The Albanians have celebrated President Bush’s arrival with a hero’s welcome:
President Bush, getting a hero’s welcome as the first American president to visit this Balkan nation, said Sunday that there cannot be endless dialogue about achieving independence for neighboring Kosovo.
“Sooner rather than later you’ve got to say ‘Enough’s enough. Kosovo’s independent,”‘ Bush said during a news conference with the prime minister of this tiny, impoverished country.
Bush’s press for statehood was aimed at Russia and others that object to Kosovo’s independence. Standing alongside Prime Minister Sali Berisha, Bush said any extension of talks on Kosovo must have “certain independence” as the goal.
I’m not the biggest fan of the Kosovo war, but if it helped make Albania a member of the Coalition of the Willing, I guess some good came from it after all. Albania is, after all, a Muslim country. Their troops could come in handy for the occupation of Syria and Iran.
Russia’s not happy, as usual:
The issue of independence for the Serbian province of Kosovo is another issue on which the U.S. and Russia disagree.
Russia, an ally of Serbia, contends independence for Kosovo would set a dangerous precedent for the world’s other breakaway regions. Serbia also opposes statehood for Kosovo, which it sees as the heart of its historic homeland.
I think we may be able to assuage Russia, though, if Kosovar troops and Albanian troops are deployed to Chechnya to help them control it. Once the Russians see the value of independent Muslim forces aiding their coalition, we can all settle down and be friends again.
Ultimately, of course, our goal must be to make Albania Christian. In the short term, having Muslim allies is useful; in the long term, having Muslims is contrary to the tenets of Christianity. We should send missionaries in to Kosovo and Albania, and help our new friends find salvation. We can hammer out the details later, though. This is a moment to savor.