Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Ambassador Mallias and the Balkan Train Wreck
Re-engaging the contact group, restarting negotiations, moving away from using language like "imposed solutions", looking at solutions that improve the European Union membership prospects for all parts of the Western Balkans, including Serbia and Kosovo, and having two additional tracks--a Franco-Russian (Sarkozy-Putin) one to try and find common ground at the United Nations and re-engaging all countries of Southeastern Europe to be stakeholders in the process--were some of the ideas. I'm not doing justice to his points and there should be a full report at National Interest online.
What is interesting is that the EU has not decided to insist that Kosovo is solely a European problem, not an international one--that can be solved "locally." This after all is the Chinese rationale for their likely abstention from any new resolution on Kosovo.
The men in Moscow are pretty much done blinking, since all it has gotten for them up to this point has been greater and greater US demands.
It's going to be a hot summer...
Go back to the Kosovo war. Seventy days of 700-1000 sorties a day from the massed air forces of NATO, and Milosevic showed no sign of cracking. The Russians intervened in Belgrade, and lo and behold, a deal came out. Now that deal didn't have what we wanted, namely, independence for Kosovo. But it got us out of a war that was splintering NATO. Part of that deal was a re-affirmation of Serbian sovereignty over Kosovo, and that at some point Serbian forces could re-enter Kosovo.
Look it up.
Now, here we are, trying to get the Serbs to accept, for no reason, independence for Kosovo, which we couldn't get by waging aggressive war in violation of the UN Charter, and the NATO-Russia Founding Act, like this part:
refraining from the threat or use of force against each other as well as against any other state, its sovereignty, territorial integrity or political independence in any manner inconsistent with the United Nations Charter and with the Declaration of Principles Guiding Relations Between Participating States contained in the Helsinki Final Act;
respect for sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of all states and their inherent right to choose the means to ensure their own security, the inviolability of borders and peoples' right of self-determination as enshrined in the Helsinki Final Act and other OSCE documents;
So, we've proven to the Russians that:
The NATO-Russia Founding Act is a worthless piece of paper
that when the Russian government gets us out of a bad war, we repay them by trashing the resulting agreement when we want to.
I don't think Vladimir will be in a mood to believe much of what George says when they get together at the Bush place.