The Kosovo War was an armed conflict in Kosovo, in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, which involved Yugoslav government forces, the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), and NATO, between 1998 to 1999.
Criticism of the war
Both Sides Violated International Law. International law was blatantly violated as NATO started the bombing campaign while the majority of the mainstream did not provide much objective coverage. NATO's own mandate says that it falls under jurisdiction of the UN, but instead it was totally by-passed. Even the US Congress had not approved war. Before the bombing, rather than there being an unusually bloody conflict, the KLA (Kosovo Liberation Army) was not engaged in a widespread civil war against Yugoslav forces and the death toll among all concerned (including ethnic Albanians) skyrocketed after the NATO intervention.
Support for war
The absence of war did not mean the presence of peace between Albanians and Serbians however, as the Serbs murdered 1500 Albanians and displaced 270,000 before the NATO intervention and they practiced systematic repression of the Albanian population through constitutional changes by the Milosevic regime that imposed a racial segregation in Kosovo. The Milosevic regime inexcusably cracked down on the Muslim Kosovars and KLA. The indictments for war crimes against Milosevic and members of his regime were right on, as they inflicted terrible atrocities on the Kosovars. Yet, again, the mainstream media ignored some of NATO's own violations of international humanitarian law. Also, the double standard of the humanitarian claim was not looked into.
The United Nations Charter does not allow military interventions in other sovereign countries with few exceptions which, in general, need to be decided upon by the United Nations Security Council; this legal enjoinment has proved controversial with many legal scholars who argue that though the Kosovo War illegal, it was still legitimate
Support for the Kosovo War and, in particular, the legitimacy of NATO's bombing campaign came from a variety of sources. Every member of NATO, every EU country, and all of Serbia's neighbors supported military action. The NATO military intervention was illegal, but legitimate. The human rights violations committed in Kosovo provided a ground for an intervention, but NATO did not have the backing of the United Nations Security Council and therefore it was illegal.