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Just Dropping In

It looks like Albania will be having a Presidential visit in June. President Bush will be stopping off for a day after the G-8 Summit in Germany.

I remember these visits in Belfast. President Clinton dropped in a couple of times to offer support for the political negotiations that were taking place in the late 1990's. His security people insisted on shutting down most of Belfast and it was almost impossible to move.

Clinton made a number of public appearances - including turning on the lights on Belfast's Christmas tree, so people got a chance to see and hear him. There are no details of President Bush's schedule, but I doubt he will be meeting the public.

All in all a good day to sit on the balcony with some beer, some ice-cream and a good book.


ITS said…
I, for one, would love for the bush to turn on the Christmas lights in Albania too... never mind that it's april...

/ah... the hu-manity ...
Anonymous said…
YEI! I'm so excited. The president of the United States of America is coming to visit us!
Unfortunately look who will have the privilege to meet him, Berisha. I hope he behaves and doesn't say anything dumb.
Sokol said…
Anybody bothers to make a connection between Kosova and President Bush's visit? U.S.-led NATO forces entered Kosova on June 10th, the same day our President visits Albania. I expects a hero's welcome from all Albanians living in the Balkans, and I expect many Kosova Albanians to travel to Tirana. With lots of American flags and lots of love and gratitude for this country of ours.
our man said…
Though it is fair to say, Sokol, that many Republicans were opposed to 'Clinton's war' in Kosovo. Candidate Bush himself was tentatively supportive, but not enthusiastically so.

After the conflict ended Bush's position was that US forces should get out of the region as soon as possible, leaving 'peacekeeping' to the Europeans. (This despite the fact that the majority of the forces that entered Kosovo in June were European - all KFOR commanders have been European).

America's telling contribution was in the air, not on the ground.

Also, while the peace agreement was ratified by the UN on June 10 and Serb forces signalled their departure on that date, NATO forces did not actually enter Kosovo until June 12.
Anonymous said…
In the 90s Bush senior came to Albania by boat and visited Vlora with Berisha. Maybe they were planning the oleoducts. They were both dressed casually, but Berisha had a tie over his t-shirt =)
Senior Bush said that his grandfather had Albanian ancestry from the Bush-es of Fieri!
Anonymous said…
Albania will be one of his last stops in Easter Europe. Apart from giving us publicity now that the Kosovo status is being decided, I think that the missiles issue is the main reason.

Sokol, bring some Uk flags, too!

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Welcome to Our Man in Tirana. I moved to Tirana, capital of Albania, in October 2005 and left in October 2007. This blog is a mix of photographs, reports, links, impressions and, undoubtedly, prejudices relating to the city and the country.

Since I am no longer in Tirana I am no longer updating this blog. However, there are over 300 posts covering this two year period and I hope that they are still of some interest.

So if you are curious about Albania or if you are planning to visit I hope this blog will be of value.

Miss Globe 2007

On Saturday, we were at the Rogner meeting with an expat friend who was leaving Tirana. It was breakfast time, and as our friend was finishing his tea the breakfast room started to fill up with over-dressed (or under-dressed) young women wearing blue sashes. These were the contestants for the Miss Globe 2007 beauty pageant being held in Tirana tonight at the Palace of Congresses. High heel boots and mini-skirts - or in a couple of cases micro-skirts, or possibly just belts - have never struck me as obvious breakfast attire, but the girls seemed happy enough tottering and wobbling around with their tea and toast. I'm not sure why they were wearing their sashes - perhaps in case they forgot which country they came from.
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