From the beginning of the Macedonian crisis, apologists for Western intervention were forced onto the defensive. In the face of mounting criticism, they denied that Kosovo was the main contributing factor to violence in Macedonia. Although this outcome had been predicted even two years prior, Western apologists went on for months protesting any Kosovo-Macedonia connection. The former region was home to the Kosovo Liberation Army; the "freedom fighters" in Macedonia were called the National Liberation Army. The Albanians in Macedonia, they declared, were different and had different grievances than their kinsmen in Kosovo; in short, Nato had run a neat, contained operation with minimal chance for spillover or "blowback."
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