Continued from Corona diary 09.
1. Corona’s back – with a vengeance!
Tuesday, 7th of July 2020: well, dear diary, I had made a relatively long break. For a while, everything seamed, and everyone behaved as if Corona had never existed. So, in the mean time, since the end of May, we’ve had mass attendance football matches, elections, clubs had started working practically normally etc.
The elections were fun. Ruling party had total control of the nationwide media, and, unsurprisingly, won about 99.9% of the votes (some half the population voted, and everyone voted for either the ruling party, or one of their puppet parties). And the elections were obviously rigged, on top of the total media control.
In one city in the south, Vranje, people got instructed to vote number 4 for the local elections. However, the ignorant idiots circled the number 4 for both the local, and the national assembly elections. For the national assembly, number 4 was a Hungarian minority party. So they got a swooping victory in Vranje, with 0 Hungarian population. No other proof of the election fiddling is needed in my opinion.
Monty Python is played live in Serbia! 🙂
After that jolly good time, we’re back to fear. Suddenly, media reports of a huge number of new Corona sick people. Now everyone actually knows someone who’s gotten sick with the virus – during the pre-June lockdowns, this wasn’t the case. Measures are now again getting tightened. Masks wearing is slowly becoming obligatory. New curfews are announced. And people are again getting noticeably afraid, as well as stacked against each other: those who think everyone must wear masks vs those who despise wearing a mask and anyone wearing one.
Ambulance sirens can be heard very, very often in the last few days. Based on that alone, I’d say things are getting worse.
Media talks sensationalist crap, there’s
little none objective informing and education. While the pandemic seems even more serious now, than it had been before, at least in Serbia. Economy is already fucked up, and new lockdowns will probably be the last nail in the coffin. I am expecting a pay cut by the end of the year, or to have inflation eat up the real pay, one not excluding the other. If I live that long that is. 🙂
The announced curfew measures weren’t taken very well – later in the evening it got more exciting. Protests in Novi Sad and in Belgrade (don’t know about the other cities). In Belgrade, lots of people. After they broke into the national assembly, clash with the police had started and reinforcements were called in.
Some police cars were burned:
People were shouting: “treason”, “thieves”, “resign”, “Kosovo” (this one never goes out of fashion – the thing the whole civil war shitfest and 1988 coup had started with), “Vučić (president) faggot” (expression “faggot” is regularly used as a character trait description in Serbian)… Rocks were thrown at the police, tear gas was thrown back at the police.
Accusations of police brutality are flying.
All in all, I see several problems with all this:
General population (those still left in Serbia) are generally brainwashed with nationalism, xenophobia and not supporting any really positive change. If the regime is changed, the next ones will most probably be even worse.
And, what most are failing to realize, there is an ongoing pandemic. The government loosened all the measures for the elections to be held – which is an idiot move. But people were in fact protesting and asking for loosened measures all the time. Now that the measures are getting stricter (probably too late), the protests are against those very measures!
Total shitfest, with everybody being in the wrong, in my opinion.
Thursday, 9th of July 2020: After the protests on Tuesday, government’s “Corona crisis headquarters” (consisting of regime-friendly doctors) suddenly changed their views. On Tuesday morning it was: “Corona virus situation is worsening, we’ll have to introduce stricter measures”, while on Wednesday morning, after the protests of the previous night it was: “Virus situation seems to be improving, we’ll keep an eye on the stats…” Honesty and integrity are severely lacking in Serbia.
Wednesday evening saw more protests. With some violence from the protesters (more on that later), and some unnecessary violence (“brutality” as it is referred to) from the police.
In my city, Novi Sad, there were also some clashes with the police, city hall was a bit damaged with rocks and stuff, as well as the headquarters of the ruling party (SNS).
When it comes to the police service – some are idiots, or completely lost it due to poor organization, long hours in the heat wearing full protective clothing and helmets, either way, some really senseless brutality was done, some of it recorded on cameras.
As far as protest(or)s go: they seem to be taken over by the nazis (far right is the modern euphemism). Xenophobia – check. Homophobia – check. Nationalism – check. Provoking the police and trying to turn the protests into violent clashes – check. Clueless – check. And I’ll talk a bit more about this last item.
People are frustrated and angry. With lots of good reasons for it. However, while they are all “against”, no one has a clue what they are “for”. Sure – better standard of living, rule of law, end of corruption and so on. But without any clue, that’s just like Miss universe girls saying they are “for world peace”. Sure. We all are.
However, there is no political program, idea, or person(s) that is intended to change the current system. While the current system is made of the people in the country. Bad, corrupt? Yes – that’s what an average citizen is capable of, that’s what we’ve become. Even if the current ruling mob gets thrown out of power, I don’t expect the next ones to be any better, expect them to be (slightly) worse in fact.
Media reporting should also be mentioned. All the national frequency media gave no reports on the protests last night. Showing films and TV shows. While media who try to present themselves as “objective & independent” are doing their best to paint the police as 100% bad&brutal – saw one report where a reporter was provoking the police, trying to get some footage of the police brutality over journalists. The police were quite chill, so they just told her to piss off, and, apparently, she got a pat on the back (since the camera didn’t even shake when it was allegedly done) – and tried to make the most of it, shouting how she got hit on her back and how the police are pricks… You can judge for yourself (the “hit” is at around 1:30):
Of course, many of the police are pricks, and there definitely is a lot of (real, needless) brutality:
Government, though the media they control, is already changing the story to “there probably will be no curfews, just… just be careful, you know, Corona and stuff…” Will see how things unravel in the following days. I expect more protests this evening in all the major cities.
Afternoon update: well, as it turns out, government has “suddenly” decided to impose no curfew. While the president has
flown to a meeting run away to Paris.
3. “Normal” protests
Friday, 10th of July 2020: Anti government protests in the 90s were full of good humor, and peaceful. Such were the last night’s protests. It seems most of the violent people were alienated. With a vast majority of the protesters deciding to just sit down whenever someone in the group tries/starts riling up any violence/trouble.
On previous two days, some teenagers and young men with lots of muscles, obviously organized and synchronized in groups of about 30 were apparently the ones starting the violence (then dispersing, letting the police go wild on the other protesters). Many believe these people were organized by the government to alienate the protests as far right and violent.
Now, these groups were suppressed. People sitting down and insisting any violence to seize. Not approaching the police blocks, keeping the distance. Some small scale clashes were present between the vast peaceful majority and the troublemakers. So protests went peacefully, at least in Belgrade and Novi Sad (not sure about other major cities).
On Wednesday evening, one of the leaders of the peaceful protestors, Milan Pogačar, was arrested for “violent behavior”. The man was urging for calm and peace during the protests and actually went home in protest as soon as the violence broke out. The police were waiting at his home – apparently a setup. He’s in prison now, and last night’s protesters went to the local police station to request his release.
What now? The protesters are asking for: resignations of police minister Vladimir Rebić (a moron) and police director Nebojša Stefanović (a moron who copy/pasted his Doctor thesis, to the dismay of everyone and blind eye by the university), Novi Sad mayor Miloš Vučević (a thug), and the president Aleksandar Vučić (a lying hypocrite and a thug), Corona crisis team members (regime obedient puppets), and taking one billion RS Dinars donated to the church last month, and giving it to the public health care hospitals.
Of course, the government doesn’t care much for the peaceful protests, so it is very likely they will just let the people blow off some steam in the next weeks and slowly disperse. While mostly right wing idiots are the one willing to do any violence.
There’s still no real plan what happens in case the ruling party (mafia) looses power. And there’s an inevitable epidemic spread, with a big economic crisis. I expect, within the next 3 months, for all the public workers (doctors, police, teachers, soldiers…) pays to be cut, along with pensions.