"Some Damned Fool Thing in the Balkans"
Spengler at Asia Times has some very unpolitically correct thoughts. But is he right?
When the outcome of a tragedy is known in advance, it finds ways of occurring earlier than expected. In this case, the fate of 100,000 Serbian Christians who remain in Kosovo may pre-empt the debate over Europe's eventual absorption into the Muslim world. ... If Serbia and Russia draw a line in the sand over the independence of Kosovo, we may observe the second occasion in history when a Muslim advance on Europe halted on Serbian soil.
The Bill Clinton administration, in this writer's considered view, provoked NATO's 1999 bombing war against Serbia with malice of forethought, as a gesture to the Muslim world. The United States in effect was willing to bomb Christians in order to protect Muslims, in this case the Albanian Kosovo majority whom it accused the Serbs of mistreating. That is precisely what the Democrats say. In a January 3 article in the Financial Times, Democratic Senator Joseph Biden contended that Kosovo independence would constitute a "victory for Muslim democracy", and "a much-need example of US-Muslim partnership".
Whether or not Spengler is right on this score, any reasonable observer will agree that an important battle over which direction Europe will take is now being fought in the election precincts of France. The LA Times reports:
It is ironic that Nicolas Sarkozy, the front-runner in France's presidential race, finds himself on the defensive in the immigrant slums that could play a key role in today's first-round election
Chris Cillizza blogging at the Washington Post thinks this French election is very unpredictable. The polls have opened just now in Metropolitan France, after which we shall see what we shall see. At any rate, it is fair bet the tectonic plates are rattling when a French presidential contender poses in a red plaid shirt on horseback.