Czech press survey - July 24


24.07.2014 08:02

Prague - - The Czech ultra-left Communists (KSCM) and the ultra-light Dawn of Direct Democracy have their hostility to churches in common, Petr Honzejk writes in daily Lidove noviny (LN) today.


Ilustrační foto - Předseda hnutí Úsvit Tomio Okamura čeká v předsálí studia na začátek diskusního pořadu Otázky Václava Moravce, který vysílala 30. března z Prahy Česká televize. ČTK Kamaryt Michal

Both parties followed "the law of hatred" when initiating today´s extraordinary session of the Chamber of Deputies to deal with the church property restitution.

They use a very weak argument saying they have heard some authorities do not require all necessary documents from the churches that ask for the return of their property confiscated by the communist regime, Honzejk says.

"This is an almost pathetic care for a detail," especially by the Communists who otherwise do not care for "trifles." Dawn´s chairman Tomio Okamura, for his part, usually interprets laws very freely, especially those concerning the party´s accounting, Honzejk says.

This is actually a model example of political work that extremist parties manage very well - provoking hatred to create a wave of populism, he adds.

It is not surprising that the ultra-left and ultra-right attack churches. The Communists base their ideology on hatred of human individuality, initiative and industry and the ultra-right on aggression aimed at otherness, while the Christian ethos is in contradiction with both types of extremism.

And above all while an ultra-right proponent might become an ultra-left extremist and vice versa, a genuine Christian will never vote either for the KSCM or Okamura. Honzejk says.

Churches are therefore a logical and risk-free target for extremists, he adds.

Jiri Leschtina writes elsewhere in Hospodarske noviny (HN) about "a creative rebellion of the Czech chief-of-staff, General Petr Pavel, who has a chance of becoming the chairman of the NATO Military Committee.

Leschtina says it is almost unbelievable that a general from the Czech Republic whose supreme representatives reject NATO troops on Czech soil may occupy such a high post in the Alliance.

However, Pavel has excellent diplomatic and language skills and above all he has proved successful in NATO´s missions in former Yugoslavia.

Moreover, Pavel is the first Czech chief of the General Staff who has publicly stood up against never-ending cuts in military expenditure, Leschtina recalls.

It is not sure whether Pavel will succeed with his candidature.

If he did not, it would not be such a bad piece of news for the Czech military, but it would be bad for NATO that now needs such professionals as Pavel, who reminds of the generals from the first democratic Czechoslovak Republic (1918-38), "determined to defend their country and freedom despite politicians," Leschtina concludes.

A new wave of obstructions, this time orchestrated by opposition TOP 09 deputy head Miroslav Kalousek, has hit the Czech parliament, but this tool should not be used excessively, Miroslav Korecky writes in Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) today.

He adds that the current right-wing opposition wants to use filibustering to block the controversial civil service bill, but it launched this wave by the Wednesday battle about whether a tax bill can be changed after being passed.

Korecky say the instrument that was in the past considered rather extremist has become a relatively common tool of both the right-wing and left-wing opposition. In addition, the Constitutional Court has confirmed that it is fully legitimate and often the only tool in the opposition´s hands, he adds.

However, the opposition should not abuse obstructions during the approval of common bills, but it should apply them only in the case of legislations that might threaten freedom and democracy in the country, Korecky points out.

Filibustering is an efficient tool but its overuse is fortunately prevented by the fact that "to obstruct something means not to work for a common voter," and one day of the Chamber of Deputies´ session costs almost three million crowns from tax-payers´ pockets, Korecky writes in conclusion.

($1=20.391 crowns)

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