U.S. and Canadian forces, along with other NATO nations, remain in the Balkans 22 years after former President Bill Clinton began America's military involvement there.
The U.S. Department of State boasts that Clinton’s intervention in the Balkans was one of his first major decisions after his 1993 election. (The United Nations had been meddling in the Balkans without the U.S. prior to that.)
NATO eventually become involved and established a permanent presence in Kosovo in 1999, with the start of the Kosovo Force (KFOR) mission. And while the State Department apparently thinks U.S. and NATO intervention and occupation have been good things, they actually have been disastrous.
The intervention in the Balkans—on behalf of Muslims and against Christians—helped provide Islamic terrorists with valuable training and recruitment opportunities, making them stronger than ever when they launched the next phase of their global jihad on September 11, 2001.
This, of course, is irrelevant to many people. In fact, that NATO helped Islamic terrorists by deploying forces to the Balkans was ignored then and now. The West effectively fought (and still fights) for Islam in Afghanistan and Iraq. It did the same in the Balkans. And just like in Afghanistan and Iraq, Muslims hate the West all the more for it.
NATO also failed to bring peace to the Balkans. Major unrest and violence stemming from continuing ethnic tensions regularly occur in the Balkans as a whole. Unrest and violence even occur in Kosovo where NATO remains, and KFOR troops sometimes become involved in the violence (gunfire wounded KFOR troops as recently as 2012) or they have to respond to it. Yet there are no complaints about this failure even as there are constant complaints about the lack of peace in Afghanistan and Iraq. There also are no demands for an exit from the Balkans.
Furthermore, there aren’t any politicians or pundits accusing NATO of being guilty of damaging the Balkans or bringing massive poverty on Kosovo. Nor are politicians and pundits accusing NATO of damaging its reputation due to its decision to invade and occupy the Balkans. People aren’t gnashing their teeth over NATO’s responsibility for tens of thousands of deaths during its military operations. Yet many on the left and right make the same accusations against the U.S. regarding the Iraq War.
On top of all this, KFOR troops are now wasting time in Kosovo fighting fires.
So why aren’t people crying about all the problems NATO created in the Balkans? Why aren’t they crying about all the money and KFOR troops being wasted there now? Where are the howls for an exit strategy? Why does everyone seem fine with an indefinite occupation of the Balkans, even as they flew into raving fits when anyone suggested the U.S. could remain in Iraq for generations?
The answer to all these questions is quite simple. A Democratic American president started the military intervention in the Balkans for reasons that weren’t vital to U.S., Canadian, or NATO interests: to defend Islamic people with the blessing of the United Nations. Therefore, the press, pundits, and government leaders have happily supported the intervention in and occupation of the Balkans for over a generation.
The lesson? U.S. and Western forces can remain deployed and occupy nations forever whenever they’re ordered to do so by a Democratic American president, and whenever they’re deployed in the interests of the United Nations and with no benefit to the West.
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