Hysni Rexha, a cheerful 51-year-old farmer in western Kosovo, loves the United States unconditionally.
"Because of America, my country exists," he declares, walking through what he calls his "wildlife garden" of caged peacocks, doves, exotic chickens and a sad hawk.
"So when Donald Trump was elected America's president, I named my favorite wolf after him."
The wolf is one of four Rexha says he found as puppies and domesticated.
"You see, Trump Wolf protects me," says Rexha from inside the cage, snuggling his wolf. "Just like President Trump will protect Kosovo."
This is not hyperbole. This small, southeastern European nation of nearly 2 million largely ethnic Albanians is the most pro-America nation in the world. In the latest Gallup World Poll, Kosovo gave the current U.S. administration a 75 percent approval rating — the top score. (The average rating globally is 30 percent, an all-time low.)
This loyalty has its roots in the brutal 1998-1999 war with Serbia. The war claimed the lives of more than 13,000 people, most of them ethnic Albanians. More than 1.4 million were displaced from their homes. Thousands of women were raped.
The United States led NATO airstrikes that drove away Serbian strongman Slobodan Milosevic's army.
"We've been through a situation where our people were at risk of being exterminated, and it was the U.S. that stood by us," says Vjosa Osmani, a lawyer and member of Kosovo's parliament. "It's extremely important that no matter who the president of the United States is, that we keep that bond strong.
Source is NPR