The news announced by NATO General Secretary Javier Solana that NATO would immediately commence air attacks against Serbian targets in Kosovo following the breakdown in diplomatic negociations in Belgrade left me with a sense of trepidation this morning. No good is going to come of this latest NATO action.
Whilst the New Covenant Church of God has no specific prophecy to announce on this latest crisis point in the Balkans we have already indicated that troubles would continue in this region in an earlier article. What I write now is therefore more by way of personal observations.
In his announcement following the return of the US envoy to Belgrade, Solana went to great lengths to stress that the NATO action was not a war against the Yugoslav people but against a political régime. Such naïvity does not bode well. That is as absurd as saying that the Allies were waging a way against the Nazi Régime in Germany from 1939-45 but not against the German people. The moment NATO sheds a drop of Serb blood it will be a war against the Serbian nation. The Serbs, fiercely patriotic, will rally around any government, Milosovic's as well as anyone else's.
This is a brutal if sad reality about war. Corrupt régimes that provoke war lead all their people into war. Though the government bears the ultimate responsibility, everyone is involved.
Which brings us to the morality of this whole situation. Who, if anyone, is right? There can be no doubt that the Serbian government under Slobodan Milosovic was the prime catalyst in this affair, aided and abetted by alot of Serbian citizens. The attrocities in Bosnia are all the evidence we need for this. But as in the Bosnian situation, where Muslims and Croats participated in attrocities, so too have the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA)in Kosovo. So who is right?
Had the Kosovo Albanians through their principal representatives the KLA not resorted to violence but offered non-violent resistance as Ghandi did in India, then the moral blame would have landed squarely on the Serbs. But they did not. Both sides are now killing each other as they did in the Bosnia conflagration. Though the Serbs as the rulers must bear the greater burden of responsibility, the fact that there is blood on the hands of both sides means that morally speaking both the Kosovo Albanians and the Serbs are guilty.
What shall we say of NATO? Is it morally right for NATO to go to war? War is in itself never morally right - at best we can say it is the lesser of two evils, at least in the case of the Gulf War and possibly here in the Serbian situation. NATO is no paragon of virtue itself these days - their behaviour in Bosnia was hardly angelic. NATO troops engaged in rape and pillage, and the ground NATO command was far from neutral.
This is no Iraqi war. The Serbs will not give in as easily as the Iraqis did. Moreover, Serbia is also (at least nominally) a Christian nation and will be waging war against other (at leats nominally) Christian nations in NATO. Worse, the NATO nations are basically Catholic/Protestant (with the exception of Orthodox Greece which will probably sympathise with Serbia) whereas Serbia, along with its ally Russia, are Eastern Orthodox. We saw how religion played a decisive rôle in Bosnia and you can bet your bottom dollar that it's going to play a decisive rôle in Kosovo with the same protagonists: exit the Muslim Bosnians and enter the Muslim Kosovo Albanians; exit the Catholic Croats and enter the Catholic-Protestant NATO confederation - leaving the Orthodox Serbs and a very angry Orthodox Russian ally. Even China is meddling in this affair, from what I've heard.
Where the Kosovo crisis differs from the Bosnian one is that this time NATO is coming in as the equivalent of the Croatian combattants. Though it is ostensibly non-partisan, strict neutrality in a war situation is an impossibility.
How will this conflict be resolved? It is hard to say. I cannot see Russia sitting idly in the background doing nothing. My hope is that Russia and NATO will come to an arrangement before missiles start flying. What will happen to Kosovo? It will certainly not become independent - the best it can hope for is autonomy within Serbia which is the NATO plan. Might it become partitioned like Bosnia? I doubt it, because it is politically a part of the Serbian nation - Bosnia as a nation was practically a non-starter from the beginning and it wouldn't surprise me if it will yet be partitioned between Serbia and Croatia. But we shall see.
I will be back with more thoughts as the situation develops.
Laget: 24. mars, 1999
Oppdatert: 24. mars, 1999
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