When Kosovo declared its independence, Western politicians (including George W. Bush) lined up sans pompoms to cheerlead this new self-determining entity. Clueless people worldwide thought perhaps this was the final step to securing peace in the Balkans, and breathed a sigh of relief before pushing the Balkans out of their collective minds for good. A few writers warned that all was not as the MSM and politicians were letting on, but their ideas were largely dismissed.
While the West has been busy with Afghanistan, Iraq, Credit-Default Swaps, derivatives, President Obama, H1N1, Michael Jackson and Ted Kennedy, the Balkans have been simmering. Kosovo is getting antsy. Last week, Kosovo's president and prime minister walked out of European Union talks. Ethnic Albanians in Kosovo, a hotbed for organized crime, are unhappy over an agreement with EULEX (EU police) to share information with Serbian law enforcement officials. Determined to show the EU just how unhappy they are, the Kosovo Hackers Group broke into the EULEX website last week and left this message:
You cannot sell our country back to Serbia. We, Kosovo's youth, are tired of all the lies. EULEX signs agreement to destroy the future of Kosovo.
Earlier in August a Serbian couple was shot to death in the jurisdiction of Kosovo Police, adding to tensions in the region. Serbian politician Boran Bogdanovic spoke out about the police investigation - arguing that numerous crimes committed against Serbs under the jurisdiction of the Kosovo Police Service remain unsolved.
Elsewhere in the Balkans tension are mounting; the economy is suffering, crime is rising, ethnic and religious friction continues. In July a large fight in Mostar between Bosniaks (Bosnian Muslims) and a group of Wahhabis left one man dead. Bosnia's Islamic Community said the incident was "motivated by growing “Islamophobia” orchestrated by some politicians and the media." Apparently Muslims killing Muslims is now Islamophobic. Will we have to start calling Bosniaks self-hating Muslims?
Taking the rhetoric up a notch, Bosnia's Social Democratic Party issued a press statement this weekend accusing the ruling parties of trying to bring Bosnia and Herzegovina "to the verge of a new war."
Maybe the world should be paying a little more attention to the Balkans. Then again, considering how royally the West messed things up 10 years ago maybe they should just stay out. You can't fix a problem if you don't understand it.