The warning in 1993 for Berisha: Albania eats politicians

2023-11-06 08:12:00, Opinione Sadik Bejko
The warning in 1993 for Berisha: Albania eats politicians
Writer Sadik Bejko

I warned Berisha in 1993: Albania eats politicians

The one who was the President of the country, actually the Prime Minister, and the chairman of the Democratic Party, Sali Berisha, had called the meeting of the National Council that emerged from the Second Assembly of the DP on November 4-5, 1993. 

Hall at the PD offices. Those elected by the Assembly and the presidents of the DP in the districts had taken their seats.

As soon as he entered his chair in the Presidium, the one who was the President of the country, in reality also the Prime Minister, and the chairman of the Democratic Party, addressed me with a word that sounded like a threat, like removing an ear, for something that I should have violated bad in the callus to that Big Boss.

- Here is SB, - he shouted.

I went, raised my hand and sat there in the last row of the hall.

The whole world turned their heads towards me.

- Listen, SB, you are wrong to say that Albania eats its politicians from time to time. You say that Albania burns politicians. The opposite is the reality. Albania loves and respects its politicians. That's how it is.

It was a completely unrelated revelation, a bolt from the blue. Unexpected for me and for the hall that did not smoke. Intuitively, I raised my hand without moving and said in a loud voice:

- Agreed.

I said it out loud for everyone to hear. So that there was no further continuation. That I felt that the Great Chief put a period at the end of his speech and did not require an explanation after what he said. He had publicly reprimanded me and did not want an answer.

The warning in 1993 for Berisha: Albania eats politicians

When we were leaving this meeting, a routine meeting where we elected officials had to approve the template that the Great Chief had set, at the door I was confronted by two of the smartest people in the room: MP and journalist M. Ç., the minister GR. With a smile on their face, with humor and cynicism together, they kindly scolded me. They told me:

- Did you hear that, SB, don't say that Albania burns its politicians. Albania loves politicians, loves them as much as prime ministers, most of them died in emigration, in prison or with a bullet in the ear. Put an earring in your ear...

I did not find out if those "villains" were with me or with the Great Chief who himself spoke and listened and did not ask for objections.

I opened the way. They viciously kicked my eye. They waved at me... no... no no.

I was stuck as the worst student in the class, I was thinking.

Where was the fun left for the Great Chief...? Albania eats politicians... Meanwhile, President Alia was in prison, Prime Minister Çarçani was in prison. We had taken Hoxha out of the grave. Prime Minister Nano in the cells of 313, was getting ready to go to Benca.

Weren't these politicians? What heresy had I uttered?

But the Great Chief was not spoken to. Azem Hajdari, sorry, used to say "Mareshalli" to the Great Chief ironically. In a meeting with three or four MPs (Gëzim Luli, Menduh Dërguti, Gjika and I don't know who else) in 1994, he predicted: Mareshalli will destroy us as a parliamentary group, will destroy Albania, and in the end will destroy the DP as well.

Azem's prophecy came true. At that time, we did not take these statements of Azem as truth. We took them as an outlet for the mllef, of the rivalry for leadership between Azem and the Great Chief. Azemi and Shefi were in a fatal love-hate relationship. Where it was not known who was more poisonous, love or hate. We then thought that this Azemi, who vents with these words, might have loved the Great Chief more than us. It is not known what momentary fun took place between them. Azemi was emotional by nature, with and without authority, a kind of foolish Cassandra who did not take prophecies seriously. The rest of us, vaguely, not so logically, we, the majority of the DP parliamentary group, still believed in the Great Chief.

The fact was that the authoritarianism of the Great Chief was becoming more and more oppressive. He felt himself unopposed. Those who had been communists, who had lived a party life before, took this kind of behavior as something normal. This is how things work in politics. The Big Boss is unchallenged, you have to obey him blindly. Politics, power did not like the independent individual, individuality. It was even against him, they flattened him. You learned this lesson in time. As a work practice, you take it as poison for the one who inhales tobacco. Will you survive in politics? Sink under the grace of a gray daily that mostly requires your dumb participation. You don't have to jump up, you have to adapt.

In this relationship of preserving individuality and adaptation, without losing any stamp of yours, perhaps the profiles of politicians are carved in the arena of politics. Yes, this required experience and inclination. We were beginners in 1992.

Let's come to what had happened, to what I had done wrong, that I had spoken without the permission of the Great Chief, with words that had not come to his taste.

I had spoken publicly at the Second Assembly of the DP in 1993.

The warning in 1993 for Berisha: Albania eats politicians

My speech had three or four columns:

First, we are a party that must forge a school of professional politicians. A historic task. Kissinger in the book "Diplomacy" says that the class of professional politicians was absent in the high politics of Germany in the first half of the 20th century. This in the politics of a great state like Germany, had brought about the fact that this country was left in the hands of political adventurers who started two world wars from which Germany was crippled and divided. The class of responsible and professional politicians is the thought, the brain, the wealth of a country.

They build policies of security, welfare, progress.

Since Albania was created as a state, it has lost political elites every 20 years. In Albania, it is called a disaster to deal with politics. Politics eats you.

I mentioned in my speech the misfortunes of Ismail Qemal bey Vlora, Noli, King Zog, etc

Second, we come from communism. As a society we must separate ourselves from his legacy. Cut, legally. Let's definitely part ways with the former employees of Sigurimi. That we can have them among us. Not only as DP, but we must do what Germany and other former communist countries did, which opened the files, the archives of communism.

Third, as a right-wing party, and from the participation of this hall where we have gathered, it is proven that we are a party of fukarenki. We must create the new class of owners; it must be a class of businessmen from what is called the national bourgeoisie. A legitimate, professional business class. Not a business of friends and associates or a business related to the world of crime.

Fourth, we live in an intellectual world inherited from communism. Schools, our history, literature, thought, even grammars, language dictionaries are all elaborated by Marxist, Enverist thought. For 50 years, people were trained with books, with the press, with institutions to think like leftists. There have been institutes, academies and universities that have done this work. This is where a lot of work comes in to get out of this kind of thinking. From the left-wing philosophical interpretation of life, of society, of the living facts of an individual's life, or the facts of great events in history

Communism together with the politicians, the owners disappeared and the previous intellectuals. In 1960, it was declared by communism that the cadre class was created in Albania, that is, the cream of the elite of thought. From 1945, thousands of students were sent to study in the higher schools of the East. The most brilliant of you laid the foundations of the country's intellectual life, institutes, academies... came writers, doctors, economists, philosophers, scientists, composers, filmmakers,... Intellectual life began anew.

What will become of the future of our intellectual life? The shifts and breaks here are catastrophic. This life is paralyzed. There was a model…now we have nothing as a project. How many people should we send abroad for studies, what qualifications do we need for these people who came from yesterday? Are they an inherited property here within us?

Not all of what I said were detailed ideas. Perhaps it was not the place to exhaustively discuss such theses. Rather, I raised them as my own intellectual concerns, not as elaborate, politically elaborated ideas.

In the Assembly and from those who I called men with sense and responsibility, I heard guys who were servile to the Great Chief. Politics as yesterday under the dictatorship, and now liked those who sweetly caressed the ears of the bosses. Also listen to speeches like those of ALP congresses. Pollution, but those who managed the affairs, approved them, the hall booed, applauded...

With my word he had brought a slightly different subject. Again the hall applauded me. Even hard.

On a break, I met dr. Ibrahim Rugova, President of Kosovo. A somewhat enigmatic figure, but we DP deputies adored Rugova. In that hall full of tumult and political fervour, He was cold and within himself, within his meditative nature, slightly withdrawn.

I stopped very respectfully. I was meeting him for the first time. When I was teaching at the University of Gjirokastra, I held two or three lecture topics on Rugova's book for Pjeter Bogdan.

Rugova greeted me for my speech there in the Assembly. He had also read me as a poet. He spoke in such a way that you left no doubt that he was paying you a compliment so casually, that he was saying words that left me speechless.

He had also expressed this good impression to Dr. Berisha at the end of the day, at the dinner that was served in his honor, a dinner attended by several MPs, our colleagues. One of these deputies, Izet SH. I was told that Berisha openly opposed Rugova. He said:

He, that SB is a poet, SB is not a politician. Rugova calmly reiterated his opinion that he liked my speech in the Assembly. Again Berisha had exploded in a clear dislike.

Why did Berisha react so angrily? I was a deputy and that was it. Without any responsibility.

Berisha had burned his ideas.

The idea that Albania eats its politicians was bad for him. That was history… and I wanted it not to be repeated.

He had also burned something else that he did not say openly. He had not liked the idea of ??separating society from communism, of separating politics from ex-spies. Berisha had the slogan: all accomplices and all co-sufferers. I was not complicit.

Nor did he like the idea of ??creating a responsible class of politicians with integrity and educated in Western schools and political thought. Berisha had the opinion that he was the alpha and omega of all. Albania did not need other men.

We had to bow our heads before him.

And here: he was opening the first meeting of the DP National Council in 1993 with a frenzy of threatening words uttered without logic. With a rage that had not softened even after two or three weeks had passed since the Assembly.

He was asking for blind obedience.

But, lo, many, many years have passed. Berisha and his family may have the most infamous political end in the history of Albanian politics. DASH accuses him of being a thief and an obstacle to democracy.

How long was our policy to reach such a humiliating end for the Berishes.

Then, in 1993, ahead of time, we warned Berisha about these things, which then came back to haunt him. For these and many other things.

Officially "non grata" from DASH, officially criminally accused by SPAK, maybe I should remind Beisha of my ominous warning that Albania eats politicians who want to impose themselves arbitrarily on it.

I had pronounced this warning then intuitively, without harm. Yes, that's how it was: a warning from the poet, as he told Rugova. Not from the politician.

17:17 Opinione Monika Stafa


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