What PD and LSI leaders hope is that by withdrawing momentously from political privileges, such as the MP salary, they will be accepted by the popular classes as their genuine political representatives. In addition, they have tried to imitate some of the slogans, the gestures, and ideas of the student movement. They promise an uncompromising war against the oligarchs, and organized crime, tuition-free universities, the implementation of other important social rights, while maintaining, in a characteristic right-populist agenda, neoliberal economic policies like a 9% flat tax, and other pro-business mantra. Secret ..
This article is published in co-operation with the Serbo-Croatian portal Bilten. Chronology Tuesday, December, 4 was a normal day in Albania. The news went out that the students of the Faculty of Architecture were boycotting school. The reason was a governmental decision to charge students approximately 30 Euros for each postponed exam. The news spread like wildfire in each faculty of the public universities of Tirana. On Wednesday a few thousand students gathered in front of the Ministry of Education to call for the abrogation of the government’s decision. Encouraged by the burst of enthusiasm, the studen ..
Editors’ Note: Over the last three decades or so, the workplace has receded from visibility in scholarship and in cultural productions. This disappearance is a global phenomenon of the neoliberal era, but the shift in East European societies, which used to valorize labor in many ways, has been particularly extreme. To the outside observer, it is becoming increasingly difficult to imagine what people do upon entering the gates of their workplace. This is why articles such as the following one by Arlind Qori, about the employment options Albanians face and the attendant forms of violence, oppression, and expl ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: this piece has been published in cooperation with the Serbo-Croatian Left portal Bilten.Org. Nobody could have expected before the sixties that a tiny and a large country, 7000 thousands kilometers apart, the Popular Republic of Albania and the People’s Republic of China would forge a strong political alliance based on countering the Soviet Union and pushing forward an intransigent version of Marxist-Leninist ideology. For different reasons – from escaping the Soviet dependency to putting breaks to the destalinization process, Albania and China found themselves on the same sid ..
The following article was originally published by the Serbo-Croatian online platform, Bilten. It is republished here with that site’s kind permission. During the electoral campaign of 2013, the Socialist Party of Albania, then in opposition, made a stunning promise for a Third-Way party. Its chairman Edi Rama stressed that once in power the Socialists would implement universal public health care coverage, modeled after the British NHS. No more health care insurances, which left the unemployed or illegal workers without care, but a state-sponsored central agency, which was going to cover free health care for ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: this article has been published in collaboration with the Serbo-Croat web portal Bilten.Org Several days ago the European Court of Human Rights reached a verdict on contests between three property owners and the Albanian state. It held that the Albanian state owes the property owners 12 million Euros in compensation for not returning the properties that the Albanian law acknowledges as theirs. In the recent years the same court has imposed other financial penalties on the Albanian state for breaching what it considers basic human rights. It should be stressed that the jurisdictio ..
Note from the LeftEast editors: this article has been published in collaboration with the Balkan web-portal Bilten.org. The original publication in can be found here. Everything started in July 2014 after a fight in the corridors of the Albanian Parliament. Two members of parliament, Arben Ndoka and Pjerin Ndreu from the ruling Socialist Party, used their fists against a fellow MP of the oppositional Democratic Party, Genc Strazimiri. Some minutes before, Strazimiri was speaking against what he called the criminalization of the Parliament by the Socialist Party, by which he meant that several MP’s with cri ..
This article is published in collaboration with the Serbo-Croatian online web portal Bilten.Org One of the main characteristics of Albania’s post-socialist history has been the big wave of migration to the West that has been undertaken by the workforce, especially to Greece and Italy where most Albanian migrants have worked for more than two decades. This large-scale emigration has been triggered not only by the economic and political collapse of the really existing socialist formation, but also by the neoliberal process of vast privatizations and deindustrialization. Although official data are uncertain, it is ..