sense of justice and integrity has been misinterpreted as proofrnthat she is a QuisHng who would betray her country to the UnitedrnStates.rnKosovo is, for the moment, an even more serious question.rnWe saw last year what Albanians can do to each other if they arernallowed to go on a rampage (to say nothing of the crime wavesrnAlbanian immigrants have inflicted on Europe and the UnitedrnStates), and this violence is nothing compared to what they willrndo, with a little air support from their American friends, whenrnthe Shiptar begin to riot in Macedonia and Greece.rnMeanwhile, the Hungarians of Serbian Vojvodina are clamoringrnfor their autonomy, and their cousins in Slovakia are pressuringrnthe Slovak government to demand autonomy for Kosovarn(notice how many American journalists, by the way, are adoptingrnthe Albanian pronunciation of a purely Slavic word—fromrnkos, blackbird—that means nothing in Albanian). The Slovaks,rnwho have had the chance to bear the gende yoke of imperialrnHungary, are quick to understand that the call for a greater Albaniarnbeing heard in Kosovo (and echoed by Albanian spokesmenrnin the United States like former congressman Joseph Dio-rnGuardi) will soon reverberate in harmony with demands for arnGreater Hvmgary that will include parts of Serbia, Romania,rnand Slovakia.rnSerbian politics is complicated by the rioting in Kosovo.rnImagine the situation in the United States if Mexican immigrantsrnbecame a majority in Texas and, aided and abetted byrnMexico, plotted a violent insurrection. When police arrest onernof the terrorist leaders, the insurgents riot in San Antonio, andrnwhen the governor calls in the National Guard, the internationalrncommunity threatens sanctions.rnThe editor, Dragomir Acovic, Dusan Batakovic, and Ronald Hatchett.rnBelgradernGaught in a three-way bind—Albanians, Hungarians, and thernAmerican-backed jihad in Bosnia—the Serbs see the handwritingrnon the wall, and the letters are not Gyrillic. The mood inrnBelgrade is deep depression. No gypsy bands play in the streets,rnno one sings patriotic songs in the cafes. The gray buildingsrnseem silent—”bare ruin’d choirs, where no birds sing.” Sincernthe United States quashed the demonstrations last year by reaffirmingrnits support for Milosevic, people do not know where tornturn.rnSrdja Trifkovic arranged a dinner in Belgrade with Serb intellectuals,rnand over a first course of bull’s testicles and Vranacrn(a Montenegrin red wine), Dragomir Acovic (architect, Rotarian,rnand royalist) observed with a cheerful gloominess that thernSerbs “are dying as a nation and dying as a people.” Acovic, arnman of affable wit and vast erudition, must also know that quiternapart from his nation he belongs to a dying breed of civilizedrnmen who will never fit into the New World Order. He hasrngood reason for despair: the “ex”-eommunists still hold his family’srnproperty, and he knows that more than one of the so-calledrnopposition leaders is willing to sell out to Milosevic.rnWhen I point out the parallel with the mood in 1865 of defeatedrnSoutherners, who thought that God was punishing themrnfor their lack of faith, Dusan Batakovic (research director of thernInstitute for Balkan Studies) quips, “I always sided with thernlosers in America —Indians and Southerners.” Such sympathyrnis natural for Serbs who have been subjugated by Turks, Hungarians,rnAustrians, Germans, and Americans, and whose greatrnnational myth is their failure to defeat the Turks at the battle ofrnKosovo in 1389.rnThe general pessimism is shared by Dr. Vojslav Kostunica,rnleader of the Democratic Party, virtually the only major politicalrnparty that has preserved its reputation for integrity. Kostunicarntakes a gloomy view of Serbia’s political future, and his predictionrnthat one or another of Milosevic’s opponents will leadrnhis part)’ into the government is fulfilled within two weeks.rnThe Mexicans—or rather, to drop the analogy, the Albaniansrn—are pursuing a two-tier strategy. They insist they are openrnto dialogue, but the only question they are willing to discuss isrnthe timetable for independence. The crackdown, althoughrncompletely justified from the standpoint of law and order, was arnbad move, as Kostunica points out, since it had the effect of reversingrnthe progress Serbia had been making in the internationalrncommunity.rnMilosevic, who lost the Krajina and bargained away Sarajevo,rnis now in a position to lose the ancient heartland of thernSerbs, and Kostunica ruefully concludes: “One always hopesrnthat Milosevic will learn from his mistakes, but one is alwaysrndisappointed.” Asked if the leader may be conspiring with thernAmericans —as it sometimes appears —Kostunica points outrnthat Milosevic simply cannot afford to pay the price. The lossrnof Kosovo will be a greater blow to his government than evenrnthe debacle in the Krajina, where U.S. military interventionrnpaved the wa)- for a Groatian offensive that expelled whate’errnSerb civilians managed to escape. Milosevic’s rise to power beganrnwhen he took up the cause of the downtrodden KosovornSerbs, and because the Albanians refuse to vote, he can countrnon 3 5 “cheap” deputies elected by Serbs who are naturally loyalrnto their champion. The career that began in Kosovo mayrnend there as well. Still, despite Albright’s threats, SlobodanrnMilosevic’s shelf-life has not yet expired.rnBanja LiikarnTurning to the Bosnian question, Kostunica has deep reservationsrnabout the government of Biljana Plavsic, who may not bernstrong enough to stand up to both her domestic rivals (who controlrnthe World Bank’s purse strings and can even impose theirrnown choice of amba.ssadors). The problems in Bosnia, he says,rnare moral landmines.rnJust getting to Banja Luka can be a problem, since the internationalrnbureaucrats, as part of their effort to divide the SerbsrnJUNE 1998/11rnrnrn