13 August 2011
Government Only Good for Surrendering
After they first objected to the Serbia-KFOR agreement that sanctifies a NATO-enforced economic quarantine of the north of Kosovo, the representatives of the affected communities met Tuesday to decide on whether to dismantle their roadblocks as called for by Belgrade anyway. They left without reaching a unified position. Since then, however, most of the roadblocks have gone down. Only one of them remains.
Defending the agreement Serbian government negotiators admitted the deal was "not ideal", which is putting it mildly, but insisted it was "the best [deal] possible under the circumstances". That is very much true, the circumstances being the negotiations for the Serbian side were conducted by a government that has long been looking to surrender Kosovo, albeit careful to do it in a way that would not cause its immediate and dramatic downfall from power.
The aspect of the deal that the Serbian government has been flaunting as its biggest positive is that NATO promises not to use force to unilaterally change the circumstances on the ground. No one in their right mind can take NATO seriously on this point, however, when the situation in force now is precisely the outcome of one-sided NATO action, and when Belgrade just signed under it.
The communities in the north of Kosovo elect their municipal officials under Serbian law and election schedule. It would be very difficult for these municipalities to ignore positions of the government of Serbia, when what they are struggling for is to remain a part of the constitutional order of Republic of Serbia. The government in Belgrade is not loathe to take advantage of this predicament of theirs.
The Serbs in the north of Kosovo were told that should they not abide by the Serbia-KFOR agreement official Belgrade would hang them out to dry. That would indeed put them in a tough spot, but it is hard to see that the present arrangement where the marionette government in Belgrade will sign under capitulations in their name is any better.