A number of sources confirm that the so-called «Kosovo Liberation Army» («KLA») was set up by Albanian reactionaries acting in concert with the German external intelligence service, the BND (Bundesnachrichtendienst), and special military forces. Information comes from Yugoslav, French, U.S., and other sources. (There is material from Germany on the BND/KLA connection. If you can read German and would like to translate please contact UNS.)
A Yugoslav journalist quotes a newspaper from Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, an ex-Yugoslav country whose ruling party is closely tied to Bonn:
That various foreign fingers are involved in the events in Kosovo and Metohija is also confirmed by the Zagreb «Nacional» in its latest addition, writing that the German intelligence services are training and equipping the members of the so-called «OVK» [i.e., «KLA»]. The newspaper recalls that the seat of the so-called government of Kosovo in exile is located in Germany. «Nacional» writes the following:
«At the time when OVK was being formed, at the head of the BND came Hansjorg Gaider. One of his first decisions was establishment of one of the largest centers for his clandestine services in Tirana. Agents of the BND for some time now are cooperating with the operatives of the SHIK, the Albanian secret service. SHIK is the successor of Sigurimi, the communist secret service from the times of Enver Hodza, whose agents are operating even today. At the same time, the office of the BND in Rome operated in the sense of intelligence and political suspport, including talks with refugees in Trieste and Bari».
Further on, this Zagreb weekly also writes: «Inside the broader intelligence community it is believed that the BND had selected people for the chain of command in the OVK, while MAD (German military intelligence officers), and the KSK commandos were in charge of training of fighters and of securing communication equipment. KSK special forces were engaged within the Bosnia and Herzegovina forces in apprehension of persons indicted for war crimes. MAD allegedly also secured telephone surveillance bugs from the former East-German secret service Stasi. (R. Arsenic, «`OVK' Terrorists Trained by the German Secret Service», October 9, 1998. http://www.serbia-info.com/news/1998-10/09/5509.html
The Intelligence Newsletter, a French source, corroborates Arsenic's report and adds,
When Hansjorg Geiger took over BND in 1996 the agency won a green light to provide logistic support and training for UCK. Bujor Bukosi, who had been Rugova's [head of an imperialist-sponsored «shadow government in Kosovo-AH] deputy before moving on to become political head of UCK, was allowed to install as government-in-exile in Bonn. The number two man at BND, Rainer Kesselring, son of the Luftwaffe general who bombed Belgrade (IN 290) in World War Two, oversaw the operation and arranged for some Kosovar guerillas to train at Izmir in Turkey, where he had been BND's station chief in 1978. Political support that the BND station in Rome provided for UCK was arranged by the former chief-of-staff of foreign minister Klaus Kinkel when he was head of BND. French sources have confirmed that special Bundeswehr [German Army] units, Commandos Specialkrafte (KSK), which are currently operating in Bosnia, have provided training for Kosovar fighters. Whether it's a coincidence or not, the KSK commando force was set up by gen. Klaus Naumann, current chairman of NATO's military committee, who has come out particularly strongly in favor of Alliance military action against Slobodan Milosevic in the Kosovo affair.
Intelligence Newsletter is a subscription-only, pay by the article site, but here is the url for the page from which the article of the quote above can be purchased:
The same source's newsletter of June 2, 1993, said that «According to information in the local Chicago press, the public relations company Ruder Finn «is being paid up to $40,000 a month by Kosovo's ethnic Albanian leadership to distribute anti-Serbian disinformation.» This was well into the period of the destabilization of Yugoslavia.
Corroboration of German involvement with the «KLA» also comes from the New York Times. Washington's first response to the «KLA» was to brand it a «terrorist organization». It takes one to know one, after all. It was probably out of annoyance at Bonn that the NYT ran an unusually informative article on July 11, 1998 by Chris Hedges titled, «With Better Weapons, Kosovo Separatists Turn Tide in War». Here are a few excerpts:
While the rebels are guarded about letting outsiders view stocks of weapons smuggled over the border from Albania, there has been a noticeable proliferation of rocket-propelled grenades and the highly accurate German anti-tank weapon known as the Armbrust. A rebel in Smonica, lifting the grayish-green tube, showed the snap-out LED display on the German weapon with a series of tanks of various sizes profiled on the sight. . .
But the rebel movement is growing in numbers and in strength, fed by recruits, money and arms from outside Serbia. The rebels may not have the power to win a secessionist war against Serbia, but with arms and money they can keep up their resistance and draw out the conflict. . .
The Kosovo Liberation Army, despite its shoddy organization and lack of military acumen, is apparently blessed with large sums of money sent by ethnic Albanians overseas, an inexhaustible supply line over the mountains from Albania and thousands of recruits. Rebel soldiers, in full uniform with the red and black patch of the Kosovo Liberation Army, pull thick wads of German marks from their pockets. . .
The supreme commander of NATO, Gen. Wesley Clarke, during a meeting a few days ago in Zagreb with Croatia's Defense Minister, voiced displeasure over the flow of professional soldiers from Croatia to Kosovo, according to Western diplomats in Zagreb.
«We are not sure that Zagreb is organizing this,» said a Western diplomat, «but at the same time it is doing nothing to stop it.»
As to the identity of the ethnic Albanians oversees who send the money, there is evidence that at least some of them are, as in the case of the Nicaraguan contras, druglords. The following citations are taken from the web site of the Federation of American Scientists at http://www.fas.org/irp/world/serbia/docs/4_e.html. The multiplicity of weapons sources is fully consistent with the evidence of German involvement.
May 1998, No. 23 «Balkan infos» magazine, Paris ; from the article «Enough Weapons» by Kosta Christich:
«The weapons to be found in the region were collected in Albania during total anarchy prevailing in that country and sent to Kosovo by various channels: one ran via Tuzi, on the Montenegrin border, and the other via Dakovica, in Metohija... The weapons of Israeli and American make were coming secretly from Turkey, via Bulgaria and Greece. The region in which the conflicts have calmed down, that is, Bosnia and Herzegovina, also supplied Albanian nationalists with their weapons and volunteers, including foreign mujahedin. As for the Western channels, the deliveries have almost always arrived in the Albanian port of Durres. The acquisition of these weapons is financed out of contributions from drug trafficking, in which the Albanian mafia enjoys privileged status [emphasis added]. These several data are sufficient to point to the inaccuracy of a thesis that the crisis in Kosovo, with its destructive power, is threatening to spill all over the region. In fact, everything has been done to contaminate the region in order to conquer Kosovo.
17 July 1998, NRK (Norwegian National TV)
«Last week, the customs officials from Oslo seized 11 kg of heroin, whose «street value» amounts to 30 million Kroner. The drug was hidden in the diesel tank of an automobile. The driver, a 53-year old Austrian, was arrested. This time too, the recepients of heroin were the Kosovo Albanians. After a few days, two Kosovo Albanians, suspected of being the recepients of this very large shipment of heroin, were put under arrest. That same week, the court in Stavanger sentenced four Kosovo Albanians to 13-18 years in prison for smuggling one of the largest quantity of heroin ever to be recorded on the Norwegian west coast.
The Norwegian and Swedish state security officials analyzed the seizures of heroin during the past two years. According to them, ethnic Albanians account for 80 per cent of drug smuggling. Profits from trafficking in heroin amount to hundreds of millions of Kroner. When asked what the money from drugs is used for, Walter Kege, head of the narcotics Division of the Swedish Royal Police, answered: «We know for sure that this money is used for their so-called struggle for liberation.» [Emphasis added]
27 July, 1998, «Washington Post» , from the article «Refugee Donations Finance Kosovo Rebels»:
«...Ibrahim Kelmendi, who manages the «Homeland Calling» Fund in which all donations made throughout the Albanian diaspora are kept, said that contributions towards armed resistance amount tonearly one million dollars each month. This amount is also accepted by the German intelligence services which keep extremists and refugee groups in Germany under surveillance...
The Swiss authorities state that the Kosovo crisis has confirmed their suspicion about the connections of the Albanian diaspora with widespread arms and drug trafficking. Ninety per cent of traffic in heroin in Switzerland - one of the main crossroads in traffic in hard drugs - is now controlled by the Albanian traffickers' circles, says Pierre Duc, head of the Narcotics Department in Lausanne, Switzerland... «We still have no direct evidence but our experience tells us that the channels used for traffic in hard drugs are also used for arms», says Duc... «During the past few months, the amount of heroin smuggled from Turkey and Albania into Western Europe rose enormously and Duc thinks that the amount of weapons cannot be much smaller.» [Emphasis added]
27 July 1988, «Focus», Austria; from the article «Suspicious Agencies»:
«According to the Federal Crime Control Bureau (BKA), the KLA guerrillas are also financed out of profits from criminal activities. In Germany, the state security and law-enforcement agencies have increasingly more evidence that money for the «liberation army» of the Kosovo Albanians (KLA) stems also from profits from organized crime. . .
A new suspicion is arousing in neighbouring Macedonia: the Bulgarian armament industry is concluding arrangements linked to Kosovo with an ulterior motive to draw the Macedonian Albanians into a maelstrom, thus contributing to the collapse of Macedonia and having a new chance to revive old Bulgarian claims to eastern Macedonia.
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