Why Europeans Say “No” to Ankara

Many Europeans appear hostile to the accession of Turkey into the European Union. But the question is – why? One of the main reasons is the fear inspired by the echoes of the ancient past.
Take Italy, perhaps the most enthusiastic supporter of Turkey’s EU bid. Italians still use, albeit in a humorous way, an old expression: “Mamma li turchi!” (“My goodness, the Turks are coming!”). This expression originates from Medieval times, when the coast of Italy endured raids from Muslim pirates (at that time, all Muslims were seen, rightly or wrongly, as Turks).
Europeans are well-aware that Vienna was sieged by the Ottomans in 1529 and 1683. However, very few remember that after the First World War, European nations not only carved-up the Ottoman Empire (Iraq to Great Britain, Syria to France, etc.), but also tried to grasp pieces of Turkey itself. Only the determination of men like Kemal Atatürk and Inönü Ismet saved Turkey from Greek, French or Italian colonialism.
A second reason for the opposition to Turkey’s admission into the European Union is wariness. Turks are not Arabs, but despite this, many in the Old Continent still don’t consider them to be “real” Europeans. Even the French president Nicolas Sarkozy stated that Turkey is “not a European country”.
Perhaps wariness is originated by the fact that Turks are, in the main, not Christian but Muslim, and at the present time the European Union is, de facto, a (post) Christian “club”.
In fact, a “spectre” is haunting Europe – the spectre of Islamization. From Spain to Austria, Sweden to France, far-right European politicians are sounding the alarm about the imminent transformation of Europe into a “Muslim continent”, a panic that recalls the “yellow peril” hysteria of their American counterparts in the first half of the twentieth century.
Take, for example, Filip Dewinter, leader of Vlaams Belang, a right-wing party calling for the secession of Flanders from Belgium. He openly stresses the necessity of being “Islamophobic”, and last year warned that “Islamophobia is not merely a phenomena of unparalleled fear, but it is the duty of everyone who wants to safeguard Europe’s future. […] Europe is a continent of castles and cathedrals, not of mosques and minarets”.
Actually, some Europeans don’t support the accession of Turkey into the European Union for reasons other than racism or fear, but rather, because they are aware of current European weaknesses. For if the “no” sounded by a small country like the Republic of Ireland towards the Lisbon Treaty can seriously stall the European integration process, then what kind of delays could Turkey potentially cause? Europeans are aware that Turkey is a proud country, with a strong cultural identity and a great commitment to its national interests. If it was capable of saying “no” to its best friend the USA during the invasion of Iraq, then it is certainly capable of responding in the negative to certain aspects of the EU agenda.
Moreover, at the present time, the Turkish economy doesn’t appear to be in very good shape: this year, its GDP is projected to contract by 5.1% , unemployment is soaring, and several regions are officially considered to be economically deprived. Why should the countries of Eastern Europe (such as Lithuania or Hungary), who have themselves been severely hit by global recession, share European funds with Turkey?
For many Europeans, Turkey’s admission into the EU concerns them not just politically or economically, but also geopolitically. Turkey, with its status as a historical bridge between Europe and the Middle East, shares borders with unstable and authoritarian countries such as Iraq and Syria, to say nothing of Iran. Does the European Union really want to extend its borders to embrace this potentially explosive region of the world? In fact, many EU member states feel that Turkey’s current status is ideal, as due to its location, it serves as a convenient “cordon sanitaire”, a buffer-zone protecting Europe from the security threats of the Middle East.
However, for Turkish citizens, perhaps the question should be – does Turkey really need the European Union? Is the government of this proud state really ready to surrender a significant piece of its sovereignity to Brussels and Strasbourg? A solution to this impasse could be the proposal advanced by the German Chancellor Angela Merkel – a privileged partnership between Turkey and Europe, making Ankara the main ally of the European Union in the Middle East. After all, sometimes a good friendship is better than a bad marriage, and it certainly avoids the potential trauma of divorce.

Ukraine Has A Lot To Learn From Finland

autore: Gabriele

ecco la versione in lingua inglese del post EUROPA SÌ, NATO NO, pubblicata dall’American Institute in Ukraine (AIU) sul suo sito
http://www.aminuk.org

The facts are frightening. In 2009, Ukraine’s GDP is expected to decline by 8 percent. Iron and aluminium exports, pillars of the national economy, are in free fall, the banking system is on the brink of collapse, and like Iceland and Latvia, the government has already requested help from the International Monetary Fund. In a nutshell, Ukraine is collapsing.

With pretty schadenfreude, former president, Leonid Kuchma, has compared the situation of his unlucky country to the tragic scenario of 1941, when the Nazis occupied Kiev (according to legend, the city brings its occupiers bad luck, prompting superstitious Polish Marshall Jozef Piłsudski to steer well clear of it).

The tremendous global recession seems to have inflicted a fatal blown on both NATO and the European Union’s hopes for Ukraine, a country in the Russian orbit. However, it would be a great defeat for the European Union to lose the former Soviet country, because if it’s true that Kiev desperately needs Brussels, then it’s also true that Brussels needs Kiev.

Why? Simply put, Ukraine, with its 47 million inhabitants (projected to rise to 54 million in 2025), its agricultural and mineral wealth, and its geographically strategic position, could be very useful to the European economy, which is afflicted by an ageing working force and is lacking in abundant natural resources. Therefore, the European Union could well suffer from the loss of potentially the richest country in the the whole of Eastern Europe.

Historically, Ukraine has often been a tempting presence for European powers: everybody – from the Austrians to the Russians, the Germans to the Poles – has tried to gain control of the region, because whoever controls the vast Ukrainian plains controls the gates of Eurasia. The Hun hoardes and the Mongol armies who terrorized Europe in the Middle Ages knew this, as did the Nazis when they invaded the Soviet Union.

Of course, Europe can’t ignore Russia’s interest in Ukraine. If the Soviet Union had won the Cold War, and if Texas had become an independent state and adhered to the Warsaw Pact, what would have been the reaction of U.S. government? After all, we must remember that after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the Americans promised the Russians that NATO would not expand.

Even Jack F. Matlock, U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union between 1987 and 1991, stated that Gorbachev was given a “clear commitment that if Germany united, and stayed in NATO, the borders of NATO would not move eastward”.

Additionally, in April 2008, Vladimir Putin openly stated that “Ukraine is not even a state! What is Ukraine? Part of its territory is in Eastern Europe. On the other hand, we gave them the most important part of their country”. In other words, Europeans, Ukrainians and Russians must reach a compromise that is respectful of the will of the Ukrainian people, the worries of Russia and the needs of Europe.

It must be noted that most Ukrainians want their country to become a member of the European Union, like their neighbours Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. Indeed, it seems that European aspirations unite Ukrainians of the Western regions and Russophones of the Eastern ones.

Through European funds, Kiev could modernize crumbling infrastructures and boost an economy that can’t depend solely on its iron, steel industries and chemical industries. Likewise, European institutions could strengthen the young democracy, thus stabilizing the whole country.

Regarding Ukraine’s NATO adhesion, the French, Germans and Italians are very cautious. After all, is it really necessary that Ukraine, a self-declared neutral country since 1990, should become a member of an alliance openly founded to “keep the Russians out, the Americans in, and the Germans down”? If, during the short war between Georgia and Russia, the latter didn’t send its tanks to Tblisi, capital of a fragile country with just 4.6 million inhabitants, is it really feasible that there could be a Russian invasion of Ukraine, a country far bigger and stronger than Georgia?

Ukraine’s NATO adhesion would divide not only the Ukrainian people (deeply undermining local and regional stability), but also the Europeans, and would cause a serious strain in the relationship with Moscow, the main energy supplier of the Old Continent (and the biggest trade partner of Ukraine).

What is needed is a decent compromise, a “grand bargain” in the best European diplomatic tradition. Ukraine deserves the chance to enter the European Union, thus joining the world’s most successful community of prosperous and democratic counties. But, in order to respect Russian security and its own sovereignity, it should not join NATO.

Ukraine should learn from Finland, a rich, neutral democracy that has very good relations with its neighbour Russia. Because, as said by Ukrainian farmers, “if you chase two hares at the same time, you will catch neither of them”.

DEALING WITH THE PAST 2

autore: Ruggero

Dealing with the past:
how the judicial approach to constitutional continuity after a regime change may affect the interpretation of the rule of law.
An overview on two Eastern Europe countries: Hungary and Czech Republic.

3. Analyses of the decisions of the Courts

Both Czechoslovakian (and Czech) and Hungarian legislations were claimed to be inconsistent with the respective Constitutions, and were thus examined by the two Constitutional Courts.
But the outcoming decisions could have hardly been more different.

3.1
The Czechoslovakian Court upheld the 1991 “lustration” law as constitutional, but for one provision (that included even mere candidates to be secret informer in the range of application of the law). The decision was laid on two main grounds. First of all the Court argued that a State has the right to defend itself from the danger that could come by letting in place those people who were committed with the previous regime, and might be not loyal to the new one. Besides it would be unfair to let those people retain positions and privileges they obtained only for having been members or supporters of the Communist Party.
The second point was that provisions like those at judgment, which applied to a very vast range of professions, were justified by the current circumstances: the occurring transition from Communism to democracy required special measures to face the special issues that the transition itself raised.
The later Constitutional Court of Czech Republic upheld the amendments that extended the validity of the law, on the basis that even if the extraordinary circumstances were elapsed, the State still had the right to protect itself.
The decision of the Czechoslovakian Court, focusing on the necessity of special protection for the new democracy due its frailty in the first years after the transition, stresses the idea of a need for a total discontinuity between the two regimes. The fact that a new constitutional system took place, and that the old Communist Party no longer existed was not enough for the protection of democracy. The State had to be cleansed of those people who might be tempted to act to restore the old power or simply might not share the values of democracy.
Even if the sentence does not consider explicitly this point of view, it may be said the the Court approved the idea, embedded in the law, that the changed constitutional system required the discontinuity of the people holding key positions in State administrations.

The Hungarian Court acted a different role in the shaping of the “lustration” legislation. The first law, in 1994, provided for the inquiry of people holding certain roles in the public administrations, to be conducted by ad hoc panels, to discover which of them had been a collaborator of the old secret service or had been a member of the Arrow Cross Party. Those who happened to be recognized as having played these role could avoid the publication of this information by resigning from their job, but were free to keep it as there was no further sanction.
Notwithstanding this “light” features, the law was challenged before the Constitutional Court and dismissed as partially unconstitutional.
The Hungarian Court stated the opposite than what the Czechoslovakian did. It declared that, as the transition had already took place, there was no need of special protection for the democratic system. Thus it was not possible to act as to comply with extraordinary circumstances, and the law had to be consistent with the normal democratic principles. A “lustration” was still possible for people who held very critical position in the state organization, but only as emerged from the balancing of two rights: the general right to the revealing of informations of public interest on one side, and the right of self determination and privacy on the other.
So it was possible to conduct a certain screening among public persons, but it was necessary to allow every citizen to check his own files, and to provide protections for the personal data of the people who were spied (and the statute did not comply with this right, that concerned people’s right to privacy and self-determination).
The Court also stated some remarks about the too vast range of positions involved in the scrutiny.
The Parliament enacted a new law in 1996 that took account of the Court’s suggestions.
The Hungarian Court refused to apply the special circumstances theory in its examination of the law, because it stated that the transition was already over. Whatever discontinuity had there been between the Communist regime and democracy, that passage was in the past and no longer relevant. Where the Czechoslovakian Court used the “special times – special measures” rationale to upheld much stricter provisions, and even as a mean to promote some kind of material justice over the past happenings, the Hungarian Court kept a close observance of the “normal” democratic standards, showing its favor for the respect of the rule of law even in its formal aspects. We must recognize, however, that the Hungarian law was enacted some years later the fell of Communism, thus a need for protection of the democratic state was probably felt less compelling, whereas the Czechoslovakian rules were passed just in the immediate times after the transition. It is true that the Czech Constitutional Court upheld even the amendments that rendered those rules perennial, but the Court only had to stick to the precedent of the former Czechoslovakian Court.

3.2
As for the statute of limitation issue, the Czech Law on the Lawlessness of the Communist Regime and Resistance to It was challenged as well before the Constitutional Court .
The petitioners argued that the provisions contained in the Prologue and in the first part of the statute, that deemed the whole Communist regime during the years 1948 – 1989 as illegal, and declared the people who supported that regime responsible for the crimes committed by it, was unconstitutional, due to the following reasons. First of all a statute establishing by force of law that an entire historical period in a given country was illegal would have restricted further academic and historical investigations of that period, and thus would infringe the right of free research and the right of expression of personal opinions, which could be treated as illegal if departing from the statutory imposed vision of history.
Secondly it established a collective responsibility, and that was against the principle of personal liability in the criminal law.
Lastly the petitioners argued that the Czechoslovakian Republic (and then the successive Czech Republic) was the heir of the former Czechoslovakian Communist state: there had been a formal and substantial continuity between those two entities, in both domestic and international legislation. So it was not possible to claim the old Communist State as illegal at all.
At the same way, suspending the statute of limitation would have been against the respect of rule of law, which was one of the fundamental principles of the Czech Constitution, and that reviving criminal liabilities that had already expired would have infringed their personal rights and the certainty of law.
The Court rejected the first argument saying that the statute only provided a moral and political, rather then juridical, sentence about the Communist regime. It was a declaratory statement concerning the political will of the Parliament to consider the past events as unlawful and to act consequently. Thus it was an act of freedom of speech held by statutory means, and there was no reason to limit the right of free opinion and speech of the Parliament to non statutory acts. Besides it did not provide any sanction for the violation of this provision, reinforcing the view of its merely declaratory nature. So it did not restrain other people’s right of speech or research.
For the same reason it was not a mean to establish a joint criminal liability for past members or supporters of the Communist Party, because it did not provide any sanctions for those persons. It was only a mean to introduce a reflection on individual political responsibilities.
The reasoning of the Court became more sharp and complicate in the rejection of the third argument. The Court admitted that a formal continuity had took place, as the former legislation was receipted and the international obligations pending over the old state were assumed by the new one. But declared that legal continuity did not imply a continuity in values. The new Constitution was not neutral to values, and it required the application of the democratic values in the interpretation of the law. Thus the rule of law, the principle of legality, could not be intended as merely formal legality, it did not bind to the literal interpretation of the law; it was necessary to take account of the substantive purposes of the law as well.
Besides the Court argued that a democratic state was based on the principle of legitimacy, that means that to be legitimate a democracy had to be sustained by the majority of the population. As the Communist regime did not encounter the favor of the majority of the population, it was not legitimate. So the old legislation could not be considered as legitimate only because it already existed as positive law: legality was not a substitute for legitimacy.
For these reasons the Court refused to define the law as unconstitutional.
In relation to the part of the statute that suspended the statute of limitation, the petitioners founded their arguments mainly on the ground of legal certainty, stating that people whose liabilities were already expired could not see them revived. It was not their fault if they were not correctly prosecuted, and it was unfair to place on their shoulders the responsibilities of others, namely the old regime who did not do its job well.
The Court answered that, even if within the old regime legislation there were provisions proclaiming the respect of legality, the total unlawfulness of that regime made them dead letter. All State powers were run by the Party, and according its own, unwritten, rules, thus the positive law was completely disregarded. In such a situation there was no possible legal certainty. Those who committed criminal acts with a political motive were not relaying on the expiration of their liability within a certain period, they were relaying on the failure of the formal legal system of that time in punishing them. So it was not unfair to punish them, after having re-established a constitutional system truly respectful of the rule of law. Saying it with the words of the Court “it would be an infringement of the continuity of written law, if the violations of the law which were committed under the protection of the state could not be even now criminally prosecuted” . In this case the Court appealed directly to the formal continuity of law rationale.
The Court went further in its reasoning, arguing that the statute did not establish any new type of offence, other then those already provided in the old law, nor extended the original limitation period, that still remained of twenty years. Beside the criminal law stated that if due to the absence of the convicted person or due to legal impediment a regular trial could not have been held, the limitation period for a crime was suspended until the removal of these impediments. And that was exactly what happened during the Communism: some crimes were not submitted to regular trials due to the incapacity of the legal system to act consistently with its own provisions, and this incapacity was determined by the political will that held the power in those days. So there had been effective legal impediment. Thus the statute did not revive the liabilities for those crimes, because the limitation periods had not run properly. In this sense the statute was a declaratory provision, more then a constitutive one.
Finally the statute of limitation was not part of the procedural law, and not of the substantive criminal law. So the irretroactivity of the criminal law could not be claimed in such case.

As said before, the Hungarian so called Zetenyi – Takacs Act of 1991 stated that the limitation periods for crimes of treason and manslaughter, that were not prosecuted for political reason during the years from 1944 to 1990, were to be considered as not run. The law was similar to the Czech law, but it had a narrower field of application, as it referred only to the two nominated crimes.
The Court in its reasoning invoked the respect of the rule of law rationale, arguing that in a constitutional state the law had to comply with the text of the Constitution and with the values that the Constitution itself carried.
This premise seemed to resemble in some way the premise made by the Czech Court about the need of applying the law under the light of the constitutional values. But the outcome was utterly different: the Hungarian Court declared that the transition between the Communist regime and the democracy had took place under the basis of legality. So there was no reason to distinguish between laws enacted before or after the Constitution, nor to apply different standards in their interpretation. Thus the Court found the provision under examination not consistent with the principle of legal certainty, which was a corollary of the principle of the rule of law entrenched in the Constitution (a corollary that the Court itself had deduced from the constitutional text).
Besides the “political reasons” recalled in the statute as a requisite for the suspending effect taking place were too vague, to provide a sufficient clearness in the prediction of the application of the law.
Subsequent parliamentary acts on the same matter, an authoritative resolution and a modification of the Criminal Procedure Law, were equally challenged in front of the Court and declared unconstitutional .
Finally, in 1993, the legislature enacted a law with a narrower purpose, stating that war crimes and crimes against humanity were crimes under international law, and thus were not subject to statute of limitation.
With regards to this act the Court kept the general principle that extending the statutes of limitations was forbidden. But it recognized two exceptions, when there had not been a statute of limitations provision at the time the crime was committed, and when the crime was covered by international law, being a war crime or a crime against humanity. As Hungary was bound to the respect of international law by article 7 of the Constitution, and had signed the New York Convention, which did not provide for limitation periods for war crimes or crimes against humanity, it was possible to prosecute such crimes.
The Court only asked the Parliament to conform the statute to th international law notions of those crimes.
The Hungarian Constitutional Courts then kept a strict observance of formal legality; the only exception allowed was anyway based on the ground of legality, in that case on the ground of respecting international law as imposed by the Constitution.

AGGIORNAMENTI IN DIRETTA DA TEHERAN

fonte: Enrico

Per una copertura in diretta e gli aggiornamenti e il link riguardo alla rivolta in Iran, segui Enrico su Twitter. Lo trovi online all’indirizzo http://twitter.com/enricolabriola

Aggiornamenti hour-by-hour sulla situzione a Tehran
Grazie
EL

COLPO DI STATO A TEHERAN

autore: Enrico

Ricevo e inoltro da più di una fonte in Iran (scusate la schematicità, ma è quanto di meglio riesca per la chiarezza):

* Nella notte fra il 12 e il 13 Giugno, dopo un’affluenza record del 82% (considerata un forte segnale di una vittoria riformista), Mousavi all’ora di chiusura dei seggi convoca la stampa denunciando brogli (milioni di persone a cui è stato negato il diritto di voto, osservatori delle liste d’opposizione cacciati dai seggi, 7 milioni di schede in più stampate, irregolarità nelle commissioni elettorali). Nonostante questo, il 54% dei voti, secondo le proiezioni sono per lui. Pochi minuti dopo, una conferenza stampa convocata a sorpresa dalla commissione elettorale, dichiara che con una percentuale di schede scrutinate di oltre il 20% (ma molti seggi erano ancora aperti per votare), il 69% dei voti va ad Ahmadinejad, e solo una percentuale sotto il 30 a Mousavi. Nella notte, i supporter dei due candidati si confrontano nelle strade di Tehran, entrambi convinti di aver vinto. Mousavi ribadisce che ci sono state irregolarità e brogli, e che il risultato non è quello vero. Ahamdinejad accetta la vittoria e proclama di essere il presidente di tutti, liquidando le accuse come infondate (come fa il capo della Commissione Elettorale, dicendo che sarebbero considerate uno ‘scherzo’ dagli iraniani). Ahamdinejad incassa anche l’appoggio della Guida Suprema Khamenei, che lo proclama vincitore e liquida le accuse di brogli.
* Scontri di piazza e proteste a Tehran contro l’esito delle elezioni proseguono da due giorni, facendo seguito alla richiesta di annullamento e di indagine da parte di Mousavi. Un poliziotto è stato salvato dal linciaggio dopo le violente repressioni e gli arresti di dimostranti. La tensione è palpabile e la polizia in assetto antisommossa ha sparato in aria per disperdere i manifestanti, ma ci sarebbe già il primo morto civile dovuto ad un colpo d’arma da fuoco. Anche i Pasdaran e i Basji (milizia di studenti islamici in borghese) hanno contribuito nel riportare l’ordine. I membri dell’opposizione denunciano anche la presenza di ‘provocatori’ in borghese che danno fuoco a esercizi commerciali e banche.
* I membri dell’opposizione hanno le case sorvegliate e molti sono stati arrestati preventivamente dalle autorità. La polizia ha fatto irruzione nella casa di Mustafà Tajzadeh, ex ministro degli interni e capo del fronte riformatore Musharekat, e l’ha arrestato. Anche lo stato maggiore del Musharekat è agli arresti, compreso il fratello di Khatami. Ora antrambi sembra siano stati rilasciati.
* La moglie di Mousavi al telefono pare aver confermato che la protesta continuerà su un piano pacifico. Forse martedì o mercoledì sarà proclamato uno sciopero generale contro il risultato delle elezioni.
* Un comizio di Mousavi con i suoi sostenitori a Tehran è stato vietato, e Mousavi ha rimandato la manifestazione, accogliendo l’invito di Khamenei ad ‘agire con calma, usando le vie legali’
* Alle troupe straniere è proibito filmare gli scontri (due giornalisti olandesi e alcuni spagnoli espulsi). I giornalisti tedeschi di ZDF e ARD sono guardati a vista da miliziani. Agli stranieri non vengono prolungati i visti per restare nel paese, e alle frontiere le procedure di transito sono molto insaprite.
* La BBC e altre reti estere riportano un oscuramento dei loro canali e delle radio estere in Iran, per limitare la diffusione di informazioni sulla rivolta.
* Oltre 170 oppositori sono stati incarcerati, considerati o implicati nelle proteste nel centro di Tehran o ‘ispiratori’ di esse.
* Mousavi è praticamente agli arresti, in quanto gli viene impedito di comunicare con attivisti politici. Solo poche telefonate sono permesse
* La polizia sta setacciando le case e gli ospedali in cui si crede vi siano membri dell’opposizione (in un ospedale ha anche aggredito il personale, lo riferisce il segretariato del Consiglio nazionale della resistenza in Iran). Lunedì mattina sono stati arrestati circa 200 familiari di giovani manifestanti incarcerati: si erano radunati davanti al tribunale rivoluzionario di Teheran per chiedere la loro liberazione.
* Il giornale di Mousavi, Kalameh Sabz, è stato messo al bando. Domenica la polizia, scrive il quotidiano riformista Sarmayeh, ha fatto irruzione nella sede del giornale, ha effettuato una perquisizione e sigillato l’edificio. Anche il giornale Velayat è stato costretto a sospendere la pubblicazione, e il giornale Asr Eghtesad era stato censurato già sabato mattina poiché prevedeva di titolare «Il verde della primavera prosegue», con riferimento al colore del partito di Mousavi.
* Da domenica è vietato l’accesso a YouTube, dove erano stati pubblicati filmati degli scontri a Teheran ripresi con i telefoni cellulari. Le linee per le interurbane e le connessioni internet vanno e vengono (ieri per quasi tutta la giornata Tehran era isolata telefonicamente) a causa del blocco alle comunicazioni.
* Da Tabriz, Ahwaz, Orumieh, Rasht, Isfahan giungono notizie di manifestazioni di massa per Mousavi, e nelle prime due i risultati sono apparsi subito palesemente incongruenti: Mousavi, di origine azera, è amatissimo nella zona a maggioranza azera del paese, che oltretutto è storicamente una zona riformista. I risultati ufficiali parziali parlerebbero anche qui di una vittoria di Ahamadinejad.

Un Golfo imbottigliato

autore: Enrico

Il Golfo Persico non vedeva tanto traffico di navi militari dai tempi di Iraqi Freedom, il nome affibiato dall’amministrazione Bush alla guerra del 2003. In quel caso però le navi che scorrazzavano nel Golfo erano solo quella della US Navy, ora invece le insegne che appaiono sulle fiancate non potrebbero essere più diverse. Il 27 Maggio sono attraccate al porto di Manama, sede della Quinta Flotta USA, alcune navi russe. Seguite poco dopo dall’arrivo nel porto di Salalah (Oman) da altre navi russe, presenti per la prima volta da decenni nel Golfo. Il loro arrivo è stato coordinato tra comandi navali Russi e comandi Iraniani. È la prima volta che una nave russa attracca e fa rifornimento nello stesso porto in cui fa base la marina statunitense. Mosca ha così inaugurato una presenza -non si sa se duratura o meno- della sua marina militare nel Golfo Persico. Contemporaneamente, Obama ha progressivamente ridotto la presenza della marina statunitense nel Golfo per aiutare la ripresa del dialogo con l’Iran, generando un’atmosfera positiva per i colloqui. Nel Golfo non è presente nemmeno una portaerei USA, come non accadeva da molti anni a questa parte. La mossa russa ha seguito di poco l’inaugurazione nel Golfo -il 25 Maggio- di una base militare navale francese, nei pressi di Abu Dhabi. Se anche i francesi, che hanno importanti interessi nell’area (Iran e Libano in primis), possono rompere il monopolio USA nelle acque del Golfo, perchè la Russia (impegnata diplomaticamente e finanziariamente soprattutto sul dossier Iraniano) non può stabilire una presenza in quelle acque? Sicuramente lo scenario resta nel complesso tranquillo, ma certamente l’attivismo delle grandi potenze intorno all’area del Golfo spiega quanto sia importante per molti essere presenti e contare in quella zona chiave del globo.

LIBERA STAMPA IN LIBERO (?) STATO

Autore: Enrico

Sembrava aver riaperto il quotidiano riformista ‘Yas No’, dopo 6 anni dalla sua prima chiusura, dovuta ad un articolo della minoranza parlamentare riformista in cui si criticava la posizione della Guida Suprema Ayatollah Khamenei riguardo alla non ammissione di molti candidati riformisti alle elezioni 2004. Ma non è durato nemmeno 2 giorni il sogno di Mohammad Naimipur, di sostenere il candidato riformista Mir-Hossein Mousavi attraverso le colonne del suo giornale. Il procuratore di Tehran Saeed Mortazavi, soprannominato il ‘macellaio della stampa’ ne ha ordinato la chiusura dopo un solo numero, colpendo duramente il campo riformista che ha visto decimati i suoi giornali a partire dal 1990 dallo stesso Mortazavi e che ha difficile accesso alle Tv, che in Iran sono tutte statali. I giornalisti, che si aspettavano prima o poi la chiusura, sono sorpresi della tempestività del provvedimento: forse -dicono- non è piaciuto l’articolo di apertura, intitolato ‘Khatami-Mousavi per l’Iran’. Mousavi sembra essere il principale avversario del presidente Mahmoud Ahmadinejad nelle elezioni del 12 Giugno. Molti osservatori stanno vedendo le avvisaglie di un irrigidimento dei conservatori per paura che in seguito all’elezione di un riformista cambi la struttura del potere in Iran. I riformisti che fanno capo a Khatami e all’ex premier Mousavi non hanno al momento alcuna pubblicazione permessa nelle edicole, al contrario dei conservatori che ne possono vantare decine. Alcuni rapporti parlano del lancio entro pochi giorni da parte dello stesso Mousavi di un suo giornale, ‘Kalameh Sabz’ (Mondo verde). Intanto il 17 maggio il ministro della Cultura ha esortato la stampa a promuovere l’attenzione e la mobilitazione sulle elezioni, ma ‘a fare attenzione a non rompere il orientamenti etici e culturali della società quando riportano notizie concernenti le elezioni’. Un criptico messaggio che potrebbe essere un avvertimento a chi tra i riformisti spera in una corsa priva di ostacoli.

Fonti

Eurasianet.org, Iranian reformist daily banned one day after relaunch, 17 May 2009
http://www.eurasianet.org/departments/insight/articles/pp051709.shtml