Czech press survey - August 01


01.08.2014 07:27

Prague - In the half-year of its rule the Czech government coalition has generated no government crisis, but the style of its governance arouses question marks, Lukas Jelinek writes in Pravo.


Zleva místopředseda vlády pro ekonomiku a ministr financí Andrej Babiš a předseda vlády Bohuslav Sobotka před jednáním vlády, která zasedala 9. dubna v Praze. ČTK Krumphanzl Michal

The Social Democrats (CSSD) and the ANO movement of businessman billionaire Andrej Babis say and do what they deem suitable, while the junior Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL) are pushed to the back, Jelinek writes.

Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (CSSD) pursues an ostrich-like policy, the government partners frighten one another from time to time, but they prefer not to rub it in too much and the government´s stability prevails, Jelinek writes.

As a result, the Czechs have a relatively successful government of the deaf and blind who are capable without any problem of combining water with fire, believers with atheists, democrats with oligarchs, Jelinek writes.

The Czech government ANO movement of businessman Andrej Babis has twice changed its autumn local election leader in Prague, which proves that the reservoirs of personalities have been exhausted, which applies to all political parties, but ANO has one specificity, Zbynek Petracek writes in Lidove noviny (LN).

"The other parties keep their nominees at any cost, I change them," Babis told daily Mlada fronta Dnes recently. "If it shows that they are not good, I replace them," he added, which, Petracek writes, reveals the experience of a years-long chief of a firm.

Howveer, those who decide in elections are voters. The question to be asked in the election campaign is not of whether the leader of candidates is good for the firm´s chief, but of whether they are good for voters, Petracek writes.

The time when it was enough to set oneself against the Civic Democrats (ODS) to succeed in elections is over. If ANO keeps to the strategy of its Prague organisation, it could follow the path of the former Freedom Union. It had more chairmen (eight) in 13 years than how many election leaders the Prague ANO has had this year. But the difference is not that big, Petracek writes.

Russia´s reaction to sanctions will be hard and stubborn, but if it brought the West to closing its ranks, it could be the beginning of a path towards a solution, Daniel Anyz writes in Hospodarske noviny (HN).

He writes that the West has never needed agreement since the end of the Cold War more than now, Anyz writes.

If Russian President Vladimir Putin further escalates the situation instead of retreating, this would be a very hard trial for the West. Already now, some voices in Europe, including the Czech Republic, say the West has gone too far in reacting to Putin´s Russia, Anyz writes.

He writes that this shows the weakest side of the western society, which Putin knows well and on which he relies.

His fight with the West reinforces him at home, while it generates problems for European and U.S. statesmen, Anyz writes.

The already strongly divided western political scene and society continue to polarise over their attitude to Russia, Anyz writes.

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