From 1998 to 1999, war raged in Kosovo, and 13,000 people, most of them ethnic Albanians, were killed. Thousands were raped, and well over a million displaced from their homes. In response, President Bill Clinton led the NATO airstrikes that targeted Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic’s military, bringing an end to the conflict.
The above is a simplified summary of a complex conflict, but I want to get quickly to my point: Kosovo, which celebrated ten years of independence earlier this year, is now the most pro-American country in the world, and if you ever want to hang out beneath a statue of Bill Clinton in the Balkans, you can do that on Bill Clinton Boulevard in Kosovo’s capital, Pristina. You can also listen to Armend Miftari’s song “Thank You USA,” which has lines like, “Thank you USA/you are my best friend/you are the peacekeeper/you are the legend.”
Speaking of American presidents, so much of the American media’s attention goes to Trump these days that other significant matters around the world are given little light. This includes events in Kosovo. Give it a Google search sometime, or check out one of the links below.
THINGS MENTIONED OR RELATED:
- BBC country profile of Kosovo
- “Kosovo’s American Obsession” in Time (it’s a great photo essay)
- “Kosovo Finds Little to Celebrate After 10 Years of Independence” (New York Times – February 15, 2018)
- “Tiny nation of Kosovo has air pollution so bad that it rivals Beijing” (USA Today – March 28, 2018)
- Kosovo If Trump Wins (a website encouraging you to live in Kosovo)