by Saso ORDANOSKI
These are dangerous symptoms of the sinking of two largest political parties in power, the VMRO-DPMNE, and the PDSh, towards the defeat in the coming elections. Apparently aware of their forthcoming loss, they seem to have reached some sort of an agreement with the goal of "saving what can be saved". The statement issued by the PDSh after the shootout around the restaurant Dora in Tetovo unusually openly states that. Among other, the statement claims that the shootout was an attempt to assassinate leaders of the PDSh and prevent their continued coalition with the VMRO-DPMNE. Besides, their shared "dirty" baggage is so large and indivisible, that it is difficult to assume that they would seek, or that someone else would seek them for a coalition partner after the September elections.
However, the political degradation of these two political parties is taking a different course.
Xhaferi's position is very sensitive. For a while treated as the smartest ethnic Albanian politician in the Balkans (as Solana implied on one occasion), his "reputation" is now being overshadowed by Ahmeti's efficiency and by crime, personal enrichment and corruption within the PDSh, rife under Xhaferi's leadership. Even the mystery of his illness does not anymore protect him from undignified attacks.
After various scandals regarding the corrupt nature of Georgievski's regime, present in the Macedonian public since the "golden days" of Cile's billion and OKTA, recently Vest published a shocking story that Georgievski's sister-in-law is building a huge luxurious house at an attractive location in Vodno. Published documents show without doubt that the owner of the villa is the sister of Snezana Georgievska, Ms. Sonja Takovska. The authorities were gripped by panic, returned threats with lawsuits, and issued denials, several "semi-competent" ministers were forced to lie in public, but the facts remained mercilessly incriminating for Prime Minister's family.
In parallel, Dnevnik published an even more shocking series of articles about numerous companies set up by Prime Minister's wife and involved in all sorts of very suspicious registrations, re-registrations, privatization and deals that, to say the least, do not become people with honest intentions, feeling of political responsibility and any idea of the meaning of the term "the conflict of interest". After these public exposes, Georgievski's panic, frustration and anger simply exploded! Prime Minister's closest collaborators met and came up with a solution - a "counterattack". Ljube Boskovski, always a loyal executor of Georgievski's ideas, hastily "activated" the infamous "indictment" in connection with the assassination attempt at [former president] Gligorov, in for him characteristic, tragicomic manner, which made it obvious that the sole purpose of the new "scandal" was to redirect the public attention away from the scandals related to the Georgievski family.
Nevertheless, in the process, Georgievski made a move with long-ranging consequences. He instructed Boskovski to announce the activation of the indictment in Sofia [in Bulgaria], and make sure to stress that Bulgaria has absolutely nothing to do with the assassination attempt of president Gligorov. Naturally, Boskovski has not idea who the assassin is, nor who his accomplices or mastermind of the whole plot could be. This is clear from the presented indictment. However, Bulgaria is now officially acquitted, regardless of possible real implication, involvement or inspiration for true assassins. Thus, besides internal confusion created by Boskovski, Georgievski is trying to improve some of his foreign-political positions, shaken up by the assassination attempt on Gligorov's life.
This speech by Trajkovski was welcomed by the public, both here and abroad (US State Department officially praised the speech a day later), and shamed the Prime Minister as much as if he were berated by George Bush personally! New accusations followed soon, announced by who else but Boskovski (and were therefore tragicomic and silly). According to Boskovski, Trajkovski was the most corrupt politician in Macedonia and therefore the authorities were investigating his activities during the crisis in Kosovo, when he was in charge of coordinating foreign assistance for Macedonia.
Along the way Ljube announced new indictments against "large" Macedonian directors, perennial clients of Boskovski and Staninov, while a new set of threats and pressures was reserved for the media.
Hastily, at one of the most recent sessions of the government the authorities established some sort of a state commission that is supposed to fight corruption (led by, you've guessed it!, Ljube).
These days we have been expecting that the government, hoping to deflect attention from the unpleasant situation in which it finds itself, will make the decision of launching a satellite in space with the task of investigating relations between Trajkovski, Frckoski and other corrupt and criminal opponents of the VMRO-DPMNE. As can be learned from knowledgeable sources, Ljube Boskovski will take the satellite from Macedonia to Mars and back and will then report to his boss Georgievski.
However, the prevalent atmosphere in their ranks reminds me of the last few months of Crvenkovski's and SDSM rule. First they are encouraging each other that the situation is not as bad as the media and opinion polls indicate. However, secretly, all of them are preparing to jump the ship, hiding their tracks and are preparing for "life in opposition". Both parties are full of general hypocrisy and doubt, and soon we shall see first "defections", distancing and pathetic calls for pre-electoral unity. That's politics: you're always alone, especially when you lose.