C.I.A. Confidential

Kosovo and the Albanian Drug Trade

As I write this at the end of April, the NATO bombing of Yugoslavia is in its fourth week. Albania—predictably—has been turned into a NATO base, and the Kosovo Liberation Army is openly recruiting volunteers in NATO countries, including the United States, where both U.S.-born Albanians and Albanian resident aliens are allowed to join the ranks of an armed movement that meets all the standards of a terrorist organization. In late 1998, the New York Times reported that Kosovo Albanians in America—with the approval of the U.S. State Department—were collecting money to purchase arms for the terrorists. (This activity is not banned by federal law as long as the State Department does not list the KLA as a terrorist organization.) The Albanians coordinating the fundraising acknowledged that they had collected the fantastic sum of $100 million from Kosovo Albanians in New York, Detroit, Chicago, and Boston. The transportation of arms to Albania was also coordinated from the United States.

The State Department's decision not to include the KLA on its list of terrorist organizations makes a mockery of international justice. While the Clinton administration knows that the KLA is receiving arms from Iran, has ties to Osama bin Laden, and is deeply involved in the international drug trade, these facts have been kept from the general public. The sporadic voices of former American officials who caution against...

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