Thursday, May 30, 2024

Zaev`s Karma

In the 2016 parliamentary elections, the biggest political prize for the “bombs” was paid by Ali Ahmeti’s DUI, whose votes and mandates were halved, while the wiretaps published by Zaev did not damage VMRO-DPMNE as much as expected. . Unlike in 2016, when Zaev was in charge of solving the victims of his “bombs”, now he himself is a victim of wiretapping.

Author: Xhelal Neziri

Attempts to eavesdrop on political opponents, and then use the same wiretaps in the run-up to the election, are not new and are only happening in North Macedonia. Since 1972, when the Watergate wiretapping scandal erupted in the US, the use of espionage tools to gain access to discrediting material for opponents has become a powerful tool in the hands of political parties. In that scandal, it was revealed that the then president from the Republican Party, Richard Nixon, had eavesdropped on the election headquarters of the Democratic Party. The affair prompted Nixon to resign as president, an act that was seen as very important in defending democratic values. This resignation seems to have given a good lesson to politicians, not only in the US, but also in other democracies that the use of espionage tools to fight the political opponent is neither ethical nor moral, much less democratic.

However, the recent campaigns for the presidential election again brought to the surface the attempt to give a decisive blow to the opponent and to win the match in the first round. Breaking the email password of Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in 2016 and publishing private letters provoked strong reactions in the American public. Especially when it was revealed that Clinton had used her email and private computer for official communications, which was considered a violation of national security and of American diplomats around the world.

On the other hand, wiretapped material discrediting Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was released to the media in order to strengthen Clinton’s position on the eve of those elections. In the wiretapping, Trump’s sexist comments are heard about a woman he was supposed to meet. How much these bombs affected the weakening of the opponent or for the victory of Trump, there is no completely accurate measurement.

The striking wiretapping force was shown in places where their publication led to the resignation of governments. The affair involving former Austrian Deputy Prime Minister Heinz-Christian Strache, leader of the right-wing FPO party, led to the resignation of the government and new parliamentary elections. Strache was filmed at a villa in Spain as he talked to alleged Russian businesspersons to favor them in the Austrian market.

In the Balkans, it seems that espionage methods are seen as a “knockout” for the political opponent – victory without much effort or with one blow. The intercepted materials that are not submitted to the Prosecutor’s Office and other competent institutions, but are published in the media, have a political and not a legal purpose. In cases where the prosecution and the judiciary are caught and do not accept or react to those materials, then their publication is to some extent legitimate. The “Pronto” affair in Kosovo, the wiretaps with former Albanian Police Minister Saimir Tahiri or the “Truth about Macedonia” affair were the result of the institutions’ failure to react, but they were also used for political purposes.

After being successful, especially in North Macedonia, wiretaps are slowly becoming the norm of political clashes, leaving aside the debate over the platforms, ideas and visions that parties offer during the election campaign. As July 15 approaches, these materials are increasingly being released on various Internet platforms to degrade, devalue, label and defeat the political opponent. The clash between SDSM and VMRO-DPMNE in this campaign was focused on this negative campaign, or black propaganda, in which case we heard a lot about their leaders Zoran Zaev and Hristijan Mickovski.

It is unknown whether these illegally eavesdropped conversations, which were also published illegally, have any impact on voters from the left or right political spectrum. All the polls show that it is difficult to persuade the traditional followers of one political party to vote for another subject, much less during the election campaign and with eavesdropping materials, otherwise known as “bombs”. The only effect they can achieve is to distract the undecided from getting involved in politics or demotivating them to vote on Election Day. This seems to be the purpose of the policy centers that publish these materials.

In the 2016 parliamentary elections, the biggest political prize for the “bombs” was paid by Ali Ahmeti’s DUI, whose votes and mandates were halved, while the wiretaps published by Zaev did not damage VMRO-DPMNE as much as expected. . In this election, it seems that the most damaged will be Zaev, the party that has won the last two election cycles, but does not have as many traditional and loyal followers as Mickovski’s party. Unlike in 2016, when Zaev was in charge of solving the victims of his “bombs”, now he himself is a victim of wiretapping.

Të fundit