- bailout : BoC caught in the crossfire
- Opinions : Our View: CyBC should not expect the taxpayer to cover loss of...
- coercion : House was ‘coerced’ in Laiki rescue
- bailout : Troika team arrives to monitor developments
- AGM : BOC’s restructuring must be a priority, top businessmen say
- addes : Neophytou suggests removing CyBCs rights to sell ads
- Cyprus : Early ‘parliamentary’ elections in the north
- APOEL : Police gear up for cup final
- Cyprus : New parole board sworn in
- Cyprus : CyTA boss says outside interest in loan proposal
Cyprus problem takes a back seat
IF YOU’RE reading this, it’s highly likely the world did not end on December 21 as the doomsayers predicted, which should be good news to most.
However, if the Mayans were right, and we all just fell off the cosmic cliff, congratulations! Not only have you entered the seventh dimension, you also managed to take a copy of the Sunday Mail with you. Either that or you nabbed it free in the online ether world.
In any case, some bad news: the world is actually still turning and despite the relative improvements in personal hygiene over the centuries, it remains a pretty messed up place.
There was a time of bubbled bliss when residents of this island felt that the goings on in the rest of the world had no impact on the place. When sun and olives ruled the day, when the intractable, unsolvable, never-ending Cyprus problem was all we ever cared about as we poured over politicians’ statements in the daily newspapers (remember those?), digesting their special recipes for solving and ending the Cyprus problem.
This no more friends.
We are soul migrants, drifting in a rickety boat in new waters, destination unknown.
This time last year, I questioned whether the Mari disaster would end up being the catalyst for true change, introducing responsible governance, transparency, accountability and greater civic participation.
So, that didn’t happen.
The only civic movement we’ve seen much of is angry public sector workers demonstrating outside parliament against wage and benefit cuts while teachers bunk school to warn us of education’s sacrifice at the altar of fiscal austerity; all blissfully, or perhaps wilfully, unaware of the massive pressures private sector workers have been put under.
No, I have to say the year has not been a good one. The same responsibility-shifting infrastructures and unaccountable decision-making processes that Mari exposed for being riddled with dangerous holes have stayed true to form, allowing the country to sink deeper into the pit, while the vultures of the financial crisis circle overhead.
And through all this, amnesiacs abound. The public continues to tolerate the same partisan, cheap, populist level of political debate that dominates the waves.
Hmm, and I was asked to write something light and funny...
So, for old time’s sake, let’s take a very brief look at how one issue developed in 2012.
The year started with the death of one of the most important players in the Cyprus problem world, Rauf Dentkash, whose last few breaths were reportedly spent speaking Greek.
According to his daughter, from his deathbed in the north, Denktash sent a message to Christofias in Greek telling him that “this is an independent republic”.
Ironically, Denktash’s protιgι, Dervis Eroglu, has done much to ensure that the breakaway regime will never be independent, nor reunited in a common homeland. Instead, under the ‘fatherly’ or ‘motherly’ direction of Tayyip Erdogan, the daughterland or whatever you want to call it, has become increasingly and intricately meshed in an Islamic lattice more poignant for its inability to unravel than its beauty.
With the negotiations dead in the water, Eroglu has focused his time in power appealing to Muslim nations for recognition, shamelessly likening the Turkish Cypriots to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
Meanwhile, history will not be kind to Demetris Christofias. No one ever doubted his desire to reach a solution, just his capacity to do so.
As for the next president, situation normal... Alexander Downer will soon conclude the game is over and tell the UN Security Council so, only to be told the game remains the same, it’s just the players that have to change.