Friday, August 27, 2004

Brave and Wimpish HDZ

Whether right or wrong, whether pandering to Europeans and Israel or genuine expression of anti-Fascism, decision to pull down Budak monument is one brave move by Sanader's government.

Sanader is going to be lauded (at least publicly) by overwhelming majority of Croatian political and media establishment, while the resentment among Croatian far right (and many rank-and-file members of HDZ) would continue to grow. New hate speech legislation and ideas about giving the same treatment to Tito's memorial are going to fuel political passions and broaden WW2-era divisions among Croatian people. HDZ is going to be hit hard on the next local elections while many right-wing Croatians hate Sanader more than "Yugocommunist traitors" Mesić (Mesic) and Račan (Racan).

At the same time, Sanader's party is showing less bravery when it comes to issues not related to outside image of Croatia. In the latest interwiew to Jutarnji list, Vladimir Šeks (Vladimir Seks), Sabor speaker, confirmed that his party considers not running its candidate on the next presidential elections. "The defeat of HDZ candidate could have serious political consequences for the government, prime minister, local elections", Šeks said in the interview. In other words, HDZ is scared that the defeat on presidential elections could shatter myth of HDZ invicibility and with it Sanader's authority – the only thing that keeps current various parties and HDZ factions together.

Šeks later denied that he stated that HDZ gives up its presidential bid. But Jutarnji list stood by its story.


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