Dance of the devil: Albanian rebels

Albanian rebels make and break agreements with the facility of a prostitute who has been paid before the final act. As the UCPMB in southern Serbia signed ceasefire agreements earlier this week, it was hoped that finally this area of the Balkans could be the first to create a knock-on peace effect throughout the rest of the region. Far from it. The Albanians make and break agreements depending on how much leverage they think they can gain from media coverage of their decisions. Any position they take seems to be immediately followed up by seditious and illegal acts. Mortar attacks near Bujanovac and the abduction of two Yugoslav Army soldiers has signed the death of that treaty. As they made a media show around their unilateral ceasefire in the hills north of Tetovo, nothing was said of their penetration deeper inside Macedonia at the same time. While the world was concentrating on a supposed mass grave, which the Albanians claimed to have been caused by Macedonian security forces, and then came to see that it was the Albanians themselves who had buried civilians (killed by themselves??) to create a media stint, the UCK was organising bus-loads of Albanian fighters to infiltrate themselves into Macedonia in the border region controlled (or not) by the American soldiers of Kfor. There is no doubt that these extremists would be capable of selling their own grandmothers if they could. Such is the total lack of morals shown by this band of bandits over the past few years, the lack of patience demonstrated by all European countries is quite understandable. We now understand why five centuries of Balkan history has tried to restrict these “eagle people” (as they call themselves) into the area behind the mountains of Shqiperia (Land of the Eagles = Albania). The fact is that these extremists have now managed to infiltrate deep inside Macedonian territory and the reports last week that a full attack on Skopje was a possibility are now more than a flight of fantasy. It is reported that hundreds of armed terrorists are pouring into Macedonia through the hole in the frontier, situated in the sector supposedly controlled by the United States’ troops. It is claimed that these troops do not perform night patrols and that their checkpoints are eight kilometres apart, leaving a gaping hole for the terrorists to pass through. The arrival of MI-8 helicopters from Ukraine is welcomed by Skopje to increase its air-power in the field. However, it is unquestionable that much more support will be needed to stem the rising tide of Albanian criminal groups deep inside the Balkans before the whole area flares up.

JOHN ASHTEAD PRAVDA.Ru LONDON