Friday, March 19, 2004

Purgatory (Day 3)

1615 CET:  Emin was able to get home to Gracanica using different backroads (I believe the term "worst shit" entered the conversation when he was describing them.)  He closed all the shutters and turned off all the heaters I had on...before the roads closed, it was still not warm...but now the temperature in the house was well in the 80's!!!  Smokey is doing fine and occasionally barking at the soldiers that have been stationed at the KPS police station across the street.

Blame as to who is responsible for the violence the past two days has started to fly as an international mud-slinging contest begins.  The Prime Minister, Rexhepi, has blamed the UN and NATO for failing to halt the bloodshed.  A NATO spokesman stated that the attacks on Serbian villages appeared to be pre-mediated and orchestrated.  The Serbian Foreign Minister has called it an orchestrated attack to ethnically cleanse the Serbs from Kosovo. 

1530 CET:  I have been checking for a way to go home as I've been informed that my landlord needs food and medicine.  All the roads are still blocked and I was informed that there are snipers around Gracanica and even the back roads are not safe.  So, it looks like I won't be able to go home anytime soon.

1100 CET:  Remember Andriy who was lucky to get his belongings yesterday?  We returned to his flat this morning to retrieve the rest of his belongings.  His apartment had been broken into over-night even though the building was "protected" by KPS (Kosovo Police Service).  While nothing was stolen, they broke what they could and made a mess.  Any of the apartments that hadn't been broken into was and any of the vehicles that hadn't had the windows smashed out (including international) were destroyed.  We tried to get to Gracanica but the road was still blocked with no chance of getting through.  The KPS officer said that the backroads were open but we decided to return to the office to check with Security first. 

0900 CET:  I saw three UN vehicles going down the street today on my way into work.  Two were being driven and one was the burnt remains of a UN vehicle on the back of a tow-truck.  But life seems to have returned to normal for the local population.  It is very strange because they act as nothing has or is happening.