TEN DAYS ago, two students studying journalism at the University of Cyprus visited the editor of the Cyprus Mail. They had requested a meeting by email, written by a third student that did not show up on the day, because they wanted to talk about “the Annan plan in 2004 (sic) for a project we are currently working on.”
It did not take long for the editor to understand what the students’ project was about. They were investigating whether the newspapers that supported the Annan plan had received money from the Americans and as the Mail was pro it was a prime suspect. They said they would also visit Politis and Alithia, which they had heard had also received big bucks to support the plan.
The editor, being a polite and gentle person, did not make an issue of the low IQ of her interviewers and their bigotry and ask them to leave her office, but instead tried to have a discussion with them, something their project supervisor had obviously failed to do and their closed minds hardly merited.
Why were they working on the idiotic assumption that a newspaper that supported the settlement, must have received money from the US to do so? Why had they ruled out the possibility that some newspapers thought that an agreement that led to the return of territory and withdrawal of the occupation troops was better than the current situation?
They had not really thought about these trivialities, it emerged, which does not say very much about academic standards at UCy.
WOULD they be visiting newspapers and TV stations that were fanatically opposed to the plan to ask whether they had received funding from big developers or the big contracting firms? Big developers, afraid of property prices tumbling in the event of a deal, were the main funders of the ‘no’ campaign, the editor informed them.
Not surprisingly, as if to underline their bias, they had not thought of this angle. Free thinking does not seem to be encouraged at our hot-bed of learning which appears to reinforce the ignorant, herd mentality that afflicts our society. The cream of our youth was not remotely concerned about investigating the media hysteria about the alleged briberies of the time, for which no shred of evidence was ever provided, but assumed, like the rest of the herd, it had taken place.
And how dumb was it to show up at a paper to ask if it had been bribed by the Yanks? Perhaps I should ask to see their project supervisor to tell him that I was investigating rusfeti at the UCy and ask him if he had bribed anyone or brown-nosed the DIKO leadership to get a post as an academic because he is quite clearly not up to the job.
Or maybe the supervisor could ask students to investigate whether, their rector’s passionate support for a settlement is motivated by the promise of a big cash donation to the university by the Yanks.
THESE bribery allegations that had sparked a hysterical media witch-hunt after the referendum were started by Phil’s Sunday preacher Michalis Ignatiou, who had forecasted, before the 2004 referendum, without producing a hint of proof, that Yanks would pour millions of bucks into Kyproulla to secure a backing for the satanic peace plan.
After the referendum and the media hysteria that followed, Ignatiou pompously announced that he had investigated the briberies and he would be publishing his findings, including names of recipients in a book he was writing. This was more than 10 years ago, but this eagerly-awaited book, which some of Ignatiou’s idiot chums in the media claimed would be a bombshell, has still to appear.
The university kids, instead of visiting newspapers, should have contacted Ignatiou who I am sure would have given the piles of information about the briberies his conspiratorial mind imagined but never quite turned into the book he has been promising for more than a decade.
A FEW weeks ago, Simerini writer Savvas Iacovides wrote that the Turkish Cypriots had received some $30 million from the Yanks to support the A plan and concluded that the Greek Cypriots would have been paid a much bigger sum.
He wanted to know the amount, but he did not think of contacting Ignatiou, who is the authority on briberies, despite being advised to do so by Alecos Constantinides, a columnist in Alithia. The myth about the briberies is being kept alive by the bash-patriots even though they have still not found anything remotely resembling an iota of evidence to back their pathetic theories.
The idea that media could be bribed to take a specific political position has been with us since the time of Cold War and it was largely spread by the Soviet puppets of AKEL who were regularly attacking right-wing papers and parties of being in the pocket of the Yanks and Nato. This was meant to deflect attention away from the fact AKEL not only received funding from the Kremlin but also slavishly followed its orders, even when these went against Kyproulla’s interests. EDEK, which was taking money from Colonel Gaddafi’s Libya, also saw paid agents of the Yanks and Brits everywhere.
As they say in football, attack is the best form of defence, or as they say in my village, Akelite rhymes with hypocrite.
SPEAKING of commies, this year they are celebrating 90 year of existence in Kyproulla. Last Wednesday their leader Andros gave a speech in Larnaca to mark this anniversary, but have not seen any reports about this momentous event. Not even Tass news agency covered it. When it was first set up in 1926 the party of the reds was known as the KKK (Komounistiko Komma Kyprou), but was outlawed by the British colonial rulers in 1931. AKEL was established in 1941 and two years later merged with the outlawed KKK.
It must be noted that the song by seminal, New York punk band The Ramones title ‘The KKK took my baby away,’ did not refer to the communist party of Kyproulla, but to the more sinister American organisation. If they had sung the KKK took my brain away, it would have been a different story.
I WOULD be a hypocrite if I congratulated AKEL-KKK for their 90th anniversary, because the party’s success in making 90 per cent of the population act and think like miserable Akelites is the root cause of all the country’s problems.
Ninety years of opportunism, hypocrisy, populism, propaganda, rusfeti, unintelligent arguments and subservience to another country is what the commies are celebrating and comrade Andros made sure of reminding us with his statements and actions of the last few days.
This was the week that AKEL made its union PEO call a strike at Limassol port, closing it down for four days, for no real reason; the other unions were opposed and by Thursday PEO called off its ‘indefinite’ strike. It is the same party that has been pressuring the government to give in to the blackmail of the nurses, urging it to recognise the degrees now and give the pay rises at a future date.
This is the AKEL philosophy: make the promise and let the next government deal with it. Or, bankrupt the state, request a bailout and leave the next government to sort the mess out as you can then criticise it for taking unpopular measures and obeying the troika.
BOTOX expert Dr Marinos Sizopoulos is fast becoming a leak expert, Kyproulla’s own version of Julian Assange. On Monday he was at it again, leaking more minutes from National Council meetings and expressing shock that the Nik-Mustafa convergences were the same as the provisions of the Annan plan.
Nobody paid any attention to Sizo’s latest publicity-seeking so he has thought of another gimmick to attract attention. On Thursday he flew to Bosnia-Herzegovina, with his sidekick Costis Efstathiou, to examine the federal model of government of the country. Undoubtedly, he will return as a constitutional expert.
He is not expected to have anything remotely positive to say on his return. As he revealed on his departure, he was not going there with an open mind: “Specifically, we will try to have a very clear picture of the consequences of the model on the socio-economic life of the country and of the real deadlocks encountered daily by the citizens in Bosnia Herzegovina, as a result of the bicomunal, trizonal federation.”
A WORD of sympathy for self-proclaimed saviour of the Republic Dr Eleni Theocharous, whose Solidarnosc party is failing to have any kind of impact ahead of the parliamentary elections, even after it merged with the impotent Eurococks.
Dr Eleni is fast realising that she had overestimated her personal charisma and pulling power, which she had hoped would have drawn voters despite the fact she has nothing different from the rest of the rejectionist parties to say. Taking a stand against the privatisation of CyTA is about as original as crying in public about the dissolution of the Cyprus Republic.
She seized the opportunity to say something different immediately after the Brussels terror attacks, but it was pretty pitiful. She issued a totally unnecessary statement, in which she said the “extraordinary convening of the European Council by the end of the day is essential so as to display the decisiveness of the EU and the European population could feel there is support and security.” Despite the political disappointments, it is good to see her self-assurance, self-importance and delusions of grandeur are as strong as ever, and she is now issuing instructions to the EU as well.
CONVICTED former Central Bank governor Ttooulis Ttoouli, despite his stint behind bars, is still under the impression that he is respected member of society. So when he went to Ioannis Prodromos church in Nicosia a few Sundays ago, he headed for the isolated, raised seat, next to the cantor, that is reserved for big-shot guests, such as state officials. Ttooulis had just about positioned himself in this semi-throne, when some members of the church council went to him and politely asked him to vacate the seat. Our churchgoing customer, who witnessed the whole incident, did not know what Ttooulis was told but he made no fuss, getting out of the seat and moving to another part of the church immediately. How the mighty have fallen. A few years ago, he was bossing the bankers (that did use him as a consultant), and now he cannot get the big-shot’s seat in small parish church.
PRIMARY teachers’ union POED have given timid education minister Costas Kadis one week to rescind the ministry decision, reducing the second break by five minutes, on the grounds that this was a backed by the necessary regulations. The ministry reduced the second break to 10 minutes so that the final period of the day would last 40 instead of 35 minutes.
The POED council had agreed to this change last summer, but now is concerned because the regulations had not been amended accordingly, making the shorter break a violation of the regulations. The union will ignore the decision and return to 15 minute-breaks it warned the minister if the regulations were not amended to make the shorter break lawful.
The best bit is that the law-abiding teachers’ union was willing “to engage in a dialogue with the ministry for a comprehensive examination of the issue of the time-table.” Do not be surprised if they demand a small pay-rise, to reflect the extra 25 minutes’ work they would have to do every week.
MORE arrests are being issued by the authorities in connection with the waste management contract scams. Impressed that an arrest warrant was also issued for the chairman and managing director of Helector, Leonidas Bombolas, a Greek media magnate. His company has been bribing Greek Cypriot officials and ripping off the Republic big-time for the last 10 years. Helector had landed the Koshi landfill contract in 2006, thanks to tenders specs designed to favour it as they had been drafted by a consultants with links to Bombolas. Also, Ethnarch Tassos wanted to reward the Greek magnate because his TV station Mega campaigned vigorously against the A plan.
Perhaps, one day, the brainy students of our public university could do a project on how much money Bombolas made from opposing the A-plan.