's won't like it but, the truth can be hard to take sometimes. I'm sure I'll get the usual comments about being a Serb motherfucker, blah, blah, blah. But I am comfortable in my skin, are you shiptars?

Pack journalism can be lethal

Former Australian diplomat Gregory Clark laments the powers and hazards of following what others are saying

Japan Times
Saturday, April 8, 2006

By Gregory Clark

Instead of checking facts, the media prefer to follow what others are saying. And what others are saying is often inspired by establishment hardliners seeking to impose their agendas with the help of bogus news agencies, subsidized research outfits and hired scribblers.

Beijing is a frequent victim. One example is the pack journalistic myth of a Tiananmen Square massacre of students in 1989. All one needs to do to get the true story is insert "Tiananmen" into Google and read the reports at the time from none other than the U.S. Embassy in Beijing.

You will discover that the so-called massacre was in fact a mini civil war as irate Beijing citizens sought to stop initially unarmed soldiers sent to remove students who had been demonstrating freely in the square for weeks. When the soldiers finally reached the square there was no massacre. There were in fact almost no students.

As evidence of its alleged heavy-handed approach to Taiwan we are often told how Beijing labels that territory as a "renegade province." We are never told the source of the term, because it almost certainly does not exist (I read and speak Chinese and have never come across it). What Beijing does say is that there is only one China, and that Taiwan is part of that China. But the fact that all the major powers, including the United States, have agreed to or acknowledged that claim finds little mention in the international media. Beijing is almost always portrayed as unilaterally and forcefully laying claim to the island.

The death of former Yugoslav and Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic saw pack journalism at its worst. "Butcher of Belgrade" was the favorite accusation. Few were interested in the background, which begins with the fact that during the wartime German occupation of the former Yugoslavia, up to one million resisting Serbs were butchered by the Nazis and their fascist Muslim and Croatian allies -- the Ustashi -- whose brutalities were said to have shocked even the Nazis.

The post-1945 communist regime did all it could to dampen the resulting ethnic hatreds. Even so, sporadic attacks on Serbs by Ustashi fanatics continued. Then came the premature recognition by the West of Croatia and Bosnia as independent states in 1991/92. This meant the large Serbian minorities in both regions would have to accept the rule of their former oppressors. Bitter hostilities were inevitable, with the Serbian so-called "ethnic cleansing" in many cases being part of an effort to recover the towns and villages from which they were so cruelly expelled before 1945.

True, there were also atrocities by not only the Serbs. One of the worst was the brutal expulsion of some 500,000 Serbs from the Krajina region of Croatia -- an act of genuine ethnic cleansing that attracts little attention from anti-Serb critics, as does the fact that prior to the much-mentioned expulsion of 7,000 Bosnian Muslims from the former Serbian town of Sebrenicia, with some massacred, there had been systematic massacres of Serbs in the surrounding villages.

The true "butchers" in Yugoslavia were the U.S., British and German planners who orchestrated the break-up of this once ethnically stable nation. Their aim: to weaken Serbia, seen as pro-Moscow, and to extend Western influence into a formerly neutral area of Eastern Europe. The planners must have known how past ethnic hatreds would surface. For as we see in Iraq and Dafur today, when deep-seated ethnic or religious differences within a nation are triggered, atrocities and even mass exterminations are inevitable.

Every civilian, on the other side, has to be seen as a real or potential enemy. Atrocities can only be ended by forceful separation of the rival groups. But in Bosnia, the U.S. opposed separation through till 1995, claiming remarkably that it might create a precedent for ethnic division in the U.S. The U.S., incidentally, was the first to practice Dafur-style scorched-earth policies with its free-fire-zone policies during the Vietnam conflict.

The attempts to blame Milosevic for the Kosovo conflict were even more biased. We now know that as early as the 1980s, the U.S. and Britain were encouraging and training ethnic Albanian extremists of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) to undertake guerrilla war against the Serbian presence. Somehow the legitimate Serbian military resistance to these attacks was supposed to be yet another form of "ethnic cleansing." We were supposed to believe that the Serbian 10 percent minority was determined to cleanse Kosovo of its 90 percent ethnic Albanian majority.

Ironically "ethnic cleansing" was a term originally invented by the KLA to describe its goal of driving all Serbs out of Kosovo -- a goal it has now largely achieved with the help of the West. The trigger for much of the anti-Serbian demonization was a speech Milosevic made in Kosovo in 1989. It is described repeatedly as a racist manifesto calling for a Greater Serbia state. No one seems to have bothered to read the speech. If they did they would see that in fact Milosevic was calling for racial tolerance to cope with the tense situation created originally by deep-rooted and long-standing ethnic Albanian hostility to the Serbian presence in Kosovo -- a presence that had once been strong in this former Serbian homeland but had been greatly reduced by pro-Nazi Albanian wartime rampages against Serbian villages.

Worse was to follow. Forced to move out of Kosovo or have his country bombed, Milosevic agreed to move provided the respected ethnic Albanian moderate Ibrahim Rugova was put in charge. But the U.S., in the shape of feisty Secretary of State Madeline Albright, insisted on the young, vigorous KLA leader Hashim Thaci. When Milosevic objected to what in effect would be a death or expulsion sentence for any Serbs remaining in Kosovo, NATO launched its vandalistic bombing attacks on Serbia to force compliance. The KLA under Thaci then went on expel more Serbs, Jews and other minorities from Kosovo and to launch attacks into southern Serbia and Macedonia as part of its campaign to create a Greater Albania.

Today Thaci rejects even the role of the United Nations in Kosovo. Meanwhile Serbia, which has seen much of its economy destroyed and has had to absorb close to one million refugees from Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo, still suffers demonization. Pack journalism is a powerful weapon.

Gregory Clark is a former Australian diplomat and currently vice president of Akita International University. The source material of much of the Yugoslavia data in this article can be found on

Anonymous said...

Dont feed the trolls especially nyouthouselawyer.

ARTIST said...

10% of serb minority in Kosovo could barely right or speak, they're all peasants, so it's true... they couldn't cleanse Kosovo, how could they?! It was SERB paramilitaries and armed forces that entered from Belgrade and cleansed Kosovo...then made that 10% of minority enter albanian homes and steal everything they could, burn everything behind and head for Belgrade...the only way for SERBS to have things and feel richer! Rock on feeling comfortable in your skin, NYoutlawyer, because the CURSE in masacred children's eyes form Kosovo is gonna HUNT you forever!!!!!!!!!!!!!

NYoutlawyer said...

"The death of former Yugoslav and Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic saw slanted journalism at its worst. "Butcher of Belgrade" was the favorite accusation. Few were interested in the background, which begins with the fact that during the wartime German occupation of the former Yugoslavia, up to one million resisting Serbs were butchered by the Nazis and their fascist Muslim and Croatian allies -- the Ustashi -- whose brutalities were said to have shocked even the Nazis".

Did you notice the "muslim" part? That refers to you murderous albanian shitpars and muslims.

May the curse of murdered innocent Serbian children and families burn a whole in your venemous souls for eternity.

ARTIST said...

That was almost copied the tone of my voice; the problem you couldn't sound as convinsing as I did is that you wrote the gibberish you've heard. I wrote the truth I've witnessed.
Why would anybody be interested in the background of a DEMON who comes from a creepy family of an evil goes without saying...ta ta

Chris Blaku said...

You're right NY, you also neglected to mention that Belgrade declared itself the first "Jew free city in Europe." Such a success surely deserves attention.

ARTIST said...

He also forgot the famous Belgrade's dream "Serbia to Tokia" which turned to be Belgrade's nightmare "Serbia like Nokia"...smaller size every day, that too deserves attention!