Kosovo: A Test for U.S. Strategy in Global Forecast: the Top Security Challenges of 2008
November 14, 2007
During two decades of intense conflict between Serbs and Albanians over Kosovo, the disputed territory has also assumed strategic significance for Washington. The United States has invested substantial diplomatic, political, and military capital in the region and mobilized NATO in its first combat operation and subsequent peacekeeping mission. Moreover, the outcome of decisions on Kosovo’s final status will have long-term implications for America’s relations with both allies and adversaries.
The chasm between Prishtina (the capital of Kosovo) and Belgrade cannot be bridged through negotiations. While the former remains adamant about independence, the latter will not surrender its sovereignty over the territory. More than 90 percent of Kosovo’s population support independence, while the democratically elected government in Prishtina points out that Serbia de facto lost the territory when it attempted to slaughter and expel two million Albanians and was ousted from Kosovo by NATO forces in 1999.
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