You would have certainly learned that the Council of Europe adopted earlier this week the Kosovo organ-trafficking report compiled by Swiss Senator Dick Marty. In the same time, NATO documents were leaked to the Guardian identifying Hashim Thaci and his closest aide Xhavit Haliti as organized crime bosses.

Leaving aside who will or should investigate and—if evidence is found—prosecute the case, or rather cases, the issue of the U.S. and UK responsibility in all of this should come to the fore. If their own security services believed that top Kosovo officials were involved in both war crimes and organized crime of the worst sort, how come that the very same leaders remained key Western partners through all those years? Perhaps the governments in Washington and London didn’t trust their own security services? Or did they rather feel that investigating Thaci and Halti would unnecessarily complicate things for what the NATO powers were trying to do at the time—make Kosovo independent?

I would propose that the latter is likely to be the case. Isn’t this a classic case of low expectations from places such as Kosovo? We may preach the rule of law, democracy and all that, but we don’t really expect much from them on that front. All we really care about is whether they fit into what we intend to do geopolitically.

Tihomir Loza

Tihomir Loza is deputy director of Transitions Online. Email:

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