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Opinion Tales from the Coffeeshop

Tales from the Coffeeshop: Putting bums on seats for black anniversary

Master showman Prez Nik, took all the necessary steps to have a good turnout at his own invasion anniversary gathering on Wednesday

ALTHOUGH the failed coup in Turkey overshadowed our events to mark the black anniversary, it also worked as an excuse for the poor turnout, which has been in steady decline for the last 20 years or more. People just cannot go and listen to the same old recycled crap that our politicians have been uttering for decades.

Recycling might be good for the environment when it is used for conventional waste but it turns unconventional waste, such as heroic rhetoric and empty promises that come out of politicians’ mouths, toxic. Anyone exposed to it regularly could suffer brain damage which is manifested in a variety of ways, like becoming a member of DIKO, wanting Dr Theocharous to be president or wanting Sizopoulos to give them Botox treatment.

People have wised up and do not expose themselves to the black anniversary waste, which is why organisers of events have decided to make them more fun, offering some entertainment after the speeches, a practice that has been used by AKEL for years. Even the commie sheep need an incentive to go and hear the rubbish uttered by their comrade shepherds.

MASTER showman Prez Nik, took all the necessary steps to have a good turnout at his own invasion anniversary gathering on Wednesday.

First, he followed comrade Tof’s example, staging it in the gardens of the presidential palace as this would not be too big a space to fill. There would always be a few plebs that would seize the rare opportunity for a visit to the presidential palace.

Second, Nik also arranged some live entertainment to follow his speech. Well-known Greek singer Vasilis Lekkas performed for Nik’s guests. He usually sings depressing songs so there was no danger of guests having too much fun on this sombre occasion.

Third, the event was advertised on radio (perhaps also on television but I did not see it) with a dull announcement, which finished with a gloriously redundant bit of information – “admission is free.” Was it really necessary? Would even the biggest moron in Kyproulla think that he would have to buy a ticket to listen to Nik’s invasion anniversary platitudes?

THE PARTIES of the so-called centre joined forces to mark the black anniversary by co-organising an event for the condemnation of the peace talks last Monday night.

DIKO, EDEK, Greens and Alliance held a joint event in the hope that together they would attract a sizeable crowd, but their new strategy proved a spectacular failure. They did not even manage to fill the couple of hundred seats placed at the Ledra Palace, even though admission was free.

Next year, they might have to come up with a new strategy to get enough bums on seats, like offering 10 euros to everyone who shows up, which would still be cheaper than providing live entertainment as a crowd puller.

Perhaps the poor turnout was because the main speaker was the uninspiring, US-based Professor Emeritus Van Coufoudakis, who was chosen because he shared the four parties’ hatred of the A-plan, dislike of Nik and their zeal for preserving the Cyprus Republic (code language for support of partition).

The professor said nothing that had not been said before by Junior, Lillikas, Sizo or Perdikis, which must mean either the four leaders are intellectuals or Coufoudakis has the brain of a Cypriot party leader.

A NOTABLE absence from the Ledra Palace bore-fest was DIKO’s Junior, who sent his mum, the Ethnarch’s widow, to represent him. Had he thrown a tantrum when his mum told him he had to go to the event or was he on holiday abroad?

Whatever the reason, the king-mother sat in the seat reserved for her boy and accompanied the rest of the leaders, plus wives, and the professor to the post-gathering dinner at Nicosia’s most fashionable restaurant, Pantopolion. She probably also picked up the tab as she is fabulously wealthy and very generous. The things some mums do to help their spoilt boys realise maternal ambitions.

THE YOUNG fascists of Elam, in black T-shirts and cropped hair, were also present at the checkpoints on Wednesday night to mark the anniversary of the invasion in their menacing and intimidating way, frightening anyone heading north.

One fair-haired young man, who was going north via the Ledra Palace checkpoint was given threatening looks by the Elamites and one said in Greek, “you traitor, we will kill you when you come back.” He told them he understood what they said and walked on. When he crossed into the pseudostate, he found vicious-looking Grey Wolves gathered there, and although he did not speak Turkish he could tell their comments were not friendly.

Meanwhile, crossing at the Ledra Street checkpoint, a blonde, white-skinned teenager was called a “f***ing Russian whore,” by the Elamite thugs hanging around, intimidating anyone they deemed to have moral and patriotic deficiencies. They are scary.

LAST SUNDAY, after the inept Turkish coup, I thought in today’s Coffeeshop I could jokingly suggest that we should have taken advantage of the chaos in Turkey to liberate the north. Former DISY deputy Christos Rotsas, however, stole my thunder as he had made this suggestion, but not in jest.

On his Facebook page he posted the following comment: “If enslaved Cyprus did not sit with its legs and arms crossed inactively for 42 years, last night, perhaps could have been our night.” Asked to elaborate by Politis radio on Monday, Rotsas divulged his full military plan in the following way:

We should have been ready for when the opportunity arose, and on the night of the coup we could have taken the occupation army by surprise. The army would have been so confused, it would not have known if it were being attacked by Greeks or coupists. All 43,000 Turkish soldiers could have been taken prisoners by our victorious troops. Meanwhile Turkey would have accepted defeat once our soldiers had reached the shores of Kyrenia and we were holding 43,000 of her soldiers prisoners. Turkey may have bombed Kyproulla for two or three days but would then have stopped….

The only thing he did not explain was how 8,000 National Guardsmen would take prisoner 43,000 Turkish soldiers, but this was because he was not asked.

THE MILITARY coup may have failed, but the establishment of the Islamic dictatorship gathered momentum thanks to President Erdogan’s tireless efforts to protect Turkish democracy from the army.

After sacking some 8,000 cops, 9,000 military, 15,000 employees of the education ministry, 1,500 judges and prosecutors, 1,577 university rectors and dean, 30 governors etc and banned all public employees from leaving the country, he suspended human rights as if they were ever an obstacle to his authoritarian rule. And then he declared a state of emergency as well as if without it he would not be able to run the country like a dictator.

Interestingly, after some mild rebukes by the EU and even milder ones by the US, Erdogan turned to his democratic fellow-traveller President Putin and arranged to meet him at the beginning of August. This would allow them to kiss and make up after the rift over the shooting down of the Russian fighter.

This could signal the end of the principled stand of Mother Russia on the Cyprob. What is certain is that there would be no more trenchant announcements about the Turkish occupation of Cyprus, like those released by Moscow when its feud with Turkey was at its peak.

THE CHEERLEADERS of Mother Russia in Kyproulla, Lillikas, Sizo etc will have another reason to feel hurt and disappointed this week, when the government will release the names of the companies that submitted expressions of interest for the third licensing round for hydrocarbon exploration. Apparently not a single Russian company submitted an expression of interest. Dr Sizo will now start repeating his call to give a couple of our blocks to a Russian company free of charge while Lillikas will draft a parliamentary resolution urging the government to do so.

IN TODAY’S Letters to the Editor page there is a letter from the Chairman of the Geostrategic Council, Michalis Attalides, responding to a rather uncharitable opinion piece published by the Cyprus Mail which questioned the usefulness of the ‘important-sounding’ Council and wondered if it did anything other than serve as a talking shop.

Since September 2014, Attalides wrote, the Council met 37 times in plenary sessions and its members had produced nine policy recommendations, analyses and studies that were submitted in writing to the president. Such a prolific output w+as impressive, but I wonder if Prez Nik bothers to read these reports as his main reason for setting up the Geostrategic Council was primarily to provide a state position for his DIKO protege Fotis Fotiou.

In February 2014, Fotiou had to resign as defence minister because DIKO, under the new leadership of Ethnarch Junior, quit the government in protest against the Eroglu-Nik joint declaration about the Cytalks. Feeling indebted to Fotiou, for his support during the presidential elections, Nik promised to appoint him to another state position that would provide him with decent pay, self-esteem and the social status he craved.

In short, the Geostrategic Council was established in order to make another Dikhead think that he was somebody.

BEFORE the prez had the chance to appoint Fotiou as the boss and great brain of geostrategic matters, Kate Clerides had had enough of serving as Commissioner of Humanitarian Affairs and tendered her resignation. On hearing this post had been vacated and was available Fotiou informed the prez he wanted it.

As Commissioner he would get a fat salary and expense allowance, be given a state limo, receive invitations to all official functions and be sought after by the media but, most importantly, he would be able to play a role in the ongoing efforts to establish the fate of the Greek Cypriot missing, an issue the DIKO parasite always felt very passionately about.

After this development, the Geostrategic Council had no reason to exist, but as its establishment had been announced, the Prez had to go ahead with it. He appointed a dozen academics, not all mediocre, and in the position created for Fotiou, as chairman, the highly-respected academic and former diplomat Attalides, who at that time was the Rector of the University of Nicosia.

The job created for an intellectual flyweight was given to a heavyweight (admittedly not in Muhammad Ali’s class) so the geostrategic council, which started out as a joke – a toy for Fotis – under a capable chairman does work it was never intended to do and Nik has to pretend to take it seriously. He might even have forced himself to read one of its reports.

TASS, a.k.a. Cyprus News Agency had a report on its English service about the issuing of travel advice on Turkey by the foreign ministry, which said “the unsettled situation in the country is not expected to be restored soon and further deterioration of the situation may follow.” The foreign ministry also “advised Cypriot citizens who may reside, visit or intent(sic) to visit the country, to avoid travelling to certain areas if it’s not necessary where is the epicentre of tensions due to the latest developments, such as Istanbul, Angara(sic), southeastern Turkey and areas near military installations.”

I hope they are not paying someone to do these translations because Google Translate would do a better job at zero cost. The report continued: “The travel advice also said that after the continuous bomb attacks in its territory on the last three years (from 05/2013 to 07/2016), Turkey faces a high terrorist threat and further terrorist attacks may be repeated.”

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