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Slovakia’s Maidan is on, what will it bring?

Madian here means resisting the decline of society, oligarchy in the state and an increase in extremism.

Blogger Veronika Remišová and OĽaNO chairman Igor Matovič at Friday 18 protest in Bratislava. (Source: TASR)

When Marek Maďarič, the ideological father of Smer, describes free assembly and free expression as the “maidanisation of politics”, he is approaching the Russian understanding the Ukrainian Maidan demonstrations.

Unlike the western cultural environment, of which we have been a part for a quarter century, Russia perceived the democratisation efforts in Ukraine as a coup against the ruling power orchestrated by fascist extremists. And it made sure to send its little green men to secure things.

But madianisation, the way we should perceive it and the way the West world has perceived it, is resistance against decline in society – opposing oligarchification of the state and increased extremism.

Igor Matovič, Richard Sulík, and their street performances have not contributed to a solution so far. On the contrary, they even make the state of affairs worse, by putting street and Facebook activism before practical solutions. They only strengthen the feeling of decline with non-sensical protests at a time when they have no power to change anything.

To contribute to making things better, they must become a strong and constructive opposition that not only takes up space on the squares, but positions on political issues. They have all the chance to do so, because it is the Smer of Marek Maďarič is generating the decline.

It is Smer that is responsible for the state the country is in, and as well the lack of trust in political institutions. Under its two governments, an octopus has grown through the Slovak economy and processes are controlled by interest groups. After 10 years of Smer solutions, some voters came to the decision that they prefer even neo-Nazis.

Resistance towards this state of affairs is natural. The anger of thousands of right leaning voters who believed in change is understandable. It is up to us to decide what the maidanisation will bring. Smer must finally offer sensible solutions, and not just more scandals.

Meanwhile Matovič and Sulík in the opposition must make sure that these solutions are implemented without stealing or oligarchs.

If that happens, the maidanisation of political circumstances will have been worth it. The opposite would be armed little green men – not foreign invaders, but ones with a double cross on their chests.

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