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Petráček, Zbyněk

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5 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

Lidové noviny - Czech Republic | 06/08/2013

Monster trials divide society

The trial against alleged putschists in the Turkish army is supposed to show who calls the shots in the country, the conservative daily Lidové noviny writes: "The Turkish military is not the salvation army. But it is the force that has maintained the country's secular character since 1923. Four times it has toppled a government because it was convinced it posed a threat to the secular state - and by extension to the alliance with the West. Ten years ago, however, it did not stand in the way of the Islamist Erdoğan government. So why must the army leadership be punished now? ... Monster trials against the secular opposition and similar steps show that the Islamic democracy is not yet mature enough to withstand a normal change of government, and that it will do all it can to stay in power. This is not the way to overcome the division of society."

Lidové noviny - Czech Republic | 31/08/2012

Egypt swiftly established as new power

The participation of Mohammed Mursi at the summit of the Non-Aligned Movement in Tehran is the first time an Egyptian president has visited Iran in 33 years. The conservative daily Lidové noviny describes this as a geopolitical turning point with an uncertain outcome: "The Wikileaks disclosures of 2010 revealed that Arab countries like Egypt were more afraid of an Iranian nuclear bomb than an Israeli one. Arab leaders called on the US to destroy the Iranian nuclear facilities. Now Mursi no longer seems to fear the 'shiite nuclear bomb'. In 2011, after the Egyptian revolution, the line was: Don't condemn Egypt. The Islamists there confine their power to domestic politics, while foreign and defence policy remain in the hands of the army. Now Mursi is demonstrating that things can be different. In 2012 we have watched as Egypt achieves political emancipation far more quickly than Turkey in ten years under Erdoğan."

Lidové noviny - Czech Republic | 13/06/2012

Russia's opposition is too weak

President Vladimir Putin needn't lose any sleep over the slogans of the Russian government opponents at the demonstration in Moscow, the conservative daily Lidové noviny concludes: "According to Putin, 'what weakens the country and divides its society is unacceptable'. But Russia's problem is not that the opposition is dividing society. The problem is that there is no viable opposition. What alternatives does the opposition offer to the demonstrations? 'We are trying to peacefully free Russia of the usurper who wants to go on robbing the country forever', is what we are told not by any old bus driver, but by former deputy prime minister [Boris] Nemtsov [under Boris Yeltsin]. … Can you fight against the autocrats by claiming that Putin steals? … No, this is not the way to beat Putin."

Lidové noviny - Czech Republic | 12/04/2011

Peace plans for Libya doomed to failure

The hopes of peace in Libya have been dashed for the time being after the rebels rejected as inadequate a plan drawn up by the African Union that had been accepted by Gaddafi. In the opinion of the conservative daily Lidové noviny the plan was doomed to fail from the outset: "If there is a sensible solution it has to be an African or Arab one. If the West tries to do this there will soon be talk of imperialism, colonialism or even a crusade. ... The African Union's plan could never have worked because both belong to Africa: the rebels and Gaddafi. The plan was aimed not at Gaddafi's stepping down but at an agreement with the rebels. Who would bet on such a plan working? The African Union however, has no other option. It has neither military power nor money. And if it does have money it comes from Gaddafi, the founding father of this Union."

Lidové noviny - Czech Republic | 16/06/2009

More democracy than expected in Iran

The conservative daily Lidové Noviny reflects on the protests in Tehran against President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad: "For thirty years we have considered Iran a state of religious fanatics where everything is dictated by the Ayatollahs. To a certain extent Tehran itself is to blame. ... But behind all this it remains the case that Iranians decide their representatives through elections. That sounds banal, but in the region it's a true luxury. Saudi Arabia or Egypt may be allies with the West, but they have no experience with democratic competition. The Iranian opposition goes out onto the street, bans or no bans. Could that also happen in Saudi Arabia? There is no such thing as an opposition there. ... But as welcome as the Islamic democracy is, the problem is that even the demonstrators on the streets of Tehran believe Iran should have the atom bomb."

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