RE: Fico rejected by European socialists, Volume 12, Number 26, July 3-July 9
Granted I don't know much about Slovakia's situation before 2000 or Slovak politics. When I ask, I often get "they're all a bunch of corrupt egoists".
However, I must agree with President Gašparovič that the new government should at least be given a chance to prove itself. After all, parties often become much less extreme once they belong to the ruling coalition. Just look at the LPF in the Netherlands or its counterpart in Austria.
Truthfully, I would have liked to see a less controversial coalition as well, but I am nonetheless quite curious about what this new government will manage to achieve.
Personally, I think the SNS's presence will mean the problems with ethnic minorities will finally actually be addressed. And I assume the other coalition partners, as well as the opposition and the international community, will present a counterweight that will force the issue to be treated in a civilised and democratic manner.
As for the socio-economic aspects, I think Dzurinda's policy wasn't that bad, had he not forgot about the "social bagage" Slovakia was left with after almost half a century of Soviet Communism. In my opinion, he was so focussed on changing Slovakia into a modern, prosperous country, he ignored the people who, for various reasons, couldn't fit. The vigour with which Fico intends to undo Dzurinda's achievements does not reassure me either, though.
But as I said, I would like to see the new government given a chance. I hope it can strike a balance between moving into the future and dealing with the past.
17. Jul 2006 at 0:00