April 2004

Glance and misery of the East
Is´Edie´ going to be Kennedy of Slovakia?
Do you think you have this natural authority?
Spišská Sobota
System integrator NESS
In Poland there doesn‘t exist a law for a defense of minorities
Have you already received a reply to the complaints?
How do you evaluate an actual place of Slovak minority in Poland?
What does the state finance to minorities then?
How often are Slovak worship celebrated in villages of Orava and Spiš?
What do you think about a national sense of young Slovak generation?
Do Slovaks disappear in Poland?
Do the businessmen support you?
Will the castle of Markušovce wait to see its second renaissance?
Eagle without wings
What is the sense of March 14th?
How is the European Union going to deal with many regional differences?
“Build the house where the dog is lying.”
I love so I exist, I dream also with reason
Mrs. Kráoviová, do you like the nick name Marína or have you just suffered it for a long time?
Andrei Smolák
From Mr. Capital is Mr. Senator

Glance and misery of the East
“If some people in Bratislava think that they will block and weaken Košice with their activity and perceiving, they are mistaken. First of all they will weaken Slovakia”, said in the interview for the magazine Dimenzie in November 2002 the Mayor of the city of Košice, Zdenko Trebua. It was closely before the mayor’s elections when the nomination of this leftist politician was supported by an interesting city coalition: ANO, SMER, Strana maarskej koalície and Strana demokratickej alternatívy (SDA). This election coalition, which had possibly been broken up earlier than it have been founded for some purpose, is quiet today and doesn’t support its nominee on a battle field against centralists in Bratislava and right-wing parliament in Košice, in which play the prime SDKU and KDH. Košice has an ambition to be the second Vienna for the European Union, the engine of eastern Slovak development. But the second biggest Slovakian city is in a distress and stagnancy. It suffers for the resolving of high insolvency, a flat building, and a conception of economic and social development isn’t established yet. It’s in a fog, misses a dynamism, spark and impetuosity, which are felt for example in Žilina. The topics of day still aren’t real visions of the city, preparedness for the advantages of Schengen frontier, expert polemics and resolutions of problems but cry over the question why doesn’t it work or why we cannot, because we don’t have “real economic and tax tools to achieve.” And what is the saddest thing? That the city parliament hasn’t accept nor one project in the quality in which the mayor of the city could support it on discussion with the government, prime minister or individual ministers. Also another cities in the east of Slovakia are in very similar, if not the same, situation.
The set mirrors force us to give some ungrateful questions: where are those experts who are told about so often? Where is the unused potential hidden? If it’s not in the bodies of the cities and local political parties, who have bought it? Or he had escaped to the west before the fear of taking the responsibility for the things he did(n´t) work out? What interesting and good for public (except organizing of party’s meetings and travel trips) do the party bosses of coalition and opposition parties in the cities? If they aren’t able to communicate among them, work out something and enforce on city stage and then they can lob for this, alongside to their interests, in Bratislava in their party line? What word and respect do they have there? Do they have them at all?
The answers to these questions brought us March 2004 when the mayor of Košice began the “rebellion” against the government in form of an open letter for the representatives of a regional and local autonomy of the regions of Košice and Prešov. It was signed by “up to” four communal activists: Z.Trebua, M.Ben (SD) - the mayor of the city of Prešov, chairmen of VUC R.Bauer (KDH) and P.Chudík (U). The meeting of signatories of the letter, in which they dare the government to find an “acceptable portfolio for a long-lasted development of an eastern region” round a shared negotiation table, was provoked by an unfortunate sentence of the Minister of Economic Pavol Rusko, “I’m very sad that it ´s so hard to get investors here. Everybody is asking ´Where does the highway end? ´ Who will come here if they can stay in Nitra? Is he silly? Is he dotty? All the life is round the highway. If there is no highway there is a village and people use to buy weekend houses there.” (understand to the eastern Slovakia). He hasn’t apologized for it up to this time. “Rebels” made a proposal to the government to negotiate about priorities of a regional development up to the year 2008 in frames of NUTS II (Slovakia - east): building of the highway part D1 (Važec - Prešov) and high-speed motorway R4 (Košice - state frontier with Hungary), or more precisely the realization of a technological - industrial park Prešov - Košice. “ We regard these ranges as basic pillars of establishing prosperous conditions for a foreign investors entrance to our region.” It hasn’t been noted if the government gave an official answer to this letter so far. Just the minister Rusko, which letter agitated, exclaimed and in frames of “centric prevention” has organized a tour to the east, to meet a mayor of Prešov Ben and a district administrator Chudik, in Prešov. What did he deal about with them, what did he promise or falsify and why didn’t he meet also the mayor and district administrator of Košice, we don’t know yet. Maybe time will show. In this time there is just one certain thing: open letter of two regional mayors and district administrators wasn’t supported by any parliamentarian deputies or parties, which come from eastern Slovakia, any reunion of parliamentarian regional and local self-governments. We can only say that glance and misery of the east, municipal and parliamentary politics continues.
Robert Matejovic
Editor in Chief

Is´Edie´ going to be Kennedy of Slovakia?
´The president of Slovakia should give an impression of a politician, a moral authority, a man getting involved into events (affairs) if it is on the level of a statesman. It is not correct to comment all the matters the society suffers from´, claims Eduard Kukan, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Slovakia as well as a presidential candidate.

He does not like being defeated. He wants to spread optimism and win in the first round of a presidential election. Western diplomats call him Edie; it is a short form of Edward. He considers his greatest diplomatic successes when he was appointed as a plenipotentiary of the General Secretary of the United Nations for Balkan and his two-year- activities in this post. As he says his biggest failure (but he is not responsible for it) was when Slovakia was not nominated to the Security Council of the United Nations. He has chosen a clover-leaf as a symbol of his campaign: ´I find it not only as a message of good news forthcoming. I also see it as a symbol of the fact that even little things can bring people happiness. Most of all it symbolizes uniqueness, ability to appear, catch attention, and stand out from plenty of similar ones. I see this uniqueness in Slovakia. Nevertheless, we must take care of it and let it grow.´

Mr Kukan, why is John Fitzgerald Kennedy, a former American President, your idol? His liberal politics, he sought to improve the civil rights and attempted to give America a face ended up in conspiracies against him and his assassination… Do you consider him as a successful politician?
Yes. I like his way of leading dialogues, the way of presentation, he had very clear and philosophical statements focused on people, he looked after his family, he use human approach and did not preset himself as a superstar. He was a patriot and knew how to address the Americans. His famous declaration: ´Do not ask what America can do for you but what you can do for America, ´ changed many Americans. When we were young, we found him as a politician, charming man having natural authority. He did not prefer the way of pounding the table angrily and forcing through his opinions by orders. You can either have or not to have this authority.

Do you think you have this natural authority?
People who know me would tell you better. (He said laughing).

J.F.K. was known by his concerns about politicians´ bravery. He was thinking about it in terms of three temptations every politician has or is not brave enough to resist it. First temptation - the influence of the political party (party point of view). How does it concern you? Your opponents are criticising you that you have already changed the membership in some political parties…
Being slavishly influenced by a political party is very dangerous not only for its risk to take an incorrect decision. The politician as long as every man should keep his personal conviction. However, very narrow-minded party attitudes eliminate the ability to distinguish the truth from lies, far away from their reason.

Second temptation (which many politicians have already succumbed to) is to please the public at any occasions, and thus obtain voters´ favour easily. You claim that even if it was in contradiction to the real interests of the country. What do you want? Do you want to tell only the truth in media?
To be honest with you, public opinion survey is very important to me, but it is not the most important and influential aspect of the political life. The Slovak voter has showed sometimes that is not led by populist mottos. I have never had populist tendencies, I have nothing to hide and I do not have any reasons to tell lies at all.

Third temptation- the pressure of influential involved groups, citizen groups and influential economic groups as well. How do you want to resist this pressure?
As the Minister of Finances, I have never succumbed to any influential groups. I do not think I will have any problems with it if I have been elected as the President.

Well, let go back to Kennedy’s most famous statement. Do you suppose that Slovakia and its citizens are already on that level of thinking to push it and to be respected socially?
I am afraid not. Well, not yet. As Slovakia is a young state, I think politicians should move forward to normal patriotism while acting. There are so many things necessary to be done.

For example?
The normal patriotism is when you are proud of your country, you are proud of its achievements. There have been more of them for the last months and years. Investment booms, many achievements in foreign policy are appreciated. I know it is not understood in Slovakia this way, but I do not want to tell anybody off. The normal patriotism includes all the Slovak winners in the field of sports, hockey-players the most recently. They were able to connect all the citizens, many politicians should learn from them.

Many students, especially from Universities ask why they should return home after finishing their studies although they have better material and work backgrounds there?
Slovakia is their mother country where they should return and which they should work for. It is necessary to talk about it more. If the feeling of patriotism disappeared from the young people, it would be very serious.

What can convince them to stay in Slovakia, what kind of vision are they presented with?
You mean the motivation of young people. Of course, talking only about natural beauties and about the fact they were born in Slovakia, it is not enough. The politicians are responsible for creation of the conditions in which young people would not leave their country, to create the conditions competitive with those in Western countries. It is necessary to make them more attractive. It is high time to give them a sense of economic achievements. It is far from the living standards of the European Union. I expect that within the next two or three years also Slovaks will feel the pleasant conditions and positive results of the reforms. We are inevitably and clearly approaching towards this goal. Based on my own experience and on the communication with young people I know that there are various specifications in many professions restricting chances of young people in the West. They feel being touched by it. These are the main reasons for staying at home where they have a particular background. The main task of the government is to move things forward in order to make young people feel that the situation is improving and we are growing.
As I see, there is a new positive energy seeping out from the background. However, in some regions, it is penetrating very slowly. We are always getting across the passive waiting and complaining about the whole world. I understand it is very difficult to earn for living for many of them. Some people cannot help themselves. On the other hand, there is a lack of faith in our abilities, courage and we lack initiative. It can be already seen these days: real conditions are not enough. In the same conditions things are going well somewhere, there are people able to push things forward… but somewhere not yet; they are still waiting. Therefore, I think that apart from these conditions, it is necessary to create more favourable and optimistic atmosphere. I would like to encourage young people to be more active, increase their awareness of their importance and trust in their power. And not only once a year remind ourselves: ´We have got it in ourselves.´

You have resisted to the academic proposals and offers to become the Prime Minister for many years. You have always refused this possibility claming you feel the best in the field of diplomacy and in the post of Minister of Foreign Affairs. You had been deciding to become the presidential candidate for six months. Which reasons were the most decisive? Conviction that the president candidate must reach foreign dimension as well? Alternatively, have you discovered that it is not suitable for the president to be in the opposition against the government?
After the integration of Slovakia in the European Union, the foreign dimension will be crucial. After May1, 2004 Slovakia will occur in very demanding and completely different life. Only those capable to overcome the new and demanding conditions will succeed. We can already feel a kind of pressure and we need to be prepared for it. It will take us a while to accept this change. Slovak representatives must be ready as well in order to represent Slovakia responsibly with dignity. Their behaviour, acting and impression they will leave in Brussels and Strasbourg will play the most important roles. In addition, the head of state is very important, whether Slovakia will have a president known and able to communicate with them, to be able to represent the country as good as possible and will not shock the Union with his declarations and statements. In this area, I would like to prove that in this process Slovak president would be at least the equal partner for the others. It was the most decisive fact while I was judging whether to become a candidate or not.

Do you suggest that by this time Slovak presidents have not shown enough qualifications and representativeness?
This dimension has not played such a significant role yet. Our membership in the European Union requires the active participation of the president in all the meetings, excellent ´movements´ in the background. I feel like a fish in water in this field. You are right when you are saying that it was the most difficult to leave the life I was used to as Minister of Foreign Affairs. In case I won the election, it would be very difficult to leave the Ministry and all the employees who I really esteem. While I was making a decision, foreign policy activities predominated.

You mean qualified services in order to gain better reputation or negotiations with the partners. Are you expecting the post-integration shocks in Slovakia and the situations solving of which will require the active participation of the president and not a commissary or minister?
Yes. It will be necessary to be good negotiators and overtake the posts. I can use my qualifications in this area. For the president it is necessary to know how to explain clearly to the citizens about our intentions and plans. We will have to pass. Everyone will have to take this exam; the most visible will be our political elite. They will have to represent the country as well as not to embarrass us. They will have to attempt in cooperation with the others as well to push forward the interests of Slovakia against plenty of other interest. Only experienced people having contacts and appreciation would be able to act this way. I have been working to fulfil these criteria. Our people are worried too much; keep asking whether they will not be lost in this big world. It will be very important to explain our attitudes. We lack self-confidence, particular complex so inappropriate and unnecessary. We feel needles respect and esteem for everything that is strange, new and automatically we consider it superior to what we have at home. I want to increase our self-confidence and self-esteem of our people. We had been reigned and had have been a part of something for many years and this reflected in our understanding and thinking. It is time to stop kneeling down and feel sorry for ourselves. The membership in the Union will be useful to face these complexes and eliminate them. There is no reason for having these feelings.

You claim you know the people and the country very well. Does Slovakia need this modern vision?
I think it is necessary but not with very complicates proposals. Our people need to know how the candidate sees the future of Slovakia and let us say, after ten years in the European Union, what the idea of Slovakia is and how Slovakia should contribute to the European family, what we should focus on, what to protect and save. This point of view is necessary more than a widespread analysis.

So, what exactly should Slovakia focus on after its integration in the European Union? What should Slovakia save and what is necessary to protect?
Slovakia should remain itself even in the Union. It should preserve its culture, traditions, and scales of values.

Your opponents criticise your communistic history. How do you understand it? Is there anything you should be ashamed of?
There is nothing I am ashamed of. I was the member of the Communistic Party, but I did not hold any superior pots. If I wanted to work as a diplomat, I had no choice those days. I had never exploited my membership. After 1989, President Václav Havel sent me to the United Nations to represent former Czechoslovakia. All the people working in diplomacy those days knew one another very well and we knew who was doing or not doing redundant extra work. I have been in Slovak politics for ten years and under the supervision of the public, I have been in the opposition. I think it has been a long time for the people to realize if you only pretend or you are honest and you always play fair. People have had enough time to learn your attitudes in various situations and under different circumstances, which reveal my character. In my case, there were many situations of that kind.

You studied diplomacy and international relationships at the Institute of international relationships in Moscow. Do you still consider it as one of the best and most reputable in the world?
Yes. Even nowadays, I consider it as a good school of diplomacy. I studied there a very long time ago and it had already been one of the most reputable schools. Although the ideological division of the world as well marked the school and professors, many subjects being taught there were excellent and on the highest level, for example foreign languages, geography, history, politics, culture. Graduates from the school had been completely and precisely trained to serve in international services and became very good and skilful diplomats. It had been the only school of that kind within Eastern Block those days At the present it is still of good reputation, high standard and students from all over the world study there.

You were appointed a mandate for the plenipotentiary of the General Secretary of the United Nations Kofi Annan for Balkan. Slovak public hardly knows your activities in the process of peace implementation in Balkan. Why have you not written a book concerning this matter yet?
I have a very simple answer for your complicated question- that is time. I might once. Maybe the time to share my experience with the readers will come.

Your opponents describe you as a politician who in strict confident and artfully allowed the flights of the NATO troops over Slovakia during the bombing of Serbia in 1999. Do you agree with this criticism?
I claim I forced through the resolution concerning the permission of the fights over Slovakia to be issued by Slovak government. However, I did not do it confidentially or artfully. As I remember not all my colleagues in the government were aware of the importance of this resolution. I will not tell a secret and my activities very fully supported by the Prime Minister. It was very difficult situation, but the character of the country must be determined very precisely. We would either have refused it of accepted it. It was necessary to make a decision those days, a decision leading the country to the future- to become the member of NATO. I still think the decision made by the government was correct.

A few years later, how would you evaluate your contribution to the peaceful solution of ethnical problems in the West Balkan?
Together with MrBildt, we had a mandate from General Secretary of the United Nations to work quietly, decently, calm and behind the scene. So we did. It was not a post to pose in front of cameras and microphones, but to tie up very gentle threads torn between the United Nations and the USA. When I was appointed as the plenipotentiary, there existed the crisis of trust between M.Albright and K.Annan. The Americans were expressing disapproval of the United Nations. I only unpretentiously convinced the Americans that the United Nations is the right organization where all these issues should be solved as well as that K.Annan really concerns in taking measures and regulations in order to solve the critical situation in Balkan. We had to proceed very diplomatically and carefully. It happens in one’s life sometimes that to achieve the results you must not talk about the matter in public otherwise you will create the obstructions. It was the post requiring classical diplomacy and standard methods. The results were not spectacular, there were many negotiations held in the background leading to the more realistic review of the solutions of the existing situation. In fact, the matter returned to the field of the United Nations and Security Council passed the resolution no. 1244 due to my activities as well.

Slovak opposition often claims that Slovakia is doing ´ on bended knee´ politics in terms of the USA and Brussels. Are you able to do diplomacy holding your head up? Will you defend our national interests without the policy of appeasement?
I strictly deny such proclamations. To act politely, correctly and without big words and gestures does not mean ´on bended knee´ politics. Although denying thing can be done peacefully and decently. Yes. I am able to do diplomacy with my head held up against the USA, Brussels or any other country. It is impossible to do real politics without compromises. Any agreement can be made only if it is suitable for both sides. It is the same in the field of the international institutions. Moreover, our pre-integration negotiations with the European Union were led in the same way. I think this kind of negotiating is more effective than so called resolute procedures. I repeat - politeness is not to the detriment of contents of the negotiations and pushing our interests and aims.

You are said to be very pro-American and very little pro-European. You are said to miss patriotism and national dimension…
It is very simplified view and I do not agree such criticism. It is not confidential that I care about our good relationships with the USA a lot. Thee are many historical and many other reasons for it. I understand that we are the Europeans and will be operating within the European Union but I do not think that our concern about being in a good relationship with the USA contradicts the idea of being good Europeans. The relationships between the USA and Europe should be based on the partnership and cooperation, the differences taking us apart should not be emphasised. It is good for neither the Americans nor the Europeans. Their communication must be continuous and very intensive in order to explain the Americans what Europe is going to do mainly in the areas of Defensive and Security Policies. America thinks that Europe want to separate from them. It is not either objective or true. The USA has been appealing to undertake European security into its hands for a long time. If they are doing it, they are very excited, start worrying and raise their voice. It is only necessary to tell them that we are going to do what we have been appealed for. It is possible to reach it, I think. What kind of situation would it be if we had to apologise to our European partners that we are in a good relationship with the USA? However, it is impossible and it does not make any sense. It is necessary to improve the communication. In these disputes regarding European-American relations, Slovakia will hold the position in order to sustain our partnership. After all, there are two issues: the EU will compete with the USA in the economic sphere and we cannot avoid economic tensions and wars. Moreover, we can neither be enemies in the political-defensive sphere nor we can have different opinions.

Is it or is it not possible to create similar partnership with France, Germany or Russia? Doesn’t Slovakia prefer the USA to other countries?
It does not and has never done it. In case of all the countries, you have mentioned we behave as partners. Even in case of the USA, we did not agree with the USA in some areas in which we were closer to Germany or France.

Do you agree with the American proclamation that Europe has divided into the old and new Europe?
No, I do not agree with Minister D.Rumsfeld´s proclamation. I do not like it and I am talking about it very frankly. Europe is the only one and we are entering the United Europe. The crisis of Iraq is an evidence revealing a lack of communication between Europe and the USA. It is necessary to profound interactive dialogues. Any division of Europe is a kind of violence and increases the attitude concerning the differences. During the integration negotiations we said to the Germans and French what we thought about the Iraqi crisis. Our contacts and dialogues have been more open and friendlier since then. They have changed their approach; they are more active. I believe that Chirac will never repeat his statement about missing the chance to be quiet, because we will be never quiet in the Union. They will be disappointed, we will be noisy and we will be talking aloud while presenting our opinions.

Do you want to operate as a defender of smaller states and nations? Can you get this idea across? What are and will be our national interests? Do you expect the support of smaller countries?
It is necessary to talk about our opinions and interests very directly and clearly. Contemporary members of the Union are used to it. By using, many arguments they are trying to persuade you that they understand our national interests. Nevertheless, they are getting into conflicts with European interests. They are aware of that. The European Union should also provide the countries with the opportunity to find the partners having the similar opinions and thus push them forward. We have already been doing it for longer time.

In your opinion, the president should move forward by the power of his morality. What do you mean?
According to contemporary constitution, Slovak President is either strong or weak. He has some powers that do not make him a marionette, but he can use his powers. I do not think it is correct for me to evaluate my morality. Slovak President should be a political leader, moral authority and as a man participating in the events if it is on his level. It is not correct to comment all the matters, which the society suffers from, or independently comment the issues having overall impact. There is his statesmanlike dimension in here; he should keep his objectiveness and independence. This is the way of being a president. His style and form must be on the highest level.

You would like to be a president who unifies and does not separate. Will you push forward your own vision of the state and you solution of critical issues?
Yes. The president should present his attitudes and visions towards problematic and essential issues. He should suggest the way Slovakia would precede. He president is authorized to do it but only in very polite and tactful way, not to sweep off different opinions. He should present his opinions and attitudes so that they were useful inspiration for both executive and opposition. He cannot act in order to unify the coalition and opposition. It would not be correct and I do not find it as necessary. The president should introduce the independent view of solving the controversial opinions and problems.

Spišská Sobota
This previous market settlement, founded by the family Máriássy in the XII century, is today the part of the city of Poprad. By the coming of Saxon Germans in XIII century it became the one of the most important cities of Spiš region and competed with so important centers of Spiš as for example Kežmarok and Levoa. In the year 1474 also king Matej Corvine visited this city. His visit should be related to contracting the peace with a Polish king Kazimír IV (1447 - 1492) in Spišká Stará Ves. In this occasion the representatives of Hungary demanded again the conceding of thirteen Slovak cities (Spišská Sobota included) from the deposit to Poland, which had lasted for 360 years. In the XVIII century Móric Beovský, the king of Madagascar, was visiting this city. There were also made some parts of the movies “Tisícroná všela” and “Adam Šangala” on its square.

System integrator NESS
NESS CEE company has established special competence centers for different segments, which focus on the specialistic know-how from information technologies, but dispose either of understanding the concrete business.

Another important company, dealing with information technologies, comes to the slovak market. Global israeli company NESS, which already has its subsidiaries in 14 countries worldwide and provides services in almost every business segment, expands its activities in Slovakia. “We want to achieve similar business position, like in Czech republic, where we have already existed for 14 years. Our global and also local strategy is the maximum orientation on customer’s demands. By our partnership, we propose them realization of such projects, which have a clear added value“, says Rudolf Horvath, Sales Director NESS Slovakia, Ltd.

Mr.Horvath, NESS is a quite new brand on the Slovak IT market. Could you briefly introduce us the company?
Yes, of course. NESS is relatively a young company, which was established in 1998 by merge of 6 biggest israeli IT companies. The way, how the company was created, reflects also the name of company - NESS, which means the miracle, because the fast merge was a miracle by itself. Today the headquarter is situated in Israel, with more than 2000 specialists and worldwide about 4500 people. Not only for the greatness of the company, but mostly for more than 30 year lasting experience, the company is perceived to be the IT market leader. Geographically, we are contemporary located in all continents, besides Afrika.. Related to provided services, each region represents the specific know - how. For example, India is a center for offshore and outsourcing services.

You speak about the maximum orientation on the customer’s demands. What do you mean by that?
Information technologies (IT) are the part of almost all processes in a company, which means that it represents relatively a very close relationship between IT and business. Both of these worlds have their own particularities. For, we could speak of IT as a tool for business support, it is necessary to achieve the maximum conformity with global company strategy, and for this purpose, our company has established special competence centers for different segments, which focus on the specialistic know-how from information technologies, but dispose either of the understanding the concrete business. Today, we have competence centers for finance, telecommunication, utility, manufacturing and services and public. Combination of this know-how enables us to participate on the global proposal of special solution, considering IT, but mostly our customer’s demand.

We have heard that you want to carry as a system integrator NESS. How can we understand that?
As the market of IT is being developing so quickly, the role of system integrator is growing. System integrator is perceived today in different roles, regarding the growing importance of information technolgies (IT) and its close relationship to global company strategy. The strategy rank is focused on the relationship between company plans into the information strategy, for the consistent architecture generation and Information system process design. The managing rank is oriented on the optimalisation of organisation and the management of different Information system components supply from all suppliers, including the customer alone. And the last but not least, it is technically-technological rank, aimed on the optimal cross connection of all projects‘ parts (HW, SW, related services) to complex functional unit.

We are talking about the large systems. How is the internal and external shielding of Integrator secured?
Security, today, is an actual issue. The same as system integration, security has more definitions. I mean for example, investments security, stability of solution, resistance against the failure, caused by any reason, and of course, data security against the lost or usage by an unathorised user. With our attitude, we control all this functions. Regarding the methodology and practice, I suppose, most important is the relationship between the supplier and his customer. These projects have usually a long-term character, and so should be also the relationship. In our projects, the average cooperation period ,with our customer, is about 9 years and we build our customer relationship on the base of bilateral expedience. Our basic values match those, which are neccessary for reciprocal relationship, not just for the business one.

In Poland there doesn‘t exist a law for a defense of minorities
We are not emigrants; we are old settlers from Spis and Orava. We would like Slovakia to mention this fact by designation of various bilateral contracts with Poland,” says Ludomir Molitoris, a representative of a Slovak association in Poland.

Slovaks in Poland live mainly in northern parts of Spiš (14 villages) and Orava (13 villages) at the territory in an extent of 583 km2, which was incorporated to Poland in the year 1920 after resolution of Embassy Council in Spaa. Up to this day there exist a conventional opinion that this territory, which were in years 1939-1945 the parts of Slovakia, was interchanged by Czechs for a part from polish Tešinsko with rich bed coals. “In year 2002, when in Poland was the census of inhabitants for the first time with column Nationality, there were 2001 inhabitants who signed themselves to a Slovak nationality. However we estimate that in Poland live up to 15 000 inhabitants with Slovak public sense,” says PhDr. Ludomir Molitoris, General Secretary of Association of Slovaks in Poland, Manager of Printing Unit and Publishing House of Association of Slovaks in Poland which publishes in Krakow a national magazine “Život”, various almanacs and book publications in Slovak also Polish language.

Mr. Molitoris, we found out that you have presented complain against the final census of people. Why?
Because it was not seriously managed and it came out distorted enough. In Poland they last asked inhabitant about their nationality in the year 1931(!), and they designated it accordance to a language and a religion. From II world war was the first counting of inhabitants in the year 2002, in which was a column nationality. We lead protests against noting the nationality in additive leafs in a pencil. This problem was solved just 2 weeks before the termination of the addition and we have real mistrusts that it was manipulated with this issue. We register some concrete individual. About a faithlessness of this addition tells us also one interesting fact. It was shown out that just 10 till 30 per cent of people out of estimated counts have signed themselves to minorities. To the most numerous German minority was signed merely 147 000 inhabitants (following the forecasts there are 450 000 inhabitants), to the Ukrainian 27 000 (350 000), Byelorussian 47 000 (250 000), Ruthenian 5 800 (30 000), Lithuanian 5 000 (25 000) etc.. We were also surprised that there were inhabitants who pointed out that they had Spišska or Oravska nationality and they were classified as a polish nationality. Silesians are a big problem. Their association isn’t allowed in Poland. Just before the addition they presented complains to a Court of Justice in Strasburg in case that polishes law-courts didn’t want to register their association. To this nationality was signed more then 190-thousand of inhabitants. But adjudication of the Court of Justice in Strasburg confirmed the validity of a judgment of polish law-courts.

Have you already received a reply to the complaints?
Yes, additive commission in Vojvodina has accepted that our complaints are unique and that the addition wont be repeated. After the second complaint, two weeks before the end of the addition, statewide additive commission forbid use of pencil and ordered that all notes have to be written in the additive leaf by pen.

How do you evaluate an actual place of Slovak minority in Poland?
The place of minorities is problematic because there isn’t any law about their defense. Judicial article 35 in Polish Constitution says, that in case of minorities, they have the identical laws as the rest of inhabitants but there are no supplementary instructions, which would determine and undertake our laws. The agreement with Vatican says that if there are minorities living, the ecclesiastic life has to be organized in the language of the minority. It isn’t so. The Law about minorities is the longest legislated law in Poland from the year 1989.

Germans have their representatives in polish Sejm. In the long term they have aimed at accepting of the law about minorities...
Yes, it is true, however, they have only three representatives in Sejm. They try to enforce the law but they cant do a lot about it because there aren’t a lot of them to do so. The prevailing minority left has problems in retaining its domination. It is resolving “more important” laws. In this issue the political will is missing.

What don’t you like the most on minority politics in Poland? Did you present any submissions?
We asked the help from Slovak political representation, however we remained misunderstood. They were always telling us that we’d be helped when we affiliated to NATO. I confess the fact that from certain time I cease to understand the Slovak external politics. It is mysterious for us and I am disappointed of it. We aren’t emigrants; we are “old settlers” from Spis and Orava. We just want Slovakia to mention this fact by designing of various bilateral contracts. Poland sustains that it is following global agreements in observation of laws of minorities. But in fact, everything is “double-tracked”. There are many differences between laws and reality. For example at the Ministry of Culture works a department for national minorities. There work many specialists who try to solve problems. But their submissions aren’t respected. They are in a shadow of the politics, which doesn’t have an interest to lead affairs forward. Ministry of Culture cannot retire finances for investments, maintenance and rental of federal buildings. According to law the state can finance neither general expense by the association of national minorities. So if we want to do something and develop a national living we must look for finances through various grants, benefactions, and business activities. And this is very difficult because our association is based on a voluntary activity.

What does the state finance to minorities then?
It supports just publishing of magazines (covers 75% of costs) and culture activities. Our retrieval is a printing office. Through the editorial activity we are able to gain some resources at least for overhead costs of activities of our association. With reference to an educational system, the salary of teachers is covered by the state. In this time we don’t have any guest teacher. In the past we had also an employee occupied with methodic but now we don’t have any. We miss also Slovak books, especially contemporary literature. Polish publisher publishes schoolbooks, which are prepared by our teachers.

It is told that today only center of Slovak life in Poland is a village Jablonka in Orava. Is it true?
Partially. Another centers still are: Krempachy and Nova Bela at Spis.

Who is a holder of Slovak living in Poland - intelligence or farmers?

Do Slovaks have their representation in local and regional self-government (mayors, parliamentarians....)?
No, they don’t. Even though I know two mayors who have Slovak origin. But they don’t endorse officially to Slovaks.

How often are Slovak worship celebrated in villages of Orava and Spiš?
Although we still have just one Slovak clergyman in Nedeci, Slovak masses are celebrated in Jablonka and in six municipal corporations in Spis - in Kacvin, Nedec, Vysne Lapse, Krempachy, Nova Bela and Jurgow. Polish clergymen, who have learnt Slovak a little bit, celebrate them. Even though we reflect to the contract, which has Poland signed with Vatican we don’t reach bigger achievements. After the year 1989 Jan arnogurský had lent us a hand, but by now there was nobody to do so for a long time. If the curia in Krakow can send 60 clergymen to Slovakia it bother us that in Poland can so far be just one Slovak clergyman. We would be pleased if there was bigger tension from the part of Convent of Slovak Bishops at their polish colleagues.

What do you think about a national sense of young Slovak generation?
There are 350 children registered at our basic schools and secondary grammar schools. We can talk about some group, which still has Slovak privities. However, in general, the deal is that parents decide about which schools would they register their children in. The unique Slovak elementary school is in Nova Bela and we also have 44 children in a seminary in Jablonka. Our birth rate goes down. After the reorganization of educational system, when self-governments rationalized the net of schools because of financial reasons, the number of children went down about 50 per cent. At polish schools in Spis and Orava the Slovak language is taught as an optional subject. Children can learn Slovak history and ethnic just in frames of Slovak language classes. For this reason we organize for our children language camps to Slovakia, in which they improve their Slovak language. In this we are supported by Slovak Ministry of Education, which covers the costs of stay of children, and Academy of Education in Martin, with which we organize summer language camps in Slovakia. We would like to continue in organizing of these camps but in this time we have a problem with their financing. Last year we had problems, because the grant, which we obtained for this purpose from the Ministry of Culture SR in amount of 150-thousand Slovak crowns, was recoverable pending 15 January 2004. But camps were realized in July 2003.

Do the children come back to their villages after they finish studies at the secondary school? Or do they remain in big cities, or leave for Western Europe?
They come back. Some of them continue their studies at polish universities and after their graduation they disappear in within big cities. They cannot study in Slovakia in this time.

Why is it so?
In frames of bilateral contracts in the area of educational system we always had and also today we have a possibility to send our children to Slovak universities- graduates of secondary and basic schools (about 5 graduates). As in Slovakia still are not private universities, to which is possible to enter, our children cannot comply with strict criteria of an acceptance to Slovak public universities. These children they have only one handicap -they do not manage the qualitative specialistic terminology in Slovak language, because they don’t have where to learn it in Poland. According to the previous contract, which was valid to 20 December 2002, they could sign themselves to a language-preparing course - to a zero class. But This possibility didn’t come to a new contract - “Program of Co-operation Between Ministry of Education of Slovak Republic and Ministry of Public Education of Poland” for years 2003 - 2006, which was on behalf of MS SR (Ministry of Education of Slovak Republic) and in secret signed by ambassadress of Slovak Republic in Poland Magda Vášáryová. I have decline against this and I’ll continue declining also in a future. Unfortunately, from the part of M. Vášáryová I met only with rude invectives. Polish are satisfied. We don’t understand what do they expect by this, what interests, Slovak or some another? Practice is very strange. On the meeting of national officials in “Dom zahranicných slovákov” (House of foreign Slovaks) in Bratislava, which took place on 6 February 2004, Zlatica Havlikova, directress of the House of Foreign Intercourses of Ministry of Education of SR, called representatives of Slovak associations... “To watch arrangements and realization of an international agreements and contracts between home country and SR and to request their Ministries of Education the insertion of their exigencies in full context to the international contracts, of those which are observed mutually. It is necessary to use formal ways and formal contacts. Who understands this posture? Polish and Slovak Ministry of Education and Slovak embassy keep in a secret the content of the prepared scholastic contract. It is very sad. Slovak minority does not need excellent experts but average academical educated people. If any polish finishes studies at any secondary school in abroad, there is no problem in his acceptance to any university in Poland. Why isn’t it possible also in Slovakia?

Do Slovaks disappear in Poland?
Not yet. We struggle for their survival. We need an active politics and support to get our children to Slovak schools in Slovakia.

Will the opening of frontier with Poland in May 2004 help to revitalize Slovak minority?
Certainly yes, but also Slovak legislation must be opened towards foreign Slovaks. Law about foreign Slovaks didn’t bring anything for us. The evidence of Slovak nationality in Poland is very complicated, because Slovaks don’t have any documents. Who can prove them and in accordance with what it can be proved that they are Slovaks if polish legislation hasn’t noticed the term “nationality”? In the previous times we certificate a justification about the origin for everyone who signed in to our association. Actually I had to confirm this to my own dad, because I have been an assistant secretary of the Association already for third operational period... According to contemporary law about foreign Slovaks we have a right to work in Slovakia. This is the unique advantage of this law. But almost nobody from our nationals works in Slovakia. We have 7 students in Slovakia, but these children cannot set up the students’ discounts because they don’t have a permanent address in Slovakia. According to legislative about foreign Slovaks they can set up these discounts when they reach 70 years. But this is already out of our interest. Up to the year 1999 our students had to pay even for the entrance visa to Slovakia! Neither Slovak embassy in Warsaw, which has refused our demand several times, wants to help us in this case. When we succeeded at least in October 2001 and an actual Foreign Secretary Eduard Kukan accepted our arguments that a student who is a keeper of a foreign Slovak license in fact doesn’t need the entrance visa and that this is one of the ways of supporting the nationals, the Slovak ambassadress in Warsaw M. Vášáryová scolded me that I am evading her. They don’t think of us at all in Slovakia. Slovak legislation is anti-nationalistic. Also in this time when there was made an act about recompense of ex-partisans, our grandfathers, Slovak national uprising participants, can’t enforce this claim just because they live in Poland and don’t have their permanent address in Slovakia. Benefits and another advantages are bonded to the permanent address. It is sad because these people have never left Slovakia. But Slovakia has left them. It seems to me that it’s too unfair…

Do the businessmen support you?
No, we don’t have this social order.

Will the castle of Markušovce wait to see its second renaissance?
´I wish I returned to my homeland and renewed the castle I have been emotionally connected with. I want to build up a guesthouse there. I really appreciate this site and my predecessors who contributed to the development of Spiš and the country; they did not hesitate and sacrificed themselves, ´ says Peter Máriássy, the castle nobleman.

It is Sunday morning. The sun is shining and I am sitting in the car and I am approaching by the road full of holes to the small village of Markušovce, approximately four kilometres from Spišská Nová Ves in Eastern Slovakia. I can see a summer mansion in front of me, a former distillery (nowadays it is a fire station). I have noticed a Jewish cemetery in the ditch near the road. I estimate at least 30 gravestones there. On the hill situated on the left side, there is a gypsy colony; on the right side the ridge of the High Tatras can be been beyond. I enter to the village slowly. I have noticed some damaged and restored historical buildings, castle where the Museum of National History and Geography is. ´ Turn right at the Municipal Council and drive up. ´ Then turn left and park next to the mortuary, ´ navigates my co-driver Peter Máriássy, the owner of a not very big but lovely medieval castle.´

New Kosovo Violence is Start of Predicted 2004 Wave of Islamist Operations: the Strategic Ramifications
The major wave of violence instigated in the Kosovo region of Serbia on beginning on about March 14, 2004, and escalating dramatically through March 18, 2004, is the start of the forecast series of unrest, guerilla warfare and terrorist activity planned by radical Islamist leaders in Bosnia, Albania, Iran and in the Islamist areas of Serbia, and directly linked with the various al-Qaida-related mujahedin and terrorist cells in the area.

Attempts have already been made to blame the violence on the very small Serbian population which remains in Kosovo, but this is not credible, and nor has the Serbian Government shown any enthusiasm to get involved in the situation.Sources confirm that the violence, which began on March 17, 2004, and continued to escalate through March 18, 2004, is not an isolated expression of frustration, but, rather, part of a planned “season” of unrest designed explicitly to pull US and Western strategic focus away from Iraq, and to ensure that US and Western peacekeeping forces - which have been progressively diverted to Iraq operations and away from Kosovo and Bosnia - will need to be held in the Balkans. The purposes are multifold:
1. To remove US and Western focus on Iraq, thereby relieving pressure on Iran’s clerical leadership and helping to ensure the retention of Iranian capability to link, via Iraq, with Syria;
2. To demonstrate the failure of the Western “war on terror” and specifically to discredit those Western leaders who supported the war in the run-up to elections in the US and Australia;
3. To create a climate of instability around the Olympic Games, scheduled for August 2004 in Athens, and which feature as a major target for unrest and terrorism;
4. To consolidate Islamist control over parts of the Balkans, specifically the so-called “green transversal”1 belt which links the Adriatic Coast through Albania, FYR of Macedonia, the Serbian Kosovo and Metohija region, the southern Serbia/northern Montenegro Raška (Sandzak) region, through the Gorazde Corridor into Bosnia, not only as a terrorist corridor but also to facilitate a clear highway for narco-trafficking and weapons shipments.

Eagle without wings
“My birth and my death - that will be my full living,” estimated correctly son and descendent of Napoleon Bonaparte. Francis I, cared about his grandson royally. The boy had everything what he wanted but he didn’t know the true love at all. He met his father after 126 years. in grounded grave.

Napoleon Bonaparte died in the year 1821 on the island of Saint Helene. Ex- fright of Europe suffered a stomach cancer although there are still voices about restless assistance of English. A health state and a mental health of Napoleon were broken. Ignorance from the part of Mary Luis was still consumable but separation of his son, whom he last saw when he was two, not. Neither the son of Napoleon was much better with his health. Already from a child he suffered Bronchitis, vigorous cough and permanent cold. The story of Sissy who was miraculously cured in the South of Europe didn’t work in his case at all. However, for Metternich his journey out of Vienna, which could give rise to an international scandal after all, didn’t come to a consideration at all. So the health state of “eagle”, otherwise very handsome and intelligent adolescent, continued to decline. In year 1832, at the age of 21, he already laid on deathly beds. He was not able to shoot the sputum out so nurses had to wipe it out from his mouth. In his room, in which he laid, was an awful smell, so just few could resist more than a pair of minutes there. The mother of an unfortunate “eagle” found a bit of time for him a month before his death, although she had all disposable news about his health state. The last thing, which her son with hollow eyes said, was, “mother, I’m dying!” And 22 July 1832 the “eagle”, “Hectors son on a courtyard of Pyorrhea,” as he was called by a French poet Bartholomy, died. Mary Luis escaped from Vienna. She escaped to Parma, where she continued in changing of lovers until the end of living in the year 1847.

What is the sense of March 14th?
In an unequal struggle of David and Goliath Slovakia has only faint hope to become an industrial, agricultural, trade or financial empire. However, there are some presumptions for being the Empire of Spirit. Culture, education and science must become the priorities of the national politics of the Slovak state.
Josef M.Rydlo, a Member of the Slovak Institute, a chairman of the Union of Slovak Writers, Artists and Cultural Creators living away from Slovakia.

´History can be twisted but it can not falsify itself, ´wrote Jozef Cíger -Hronský in his novel The World in Moors; an ex long-life chairman of Slovak Cultural Society, whom malice, phantom of communism and the loss of Slovak state independence expelled him to exile in 1945 to be buried in faraway Argentina.

How is the European Union going to deal with many regional differences?
´116 million people in the European ´Twenty-Five´ (25 per cent of the overall population) will live in the region having Gross National Product (GNP) of 75 per cent per person below the average of the EU. There are 68 million people in the current ´Fifteen´. Four of ten citizens will be living the less developed regions in comparison to current members while other six are the citizens of integrating countries, ´says Rudolf Žiak, Member of Parliament (the Folk Union), the member of the Committee for regional politics, transport and tourism in the European parliament on behalf of fraction called the Union for Europe Nations.

“Build the house where the dog is lying.”
Are geopathological zones unhealthy? They influence the most effectively (and this is very bad for people) after the midnight until four o’clock in the morning. It was demonstrated that in human body there are many changes of the bioelectrical brain activity, thyroid activity, blood-vessel system defect and other health complications for an influence of these zones.

Walking in a nature; certainly everybody found out how beneficial is an effect of the nature on our organism, sanity, consuming, heart activity etc… And because of this we frequently ask ourselves, “Why is it so?“ Our body is always in an influence of the two strongest radiations - earth and cosmic radiation. It would be an ideal situation if these two radiations influenced us equally. But our dwellings are the most frequent cause of elevated earth radiance, which affects our health. It could affect person in a positive, or negative way. Specialists call those negatively affecting powers geopathogene zones or zones of geo-abnormal sphere.

I love so I exist, I dream also with reason
“I believe in my destiny. Marina is not just a nickname. It is my real name. Every real actress is in her “inbeing” a comedian. In French an actor is not just actor but mostly “un comédien”. Also the national theatre in Paris is called Comédie Francaise,“ says always-famous Mária Kráoviová.

I am very lucky on the earth - betrays native optimist, who was able to keep this advantage all her life. On the theatre scenes she has already been St. Jane, Valentine, Manon Lescaut and Marylin Monroe. But of all these hundreds of characters she was influenced the most by Sladkovi´s Marína. She had affected her so much that her colleagues and friends don’t give her other name as marina. Many spectators came and are coming to many performances in Komorne Divadlo (Komorne theatre) in Martin but especially to Slovenské Národné Divadlo - SND (Slovak National Theatre) in Bratislava, just for seeing her - seeing Mrs. Mária Kráoviová (76). She has spent respectable 55 years on the stage of SND so far.

Mrs. Kráoviová, do you like the nick name Marína or have you just suffered it for a long time?
Marina is not just a nickname. It is my name. It was given to me by Štefan Krméry, the first active poet that I have ever met in my life when I came to Martin with some incredible foresight. It is still one of the names colleagues, and those who like me, are calling me.

Andrei Smolák
Andrej Smolák is a painter, native from Humenne (1953) and a holder of the European prize of Franz Kafka. He is also a founder of an international scenic festival, plain air in Snina and a gallery MIRO. In his works he captures a spiritual or, as he says, astral universe. He focuses on a motif of reincarnation, sin, apocalyptic, erotic and love. His works (Attempts about a vision, Ramble of lonely souls, Delight by an old willow, On the cross of love) are attempts of a symbiotic relationship in this earthly living and in the living in unknown astral universe. It is the attempt of transition into some fifth measurement. The main idea of his pictures is a woman and everything connected to a phenomenon of “everlastingly womanlike”.

From Mr. Capital is Mr. Senator
He had left Washington after fourteen seasons, with gripe throat, and let himself out with Ottawa over Stanley Cup footprints. Everything suggests that Peter Bondra will not return to Slovakia and will remain in America.

German goalkeeper of Washington Capitals Olaf Kolzig called him Mr. Capital. Thinking of an allegiance for a club, in which had Peter spent fourteen seasons. Today it is false already. Mr. Capital became Mr. Senator. Goals of the fast Slovak right wing don’t raise from seats the fans of Washington but those who are the fans of Ottawa. Peter Bondra, 36 - years old Slovak ice-hockey hero, lives one from faulted seasons of his rich career.


Dimenzie No.3/2021Russian Assessment of Ukraine
Via Russia further to Asia
The port on the river Krka
Openness despite the past
Tragic balance,,Storms“
The right-wing circus dominated Slovakia
Let's build a common "Great Wall of Immunity"
The cult Rákoci manor house
Accession of Beijing in the Middle East
,, Little Verdun...Read more