On April 25th 1999 while walking around Central London, I saw right across the street from No. 10 Downing Street, A Serbian protest against the NATO bombing.

Just a bit later at Trafalgar Square, I saw a pro NATO rally by Kosovar Albanians. The difference in the size of the gathering could be directly attributed to the fact that the 25th of April is the anniversary of the founding of NATO.

In 1997 I was in Eastern Europe, wandering around the northern border area of the former Yugoslavian Republics. Didn’t see any tourists there, but did encounter UN security troops and locals who seemed amazed that I was neither a bible pusher, a reporter or connected with the military.

Anyway after finding out about the history of the region, I came to the conclusion that no matter what NATO or the UN does, “Shit” as they say, “will keep on happening.” That is because the people in the region have been long term ethnic and religious rivals. Over time political and military leaders have exploited nationalistic sentiments and escalated the ethnic and religious tensions, putting a ever growing decisive wedge between the various groups. Battles initially fought over ethnic and religious differences has turned into a vicious cycle of revenge and retribution. Lasting peace therefore will occur only when the various groups decide to over look the ethic and religious differences, forget what has happened in the past and find a reason to coexist.

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