June 22, 2003

ERP KIM Newsletter 22-06-03
Weekend edition

GREATER ALBANIA OR GREATER KOSOVO - MYTH OR REALITY

Translations from the Serbian Press:

VECERNJE NOVOSTI:  BORDER ATTACK FOR A GREATER ALBANIA
VECERNJE NOVOSTI:  ALBANIANS WANT A COUNTRY STRETCHING TO NIS

HISTORICAL ANALYSES:

GREATER ALBANIA EXPLAINED by Carl Savich
The Greater Albania ideology emerged and crystallized with the 1878 League of Prizren. This policy has continued for over a century. The Greater Albania strategy seeks to annex and gain control of territories inhabited by ethnic Albanians even in areas where Albanians are a minority. These "Albanian lands", the Serbian province of Kosovo-Metohija, the Southern Serbia region made up of the Medvedja, Presevo, and Bujanovac areas, southern Montenegro, northern Greece made up of the Janina area, Chameria in the Greater Albania lexicon, and, western Macedonia, Illirida in the Greater Albania nomenclature. (READ MORE)
THE GREATER ALBANIA IDEOLOGY AND THE MACEDONIAN CONFLICT
The objective and goal of the Albanian "Insurgency" or terrorist war in Macedonia is to implement the federalization plan, the partition of Macedonia into Albanian and Slav federal units. The federalization plan demanded by the NLA would result in de facto independence/secession/partition of Macedonia. The federalization plan is modeled on the Kosovo paradigm or blueprint. NATO military intervention and occupation of Macedonia are integral parts of the NLA strategy. NATO intervention is required to establish de facto partition and federalization. The model is Kosovo. With NATO intervention, the NLA which achieve its objective to establish not "greater rights", but a Greater Albania, the goal and objective of the Albanian nationalist agenda for over a century.
GREATER ALBANIA - by Tim Judah
"New York Review of Books - The West had created a monster. Yes, we had severed the head of Greater Serbia only to discover that Balkan nationalism is hydra-headed. In its place we now stood confronted by the evil specter of rabid, expansionist Albanian nationalism, which aimed to create either a Greater Albania or at least a Greater Kosovo.....The prerequisite to creating a Greater Kosovo including parts of Macedonia or a Greater Albania has, of course, to be an independent Kosovo - Tim Judah - READ MORE". KOSOVO SERBIAN ISSUE AND THE GREATER ALBANIA PROJECT by Slavenko Terzich
"Greater Albania" with the leading idea "all Albanians in one state" represents not only a belated example of the national romanticism of the 19th century, but also questions existing internationally recognized borders, jeopardizes stability in the whole of Southeast Europe and threatens to cause a new, third Balkan war. The ambition to set up an ethnically pure Greater Albania at any cost represents an even greater anachronism. The Albanian political and intellectual elite obviously suffer from a large deficiency of European logic.

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BORDER ATTACKS FOR A GREATER ALBANIA

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Vecernje Novosti daily, Belgrade
09 June 2003


BELGRADE (Fonet) - Serbia and Montenegro defense minister Boris Tadic announced on Monday that terrorists are preparing attacks along the borders of so-called Greater Albania and that the status of Kosovo cannot be negotiated until elementary human rights are realized there.

"We have information that terrorist organizations are preparing possible attacks along the entire border zone of the fictional 'Greater Albania'," said Tadic after meeting with Romanian defense minister Ioan Mircea Pascu.

Tadic said that Kosovo is "a hotbed of terrorism" and that terrorism is the biggest threat to peace in southeastern Europe.

Underlining that KFOR and UNMIK are responsible for security in Kosovo, Tadic said that it is essential that the murderers of the Stolic family are found and punished.

"We cannot begin status talks until elementary standards, including the protection of human rights in Kosovo, are realized," said Tadic.

When asked about the return of Serbia and Montenegro security forces to Kosovo, Tadic said that it is not realistic to expect our "personnel" -- the term used in the text of Resolution 1244 -- to be present in Kosovo "in the immediate future.

Resolution 1244 foresees this "personnel," whose total number is not to exceed 1,000, in the role of protecting cultural and historical monuments, carrying out demining and manning border crossings toward Albania.

"INDEPENDENT KOSOVO IS THE FUTURE OF THE BALKANS"

KOSOVSKA MITROVICA (FoNet) - Albanian crown prince Leka Zogu visited Pristina on Monday where he met with international officials and representatives of provisional Kosovo institutions and the diplomatic corps.

On Sunday at a formal dinner commemorating the 125th anniversary of the creation of the Prizren League, Leku Zoga declared that an independent Kosovo is the future of the Balkans.

CONDEMNATION OF BRUTAL CRIME

BELGRADE - Acting Serbian president and Serbian parliamentary speaker Natasa Micic met with representatives of the Initiative Board of Serbs from Kosovo and Metohija headed by Bishop Artemije of Raska-Prizren and Kosovo-Metohija and the head of the district of Kosovo, Dragan Velic. President Micic once again expressed her sharpest condemnation of the brutal murder in Obilic of the members of the Stolic family. She emphasized that this is a great blow not only to the family and friends of the victims but to the entire Serb community in Kosovo and Metohija.

Bishop Artemije expressed his gratitude to the president for making the meeting possible, assessing that the Serbs of Kosovo and Metohija can only turn for help to their country and its highest representatives. He especially condemned the behavior of KFOR, which refused to provide additional security for the remaining Serbs in the area in spite of last week's murders.

Summing up the current situation Bishop Artemije reminded that UNMIK is currently carrying out a the privatization process in Kosovo resulting in the privatization of all property belonging to the Serbian Orthodox Church [prior to nationalization by the Communist authorities in the aftermath of World War II.] Members of the delegation asked President Micic for every and greater effort on the part of the state in order to finally create a unified state strategy with respect to Kosovo and Metohija, because this is the only way to help the Serb community in the Province.

President Micic said that she has insisted in every one of the more than 90 meetings she has had with representatives of the international community on the problems facing the members of the Serb and other non-Albanian communities in Kosovo.

INDEPENDENCE BY YEAR'S END

It is expected that the Greek government will express its concern about the expected new wave of destabilization of the western Balkans at the upcoming EU summit in Thessaloniki as part of exchange between the European Three with leaders of southeastern Europe.

The eminent Greek paper "Ta Nea" in its Sunday edition published an extensive text dedicated to the "expected, relatively rapid independence of Kosovo and Metohija" and Albanian preparations for other regional changes.

According to NATO and other sources, Athens believes, the Kosovo Albanians are determined to proclaim independence by the end of the year, blazing the trail for other Albanian entities in the region as well, first and foremost, in Macedonia. According to "Ta Nea's" sources, Athens is convinced that independence is unavoidable and is already preparing gestures of reconciliation toward the soon to be statelet.

The recent meeting of UNMIK chief Michael Steiner and KFOR commander in chief general Mini with permanent representatives of NATO member countries, according to "Ta Nea", has created the impression that it is too late to change the negative course of events that will impact and destabilize the entire region. It mentions the dissatisfaction of the Kosovo Shiptars with the fact that the status of the province remains unresolved, as well as inadequate progress of democratization and the establishment of law and order.

Citing numerous sources including international representatives, "Ta Nea" writes that the Kosovo Albanians will begin using unilateral dynamic actions, beginning with proclamation of independence, if the final status of the southern Serbian province is not resolved to their satisfaction in upcoming months. Kosovo Albanians actually believe that there will be no significant reactions on the part of the international community, whose attention is focused on other matters.

To this the paper adds the assessment of Italian general Mini, who believes that the independence of Kosovo was supposed to have been proclaimed in June but that there has been a brief delay. As well, in establishing the first armed forces of their new state the Shiptars will rely on the 3,500 - 5,000 members of the Kosovo police.

"Te Nea" reports that a recommendation has been made to the Greek ministry of foreign affairs to establish contact with the Kosovo Albanians, either bilaterally or through the EU and NATO, so that the independence can at least take a controlled form. It is even recommended that Greece offer assistance in equipment for defense, technology and the training of Kosovo police forces. The paper adds an estimate according to which the number of Kosovo Shiptars is greater than the entire population of Albania, concluding that it represents an element that may play a significant role throughout the region and regional policy.

On the other hand, Greek deputy foreign affairs minister Andreas Loverdos, points out in an interview published in the Sunday edition of the widely circulated Athens daily "Elefterotipija" the troubling indicators in the region and the problems that may emerge as a result of possible developments in Kosovo. Loverdos states that Athens is insisting before the EU on keeping the attention of the international community focused on the western Balkans due to troublesome indicators and weak links in the chain of stability and peace in the region.

I. DJORDJEVIC

LIVING IN FEAR

Only about 450 Serbs remain in Obilic today living a life of great hardship, without any freedom of movement and in constant fear of Albanian extremists, Mirce Jakovljevic told "Tanjug" news agency. The Stolic family, Slobodan, Radmila and Ljubinko, who were bestially tortured before being killed by Albanian extremists five days ago, had been targeted for weeks by those wishing to create an ethnically clean Kosovo.

The Albanians were offering the Stolices 250,000 euros for their house and 35 ares [approximately 1 acre] of land located in a prime area of Obilic; however, the family refused to sell its property, said Jakovljevic. He also reminded that Albanian terrorists threw a Molotov cocktail at the house of Nada Stolic, the sister-in-law of the murdered Slobodan, on July 13, 2002.

A similar "notice" was repeated the next day by the terrorists; however, in both cases neighbors managed to put out the fire. The perpetrators of this murder, as in all other instances of attacks and murders of Serbs, have not been found.


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ALBANIANS WANT A COUNTRY STRETCHING TO NIS

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Vecernje Novosti daily, Belgrade
10 June 2003

BUJANOVAC – Albanian terrorists are not giving up on their eternal dream, the concept of a ''Greater Albania,'' which they want to realize through a new armed conflict in the south of Serbia and Macedonia.

After open threats of a ''bloody spring,'' which the illegal ''Albanian National Army'' (ANA) published on its website, two days ago Serbia and Montenegro defense minister Boris Tadic warned of new terrorist activities, who said attacks are being prepared along the edges of so-called Greater Albania.

Where, in fact, are the borders of this ''Greater Albania'' that the terrorists wish to draw? According to several sources, they imagine their state on the basis of a decision passed as early as late May-early June 1878, at a large conference in Prizren, where over 300 delegates from all ''Albanian regions'' gathered.

On that occasion, the gathering passed the decision that an independent, ethnically pure Albanian state encompassing all ''Albanian lands'' should be established.

The state would consist of four districts (or principalities). The first district would include southern Albania and Ipeiros (Ioanina); the second district would be comprised of northern and central Albania (Shkoder, Tirana and Elbasan); the third would encompass parts of Macedonia (Skopje, Debar, Gostivar, Prilep, Veles, Bitolj and Ohrid); and the fourth, Kosovo and parts of southern Serbia and Macedonia (Pec, Djakovica, Prizren, Novi Pazar, Mitrovica, Sjenica, Pristina, Gnjilane, Presevo and Kumanovo).

STATE ON THE WEB

This concept of ''Greater Albania'' continues to be advocated to this day because the region the terrorists are largely concentrating on includes the south of Serbia, practically all the way to the outskirts of Nis; the greater part of Macedonia as far as Veles; and the part of southwestern Greece they call ''Chamuria.''

A thus conceived ''Greater Albania'' is largely promoted by the terrorists on the website of the ANA, where maps of their imaginary country are also published. In fact, a month ago the ANA issued a new statement on this site calling on ''all Albanians from all territories to massively join in the battle for liberation and national unification.'' The command of the Adem Jashari division, which acts under the auspices of the ANA, emphasizes in the statement that the invitation is ''addressed to all Albanian institutions, political parties, non-governmental organizations, and patriotic intellectuals.''

''We call on all of them to join the front for national unification of the Albanians and its military organ, the Albanian National Army, and to place all their resources in the service of our national goal: the liberation and national reunification of all Albanians,'' says the ANA statement.

TIRANA THE CAPITAL

Immediately prior to this, ''Albanian National Army'' commander general Vigan Gradica disclosed that the ANA is in the process of transitioning from its guerrilla phase of activity to a state of battle readiness leading to open war.

Gradica said that this united national front is calling on all political parties both inside and outside Albania to work together toward ''the unification of all Albanian lands.'' According to Gradica, the ANA is also working with Albanian allies who had already helped them in critical moments.

''As far as the institutional administration of 'Greater Albania' is concerned, the ANA believes that the Albanian people should have one anthem, one flag, one language, one state symbol and that they should be represented before the United Nations and other international organizations solely by Tirana,'' said Gradica.

DARDANIA

One of the commanders of the armed Albanians, Ridvan Chazimu, also known as Commander Leshi (37), who was killed in May 2001, is still remember for the speech he gave before several hundred supporters and local residents of the village of Veliki Trnovac at the beginning of 2001.

Hoisting the Albanian flag with the black double-headed eagle in the village center, Leshi reminded local Albanians that ''the flag of freedom comes to their village exactly one year since Jonuz Musliu, one of the founders of the Liberation Army of Presevo, Bujanovac and Medvedja (OVPMB), proclaimed the establishment of the OVPMB on January 26, 2000 in the village of Dobrosin, and officially at the funeral of three of our fallen fighters: Ekrem Hoxa, Bekim Berisha and Skelzen Krasni.''

''We are here to expel from Dardania the last remaining members of the Serbian occupational forces and to prevent them from ever again setting foot in our land... We have guns, we have the will, and we have a large liberated territory! We only need to hold out until spring, when our beautiful Dardania will be green once more, and then no Serbian soldier or policeman on this side nor member of KFOR on the other will dare to touch us,'' emphasized Leshi.

M. RISTOVIC

SHIELD AGAINST STEINER

BELGRADE – The request of Serbian premier Zoran Zivkovic to the UN Security Council - that Kosovo and Metohija be returned to its ''previous state'' - i.e., that a full protectorate by the international community be re-established in the Province, has largely resulted in initial confusion among some and posed the question of what this actually means in practical terms.

''Novosti'' sought an answer from expert attorneys, political scientists, and politicians who are experts on Kosovo. Opinions and interpretations differed: from changes would mean a return to the original application of Resolution 1244 to the belief that a full protectorate is possible only by changing Resolution 1244 or – by suspending it, and preparing and adopting a new one by the UN Security Council!

''A protectorate, by definition, means the establishment of an administration in which the security forces of the international community have absolute power. That's how things started in 1999, with the intention of gradually, with the assistance of the international community, building a multiethnic society and multiethnic institutions,'' Branko Radujko, advisor to Zoran Zivkovic on Kosovo and Metohija, reminds us during an interview with ''Novosti''. ''Resolution 1244 states that Kosovo and Metohija is an integral part of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the primary successor of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.''

The intent, according to Radujko, was to move from an initial protectorate presuming the absolute engagement of the international community, i.e., KFOR and UNMIK, in providing protection for all citizens, toward the building and establishment of provisional institutions. But time is clearly not yet ripe for this in Kosovo and Metohija.

''That is why Serbia is warning that it is better to retain the previous state, that is, the original protectorate,'' said Radujko. ''However, UNMIK mission chief Michael Steiner has transferred some authorities to the provisional Kosovo institutions, thus prejudicing the situation in Kosovo and Metohija. The result is what we have now: an escalation in violence and terrorism! That is why in the immediate future the international community needs to work on security and the establishment of legal and political security for the non-Albanian population in Kosovo. In Belgrade's opinion, this could be accomplished by returning to the protectorate foreseen by Resolution 1244. The provisional institutions 'proclaimed' by Steiner would be discontinued and this would at least partially correct past mistakes,'' said Radujko.

''STANDARDS'' GAME

''Since we, as a state, are adhering to all responsibilities we accepted with Resolution 1244, we believe that the best solution would be to suspend existing institutions in Kosovo and Metohija, to analyze the present situation and to correct everything that stuck out in the resolution,'' believes Zoran Lutovac, also an advisor to the Serbian premier.

The views of Lutovac and Radujko on the solution of the Kosovo problem and the discovery of a method by which the non-Albanian population can remain and survive in the southern Serbian province are the same. What ''our side'' can do now is to ask the international community to protect people, say the Serbian premier's advisors.

''In practice, requesting the re-establishment of a full protectorate means preventing the provisional Kosovo institutions from further activity until standards foreseen by Resolution 1244 have been fulfilled. If the formulation is 'standards before status', then that should be the general principle,'' says Lutovac. ''The transfer of authorities should not have taken place after standards were met, not before, as Steiner has done. A second reason for returning to a full protectorate is that further authorities must not be transferred until standards are fulfilled. The process of resolving the Kosovo problem cannot be initiated without the participation of Belgrade, Pristina and the international community because if any one of the key players is excluded, it would only lead to an exacerbation of the problem.''

POSSIBLE IF...

Dr. Radoslav Stojanovic, however, believes that returning to a full protectorate, as the Serbian premier requested of the international community, would only be possible by means of a new resolution in the UN Security Council:

''This new resolution would have to either suspend Resolution 1244, which has the task of transferring power from the international factors to provisional organs. Zoran Zivkovic's request can only be taken seriously and accepted if a request is sent to the U Security Council to change Resolution 1244. The Security Council can then either pass a new resolution or defer the implementation of Resolution 1244 for a fixed period,'' believes Dr. Stojanovic. ''Otherwise, while Resolution 1244 is still in the process of being implemented, a return to a full protectorate is not possible!''

When reminded that both the Serbian premier and experts engaged on the resolution of the Kosovo problem are citing the provisions of Resolution 1244 on the establishment and guarantee of security, freedom of movement, basic human rights for all Kosovo citizens, etc., Dr. Stojanovic responds:

''That does not have anything to do with Resolution 1244. It is true that the resolution foresees all these things but that is not something that, by virtue of the fact that it is foreseen, must necessarily also be realized. The law proscribes what should be and in Kosovo that is not yet resolved. Whether there are deficiencies in the international community and why things are the way they are – these are different questions that can be initiated before the international community. The resolution of the problem of Kosovo is both legal and political. Without a legal basis it cannot be resolved; however, a legal basis by itself cannot solve, either.''

A FARCE

Advocating a return to a full protectorate in Kosovo and Metohija does not mean anything else but the consistent implementation of Resolution 1244, according to Vladimir Bozovic, the head of the human rights bureau of the Coordinating Center for Kosovo and Metohija.

''A return to the full and consistent implementation of Resolution 1244 means the establishment of peace, security, and freedom of movement for all citizens of Kosovo and Metohija,'' says Bozovic. ''Instead of implementing the basic provisions of Resolution 1244, Steiner has gone beyond in transferring some authorities to the provisional Kosovo institutions. This was a disastrous process because these institutions are not multiethnic, but ethnic Albanian.

''The expectation that multiethnicity in Kosovo and Metohija will begin to work by itself is unrealistic and represents a political farce!''

Andjelka R. POPOVIC

''DRAMATICALLY IMPROVED'' SITUATION

BELGRADE (Beta) – UNMIK spokesman Simon Haselock has announced that the security situation in Kosovo has ''dramatically improved.''

Despite the murder of the three members of the Stolic family in Obilic, in the last year there has been only one other ethnically motivated murder, and the level of violence against non-Albanians is significantly reduced, said Haselock.

He emphasized that claims that Serbs are not returning to Kosovo are inaccurate. "We have proclaimed this summer to be the summer of return. Since the beginning of the year a thousand people have returned, and there are 37 municipal projects in progress for which we have ensured both finances and the acquiescence of local authorities."

TELL GOD'S TRUTH

BELGRADE - We must mobilize state officials, our diplomats, all our institutions; bombard international institutions every day with reports regarding human rights violations in Kosovo and Metohija, and demand compliance with Resolution 1244, said Serbia and Montenegro parliamentary speaker Dragoljub Micunovic on Tuesday during talks with a delegation of Serbs from Kosovo and Metohija headed by Bishop Artemije.

Micunovic begged for the understanding from the members of the delegation, whose primary reason for coming to Belgrade was the murder of the three members of the Stolic family in Obilic.

"Do not overestimate our powers. Let us be realistic and let us attempt to do something within the framework of what is possible," Micunovic said. He added that representatives of our state organs would take advantage of the upcoming EU summit in Thessaloniki to bring this issue to the attention of Europe. What we have is a situation where it is impossible for people to return to their homes. Without respect for this basic human right, which is built into Resolution 1244 under the definition of "multiethnic Kosovo," there can be no peace in the region.

Bishop Artemije, who in his greeting to the parliamentary speaker noted that the two had seen each other more frequently when they were both members of the opposition [against the Milosevic regime], said that he was dissatisfied with state organs' activities to date on a program to return refugees to their homes. Even the few Serbs that remain in Kosovo and Metohija do not feel they have the support of the state, said the Bishop, reminding that if there are no more Serbs in Kosovo, there will be no more Kosovo and Metohija problem because the state will have no one left there to represent.

A SHAME

"The behavior of some people in the NGOs who reacted when it was believed that Albanian rights were being violated and who received millions in assistance from international organizations is shameful; today none of them dares to say a word in Serbia regarding the violation of rights of the Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija," said Micunovic, adding that "as a result they have lost their credibility."

"Today these people are looked down upon in the world because of how they betrayed the idea of human equality and human rights."

J. K.

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HISTORICAL ANALYSES OF THE GREATER ALBANIA (KOSOVO) ISSUE:


GREATER ALBANIA EXPLAINED - CARL SAVICH

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by Carl K. Savich

Introduction

The so-called Albanian National Liberation Army (NLA), made up of veterans of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA or UCK, Ushtria Clirimtare e Kosoves in Albanian)), in February, 2001, began an infiltration and invasion of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), seeking to seize and occupy territory. The so-called Liberation Army of Presevo, Medvedja, and Bujanovac (LAPMB, or UCPMB) has been waging a year-long war in the so-called Security or Buffer Zone in Southern Serbia, occupying villages and territory and killing Yugoslav policemen and soldiers. In Kosovo, under NATO/UN occupation and "administration", the Albanians, who now control the Serbian province, have ethnically cleansed over 230,000 Kosovo Serbs and other non-Albanians, such as Roma, Slavic Muslims, Turks, Jews, creating an ethnically pure and homogenous region. During the NATO/UN occupation, Albanians destroyed over 100 Serbian Orthodox churches, shrines, and cemeteries. The NLA, driven from the Tanusevci area of northern Macedonia, moved to the Tetovo (Tetova in Albanian) area in the northwestern Sar Planina region and Polog Valley and attacked the city as NATO and the UN did nothing, being neutral observers as the NLA violated the sovereignty of Macedonia and crossed into the UN-recognized borders of FYROM as if they did not exist at all. So-called Western political analysts have concluded that the political goal and objective of the Albanians is the creation of a Greater Albania or what is the same thing, a "Greater Kosovo" or Greater Kosova. What is the origin and history of the Albanian objective to create a Greater Albania? The Albanian drive to create an ethnically pure and homogenous Greater Albania is not new, but is an ongoing process that emerged in 1878 with the League of Prizren in Kosovo. The aim and objective to create a Greater Albania has continued and evolved for over a hundred years, a century-long territorial and political aim and goal.

1878 League of Prizren

After the defeat of the Ottoman Empire in the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, Albanian nationalist leaders convened a meeting on June 10, 1878 in Prizren in Kosovo, attended by 300 delegates, mostly from Kosovo and Western Macedonia, and Muslim leaders from Bosnia-Hercegovina and the Sandzak. They founded the Albanian League of Prizren, "the League for defending the rights of the Albanian people", the Prizren League, which had as its main goal and purpose "to organize political and military opposition to the dismemberment of Albanian-inhabited territory." The so-called League met in a Prizren mosque where a 60-member board headed by Abdul Bey Frasheri drafted a memorandum, which was submitted to the leaders convened at the Congress of Berlin. The Prizren League sought to unite the vilayets or provinces of the Ottoman Empire of Janina or Janjevo centered in Northern Greece, the Chameria region, Bitola or Bitolj (Monastir) centered in Macedonia, the Illirida region, Skutari or Shkoder centered near Montenegro, and Kosovo, Kosovo-Metohija, into a single administrative and political unit, a territory which united all the Albanian-inhabited regions of the Balkans into a Greater Albania. The Prizren League was crucial in uniting Albanian leaders in creating and establishing a political and nationalist ideology and political program and agenda to create an Albanian nation or state. Historically, there had never been an Albanian nation or state. Medieval attempts to forge a unified Albanian nation or state under Gjergj Kastrioti, Skanderbeg, had failed. The emergence of an Albanian nationalist ideology was in reaction to the nationalist independence and liberation movements of Orthodox Serbians, Greeks, Bulgarians, and Balkan Orthodox Slavs. The emergence of a nationalist ideology of Greater Albania was precipitated by the defeat of the Ottoman Turks in 1878, a defeat which endangered the Albanian position in the Ottoman Empire. The Orthodox Slavs, the rayah or subhumans, the second-class citizens, were gaining independence from the Ottoman occupation. In the Ottoman Empire, status and position had been achieved through religion and not through nationality. By converting to Islam, one could gain increased property rights and a higher and social position and gain dominance over the subhuman rayah, Orthodox Slav Christians. In 1877, British archeologist Sir Arthur Evans as an eyewitness personally observed how the subhuman rayah were treated in Bosnia: "They treated them like a herd of cattle". After 1878, nationality and nationalism became more dominant in the Ottoman Empire as ethnicity and nationality became decisive factors in unification. The Albanian population was made up of Roman Catholics, two sects of Islam, Sunni and Bektashi, and Orthodox Christians. Religion, Islam, could not be the sole unifying force. A nationalist ideology was required. The 1878 League of Prizren is significant because the Albanians now emerged with a nationalist agenda and ideology to create a united Albanian state.

The 1875 Insurrection or Revolution in Bosnia-Hercegovina by the Orthodox Serbian populations and the subsequent Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78 created turmoil and upheavals in the Balkans. The Russian military forces defeated the Ottoman Turkish troops in the Balkans, endangering Albanian dominance in the region. Ethnic Albanians, Turks, and Cherkezes retaliated against the Serbian Orthodox populations in Kosovo-Metohija and the surrounding regions. Approximately 200,000 Orthodox Serbian refugees fled into Serbia to escape the massacres and terror. Following the 1878 Treaty of San Stefano, Albanian leaders from Pec, Djakovica, Gusinje, Ljuma, and from Debar and Tetovo in present-day Macedonia, convened a meeting wherein they discussed their positions and sought to establish a common strategy. Italy sponsored the Italian-Albanian Committee to promote Albanian national aspirations and to gain influence in the Balkans. In 1877 in Istanbul (Constantinople), Turkey sponsored the Central Committee for Defending Albanian Rights, which was established seeking the creation of an autonomous Albanian vilayet or province within the Ottoman Empire made up of the Janjevo, Scutari, Kosovo, and Bitolj or Bitola in southern Macedonia, and the Salonika vilayets. The Committee, made up of Zija Prishtina, Sami Frasheri, Jani Vreto, Pashko Vaso, and Abdul Bey Frasheri, sought to maintain the status quo in the Ottoman Empire.
The Prizren League outlined territories that were to be included in a unified, ethnic Albania, a Greater Albania. The Greater Albania envisioned by the League would consist of the following territories: 1) north and central Albania made up of the Scutari, Tirana, and Elbasan regions, including territory from southern Montenegro; 2) western Macedonia made up of the Tetotvo (Tetova in Albanian), Debar, Skopje (Shkupi in Albanian, Uskup or Uskub in Turkish), Gostivar, Ohrid, Bitolj or Bitola, Veles, Prilep regions, or "Illirida" in the Greater Albania lexicon; 3) southern Albania made up of the Epirus and Janina regions of northern Greece, or "Chameria" ; and, 4) the Kosovo-Metohija and Rashka region that was part of Stara Srbija (Ancient Serbia), made up of the Prizren, Pristina, Kosovska Mitrovica, Gnjilane, Pec, Djakovica, Presevo, Sjenica, Novi Pazar, and Kumanovo regions, "Kosova" or "Greater Kosovo". During the period 1876 to 1912, the approximately 150,000 Orthodox Serbs were ethnically cleansed or driven out of the Kosovo vilayet. During this period, Serbian Orthodox were murdered, their property was plundered, Orthodox churches and monasteries and cemeteries were desecrated and vandalized, Serbian women and girls were raped and kidnapped, and Serbian property was looted and robbed, a systematic and planned policy to create an ethnically pure Greater Albania. The members of the Prizren League were beys and agas, wealthy and privileged landowners who sought to maintain those privileges and status within the Ottoman feudal system. They opposed a multi-ethnic policy of ethnic tolerance and were anti-Serbian and anti-Slavic, anti-reformist, and anti-democratic. Many of the "Albanian lands" they claimed for "Greater Albania" or "Ethnic Albania" had never been a part of Albania and many parts of the territory were not majority Albanian areas. Indeed, before 1912, Albania or Shqiperia, had never existed as a nation or state. Albanians, or Shqiptars, themselves were divided into the Ghegs and the Tosks who did not speak an identical language, but different dialects of Shqip.

The Albanian beys and agas did not want to lose their privileges and properties, which a change in the status quo would entail.

In the Kararname, or The Book of Decisions, the statute of the League of Prizren, these Albanian leaders sought to preserve and maintain the territorial integrity of the Ottoman Empire in the Balkans by supporting the Turkish Sultan, Islamic law as established in the Shariah or Sheriat, and "to struggle in arms to defend the wholeness of the territories" as enunciated in Article 1. In Article 6, the League opposed any territorial changes of Serbia and Bulgaria: "We should not allow foreign armies to tread our land. We should not recognize Bulgaria's name. If Serbia does not leave peacefully the illegally occupied countries, we should send bashibazouks (akindjias) and strive until the end to liberate these regions, including Montenegro." From the four vilayets of Kosovo, Scutari, Janjevo, and Bitola or Bitolj, they requested the formation of a united Albanian vilayet.

The pro-Ottoman Empire, pro-Islamic, pro-Turkish orientation of the Prizren League garnered support within the Ottoman Empire. According to a report by the Italian consul in Scutari, the Turkish political and military leaders supported and sponsored the formation of the League, paid for the transportation of the Albanian delegates to Prizren, and supplied them with weapons, ammunition, and supplies. An Austro-Hungarian diplomatic officer stated that the Turkish leaders "armed the local Muslim Albanians with excellent guns, provided them with ammunition and granted authority upon their leaders." He warned that the Turkish authorities "would no longer be able to induce the people to lay down their arms, and the consequences soon to arise will be situations on which the Porte will have to count." Turkey thus supported the Prizren League because such support advanced Turkish interests in the Balkans. The Albanian leaders supported Turkey because Turkey advanced the interests and aims of Albanians, of advancing the goal of a Greater Albania. But at the Congress of Berlin, Turkey was not able to promote a Greater Albania and Albanian interests. The Albanian leaders then turned on the Ottoman Turks and demanded complete autonomy. The Prizren League had 16,000 armed insurgents under its control who launched an insurgency against the Ottoman Empire. The Albanian insurgents were able to kill Mehmed Ali Pasha, the Turkish emissary, in Djakovica in August, 1878. The League took over control from the Turks in the Kosovo-Metohija towns of Vucitrn, Pec, Kosovska Mitrovica, Prizren, and Djakovica. Guided by the autonomous movement, the League rejected Turkish authority and sought complete secession from Turkey. Turkish commander Dervish Pasha re-occupied the areas seized by the Albanian insurgents and destroyed the League, arresting its leaders.

The Greater Albania political and nationalist ideology and aim would be revived in the Pec League of 1899. Moreover, the Greater Albania ideology would be taken up and advocated and sponsored by Austria-Hungary and Italy as a bulwark against Orthodox and Slavic influence in the Balkans. Like the Ottoman Empire before them, Austria-Hungary and Italy, and later Germany and the United States, would sponsor a Greater Albania to advance their expansionist and strategic geopolitical interests in the Balkans. Essential in the ideology of Greater Albania is the support of a Great Powers or a Superpower to achieve the aims. Why is foreign intervention and sponsorship vital? The aims of the Greater Albania ideology are territorial expansion at the expense of neighboring sovereign nations and states. Greater Albania is not a movement of national independence, in other words, but a shifting of borders. Albanians have a national homeland or national state, Albania or Shqiperia, established in 1912. What the Greater Albania strategy seeks to do, however, is to change internationally recognized and thus legal borders. Ipso facto the Greater Albania strategy is illegal and violates all international laws, agreements, and covenants. The Greater Albania ideology is, then, illegal, militant, aggressive, and, most significantly, requires outside foreign intervention to succeed, requires the intervention of a Great Power or Superpower, Ottoman Turkey, Austria-Hungary, Italy, Germany, or the United States. All of the above-mentioned foreign powers have in turn supported and sponsored a Greater Albania. The pattern, and the lesson for us, is clear. Foreign military and political intervention is crucial in the Greater Albania ideology. The 1878 Prizren League grasped this completely. Their expansionist and nationalist agenda required Turkish support. Without that support, Greater Albania would fail.

A second required element in the Greater Albania strategy is to create racial or ethnic polarization, to create ethnic and racial hatred and enmity, to create an ius versus "them" dichotomy based on race or ethnicity. The Kosovo conflict becomes one between the Albanian population and the non-Albanian populations, the Serbian Orthodox population, but also, Roma, Slavic Muslims, and Turks, ethnic/racial polarization or polarity results, needed to maintain enmity and conflict. In short, policies, political measures, political, social, or economic issues do not figure in this equation, they are secondary if not negligible and irrelevant. What motives the Greater Albania strategy is solely ethnicity, it is an ethnic conflict, not a political or economic or social conflict. The Greater Albania strategists demand an ethnically homogenous Albanian state. This is the only aim or goal or objective. The policy is very simple. But to achieve it, non-Albanian populations must be targeted to achieve enmity and to provide a justification or rationale for establishing an "Albanian state". A multi-ethnic and pluralistic approach is anathema. Ethnic diversity and tolerance are unacceptable. This is why over 100 Serbian Orthodox churches have been demolished and destroyed as part of the Greater Albania strategy. This is why 230,000 Kosovo Serbs were driven out since the NATO occupation or "UN-rule". Multi-ethnicity and plurality defeat the purpose of the Greater Albania strategy, which is to create an ethnically homogenous, ethnically pure Albanian state or statelet. Co-existence with other ethnic groups and populations is not possible. Thus, non-Albanian ethnic groups are targeted for elimination, expulsion, or eradication. They are rationalized as "revenge killings" or "retaliatory killings". But they achieve the ultimate aims of the Greater Albania strategy, to create an ethnically cleansed Greater Albania.

A third salient feature of the Greater Albania policy is to establish ethnic homogeneity or ethnically pure territories. Ethnic homogeneity is required to establish a justification or rationalization for the territorial aggrandizement, for the change in borders to enlarge Albania. A third crucial element of the Greater Albania policy, then, is to target the original or indigenous population for expulsion and eradication. The policy of ethnic cleansing or the expulsion of the indigenous inhabitants of a region is a necessary component of the strategy. The British journalist and historian Nora Beloff visited Kosovo in 1980 while doing research for her book Titoís Flawed Legacy. She wrote that she "visited demolished churches, desecrated cemeteries, and the Kosovo villages ëcleansedí of Serbs." She stated that ethnic cleansing in theory and practice was endemic in Kosovo, where hundreds of thousands of Orthodox Serbs were forced to flee when the province was under Albanian control: "Indeed, it was in Kosovo in 1980, while writing my book, that for the first time since the Nazi era, I heard that epithet." Beloff concluded that Albanian policy was motivated by a systematic plan to drive out the Serbian Orthodox population through ethnic cleansing and that the Albanians had "not the faintest interest in human rights." The Greater Albania strategy thus targets a population for elimination through expulsions, i.e., ethnic cleansing. But how are Albanian leaders able to camouflage and mask the real objectives behind the strategy?

The fourth requirement is propaganda or information, infowar. This is where propaganda is all-important. The Great Powers and Superpowers have vast information or propaganda machines and media which they control and manipulate. No dissent or rational analysis can withstand this propaganda or information or infowar barrage. A fourth essential ingredient of the Greater Albania strategy then is propaganda or information warfare. Because, as we have seen, the Greater Albania policy is inherently illegal and violates all international laws, customs, and covenants, a propaganda justification must be created for the policy to continue and evolve. In short, propaganda is essential. Propaganda or information technology, the US-coined euphemism, falsifies and mischaracterizes the factual scenario. Information technology alters the conflict from an illegal land grab and change of borders into a conflict over the issue of human and civil rights and humanitarian concerns. In Macedonia, for instance, the ethnic Albanian minority has been given their own Albanian-language university in Tetovo, they can freely use their own language, guaranteed in the Macedonian Constitution, like in Quebec, Canada, where there is a dual language, and they are democratically and demographically represented in local political bodies and in the federal Macedonian government. Where are the human rights abuses and "repression" and "oppression" the US information technology and information technologists clamor about? There are none. The issue has been reduced to meaninglessness or absurdity, a reductio ad absurdum. In the recent attack on Tetovo by Albanian guerrillas, veterans of the KLA, US media reports presented conflicting, ambiguous, and contradictory rationales for the attack. The Albanian guerrillas were attacking to achieve a "Greater Kosovo", to enlarge the territory of Kosovo, to achieve a "Greater Albania", to unite all areas inhabited by Albanians into a single state, to "gain greater power", to "gain greater rights", to "seize the city of Tetovo". The information technologist has yet to devise a common rationale and so we get contradictory rationales. But the pattern is clear: The ethnic Albanian "insurgency" is motivated by a concern for human rights and greater freedom. This is the propaganda rationale ultimately. For the Greater Albania policy to succeed, a propaganda justification or rationale must be accepted to overcome its inherent illegality. For example, the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999, an illegal act according to all international laws, guidelines, agreements, and covenants, was justified because it would "prevent a genocide", a genocide that subsequently was found not to have occurred. But the point is clear: The Greater Albania strategy requires a propaganda/ information technology rationale to overcome the inherent illegality.

A fifth crucial element of the Greater Albania strategy is the use of military force, of aggressive, physical, armed conflict. In the conflicts in Kosovo-Metohija, Southern Serbia, and Macedonia, a guerrilla insurgency was required; an armed military force was needed. In Kosovo, the Kosovo Liberation Army emerged, in Southern Serbia, the Liberation Army of Presevo, Medvedja, and Bujanovac, and in Macedonia, the National Liberation Army, all relying on a common KLA core. These troops have been armed, trained, supplied, and sponsored by a foreign interventionist state, the United States. The Pentagon, the CIA, and MPRI, Inc., Military Professional Resources, Incorporated, have armed, trained, and supplied the Greater Albania insurgents and guerrillas. MPRI is a private firm of 2,000 retired generals and admirals, former Pentagon and NATO generals and personnel with close links to the US government, based in Alexandria, Virginia. They provide military training for fledgling democracies and armed insurgencies. Armed conflict is required for several reasons: 1) to create an imperative for intervention by creating a "humanitarian catastrophe or disaster", by creating a conflict that an foreign intervention can resolve; 2) to put pressure on the government being attacked to negotiate with the Greater Albania "rebels" or "insurgents"; 3) to establish control and occupation of the terrain by the insurgents; 4) to overcome the illegality of a border change, to create a war that masks this illegality; to "internationalize" the conflict 5) to drive out the indigenous population; and, 6) to give the foreign interventionist power a surrogate physical and military presence in the region. In short, then, because the Greater Albania strategy is illegal under international law, its objectives cannot be achieved legally. Thus, a physical, military conflict is necessary, or a war.

The Greater Albania ideology emerged and crystallized with the 1878 League of Prizren. This policy has continued for over a century. The Greater Albania strategy seeks to annex and gain control of territories inhabited by ethnic Albanians even in areas where Albanians are a minority. These "Albanian lands", the Serbian province of Kosovo-Metohija, the Southern Serbia region made up of the Medvedja, Presevo, and Bujanovac areas, southern Montenegro, northern Greece made up of the Janina area, Chameria in the Greater Albania lexicon, and, western Macedonia, Illirida in the Greater Albania nomenclature.

There are five essential requirements or elements in the Greater Albania ideology and policy: 1) there must be foreign intervention and sponsorship, a Great Power or a Superpower must intervene; 2) an ethnic group(s) or population(s) must be targeted as the "enemy", as the people who "repress/oppress" the Albanian "victims", in Kosovo, the targets were the Serbian Orthodox, Roma, Slavic Muslims, Turks, and Jews, in southern Montenegro, it is Montenegrins, in Macedonia, it is Orthodox Macedonian Slavs; 3) ethnic homogeneity and the establishment of ethnically pure regions is essential: 4) to overcome the illegality of the Greater Albania strategy which consists of violating the sovereignty of a neighboring state, propaganda or information technology is needed, such as the media of the free world or of the West; and, finally 5) an armed military conflict or insurgency is needed. The Greater Albania ideology and policy has not changed since it was established in 1878. The Greater Albania strategy is guided by the same aims and strategies.

Original link - SERBIANNA.COM

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THE GREATER ALBANIA IDEOLOGY AND THE MACEDONIAN CONFLICT

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by Carl K. Savich


Introduction

The Greater Albania ideology and strategy has guided Albanian political aims in the Balkans for over a century. The strategy is anti-Slavic, anti-Orthodox, targeting the Serbian, Macedonian, and Greek populations. What unites Greater Albania nationalists is a focus on ethnic conflict and territorial aggrandizement or annexation of Serbian, Macedonian, and Greek territory. To achieve the Greater Albania objectives requires ethnic conflict. What is the origin of the Greater Albania movement?

The Macedonian conflict began when NATO-armed and NATO-trained KLA veterans illegally crossed the international border between the FYROM and the Yugoslav province of Kosovo, under NATO occupation, in January-February, 2001. NATO failed to interdict these KLA/NLA incursions and infiltrations from NATO-run Kosovo. NATO collusion with the KLA/NLA in their illegal incursions ignited the Macedonian conflict. But how is that conflict to be comprehended and understood?

The Macedonian conflict presents an epistemological issue, an issue of how we comprehend information and how we process knowledge. Governments and media dictate and determine how we comprehend and understand and perceive an issue. Governments and media presented essentially two opposing and contradictory explanations for the Macedonian conflict:

1) Albanian "insurgents" were rebelling against "discrimination" and for "greater rights", "equal rights"; or, 2) Albanian "terrorists" were seeking to create by force and intimidation a Greater Kosovo or Greater Albania. In all, four contradictory explanations of the KLA/NLA "terrorist" war or indigenous "insurgency" emerged: 1) the KLA/NLA terrorists/insurgents were fighting to obtain "greater rights" for the Albanian minority in FYROM; 2) the KLA/NLA sought to enlarge the borders of NATO-run Kosovo, creating a Greater Kosovo; 3) the KLA/NLA sought to expand its drug smuggling, prostitution, and human slave trade operations in FYROM; and, 4) the KLA/NLA seeks to gain "independence" and "freedom" for all Albanian inhabited regions, creating a Greater Albania or Ethnic Albania. How is one to determine which one of the explanations is correct? Why are governments and the media presenting four contradictory explanations? Is this the typical pattern of government/media reporting? By comparison, the ETA (Euskadi ta Azkatasona, Freedom for the Basque Country), the Basque insurgents fighting for greater rights and equal rights in NATO-member Spain who are the majority in the Basque region, are referred to by the Western media as "terrorists" who seek "independence" from Spain. The ETA goals, objectives, and strategies are identical to those of the NLA/KLA/NLAPMB, secession/separatism/independence through terrorist methods, i.e., killing government officials, police, and soldiers of the respective governments concerned, Spain and Macedonia. But the Western governments/media apply a different approach to the ETA than they do to the NLA. The British news network ITN maintained that the ETA "terrorists" were seeking "independence" from Spain. But ITN applies a different nomenclature and terminology to the NLA. What criteria does the media use when it describes one group as insurgents and another as terrorists? "How can we find out if the conflict is one concerning "greater" rights" or one concerning "greater Albania"?

The Federalization/Partition/Autonomy Plan

What is it that the KLA/NLA terrorists/insurgents/rebels demand? The key demand of the KLA/NLA is a change in the constitution of Macedonia to create a federal state, the so-called federalization or federalisation/partition/autonomy plan. In essence, the objective is to partition Macedonia into two separate states, a Slav state, and an Albanian state. This is what all the shooting and shouting is about. This is precisely what the globalist media seeks to conceal. The propaganda/infowar/information technology seeks to camouflage this fact. The KLA/NLA have invaded Macedonia from NATO-run Kosovo and through force and intimidation are demanding the establishment of their own Albanian state. This is why there are four contradictory explanations of the Macedonian conflict, unlike the Basque-Spanish conflict, or Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The media reports on the NLA (National Liberation Army) differently than it does on the ETA (Freedom for the Basque Country) and the PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization). The hidden persuader and hidden manipulator do not want the actual objectives and goals of the Albanian "insurgency" revealed.
What is federalization? Under federalization, the Albanian minority would gain "autonomy" or "self-rule" in Western Macedonia or Illirida or Ilirida, much like they achieved in Kosovo. Illirida or Western Macedonia would become a Kosovo-style Albanian majority federal unit of Macedonia, based on ethnicity, creating an essentially ethnically homogenous and ethnically pure region based on the Kosovo/Kosova model or blueprint, creating a South African-type of apartheid nation divided between Macedonian Orthodox Slavs and ethnic Albanian Muslims. Such a plan is the first step in secession and separatism, again, based on the Kosovo paradigm. The Albanian populated regions would obtain de facto independence and secession based on the Kosovo model.

The federalization plan would result in the disintegration and dismemberment of Macedonia. So much the better for the Greater Albania ideology, which opposes a unified Slav state ruled by untermenschen rayah, ruled by subhuman Slav kaurin and rayah. This was the Albanian/Turkish view of the kaurin Slavs during the Muslim Ottoman Empire. In an April 15 Reuters news report, Macedonian President Rules Out Federal State, Kole Casule quoted Macedonian President Boris Trajkovski as stating that the KLA/NLA demand for federalization "was unacceptable". Trajkovski stated: "The last 10 years have shown that calls for federalisation merely disguise aspirations for an ethnically clean state". Marko Bello, the defense minister of Albania, argued that the NLA/KLA insurgency was motivated by Albanian desires "to enjoy some elementary democratic rights". Reuters explained the NLA/KLA goal as seeking greater language and cultural rights. Casule stated that: iThe rebels say they are fighting for better rights for Macedoniais Albanians.i Casule also quoted the rhetorical, but factually false, assertion that ethnic Albanians are "a third of the population", even though the 1991 official Macedonian census and the 1994 EU "international community" census and the CIA World Factbook census figure is never higher than 22.7%. The Albanian population is less than a quarter of the population of Macedonia. But how does less than a quarter of the total population become "a third of the population" to "more than a third" of the population to i40% of the population"? Isn't the media of the West capable of ascertaining accurate population figures? The hidden manipulator and hidden persuader has left fingerprints? We can adduce a modus operandi or MO. Why isn't the Western media relying on objective data, in short, on facts, such as a census? Why are they maintaining a population figure that has no basis in objective reality or the facts but is based on Greater Albania propaganda and the Greater Albania ideology? What is the historical evolution of the Greater Albania ideology and what are its goals and objectives?

The First League of Prizren, 1878

In 1877, the Central Committee for Defending Albanian Rights made up of Albanian political leaders in Istanbul, proposed a plan for achieving autonomy for Albanian-inhabited areas of the Balkans within the framework of the Ottoman Empire. The autonomy plan of the Committee was published in the Turcoman i Sark newspaper envisioning the creation of a unified Albanian vilayet consisting of the Kosovo vilayet, present-day Kosovo-Metohija, the Janjina vilayet, present-day northern Greece, the Bitolj or Bitola vilayet, present-day FYROM or Macedonia, and the Scutari vilayet, present-day Albania and southern Montenegro. Some Albanians even planned to include the Salonika vilayet, present-day Greece, in the proposed unified Albanian vilayet. From present-day Greece, the Epirus and Yiannitsa regions would be annexed to a Greater Albania. From present-day Macedonia, Tetovo, the "capital city of Greater Albania in Macedonia", Debar, Gostivar, Skopje, where Albanians are a minority, Prilep, Veles, Kumanovo, Bitola, and Ohrid, would be annexed. From present-day Serbia, Prizren, Pec, Djakovica, Gniljane, Novi Pazar, Presevo, Medvedja, Bujanovac, Pec, Kosovska Mitrovica would be annexed. Territory from southern Montenegro would be annexed. In the present-day Greater Albania strategy, the capital city of Montenegro, Podgorica and the outlying area would be annexed, even though Albanians are a minority in the city. This is the origin and genesis of the Greater Albania strategy and ideology that has guided Albanian political aims for over a century.

The Greater Albania Ideology

Ever since the re-formulation and adoption of the Greater Albania ideology and strategy in 1878 by the Albanian League of Prizren, the Albanian strategy to establish a Greater Albania has never waned, evolving and developing for over a hundred years. The 1878 Prizren League was motivated by a primary goal, the establishment of a unified, ethnic Albanian state which would be made up of four Ottoman Turkish vilayets, provinces or administrative districts. These four vilayets were Kosovo, Scutari, Bitolj or Bitola or Monastir, and Janina, Janjevo or Yiannitsa. The population of these four vilayets consisted of the following: 44% were ethnic Albanians, 19.2 % were Macedonian Slavs, 11.4 % were Serbs, 9.2 % were Greeks, 6.5 % were Walachs, 9.3% were Ottoman Turks, and 0.4 % were Armenians, Roma, and Jews. The ethnic Albanians were not a majority in the proposed united Albanian state they sought to establish. Uskub or Uskup, Shkupi in Albanian, present-day Skopje or Skoplje, was included in the united Albanian vilayet although ethnic Albanians were a small minority in the city. The Stara Srbija (Ancient Serbia) region consisting of Rashka, Kosovo-Metohija, and northern Macedonia, was included in the Albanian vilayet although Albanians were a minority in this historically and traditionally Serbian Orthodox region. The Greater Albania strategy and ideology thus inherently involved the aggrandizement of territory not settled by Albanians, the dispossession of foreign land. It was a zero sum strategy that did not allow for compromise. The policy was aimed principally at the Slavic populations of the southern Balkan Peninsula, the Serbian Orthodox populations and the Macedonian Slav populations. The policy was inherently anti-Orthodox, anti-Slavic, anti-Serbian, and anti-Macedonian. Inevitably and inherently, ethnic and political conflict with the Serbian Orthodox and Macedonian Orthodox populations resulted.

The Albanian leaders devised the Greater Albania strategy in response or reaction to the turmoil following the Bosnian Insurrection of 1875 by the Serbian Orthodox population of Hercegovina, a revolt against economic exploitation, political repression, and human rights violations by the Islamic Ottoman rulers. In 1875, the Serbian population of Hercegovina faced famine conditions. Serbia and Montenegro supported the Bosnian Insurrection by declaring war against Turkey. In 1877, Russia entered the conflict by declaring war against Turkey. In the 1877-78 Russo-Turkish War, Turkey was defeated. The Treaty of San Stefano and the Treaty of Berlin would establish independence for Serbia and Bulgaria. The Albanians had fought on the losing side, the Muslim Ottoman Empire. They feared that the Slavic Orthodox Christian states would benefit from the border changes while Albanian interests would suffer. Many of the Albanian delegates to the Prizren League were wealthy Albanian beys or begs and agas, who owned large land tracts. Moreover, because Albanians were allied with the Muslim Turks and had converted to Islam, Albanians held privileged positions. The Orthodox Slavs, on the other hand, were "treated like a herd of cattle", were second-class citizens, were subhuman rayah, the kaurin, the infidel, non-Muslim rayah.

Under Turkish rule, the Albanians were able to drive out and expel large Serbian Orthodox populations and to settle their lands. Albanian settlers and colonists had settled Serbia proper, settling Serbian towns such as Toplica, Vranje, Leskovac, and Pomoravlje, the Nis sandzak. Following the defeat of the Turkish forces, the Turkish army and the Albanian troops and irregulars within it, the bashibazouks, had to retreat. Approximately 30,000 ethnic Albanian settlers in these Serbian cities were forced to flee with the Turkish army. The Albanian refugees, muhadjirs, settled in Kosovo-Metohija, retaliating against the Serbian Orthodox population of Kosovo, seizing their property. The Albanian leaders thus sought to preserve their status and privileges attained in the Ottoman Empire. They were reactionary, anti-democratic, anti-pluralist, and opposed a multi-ethnic state. With the defeat of the Ottoman troops, Albanians feared that their status, privileges, and land would be lost, all that they had achieved under Turkish occupation, such as the expulsions of indigenous Orthodox populations, the colonization and settlement of Orthodox lands, the acquisition of vast property holdings, and a privileged political, social, and economic status in the Ottoman Empire could not be preserved. They saw the struggle as inherently an ethnic struggle with the Slavic populations, as a zero sum game. This is the historical backdrop for the emergence of the Greater Albania strategy.

The Greater Albania strategy requires an outside foreign power to sponsor or intervene to support the movement because the Albanian population is a minority in the Greater Albania territory, which would entail a war to achieve. The Albanian leaders of the Prizren League relied on Turkey to achieve their strategy. But Turkey was not able to achieve Greater Albania. The Albanians demanded complete autonomy from Turkey and seized the Kosovo towns of Pec, Kosovska Mitrovica, Prizren, and Djakovica. The Albanians refused to pay taxes and opposed recruitment into the Turkish armed forces. The Turkish leaders were forced to re-occupy these regions. The Turks arrested the political leaders of the League of Prizren and deported them. The League of Prizren was thus destroyed by the Turkish government. But many of the primary premises and objectives of the Greater Albania ideology survived. Ethnic homogeneity or the creation of ethnically pure Albanian areas was always a primary tenet and strategy of the Greater Albania strategy. The goal was to create a unified, ethnic Albanian state, so-called Ethnic Albania. By its very definition, Ethnic Albania was an Albanian populated state. There were no guidelines for the creation of a multi-ethnic or pluralistic state. The basis for the establishment of a unified Greater Albania was ethnicity. This entailed waging an ethnic conflict or war against the non-Albanian populations. The Serbian Orthodox and Macedonian Orthodox populations of the Kosovo and Bitola vilayets were targeted for attack and elimination and displacement.

The Prizren League formulated an anti-Slavic, anti-Orthodox platform that targeted the Serbian and Macedonian and Greek populations. A French diplomat reported that 112 Orthodox Serbs were killed by Albanians in June, 1878 and Serbian houses were burned. Nine Serbian women from Gnilanje were kidnapped and subsequently tortured. In Pec, the Serbian population alleged that over 100 Serbs were murdered. The Russian Consul reported that three Albanians raped a thirteen-year old girl from Dobrotin. He wrote that the ithe Serbs dare not complain to the authorities." He quoted an Albanian leader who informed him: "We will attack the Montenegrins on Christmas and kill them. And if we fail---we will return to Pec and the vicinity and burn and saber all the Christians." With the emergence of the Greater Albania doctrine following the Prizren League, a planned, organized, and systematic policy and program resulted that targeted the Serbian Orthodox, the Macedonian Orthodox, and the Greek Orthodox populations. From 1876 to 1912, over 150,000 Serbian Orthodox refugees fled the Kosovo vilayet, driven out by Albanians seeking to create an ethnic Albanian region and to thereby establish Albanian control over the area. The Serbian Orthodox and Macedonian Orthodox populations were perceived under the Greater Albania ideology as "the enemy", as "them", as an alien population that threatened the existence of the Albanian population. A consensual paranoia resulted that led to an ethnic polarization, a dichotomy between Orthodox Serbians and Orthodox Macedonians and Albanians, in its extreme form, a dichotomy between Albanians and all non-Albanians, a dichotomy between "us" and "them", the psychological basis for ethnic enmity and conflict. Throughout the twentieth century, the Greater Albania strategy was guided by this ethnic polarization of the conflict, by a perception of the conflict as one between different ethnic groups, i.e., the conflict is defined only as an ethnic conflict. This is why political, social, economic, and even religious factors do not play a fundamental role in the Greater Albania doctrine. What unites Greater Albania nationalists is a focus on ethnic conflict, on ethnic polarization. In other words, ethnicity defines the Greater Albania strategy. This explains why the Greater Albania strategy has endured and thrived whether under Islamic (Turkey) or Roman Catholic (Austria-Hungary) sponsorship, under fascism (Italy) or Nazism (Germany) or Communism (Yugoslavia) or capitalism (US, NATO, EU), the Greater Albania strategy has remained constant and unchanging for over a hundred years, thriving and evolving.

Kosova, Illirida, Chameria, and Presheva: Greater Albania

The Kosovo and Metohija regions of the Kosovo vilayet, termed Kosova in the Greater Albania lexicon, were a primary focus of the Greater Albania strategy. Many of the Albanian delegates to the Prizren League were from Kosovo and present-day Macedonia, or Illirida. Albania proper, the Scutari vilayet, was secure. The Albanian populations of the Janina vilayet in northern Greece, Chameria in the Greater Albania strategy, were too small. The Kosovo vilayet had a large enough population of Albanians, achieved through settlement and expulsion and displacement of the indigenous Serbian Orthodox populations, to warrant primary focus of the Prizren League. Western Macedonia, Illirida in the Greater Albania nomenclature, had a large Albanian population as well. Tetova or Tetovo was the main city in Illirida, the major Albanian-inhabited urban center of the Greater Albania movement in Macedonia. Because of population size, Kosova and Illirida became the focal points of the Greater Albania movement.

Macedonian Insurgency: Albanian Rebels Capture Skopje, 1912

In 1909, the Albanian population of Kosovo-Metohija revolted against increased taxation, disarmament, and a proposed census, following an Albanian congress in Debar, in present-day Macedonia, where the demands of a Greater Albania were re-iterated seeking an autonomous area made of all Albanian-inhabited regions. The Turks sent an armed force led by Djavid Pasha to suppress the insurgency. The Turkish Army suppressed the insurgents but another insurgency erupted in 1910. In 1911, the Albanians launched yet another insurgency. In August, 1912, the Albanian insurgents, composed of 15,000 guerrillas, led by Hasan Prishtina and Ismail Kemal, captured Skopje. The Albanian leaders, made up of a disparate group that included Bairam Cur, Isa Boljetinac, Riza Bey Krieziu, and Nexhib Draga, then presented their political demands to the Ottoman Turks. They demanded autonomy for the Albanian regions and cession of the Kosovo vilayet, present-day Kosovo-Metohija, and the Bitola vilayet, present-day Macedonia, into a unified, Albanian state, a Greater Albania. The principal negotiators with the Turkish government, Hasan Prishtina and Nexhib Draga, sought to resolve the conflict within the framework of the Ottoman Empire. The Turks, however, opposed an autonomous Albanian vilayet.

The Kachak Terrorist/Guerrilla Movement: Precursor of KLA/NLA/LAPMB

Following World War I, Kosovo-Metohija and present-day Macedonia (FYROM) were incorporated into Serbia, which after 1918 became part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes. The name of the country was changed to Yugoslavia in 1929. The ethnic Albanian population of Kosovo-Metohija resisted this incorporation and sought union or annexation of Kosmet with Albania, creating a Greater Albania or Ethnic Albania. Armed resistance to Serbian rule resulted in the Kachak Movement ( from the Turkish kachmak, meaning ito runawayi or ito hidei). The Kachmak terrorists/guerrillas and insurgents, under the command of Mustafa Kroja and Hasan Prishtina, are the precursors, antecedents, and models for the so-called Kosovo Liberation Army, KLA, or UCK (Ushtria Clirimtare E Kosoves, in Albanian), the National Liberation Army, NLA, and the now defunct Liberation Army of Presevo, Medvedja, and Bujanovac, LAPMB. The Kachak Movement was coordinated by the Albanian kosovo.netmittee led by Bajram Curi and aided by Italy whose key objective was ito persuade the international community to agree to Kosovo being annexed to Albania.i Albanian and Italian propaganda termed the Kachak guerrilla movement a inational-liberationi movement. The Serbian regime termed the Greater Albania movement one conducted by outlaws and bandits, what would be termed iterroristsi in the contemporary political lexicon. Italy was supporting the Greater Albania Movement to gain control of Albania, which it saw as a puppet and colony state. The Greater Albania ideology would give Italy entree as a colonial/imperial power in the Balkans. The Kachack guerrillas attacked and murdered government officials, police, and Serbian Orthodox civilians. The modus operandi (MO) of the Kachak insurgents of the 1920s would be identical to that of the KLA/NLA/LAPMB insurgents of the 1998-2001 period. The fascist regime of Benito Mussolini directly sponsored the Greater Albania Kachak Movement, supporting their terrorist activities and donating 200,000 lira to Kroja and Prishtina, the leaders of the movement.

The Second League of Prizren, 1943

In 1941, Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini created a Greater Albania, consisting of Kosova, Kosovo-Metohija, Illirida, Western Macedonia, and territory from Montenegro. What the KLA/NLA/LAPMB seek is the re-establishment of the Greater Albanian state created by Hitler and Mussolini from 1941 to 1945.

Following the surrender of Italy in 1943, Germany re-occupied Kosovo-Metohija and sponsored Albanian nationalist and extremist groups and recruited ethnic Albanians into German units and formations. Dzafer Deva, a member of the Balli Kombetar (BK, or National Union), an Albanian nationalist organization which sought to create an ethnically pure Greater Albania, organized the Second League of Prizren on September 16, 1943, "in cooperation with the German occupation authorities". The Second League of Prizren intensified its systematic efforts to ethnically cleanse Kosovo of Orthodox Serbs and Jews and other non-Albanians. Over 10,000 Kosovo Serbian Orthodox families were driven out or ethnically cleansed from Kosovo.

The Second League of Prizren and the Balli Kombetar were decisive in the creation of the 21st Waffen Gebrigs Division der SS iSkanderbegi, the Skanderbeg SS Division, which focused on the extermination of the Serbian Orthodox and Jewish populations of Kosovo and present-day Macedonia. A key base of the Skanderbeg Division was Tetova or Tetovo. The Skanderbeg Division operated within the territory of Greater Albania, which included Kosovo-Metohija, the Preshevo-Medvedja-Bujanovac area of Southern Serbia, Western Macedonia or Illirida, around the Tetovo-Gostivar-Skopje area. Before the German occupation of Macedonia, the Italian Army occupied the region with its base in Tetovo, where the Italians formed the Albanian Ljuboten fascist formation.

The German Army and the Waffen SS sought to recruit Albanian troops into the German armed forces. Heinrich Himmler, the leader of the SS, along with Hitler and Mussolini, became an ardent advocate and sponsor of Greater Albania. Himmler envisioned the formation of two Waffen SS Divisions made up of ethnic Albanians, primarily from the Kosovo and Macedonia regions. Himmler justified his advocacy of the Greater Albania cause by anthropological research which the Italians had conducted which they argued proved that the Ghegs of northern Albania were ethnically pure Aryans, members of the master race. Himmler thus wanted to incorporate the ethnically pure Aryan Albanians into the elite Waffen SS. The war ended before Himmler could form the second Albanian SS Division.

Himmler approved the formation of the Skanderbeg Waffen SS Division on April 17, 1944. Approximately 200-300 Albanian troops in the Bosnian Muslim 13th Waffen Gebrigs Division iHandzari or (iHandschari in German) were transferred to the newly forming Skanderbeg Division, which would consist of 6, 491 ethnic Albanians, two-thirds of whom were from Kosovo-Metohija. The recruits were mostly Sunni and Bektashi Muslims. German troops and NCOs were added from Austria and Germany proper to this Albanian core, making the total troop strength of the Division 8,500 to 9,000 men, a full-strength division.

The Second League of Prizren, the Balli Kombetar, and the Skanderbeg SS Division were anti-Slav, anti-Macedonian, anti-Serbian, anti-Jewish, anti-Orthodox. The Albanian nationalist groups targeted these groups for extermination and ethnic cleansing. The Skanderbeg Division occupied Western Macedonia which was part of Hitleris Greater Albania. From 1941 to 1945, Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler created a Greater Albania which included Western Macedonia.

1991 Macedonian Constitution

On September 17, 1991, the Republic of Macedonia voted for independence from Yugoslavia and seceded. A Constitution was adopted on November 17, 199. Macedonia became an independent, sovereign state, the national state of the ethnic Macedonians. In the Constitution, it is stated as follows:YYiMacedonia is established as a national state of the Macedonian people.iYThis status was based on ithe historical facti that Macedonian Slavs were the majority population who had created a national state, a iMacedonia for the Macedonians, a national goal from the emergence of the Krushevo Republic in 1903 to the Republic of Macedonia in Yugoslavia from 1945 to 1991.YYThe Constitution guaranteed equality for all the national minorities in the FYROM: "Full equality as citizens" is provided for Albanians, Turks, Vlachs, and Roma, and other nationalities.i The Constitution guarantees human rights, "citizens freedoms" and ethnic equality. The Constitution also established "the rule of law" as "a fundamental system of government"". Social and economic equality were guaranteed with "the provision of social justice, economic well-being and prosperity in the life of the individual and the community". Under Article 9 in Basic Freedoms and Rights, the equality of all Macedonian citizens is guaranteed: "All citizens are equal before the Constitution and law". Article 10 prohibits the death penalty, reflecting the trend against capital punishment, regarded by jurists as a barbaric anachronism with no proven deterrent impact/effect. In this regard, the Macedonian Constitution is more protective of human rights than the US Constitution, which allows capital punishment. The US and China execute the most prisoners each year. The Macedonian Constitution guarantees equal access to education and health care. Equality is thus guaranteed for the national minorities.

But why do the NLA/KLA terrorists/insurgents want to change the Constitution by force and intimidation when democratic processes, procedures, and mechanisms are available? Is the murder and mutilation of Macedonian soldiers and police the only way to change the Constitution of the FYROM of Macedonia? Is the invasion and occupation of the territory of Macedonia by an armed rebel group the only mechanism by which to make changes in the Constitution? Is this the legitimate and accepted method and mechanism by which changes in constitutions are made? Is this how changes in the US Constitution occur?

The Macedonian Constitution itself provides a procedure for changing the Constitution under Article 130 in Section VIII, Changes in the Constitution. The President of the Republic, the Government itself, a minimum of 30 Representatives of the Macedonian Assembly, or 150,000 Macedonian citizens can make a proposal to initiate a change in the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia. A two-thirds majority vote by the Assembly of Representatives can initiate a change in the Constitution while a two-thirds vote by the Assembly can change the Constitution. Thus, democratic, peaceful procedures exist and are explicitly outlined in the Macedonian Constitution itself? Why doesn't the Western media reveal this? Why does the Western media repeat ad nauseam in every news report on Macedonia that the KLA/NLA terrorists/insurgents are fighting for "greater rights" when the Albanian minority can follow legal, democratic procedures to obtain "greater rights" in the Constitution? Why the infowar and propaganda embed in every news report? Is it to manipulate? Is it to cover up the fact that the Albanian minority can change the Constitution by democratic and peaceful means? Is it to cover-up the fact that the massacre and mutilation of innocent Macedonian police and soldiers is not necessary? Are NATO governments/media covering up the fact that legal procedures exist for obtaining "greater rights"? Albanian propaganda "claims that ethnic Albanians are 40% of the population. But then why doesn't this large population seek to change the constitution through its elected Representatives? At least 30 Representatives is all that is required to make a proposal to change the Constitution. Why can't 150,000 ethnic Albanian citizens of FYROM of Macedonia petition for a change in the Constitution, as they are legally allowed to do? Why do they instead lobby US political leaders and former leaders such as Joseph Dioguardi and Joseph Biden and Robert Dole? Why don't they lobby their own elected political Representatives in Macedonia? Moreover, why didn't the ethnic Albanian population do this in Kosovo? Obviously the Albanians have no interest in democracy and in democratic procedures. That is why there is a need for a so-called insurgency. That is why we have a propaganda campaign and an infowar. That is why we have infowar embeds and planting. The picture becomes all too clear.

Census Data for Macedonia

The propaganda/information technology embed in every so-called Western news report mentions that "ethnic Albanians" make up "a third of the population" of the FYROM or in some reports, "over a third of the population". This media embed mirrors the Albanian propaganda line of the Albanian lobby in the US and their sponsors/backers. The National Albanian American Council (NAAC) "claims" that Albanians make up from i33 to 40%i of the population in Macedonia. But this claim is based on propaganda, not on any factual data or census results. In 1991, the Macedonian Government conducted an official nation-wide census. The Albanian minority boycotted the census. They did this based on the Kosovo/Kosova model or blueprint. In Kosovo, Albanian separatists had boycotted elections, the census, universities, Yugoslav political institutions. Albanian secessionists, instead, created parallel institutions. These separatist procedures created de facto "independence" and de facto secession/partition. Similarly, in Macedonia, boycotting the census created de facto "independence" and de facto partition of the populations. An accurate census would be deleterious to Albanian separatist propaganda. How can they then claim that they are 40% of the population?

The 1991 Macedonian Census found that there was a total Macedonian population of 2,033,964. Macedonians were 67% of the total population, or 1,328,187. Albanians were 21.7% of the population, or 441,987. The Serbian Orthodox population was 2.1%, or 42,775. In 1994, due to Albanian pressure, the EU conducted a second census under the auspices of the "international" communityi. The EU Census as demanded by the Albanians yielded essentially the same results. The EU Census determined that the total Macedonian population was 1,936,877. Macedonians were found to make up 66.5% of the total population, or 1,288,330. Albanians were 22.9% of the population, or 442,914. The Serbian Orthodox population was 2.0%, or 39,260. The CIA World Factbook for Macedonia presents population statistics for FYROM based on July, 2000 CIA estimates. The CIA determined a total Macedonian population of 2,041,467. The CIA relied on the 1994 EU international community census for the following figures for ethnic groups: Macedonians make up 66.6%, Albanians make up 22.7%, and the Orthodox Serbian population makes up 2.1% of the total population. The CIA reports a population growth rate for Macedonia of 0.04%. With the given growth rate for population, these population figures and proportions have not changed much in the last 10 years but in fact are static. But then where does the media derive its population figures that Albanians make up "a third of the population" of the FYROM? The most the Albanians make up is 22.7%? A third is 33 and 1/3%. How does the media account for the 10% increase in population? Where did all these Albanians come from? Does our media know more than our intelligence agency, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)? Why doesn't the media obtain its population figures from census data and from the CIA information? Why does our "free" and "independent" media rely on propaganda embeds in every news report? Is it that difficult to check population statistics? The CIA Factbook also determined that the Macedonian language is spoken by 70% of the population, Albanian by 21%, and Serbian by 3%. The CIA referred to Macedonia as an "emerging democracy" with a 35% unemployment rate based on 1999 estimates by the CIA. FYROM received $10.5 million in economic aid from Taiwan and the EU gave $100 million to FYROM to be split with Albania. Under Illicit Drugs, the CIA noted that the FYROM is an "increasing transshipment point for Southwest Asian heroin and hashish." The CIA noted that "Albanians claim discrimination in education, access to public-sector jobs, and representation in government". The CIA World Factbook for Macedonia found sources of instability as follows: FYROM is large Albanian minority and the de facto independence of neighboring Kosovo continue to be sources of ethnic tension." The NATO occupation of Kosovo then has resulted in instability in Macedonia, according to the CIA. NATO rationalized and sanctioned the illegal bombing of Yugoslavia and the NATO occupation of Kosovo on the premise that stability and peace would result in the Balkans. The CIA, however, concluded that the opposite has resulted, instability and the potential for conflict. The CIA, moreover, continues to refer to Yugoslavia as "Serbia and Montenegro" and the CIA media/propaganda/information outlet, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) refers to Kosovo as "Kosova" (the Albanian form of the Serbian word). If Kosovo has de facto independence, based on the CIA assertion, that would violate United Nations Resolutions that set guidelines for the NATO military occupation. The CIA makes the following comment: "Note: Democratic Party for Albanians (DPA), which is now a member of the government, is calling for a rewrite of the constitution to declare ethnic Albanians a national group and allow for regional autonomy." In other words, the DPA demands the federalization plan, the plan of partition and the dismemberment and dismantling of the Macedonian state. The CIA knows what the NLA "insurgency" is all about. The CIA doesn't need four contradictory explanations in the media and embeds and planting.

What are the NLA demands in Macedonia? What do they want? What does the Albanian lobby in the US demand? The National American Albanian Council stated that ithe fundamental problem in Macedonia is the view thereOthat Macedonia is a state of Slavic Macedonians. What does this mean? Again, it is the federalization plan, the partition plan. In practical terms, it means de facto secession and independence but disguised through information technology. Conceptually, it is a reductio ad absurdum. Most importantly and glaringly, it is a sanctioning of ethnic secession and partition, the very thing that was so vehemently opposed by the "international community" in Bosnia and in Krajina. The NAAC, the DPA, and the NLA/KLA/NLAPMB are in agreement that Macedonia should be dismembered and partitioned between the Slavs and the Albanians. This is in a nutshell all that one needs to know about the Macedonian conflict. This is what the infowar and media propaganda by AP, Reuters, CNN, BBC, ITN, NPR, ABC, CBS, NBC, CBC, ITN, is meant to conceal and camouflage. The NAAC claimed that there was "systematic", "institutionalized discrimination" in Macedonia against ethnic Albanians. But the Macedonian Constitution establishes equality for all citizens and a democratic, legal process and procedures for redress of grievances and changes in the Constitution. The NAAC maintained that Albanians make up 33-40% of the population, while ethnic Macedonians make up "only slightly over 50 per cent" of the population. There is no factual or objective basis for these fabrications and falsifications. Is it that difficult to obtain accurate census data? The NAAC maintained that there were "bad roads, poor healthy" facilities in Albanian areas. But why don't they address these issues through the legal and democratic procedures established in the FYROM Constitution? Why don't they interact with their political representatives in Macedonia, not political leaders and lobbies in the US, Germany, Switzerland and Albania? Will invading a sovereign nation and butchering and mutilating its police and soldiers and occupying its towns and villages bring about a redress of political grievances? Is that the accepted procedure? The NAAC demands that Albanian be an official language of Macedonia and that Albanians become "equal citizens"? Again, under the Constitution, language rights are protected and guaranteed. What the NAAC demands is in fact federalization, partition. When the rhetoric and propaganda is deconstructed and analyzed, the Albanian demands amount to the establishment of the federalization plan, or ethnic partition of the FYROM of Macedonia into a Slav and Albanian component. The modus operandi or MO is identical to that employed during the Kosovo conflict or "insurgency".

NATO Intervention in Macedonia?

The reason why the NLA, and earlier the KLA/NLAPMB, opposes a democratic and peaceful change of the FYROM Constitution through legal and constitutional procedures and processes is because the agenda of Albanian "insurgency" in Macedonia is separatism or partition, not "greater rights" or "equal rights" as maintained in the propaganda embeds of Western media. Separatism and partition will result in the destruction and dismemberment of the Macedonian state. The only way the NLA can achieve separatism/partition in the FYROM is by applying the Kosovo paradigm or blueprint, the Rambouillet scenario, the international "mediation" plan of resolution of the conflict. What is the Kosovo paradigm? Cause a civil war with NATO collusion and assistance and then have NATO reluctantly intervene militarily to re-establish stability/peace. NATO intervention has been the goal of the NLA/KLA/NLAPMB terrorist insurgency since the start of the
terrorist/secessionist/separatist war by Albanian insurgents/terrorists in 1998 in Kosovo. The strategy all along was very simple: Induce NATO to intervene to prevent a humanitarian disaster/catastrophe, to prevent genocide/ethnic cleansing, to bring peace/stability to the Balkans. Military intervention benefited the expansionist agendas of both NATO/US and Albanian separatists/secessionists. This was the goal of the Islamic ultra-nationalist regime of Islamist Alija Izetbegovic in Bosnia during the civil war. The only way the Bosnian regime, and its NATO/US sponsors, could induce military intervention was to mischaracterize the three-way civil war, where each side was protecting its own national interests, through media disinformation and propaganda as a humanitarian crisis. Once the US government gave the green light, the media went into a feeding frenzy, presenting manufactured and bogus images of refugees, concentration/death camps, massacres, ethnic cleansing, and genocide. Boutros Boutros Ghali, UN Secretary General, dismissed Bosnia as a "rich man's war" and noted that there were at least a dozen places in the world where the loss of life and suffering were greater than in Bosnia. But NATO/US and the globalist "humanitarians" and interventionists did not want to establish an "open society" in Rwanda or Sudan or the occupied West Bank or Gaza Strip. NATO military intervention, the new military humanism, and humanitarianism is selective, based on geo-political, economic, and military self-interest and expansionism. The same modus operandi or MO was at play in Macedonia. The NLA and the Western and US media seek to induce NATO military intervention against the Macedonian "Slavs" by portraying the conflict through media propaganda, through the media of "the free world", as a humanitarian crisis, a conflict about human rights, minority rights, and ethnic minority grievances. But the fact remains: NATO intervention is the ultimate objective and goal. This is the real agenda of Albanian "insurgency" in Macedonia. This is all they want and demand. NATO occupation of the FYROM of Macedonia to "disarm" the NLA terrorists/insurgents and to grant them amnesty will result in the de facto partition and de facto independence of Western Macedonia, Illirida in the Greater Albania ideology. NATO intervention will result in a Kosovo-style NLA takeover of Western Macedonia, establishing de facto independence. De jure independence is a formality that is superfluous like in Kosovo. The NLA wants de facto partition based on the Kosovo model. NATO intervention will accomplish this objective. The NLA cannot win any military engagement in the FYROM. Like in Kosovo, the Yugoslav police and military forces wiped out the KLA. In Bosnia, the NATO/US-supported Bosnian Muslim Army was wiped out. The NLA can wreak havoc and cause many needless deaths and much suffering, but if the FYROM mobilizes and declares war, actions opposed by NATO, the NLA too will be wiped out in time. So the NLA strategy is very simple: Cause as much havoc and carnage in Macedonia, create as much of a humanitarian disaster/catastrophe, cause a refugee crisis, so that the "international community", i.e., NATO, will intervene. NATO "reluctance" to intervene is a sham. NATO mouthpiece and front, "Mr.. Massacre", William Walker, who induced NATO intervention in Kosovo based on a manufactured "massacre", propaganda of the deed, has demanded that NATO intervene in the FYROM on the side of the NLA terrorists/insurgents. Another NATO front organization, the globalist Human Rights Watch (HRW), has begun cataloguing alleged human rights abuses of the Macedonian government. Jacques Chirac and globalist humanitarian and interventionist groups and organizations have demanded NATO intervention. This prepapres the propaganda groundwork for NATO intervention. NATO has already decided to send a 3,000 troop contingent to the FYROM and to idisarmi the terrorists/insurgents of the NLA but only following a "peace agreement" based on the Rambouillet diktat model. In fact, NATO has already intervened in the FYROM by arming, training, and supplying the NLA directly and indirectly through MPRI, the CIA, and SAS, which is training both the NLA and Macedonian government troops, by not interdicting NLA incursions and infiltrations into the FYROM from NATO-run Kosovo at the border which NATO controls, patrolled by US, German, and British troops, by allowing KLA/KPC ireservistsi to infiltrate the FYROM from bases in Kosovo and training bases in northern Albania to reinforce the inewi KLA fighting in Macedonia. Once NATO intervenes and occupies Macedonia, the NLA will have won and will have achieved its objectives and goals, de facto partition and de facto independence/secession. End of insurgency. End of conflict. This was the scenario in Kosovo. We are seeing a repeat performance in Macedonia. The results will be the same.


Conclusion

Albanian terrorists/insurgents and guerrillas since the 1878 League of Prizren have sought to create a Greater Albania, an unchanging aim of Albanian nationalism. The First Balkan War of 1912 would lead to the emergence of an Albanian state for the first time in history. There had never been an Albanian state before 1912. The new Albanian state would consist principally of the Scutari vilayet. Illirida, western Macedonia, and Kosova, Kosovo-Metohija, would not be included in the new Albanian state. Throughout the twentieth century, Albanian nationalism and Albanian political aims in the Balkans would be guided by the Greater Albania ideology and strategy formulated by the 1878 League of Prizren, which were re-formulated by the 1943 League of Prizren.

The objective and goal of the Albanian "Insurgency" or terrorist war in Macedonia is to implement the federalization plan, the partition of Macedonia into Albanian and Slav federal units. The federalization plan demanded by the NLA would result in de facto independence/secession/partition of Macedonia. The federalization plan is modeled on the Kosovo paradigm or blueprint. NATO military intervention and occupation of Macedonia are integral parts of the NLA strategy. NATO intervention is required to establish de facto partition and federalization. The model is Kosovo. With NATO intervention, the NLA which achieve its objective to establish not "greater rights", but a Greater Albania, the goal and objective of the Albanian nationalist agenda for over a century.

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GREATER ALBANIA?

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The New York Review of Books
May 17, 2001
original text at NYREW Site



By Tim Judah


It was a perfect spring day this March when they laid to rest the young ethnic Albanian guerrilla Daut Sulejmani. It was warm, the breeze rippled across the rolling hills of the Presevo Valley, and soldiers from the US Army watched from the brow of the hill, less than a mile away. Behind a row of the ashen-faced women of Daut's family stood two hundred armed Albanian guerrillas. A guard of honor fired above the open grave and angry orators lauded Daut's martyrdom at the hand of "barbarian Slavs."

Daut was sixteen. He was buried in his home village of Dobrosin, which lies just over the border from Kosovo, inside Serbia proper. The funeral took place on March 24, two years to the day after NATO began its punishing bombardment of Yugoslavia in response to the mistreatment of Albanians in Kosovo by Milosevic's forces. Seventy-eight days later Serbian soldiers, police, and civilians began their historic retreat from the province. It was the final nail in the coffin of the nationalist dream of Greater Serbia.

Why, two years later, was I attending Daut's military funeral? If I was to believe everything I read in the European and American newspapers, the reason was simple. The West had created a monster. Yes, we had severed the head of Greater Serbia only to discover that Balkan nationalism is hydra-headed. In its place we now stood confronted by the evil specter of rabid, expansionist Albanian nationalism, which aimed to create either a Greater Albania or at least a Greater Kosovo.

But something jarred. It was like the story of Daut's death. No one seemed clear about how he had died. There was talk of a Serbian sniper who had shot Daut in violation of a cease-fire. A day or two later another story began to emerge. Daut had not died at the hands of a Serb. He had shot himself in an accident. Tragic, but not quite so glorious. As always, things are never quite so simple in the Balkans. And so it is with the story of "Greater Albania."

Albanians complain that history is not fair. Following the Balkan Wars of 1912 and 1913 an Albanian state emerged, more or less within its current borders. The problem was that these borders left considerable territory with large Albanian populations, such as Kosovo, outside the new state. Some were left in northern Greece, the rest in the lands which were to become part of Yugoslavia in 1918. In 1941 Fascist Italy created the first and only Greater Albania, which included most of Kosovo and the Albanian-inhabited regions of western Macedonia. After World War II the old Yugoslav borders were restored. The Albanians of Albania were sealed in behind the frontiers of a Stalinist state while Albanians in Yugoslavia were treated with suspicion by the Communist authorities. Still, by the mid-1970s most of them lived in the increasingly autonomous and self-confident southern Serbian province of Kosovo. Largely run by Albanians until Milosevic imposed direct Serbian control over it after 1989, Kosovo was a natural magnet for Albanians from other parts of Yugoslavia. When Yugoslavia eventually collapsed, families suddenly found themselves divided by new borders, especially the one that now existed between Kosovo and Macedonia.

As rampant nationalism took hold throughout former Yugoslavia, it is no wonder that some began to talk of a Greater Albania. The surprising thing though was just how few they were. Virtually all Albanians talked of Kosovo's eventual independence but few were interested in any formal connection with Albania—which, until 445,000 of them were forced to flee there during NATO's bombing of Yugoslavia, they did not even know much about.

1.
In March, with Jean-Baptiste Naudet, a friend who works for the magazine Le Nouvel Observateur, I climbed a towering hill of rubbish in the western Macedonian town of Tetovo, most of whose citizens are ethnic Albanians. The Kosovo border is only ten miles away, but still twelve hours' walk across the mountains. The Macedonian security forces lounged behind their armored personnel carriers in the streets and said we could not drive through their last checkpoint. That meant we could not drive up into the hills behind the town to find the guerrillas of the National Liberation Army (NLA), which says it is fighting for Albanian rights in Macedonia.

We asked local Albanians the way and they pointed upward. We got lost, and had to make our way over the piled-up garbage and walk for several hours in order to get behind the Macedonian lines to see the NLA. When we arrived in the village of Sipkovica we could see across a valley the guerrilla stronghold at Selce. We clambered down the hill and crossed the river on the valley floor, only to be sent back by the guerrillas we encountered below Selce. They were abrupt and tense. A twenty-four-hour Macedonian cease-fire was to run out that night and they were in no mood to talk to journalists.

Back in Sipkovica, men stood in the streets in anxious knots, whispering and worrying. We met the mayor, Zulqufli Ajvazi, who explained that he was arranging for people to sleep in cellars. At this point a black-clad NLA man angrily took him aside. Our interview was over. Mr. Ajvazi stared at his feet. "I'm sorry, we are not allowed to give any more information," said the mayor's translator, who normally works as a concierge at the Marriott Hotel at Heathrow Airport. He had just come back because he was worried about his daughter.

Since the NLA had appeared in the hills above Tetovo there had been no electricity in the villages. That night, by candlelight, people talked a little more easily, since the NLA men were not around. "To hell with both of them!" said one man, meaning both the NLA and the Macedonian security forces. "All I want is a decent job, and money in my pocket," said another. "Two weeks ago, the Macedonian police came hunting for arms," said one man, "especially in the houses of those who fought in Kosovo." But, he went on, "they beat people up, and ripped gold from the necks of our women. We're Muslims. They can't touch our women."

None of the Albanian Macedonians I spoke to in Sipkovica seemed much interested in "Greater Albania." One man said: "I went to Albania once. Awful! They are all thieves! Kosovars? Just as bad! Of course, we Albanians from Macedonia have a far higher level of culture than all other Albanians." The next day, Jean-Baptiste and I tried to go to Selce again. A commander on a donkey told us to go away. We headed back down the valley toward Tetevo and, as we did so, the Macedonian cease-fire ended. Every few minutes a Macedonian shell hit the side of the steep hill above Tetovo where there is an ancient castle, from which the NLA was not firing back. But we were walking right into the Macedonian firing range. We turned away and climbed for a couple of hours. When we got to the top of a hill we watched the desultory shelling and listened to the BBC on the radio. Apparently this was an "intense artillery bombardment." What, we wondered, was a light one?

Something odd was happening up here in the hills. The more we talked to the villagers the more it was clear that they were ambivalent in their support for the NLA. Unlike the early months of the Kosovo war there was no euphoria, but there was fear of both the Macedonians and the NLA. Meanwhile, the Macedonians were announcing a "final offensive" and the NLA was not fighting back. Why was this? Was it because they would kill Albanians in the city below if they did or was it because they did not have much to fire with? A few days later the Macedonians climbed the hills and the NLA ran away. Hardly anyone had died during the fighting. There were no massacres, no ethnic cleansing, and no mass graves. The Macedonians did not fall into the trap that the Serbs fell into in Kosovo; they have not burned villages and driven people into the arms of the guerrillas. They may yet do so, but for the moment this has not happened.

2.
Some 1.95 million people live in Macedonia, which declared its independence from the old Yugoslavia in 1991. According to the 1994 census 22.7 percent of the population are ethnic Albanians, and they live mainly in the western part of the country and in Skopje, the capital. The census also recorded that 66.6 percent of the population were Macedonian Slavs. They are mostly Orthodox Christians, like the Serbs, while the Albanians are mostly Muslim.*

The Albanians claim that the census is incorrect and that they really make up 40 percent of the population. Foreign observers tend to put the figure at about one third. A new census was to have begun on April 1, but this has had to be postponed. Much of the quarrel between the two sides centers on the Albanians' claim that the Macedonian constitution and its laws discriminate against them. For example, if you are an ethnic Slav Macedonian and live in Australia, you can become a citizen of Macedonia. But, the Albanians claim, at least 100,000 Albanians live in Macedonia yet don't qualify for citizenship because they come from Kosovo or other parts of the former Yugoslavia. Only 3 percent of police are ethnic Albanians, and ministries and state institutions employ similarly small numbers of ethnic Albanians.

In January 1992 ethnic Albanian politicians held an illegal referendum in which Albanians voted for the political and cultural autonomy of "Ilirida," the Albanian-dominated regions of the country. Although the project went no further, Slav Macedonians have always feared that, whatever the local Albanians may say, the long-term ethnic Albanian goal is secession and union with a future independent Kosovo or even with a Greater Albania.

Despite this, and despite several outbreaks of protest and periodic arrests for alleged conspiracies, the relationship between Macedonia's Slavs and Albanians, while never very good, has never sunk to anywhere near the levels of visceral hatred that existed between Serbs and Albanians in neighboring Kosovo. Indeed, although Macedonian Slavs and Albanians live more or less separate but parallel lives, and Albanians complain that they are second-class citizens, an ethnic Albanian party has, since 1991, been represented in government. Until 1998, though, it was arguable that its presence was more symbolic than real.

A change came after the elections in November of that year. In a hitherto unimaginable shift, Macedonia's hardcore Slav nationalist party, the Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization–Democratic Party for Macedonian National Unity, entered into a coalition government with the more nationalist of Macedonia's two main ethnic Albanian parties, the Democratic Party of Albanians (DPA), which is led by Arben Xhaferi, a fifty-three-year-old former journalist. Until then the party of their new Macedonian partners had treated Albanians as a mortal threat, describing them in terms similar to those used by nationalists in neighboring Serbia. And until the coalition was formed, Mr. Xhaferi's party had talked of making Macedonia a federal state, a move that Slavs believe would simply be a steppingstone to secession by the Albanians. But now proposals for federalization were put aside, along with the more extreme language of Macedonian Slav nationalism. Progress began to be made in improving conditions for Albanians in Macedonia, but evidently this progress proved too slow for some. Abedin Imeri, the head of the Tetovo branch of the DPA, told me: "Yes, we participate in government but we are not equal. We only stay because we think it is the only way to reach a solution. On the other hand we have to listen to the voices of those who are firing from the mountains. We have to sit down and discuss things but we must not ignore them completely. After all they are Albanians and quite a few of them."

In Skopje, the Macedonian capital, I went to see Adelina Marku, who used to be Mr. Xhaferi's spokeswoman but now runs her own software business. She comes from Debar, which lies close to the border with Albania. With the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and the creation of Yugoslavia, Debar, whose population is heavily ethnic Albanian, was cut off from many of the nearby villages, which now lie in Albania. Her father is a judge, but as she told me with some passion, when her father is in court, and even if both sides in a dispute are Albanian, everyone has to speak Macedonian. So, I asked her, wouldn't Albanians in Debar like a Greater Albania? "Of course they want that," she blurted out. But, in a view I was to hear echoed among Albanians everywhere I went, she went on to say, "We have to face reality. It is too late for that, so what is important now is to make borders unimportant." (Indeed that phrase "to make bor-ders unimportant" is much heard now in the Balkans from people who want both ethnic unity and an end to fighting.)

In some ways the emergence of the NLA in Macedonia has less to do with relations between Albanians and Slav Macedonians and more to do with relations among Albanians. Looking back two years we can see that the Kosovo war polarized Macedonia, with Slavs supporting the Serbs and Albanians supporting their ethnic kin in Kosovo. But the government did remarkably well to survive the conflict, which also saw the influx—and then rapid return—of some 242,000 Kosovo Albanian refugees. What changed?

Saso Ordanovski, the editor of Forum, a liberal Skopje magazine, articulates the view of many Slav Macedonians when he says the real problem is that Kosovo is in chaos and this chaos is being exported to his country, either by extremists who want to create a Greater Albania or Greater Kosovo or by criminals for whom "chaos makes more profit." Of course no one denies that there are extreme nationalists who would like to unite all Albanians in one country or that there are plenty of Albanian gangsters who profit from the lack of adequate political institutions in Kosovo; but the roots of the NLA are deeper and far more tortuous than this.

3.
On January 26, 2000, two ethnic Albanian brothers were killed by the Serbian police in Dobrosin, Daut Sulejmani's village, just inside the Serbian border. Dobrosin lies in the Presevo Valley, inside what is called the Ground Safety Zone (GSZ), a five-kilometer strip that was originally set up in 1999 to separate NATO-led forces in Kosovo from Yugoslav security forces in Serbia and Montenegro. Only lightly armed Serbian police were allowed in the GSZ. Soon after the brothers were killed, Albanian guerrillas calling themselves the Liberation Army of Presevo, Medvedja, and Bujanovac (UCPMB) appeared in the village. These are the names of three districts in southern Serbia where there are 100,000 or so Albanians. Politically they were linked to the Popular Movement for Kosovo, the LPK, a tiny party of deeply committed ethnic Albanian nationalists which had, however, been instrumental in creating the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA) in 1993.

With the creation of the GSZ, an effective power vacuum was created inside a substantial chunk of this Albanian-populated region. Immediately outside it, tensions were also heightened with the arrival of Serbian troops and police who had just been pulled out of Kosovo. On a high, and convinced that the West was behind them whatever they did, former KLA men, including those who came from the Presevo Valley, decided to create their own force—the UCPMB. "It is an open secret," said a former ranking LPK man, Pleurat Sejdiu, now co-minister of health in the UN administration in Kosovo, "that they are fighting for the land [in Serbia] to be part of Kosovo in the future." But the point was also strategic. The Kosovars were already thinking of a territorial deal with the Serbs by which they would gain the Presevo Valley and lose ethnically Serbian areas in the north of Kosovo.

Today there are people, especially foreigners, who will tell you that the US funded, trained, and helped the UCPMB. But if you ask them for evidence they can point to none. By contrast it seems plausible that until October 5 of last year, when Mr. Milosevic fell, US troops who control this part of Kosovo's border may have been less than diligent in choking off supply lines to the UCPMB because anything that helped destabilize Milosevic was deemed to be a good thing. Rumors of US help to the UCPMB were also encouraged by the guerrillas themselves because they knew they would gain recruits if it was believed that they had covert US approval. I asked Jonuz Musliu, the head of the UCPMB's political arm, if the US had not been particularly tough in closing the border until Milosevic fell, and he replied that if I thought this I "would not be wrong."

Since the fall of Milosevic everything has changed along the border. The West's main concern is now to help shore up democratic forces in Belgrade. As a result the UCPMB has found itself dragooned into peace talks with the Serbs; and in areas where it is not active the Yugoslav army has been invited back to police the GSZ. So now, with Serbs hemming him in on three sides and a stricter US-controlled regime on the border, the UCPMB's Commander Leshi, who heads the delegation now talking to the Serbs, is full of phrases designed to please the Western ear. On his desk he has two flags, an Albanian one and a Stars and Stripes. Asked if he and his fellow ethnic Albanians could make a deal with Serbian authorities, he told me: "If you have all of your rights, then frontiers are not important. If the Serbian side accepts that, then that's okay, but if they don't, then we'll ask to be attached to Kosovo."

It is easy to be cynical and think that men like Commander Leshi would say such things to a Westerner. But there is also another interpretation. As my friend Jean-Baptiste kept insisting as we traveled together: "The film script has changed. Everything has changed since the fall of Milosevic and people like Commander Leshi have got the message. The script is now, 'human rights, minority rights, and no change of borders,' and those who don't get the message are going to lose everything."

4.
Could it be then that the NLA in Macedonia is the creation not of ideologues of a Greater Albania, but of losers who have not understood that the script has changed, that fighting for ethnic separatism now has no chance of Western support? Many of the founders of the KLA were members of the LPK. Several key members of the LPK were Macedonian Albanians. They included Fazli Veliu, the LPK chairman through much of the 1990s, and Bardhyl Mahmuti, a key organizer and fund-raiser who lived in exile in Vevey, Switzerland. In 1993 a meeting of ethnic Albanian activists took place in Kicevo in western Macedonia, Fazli Veliu's hometown, and there a decision was made to move toward active armed resistance. The result, in August of that year, was the formation of the LPK and in turn the KLA. Among those present at the Kicevo meeting was Hashim Thaci, later to emerge as the political head of the KLA, and Ali Ahmeti, Fazli Veliu's nephew.

After the Kosovo war, men like Bardhyl Mahmuti said that the LPK had served its purpose and should now be disbanded. Mahmuti is now secretary-general of Hashim Thaci's Democratic Party of Kosovo (PDK), which has absorbed many former top LPK people. By contrast, a hard core of LPK members decided to keep the old party alive. These men had a major part in setting up both the UCPMB and the NLA. So did some former LPK men in the Kosovo Protection Corps, which was set up in 1999 as a civil emergency force but absorbed a good part of the former KLA military leadership. In Macedonia the political leader of the NLA is Ali Ahmeti, who did much to arrange supplies for the KLA during the Kosovo war. Ever since the end of the Kosovo war many of the Macedonian Albanian LPK men had been agitating to start a conflict in Macedonia. Most of their old comrades, now in powerful Kosovo parties or even in the civil administration, tried to dissuade them, arguing that a new war would not be in the interests of Kosovo. Bardhyl Mahmuti, who has since called for the NLA to lay down their arms, says: "I tried but I failed."

Of course the reason why the Kosovar political leaders wanted to dissuade their former comrades—who now find themselves the losers of Kosovo politics and unable to return safely to Macedonia—from starting a war was simple. They feared that if they started a conflict in Macedonia this would do tremendous harm to Kosovo's image, even more harm than the ethnic cleansing of Serbs by Kosovars has already done; and this would mean that Kosovo would be accused of undermining the peace in the Balkans. The consensus among practically all powerful countries that Kosovo cannot be independent would be strengthened. And that is exactly what has happened.

In all their official declarations, however, the NLA leaders say that they want only rights for Macedonia's Albanians and not the breakup of the state. Even Emrush Xhemajli, the head of the LPK, says the same thing. Some newspapers have described him, along with his friend Ramush Haradinaj, a former KLA commander and now a politician, as one of the godfathers of the Macedonian conflict. He may be, but when he invited me to lunch in Pristina, he was charming and careful not to say one word that might be construed as giving backing to the idea of a Greater Kosovo or Greater Albania. "In July 2000 our party decided to accept the principle of European integration and not to demand border changes." He added: "As far as I know there is no military solution in Macedonia. Albanians there want constitutional reform and everyone supports that, but Macedonian President Boris Trajkovski declared that he is against changing the constitution or making Macedonia a bilingual state, and so, in that way, the state may dissolve." If that sounds like a threat, I suppose it is meant to.

Curiously, the fact that US troops did little or nothing to stop the first buildup of arms and men moving from Kosovo to Macedonia has already been seized upon by conspiracy theorists and the Macedonian authorities as proof that something odd was afoot. But there is no evidence that this laxity had an ulterior motive, as may have been the case when US troops allowed supplies to reach the UCPMB guerrillas over the Serbian border. Indeed British officials, among others, speak scornfully of the behavior of US troops in Kosovo, saying that they are so concerned with "force protection" that they are scarcely able to do much else.

Still, the interesting result of what, until now anyway, has been little more than a phony war in Macedonia is that Kosovo has seen its dream of independence fade from view, at least for the while. By contrast, serious talks between the Macedonian government and ethnic Albanians on the future of Macedonia have begun with high-powered backing from the EU and the US. Those talks would probably not have started unless the NLA had shocked all concerned.

The prerequisite to creating a Greater Kosovo including parts of Macedonia or a Greater Albania has, of course, to be an independent Kosovo. The fact (and one that Kosovars are only just beginning to understand) is that there is not going to be one any time soon. One of the main reasons for this is that a UN Security Council resolution would be required to create a new state, and that would need the votes of Russia and China. They won't support Kosovo's independence because of the repercussions this might have for Chechnya and Tibet.

So Kosovo will linger in an international no man's land. This autumn the province should have elections for a province-wide assembly, but no one yet knows what its powers will be. One thing seems certain: the election campaign is bound to concentrate on Kosovo's own problems, particularly its own prospects for independence, and not on demands for a Greater Albania. Most Kosovo Albanians I know realize that the events of the last two years have destroyed the sympathy that the world had for them during the Kosovo war. Since 1999, the failure of most prominent Kosovo Albanians to make convincing efforts to prevent revenge attacks and the ethnic cleansing of Serbs, Roma, and others from most of Kosovo has cost them dearly. Now, the adventurism of a relatively few Albanians in southern Serbia and Macedonia has delighted opponents of independence. Kosovo is taking the place in Western newspapers recently vacated by Serbia. In 2001, the Serbs who elected Kostunica are the good guys and Albanians are the bad guys. Western newspapers and TV reporters like things to be black and white.

5.
I had not been to Tirana, the capital of Albania, for eighteen months, and I could hardly believe my eyes. There is construction everywhere. Huge apartment blocks are shooting up across the city, and, after many decades of poverty, all the economic statistics are pointing upward, too. According to the IMF, the economy is now growing at an annual rate of 7 percent. If there is one thing that Albania's Albanians understand it is that if they want growth and prosperity, more war in the Balkans will certainly undermine their chances to have them.

Tirana's voice does not count for much in Kosovo, or Macedonia for that matter, but it is not irrelevant either. As the conflict in Macedonia flared up, the Albanian government invited the main ethnic Albanian leaders from Kosovo and Macedonia to a "pan-Albanian" meeting in Tirana. "We told them they need to be active in stopping extremist acts," Paskal Milo, Albania's foreign minister, told me. (He had greeted me with a sigh: "I suppose you have come looking for the authors of Greater Albania?")

According to Mr. Milo, the government in Tirana sees its duty as protecting the rights of Albanians outside Albania in much the same way as Hungary does for Hungarians in Yugoslavia or Romania; but that does not mean changing borders. "We don't support that," he said, "but we want these borders to become less important. We are thinking of joining the EU so we want this to be a region of cooperation. The philosophy of nationalism, of extremism, goes against the principles of a united Europe. The nationalists and extremists want to close borders and create small nation-states. For us that would be counterproductive."

Following this conversation a cynical Western diplomat told me: "They'll say whatever we want, followed by 'where's the cash?'" But I saw no reason to doubt that Mr. Milo meant what he said. The Albanian government has asked NATO to help it police its border in order to prevent its territory being used for attacks on Macedonia by the NLA.

No major party in Albania calls for the creation of a Greater Albania. Most Albanians just want their country to emerge from decades of poverty and oppression and become a normal place. Remzi Lani, the head of the Albanian Media Institute and an astute political analyst, told me: "If I said there were no people who dreamed of a Greater Albania I would be wrong. But it is not a popular idea. If the Security Council or an international conference offered us a Greater Albania we would not refuse it, but on the other hand we are not going to fight for it either."

In Kosovo, in Macedonia, in southern Serbia, and to a lesser extent in Montenegro, there is an active "Albanian question." But the teeth of a relatively few hard-liners can be drawn if Albanians feel their rights are represented in the countries in which they live, if they believe that Kosovo will, one day, be independent, and, most important of all, if they can prosper in a southeastern Europe where borders may soon come to mean as much as they do today between Germany, France, and Luxembourg.

In Macedonia the NLA still has the potential to shatter the hope that Macedonian Slavs and Albanians can sort out their differences before a real war breaks out, rather than afterward. But one thing is sure: none of the NATO nations or the other powerful countries involved in the Balkans are ready to endorse a change of borders. Serbs learned this the hard way, and Albanians say they understand it. The question now is whether intelligent leadership in Kosovo and on both sides in Macedonia can prevent the logic of war from tipping the region into yet more bloodshed.

—April 17, 2001

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KOSOVO SERBIAN ISSUE AND THE GREATER ALBANIA PROJECT

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Slavenko Terzic, Ph.D.
Historical institute of Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts



In academic circles, both domestic and foreign, there has been no analysis of the historical and conceptual roots of the Greater Albania project, which would help unravel and explain the current events in Southeastern Europe1. Unfortunately, this has left the field wide open for a very powerful kind of propaganda which rejects the only reliable facts, and in their place sets up new and imaginative confabulations on which whole theories about the past and present of the region are often based. This article seeks to contribute to a better understanding of the foundations of the national project for a Greater Albania.

I

The concept of a greater Albanian state did not appear as an authentic expression of the Albanian national movement. Until the beginning of the Great Eastern Crisis (1875-1878), Albanians, unlike other Balkan nations – Serbs, Greeks, Bulgarians, Rumanians – did not attempt to create a national state through modern political organization. A regional and religious identity was dominant among the Albanians. Disorganized forms of disobedience to the central authority were the only expressions of conservative resistance from feudal Muslim lords to the reforms which the Ottoman Empire tried to implement during the 19th century, under pressure from the great European powers. It is well known that Bosnian and Albanian feudal lords were the sternest defenders of Islamic theocratic society and offered the most sustained and strongest resistance to attempts from central power in Istanbul to introduce a little order into the functioning of the state.

This state of affairs among the Albanians was not simply the result of the economic, social and cultural under-development of Albanian society, or the absence of even an embryonic modern political elite. The main power of the expansionist Albanian movement came from Muslim Albanians. With the exception of isolated examples of cultural efforts among the Albanians, mostly those in Diaspora (Istanbul, Egypt, South Italy), Albanian Muslims were the iron fist of the Ottoman Empire in its efforts to suppress the Christian movement in South Eastern Europe. With their patriarchal-oriental society of Asian type, they constituted the main obstacle to Europeanization of this part of Europe in the 19th and 20th century. Exceptions to this were an insignificant catholic minority in the north of Albania, mainly in the region of Skadar, and the more numerous orthodox community in the south of Albania, which was strongly influenced by the Greek cultural orbit.

All attempts by Balkan Christians to win over the Albanians to the common struggle against the Ottoman Empire and for the aim of national liberation and modernization of their societies were fruitless. At the beginning of the Great Eastern Crisis Albanians were at the forefront of the Turkish regular, and particularly irregular troops (bashibozuk) and committed numerous atrocities in battles against the Christian rebels. During the crisis the Albanians did not join the liberation movements of the Balkan Christians in any way.

It is completely clear that the birth of the Albanian league in 1878 and its political program were not an expression of Albanian original liberation efforts, which anyhow were late in coming compared to other peoples. The league was an instrument, primarily in Turkish hands, and later in the hands of other powers, for the preservation of the Ottoman Empire. The Albanian central revolutionary committee (Abdul Frasheri, Pashko Vaso, Sami Frasheri, Zija Prishtina, Jani Vreto and others) was founded in April 1878 in Istanbul and its was to organize Albanian popular resistance to the liberation actions in Montenegro, Serbia and Greece. Abdul Frasheri used the foreign press to publish alleged protest by the Albanian population against the actions in above mentioned Christian states2. According to the reports from Krijevski, a French consul in Thessaloniki, Turkish powers gave weapons to the Albanian leaders3. It was a way of manipulating the interests of the Albanian people. This is also shown by the fact that Turkey abolished the League as soon as it started claiming greater autonomy from central authority.

It is not by chance that the formation of the Albanian league coincided with the preparations for the Berlin Congress with the Eastern Question on its agenda.

The attempt by Russia, as a major power, to solve the so called Eastern Question on its own, and thus to secure its interests by creating a greater Slav state / Greater Bulgaria, at the peace conference in San Stefan (1878) was met with fervent opposition from other major European powers. Although the project of Greater Bulgaria encompassed a significant part of territory inhabited largely by Serbian or, in other parts, Greek population, Turks, with the support of English diplomacy, persuades other powers that the Albanians would be the best defenders against the Slav and generally Christian "threat". From that time until the present day the Albanians have been presenting themselves to the public of Western Europe as major defenders against an alleged expansion of pan-Slavism into Southeastern Europe and as a supposedly genuine factor of Europeanization in this region. In essence, the "Greater Albania" project, as a product of the great powers, Balkan policy, is directly opposed to the liberation movement of an overwhelming majority of the Balkan Christians, which have all been (allowing for some exceptions) in the spirit of modernization, based on the original principles of the liberal and democratic European tradition.

This megalomaniac project in the hands of Turkish and other powers was to designed to counteract another equally megalomaniac project originating from Russia. It was yet another sign that neither Russia nor other great powers cared about a just solution to the Easter Question but only about such state creations whish would guarantee their strategic interests in the Balkans.

The Greater Albanian political concept in its original and authentic program was totally imbued with the spirit of pan-Islamism and radical political Islam. Only from time to time did the Albanian political elite try to hide the distinctive Islamic feature of the foundations of their ideology, usually prompted by a desire to secure the support of some Western power. A militant from of Islam prevailed in Old Serbia, primarily in Kosovo and Metohija, as well as in the regions of today’s Western Macedonia, brought by the Albanian population from the mountainous parts of North Albania who forcefully descended into the gentle and fertile parts of this region. The forceful intrusions followed by centuries-long Muslim violence against the local Christians are today insistently presented as alleged repression of Albanians by local Christians.

II

In the European literature it is well known that the regions of today’s Middle Albania constitute the original centers of Albanian population. A distinguished German Albanologist, Georg Stadtmuller points out that the original regions of Albanian settlement encompass the valley of the river Shkumba, both sides of the river Mat, Kroja and some other neighboring parts4. The history of the Albanians and the Albanian society is far more complex than is usually presented today. This is true not only of the region of today’s Albania but also of the neighboring countries in which Albanians live as national minorities. Their religious heterogeneity and a distinctive tribal identity have always been a permanent source of internal conflict which result in the chronic instability of this country. This "unstable" condition of the young state threatens primarily non-Albanian people in Albania itself, but also in the neighborhood. We must not overlook the fact that in the territory of today’s Albania large Slav settlements have existed for centuries and that Slav toponymisc have been largely preserved up to the present day. In recent time, from the creation of the first Albanian state in 1912, and especially during the rule of the Albanian communist dictator Enver Hoja, a large part of non-Albanian, particularly Slav population, excluding Greeks, were assimilated by the most brutal means of state repression.

The Greater Albania project is directly connected with the consequences of the Turkish conquests in South Eastern Europe, and especially with the wars of European Christian powers against Turkey towards the end of the 17th century. It has remained, in a sense, as a long reaching hand of the Ottoman spirit in Europe, as a vehicle of that kind of life, customs and mentalities which were characteristic for the territory of the South Eastern Europe at the time of Ottoman rule. The Christian population of the European Turkey, primarily of Old Serbia and the northern part of Macedonia, joined the struggle of the European powers after the siege of Vienna en-mass (1683) to oust the Turks from Europe. After the defeat of the Europeans (1690) as a reprisal this population was subjected to massive atrocities and, in essence, the first major ethnic cleansing. Turkish destructive military campaigns allowed the overflow of Albanian people from their original regions into the countries of their neighbors, both Slavs and Greeks. It was not before the 18th century that masses of Albanian stock breeders from the hilly regions of their country started descending into the fertile lands of Kosovo and Metohija populated by orthodox Serbs in overwhelming majority, as well as into the regions of today’s western Macedonia, form Skoplje to Bitolj populated by undoubtedly Serbian and Macedonian Slav population.

Besides the massive and almost regular atrocities which characterized this conquest of Old Serbia, there were also numerous other ways in which the compact Serbian ethnic body was broken up (forced Islamisization, different forms of robbery, plunder, destruction of religious sites, and many other forms of terror). This is testified to by many travel writers, and particularly Roman missionaries and visitors. These processes were convincingly described in, among numerous other Vatican sources, the report of the archbishop of Skoplje Matija Masarek in 1764. The archbishop reports on fresh colonies of Arbanas who had left their hills and settled in the gentle region of Metohija, in the vicinity of Djakovica. These Arbanas, new comers in Serbia, wrote archbishop Masarek, did not obey the orders of Christ’s Apostles, but quickly converted to Islam pushing out the orthodox and catholic population from their villages and taking over their lands ("maledetti Albanesi, I quali per forya si soo impadroniti di quasi tutti li terreni scismatici e cattolici serviani").

A similar process went on in the Albanian-Greek boundary regions. Albanian migration under the Turks went towards Greek lands, particularly Epir. With the strengthening of the Greek liberation movement Turkey used Muslim Albanians to secure the rule over the largest possible parts of Epir and Thesalia. The Greater Albania ideology explained it thus: "From the banks of the river Bojana up to Janjina lives a unified and homogenous people. From Janjina to the gulf of Ambracia is the terrain which Greek religious and other propaganda denies to the Albanians who prevail there, if not in number, then in strength and power to resist".5

That Kosovo and Metohija, of which Albanian authors often speak as "Albanian land" were irrefutably the central regions of Serbian settlement, is testified to by the fact that the most important monuments of Serbian architecture and Serbian spirituality were erected there. In Kosovo and Metohija alone 1,400 monasteries, churches and other Serbian monuments were built. The most famous among them are the Patriarchy church in Pec, monasteries Banjska, Gracanica, Decani, St. Archangel near Prizren, Bogorodica Ljeviska in Prizren etc. A logical question can be asked: why would Serbs erect their central church, the Patriarchy in Pec, in the region where they were not in majority and which was not the central point of their people’s homeland?

The greatest changes in ethnic structure of the population of this part of Old Serbia occurred from the middle of the 18th up to the middle of the 19th century, and from the Berlin congress in 1878 up to the liberation of these regions from Turkish rule in 1912. They were basically a consequence of the conflict between the Islamic Ottoman-feudal concept on the one hand, and the European Christian concept of society on the other hand. Samuel Huntington is quite right when he defines similar processes today as "conflicts of civilization". Kosovo and Metohija may be the most convincing example of such a conflict today, bearing in mind that the radical Islamic features of the Albanian secessionist movement are quite skillfully masked by European phraseology and European symbols.

Numerous foreign authors testify to the ethnic, political and religious circumstances in these regions. These are the works of Ami Bue, Joseph Muller, Johan Georg von Han, Ivan Stepanovich Jastrebov, Aleksandar Giljferding, Viktor Berar, Gaston Gravier and others. For example, Joseph Muller reports the data from 1838 about the religious and linguistic structure of the population in Metohija – in Pec, Prizren and Djakovica; in Pec, orthodox and Muslim Serbs were in a majority (92.09%) in relation to the catholic and Muslim Albanians (4.17%). In Prizren the percentage of Serbs, Muslim and Christian, from the total population (24.950) amounted to 73.68, whereas the percentage of Albanians, Muslim and catholic, amounted to 16.63%. Only Djakovica had a clear Albanian majority – the percentage of the Albanians, Muslim and catholic, amounted to 80.76%, whereas the percentage of Serbs, Christian and Muslim, amounted to 18.05%.6

The facts that Prizren, a town in Old Serbia, and on the outskirts of the Albanian ethnic region was chosen as the place for the session of the Albanian league in 1878 testifies to the extremely expansionist nature of Albanian aims. That is exactly were it was necessary to create a strong obstacle to further strengthening of the Serbian liberation movement in Old Serbia. And it was not a coincidence that the session of the Albanian League was not held in Albania, say in Drac, Valona, Tirana or some other town. From the time of the Great Eastern Crisis (1875-1878) the neighboring regions of Albania such as Kosovo, Metohija, today’s western Slav Macedonia and northern Epir, were Albanians had massively settled, mainly in the 18th and 19th century, started being referred to as "Albanian lands". So the Albanian league, created on the eve of the Berlin Congress, took it upon itself to prevent the liberation of the "Albanian lands" from the neighboring peoples. The Leagues's documents reveal the essence of the movement. The sessions were held in a Prizren mosque, and the special feature of the Statute (Kararname) was Islam. Albania and Albanians were not explicitly mentioned in any of the 16 articles of the Statute, but instead they speak in general terms of "nation and motherland", "country", "our land", "Balkan country", "in the Balkans" and similar. The political subjects of the Union (League) are simply Muslims; the article 7 talks of the need for the Union with "our long-suffering fellow countrymen and members of the same faith in the Balkans", and the last 16th article qualifies the abandonment of the Union as the abandonment "of Islam".7 It is also telling that Muslim land owners from Raska, and even Bosnia and Herzegovina were present at this meeting.

Basically the same ideas served as a foundation program for the so called Pec league in 1899 and so called second Prizren league in 1943. After the Turks were ousted from Europe in 1912, and after the formation of an independent Albanian state, the programme's aims were clearly adapted somewhat to the new political circumstances and new protecting powers. The insistence on a totally pure ethnic Albanian state is typical for the conceptual program of Greater Albania, as is the rejection of any multi-ethnic concept. In accordance with such a program, the organized ethnic cleansing of non-Albanian population from the regions which were proclaimed as "Albanian lands" started right after the Berlin congress. During the period from 1876 to 1912 around 150,000 orthodox Serbs were forced to leave Old Serbia, that is the then Kosovo vilajet.8 We find similar ideas in Ismail Kemal Bey Vlora, the president of the first Albanian interim government. As the government president he demanded that the great powers cleanse "Albanian lend" of Slavs and Greeks.9 He also praised Albanians for having ousted "Christian Slavs"with their guns and violence.10

III

After the First Balkan war in 1912, in which the Albanians fought on the Turkish side, the conference of ambassadors in London in 1913 determined the borders of the newly created Albanian state. In November 1921, at the conference of ambassadors in Paris it was agreed to recognize Albania as an independent and sovereign state (before that, in 1920, Albania was received into the League of National). Although the conference of ambassadors in Paris determined principally the borders which basically reiterated the decisions from the London conference, the definitive border between the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenians on one side and Albanians on the other side was determined by the protocol on borders decided by the International committee in Florence, 26th June 1926.

The Albanian state encompassed the biggest part of ethnic Albanian territory. It is perfectly clear that in the Balkans with its large-scale migrations and mixing of races, languages and religions, particularly during the centuries-long Turkish rule, it was not possible to draw clear and pre ethnic borders. A number of Albanians who, as has been mentioned, settled in Old Serbia in the 18th and 19th century, remained within the borders of the Kingdom of Serbia, but also tens of thousands of Serbs, orthodox and Muslim, remained in the newly crated Albanian state, as well as a large number of Greeks, who, following the decision of great powers, were left in the Albanian state. The regions which Greater Albania propaganda claims, have never been a part of an Albanian state. However, a certain number of Albanian political leaders from the time of Ottoman rule, who lost their privileges with the disappearance of Turkey, did not want to accept the borders of the newly created states in the Balkans, and they immediately started their activity aimed at the breaking up these new states, primarily Serbia and Greece. This activity, particularly strong in the eve of the Second World War, was directly supported by fascist powers, especially fascist Italy.

IV

The Greater Albanian irredentist activity between the two World Wars enjoyed strong support form fascist powers, which were also interested in breaking up the newly created Yugoslav state which, they claimed, was the creation of the"Versailles siystem". Italy was in the firs place, but there was also the Third communist international (Kominterna) with its headquarters in Moscow. The grater Albanian "kosovo.netmittee" joined the Kominterna in 1920 ; in December 1921 Baajream Curi, one of the leaders of this organization, visited a Soviet emissary in Vienna and discussed the issue of Kosovo and Metohija with him, having handed him a memorandum on the Committee’s intentions.11

It is conspicuous that between the two world wars the leadership of fascists and communist political organizations competed in supporting separatism among the Albanians of Kosovo and Metohija. The fascist Italy directly supported the actions of Albanian terrorists (kacak) in Yugoslavia in the years after the First World War. Hasan Prishtina and Mustafa Kroja, leaders of this movement, received 50.000 liras from the Italian government at the beginning, and later 200.000, and form September 1927 much larger sums. The Italian government coordinated the activities of Croatian and Bulgarian fascists led by Ante Pavelic and Ivan-Vanco Mihailov respectively, and the activities of Hasan Prishtina and other leaders of separatist great Albanian movement among Yugoslav Albanians.12

From 1939 an even stronger and better organized activity of fascist Italy was directed toward Greece and Yugoslavia. As it is known, Italy occupied and annexed Albania on the 7th April 1939. Already in July 1939, Count Cano gave instructions to Albanian emigrant for action in Epir and Kosovo and Metohija; he often repeated that irredentism in Kosovo and Metohija was "a knife aimed at the backbone of Yugoslavia!" The some year a bureau for the organization of the Albanian irredentist movement was opened in Roem. Italy generously helped the new leaders of great Albanian "Kosovo committee" Bedri Pejani and Ibarhim Djakova. The Albanian fascist party was created in Albania, and on the occasion of Count Cano's visit in Tirana, he promised the speedy realization of the Great Albania project. At the beginning of 1940, Kolj Biba, the secretary of the Albanian fascist party, said in Skadar that Italy would soon annex the parts of Yugoslavia and Greece populated by Albanians. A new "kosovo.netmittee" with Cerim bey Mahmudbegovic from Pec was formed in Tirana, in the same year.

With the beginning of the Second World War and shortly after, when fascist powers, headed by Germany and Italy, attacked Yugoslavia, a bloody realiyation of the Greater Albania project started. A larger part of Kosovo (with the exception of municipalities of Podujevo, Vucitrn and Kosovska Mitrovica) and the whole of Metohija were annexed to fascist Greater Albania. Parts of Gnjilani, Urosevac, north of Pasjan, Kacanik, Vitin a;nd Sirinic district were annexed to the newly created Greater Bulgaria. Parts of western Macedonia with Tetovo, Gostivar, Kicevo, Debar, Strug and St. Naum were also absorber into Greater Albania. The Vienna agreement from April 1941 determined the demarcation line between Greater Bulgaria and Greater Albania, but the Bulgarians were not content with this division.

On 30th May 1941 Mustafa Kroja, the president of the puppet government, held a lecture in the Italian Royal academy on the natural and historical roots of Greater Albania. In June 1942 he visited Kosovo and Metohija and at the meeting with Albanian leaders he publicly declared that "the Serbian population in Kosovo should be removed as soon as possible… All indigenous Serbs should be qualified as colonists and as souch, via the Albanian and Italian government, be sent to concentration camps in Albania. Serbian settlers should be killed."13 It was revealed, yet again, that the Greater Albanian national programme leaves no room for any other people but Albanian.

In the four years of occupation a great deal was done towards the realiyation of the Greater Albanian project in Kosovo and Metohija. Local Albanians with the help of their fellow countrymen from Albania and under the protection of the occupying powers, committed massive atrocities against Serbs. The European public is not familiar with the scope of these crimes. According to the data of the American Office of Strategic Service, in the period from April 1941 to August 1942, Albanians killed around 10.000 Serbs.14 Even priests of the Serbian Orthodox church were arrested and killed. Serafim, the Bishope of Raska and Priyren, was arrested and interned to Tirana where he died on January the 13th 1945. In the territory under Italian occupation the Albanians killed 14 priests and one nun. For example, Damaskin Boskovic, the head of Devic monastery, was killed in a beastly way, and some priests Luka Popovic, Uros Popovic and Slobodan Popovic were killed during the service of Holly liturgy.15

After Italy occupied these territories not only did etnic cleansing start, but also a systematic implementation of the Greater Albanian polical and culutral programme in all spheres of life. A small number of Serbian children who attended schools under Italian occupation were forced to study in Albanian language. It was the same with children in western Macedonia. Serbs were massively expelled from Kosovo and Metohija and tens of thousands of Albanians from Albania settled there (some historians say that the number is as high as 100.000 people). By April 1942 as many as 60.000 refugees from Metohija and parts of Kosovo had amassed around the southern borders of Serbia under German occupation which became part of Greater Albania. These events significantly changed the etnic structure of this part of Serbia, that is Yugoslavia, and in essence it was one of the most important assumptions for a successful continuation of the Greater Albanian programme after the Second World War under the communist rule. Such activity of communist oligarchy (Hoja, Nimani, Deva, Bakali, Vlasi) of the Kosovo-Metohija Albanians was fully supported within the party and state elite in Tito's Yugoslavia.

After the capitulation of fascist Italy, Germany encouraged the formation of a socalled "Second Priyren league" towards the end of 1943 in Prizren. The league was organized under the auspices of Abwehr, the German military secret service and headed by Jafer Deva, Bedri Pejani, Ismet Krieziu and other. The terror to which Serbs were subjected, with numerous individual and large scale crimes lasted until March 1944 when it began to slacken.

Among numerous testimonies to the scopes of ethnic cleansing of Serbs from these regions, there is that of Hermann Neubacher, a special political representative of the Third Reich for Southeast Europe from autumn 1943: "Shiptars were in a hurry to expel as many Serbs as possible from the country. From those expelled local tyrants often took a gift in gold for permission to emigrate… When general Nedic complained bitterly to me, I urgently recommended the Arbanas government to put an end to these expulsions. When I saw that my intervention was unsuccessful, I offered my resignation from the mission in Albania: I will have to give up Albania to someone else to defend it from the territorial greed of Bulgarians. Jefer Deva, who has influence in the Kosovo region, promised me that he would intervene. He did it successfully. Despite that many evils were committed after 1941."16 After the capitulation of fascist Italy the infamous "Skenderbeg SS division" made up of Albanians was formed under the direction of the German occupation forces. This organization pursued the project of Greater Albania until the final liberation of these regions.

V

The Communist movement between the two world wars, headed by the Comintern, counted heavily on the activities of Albanian Irredentism. Albanian emigrants in the USSR founded the Communist group of Albania in 1928. As in other parts of Yugoslavia where after 1928 communists started cooperating with fascist groups in what they called "national revolutionary groups", Yugoslav communists also counted on the cooperation of extreme Albanian nationalists. So, for example, the Fourth Congress of the Yugoslav Communist Party, held in Dresden in 1928, stressed in its Resolution that the Party expressed solidarity with the revolutionary workers and peasants and "Albanian national-revolutionary movement in the shape of the kosovo.netmittee and invited the working class to fully support the struggle of the dismembered and suppressed people for an independent and united Albania". Somewhat later, mid-1937, the Yugoslav Communist Party founded a Regional Committee of the Yugoslav Communists Party for Kosovo and Metohija which represented the foundation for future autonomy of this region in communist Yugoslavia. The structure of Tito's Yugoslavia rested almost totally on the pre-war organizational-territorial structure of the Communist Party.

A whole set of decisions made by Tito's communist movement show quite clearly that the leadership of Yugoslav communists with Josip Broz Tito on the top were consistent with their strategy of weakening the Serbian factor in future Yugoslavia, and that the Albanian factor was an important means in that strategy. This was also noted by foreign observers of political developments in Yugoslavia during the Second world war. Towards the end of 1944, major John Hanicker Major, a member of the Britsh military mission to the south of Serbia, serving as a chief of the local allied forces mission to the Headquarters of partisan movement in Serbia reported: "I believed Tito when he said that he was not interested in the future of Kosovo, which he was ready to give up to Albania just for asking."17 Only when we bear in mind this global national strategy of the Communist party of Yugoslavia does it become clear why the communist leadership did nothing to counterbalance the consequences of a forced change of ethnic structure in this part of Serbia which occurred under fascist occupation. It was completely logical to expect that the expelled Serbs would return to their land in Kosovo and Metohija after the Second World War and that the unjustices which had happened as a consequence of fascist aggression against the Yugoslav communist government, headed by Tito, passed a "Temporary prohibition of the return of colonists to their earlier places of residence" (although it was not a case of colonists only but also of indigenous Serbs), which also said: "It has been noticed recently that families of colonists (settlers( who were earlier settled in Macedonia, Kosovo, Metohija, Srem and Vojvodina are migrating and returning without obtaining permission from the people's authorities", and therefore a decision was passed which said – "colonists are temporarily prohibited from returning to their earlier places of residence and are ordered to stay in their present places of residence".18 Soon after the liberation on a "Law on revision of the allotment of land to colonists and farming applicants in Macedonia and Kosovo-Metohija region"19, and on November 2nd 1946, a "Law on the revision of allotment of land to colonists and farming applicants in the National Republic of Macedonia and in Autonomous Kosovo-Metohija region".20

Thus the result of the occupation of fascist Italy and fascist Germany during the Second World War and the sanctioning of these results by the leadership of Yugoslav communists, represented actually the first stage of the Greater Albanian political project. Everything that was done in Tito's Yugoslavia contributed to the strengthening of Greater Albanaian political ideology which in new circumstances was cleverly disguised under the communist parole of "brotherhood and unity" and under essentially, false internationalism.

Yugoslav communists remained consistent to the strategy of the communist international to indulge the extreme nationalism of "small nations". In practice, the Albanian political oligarchy carried on ethnic cleansing in Kosovo and Metohija on a daily basis and prepared the terrain to join the future Greater Albania, and in all of this it used all the means of state government (police, education, judiciary system, cultural institutions) which in this part of Serbia were totally in the hands of Albanians. Albanians as a national minority in Serbia had their Academy of Science in Pristina (probably the unique example for a minority in the world), a University with classes in the Albanian language and numerous other institutions. They abused this maximum possible framework of autonomy obove all European standards and used the total power theu had to indocrtinate the Albanian population and particularly young people with the Greater Albanian national ideology.

The Greater Albanian chauvinist propaganda achieved its greatest success in the period 1975-1980, after the adoption of the federal Yugoslav Constitution in 1974, which gave the provinces in Serbia attributes of statehood and federal constituency. In practice there was no border between Yugoslavia and Albania. At the time when Stalinism was at its peak in Tirana, inspiring incredibly fanatic ideology of hatred towards Serbs, delegations from the Albanian capital come to Kosovo and Metohija almost every day. A lach of any freedom and democracy in Albania was augmented with regressive ideology of entice cleansing of Serbs in Old Serbia and pseudo-academic production. In the period from 1975 to 1980 (according to still incomplete data) 237 professors and teachers from Albania held lectures at the University in Pristina and other schools in Kosovo and Metohija (among them was the current president of Albania, Mejdani); 62 professors and teachers from this Serbian province spent a period of time in Albania, and 62 came from Albania to Pristina. More than 20% of all textbooks used in schools in Kosovo and Metohija, particularly those on social studies, were imported from Albania.21

Together with the processes of stifling Serbian and Slav enclaves in Albania, the same was done in Kosovo and Metohija. In the 70's the albanological institute composed lists of names which would substitute the existing Serbian and Slav names in order to hide the etnic origin of these settlements.22 Until the beginning of the 80's the Albanians in Kosovo and Metohija had several scientific magazines, such as Gjurmime Albanologjike, and 10 other publications of general interest in Albanian: Rilindja (daily paper with the circulation of over 100.000 in 1979), Zani I rinis, Jeta e re, Pioneri, Perparimi, Shendeti, Fjala, Bata e re, Skendija, Bat. However, they used all these publications to disseminate national hatred, instead of the spirit of tolerance, understanding and cherishing of civilized relations with other peoples. The paradox of the whole situation lies in the fact that the Albanians in Kosovo and Metohija, who claim to have been systematically repressed and pursued for centuries, have reached such a level of development precisely in Serbia, that today Pristina instead of Tirana wants to play the role of main crator of a Greater Albania.

"Greater Albania" with the leading idea "all Albanians in one state" represents not only a belated example of the national romanticism of the 19th century, but also questions existing internationally recognized borders, jeopardizes stability in the whole of Southeast Europe and threatens to cause a new, third Balkan war. The ambition to set up an ethnically pure Greater Albania at any cost represents an even greater anachronism. The Albanian political and intellectual elite obviously suffer from a large deficiency of European logic.


FOOTNOTES:
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1. A recently published book by dr Djordje Borozan Great Albania is the first serious work dealing with this problem

2. Jean Larmeroux, La politique exterieure de l'Autiche/Hongrie 1875-1914, t.l, Paris 1918, p.231; Frederic Gilbert lens pazs d'Albanie et leur historire, Paris 1914, pp. 275-283.

3. Archives du Ministere des Affaires etrangers (Paris), Correspondance politique (AAE) Salonique, t.5, No 3, 22. VII 1878.

4. Georg Studtmuller, Forschungen zur albanische fruhgeschichte, zweite erweiterte auflage, Albanische Forschungen 2, Wiesbaden 1966, 167, 173.

5. Bernard Stulli, Albansko pitanje (1875-1882), A work of Yugoslav Academy of sciences and arts, book 318, Zagreb 1959, 325.

6. Dr Joseph Muller, Albanien, Rumelien und die osterreichische-montenegrische Granzei, Prague 1844.

7. Bernard Stulli, op.cit, 323.

8. L. Gersin, Altserbien und die albanische Frage, Wien 1912, 29.

9. Ekrem Bey Vlora, Lebenserinnerungen, Band I, (1885 to 1912), Munchen 1968, 275.

10. Ekrem Bey Vlora, Die Wahrheit uber das Vorgehen der Jungturken in Albanien, Wien 1911, 43.

11. Nicolas C. Pano The People's Republic of Albania, Baltiomore 1968, 27 (note 30).

12. Giovanni Zamboni, Musslinis Expansionpolitik auf dem Balkan, Hamburg 1970, 313 (note 25).

13. Quotation from> Dimitrije Bogdanovic, A Book About Kosovo, Belgrade 1990, pp. 248-249.

14. Serge Kriyman, Maps of Yugoslavia at War, Massacre of the innocent Serbian population, committed in Yugoslavia by the Axis and its Satellite from April 1941 to August 1942, Washington 1943.

15. A memory book of orthodox priests – victims of fascist terror and those who died in national-liberation struggle, Beggared, 1961, p. 117.

16. Hermann Neubacher, Sonderauftrag Sudost 1940-1945, Gotingen 1953, p. 116.

17. Bulgaria Nepriyajet Protivnik na Tretijah Rajh, The Ministry of Defence – The National Center of Military History, Sofia 1995, 196.

18. The decision of the National Committee for Yugoslav Liberation, Temporary Prohibition of the Return of Colonists to Their Previous Places of Residence, Sluzbeni List Demokratske Federativne Jugoslavije. No. 13, 16th March 1945.

19. The Law on revision of Land Allotment to Colonists and Farming Applicants in Macedonia and in the Kosovo Metohija region. Sluzbeni List Demokratske Federativne Jugoslavije No. 56, 5th August 1945.

20. The Law on revision of Land Allotment to Colonists and Farming Applicants in the national Republic of Macedonia and the Autonomous province of Kosovo and Metohija. Sluzbeni List Federativne Narodne Republike Jugoslavije No. 89, 5th Nov. 1946.

21. Jens Reuter, Das Kosovo-Problem im Kontext der jugoslawisch-albanischen Beyiehungen, in: Albanien im Umbruch, Munchen 1990, p.88.

22. Bogumil Hrabak, Sirenje arbanskih stocara na ravnicama I slovenski ratari srednjovekovne Albanije, in: Stanovnistvo slovenskog porijekla u Albaniji, Titograd, 1991, p. 115.

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