One can only imagine the risk when some citizens of a small country conceal hundreds of thousands of weapons and explosives. The nation becomes a powder keg, awaiting one small mistake to spark a deadly explosion.
This is the situation currently in Albania. During the civil war of 1997, military depots were looted, and more than 650,000 guns, 1.5 billion bullets, 3.5 million grenades and 1 million landmines were stolen from military warehouses by various criminal groups and the Kosovo Liberation Army.
The government has attempted to resolve, or at least reduce, this serious problem. Since 1997, it has announced three amnesty orders for the delivery of looted weapons (a fourth is currently proposed). Yet, only about 40% of the weapons have been returned (exact numbers are impossible to determine), and it is estimated that between 300,000 and 325,000 weapons are still in private possession, many of them possessed by criminals. Albanian media previously reported that some of the illegal weapons imported into Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro, Greece and Italy may have been from this stockpile, and they believe that even after more than two decades, these weapons are still being found and used in Albania’s neighboring countries such as Greece and Italy.
The Albanian people experienced war and violence in their country 20 years ago, which led to the deaths of over 2,000 people and left thousands more homeless. Citizens of that country, have no inclination to, once again, become a centre for crisis in the region and bear the political and security consequences which would result. This, of course, would negatively impact their goal of joining the European Union.
And now an Albanian journalist, Ebi Spahiu, an independent analyst on Central Asian and Western Balkan Affairs has sounded the alarm about weapons being in possession of anti-Iranian terrorists. This journalist expressed her concern about the possibility of Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization’s (MKO; sometimes referred to as MEK) having access to these weapons and the danger of rearming themselves.
The MKO is a terrorist organization that seeks to overthrow the government of Iran and replace it with one that would certainly bow to any and all U.S. demands. The MKO is responsible for the deaths of thousands of Iranians over the years. Now based in Albania, it was formerly headquartered in Iraq.
Members of the Mujahedin, believed to be in possession of some of the weapons looted from Albania in 1997, also stole arms from Iran. After the victory of the 1979 Islamic Revolution in Iran, they carried out numerous attacks on barracks, police stations and military bases and stole a large number of weapons, which they used to increase their assassinations of Iranian citizens and officials.
It took at least three years, from 2013 – 2016, for the Iraqi government and political-social activists to oust the Mujahedin from Iraq. Few countries were willing to shelter the Mujahedin. However, with the support of the United States, they relocated to Albania. This was an interesting development, because the MKO is a semi-militant organization which was forcibly disarmed by the United States in 2003 after the occupation of Iraq. In addition, 16 military bases and heavy weapons such as tanks which were previously provided to the MKO by the former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein were all recaptured and handed over to the Iraqi military. The U.S. only began supporting the group as its hostility to Iran increased.
In addition, the MKO was housed in a military camp called Ashraf after 2003, in the Diyala province of Iraq, which was one of the main strongholds of the Al-Qaeda terrorist organization. The Mujahedin were able to establish close contact with foreign extremist terrorists who had entered Iraq and provided them with a great deal of intelligence. They also used part of Camp Ashraf as a site for military and combat training for terrorists.
With so many weapons in the hands of Albanians, there is a high risks that the MKO, with its long history of conducting military operations, could gain access to illegal weapons in that country and use them in pursuit of their goals. While their ability to achieve those goals is slim, they could still cause tremendous suffering as they attempt to reach them.
Adding to the risk is the fact that Albania is a center of arms smuggling in the Balkans; thus, buying large quantities of weapons is not difficult for the MKO since the organization is now headquartered in that country.
The MKO’s interference in Iraq during the period of Saddam Hussein, and then intervening in post-Saddam Iraqi political tensions, indicates the threat that it can be, and therefore it must be carefully controlled by any country where MKO members have a presence. Any violent actions by the group could have a negative impact on the security of this region of the world.
Indications of future violence are in clear evidence; even Twitter briefly restricted the group’s activities, and suspended the leader.
Beyond the MKO, the presence of jihadist extremists, especially in southeastern Albania, bring widespread activities of arms and drug trafficking. Adding the presence of the Mujahedin-e Khalq into this already-deadly mix further jeopardizes the safety of the citizens in this country and further destabilizes the entire region.
The support that the United States currently offers to the MKO must end. Without that support, the MKO would be unable to continue its operations in Albania, and the risk of further terrorist activities by its members would decrease significantly.
Originally published on
Author: Robert Fantina
Source: Global Research
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.
Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!
Donate to Support Us
We would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics, and international relations.
The words “possible criminal actions” by CIA employees are used in the report.The terms unethical and immoral are mentioned. The criminality of those who ordered these actions at the highest levels of government, however, is not acknowledged.The actions directed against alleged jihadists are categorized as ineffective in the process of revealing intelligence. This in itself is a red herring. The objective of torture was not to reveal intelligence.What of course is not acknowledged is that the alleged terrorists who were tortured were framed by the CIA.Known and documented the Al Qaeda network is a creation of US intelligence.The jihadists are ...
Prof. Djordje Jankovic, Ph.DFaculty of PhilosophyBelgrade UniversityMiddle Ages in Noel Malcolm’s Kosovo: A Short History and Real FactsBefore presenting the interpretations of the mediaeval past of Kosovo and Metohija in Noel Malcolm’s work, one should be aware of the tasks set by the author before writing the book. That way, the acrobatic handling of the evidence which he uses or does not use will become clearer. In the introductory text, ten pages long, he clearly presents his political and ideological position. They are as follows (p. XXXIV-XXXV): “Kosovo” is one of the cultural crossroads of Europe – which is wrong; ...
NATO has expanded dramatically after the collapse of its primary rivals, the USSR and the Warsaw Treaty Organization, Canadian Professor Michael Jabara Carley notes, posing the question whether NATO was founded as a defensive or an offensive alliance.The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), a military alliance aimed against the Soviet Union, was established on April 4, 1949; and only seven years after the formation of NATO the Warsaw Treaty Organization was established bringing together eight nations (versus 15 NATO member-states).So, who was the real “aggressor”? What alliance was an offensive one?“There has been much discussion recently of NATO in the mainstream and alternate media. Why was ...
In early January 2020, Serbian media reported the sensational news that recently declassified British Ministry of Defense files contained important new evidence suggesting that the official account of what happened in Srebrenica was unfounded.As from time to time has been the case, Western sources have again disclosed some information about Srebrenica in July 1995, which until recently was kept confidential and therefore not available to the public. The source of this particular batch of documents is the UK Department of Defense. The documents that have finally been declassified contains very interesting assessments and reports that take on even greater significance ...
The most useful parable about progressives is that offered by Bernard Sanders, self-styled “socialist-progressive-independent” rep from Vermont. Sanders owes his political career to rage against the Vietnam War among radicals, many of whom moved into the state in the early 1970s. They forthwith planned a long-term, carefully organized, assault on Vermont’s two-party structure. Sanders linked his political ambitions to this effort to organize a third force, the Progressive Alliance. He became mayor of Burlington and, later, congressman.At a rapid clip the emphasis moved from party-building to Sanders-building. By 1994, it was apparent that the only movement B. Sanders was interested in ...
Noel Malcolm – Kosovo – A Short HistoryA history written with an attempt to support Albanian territorial claims in the BalkansA Short History of Kosovo by Noel Malcolm is usually considered as one of the prime historical sources on the history of the province. In fact, this book is an example of the History with a political attitude because it is not by chance that Malcolm who attacks the “myths” of Serbian history is at the same time a president of the Anglo-Albanian Association and one of the strongest supporters of independence of Kosovo. Being far from an objective scientific ...
Turkish-US relations have faced many serious stress tests over the past 50 years. The catalyst in overcoming those crises was making strategic considerations, which always underlined the dependence of the two NATO allies on each other, regardless of their differences.These strategic considerations appear to be weakening now, as the regional priorities of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Turkey and the United States no longer overlap, and in many cases conflict with each other.That is certainly the case in Syria, where the two countries are at odds over Washington’s alliance with Syrian Kurdish groups against the Islamic State (IS). Ankara insists these groups are ...
The international community is accustomed to the so-called “checkbook diplomacy” that has been used by China and Taiwan to pilfer each other’s diplomatic allies by exchanging diplomatic recognition for generous financial assistance packages. However, this same battle for diplomatic recognition and de-recognition is being played out between Serbia and its breakaway province of Kosovo. The United States and much of NATO has not only granted Kosovo diplomatic recognition over the objection of Serbia but has also pressured other countries to recognize Kosovo’s independence. This process has hit a major stumbling block amid charges from various parties that fake diplomatic letters ...
Why is France so interested in Syria? According to the Guardian, France’s policy in Syria has been “more forward than any other Western country”:
“[France] was early in calling for President Bashar al-Assad to step down, still insists he must go, and recently joined airstrikes inside Syria against the Islamic State.”
France joined the United States in bombing Syrian territory (without a U.N. mandate) even before the United Kingdom did. In 2013, France stood by Obama’s side despite the fact the United Kingdom’s parliament voted not to join Obama’s efforts to “punish” Syrian president Bashar al-Assad for crossing Obama’s imaginary red line. ...
Here we go again. In yet another Pentagon precision strike, a residential building in Achin district of Nangarhar province was hit as a crowd welcomed home a tribal leader returning from the Hajj.At least 13 civilians were turned into «collateral damage». The Pentagon of course does not «discuss the details of counter-terror operations», but it’s «currently reviewing all materials related to this strike».Nothing obviously will come out of it – adding the civilian dead to the non-stop mounting toll of Operation Enduring Freedom (Forever).Someone that actually is bound to endure his freedom in full splendor is former warlord, head of ...
Future war “may see attacks via computer viruses, worms, logic bombs, and trojan horses rather than bullets, bombs, and missiles” [Steven Metz, Armed Conflict in the 21st Century: The Information Revolution and Post-Modern Warfare, Carlisle, PA: Strategic Studies Institute, 2000, xiii].First partThe facilities of the Internet in politicsThe Internet or the WWW (World Wide Web) became massively widespread around the globe since the late 1980s or more precisely since 1989 – in the same year when the Berlin Wall collapsed and, therefore, enabled the Cold War 1.0 to enter the final stage of its end. That is why both of these ...
The ‘mainstream’ Western media is, almost by definition, the last place to consult for honest reporting of Western crimes. Consider the appalling case of Yemen which is consumed by war and an ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.Since March 2015, a ‘coalition’ of Sunni Arab states led by Saudi Arabia, and supported by the US, Britain and France, has been dropping bombs on neighbouring Yemen. The scale of the bombing is indicated in a recent article by Felicity Arbuthnot – in one year, 330,000 homes, 648 mosques, 630 schools and institutes, and 250 health facilities were destroyed or damaged. The stated aim of ...
The New York Times reported on October 22 that the United States has “just over 240,000 active-duty and reserve troops in at least 172 countries and territories,” which is a staggering total. But in an intriguing revelation the Times reported that there are a further 37,813 troops deployed “on presumably secret assignment in places listed simply as ‘unknown.’ The Pentagon provided no further explanation.”It is not surprising that Washington’s war-spreaders do not supply information to the American public concerning the location of soldiers, sailors, marines and airmen involved in clandestine operations around the globe, because this might bring to light the lack of justification for ...
This Wednesday, February 11 , will mark the 80th anniversary of the signing of the Lateran Treaty and related agreements, in which Benito Mussolini’s Italy recognized the Vatican as an independent state and showered it with money and other benefits. Mussolini got what he paid for.
For well over a thousand years prior to 1929, Popes exercised absolute civil authority over central Italy, a region known as the “Papal States.” Their power was based on a document called the “Donation of Constantine,” in which the 4th century Roman emperor Constantine was supposed to have granted the successors of St. Peter control ...
A great explanation from an excellent analyst of what happened in Serbia 20 years ago, and why the Ukraine feels like Deja Vu
‘Operation Storm’ in August 1995, when Croatia overran the Serb-inhabited territory of Krajina, was the biggest single instance of ethnic cleansing in the Yugoslav Wars, Because the attack was backed by the US, however, it was never treated as a crime.
Between August 4 and August 7, up to 2,000 people were killed and over 220,000 driven from their homes by the Croatian army. No “invaders,” these Serbs had lived in the Krajina – their word for borderlands – for centuries. The ...
“Now that the global circumstances have changed, and when the United States and NATO are losing their influence, and while the powers that are in favor of preserving Kosovo and Metohija – such as Russia and China – are strengthening, we are nevertheless pursuing a policy of complete surrender.”The aim of the internal dialogue conducted by the Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, should be to distribute responsibilities and to be the cover for the final surrender of Kosovo and Metohija.The government constantly assures us that it will never recognize Kosovo as an independent State, but here we must point out the ...
Obama has announced new sanctions on Russia based on unsubstantiated charges by the CIA that the Russian government influenced the outcome of the US presidential election with “malicious cyber-enabled activities.”
The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued a report “related to the declaration of 35 Russian officials persona non grata for malicious cyber activity and harassment.”
The report is a description of “tools and infrastructure used by Russian intelligence services to compromise and exploit networks and infrastructure associated with the recent U.S. election, as well as a range of U.S. government, political and private sector entities.”
The report does not provide ...
Origins of images: Facebook, Twitter, Wikimedia, Wikipedia, Flickr, Google, Imageinjection, Public Domain & Pinterest.Read our Disclaimer/Legal Statement!Donate to Support UsWe would like to ask you to consider a small donation to help our team keep working. We accept no advertising and rely only on you, our readers, to keep us digging the truth on history, global politics and international relations.[wpedon id="4696" align="left"]SaveSave
March 24, 2018, marks the 19th anniversary of NATO illegal and illegitimate bombing of Yugoslavia, Serbia and its Kosovo, province during 78 days. It has – one is tempted to say: of course – been conveniently forgotten by the West itself.It was masterminded by the United States under Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright after the so-called negotiations between Serbs and Albanians in Rambouillet outside Paris (the parties never met face-to-face).While Clinton may be best remembered for his relations with Monica Lewinsky and his wife, Hillary Clinton, some of us also remember him (and Albright) for bombing Afghanistan, ...
The Role of 9/11 in Justifying Torture and War
Noel Malcolm: “Kosovo – A Short History”, 1999. A History Written With an Attempt to Support Albanian Territorial Claims in the Balkans (Third part)
Why didn’t Washington Dissolve NATO after Collapse of USSR?
New British Documents about Srebrenica
The Birkenstock Bomber: When Bernie did Serbia
Noel Malcolm: “Kosovo – A Short History”, 1999. A History Written with an Attempt to Support Albanian Territorial Claims in the Balkans (First part)
Are We Headed for a Turkish-American Breakup?
De-Recognition of Kosovo: US Tries to Stem the Tide
Here’s Why France Should Be Blamed for the Destruction in Syria
Afghanistan: It is the Heroin, Stupid
The Power of the Internet in Politics
Crimes against Humanity: Britain’s Complicity in Saudi Arabia’s Terror Campaign against Yemen
Europe in 2050: Projected Population Change
The 1929 Lateran Treaty: B. Mussolini’s Faith-Based Initiative
America’s “Junkyard Dogs”: Operation “Storm” in 1995
Serbia’s Sovereignty as a Nation State: Serbia does not need a ‘Dialogue’ on Kosovo
What is the Obama Regime?
The Origin of the Nazi Salutes
Remembering the 1999 War on Yugoslavia (Serbia & Montenegro)
FOLLOW US ON OUR SOCIAL PLATFORMS