My fellow dutchman Peter Feith has a new idea. He is going to use the Ahtisaari Plan to blackmail Kosovo's Serbs in submission. In his words: "The offer is on the table. It is up to the Kosovo Serbs alone to judge and take this offer". Of course that won't work, but that is not his problem. It will be a good excuse for his Albanian friends to refuse those Serbs the autonomy that the Ahtisaari Plan offers them. An autonomy that many of Kosovo's Albanian leaders don't like anyway.
Feith seems to understand his mission narrowly as the promotion of Kosovo's independence. It would be a much wiser course of action to give Kosovo's Serbs the Ahtisaari autonomy on their terms - under the guidance of the European Council. That way the autonomy can prove itself. If it really works and provides the Serbs an environment were they feel at home that would be a big step towards solving Kosovo's status.
The same "surrender or we will cleanse you" mentality can also be seen in the recent decision of EULEX and the Kosovo government that Serb cops should return to the police before june 30 or they will be fired.
It seems to be the ideology of the diplomats involved that only results matter. I beg to differ: their mafia-style behavior may influence Kosovo politics for decades to come. Just look at the color revolutions where lots of Western money for PR and "non-violent" means like the storming of the parliament building were supposed to strengthen democracy. In Kyrgyzstan and Georgia the men brought to power are showing clear dictatorial inclinations. In Ukraine Yushchenko's approval rates stand now at 3%. What would have happened in Serbia if Djindjic hadn't been assassinated is not clear, but his approval ratings at that time were already quite low. And Tadic Machiavellian tactics poison Serbia's politics.
In the end the dubious means of those Western diplomats may have more lasting and profound effects than the goals they reach.