A new democracy, forget Milosevic

Meanwhile, the relatively non-violent revolution in Yugoslavia has given much of the world a new sense of optimism in the belief that a people can overcome a tyrannical leader. After much propaganda, manipulation and fraud, former President Slobodan Milosevic conceded defeat Friday to Kostunica, a constitutional lawyer, in the original Sept. 24 elections. President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright were quick to reveal their elation and offer their support for the new leader. The United States and other nations would be wise, however, to respect the Kostunica’s wishes and avoid requesting Milosevic’s extradition to The Hague for a war crimes trial.
Ideally, Yugoslavia’s former ruler would give himself up, offering his apologies to the thousands he indirectly helped murder during his 13 years in office. But we must be pragmatic.
If Kostunica were to arrest Milosevic and send him to the Netherlands for “western justice,” turmoil would again engulf Yugoslavia, as the military and one-third of parliament still swear their allegiance to Milosevic. Many Serbians would then consider Kostunica a puppet of the western powers, as Milosevic depicted him during the election.
Albright and Clinton must be careful not to exacerbate the situation any further and instead continue toward relieving the economically detrimental sanctions imposed within the last four years.
For some reason, it does not seem unusual that while one politically and religiously volatile region unravels through bloodletting, another discovers a new stability with a more democratic leader. Perhaps, just as local conflicts have spread from this region and resulted in world wars, peace and democracy could emerge and positively impact Middle Eastern affairs. Some dream.