Friday, September 30, 2005

President Ibrahim Rugova

News has emerged this month that President Ibrahim Rugova has lung cancer.  He was diagnosed at an American military hospital in Germany earlier this month.  Reportedly, the cancer has only attacked one lung so far but he is visibly weaker.  He has stated that he will not resign from the position of President because he wishes to see Kosovo through to independence from Serbia.  However, he has turned over some of the day-to-day functions to his successor in the LDK party, Nexhat Daci.  Whether or not Rugova will be able to live to see the realization of the Albanian dream to have an independent Albanian state of Kosovo will partly be determined later next month when the report on standards is presented to the UN Security Council by the special representative to the Secretary-General Kai Eide.  There are some fears that Rugova's departure from politics will severely hamper Kosovo's bid for independence because he seems to be the bridge that unites his LDK party that is bitterly divided.  So we will have to wait and see if Rugova can continue his battle against the cancer that is attacking his body and the international politics that may prevent his dream of unconditional independence.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Scrambled Eggs???

There is was a protest today by the "Self Determination" group and they tossed eggs at the entrance of MHQ.  Security was droning on and on this morning that we should avoid the area...guess that means I should have packed it up for lunch and gone home for a nap?!  Yeah, I wish!  The weather is definitely nap weather...cold & rainy.  It is hard to be enthusiastic about waking up in the morning after two weeks of glorious sunshine in Egypt :)  But se la vie...what can I do?
This past weekend, four Serbs from Gracanica were arrested for war crimes committed in 1999.  Since then, the Serbs have been protesting by blocking the roads in Gracanica.  While annoying, it does a good job of making a statement because the main route to Gjilane is through Gracanica and when the road is blocked, the alternate way takes about twice as long to travel.  The Serbs say that they will continue the roadblocks until the arrestees are released.