But talk is cheap. Washington’s actions tell a different story. Despite its claim to the contrary, the Clinton administration doesn’t consider violence “inadmissible.” In fact, U.S. special envoy Richard Holbrooke recently rewarded and legitimized the KLA’s violence by offering KLA representatives a spot on the Kosovar Albanian negotiating team. At the same time, Holbrooke is unwilling to expand the Serbian side’s negotiating team to include nonviolent opposition leaders like Democratic Party president Zoran Djindjic and Serbian Orthodox bishop Artemije. Djindjic wants a Kosovo solution that establishes equality under the law and regional stability. Bishop Artemije leads a two‐year‐old peace movement that espouses a federalism plan that would simultaneously ease tensions in Kosovo and reduce the power of Serbian strongman Slobodan Milosevic.
Moreover, inviting the KLA to join the Kosovar Albanian negotiating team is downright hypocritical. In February, U.S. special envoy Robert Gelbard asserted that the KLA “is, without any questions, a terrorist group.” But now Washington wants the Yugoslav government to bargain with the KLA. That is a policy Washington would never consider for itself — negotiating with a group that it had identified as a terrorist organization.