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Albanians and Serbs in Kosovo: An Abbreviated History

An Opening for the The Islamic Jihad in Europe

G. Richard Jansen
Colorado State University
Fort Collins CO 80523
April 25, 1999, Updated July 22, 2008

This brief history, based on authoritative published sources, is intended to provide readers with
an objective and reasonably concise history of the hundreds of years of struggle between
Albanians and Serbs in Kosovo. Interested readers are strongly encouraged to consult the sources
cited for a much fuller treatment of the subject. At the end of the historical summary implications
of what is happening in Kosovo for the global jihad and the eventual Islamization of Europe are

History Prior to 19th Century

The earliest known inhabitants of Kosovo were called Illyrians by both Greeks and Romans.
Albanians today claim to be direct descendants of the Illyrians. Serbian scholars claim that
Albanians appeared on the scene in the early Middle Ages as a result of intermarriage between
nomadic shepherds and unromanized remnants of Illyrians and Dardanians from Thrace. Tracing
such descents is difficult but the people living in the region before the arrival of the Serbs from the
North are likely to have some genetic relationships to Albanians, but DNA data would be needed
to definitively settle the claim, which in any case is hardly germane to the current conflict. The
region was conquered by Alexander the Great 300 years before Christ and became part of the
Roman province of Dardania in the 4th century A. D.

Slavs crossed the Danube and moved into the Balkans by the 6th century. These migrations
weakened the Byzantium Empire sufficiently that Illyrian speaking people, known to their
neighbors as Albanians moved eastward from the Adriatic into the Kosovo region of the Balkans.
Their language became known as Albanian and their culture became allied with Byzantium after
the breakup of the Catholic Church into Eastern and western branches in 1054. Slavs migrating
into the Balkans divided into three groups; Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, as is still true today. By
the 12th century almost all arable land in the region now known as Northern Albania and Kosovo
was in Slavic hands.

By 1190 Kosovo had become the administrative and cultural center of the medieval Serbian
state ruled by the powerful Nemanjic dynasty. This dynasty lasted 200 years and still today
Kosovo is known by Serbians as "Old Serbia". However in 1389, in the famous Battle of Kosovo
Polje, the Serbs and their allies were defeated by the Ottoman Turks and shortly Kosovo became
part of the Ottoman Empire. Albanians started to move back into Kosovo in considerable numbers
in the 15th century and the Ottomans took sovereignty over the region in 1489. During this time
the great majority of Albanians were still Christians, and Serbs and Albanians lived together in
reasonable harmony. Gradually Albanians and to a lesser extent Serbs became converted to
Islam. Serb resistance to conversion was strengthened by activities of the Orthodox Church since
Kosovo contained many seminaries and was the home of the Serbian Orthodox Church. In the late
17th century Serbs left Kosovo in large numbers as a result of military victories of the Ottoman
Turks. This caused the Serbian "center of gravity" to move northward to the region of Belgrade
where it has remained ever since. This displacement of the Serb population is known in history as
"the great migration". As a result, the region of Kosovo became underpopulated and, attracted by
available fertile land, was resettled by Albanians moving eastward from the hills of Albania. At
this time these Albanians were both Christian and Muslim.

The Islamic Conquest and Islamization

Serbia including Kosovo was conquered by the Islamic Ottoman Turks in 1459, Bosnia and
Herzegovina fell in 1465 and 1483 repectively. During this time Serbian Christians and Jews, as
"people of the book", became dhimmis subject to the dhimma or protection offered to Christian
and Jews in newly Islamized lands in exchange for their lives. Dhimmi status goes back to the 7th
century when the Jews at the oasis of Khaybar in Arabia accepted the treaty offered to them by
Muhammed. In exchange for their lives the Jews forfeited ownership of their lands were forced to
defer to Muslims on the street, in business dealings and under the Shari'a law, and were forced to
by heavy taxes to their Muslim conquerers. This treaty of Khaybar became the model by which all
Christian and Jews in newly conquered lands became subject to a condition referred to by the
scholar Bat Ye'or as dhimmitude, a contraction of the two word dhimmitude and servitude.
Christians and Jews in lands under Islamic rule remained in the status of dhimmitude until the
emancipation ordered by the Ottoman Sultan in the middle of the 19th century.under pressure
from the European powers. In reality the oppression of the Christians and the Jews in the
Balkans moderated in 1912 after the first Balkan war.

Late 19th and Early 20th Century

The opening of a Serbian seminary in Prizren in 1871 started a pronounced strengthening of the
Serb presence in Kosovo culminating in Serbian reoccupation and control of Kosovo by 1912.
Following the defeat of the Ottoman Turks in the Russo-Ottoman War in 1878 the terms of the
"Peace Accord" extended Bulgaria westward and gave the Serbs control of Mitrovica and Pristina
in Kosovo, while the remainder remained in Ottoman hands. In response to this peace settlement
Albanian nationalists called a meeting in Prizren which was attended by over 300 delegates from
Kosovo and western Macedonia. This meeting founded what became known as "The Prizren
League". The delegates were primarily conservative Muslim landowners whose main interest was
to maintain strong Ottoman control of Kosovo to protect them from marauding Balkan neighbors.
The League also included Albanian intellectuals inspired by ideas of the European Renaissance
who were interested in unification of Albanian people under the umbrella of Ottoman rule. The
Ottoman Sultan supported the League because he wanted to instill pan-Islamic ideology as a
counterbalance to Christian and Slavic influences. However, as the Ottoman Empire weakened
the League moved toward autonomy within the Empire. In this movement the League
increasingly became anti-Christian as well, causing considerable anxiety among Christian
Albanians and especially among the Serbs. At this time the Muslim leadership encouraged what
today would be termed "ethnic cleansing" and as a result more and more Serbs left Kosovo and
moved north in Serbia. The Treaty of San Stefano in 1898 granted independence to Serbia.Also
in 1898 Western powers, reacting to what they perceived as undue Russian interests in the
Balkans, compelled Russia to submit to a new peace settlement, this time at the Congress of
Berlin presided over by the "Iron Chancellor" Bismarck. This settlement greatly reduced the size
of Bulgaria and returned all Albanian inhabited land to the Ottomans. Many Serbs were expelled
from Kosovo at this time and Serbian troops also were forced to withdraw..

In the early 20th century the "Young Turk Movement", as a liberal movement in opposition to
the Sultan, became an important factor within the Ottoman Empire. A constitution was
established and electoral laws promulgated. Unfortunately for the hopeful Albanians in Kosovo
the electoral law of 1908 stipulated that voters must have a knowledge of the Turkish language in
order to vote leaving the great majority of Kosovars, whether Albanian or Serbian,
disenfranchised. The Young Turks were strongly opposed to nationalist tendencies within the
Empire and worked toward centralization of power and authority and Turkification of all subjects in
the Ottoman domain. As is the case in present day Serbia, the Ottomans strongly opposed the
autonomy desired by Kosovars in general and Albanians in particular. This was one of many
Albanian Kosovar disappointments though the years.
In the first Balkan War of 1912 Albania was attacked by Montenegro, Serbia, Bulgaria and
Greece. The Albanians were allied with the Ottomans. Serbs joined the army in large numbers to
avenge the Serbian defeat by the Turks at the Battle of Kosovo Polje. At this time Kosovo was
mostly Albanian. Serbs entered Pristina as Albanians retreated to the mountains. The Serbian
army destroyed Turkish and Albanian houses and there was much plundering and killing. Serb
peasants followed the army into Kosovo re-occupying the land. The Albanians fought fiercely but
lost the war and Kosovo came under Serbian authority. At the Conference of Ambassadors in
London in 1912 presided over by Sir Edward Grey, the British Foreign Secretary, Serbia was given
sovereignty over Kosovo which it has retained to the present day. Albania, for the first time was
internationally recognized and by the Treaty of London in1913 became a fully independent and
sovereign state. Within Kosovo not surprisingly there was much anti-Serbian sentiment since the
population was still mostly Albanian. In 1913, in the second Balkan War, Bulgaria attacked the
Serbian and Greek armies in Macedonia. They miscalculated and were quickly and decisively
defeated. Among the outcomes Serbia nearly doubled in size obtaining most of Slavic Macedonia.

World War I

At the beginning of the war Bosnia-Herzegovina had been annexed by and was under the rule of
Austria-Hungary. In June 1914 Gavrilo Princip, a Serbian nationalist, assassinated the Austrian
Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarejevo and the world, especially Europe, was never and will never
be the same again. Austria-Hungary issued an ultimatum to Serbia that Serbia felt it could not
accept without loss of its honor and sovereignty. Austria-Hungary, with the support of Germany,
declared war on Serbia. Russia came into the war in support of its Slavic brothers in Serbia.
France and Britain entered the war with Russia because of their alliances. The "Guns of August"
were not silenced until November 11, 1918. It is not our role to discuss the many adverse effects
of the war, three of which were the rise of Bolshevism in Russia, rise of Fascism in Italy and the
rise of Naziism in Germany. We will discuss only the effects of the war on Yugoslavia in general
and Kosovo in particular.

The declaration of war by Austria-Hungary was greeted with considerable satisfaction in Albania
for understandable reasons. Also for understandable reasons Serbia saw Albania and Albanians as
its enemy. As a result vicious guerrilla fighting took place between Serbs and Albanians in Kosovo
with atrocities on both sides and a flow of refugees of Albanians into Albania. In 1915, the
Western allies, in the secret Pact of London, agreed to divide Albania between Greece and Italy
leaving only a small autonomous state in the central region. Austria-Hungarian and Bulgarian
troops moved into Kosovo. The Serb armies were beaten decisively and in what is known as " The
Great Serbian Retreat" made a disastrous trek across Kosovo and the snow- covered mountains of
Albania. The army was accompanied by thousands of Serb civilians who were terrified by what
they had heard about the fate of Belgium at the hands of the Axis powers. The best estimate is
that 100,000 Serbs lost their lives during this grueling retreat. Kosovo was occupied by Austria-
Hungary and Bulgaria. Many Kosovar Albanians joined the Austria- Hungarian army. Albanian
language schools were opened to undermine the Serbian presence. After the tide of battle turned
against Austria-Hungary in 1918 the Serb army took revenge massacring women and children
and destroying homes. In retaliation guerilla warfare against the Serbs was relentless.

The peace treaties of 1919-1920 established a Yugoslav state with the name "The Kingdom of
Slovenes, Croats and Serbs". The name was shortly changed to Yugoslavia. Included in the
Kingdom, which was a constitutional monarchy, beside those mentioned above were Bosnia-
Herzegovina, Montenegro and Macedonia. Kosovo was again an integral part of Serbia. The
Kingdom was comprised of 12 million people, of whom 400,000 were Albanian. It was
overwhelmingly a Slavic state. In contrast 64% of the population of Kosovo was Albanian, and of
these three-quarters were Muslim. The Kingdom was governed from Belgrade.

It is clear that seeds for ethnic conflict had been re-sown and it didn't take long for them to
germinate. Hostilities between Serbs and Albanians in Kosovo heated up immediately and by
1921 Albanian Kosovars requested the League of Nations to take steps to unite Kosovo with
Albania. They alleged that 12,000 Albanians had been killed and 22,000 imprisoned in Kosovo
since 1918. The League was relatively unsympathetic and did not take action. A Kachak
movement of armed Albanians seeking annexation by Albania developed. As a result Albanians in
Kosovo were increasingly seen by Serbs as comprising an outlaw national liberation movement,
subversive to the Yugoslav constitution. In the period 1918-1941, between the two world wars,
colonization of Kosovo by Serbian settlers was attempted. Land was appropriated from Albanians
illegally and Albanians were encouraged to leave. Some Albanians resisted. In 1931 the population
of Kosovo remained 63% Albanian, so it is clear that, for a variety of reasons, the colonization
movement had failed except for a few isolated Albanian towns that became more Serbian.

World War II

Albania was occupied by Italian forces in April 1939. Greece was attacked by Italy in November
1940, but a bloody stalemate resulted that ultimately required German assistance. Rumania
joined the Axis in November 1940, and Bulgaria in March 1941. The Yugoslav government was
coerced into also joining the Tripartite Pact (Germany, Italy and Japan) on March 25, 1941 followed
two days later by an anti-axis coup which Hitler did not later forget. Germany invaded Yugoslavia
April 6, and by April 17 formal resistance by the Yugoslav army had collapsed. Croatia, including
Bosnia-Herzegovina, became a Fascist state allied with Germany and which killed and persecuted
thousands of Serbs. Slovenia was annexed to Italy and Montenegro was occupied by Italian
forces. Serbia, Macedonia and Greece were occupied by Germany. The Yugoslav and Greek
campaigns required 27 German divisions. Most of Kosovo was occupied by Albania except for the
important mining region which remained under German control.

Resistance to German occupation was fierce and took place primarily under the Loyalist
Chetnicks under the command of General Mihailovic and the Partisans under the command of the
head of the Communist Party Josip Broz, a Croat, later known as Marshall Tito. In 1943 the British
Government withdrew support from Mihailovic and threw all it's support in increasing amounts to
Tito and the communists. This enabled Tito to fight both the Germans and Mihailovic and the
Loyalists thus consolidating post-war communist rule over Yugoslavia. The Serbian guerilla
resistance required, at it's peak, 700,000 German soldiers for it to be controlled by Germany.. In
Kosovo, under Albanian and German rule nearly 100,000 Albanians moved into Kosovo. Serbs
were harassed and attacked by the occupying force of Albanians.

Post-War Yugoslavia

After the war Yugoslavia consisted of republics of Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina,
Montenegro and Macedonia. In 1940 the Communist Party of Yugoslavia had committed in writing
to an autonomous "Peasant Republic of Kosovo", but as with so many communist promises it
wasn't kept. In 1943, at Mulje in central Albania, a committee was established for the "Salvation
of Albania". The agreement at the conclusion of this meeting sanctioned the creation of a unified
Albanian state including Kosovo. Needless to say, Yugoslavs strenuously objected. Also in 1943
the 2nd Prizren League was established, with delegates from all Albanian territories including
Kosovo, and with similar objectives. During the war years Serbs and Montenegrins in Albanian
occupied territory were brutalized by the SS "Skanderbeg" division which was comprised of
Albanian soldiers under German officers. Albanian village police units also were involved in these
activities directed against Serbs. After the war, thousands of Serbs and Montenegrins were
prohibited from returning to Kosovo, and thousands of Albanians immigrated into Kosovo.

After Tito had consolidated his power and the rule of the communist party over all of Yugoslavia,
he favored a Kosovo within Serbia for political reasons since he needed support from the Serbs
and to win them over to communism. Albanian Kosovars were perceived to be politically
unreliable because of their wartime cooperation with the Axis powers. Just prior to the end of the
war Tito launched a major offensive against the Germans using impressed Albanian troops as well
as Serbs. The Yugoslav army also arrested prominent Albanians and collected weapons house to
house in Kosovo. The Kosovars responded with a general rebellion against the Partisans which
was brutally put down by Tito and his forces with massacres and many atrocities. The National
Democratic Committee of Albanians estimated that 48,000 Albanians lost their lives in the six
months of fighting that ensued.

The 1946 Yugoslav constitution did not grant territorial autonomy to Kosovo, nor did it grant
Albanian status as a recognized nationality. Five nationalities were recognized within the Yugoslav
Federation; Serb, Croat, Slovene, Montenegrin and Macedonian. Albanian was not one of them.
Kosovo was not recognized as a republic or an autonomous territory within Serbia. Rather it was
defined as an autonomous region under Federal not Serbian jurisdiction. After Tito broke with
Stalin in 1948 Yugoslavia ended diplomatic relations with Albania which remained loyal to
Moscow. Thousands of Albanians were arrested, now as "Stalinists' rather than as fascists as was
the case previously. The 1953 constitution reduced autonomy for Kosovo even more with much
repression of Albanians taking place. Not surprisingly, by 1956 there was a resurgence of
Albanian nationalism. The Yugoslav government again took steps to disarm Albanians house to
house. In the 1963 constitution what little was left of autonomy in Kosovo was reduced even
further by placing it under Serbian rather than Federal authority.

In 1967 Tito made his first visit to Kosovo. He purged Alexander Rankovic, who was a strong
Serbian "centralist" and much hated in Kosovo, from power in Kosovo. This created euphoria
among the Albanian population. More concessions were made to Albanian nationalism dealing
with languages, education and other cultural issues. A veritable flood of Albanian nationalism was
the predictable result. Because of immigration of Albanians, emigration of Serbs and a very high
Albanian birthrate from 1961 to 1971 Albanians increased from 67% to 74% of the population .

These developments continued and intensified. The 1974 constitution made Kosovo an
Autonomous province but more importantly made it an equal constitutional element of the
Federation as one of eight federal units. Although not yet a republic its authority within the
Federation was now equal to that of Serbia. In 1978 a centennial celebration of the first League of
Prizren was held which caused an even stronger resurgence of Albanian nationalism and a
corresponding reduction of loyalty to the unified Yugoslav state. Money going into capital
development in Kosovo became a resented financial drain from other regions of Yugoslavia,
especially Slovenia and Croatia. A continues demographic explosion of births among low- income,
poorly educated Albanians who became dependents of the government increased the financial
drain and increased the resentment. In addition, income inequalities became worse in the move
toward "market socialism" and the move away from central planning. By 1981 100,000 Serbs left
Kosovo and as Albanians continued to move in they now constituted 77% of the population in
Kosovo. Making economic development worse, the Serbs who left were better educated and
technically trained than the Albanians who moved in.

Tito's Death

Tito died May 4, 1980. Among other de-stabilizing effects, Albanians felt that they had lost their
new guardian. Less than a year later and not necessarily related to Tito's death, Albanian riots
shook Kosovo. The riots were ignited by student grievance at a grossly overcrowded Pristina
University, and rapidly spread throughout Kosovo. At this time approximately 28% of the people
in Kosovo were students and the education they were getting was inferior because of the
overcrowding and because of under-qualified and unqualified faculty. This was a matchbox that it
took only a spark to ignite. Serbian and Montenegrin citizens were beaten, their homes burned
and their shops looted. Public opinion throughout Serbia turned sharply against the educational
system in Kosovo In particular Pristina University became widely believed to be a hotbed of
Albanian nationalism. In response, Serbian, Montenegrin and Macedonian nationalisms were all
given great impetus.

By the middle 1980's there was an increasing amount of Serb migration out of Kosovo, in
respose to widespread intimidation, pressure and some violence on the part of extremist
Albanians who made no bones about desiring an "ethnically clean" Kosovo. The first organized
protest on the part of Serbian Kosovars took place in 1986. Interestingly, also about this time the
strongest statement on behalf of the Serbs in Kosovo was made by a group of Serbian intellectuals
under the auspices of the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences. Long before Milosevic came to
power, this memorandum from this prestigious body called for a revocation of Kosovo autonomy
and for a de-Albanianization of Kosovo. However, by this time a strong underground movement
for the "National Liberation of Kosovo" had developed along with other underground Albanian
groups. Serbs in Kosovo felt, and indeed were threatened. In February 1987 the Serbian
government proposed to take away Kosovo's autonomy, even though they did not have the
authority to do so since it was under Federal not Serbian authority. From 1974 until the late
1980's Albanians in Kosovo undoubtably had enjoyed the most administrative and cultural
autonomy in their history whether under Serbian, Albanian or indeed Ottoman rule, but for the
Kosovars that favored independence, it wasn't enough. Some wanted status as a republic within
Yugoslavia, while others favored unification with Albania along with Albanians from Macedonia and
Montenegro in a "Greater Albania"

Slobodan Milosevic

Milosevic's political career as a communist party apparachik had barely begun when Tito died in
1980. He rose rapidly and by 1987 he headed a more orthodox wing of the party with Ivan
Stambolic heading a more reformist wing. Stambolic became Prime Minister of Serbia when Tito
died, and Milosevic was widely seen as Stambolic's protégé. Both men were strongly nationalistic
but initially Stambolic was more feared by non-Serbs because of his power and more importantly
because he had signaled his intention to centralize authority within all of Serbia including Kosovo.
This later changed as Milosevic championed serbs in Kosovo, and Stambolic backed off from his
earlier views in response to Albanian riots in Kosovo.

Milosevic first visited Kosovo in April 1987. Until this time he had said little about Kosovo. At a
political rally of Serbs, he was emotionally greeted and literally mobbed by crowds of Serbs
demanding action against the Albanians for condoning attacks on Serbs and Montenegrins. As
mentioned earlier, the Serbian Presidium for Constitutional Change had already proposed to take
away Kosovo's autonomy. This strong expression of anger, frustration and political support for
Milisovic caused the Communist Party of Yugoslavia to debate the issue of Kosovo as an ethnic and
nationality issue and therefore having implications for all the republics. The Serbian leadership
mobilized public opinion under the slogan "No Force can now Stop Serbia's Unification". Street
demonstrations were held all over Serbia for the return to Serbian authority of the two
autonomous provinces Vojvodina and Kosovo, and an end to "Albanian Genocide" in Kosovo.
Milosevic came to power as president of Serbia replacing Stambolic in late 1987.

These and other events had repercussions in Kosovo. In November 1988 a five day
demonstration for national liberation and autonomy involving 100,000 people was ignited by a
miners strike. In February 1989 another miners strike brought life in Kosovo to a standstill with
Albanians abandoning work and school to attend protest meetings. Serbs in Kosovo were
terrorized and thousands of Serbs in Belgrade demanded that order be restored in Kosovo. A
curfew was imposed and the entire province placed under a state of emergency decree.

The process to abolish Kosovo autonomy began in March 1989 via amendments to the Serbian
constitution that gave Serbia direct control over Kosovo. These changes also were approved by
the Kosovo Parliament after it had been purged of opponents to centralization. Sometimes
anniversaries can come at inopportune times. On June 28, 1989 a huge political rally was held at
Kosovo Polje to commemorate the Serbian defeat at the hands of the hated Turks in 1389.
Thosands of photos and posters of Milosevic were displayed. Milosevic was generally considered
not only in Kosovo, but in all of Serbia as well, as the first Serbian leader since the second world
war to hve defended Serbia's interests. Serbia and Serbs have a deep-seated persecution
complex that cannot be ignored when dealing with the conflict in Kosovo.

The year 1990 began with civil disturbances by tens of thousands of Albanian protesters
swelled by workers emptying out of the factories. Violence resulted which was countered with
equal or greater violence by security forces. The not surprising result was even more violence,
with thirty- one deaths and hundreds injured before the disturbances were quelled and the streets
cleared. In March 1990 the Serbian Parliament adopted the "Program for Achieving Peace,
Freedom and Equality in Kosovo". It's goal was the peaceful co-existence of all ethnic groups in
Kosovo, but it also identified Albanian separatists as the main threat to this goal. Because of all
the many past events combined with Albanian desires for independence Albanians could not and
did not accept the authority and legitimacy of this program.

In July 1990 the Serbian government deprived the illegal Kosovo Parliament from meeting. In
response Albanian parliamentarians assembled on the steps of the Parliament building and
proclaimed the Sovereign Republic of Kosova. Within the Yugoslav Federation. Serbia then officially
dissolved Kosovo's government and took executive control. The complete removal of Kosovo's
autonomy was completed in September when a change in the Serbian constitution redefined
Kosovo as a region in Serbia, with administrative and executive control now in the hands of the
Serbian National Assembly. The emergency measures imposed by Serbia resulted in a de-
Albanianization of cultural and educational institutions in kosovo with a consequent re-
Serbianization occurring. In response Albanian Kosovars adopted a constitution for their Republic
of Kosova.

Breakup of Yugoslavia

By the 1980's the economy in Yugoslavia, besides being dependent on Western aid with a very
large debt, was in a shambles. Debt increased from $6 billion in 1975 to $19 billion in the early
1980's. Interest on the debt combined with mismanagement and a centrally-planned stagnant
economy resulted in triple-digit inflation. Conditions were bad throughout Yugoslavia, worse in
Kosovo and desperate among Kosovar Albanians.

Along with the collapse of the communist world in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, the
idea of declaring independence by one of the Yugoslav republics was conceived first in Slovenia in
the fall of 1990. Among other reasons, Slovenia, as the most economically advanced of the
Yugoslav republics was increasingly distressed about having to subsidize other less well off
republics. After a plebiscite that demonstrated overwhelming public support for independence,
the Slovenian Parliament declared independence on December 26, 1990 to become effective in six
months time if grievances weren't resolved. They weren't and, Slovenia became the first of the
Yugoslav republics to achieve independence, and for reasons not gone into here this was
accomplished with virtually no military action.

Croatia and Bosnia were different matters and in both cases war resulted after independence
was declared. Croatia had been a Fascist state allied to Germany during World War II. Many
Serbs had been killed by Croatians at that time and these matters had by no means been
forgotten. Franjo Tudjman had become President on a tide of Croatian nationalism as,
correspondingly, Milosevic had been elected on a tide of Serbian nationalism. The two dictators
wanted, respectively, a greater Croatia or a greater Serbia. Milosevic and Tudjman met in March
1991 and Tudjman proposed a division of Bosnia between them to avoid conflict. This and other
negotiations failed and Croatia declared independence from Yugoslavia as it was currently
constituted. A brutal war resulted with much killing and burning of houses on both sides with
ethnic cleansing part of the war from the beginning. A UN brokered cease-fire occurred January 2,
1992 with United States recognition coming in April of that year. However low-level warfare
continued between Croatia and Serbia into 1994 as Croatia fought to place the Krajina region,
which had been populated largely by Serbs for 400 years, firmly under Croatian control. Croatia
got its way and the Krajina Serbs were in essence abandoned by Milisovic. In 1995, the Croatian
army, which had been clandestinely armed with the assistance of the United States, took control
of Krajina. With the tacit approval of the United States estimates are that anywhere from 200,000
to 400,000 Serbs were forced to leave Krajina and without adequate food and water crowded the
road to Banja Luka and Serbia. Their reception in Serbia was not warm. Many of the Serbs that
remained behind were tortured or killed.
<> The independence of Bosnia-Herzegovina was recognized by the European community on
April 6, 1992, in spite of the fact that the referendum in Bosnia on independence had been
opposed and boycotted by the Bosnian Serbs who comprised one-third of the population. In
addition the arbitration (Badinter) commission authorized by the European community had
recommended against independence since its requirement that all ethnic groups support
independence had not been met.
The Bosnian government, led by Alije Izebegovic, was essentially Muslim in nature. For the next
three years it fought wars with both Croatia and Serbia. A variety of peace plans were developed,
the most prominent of which was the Vance-Owen proposal. This plan essentially provided for a
three-way division of Bosnia reflected the warring ethnic groups; Croatian, Serbian and Muslim.
The plan was not acceptable to the warring sides and was rejected.

Hostilities ended between Croatia and the Bosnian government in March 1994 with the
establishment of a loose Bosnian-Croatian Federation which has not yet to this day coalesced into
a workable Federation. One outcome of the peace agreement was the influx of arms into Bosnia
though Croatia for the use of the Bosnian government in fighting the Serbs. This was done with
the tacit approval of the United States. The war with Serbia continued until United States
intervention with air power brought Milosevic, Tudjman and Izebegovic to the negotiating table in
Dayton Ohio. Here, under prodding from the United States the Dayton Peace Accord was signed
which divided Bosnia in two halves, not completely severed, but not a unified government with
real authority either. The two halves are the Bosnian-Croatian Federation with 51% of the
territory and Republika Srpska with 49%. Since that time little if any progress has been made to
unify Bosnia under one government and it is generally believed that if the UN peacekeepers were
to leave war would break out again.

Events in Kosovo in the 1990's

By the spring of 1991 the League for a Democratic Kosovo (LDK) had 700,000 menbers with
offices in Zurich, Stuttgart and Brussels among other cities. In September of that year the
Parliament of the un-recognized Republic of Kosovo approved a resolution supporting the
"Independence and Sovereignty of Kosovo". Put to a clandestinely organized and held referendum
in Bosnia the resolution was approved overwhelmingly. Following this vote, the "Coordinating
Committee of Albanian Political Parties in Yugoslavia" called for either 1) an Albanian republic
within Yugoslavia which would include other ethnic Albanians within Serbia, Macedonia and
Montenegro or 2) an undivided Albanian state of all Albanians in the Balkans, i.e. a "Greater

In the summer of 1992 Albanians and Serbs in Kosovo were living in a virtual state of apartheid,
essentially completely separated from each other. In the Yugoslav elections of December 1992
Albanian leadership in Kosovo advised Albanians not to vote and in large numbers they did not.
Milosevic's Socialist Party won the election with 47 seats but the strongly nationalist Radical party
won 33 seats putting additional pressure on Milosevic to defend Serbian interests in Kosovo and
Serbian nationalism in general. It is likely that Milosevic could have been defeated if the Albanians
in Kosovo had in fact voted. With the collapse of communism in Albania, important voices in that
country started to talk more about the union of Kosovo with Albania. In the meantime, Albanian
Kosovars emphasized what they believed was their ancestral rights to Kosovo by broadcasting and
using Illyrian names. On their part, Serbs changed street signs to recognize the importance of
Serbian history and culture in Kosovo

.By 1993, 400,000 Albanians had left Kosovo in response to deteriorating socio-economic
conditions. The Albanian Kosovars were bitterly disappointed by the Dayton agreement which, in
their view, failed to recognize their long-standing and justified demand for independence. The
Dayton Accord had not only recognized Republika Srpska, but more importantly had shut the door
to the Albanian Kosovar case by decreeing that no additional changes in borders within Yugoslavia
would be sanctioned. Meanwhile Serbs in Kosovo became increasingly worried as they saw how
poorly the refugees from Krajina had been received and treated in Serbia. They felt isolated,
abandoned by Belgrade and increasingly felt they were being sold out to the Albanians. Serbs and
Albanians in Kosovo both were mobilizing themselves with arms. Passive Albanian resistance was
being replaced by violence, first by the underground "National Movement for the Liberation of
Kosovo" and then by the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA). The KLA entered into a campaign of
terrorism by killing Serbs in the refugee camps and Serbian policemen and border guards in order
to radicalize the situation. They succeeded and Serb police and military counter- measures

In March 1997 civil government in Albania totally collapsed and anarchy resulted. This caused
some Albanians to realize that a "Greater Albania" may not be such a great idea after all as they
saw Albanians being killed by other Albanians. More importantly, as conditions worsened Albania
became wide-open for the removal of military assets by the KLA. This in fact did occur and along
with money, some of which has been alleged to come from drugs, and arms coming from other
sources, the KLA engaged the Serbian authorities in a full-fledged civil war for independence. The
United States advised the League for a Democratic Kosovo, under the leadership of Ibrahim
Rugova, who sought a non-violent solution to the crisis, that parallel parliamentary elections
should not be held and also that Kosovo should remain part of Serbia. However public opinion
among Albanian Kosovars swung strongly against Rugova and his non-violent approach and
toward the radical KLA.

In her book Islam and Dhimmitude: Where Civilizations Collide published in 2002, Bat
Ye'or made the following comments about the historical antecedents to the dispute between
Muslims and Christians in the Balkans:

“To anyone with some knowledge of the centuries-old history of Serbian resistance
to Ottoman domination, it was obvious that the return of a form of Islamic power in
Bosnia- Herzegovina would be rejected by Orthodox Serbs. The five centuries of
"harmonious and peaceful coexistence” under Islamic rule, cited by Bosnian President
Alija Izetbegovic belong to the theological dogma of the perfection of the shari'a and
the dhimmi For the Orthodox Serbs, however, this same period is considered one of
massacre, pillage, slavery, deportation, and the exile of Christian populations. In their
eyes it was a regime which found its justification in the usurpation of their land and
denial of their rights; hence it represented the exact opposite of a peaceful,
multicultural coexistence based on a system of social and political justice. Thus, two
conceptions of history clashed, having never before been confronted. On the one hand,
there is the version the dhimmi victims; on the other, that of the conquerors, through
In their wars of emancipation-and, later, of liberation-the Orthodox Serbs found that
their bitterest adversaries were their Muslim compatriots attached to their religious
privileges and their domination over the humiliated Christians. During World War II
Axis forces invaded Yugoslavia and sponsored the creation of a Nazi Croat state
(Ustashi) with which many Bosnian Muslims cooperated. At the prompting of the Mufti
of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husayni, they formed military corps, including the 13th
(Hanjar) Waffen SS Division, some of which were trained in France. Early in the war,
these Muslim Slavs actively participated in the policies of the Ustashi Croats and Nazis
in the genocide of hundreds of thousands of Orthodox Serbs, Jews, and gypsies. Even
their German allies were shocked by the bestial atrocities committed then in
The Nazis encouraged secessionist claims by Muslims, some of whose leaders cited
the traditional peaceful coexistence under Islam to denounce later these atrocities
which they imputed to the Croats-although Muslim participation in the massacres was
notorious. In fact, these allegations aimed at exploiting the inter-Christian conflicts
between Catholic Croats and Orthodox Serbs which had facilitated Islam's expansion
for a millennium.
Under the authoritarian Communist rule of Tito-a Croat-the Muslim religion
benefited from being recognized as Muslim nationality. It was the only group defined
by religious criteria, whereas others were characterized by their ethnic differences.
The deliberate policy of allowing the Islamization of the Orthodox Serbian homeland
(Kosovo and Bosnia-Herzegovina) to continue also earned Tito the economic and
political support of the Islamic world and perpetuated inter-Christian schisms. The
communist dogma of human brotherhood once again froze the conflicts without
resolving them. In 1991, before the conflict erupted, the English edition of Alija
Izetbegovic's Islamic Declaration (1970) was published in Sarajevo. It specifically
stated: "There can be neither peace nor coexistence between Arabia, the cradle of
Islam and non-Islamic social and political institutions." And his conclusion affirmed:
'The Islamic movement must, and can, take over power as soon as it is morally
and numerically so strong that it can not only destroy the existing non- Islamic power,
but also build up a new Islamic one’.
Underneath the camouflage of "the multicultural Islamic state" and the "five
hundred years of peaceful coexistence," Bosnian Serbs recognized the shari'a system
which had decimated them. Hence, the cruelty of the fighting in Bosnia reflected the
historical confrontation which, instead of being settled by dialogue, erupted in hatred.
Its barbarity expresses the revenge of repressed history, a parody of the distorted
myth of idyllic coexistence. Izetbegovic described the Canadian UN commander, Major-
General Lewis W. MacKenzie, as "an ignorant man" for his statement in New York that:
‘both sides’ in the war were filled with hatred. According to Izetbegovic, this
could only have been said by someone who knew nothing of Sarajevo's Muslims and
their ‘500-year tradition of tolerance’.
Izetbegovic's reference to an "Ottoman paradise" scandalized Serbs, Greeks, and
Armenians. Innocent individuals regardless of religion have become victims of a past
which, because it was buried in silence, vengefully returns, accompanied by appalling
acts of violence. Those responsible are the politicians who, to safeguard their own
interests, tried to impose the myth of tolerance on their victims”.

The territorial feelings of the Serbs toward Kosovo as the homeland of "Old Serbia" with its
many Orthodox Christian monasteries are considerably greater than any such feelings toward

Movement Toward Direct United State Involvement

As the civil war heated up in Kosovo, Western Europe and the United State in early 1998
increasingly became concerned and involved.. A "Contact Group on Kosovo" was established
consisting of representative from Germany, France, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United
States. Speaking before the group in March 1998 Secretary of State Madeline Albright put the
blame for violence in Kosovo squarely on Milosevic. She outlined terms which he and his
government must accept including the presence of international observers in Kosovo, "enhanced"
status for Kosovo within Serbia and stopping of the killing. These terms and others were not met
and the war intensified.

In October, NATO authorized the NATO Commander to launch air strikes if Milosevic continued
to fail to comply with "the repeated political and humanitarian demands of the UN Security Council
in regards to Kosovo". On October 27, Albright announced at a news conference in Washington
that Milosevic had complied sufficiently with NATO demands that air strikes were not warranted
"at this time". Milosevic agreed to withdraw the bulk of his military forces fron Kosovo, to allow
1800 UN observers into Kosovo, and to allow over-flights by NATA planes. In return, he wanted
NATO to lift the order authorizing air strikes. NATO refused to do this and instead suspended the
order. The KLA, sensing that NATO was on it's side intensified its military efforts and the Serbs
intensified their military campaign to defeat the KLA on the field. Hence the October agreement
fell apart.

On January 28, 1999 NATO warned that it was ready to use military force immediately, and
Britain and France went further to indicate that they were ready to send in ground forces to
enforce a peace settlement. A conference was held at Rambouillet in France in mid-February to
negotiate an end to the war. Present were the Western allies, Yugoslavia and representatives of
the major Albanian Kosovar groups demanding independence. The Western Allies led by the
United States issued a two-week deadline, backed by threatened air strikes, during which time
both parties must agree to the proposed settlement. This settlement, dictated by the West
required Yugoslavia to withdraw its forces from Kosovo, the KLA to lay down their arms, NATO
peace-keeping troops on the ground to enforce the agreement and a three year period to settle
the political future of Kosovo. Yugoslavia believed that in three years following the required
referendum it would be forced to grant Kosovo complete independence which was and is the
stated goal of the KLA. Appendix B to the Peace Accord proposed at Rambouillet included
provisions more appropriate for an occupying force after an armistice than a peace accord. It
required Yugoslavia to surrender to NATO many aspects of its national sovereignty. It is not
surprising that Yugoslavia was unwilling to sign the Rambouillet document. Neither side would
agree and the bombing deadline was extended two weeks. The conference re-convened in Paris
two weeks later and enough pressure was put on the Albanians that they finally agreed to sign the
Rambouillet agreement. Milosevic would not sign and President Clinton dispatched Special Envoy
Richard Holbrooke to Belgrade for one last meeting with Milosevic on March 22. Milosevic accused
the United States of sitting on the Albanian side of the table. His view was that the inevitable
outcome of the three year period to determine the fate of Kosovo would be the severing of Kosovo
from Serbia, an outcome he could not accept. Holbrooke asked him if he knew what his refusal to
agree to the "Rambouillet Accord" meant. Milosevic replied "you are going to bomb us".
Holbrooke said "that's right". There was no misunderstanding. The bombing started March 24.

The bombing was initiated by NATO to stop ethnic cleansing and the killing of Albanian
Kosovars. The expectation on the part of NATO was that Yugoslavia would capitulate to the West
and sign the Rambouillet agreement. This did not happen. Instead Yugoslavia stepped up its war
with the KLA and close to a million Kosovars were driven out of Kosovo mostly by the Serbs but to
some extent by the bombing itself. Most of the vacated homes in Kosovo were burned by Serbs.
After 73 days of bombing the infrastructure of Serbia has been seriously damaged and it's
economy set back probably decades. A political resolution to the conflict was sought by the G-8
group of industrialized countries with Russia playing the role of mediator. As of this date (June 5
1999) Yugoslavia and NATO have signed an agreement. Both sides had to compromise and they
did. For NATO Yugoslavia has agreed to "substantial" autonomy for Kosovo, withdrawal of all Serb
military, police and paramilitary forces, return of all the refugees, and an international armed
security presence in Kosovo with "substantial" NATO participation. On the other hand for
Yugoslavia the agreement calls for respect of the territorial integrity of Yugoslavia, Kosovo remains
in Yugoslavia, the agreement is under the authority of the Security Council of the United Nations
not NATO, and calls for involvement of Russian troops in the peacekeeping forces.

End of War Settlement

The news media in the United States are claiming that Milosevic caved in to NATO because of
the bombing, the indictment of Milosevic as a war criminal by the International War Crimes
Tribunal and a last minute opaque threat by President Clinton that perhaps he might agree to a
ground invasion of Kosovo after all. More objectively however, Yugoslavia got what it went to war
over, namely the retention of Kosovo within Yugoslavia, respect for the territorial integrity of
Yugoslavia, Security Council involvement where both Russia and China have veto power and the
presence of Russian (read Slavic) troops in the security presence. Reference to a referendum on
Kosovo independence in three years as proposed at Rambouillet was not in the Miltary-Technical
agreement ending the bombing. In short the very items that Serbia objected to at Rambouillet
were not in the agreement Serbia signed to end hostilities. It seems clear to this observer that the
agreement signed in June would have been agreed to by Serbia, if not the KLA,.at Rambouillet
thus saving the Serbian infrastructure and economy, not to mention human lives. The KLA
cannot be altogether pleased with the agreement and it is likely that it will become a major
problem for the UN and NATO rather than the asset it was felt by NATO to be during the bombing..

The war was a gigantic miscalculation by the West. It did not expect the expulsion of a million
Kosovars from Kosovo. Instead it expected a quick capitulation by Yugoslavia. It was tragically
wrong on both counts and a humanitarian disaster of monumental proportions has occurred. The
agreement to end the conflict was the best that either side could expect to get. However, the
future in Kosovo will be rocky and will require a peacekeeping force including substantial numbers
of U. S. troops for many years. No one was a winner in this war, not Yugoslavia, not the people of
Serbia, not the KLA, not Albanian Kosovars, not Serb Kosovars, not the region where political
instability has increased, not NATO, and certainly not the United States which by virtue of the
bombing had worsened not only relationships with the governments of Russia and China but with
the Russian and Chinese people as well.

The understandings of the United States and its NATO allies about the history of the Balkans
unfortunately does not appear to include events prior to Tito's death in 1980, and Milosevec's
ascendancy to the Presidency of Serbia in 1987. These events have been described above.
However, as Bat Ye'or wrote, also described above, to the Serbs, the five preceeding centuries
consisted of massacres, pillage, slavery and exile of Christians on the part of Muslims during the
Islamic assault into Europe. When Aliya Izetbegovic, the leader of the Muslim faction in Bosnia
stated in 1970:
There can be neither peace nor coexistence between Arabia, the cradle of Islam and non-
Islamic social and political institutions." and "The Islamic movement must, and can, take over
power as soon as it is morally and numerically so strong that it can not only destroy the existing
non- Islamic power, but also build up a new Islamic one", it should have set off alarm bells in the
Capitals of Europe.

But it didn't. In the Bosnian wars of 1992-5 Muslim, Croat (Catholic) and Serb (Orthodox)
factions fought for control of Bosnia. The United States intervened in the conflict decisively with
air power on the side of the Muslims. The result was the Dayton Peace Accords, negotiated in
Dayton, Ohio ansd signed in Paris September 14, 1995. These accords were signed by the
Republic of Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Republic of Croatia, and the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
The accords set up a Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina consisting of two entities: a Croation-
Muslim Federation and a Republica Srpska.

This arrangement has failed the test of time. In October 2002 an article in the International
Herald Tribune realistically suggested that it is time to admit defeat. There is no Nation-State of
Bosnia-Herzegovina, instead there are, in fact, three separate entities, since a Croat-Muslim
Federation is as much a delusion as a country of Bosnia-Herzegovina. This in spite of billions of
dollars of international aid, Western involvement in governance and Western troops. More than
half the pre-war population was displaced during the 1992-1995 war and as of 1998 fewer than
15% had returned, in spite of the fact that return of refugees was a priority of the Dayton

As noted above, Yugoslavia and NATO had signed an agreement to end the NATO bombing
campaign against the infrastructure of Serbia. This agreement was formalized by UN Security
Council Resolution 1244 adopted June 10, 1999. Key elements of this resolution were the right of
all refugees to return home, committment of all member states to the sovereignty and territorial
integrity of Yugoslavia and, most importantly, a framework for a political solution to the Kosovo
crisis based on the following general principles:
- Immediate and verifiable end of violence and repression in Kosovo;

- Withdrawal from Kosovo of military, police and paramilitary forces;

- Deployment in kosovo of effective international civil and security presences, endorsed and
adopted by the United Nations capable of guaranteeing the achievment of common objectives;

-Establishment of an interim administration for Kosovo to be decided by the Security Council

of the United Nations to insure conditions for a peaceful and normal life for all inhabitants of

-The safe and free return of all refugees and displaced persons and unimpeded access to
Kosovo by humanitarian aid organizations;
-A political process towards the establishment of an interim political framework agreement
providing for substantial self-government for Kosovo, taking full account of the Rambouillet
accords and the principles of sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of
yugoslavia and the other countries of the region, and the demiltarization of the KLA;

- Comprehensive approach to the economic development and stabilization of the crisis


It is clear that a political process providing for "substantial" self-government for Kosovo while
"recognizing the territorial integrity of Yugoslavia was a band-aid but not a solution to the Kosovo
crisis. Kosovo was at the time, and indeed still is an integral part of the territory of Serbia within
the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Bat Ye'or pointed out, more fully cited above: “To anyone with
some knowledge of the centuries-old history of Serbian resistance to Ottoman domination, it was
obvious that the return of a form of Islamic power in Bosnia- Herzegovina would be rejected by
Orthodox Serbs". Even more so would be the loss of Kosovo, considered to be "Old Serbia" and
the heart of Serbian culture. It is likewise clear that the Albanian Kosovars want total separation
from Serbia, either as an independent Kosova or as part of a "Greater Albania" that would also
include parts of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro.

In the year following the ending of the war in Kosovo, ethnic Albanian terrorists started
destabilizing the Presovo Valley in Serbia on the Kosovo border by carrying out terrorist attacks.
These incursions were condemned by the UN Security Council but continued. By May 2001 the
situation had worsened to the point that NATO was forced to make common cause with its old
adversary Serbia to disarm the rebels. The Albanian terrorists signed a demilitarization
agreement with NATO but it is doubtful that they have given up their irredentist ambitions. Many
apparently have moved to Macedonia to continue the struggle.

In addition to the Presovo Valley in Serbia, armed Albanians from Kosovo and Albania pressed
hard to destabilize and indeed dis-member Macedonia where at least a quarter of the populaton
is ethnic Albanian. It might be recalled that one of the stated aimes of NATO's campaign against
Serbia was to stabilize the region. This has not occurred. The real concern in Macedonia is that the
part of the country inhabited primarily by ethnic Albanians will become, along with Kosovo, a part
of "Greater Albania." The ethnic Albanian National Liberation Army continues to battle the
Macedonian Army. Peace plans have been signed and shattered. At this time the outcome is in

In October 2001, the governments of Yugoslavia and Serbia jointly issued a declaration that
NATO had failed to enforce the terms of Security Council Resolution 1244. Subsequently the
parliaments of Serbia and Montenegro have been working on a Constitutional Carter for a new
National State of Serbia and Montenegro. This to replace Yugoslavia which was nearly completely
dismembered. A draft of the Charter states that Kosovo is and will remain part of Serbia. This
should come as no surprise to anybody. Also no surprise the parliament of Kosova on Novemer 8,
2002 adopted a resolution rejecting proposals that Kosova will remain part of Serbia.

At this time the situation in the Balkans remains unsettled and dangerous. It is clear that the
the Dayton dream of a unified Bosnia has not happened and does not seem likely to. Nor has it
come to pass that Kosova has achieved its long sought goal of independence from Serbia. The
ambiguity of UN Security Council Resolution 1244 remains, leaving the fate of Kosovo
unresolved. Macedonia is increasingly destabilized by the ethnic Albanian insurgency and the
goal of a greater Albania under Muslim control is a possibility, but not likely. NATO's bombing
campaigns in Bosnia and Serbia stopped the fighting, but settled nothing. We must await the
judgment of the "Cunning of History"

In March, 2007, after seven years of Kosovo being under a United Nations protectorate, UN
Special Envoy Martti Ahtisaari proposed independence. The United States supports this proposal
but Russia categorically does not nor, of course, does Serbia. The United States proposes a three
part plan to stabilize an independent Kososo. First, all high government posts will be distributed
based on religion and ethnicuty, second, a new Constitution must specifically safeguard the rights
of the Serbian minority and third a substantial peacekeeping force must be in place to protect the
Serbs and othe minorities. Nevermind that under the last seven years of the UN protectorate
hundreds of Orthodox Christian churches wereestroyed and thousands of Serbs removed from
Kosovo. For example before the UN took over there were 40,000 Serbs living in Pristina compared
with about a hundred today. In 1971 Kosovo was 75% Muslim compared to at least 92% today.

The Islamic Jihad

The wars in Bosnia and in Serbia about Kosovo occurred before the 9/11 attacks by Islamic
jihadists on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. The Clinton Administration had been
confronted earlier by the 1993 bombing of the WTC, the bombing of our Embassies in Kenya and
Tanzainia in 1998 and the bombing of the USS Cole in Aden Harbor, Yemen in 2000. It considered
these attacks as criminal events and treated them accordingly. In the 2000 election terrorism was
not an issue and was barely discussed by either side. The 9/11 attacks changed all that and the
'War on Terrorism (WOT) was declared by President Bush. It became the policy of the United States
government to go after terrorists and to destroy their sanctuaries wherever they are. In an
address before a joint session of Congress on September 20, 2001 President Bush said this:
Americans are asking: How will we fight and win this war? We will direct every
resource at our command -- every means of diplomacy, every tool of intelligence, every
instrument of law enforcement, every financial influence, and every necessary weapon
of war -- to the disruption and to the defeat of the global terror network.
This war will not be like the war against Iraq a decade ago, with a decisive liberation
of territory and a swift conclusion. It will not look like the air war above Kosovo two
years ago, where no ground troops were used and not a single American was lost in
Our response involves far more than instant retaliation and isolated strikes.
Americans should not expect one battle, but a lengthy campaign, unlike any other we
have ever seen. It may include dramatic strikes, visible on TV, and covert operations,
secret even in success. We will starve terrorists of funding, turn them one against
another, drive them from place to place, until there is no refuge or no rest. And we will
pursue nations that provide aid or safe haven to terrorism. Every nation, in every
region, now has a decision to make. Either you are with us, or you are with the
terrorists. From this day forward, any nation that continues to harbor or support
terrorism will be regarded by the United States as a hostile regime.”
Today the United States together with what used to be called the Christian West, Christendom,
is under attack from Islamic forces with a world wide reach. There is dispute as to whether this
Islamic movement represents Islam per se, or a radical version of Islam. There is no doubt that
these forces get their inspiration, motivation and indeed instructions from the Koran and the life of
Muhammed. This world-wide movement is known as Militant Islam. Other names being used are
Radical Islam, Islamic Jihad, Global Jihad , Islamism and Islamo-fascism. Our enemy sees
this struggle as a religious war and refers to the United States with the word ACrusaders@
bringing back into our consciousness a religious war between Islam and Christianity nearly a
millennia ago. Western Civilization is based on Judeo-Christian morality, the Renaissance, the
Reformation, the Enlightenment combined with the inheritance from classical Rome and Athens.
This is a continuation of a 1400 year jihad against the infidels. The International Front for Jihad
Against the Jews and Crusaders. i.e. al Qaeda,, formally and in writing declared war against
the West, principally the United States and Israel in 1998.
The suras or chapters in the Koran were transcribed first in Mecca and then in Medina. In Mecca
Muhammed courted the Jews but in Medina , after they failed to accept Muhammed as their last
Prophet he turned on them. Ibn Ishaq, in the first biography about Muhammed wrote as follows
about the surrender of the Jews at B. Qurayza; " Then they surrendered, and the apostle
confined them in Medina in the quarter of d. al-Harith, a woman of B. al -Najjar. Then
the apostle went out to the market of Medina (which is still market today) and dug
trenches in it. Then he sent for them and struck off their heads in these trenches as
they were brought to him in batches. Among them was the enemy of Allah Huyayy b.
Akhtab and Ka'b b Assad their chief. There were 600 or 700 in all although some put
the figure as high as 800". This biography of Muhammed was written by a Muslim about one
hundred years after Muhammed’s death
The following are instructions in the Koran as to how Muslims should treat infidels, i.e.
Christians and Jews: ASo when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the
idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in
wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the
poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. And if one
of the idolaters seek protection from you, grant him protection till he hears the word
of Allah, then make him attain his place of safety; this is because they are a people
who do not know.@ When your Lord revealed to the angels: I am with you, therefore
make firm those who believe. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve.
Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them.@ And fight with
them until there is no more persecution and religion should be only for Allah; but if
they desist, then surely Allah sees what they do.@ Sayyid Qtub.

In many ways Sayyid Qutb is the father of the modern jihad movement against infidels and all
unbelievers, in keeping with Muhammed and the Koran. He strongly opposed Western
imperialism and materialism. The immorality and corruption of the Christian West appalled him.
He believed in the righteousness of God and the sinfulness of mankind. In his mind the only hope
for mankind was the universal adoption of the shariah law in all countries . Qtub opposed most
Western ideas including both capitalism and socialism as being materialistic in nature. In his view
only Muslims who followed the Koran and Islamic law were truly Muslims. The remainder are
unbelievers and should be dealt with accordingly. The Shariah law is a universal law, applicable to
all and an Islamic society is the only civilized society. The following paragraph from his book
Milestones written while he was in prison pretty well sums up his beliefs:

“It is not the intention of Islam to force its beliefs on people, but Islam is not
merely beliefs. As we have pointed out, Islam is a declaration of the freedom of man
from servitude to other men. Thus it strives from the beginning to abolish all those
systems and governments which are based on the rule of man over men and the
servitude of one human being to another. When Islam releases people from this
political pressure and presents to them its spiritual message, appealing to their
reason, it gives them complete freedom to accept or not to accept its beliefs. However,
this freedom does not mean that they can make their desires their gods, or that they
can choose to remain in the servitude of other human beings, making some men lords
over others. Whatever system is to be established in the world ought to be on the
authority of Allah, deriving its laws from him alone. Thus every individual is free,
under the protection of this universal system to adopt any belief he wishes to adopt.
This is the only way “the religion” can be purified for Allah alone. The word ‘religion’
includes more than belief; ‘religion’ actually means a way of life, and in Islam this is
based on belief. But in an Islamic system there is room for all kinds of people to follow
their own beliefs, while obeying the laws of the country which are themselves based
on the divine authority.”

Sayyid Qtub was executed by hanging August 29, 1966.

Al Qaeda

Al Qaeda, meaning in Arabic the base, began as a response to the Soviet invasion of
Afghanistan. Osama bin Laden, a wealthy Saudi businessman was a prime financial supporter of
the fledgling organization. He became radicalized when after the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait
American forces located in in the Islamic holy ground of Saudi Arabia. The government of Saudi
Arabia expelled bin Laden in 1991 and he relocated in the Sudan. Al Qaeda attacked and killed
U.S. Rangers in Somalia in 1993, and drove the United States out of Somalia. Based on this
occurrence Bin Laden came to the conclusion that Americans were weak and wouldn’t fight. In
1994 he was expelled from the Sudan and he relocated in Afghanistan where he made an alliance
with the Taliban and set up many terrorist training camps. In 1998 Osama bin Laden made an
alliance with the Egyptian Islamic Jihad and several other Islamic terrorist organizations thus
establishing the International Front for Jihad Against the Jews and Crusaders. This
organization formally and in writing declared war on Israel and the United States:

Praise be to God, who revealed the Book, controls the clouds, defeats factionalism,
and says in His Book: "But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay
the pagans wherever ye find them, seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for
them in every stratagem (of war)"; and peace be upon our Prophet, Muhammad
Bin_'Abdallah, who said: I have been sent with the sword between my hands to ensure
that no one but God is worshipped, God who put my livelihood under the shadow of my
spear and who inflicts humiliation and scorn on those who disobey my orders.

The Arabian Peninsula has never __ since God made it flat, created its desert, and
encircled it with seas __ been stormed by any forces like the crusader armies spreading
in it like locusts, eating its riches and wiping out its plantations. All this is happening
at a time in which nations are attacking Muslims like people fighting over a plate of
food. In the light of the grave situation and the lack of support, we and you are obliged
to discuss current events, and we should all agree on how to settle the matter.

No one argues today about three facts that are known to everyone; we will list
them, in order to remind everyone:

First, for over seven years the United States has been occupying the lands of
Islam in the holiest of places, the Arabian Peninsula, plundering its riches, dictating to
its rulers, humiliating its people, terrorizing its neighbors, and turning its bases in the
Peninsula into a spearhead through which to fight the neighboring Muslim peoples.

If some people have in the past argued about the fact of the occupation, all the
people of the Peninsula have now acknowledged it. The best proof of this is the
Americans' continuing aggression against the Iraqi people using the Peninsula as a
staging post, even though all its rulers are against their territories being used to that
end, but they are helpless.

Second, despite the great devastation inflicted on the Iraqi people by the
crusader Zionist alliance, and despite the huge number of those killed, which has
exceeded 1 million... despite all this, the Americans are once again trying to repeat the
horrific massacres, as though they are not content with the protracted blockade
imposed after the ferocious war or the fragmentation and devastation.

So here they come to annihilate what is left of this people and to humiliate their
Muslim neighbors.

Third, if the Americans' aims behind these wars are religious and economic, the
aim is also to serve the Jews' petty state and divert attention from its occupation of
Jerusalem and murder of Muslims there. The best proof of this is their eagerness to
destroy Iraq, the strongest neighboring Arab state, and their endeavor to fragment all
the states of the region such as Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Sudan into paper
statelets and through their disunion and weakness to guarantee Israel's survival and
the continuation of the brutal crusade occupation of the Peninsula.

All these crimes and sins committed by the Americans are a clear declaration of war on
God, his messenger, and Muslims. And ulema have throughout Islamic history
unanimously agreed that the jihad is an individual duty if the enemy destroys the
Muslim countries. This was revealed by Imam Bin_Qadamah in "Al_ Mughni," Imam
al_Kisa'i in "Al_Bada'i," al_Qurtubi in his interpretation, and the shaykh of al_Islam in
his books, where he said: "As for the fighting to repulse [an enemy], it is aimed at
defending sanctity and religion, and it is a duty as agreed [by the

ulema]. Nothing is more sacred than belief except repulsing an enemy who is attacking
religion and life."

On that basis, and in compliance with God's order, we issue the following fatwa to
all Muslims:

The ruling to kill the Americans and their allies __ civilians and military __ is an
individual duty for every Muslim who can do it in any country in which it is possible to
do it [EMPHASIS ADDED], in order to liberate the al_Aqsa Mosque and the holy mosque
[Mecca] from their grip, and in order for their armies to move out of all the lands of
Islam, defeated and unable to threaten any Muslim. This is in accordance with the
words of Almighty God, "and fight the pagans all together as they fight you all
together," and "fight them until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there
prevail justice and faith in God." <>

This is in addition to the words of Almighty God: "And why should ye not fight in the
cause of God and of those who, being weak, are ill_treated (and oppressed)? __
women and children, whose cry is: 'Our Lord, rescue us from this town, whose people
are oppressors; and raise for us from thee one who will help!'"

We __ with God's help __ call on every Muslim who believes in God and wishes to be
rewarded to comply with God's order to kill the Americans and plunder their money
wherever and whenever they find it. We also call on Muslim ulema, leaders, youths,
and soldiers to launch the raid on Satan's U.S. troops and the devil's supporters allying
with them, and to displace those who are behind them so that they may learn a lesson.

Al Qaeda follows the Salafi/Wahhabi brand of Militant Islam. In 1998 it succeeded in

bombing United States embassies in Kenya and Tanzania and nearly sank the United States
Guided Missile Destroyer USS Cole in Aden Harbor, Yemen in 2000. The capstone of its terrorist
activities at least to date was on September 11, 2001 when it completely demolished the twin
towers of the World Trade Center in New York and heavily damaged the Pentagon in Washington
by flying commercial airliners into them while heavily loaded with aviation fuel and passengers. A
fourth attack on the White House or the Capitol was thwarted by brave passengers who brought
the airliner down in western Pennsylvania.

In response the United States invaded Afghanistan, routing the Taliban, breaking up the
training camps and greatly disrupting the actions of Al Qaeda. The mission is not yet fully
accomplished and there is a resurgence of the Taliban. Osama bin Laden and his number two
Azman al Zawahiri are in hiding somewhere on the Afghanistan Pakistan border.. Although these
two are greatly curtailed in their activities and influence, because al Qaeda is greatly dispersed
and exists with many cells in most countries of the world,it still represents a substantial threat to
the United States, Europe and the rest of the world. The goal of al Qaeda is to establish world
Islamic rule under a Caliph, i.e. on who follows directly in the line from the first Caliphs of the 7th

The modern Shia version of jihad developed in Iran. For a variety of reasons, both political and
religious the Shah was removed from power in January 1979. A month later Imam Ruhollah
Khomeini returned from exile in Paris and was welcomed by an enthusiastic crowd of three million
people. . On November 4, 1979 students, mostly ardent supporters of Khomeini seized control of
the American Embassy in Tehran and imprisoned most of its staff. In March by referendum the
Monarchy was replaced by the Islamic Republic of Islam. In November Khomeini was made
Supreme Leader for Life and “Leader of the Revolution. A new Constitution was established that
established a fully theocratic state with Sharia law as the law of the land. Real power resided in
the hands of the Ayatollahs not the elected government. Since that time Iran has been one of the
major supporters of terrorist organizations in the world including Hamas and Hezbollah.
Government is in the hands of the Ayatollahs not the elected government. The newly elected
President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is cut from the same cloth as the Ayatollahs . He publicly
has made known his belief that the end of times is at hand with the return of the Mahdi soon to
occur. He has stated publicly his disbelief in the reality of the holocaust. He is violently opposed
to all Jews and the United States. Worse of all he is aggressively pursuing nuclear weapons in spite
of a UN resolution. This has the United States, Israel and most Sunni Arab states in the region
highly concerned.

Jihad, fighting to extend the Ummah, i.e. the world of Islam, is an obligation for all Muslims. The
global jihad is by no means restricted to the above discussed countries or Al Qaeda, but is truly
world wide in scope. This holy war to establish the supremacy of Islam over the entire world is
going on in all regions of the world. Somalia recently established an Islamic State modeled on the
Taliban only to see it crumble with the onslaught or troops from Ethiopia. Ethiopia, this once
Christian country from the time of Christ, has its own problems with Islamic militancy and is now
half Muslim. Muslims are destroying Christian churches in many countries including Pakistan,
Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Nigeria the Philippines and Kosovo among others. Islamic terrorist bombings
are taking place all over the world in Christian, Hindu, and Buddhist countries, and in the Muslim
countries Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Morocco and Algeria. A Islamic group that recently killed 30
Muslims in Algiers claimed that its goal was to re-establish Islamic rule in Al-Andalus, i.e. Spain
which was reclaimed to Christianity 500 years ago. Strong Islamic insurgencies are present in the
Philippines and Indonesia. Formerly moderate Muslim countries are being radicalized by radical
Islamists As President Bush has stated this is the ideological struggle of our time and it is multi-
generational in scope and reach. Unfortunately President Bush has been reluctant to call this
ideological war by the name that best decribes it and that is the Islamic Jihad. He has been
reluctant to do that because of a fear that we will be perceived in the Muslim world as
waging a religious war against Islam. The time is well past that as a concern because we are
already accused of waging such a war against all of Islam, which on our part it is not. Recent
opinion polls taken in Islamic countries around the world suggest that 80% of all Muslims believe
the United States is waging war against Islam. We are not. Unfortunately our enemy believes
that it is and has so stated that they are waging a holy war against all infidels especially
Christians and Jews.

Islamic Jihad in the Balkans

It is unfortunate that the situation in the Balkans has apparently not been considered by the
Bush Administration to be part of the war on terror, i.e. the global Islamic jihad. Rather it is held
apart as a separate diplomatic issue to be resolved by diplomacy. Historically, the Balkans has
always been understood to be a "tinder box" of religious and political tensions since at least the
1878 Congress of Berlin. The Balkans is an area of southeastern Europe where Islam had made its
greatest advances against Christendom and where both Catholic and Orthodox Christianity came
in diect contact and conflict with Islam. It is where Chritian boys were taken away from their
parents and made into the Jannissaries,i.e. Islamic warriors for the Ottoman Empire.
Alija Izetbegovic, the President of Bosnia-Herzegovian called for independence for Bosnia-
Herzegovina in 1992 leading to the Bosnia war. In 1970 in his Islamic Declaration he had written
this: “The exhaustive definition of the Islamic Order is: the unity of religion and law,
education and force, ideals and interests, spiritual society and State. The Muslim does
not exist at all as an independent individual…There can be no peace or coexistence
between Islamic faith and non-Islamic faith and institutions. The Islamic movement
must and can take power as soon as it is morally and numerically strong enough not
only to destroy the non-Islamic power but to build up the Islamic one." It is clear that
Europe and the United States blithely ignored clear evidence of what was likely to happen in
In his recent book entitled Islamic Terror and the Balkans Shaul Shay provides some much
needed attention to the Balkans as a conduit for the spread of the Islamic jihad into Europe. After
the collapse of Yugoslavia Izetbegovic visited Tehran to expand and solidify relationships with Iran
and to pursue his goal of an Islamic Bosnia. In response Iran promised a large amount of economic
aid and military aid as well. The Clinton administration approved the shipment of arms from Iran
into Bosnia. Bin Laden and Zawahiri and their organizations in 1992 started to build an
infrastructure to penetrate the Balkans and to eslablish jihadist trainibg camps there. Shortly after
Bin Laden personally visited Bosnia and Albania to examine thes terror networks. The Dayton
Accords of December, 1995 stipulated that the Islamic Muhajadin must leave Bosnia but this did
not happen.
In 1995 twenty five radical Islamic organizations met to plan expanded jihadist activities in the
Balkans. Also on the agenda was planning enhanced ways to penetrate Europe and turn Europe
the dar al harb, i.e. the world of war, into Europe the dar al Islam or the world of Islam. Two of the
9/11 hijackers had links to Al Qaeda in the Balkans. After 9/11 there resulted an escalation of
Islamic attacks against Serbs in Kosovo, southern Serbia and Macedonia, anincreased activity of
the Albanian National Army (ANA) in Kosovo and Macedonia and an escalation of violance in
Bosnia-Herzegovina. ,
As reported by Shay, Islamic charities in the Balkans, from Saudi Arabia, Iran and other Arab
states, havcontributed hundreds of millions of dollars as well as military equipment and supplies
to jihadist organizations in the Balkans. Here is a partial listing of these charities as suppled by

Benevolence International Foundation.

Al Haramain Islamic Foundation.
The Saudi Joint Relief Committee
The Om al Quara Foundation.
Human concern International.
The International Islamic Relief Organization.
The Saudi High Commission.
The Third World Relief Agency.
The Islamic Relief Agency.
International Humanitarie Hifsorganization.
The Qatar Charitable Committee.
Red Crescent Iran.
Kuwaiti Joint Relief Committee.
The Maktab al Kidmat Charity.
Human Relief Organzation.

The list of Islamic charities operating in the Balkans is extensive to say the least. Shay further
reports that Al Qaeda set up a secret organization, CIRKL, to help move contributed funds to
Mujahidin movements and other terror organizations in oreder to estalish terrorist infrastructures
throughout the Balkans.
In 1996 the UN accused Iran of violating the Dayton Peace Accords that ended the Bosnian war.
During the war many Iranain Mujahadin moved into Bosna to figth Serbia. Many didn't leave, as
required, but instead married local women and stayed establishing Islamist networks within the
country. During the war the Clinton Adminstration gave the green light to Iran to ship large
amounts of contraband into Bosnia in violation of the embargo that was in place. Shay estimates
that from 1994-1996 5000 tons of military goods including anti-tank weapons and land to air
missiles into Bosnia. It is notewothy in passing that two of the 9/11 hijackers had links to the Al
Qaeda infra-structure in the Balkans.
In 1992 Sali Berisha became President of Albania, He made clear right away his desire for a
"greater Albania" that would include part of Kosovo and his belief that the struggle in Kosovo by
Muslim Albanians against Serbia was indeed a jihad, that is a holy war on behalf of Islam. Albania
nearly collapsed in economic instability and riots in 1997. During the ensuing chaos firearms,
ammunition and passports moved from Albania to Kosovo. Albania is believed by the United
States government to harbor an Al Qaeda infra-structure.
Kosovo declared its independence from Serbia on February 17 2008 with the backing of the
United States. Kosovo’s new Constitution took effect on June16, 2008 nine years almost to the day
that the Kosovo war ended with UN resolution 1244. President Bush welcomed President Fatmir
Sejdiu and Prime Minister Hashim Thaci of the Republic of Kosovo to the White House on July 21,
2008.According to the earlier announcement from the White House: “The President looks
forward to meeting with President Sejdiu and Prime Minister Thaci during their first
visit to the United States as leaders of an independent Kosovo. The visit will provide
an opportunity for the President to discuss with President Sejdiu and Prime Minister
Thaci his strong support for the efforts of the Kosovo Government to build a
democratic, prosperous, multiethnic state with institutions that serve all of Kosovo's
As reported by Yahoo News on July 17 2008 His Grace ARTEMIJE, Bishop of Ras and Prizren,
and pastor of Orthodox Christians in the Serbian province of Kosovo and Metohija issued the
following statement: "On July 21, President George W. Bush is scheduled to meet with
Hashim Thaci, styled by some 'Prime Minister' of the separatist Albanian Muslim
administration in the Serbian province of Kosovo and Metohija. As pastor of the
Orthodox Christian people of Kosovo, I protest to the fullest possible degree the fact
that President Bush would bring dishonor on his office and sully the good name of the
American nation by receiving such an infamous terrorist, war criminal, and organized
crime chieftain.” This is not good news. The Serbian Parliament is set to reject Kosovo’s
unilateral declaration of independence and Russia has signaled that it will support Belgrade on
this issue.
We are starting to pay the price for the military interventions of NATO in Bosnia and Kosovo in
the 1990's. Hopefully the United States will soon start to realize that the Islamic jihad in the
Balkans in general and in Kosovo in particular is very much an integral part of a world wide Islamic
movement to impose over the entire world Islamic rule under Sharia law and a Caliph who is
literally a follower in a dirct line of authority from the Prophet Muhammed.