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Jamie Shea, Nato
"It will take time to overcome vestiges of civil war"
 real 28k

General Sir Michael Jackson
"There are bound to be differences of view"
 real 28k

Fred Dinsmore from Boston USA
"Clearly a Nato mission"
 real 28k

Kenneth Beddoe from London
"Bombs kill civilians - soldiers are well protected"
 real 28k

Robin Clarke from Tenerife, Spain
"How long will troops need to be in Kosovo?"
 real 28k

Olja Stojanovic from Gracanica, Kosovo
"It's not safe for Serbs to go anywhere in Kosovo"
 real 28k

Vesna Pilipovic from Novisad, Yugoslavia
"Milosevic who we voted against is now stronger than ever"
 real 28k

Agron Azemi from Pristins, Kosovo
"We need a judicial system"
 real 28k

Monday, 3 April, 2000, 11:59 GMT 12:59 UK
Kosovo: Is the West losing the peace?

Did the West go to war at great expense only to lose the peace for lack of resources? Is the international community doing enough to rebuild Kosovo? What is the future of the province? Are there any lessons to be learned from the conflict?

Former K-For commander General Sir Michael Jackson and Nato spokesman Jamie Shea took your questions in our live brodacast online and on BBC World Service radio.

Select the link below to watch Talking Point On Air

Read what you have said since the programme

Read and hear a reflection of your comments during the programme

Read what you said before we went ON AIR


Your comments since the programme:



There will be no peace in Kosovo, as long as KFOR remains a Nato-led enterprise.

Alam Navruzov, US
In order to bring and win peace in inter-ethnic conflicts, peacekeepers should be a neutral force. Unfortunately, this is not the case in Kosovo. Can we really talk about the neutrality of KFOR, which is dominated by the same countries who nearly wiped out Serbia on behalf of Kosovo Albanians. There will be no peace in Kosovo, as long as KFOR remains a Nato-led enterprise.
Alam Navruzov, US

This shows the absurdity of war. We spend millions waging war in the Balkans, now we are going to spend millions rebuilding it. Have we all lost the plot, or what?
Rob Beavan, UK

If Kosovo was so important to the Serbs how come they don't consist not even 10 percent of the population there. If it was so important to them, they would move from other parts of Serbia and would be settled in Kosovo to live. How is this possible? The answer is simple: through a PROPAGANDA WAR that builds hatred against other nations that live there. There is PEACE in Kosovo everybody knows it.
Besnik, Kosovo

I think Kosovo belongs to Yugoslavia and to the Serbian people, e.g. how would the people of UK or USA will feel if tomorrow, for example, the Mexican people declared California an independent State of Mexico
Charles, United States of America

Off the cuff I would say the only lesson to be learned by UN and Nato countries from Nato's fiasco is crudely but aptly put in the American phrase, "either put up or shut up". I strongly suggest that since an equitable balance of power never was and never will be the priority of the Nato countries and their justice is rife with hypocrisy and racism, let the next beleaguered people fight it out themselves and gain assistance from whoever provides it.
Tahir Nawab, NY, USA



Serbs staying true to their warrior tradition will retake what truthfully belongs to them.

Daniel Michaels, Sweden
As a history teacher, my comment must be; If people don't remember history they are damned to repeat it.
Considering that Kosovo (and Kosovo only not kosova or kosava) is the heart and cradle of the Serbian nation; a small peace of land that to them shares equal importance and value as does Jerusalem to the Jews, has been forcefully taken by others to give to them to whom it does not belong, be sure that the Serbs staying true to their warrior tradition will retake what truthfully belongs to them (with or without Milosevic in power it does not matter, they will still do it.).
Does it not concern people in the West that a land that the Albanians claim is their land bears no monuments or evidence of their so-called ancient culture.
Daniel Michaels, Sweden

Nato, USA and the European countries didn't make any mistakes so far. They are going to make a mistake if they do not recognise the independence for Kosovo. Independence for Kosovo may not be the best solution for everyone but it is the best solution for most of the people of Kosova.
Isn't the will of the majority that is the basic principle of democracy as a system? The longer we wait to make Kosova independent the higher the risk that the Albanians will look towards an United Albania and the Serbs will look towards a partition of Kosovo. The world has to resolve the Kosovo problem once and for all.
Luan L, USA

The population ratio between Serbs and Albanians was 50:50 just after the WWII Just before Nato involvement it was 93% of Albanians and 7% of Serbs. Who is the aggressor and who is the victim?
Nick Lekich, Canada



Let the West complete their moral obligation and support an independent Kosovo.

Bill, USA
An independent state of Kosovo is the solution. If the butchers of Kosovo could not live with the Albanians, let the Albanians live in peace and let them have their lands governed by them. The Serbs had proven their atrocity, and the west did put them in their place. Let the West complete their moral obligation and support an independent Kosovo.
Bill, USA

After witnessing the turmoil and lack of peace in Kosovo, I must ask what did you expect to happen. Nato's campaign of only air bombardments was only going to leave thousands of innocents slaughtered on the ground. It is well known by even the most simple-minded military analyst that no campaign can be won from the air only.
Nato's bombing was without any real conviction, as very little Serb units suffered. The only suffering came from the innocent Kosovan Muslims, just as the Bosnian Muslims suffered when the world imposed an arms embargo on them when they were being slaughtered by Europe's third biggest army.
Steven Walker, England

I am concerned how some people can be so short-sighted by claiming that Nato lost the peace in Kosova. War in Kosova has been won in a very fair way and there should be some more attempts to rebuild everything from the scratch there.
It is the time to offer as much aid as possible for building the long waited peace in Kosova. Intervention in Kosova has shown that this can lead to great results like returning around one million refugees to Kosova.
Fisnik Kepuska, UK



How could Nato not fail at the peace when it so clearly failed in war?

Dr. G. Shaw, Canada
How could Nato not fail at the peace when it so clearly failed in war? As an Israeli Colonel stated: "Nato against nothing!" The Serbs completely outfoxed Nato's hi-tech weapons with lo-tech camouflage. As far as the peace goes: what did the Americans learn from their defeat in Vietnam? Obviously, absolutely nothing! For, they should have learned that you simply cannot forge political stability and/or peace if you do not have a government that has political legitimacy.
Dr. G. Shaw, Canada

Nato aggression in Yugoslavia is crime before humanity.
Ieronimus, Russia

Talking Point - On Air
All was good before Nato, EU and new world order creators put their hands in Balkans. Life here is very poor, high level nationalism and negative vibrations. I don't want to an instrument of power. I want only to live a normal life, and the way to make this is that if Nato gets out off the Balkans. We alone (former SFRJ) will make our relations better. Powers destroyed Yugoslavia and want to make mini-quasi-states which will be for their interests. Nato bombing is one of actions linked with this, and my feeling is that Nato will not stop until they destroy Serbia (with Montenegro) and make of it small marionette state.
Igor Miljkovic, Republic of Srpska (Bosnia)

We've all, I believe, witnessed Bill Clinton's lying on MANY occasions...And many times he has been proven a liar...
How long will the "rest" of the, I dare say, INDEPENDENT AND FREE World have to pay for the naivety and gullibleness of the American public?
Can the American public do ANYTHING to restore control of its own media and stop them from lying to its own people and abusing them and their support and THEIR hard-earned taxpayer money for impoverishing other nations and wreaking havoc all over the world for the selfish and short-sighted interests of the few in REAL power?
Ivan Stevanovic, Yugoslavia

Mr Shea, why is it that you and the British Government describe the Serbian President as a war criminal and murderer yet, you shake hands with Mr Putin who has murdered men women and children in Chetinya. Is this human rights hypocricy?
Philip Browne, Australia



Nato's short-sighted intervention in the Balkans seems to have created a dangerous precedent.

Anoush Gesarentz
Nato's undeclared war on Serbia has been a catastrophic error both in terms of loss of human lives and pollution from bombed oil refineries and the use of depleted uranium bombs.
The on-going rapes, murders and general terrorism committed by Albanian separatists against the elderly Serbs in Kosovo can be compared to the treatment of Jews in Nazi Germany. At Nato's admission, Nato lacks the means to curb atrocities against minorities in present day Kosovo.
Nato's short-sighted intervention in the Balkans seems to have created a dangerous precedent. Who can now be surprised if China invades and occupies Taiwan?
Anoush Gesarentz

People in the Balkans need a role model on how to treat their ethnic minorities. Since Greece is a member of both Nato and the EU, can its treatment of its ethnic Macedonian minority serve as a model for other Balkan countries?
Peter Stajov, Canada

Jamie, your perceived understanding of democracy is a hypocrisy, you claim Mr Milosevic is a dictator and yet you acknowledge there are elections and he does win them. Kosovo has been Serbian for over a millennia and has been taken by force many a time and yet been reunited with its rightful owner. There will never be peace until the cradle of Serbian culture is returned.
Micheal Sibic, Australia



Why is nothing being done to stop ethnic Albanian terrorists crossing the Kosovo border?

Mirko Lazarevic, England
Why is nothing being done to stop ethnic Albanian terrorists crossing the Kosovo border - now controlled by Nato (probably trained by the CIA as with the KLA last year) - and attacking Serbia to further destabilise the region? Or are you going to blame the Belgrade regime in a few months when the crisis goes out of control and then start bombing Serbia again?
Mirko Lazarevic, England

Thanks very much for the informative programme. I've always found Jamie Shea a master of restraint for the sometimes very provocative and emotive questions. Not a job to envy regardless of the pay... The wave gave a nice personal touch. Isn't technology scary sometimes?
Peter Kordas, Australia

Return to the top of the page


Your comments and questions during the programme:



There was equal propaganda on both sides during the conflict

Dr Andrew Moore, Cyprus
Can Mr Shea try and convince me that the Nato strike on the Serbian News Agency, populated entirely by civilians, was ABSOLUTELY NECESSARY? There was equal propaganda on both sides during the conflict and to argue that the bombing of the Serbian news agency was a necessity is, to be quite honest, ridiculous and offensive.
Dr Andrew Moore, Cyprus

It is interesting to note it's unlikely Nato commanders will not be prosecuted, which seem fair. The general never answered the issue of compensation for the injured innocent. The fact that Milosevic is still in power does not mean those people should be condemned to whatever fate they suffer by collateral damage.
Ultimately, what was the motive for the intervention? Have the goals been met, what is left to do and how long and how much money will it take. The traditional role of Nato has changed now. Where are the new lines to be drawn in the near future?
Martin Lawson, Canada

The politics and war of Russia in Chechnya now is not better (in the sense of human rights) than of Serbia in Kosovo. Why hasn't Nato bombed Moscow? Is Russia too big? Do you have double standards for small and big countries?
Ansis, Riga, Latvia



The majority of the terrorism of the Kosovo Albanians by Serbs came after the Nato bombing started.

Michael Sestak, USA
So many people are needed to keep the peace. The majority of the terrorism of the Kosovo Albanians by Serbs came after the Nato bombing started. Maybe it would have been better to send in all those peace keepers in the first place, instead of pulling out what few were there before the bombing.
Is it possible fewer people would have been killed on all sides if the UN and the countries that supported the autonomy of Kosovo had sent in people in the first place?
Michael Sestak, USA

We watched the Serbian military pull out of Kosovo with their military hardware almost intact. Do you think that Nato have been duped by the Serbs by putting decoys at important sites for the Nato planes to bomb?
M.M. Afrah, Canada

Is there any kind of organised pro-reconciliation propaganda in Kosovo? Is there a support for democratic media, that spread the ideas of living together and also the violence monopoly for the state organs as element of a modern society?
Are there any grass root-reconciliation initiatives, e.g. political parties, that can be and are strengthened? Are there any measures to create an atmosphere of disapproval for individual revenge?
Dominik Lenné, Berlin



I began to suspect that each so-called mistake might have been more of a strategic action.

Trish McDonald, Australia
In the beginning of Nato activity in Kosovo I believed that the reason for intervention was resultant from lessons learned previously in the Serbian region - in that it had to be stopped for humanitarian reasons, and that the conflagration might spread to Montenegro and Albania and beyond. But more and more nothing seemed to quite as portrayed.
I began to suspect that each so-called mistake might have been more of a strategic action, that needed to be portrayed less than completely honestly. Tonight it was pointed out that the targeting of the journalists was a legitimate action because of their propaganda role. What I'm wondering then is just how much does the media and/or public opinion dictate the progress of the war. It seems to me that Milosevic, Karadich and Vladich etc were not impossible targets and that their martyrdom wouldn't have affected the eventual outcome of the war, so why are they also not legitimate targets of war?
Trish McDonald, Australia

Hi! I am enjoying the programme and feel sad for the apparent unending to each side's inability to let go of their histories. I guess if I was living there I may see things differently.
Peter Kordas, Australia



I ask you to consider the parents that lost their children in your bombing campaign.

Koviljka Trivalic, Australia
I am glad to hear that you finally have some quality time to spend with your son at the cinema but I ask you to consider the parents that lost their children in your bombing campaign who will never take there children to the cinema who will never see them grow and who will never know why their child died.
I hope you consider these parents who lost their children every time you see your child do you finally acknowledge that a lot of innocent women and children died for your bombing campaign?
Koviljka Trivalic, Australia

May I first of all thank your organisation for bringing peace to Europe and the world, the safe heavens save the civilians in Bosnia, the bombing brought back the Albanians to Kosovo.
My questions, just why can't your organisation apply any of the above methods to war torn African countries. Are civilians there less human than the ones in the continent of Europe?
Lukong Edwin, Russia

What was the reasoning behind the use of the word "genocide" prior to and during Nao's actions in the former Yugoslavia? Considering the level of the killings, didn't Nato's dependence upon the term to stir emotions and gain support for its actions cheapen the word? Especially considering the West's reluctance to use the same term when killings on a much grander scale took place in Rwanda just a few years prior.
Jason Clampet, USA

Where are those resources now to work for peace, when there were no limits on the resources used previously to make war?
Why are no military force used against Albanian killers today when it was possible to use those massive bombing against Serbia previously?
Sven Ohlsson

Return to the top of the page


Your comments before we went ON AIR:

Disasters like Kosovo will become more frequent. US diplomacy consists of little more than threats and sermons.
Sinisa, Bermuda

These people have hated each other for hundreds of years, far longer than Arabs and Jews have been fighting. Any who expects them to kiss and makeup in a year isn't living in the real world. This take generations, not a couple years.
Victor Curran, Australia



Nato's laughable performance can at best be compared to the Key Stone Cops.

Tahir Nawab, USA
At the risk of sounding ungrateful, surely for Nato its intervention was a combined response to a sense of panic that Slobodan's mimicking of Saddam Hussein's transgressions would cause a conflagration in the area that would lead to an unacceptable imbalance of power and also by its pricking conscience, that once again as in Bosnia, it acted too late.
Hence to save face how about a show of force so that it would be recorded in the annals of history that the right and good Nato saved the skins of these hapless Muslims. The truth is that were it not for the terrible human tragedy in the massacre and mayhem of Muslims at the hands of the Serbians and Russians, Nato's laughable performance can at best be compared to the Key Stone Cops.
Tahir Nawab, USA

We have heard very little from the media throughout the long winter months as to the social and economic effects of the air raids launched on Yugoslavia a year ago. Whether this has been due to feelings of guilt or callous indifference is not clear. Maybe the effects were so devastating that public opinion would have turned against "us" had they been exposed.
Alternatively the results of the bombardment were overestimated and therefore not revealed as they would then have exposed an unacceptable military weakness. Whatever the truth of that maybe the meddling by the Americans and their allies in the Balkans has been an unqualified flop.
Louis Billerey, England



How can you ask people who lost up to 40 members of their family to just forget like nothing happened.

Eki, Kosova
I went to Kosova in January. While I was in UK like everyone else I was really appalled from the reports of revenge. When I was travelling in Kosova seeing all that destruction one thing became clear to me. It is not just simple like that, now Albanians are killing Serbs. I must say it is not true. I'm not saying that itdoesn't happen what I'm saying is that it is very different to what was going on before. That was a organised institutional terror.
Now it is more of individuals seeking justice for their loved ones. When it comes to justice I personally hold responsible UN. If they would do something about bringing the war criminals to justice I am sure that acts of "revenge" against Serbs would not take place. Instead of taking action they just are trumpeting on about a multicultural Kosova. I totally agree with that but how can you have such Kosova when criminals are still at large. How can you ask people who lost up to 40 members of their family to just forget like nothing happened.
Eki, Kosova

Nicholas Wright, you should read "Nineteen Eighty Four" by Orwell, have you ever heard of "Two Minutes Hate"? This is where people are driven to hate and violence by what they see on TV.
There is something I would like to ask you and all the people who think that Nato was right to destroy, beyond recognition, my beautiful country: How do you know Nato was right, is it because of what you saw on TV?
Ivan Kovanovic, England/Yugoslavia

There is no peace to lose-there has been no peace either before nor after NATO's bombardment.
Andrej, Russia

Isn't it the case that the current inter-ethnic conflict in Kosovo is the inevitable consequence of Nato's actions? The war was fought on the basis of upholding an ethnic division of the country (as witnessed in the alliance's support for the so-called Kosovo Liberation Army, and in its refusal to listen to those who warned that the KLA was as xenophobic as the Serbian forces in Kosovo). The Nato/KLA 'victory' has unleashed KLA and Albanian chauvinist attacks on Serbian civilians, it has made matters worse, not better.
Mark Brown, Scotland



When have we created peace by war in the world?

Jee, India
When have we created peace by war in the world? Every war, be for the right or wrong, results in causes for more wars. Why did NATO forget this before bombing Kosovo? Why did Serbs forget this before murdering innocent people, and now why do KLA, or Albanians are making the same mistakes? If they keep taking revenge then there is no guarantee that they will not be at the receiving end tomorrow.
Jee, India

In the aftermath of the Second World War in Europe, German civilians became the target of revenge attacks by recently liberated inmates of labour and concentration camps. Between 1944-47, around 2.1 million ethnic Germans died during flight or forced expulsion from central, eastern and southern Europe. However, few people have argued that such consequences outweighed the moral case for going to war against Germany.

If there's a legacy of bitterness between Albanian and Serb Kosovars, it's not because NATO bombed Serbia. It's because of what Serbia did to Albanians before, and during, the NATO intervention. To place the blame squarely on NATO is merely an attempt to excuse or deny that simple fact.
Henry Case, UK

NATO made the same mistake that has kept the Balkans unstable for centuries. Instead of acting neutrally to stop the violence, they chose local allies. Now the cycle of violence will continue as each side now has a whole raft of new reasons to take revenge against the other - and many of these reasons were caused by NATO.
Tom, UK

After one year passing by it is obvious that there still has not been any result and the Albanians are doing anything to raise tensions again at the Kosovo-Serbian Border. I have been asking myself for some weeks now if this is leading to a new even greater war with Nato ground forces and probably Russia. In my opinion this is only a question of time. No one can stop this development and some people even don´t want to stop it! So I keep on asking myself what were the real aims of last year´s bombing campaign? All the news has been manipulated by the West.
K. Mannker, Germany



Nato is not winning the peace, because it did not win the war. Milosevic backed down because his Russian supporters told him to

Richard, England
Nato is not winning the peace, because it did not win the war. Milosevic backed down because his Russian supporters told him to. The quid pro quo for Moscow was financial support from the West and a blind eye over Chechnya. Meanwhile, Milosevic is still there, the ethnic hatred is still there and there is no peace. The only military which could have worked would have been a land war, after which Milosevic would have been toppled. Since our leaders did not have the stomach or imagination for that, they should have confined themselves to diplomatic activity.
Richard, England

The solution to the misery in Kosovo is in the hands of the leaders in that region. There seems to be a battle for leadership which has divided Kosovo into small little groups, with different leaders. This is creating confusion and a circle of tension among different groups, who want political control. Nato and United Nations have done all they can. The rest is left with the people and the leaders themselves. Enough with Ethical cleansing, the world must unite and safe Kosovo before is too late. A year is a long time to allow such a terrible deed to continue.
KM, South Africa

Murder, torture and extortion: these are the extraordinary charges made against the UN's own Kosovo Protection Corps in a confidential United Nations report written for Secretary-General Kofi Annan. The 5,000-strong corps, funded by UN members including Britain, has a £30 million aid budget for Kosovo. It was set up to provide 'disaster response services'; instead, says the UN, it has been murdering and torturing people.

At the same time, international agencies fighting the drug trade are warning that Kosovo has become a "smugglers' paradise" supplying up to 40 per cent of the heroin sold in Europe and North America. Overall, what is the EU goal in Kosovo and Serbia? How this goal/objective is going to be achieved? Do we really have a policy? I feel sorry for Lieutenant-General Sir Michael Jackson, soldier and officer par excellence, left in a darkness of Kosovo to deal with Albright/Clark ego mania without having a clear mandate.
Adam Sikorsky, Canada/UK



Peace has no more chance in Kosovo since the West tried to stop Milosevic's ethnic cleansing policy with blind violence

Spyros Milinis, Greece
Peace has no more chance in Kosovo since the West tried to stop Milosevic's ethnic cleansing policy with blind violence. It's too late for regrets now, but its time to hump for stabilisation in this EUROPEAN area. If we had the moral right to get involved in this case, this right obliges us to contribute and insist on a permanent solution.
Spyros Milinis, Greece

USA finally began the first step of correcting the injustice act that Europe did to the Albanians. The global politics will continue the corrections of injustice done to the flattened nations. The only European country that corrected its mistakes is the U.K. This latest affirmations that the NATO is loosing the Peace in Kosovo are only the propaganda of serbian allies like Russia, Greece etc., (that did everything to stop the bombing and to let the ethinc cleansing continue). The latest issues in northern Mitrovica (the only region of crisis) are provoked by the Serbs loyal to the war criminal Milosevic. However, with the neutralisation of these criminals by the KFOR & UNMIK, the situation will calm down. So, this propaganda that "Nato is loosing the Peace" only serve the criminal - Yugoslav President Milosevic, and doesn't let the peace to continue in the Balkans region.
Illyria, New York

U.S involvement in Kosovo had nothing to do with saving Albanians. They wanted to see if the Russian bear had any teeth left.
Joe, United States

What was the objective of the war? If the objective was to destroy the economy, infrastructure and accidentally bomb innocent civilians then congratulations NATO mission accomplished. If it was to stop a civil war, by supporting ethnic Albanians, then NATO failed.
Micheal, Canada



Everybody here is working so that peace can prevail

Adem Sylejmani, Kosova
Well....bombing is not a solution off course, but seeing the situation there was no other solution. If you think that the peace is lost you are wrong. Everybody here is working so that peace can prevail. We Albanians are trying to build a life together in harmony in a free KOSOVA with Albanians, Serbs, Turks, Rommas, and others.
Adem Sylejmani, Kosova

Are you all missing something? The people make the peace. NATO went to stop the genocidal maniacs. NATO gave the opportunity of peace not to make peace themselves.
Matt, UK



The new concept of humanitarian intervention without regard to sovereignty of national borders is truly crimina

Peter Fredericks, USA
NATO is a Cold War relic and has been searching for a new reason for existence. The new concept of humanitarian intervention without regard to sovereignty of national borders is truly criminal. NATO's intervention has made the situation in Kosovo much worse than it was and now allows reverse ethnic cleansing of all non-Albanians. US foreign policy has been bankrupt for years with its stupid white-hat black-hat litmus test of anti or pro Communist governments. Taxpayers support a huge military bureaucracy in Brussels and within the US. Military contractors need such manufactured crises to provide the jobs in the war industry which politicians need to remain in power. $11 billions spent in former Yugoslavia by the US already. Just imagine what those huge funds could have done to modernise a formerly multi-cultural and multi-ethnic small East European country such as Yugoslavia was at it attempted to recover from decades of Communist rule after Tito's death and the end of the Cold War...
Peter Fredericks, USA



Peace keeping is only possible once peace making has succeeded.

Rosie, UK
The military arm of Nato did what it could to create peace in Kosovo. Inasmuch as the military is a tool of the political arena, and that 19 such political actors had to agree to a (coherent) policy to be carried out by the military, i.e. the removal of Serb military and police forces from Kosovo, Nato was successful in its policy making and mission, however, it never created a peace to lose.
Military force can only be used effectively against other identifiable military forces. Soldiers can be used to keep warring parties apart, but cannot and should not be expected to be policemen. Peace keeping is only possible once peace making has succeeded, and peace enforcing is practically impossible as it undoubtedly leads to charges of bias by one side or both.
Rosie, UK

Nato did not lose the peace simply because this battle is not over. K-for was a logic consequence of Allied Force. You can't seriously expect aeroplanes to solve the problems on the ground. You can't educate Serbs and Albanians to peace in just one year after centuries of hate.
The West has committed itself to create the peace, not to restore it. We should be proud of this. And a very short note to our American friends: don't ask Nato to leave Kosovo now, nor say that you regret the bombs. The Albanians are not "invading" your country, are they?
Cardiac, Italy



Time and time again Nato has intervened in solving local problems and left in its wake devastated economies and countries.

Mark, Germany
Time and time again Nato has intervened in solving local problems and left in its wake devastated economies and countries in a worse situation they were than before. Look at Bosnia, look at Iraq - no amount of military hardware has resolved these conflicts.
Gone are the days of complete annihilation leading to a total rebuild such as happened after the war. The policy now is to punish military dictators but leave them installed in office rather than allow these regions to find new leaders.
At the end of the day Milosevic has gone quiet but he can now justifiably say look I told you what the Albanians would do. He will again become the voice of reason in the region just like Saddam Hussein is a martyr to his people in Iraq.
Mark, Germany

Hmm, well Leka, if you are as you say a civil engineer then why do you not go back to Kosovo and help the rebuilding of your country? Is it because you've landed on your feet and wouldn't go back to Kosovo if they paid you? Believe me, the UK doesn't need civil engineers anywhere near as much as Kosovo.
A Smith, UK



People should accept that civilians get killed in wars - peace at any price is no peace at all!

Tricia, UK
The trouble is that people want, and expect, antiseptic wars, and believe all they are told about 'smart' weapons that only hit the designated targets. When civilians get killed they begin to lose their nerve. Nato was right to act, and Yes, there were hundreds of thousands of Kosovar Albanian refugees a good year before the bombing began - those who could get out did, we have plenty in England, some in my own town, who were here months before the bombing began.
People should accept that civilians get killed in wars - peace at any price is no peace at all! If we'd done the job right in the first place, bombed the people on the bridges, bombed the cities, then 2 days would have seen the end of it and fewer people would have died, and we wouldn't now be in the state we're in.
Tricia, UK

Unfortunately Western Governments have the arrogance to believe that they can put right any injustice in the world. Once you believe you can do that and also have the moral right to intervene in anyone's problems, the use of armaments is not far away. An armed response usually makes things worse not better. Offer food, medicine and clothing to refugees; offer to mediate, offer money to rebuild or resettle, but never, never resort to armed conflict.
Anthony, England



It was poorly thought out campaign all together

Stephen Kenney, USA
Lose the peace? What peace? All I see is that due to our lack of attention now we are helping the Albanians do what the Serbs tried to do previously; have a ethnically pure Kosovo. Perhaps we did the region one greater disservice, we helped create a Greater Albania where such a nation would have never been possible without NATO. It was poorly thought out campaign all together, where the negative consequences will last decades to come and the positive intentions of the mission shall always be elusive.
Stephen Kenney, USA

Milosevic or not; birth-rate vs. birthright; Kosovo is a civil war that will happen with or without NATO. The West has much to learn about the Albanians.
Steve Bujenovic, USA



Bombing is never the solution but the birth of endless miseries.

Sulay Kemokai, USA
No peace can be achieved by bombs and guns. Peace can only be achieved from the hearts and minds of those who truly seek peace. Where in the world can you test your smart bombs and machinery? The bombs have fallen, but peace has yet to emerge from the ashes of those who perish in the inferno. Bombing is never the solution but the birth of endless miseries.
Sulay Kemokai, USA

NATO failed looking from all aspects, I feel ashamed that my country participated in aggression of sovereign country. Our tax money went to destroy civilian infrastructure for more then 10 million people in Yugoslavia. We spent tons of money helping Albanians. Now they are shooting at our soldiers. NATO has damaged relations with Russia and China beyond repair. NATO should get out soon as possible.
Alex, Canada

An interesting historical parallel: 'We had to destroy the province to save it.' This is suggested by the wording of your news bulletin. Meanwhile: the Serbian forces in Kosovo withdrew intact, ready for another go as soon as the UN, Nato and the alleged international community, like the Cheshire Cat, fade from the scene. And Milosovic remains at the helm of his government, as does Saddam Hussein, another well-bombed dictator. Not an unexpected state of affairs when great powers opt, once again, to carry out diplomacy through air power. A neo-colonial war, yet lacking the old rigour. War on the cheap.
James Bennett, Australia

NATO lost the peace by leaving Milosevic in power. He should have been taken in as a war criminal; the Serbs should been forced to agree to unconditional surrender.
Jeff, USA

Never has so much been spent, by so few, against the wishes of so many, with such a sad result. I am ashamed...
Curtis Peters, UK

How many times will we discuss this issue? Without a doubt: Europe would have been able to handle the situation one hundred times better WITHOUT the US. Europeans know a lot more than those naive Americans when it comes to diplomacy. Washington only worsened the situation.
AG, Greece

It is hard to describe war between civilians and Army, that is a nonsense. If "civilians" carry machine guns, canons and have air support from 19 most developed countries, "civilians" are de facto army. That was war between regular Yugoslav units and foreign funded and airs supported rebels/terrorists. That is the fact the rest is just propaganda.
KIKI, US



Congratulations Nato, you have won a war, but you have lost the peace.

Bob, Canada
Congratulations Nato, you have won a war, but you have lost the peace. We went to war to stop the killing of Kosovars, and now we sit and watch the Kosovars slaughter Serbs, Gypsies, and others. If this is the peace that we fought for, then we are the fools for doing so.
Bob, Canada

Nato lost the "peace" on March 24 1999. You can not claim to be fighting for peace bombing civilians inside unprotected cities with unimaginable cruelty and cynicism. Nato did not win the war either. Considering that there were no refugees prior to the bombing the only Nato shining achievement - return of Albanians now looks pretty tarnished. Nato's cowards in the face of adversity render them losers in both war and peace.
Will Kaploun, Australia.

NATO is not seeking peace or justice in Kosovo, but is experimenting militarily for the first time after WW2. It is also taking control of the Balkan region because it wants to control the major trade land route that connects Europe with Asia and Africa. US stated that they are looking for their own interests in the region. They are not concerned for either the Albanian or the Serbian population. If they were they would not have left both to suffer as they do. US is looking for an opportunity to take complete control of Serbia.
S. Krstevski, Canada

Correction - Jack Dawson wrote that the Kosovan refugees in Britain are claiming free benefits and housing. Well for your information Jack, I am a Kosovan refugee in the UK, I work as a civil engineer, I design Hospitals and Schools in the UK, and I pay approx. £700 in taxes every month. So god forbid, anything happens to you tomorrow, early retirement, redundancy, or an injury or whatever, don't worry I will still be paying my tax for benefits that you will receive. I would suggest a very endeavouring task for you, Get a life.
Leka, UK

The UK as usual leads the rest of the world, except for our American friends, are we the only countries who are prepared to provide so much to Kosovo? I say pull out our troops and let them sort it out. Britain's defence is hard pushed as it is now what with all the Labour Governments' defence cuts in the last 3 years or so.
Mark R Richards, United Kingdom



Yugoslavia has been a forced marriage, whose partners have all wanted to divorce themselves from the dominating Serbs.

Nicholas Wright, EU & US
Yugoslavia has been a forced marriage, whose partners have all wanted to divorce themselves from the dominating Serbs. Serbia did not want Yugoslavia to break up because Serbs wanted to create a greater Serbia, with all partners under her dominance. Serbia resisted democracy and the rights to self-determination with 4 wars and many hundreds of thousands dead. The world is unstable enough for the blood that has spilled and the hatred that has fermented in the Balkans to spill over into a wider conflict. The world is dangerous enough to encourage those who may wish to follow Serbia's example. NATO fought against these forces that Serbia's actions empowered, and punished the perpetrator. NATO didn't root out the cause nor extinguish the flames (as can be seen in Kosovo, Montenegro and some of today's comments) but nonetheless the flames have been dampened and contained. A smouldering house is better than a burnt city after all. NATO has served us better than you care to understand!
Nicholas Wright, EU & US

As we all read, the Rambouillet talks were 'designed to fail'. And the two additional terms that made Milosevic say 'no' were the allowance of NATO forces in the entire Yugoslavia and the referendum within three years with the question of autonomy. However, the settlement after the bombing involves UN and NATO forces, no allowance to enter Serbia, and agreement that no referendum with the question of autonomy is to be made. Your readers may conclude weather that massive bombing was worth it, or weather it was a 'convincing victory'.
Andreas Stalidis, UK

I feel the need to respond to the abuse that NATO has to suffer. If Milosevic had not forced NATO to bomb Serbian civilians back to the stone age then most of the current problems would not exist. No one can blame Britain and the US for acting while the rest would stand by and let the horror of Bosnia happen again. The blame for the systematic eviction and mass murder of ethnic Albanians can be levelled at Milosevic and the Serbian government alone. The reality is Serbia tried to eradicate Kosovan Albanians on a scale not seen since World War 2. NATO went to war and casualties are part of war. We did what was right and I hope the short-sightedness of some critics does not stop us acting in the future.
M. English, UK



Anything NATO does will only ever be a costly temporary measure.

Jack Dawson, England
Anything NATO does will only ever be a costly temporary measure. In the meantime the fallout is a mass exodus to Britain to claim free housing and benefits and thousands of troops and equipment from the civilised nations of this planet are tied up trying to keep them apart.
Jack Dawson, England

I agree totally with Eddie, USA. The Western politicians' wimped out, when it was crying out for the job to be finished i.e. by taking out Milsoevic and Saddam. With the regimes still in power, what did they think they were going to achieve. Thank god that the politicians who were controlling World War 2 did not wimp out in going after Hitler. Imagine where we would be if that was the case now.
ND, England



Let the Yugoslav army back, give money for economic reconstruction for the damage we've caused there and leave the place alone.

George, United Kingdom
It seems quite clear that the only people who knew how to deal with the clan warfare and tribalism of the Albanian population in Kosovo were the Serbs. One only has to compare Kosovo to Albania (prior to NATO intervention) to realise that the Albanians were infinitely better off in terms of money, health, education, law and order, freedom of expression and all other basic human rights. Add years of Western sanctions, a CIA-sponsored terrorist movement and a bombing campaign and look what we're left with! Let the Yugoslav army back, give money for economic reconstruction for the damage we've caused there and leave the place alone. I fear that in thirty or forty years time we'll wish we'd done so.
George, United Kingdom

The Serbs at first looked more likely than the Albanians to agree to a plan for self-government. But they dug in their heels on the Nato-led implementation force. The military text allowed Nato forces freedom of movement not only in Kosovo but throughout Serbia. So much for NATO honesty.
Svetlana Cakarevic, MD,



If you think things are messy now, just wait a couple of months. You ain't seen nothing yet.

NM, UK
NATO bombed hospitals, schools and municipal power stations killing at least 79 children and several hundred adults and wounding thousands in the process, a number the IRA only achieved after a few years of aggression. 250,000 non-Albanians have been ethnically cleansed out of Kosovo with NATO approval. KLA offshoots are springing up to provoke more trouble and only yesterday a UN human rights envoy called Kosovo a "paradise for mafias". Western politicians believed Milosevic would capitulate within hours of bombing. They did not think the situation through and saw the action as easy political capital. Recent information (such as the BBC documentary) demonstrated that Western governments actually wanted a conflict with Milosevic. They should be prosecuted for their blind ignorance. If you think things are messy now, just wait a couple of months. You ain't seen nothing yet.
NM, UK

Trying to police Kosovo by forcing people who have some much hate for each other is and will never work. The only way for peace is if NATO breaks Kosovo up and they know that. Only thing is that they can't do it because as a western power, they cannot be seen to promote racism, can they?
Sue, Germany

What peace? Just because the killing slows down a little you call that peace?
Richard T. Ketchum, USA

Instead of the Serb gangs terrorising the Kosava Albanians, as was happening before, now, under Nato cover, Kosava Albanians wreak revenge on the Serbs. Kosava needed a political solution; Nato has provided a sort of military answer; but, it is a fragile peace, unlikely to last.
Mohan Singh, India



What NATO did in Kosova should have also been done in the three republics to the north, and maybe it never would have come to this

Robert, Canada
There really was never a question of whether peace would be lost in this NATO action. There was no peace to begin with - there has not been peace for two decades. The goal was not peace, but justice. What NATO did in Kosova should have also been done in the three republics to the north, and maybe it never would have come to this.

Absolutely all of Serbia's "partners" in Yugoslavia chose to leave this dysfunctional marriage of convenience because of economic, cultural and political oppression from Belgrade. No republic in former Yugoslavia was unaffected by the Serbian army (under the guise of the Yugoslav Army), and I commend NATO for what they have done. My only criticism is that they did not completely destroy the murderous military machine which, by the way, the victim states of Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia paid for through federal taxes.

I do not see peace in Kosova in the near future. Nor, for that matter, in Bosnia. Until the Serbian nation admits mea culpa there is unlikely to be much peace with their neighbours. One cannot have peace without justice, and the Serbian government, in its entirety, and its military must face this. The Serbian nation must come to terms with the crimes committed in their name, and only then will there be potential for peace.
Robert, Canada



We can stop the Serbians from using their army against civilians, but we can't stop the civilians from killing each other

Dave, USA
Nato took on an impossible task when it tried to bring peace to Kosovo. These people hate each other and until they can give up their hate nothing is going to solve this situation. No amount of money or commitment of lives by Nato can change what is going on. We can stop the Serbians from using their army against civilians, but we can't stop the civilians from killing each other. Nato needs to pull out of the towns and cities, prevent the Serbs from using their army, but other than that let them sort this out by themselves. We can't prevent these folks from killing each other, there is no reason to risk our people to protect people that are just as happy killing each other.
Dave, USA

The war in Yugoslavia was a disaster to start with. No surprise that a year afterwards, things are no better. If the Kosovo Albainians who NATO was trying to help now wants to fight the Serbs again, then maybe the West should just pull out completely and just let them all get on with it.
Gary Holcombe, UK

It's bizarre to see the NATO media pretending concern about the catastrophic situation in Kosovo under NATO occupation. The expulsion of non-Albanian minorities from the province was, after all, deliberate NATO policy. They knew that fighting as the KLA air force, and then arming and legalising the KLA as the "Kosovo Protection Force", would enable the Albanian separatists to follow their well-known and long-term policies of ethnic cleansing and Kosovo independence. NATO made that choice because it furthered their real political agenda: to crush Yugoslavia as the last opposition government within the borders of the enlarged NATO empire in the east.

Until NATO changes its policy, disarms the KLA, allows the Serbs and others to return, lifts sanctions on Yugoslavia, helps the hundreds of thousands of refugees there, and pays for the damage from their criminal aggression, their alleged humanitarianism isn't credible. NATO world empire or humanitarian international law: it's got to be one or the other.
Brendan Tuohy, Aotearoa/NZ

It was folly from the beginning and anyone familiar with the history of the area knows it. It was a cause that was no business of the western powers, and certainly not a matter to change NATO from a defensive pact into an aggressor and world police force.

This exercise in stupidity, hatched out by Bill Clinton and Tony Blair-two renowned military strategists, only wasted the recourses of the west, while killing innocent civilians in the former Yugoslavia, and destroying their country in the process. Clinton and Blair have a lot to answer for in this war.
Jim, USA

Nato went to war for US interests. There was nothing humanitarian about it. Nato has not fulfilled even one of the clauses in the peace agreement. It has not disarmed the KLA so that today almost all non-Albanians have been cleansed from Kosovo. NATO's crime ie that it did nothing to prevent this KLA terror against non-Albanians. Kosovo is a lawless land. Today, the situation is worse than it was before the bombing. Nato is in Kosovo to take this land from Serbs and hand it over to Albanians. Nato should be disbanded because it no longer is an honourable entity.
J. Ivancevic, Canada

If everyone in that country could just put aside their differences and work for a better world around them NATO wouldn't have to intervene at all and there would be no rebuilding to do.
Stephen, USA

The USA and the world should have stayed out of Kosovo. You don't see the USA getting involved in the British and Irish mess. Kosovo is an internal affair. It belongs in Yugoslavia and always will. The USA should mind its own business. Yugoslavia is trying to keep order in a province that does not respect laws. Serbs are now being kicked out and killed what is Nato doing about that? They're helping the Albanians move and kill Serbian people. Serbs stood side by side with the free world through two World Wars and this is how they repay them.
Mike, Canada



The region needs additional resources and troops, and that need is only going to get worse as we delay and ponder

Dr Riz Rahim, USA
Kosovo is a monument to Western reluctance and lack of will: reluctant to get involved which allowed the Serbs to intensify their ethnic cleansing of the Kosovar Albanians, and now apparently not quite prepared to enforce and keep the peace. Last year's victims have become today's perpetrators. Revenge, NOT peace, seems to be the predominant motive.

It will be ironic to see what NATO achieved after such an effort whittled away right before our eyes. The region needs additional resources and troops, and that need is only going to get worse as we delay and ponder. To expect that we'll ever see a multi-ethnic society there is naive. The only practical solution lies in partition of the province along the ethnic lines. Ethnic hatred is too intense and deep-seated to let any other option survive for long. It is difficult, as we have learned in Bosnia, but all other available options are fraught with danger, now or later.
Dr Riz Rahim, USA

The era of using force is gone. When the international community is trying to solve a problem it must try to use common sense and dialog rather than using military actions. Unfortunately this is what is been happening more and more under mandates of UN or NATO. The international community has destroyed Kosovo, Iraq etc. These actions not only have failed to solve the problems but also have created lot of misery for the innocent people. Those who order these attacks are committing crime against humanity and must stop meddling.
N. Nehzat

You always lose when you don't finish the job. The job should have been to take Milosevic out, just has it should have been to take out Saddam. The problem with the World is politicians.
Eddie, USA



If the world wants peace in Kosovo, then the NATO countries must look to themselves. Selective justice simply will not work

M. Gordon, Australia
If the world wants peace in Kosovo, then the NATO countries must look to themselves. Selective justice simply will not work. When the person or persons who authorised the bombing of the Belgrade television station is put before the Hague War Crimes Tribunal, then the healing process can begin. Just as Milosevic must answer for Serbia, someone must answer for NATO. Who should go on trial for the deliberate NATO bombing of civilians in a television station? If the Serbians had committed this atrocity, would it have been a war crime? Why is it that the losers are the only ones ever charged with war crimes? Aren't the Albanians committing war crimes now?
M. Gordon, Australia

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Kosovo: One year on
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Key stories:
Nato's incomplete victory
The view from Kosovo
Serbs fear new war
Nato strikes: The untold story
An Uneasy Peace
Talking Point
Is the West losing the peace?
Is Nato guilty of war crimes?


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