Lesson in democracy, hope for the future, and a historical chance
By Agim Aliçkaj, MSc
New York – On October 6th, the heroic people of Kosova, the people of the legendary statesman Ibrahim Rugova and of legendary hero Adem Jashari, passed an historic test. With their free vote, in a democratic manner, they overthrew a ruling political class, composed of failed and corrupt individuals including politicians who may have betrayed national cause.
This election should serve as a model for the entire region. First and foremost, it was a lesson to the outgoing government coalition that bad governance and irresponsible work will not be permitted and will be held accountable. Certainly, in their mind, they have done a good job and regard themselves as fiery patriots, however facts are proving otherwise.
If they hope to ever return to power, they must open their eyes wide, reflect and analyze their failures which brought the country to the brink of destruction. Their respective political parties should get rid of the bad officials and failed politicians. First, they should become a constructive opposition and cooperate with the new government on issues of national interest; they should develop and present a clear vision on what this country needs. Only then will they be ready to ask again for the confidence of the people in the next election. If not, they should leave politics forever, opening the way for those with adequate education and leadership skills, above all, to those who truly love their Albanian nation and the Republic of Kosova.
With this election, Kosova taught a lesson of democracy to the neighboring Albania, the Balkans, and many other countries of the world. They seem to have tacitly recognized it.
This is how you vote!
The vote of October 6th, in Kosova, proved to the US and democratic countries of Europe that the young republic is capable of holding free, fair, and transparent elections. The message to the world is: “We are ready to build and develop our free and democratic Republic of Kosova.” The turnout of under 50%.was a bit upsetting but doesn’t diminish the success shown by this electoral process and its outcome.
The election, this time, inspired real hope for a great change in foreign and domestic policies, in state-building and strengthening of the institutions, economic development and the prosperity of the people of Kosova.
Hope for a much better and secure future
This is a historic chance for the winners of this election: Self-Determination (VV) and Democratic League of Kosova (LDK). The people have trusted them with nothing more than brining a good responsible governance. A principled government coalition of national salvation should be formed as soon as possible through sincere and constructive talks, based on the respective number of votes. No doubt, this will be very challenging because dark outside forces and even within these parties are working against it. However, with a serious approach a compromise is possible. The basic formula for highest positions seems obvious: Albin Kurti as Prime Minister, Vjosa Osmani Deputy PM and Minister for Foreign Affairs. Eventually, if and when the law and the Constitution permits, it would be necessary to replace the current bad President of Kosova, possibly with Isa Mustafa. The latter is not without baggage, but he has shown some wisdom recently, saving LDK from a dangerous split. One thing should be clear to both parties: if after this election, they fail to form a coalition, they will be both blamed for the shameful shortcoming with catastrophic consequences for Kosova. They may remain in opposition forever, with the ugly stain of betrayal.
Serbia is no doubt “the sick country of Europe”, who has not changed from the time of Milosevic
The continued appeasement of Serbia is a huge mistake. Serbia should be treated as deserved, an aggressor who has started and shamefully lost four wars in the Balkans. There cannot be talks with Serbia, before certain conditions are met. Serbia has still to accept and apologize for the war crimes against humanity committed in Kosova; it should pay reparations for the damages caused by the war; and should reveal the locations where the bodies of the disappeared people have been buried. Above all, Serbia should recognize Kosova’s independence, proclaimed on February 17th 2008, in current borders, recognized by the United States and the democratic world, officially confirmed by the International Court of Justice in The Hague. No one in the world has the right to ask for or negotiate the independence of Kosova, negotiations have ended on February 17. This has been achieved with the blood of the best children of Kosova and the entire Albanian nation. Therefore, the independence is non-negotiable, untouchable and eternal. There could be talks with Serbia only about the relationship between two neighboring states, never about the internal affairs of Kosova. The economic sanctions against Serbia should be tied to its behavior toward Kosova. If it continues with its hostile and destructive actions, sanctions should not be abrogated or reduced, they should be increased.
The Serbian minority in Kosova is being manipulated and used by Serbia to act against Kosova as well as its own interests. It is important to permanently keep open the channels of communications and cooperation with legitimate representatives of the Serbian minority, about their political interests and human rights, working hard towards their full integration in Kosova’s society. These talks can be supervised by the international community. However there should never be talks with Serbian chauvinists and criminals, sponsored , trained and sent by Serbia. The rights of Serbian minority in Kosova, should be exactly the same as the rights of Albanians who live in their autochthonous lands in Presheva, Bujanovc and Medvegjë, nothing more or less.
Albanians expect from America and Europe justice, based on their democratic values and principles
Long-term strategic interests of the American and Albanian nations are fully compatible. It is important to demonstrate a great respect, sincere cooperation, tireless work, and strong arguments when dealing with US officials and representatives. Temporary situations which go against our views and interests should not discourage us. We should use them as motivation to work harder in our relationships between our countries, both in governmental level as well as in our lobbying activities in Washington.
Albania, is the painful but loving mother of Kosova and the entire Albanian nation
The Albanian people, throughout our ethnic territories have proven itself by providing unpresedented help to the people of Kosova during the dark years of Serbian oppression in the 1990s, especially during the war in 1999. This was a great natural moment of the national unity. Unfortunately, the political leadership of Albania has not been up to the task. Starting with the cruel, inhuman, antinational communist government of Enver Hoxha, who betrayed and worked against the interests of Kosova. Even so, at least they publicly raised their voice against the Serbian oppression. Sadly, those who rule Albania today not only they are not working for the interests of Kosova and Albanian people in other autochthonous territories, but they are openly flirting with the Serbs and are behaving like their servants. They failed to deliver prosperity to their own country. Their shortcomings were once again made obvious when they were denied again the start of membership talks by the European Union. There is hope however that the wind of freedom and the democratic change that were revived in Kosova will soon embrace Albania as well.
A part of media in Kosova, Albania and in other countries is openly serving the Serbian interests against Kosova and against the entire Albanian nation
It is heartbreaking to read and listen to the comments of some political analysts and the display of their ignorance, incompetence, shamelessness, and even flagrant treason. The lack of civility in debates is shocking. They talk over each-other, ignore replies and counterpoints, and resorting often to personal insults. Obviously, the question is: Have these people ever read or heard about the tradition and the order of conversation in the men’s room of our forefathers. In their times, they may have lacked education, but they took turns to express their views and when it came to criticize each-other they measured the words avoiding direct offense to their counterparts. Our people know who they are and should not be supported. They should be ignored and boycotted until their media platforms shade away.
The Albanian diaspora in America and in the world has played an extraordinary role in supporting Kosova and the Albanian nation
We should never forget the generous financial support for the families who suffered the oppression of Serbian occupation for: the education of their children, the democratic movement and political parties in all the countries where Albanians live. 3% from every salary set aside for the Government of Kosova. very successful and organized lobbying in Washington by the Albanian American Civic League under the professional leadership of Joseph and Shirley DioGuardi, the patriotic activity of Vatra Federation led by the uncompromising patriot and admirer of Kosova, the late Agim Karagjozi, the great contributions of other associations and organizations of our community, the sponsoring of the glorious KLA’s armament through the “Homeland Is Calling Fund” and through other channels, culminating with the glorious Battalion “Atlantiku” , the brave young people ready to give their lives for the freedom of their fatherland. It is a despairing fact that the governments of Kosova and Albania as well as other organizations in the Balkans have done so little to engage and respect the diaspora. Hollow statements of thankfulness and awarding certain individuals and organizations are not sufficient. Upcoming new governments are expected to make essential changes, so that the diaspora can invest with ease while helping the economic development of our countries, also facilitate their active participation in the democratic process. If all goes well after this election, the wonderful diaspora is ready to give a much larger support for our national causes. Yet, it must be understood that this is also a capable, mature, and well-informed diaspora, which will never support those parties, organizations or individuals who may be working against national interests.
Hopes and possibilities do exist for the great future of our nation, with two strong Albanian countries in Europe, in the permanent friendship with America, sovereign and prosperous, open to each-other and cooperating in every way and aspect of their lives, including the Albanian people representing an influential constitutive element in the neighboring Macedonia, as well as the Albanian people enjoying their full individual and national rights in their respective autochthonous lands in Eastern Kosova (Presheva, Bujanoc, Medvegja), Montenegro, and Chameria.