Pretty Non-Paper Burns Pretty

The clusterfuck is complete and there will be a bloodbath. The legendary words by the late, great Jaša L. Zlobec, although uttered in a different context, never seemed more appropriate than these days, as the story of what is becoming known as “Slovenian non-paper” on partition of Bosnia and the rest of Western Balkans is developing at pace.

A mock-up map of former Yugoslavia with broken-up Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kosovo, as described in the infamous Slovenian non-paper.
This is one ugly map (source)

There are many angles to this story, none of them appealing to the eye. There is nothing to be gained by fooling around with redrawing borders in the Balkans. Doubly so when done in the crass and pedestrian manner the leaked non-paper suggests. The only potential upside to this might be the powers that be paying more attention to Bosnia-Herzegovina. Or at least it might result in Slovenian foreign minister Logar being thrown to the dogs, seeing as this happened on his watch and whatnot.

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Igor Zorčič Lives To See Another Day

Igor Zorčič just started his second iteration as speaker of the Slovenian parliament. He was appointed to the post as part of the coalition deal Janez Janša cobbled together in 2020. And he remains in the post in 2021 (at least for now) after quitting the SMC days ago, with Janša’s coalition, now deep in the minority government territory, unable to muster the votes to replaces him. This is serious political survival shit.

Speaker Igor Zorčič in a parliamentary session.
Speaker Igor Zorčič remains at his post (source: Matija Sušnik/National Assembly)

Things have been picking up pace in Muddy Hollows for some time now. They really accelerated days ago, however, when Janja Sluga, Brane Rajić and Igor Zorčič quit the SMC and joined forces with Jurij Lep who quit DeSUS and formed a group of independent MPs. The ruling coalition (what’s left of it, anyway) wanted its post back for itself and nominated NSi’s Jožef Horvat to take over. Turns out they were a vote short.

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Why PM Janša Threw A Hissy Fit

The temper tantrum Slovenian prime minister Janez Janša threw Friday afternoon during a European Parliament hearing only reiterated what was becoming painfully obvious over the last couple of months: In the face of sustained pressure, Marshal Twito is like a broken valve. He’s there but he just can’t hold it together.

Screenshot of PM Janša during his videocall where he used changing backgrounds to show how he is allegedly the one under attack and not Slovenian journalists
Janez Janša during his video call, using “change background” function to show how everyone is out to get him (source)

For those of you living under a rock: while attending the second installment of a European Parliament hearing on media freedom and rule of law in Slovenia, the Glorious Leader wanted everyone to see a video his propaganda department made. He was denied by chairperson Sophie in ‘t Veld which caused him to throw a hissy fit and cut the video feed. It was pure, unadulterated shitshow.

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One Letter, Six Prime Ministers and Half A Million Vaccine Doses

Someone please tell prime minister Janez Janša to stop writing letters. Every time he writes one he sets himself up for a fuck-up of epic (epidemic?) proportions. This time is no different. Last weekend, Janša co-authored a sharply-worded letter to European Commission and EU Council presidents. Therein he joined PMs of Austria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Latvia and Bulgaria in complaining about delivery of Covid-19 vaccine doses, basically accusing Brussels of lack of solidarity.

Photo of letter by PMs of Slovenia, Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Latvia, asking for more fairness in vaccine distribution
First, there were five PMs. Then, there were six. But in Vienna, there were only four.

Fast forward a couple of days and PM Janša finds himself bitch-slapped by the European Commission, thrown under the bus by Viktor Órban, and in serious trouble at home for skipping on buying available vaccine doses. As a result the Glorious Leader had to change his story as he went along, walk-back his statements and side-step accusations to the point of reaching his daily 10,000 steps and 500 calories many times over.

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Wild Wednesday in Muddy Hollows

Harold Wilson once observed, and pengovsky is fond of repeating, that a week in politics is a long time. Rarely was this more true than in Slovenia these days, where Jože P. Damijan’s antics on national television seem all but forgotten.

Image of European Parliament with Ljudmila Novak, Karl Erjavec and Zdravko Počivalšek in Slovenia

The one-time PM-hopeful was replaced in the news cycle by the EU parliament debate on media freedom in Slovenia (plus Hungary and Poland), Karl Erjavec quitting DeSUS (again), Zdravko Počivalšek of SMC sending a CYA letter to everyone and Ljudmila Novak of NSi denying that she’s about to launch her own party. And you know what that other British PM had to say about denials.

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