Kosovo: Blue Hats or Black?
Jude Wanniski
June 7, 1999


Memo To: The New York Times owners and editors
From: Jude Wanniski
Re: The Keys to Kosovo

It generally is being reported that it was Slobodan Milosevic who "broke his promise" in the deal struck with the emissaries of the United Nations. Your senior correspondent in Brussels, Craig R. Whitney, at least is careful in his report today to note that Belgrade is balking because the "deal" requires the keys to Kosovo be turned over to the United Nations and their peacekeepers, not the imperial force of NATO, the new dark force on the planet. As Whitney put it: "The United States and Britain agree with France, Germany and other European allies that the peacekeeping force should have the Security Council's authorization. But American and British officials are concerned that if approval is delayed and the Serbs are withdrawing troops, NATO should be ready to move in to prevent a vacuum. France and most of the European allies do not see things that way, and neither does Russia. Western diplomats hope that Russia would approve a Security Council resolution sending in peacekeepers regardless of whether Mr. Milosevic wants them, under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. Russia also might join the peacekeeping force on its own terms. But Russia certainly would not approve of NATO troops entering Kosovo without a resolution. Today, in remarks televised in Moscow, the Russian Prime Minister, Sergei V. Stepashin, made clear that Russia was not pleased with NATO's terms for ending the bombing: ‘Too many questions are being solved with NATO calling the tune.'"

Now it does not take a rocket scientist to see that it is not Milosevic who is breaking the deal, but NATO, an international military power not directly under the control of the American people. It has elbowed its way to the front of the line, demanding Serbia surrender to it. Is this what the NYTimes wants? Should we put the United Nations into mothballs and bet our chips on NATO in the New World Order? I wish you guys would address this point. The Wall Street Journal editorial page clearly has no use for the United Nations in this regard, because the Communist powers we defeated in the Cold War have permanent seats in the Security Council. The WSJ prefers NATO, where we only need the approval of nation states we defeated in World War II.

In case you missed it, please take a look at Bob Novak's column today. It gets into some of these messy issues. As I recall, the Times was an early supporter of the UN and still is considered one. Please figure this out for your poor readers and let us know what we are supposed to think.