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End of a Smer government?

The political upheaval following Jan Kuciak's and his fiancee's murder redrew the map of Slovak politics. Robert Fico stepped down as well as Prime Minister, along with other politicians implicated in the scandal, but his party remains in power. With new Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini manage to turn things around?

The end of an era is hopefully here

05/04/2018 - 00:00
For a brief moment, it might have been just “continuation of the brothel with different girls”, as former Prime Minister Fico once facetiously put it, but this government is definitely finished. Let us hope that Mr. Fico will follow the way of his assistant and disappears from politics.

February 26th was the day that an investigative journalist Mr. Ján Kuciak and his fiancée were slayed in cold blood, in their own house. Such an act was quite rightly dubbed as “unprecedented” by the media. It is true that nothing similar has occurred before in our Central European Republic. We have seen mobsters blowing up competition in broad daylight with car bombs, collaboration between mafia and the government, the kidnapping of a former President’s son, orchestrated by Slovak intelligence apparatus. But nothing like this.
First clues led to the fearsome Italian gangsters collectively known as ´Ndrangheta, because the deceased journalist Kuciak had written quite critically, to say the least, about their operations in Slovakia. Some more unhinged MPs and the opposition leader decided to claim to have found the perpetrators of this crime in his colleagues, in the governing coalition. I refused to believe or take into a consideration such mad proposal. Yes, I knew about the access that Mr. Vadala (Italian entrepreneur with ties to ´Ndrangheta) had to Prime Minister Fico through his assistant and “mutual friend” Ms. Trošková (she was allegedly the lover of both men and even engaged to Mr. Vadala). I had no illusions about Mr. Fico either (especially, after he accused the media of being “dirty anti-Slovak prostitutes“) however, I was still convinced he was a rational political actor. Not anymore.

The Disgraceful Response

I believe it is a disgrace that our elected Prime Minister would come on the television on a Sunday evening, and very demagogically do the following: first, to accuse President Kiska of being an agent of a foreign power (he said that “I do not believe that Mr. President´s speech was written in Slovakia“- referring to the President´s address to the nation, which has occurred on the same Sunday) and then reveal himself to be an anti-Semite (“Mr. Kiska has met with a man with a very suspicious name, Soros“- he continued in a statement that did not receive yet enough scorn in my opinion). His claims finally opened my eyes. I thought Mr. Fico to be a “Slovak Trump”, a player and “straight talker”, but from this moment on I was convinced that he had to go. Also, I can now see the point of the aforementioned opposition leader, Mr. Matovic. It would not surprise me if the investigation finally found that the government was behind the murder of this journalist, not the mob, or maybe they accomplished the deed in cooperation. I fully agree with the liberal opposition leader, Mr. Sulík, that “Róbert Fico is dangerous“. One thing is certain, though, all of the talk that this government was created to be “a barrage against extremism” is out the window now. Especially when these events (meaning the murder and the statements) had given the government fresh support from neo-Nazis and Stalinists in Slovakia.

The Conclusion is near

This government has proven itself to be criminal and reactionary. Smer’s (the Prime Minister’s party) contempt for democracy and civil society has been demonstrated further, when one of its MPs, Lubos Bláha, suggested that the subsequent demonstrations (legal mass protests of citizens against corruption and the government) were an anti-government plot, run by Mr. Soros. This statement alone should discredit Smer from ever holding public office again. Therefore the so called reconstruction of the government will not do, even if I were naive enough to believe that our new Prime Minister (after Mr. Fico has stepped down as a concession to his coalition partner, Most-Híd) is independent and his nominees are honest. What we need is a snap election right now. It has to be said, however, that either way, Smer is finished! For a brief moment, it might have been just been a “continuation of the brothel with different girls” (as Mr. Fico once facetiously put it), but this government is now definitely finished. Let us hope that Mr. Fico will follow the way of his assistant (who has resigned after the allegations about her mafia connections surfaced, and has never been heard of since) and disappears from the political scene for good. Oh, and hopefully he will take his party with him. The end of an era shall come, hopefully.

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