Articles by Arlind Qori

About Arlind Qori

Arlind Qori works as a lecturer of political philosophy in the University of Tirana, Albania. He is also an activist at the radical leftist organisation Organizata Politike.

Albania and China: the reemergence of an old friendship?

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 ..

Great Albanian Oil Robbery

This piece originally appeared on the Serbo-Croatian language portal, Bilten. It is reproduced here with generous permission from their editors. The last time I wrote about the oil industry in Albania was the spring of 2015. An enormous eruption of natural gas and oil occurred near the village of Patos-Marinzë, in southern Albania, where the Canadian-based company Bankers Petroleum has been drilling for years. Some people got injured, homes were partially destroyed and, more importantly, many inhabitants of the area and of nearby villages have continuously reported an increasing number of diseases linked to this ..

Healthcare tailored to the interests of capital

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 ..

Property Claims as Social Power Struggle in Albania

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 ..

Crime or Ideology? A Critical Note on Albanian Corruption

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 ..

Can the dead be resurrected? The impossibility of politicizing mainstream parties in Albania

Jeremy Corbyn’s conquest of the Labor leadership position and the advancement of Bernie Sanders in the Democrats’ race to the White House show that there can be still life in the atrophied bodies of the once-called social-democracies of the West. What’s interesting politically about these outsiders from the Left is their capacity to embody grass-root new social movement while using the remnants of organized trade-unionism and rank and file party members. But what are the odds that something similar might happen to the Albanian mainstream parties? The current Albanian political system conforms to a 2+1 model ..

The rise and fall of the Albanian migrant working force

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 ..

The neoliberalization of Albanian higher education

One of the last public strongholds to be taken and transformed along neoliberal lines has been higher education. First introduced in Chile, and afterwards in other Latin America countries, these reforms are about to be experimented on even in Albania. Coming from a Stalinist socialist past, since the nineties Albania has been one of the testing grounds for neoliberal reforms. For example in the first half of the nineties the IMF considered Albania one of the models other East European countries should follow. The fact that that model ended in the Ponzi scheme financial bubble of 1997 didn’t shake the IMF from ..

Welcome to the dystopian Neverland: Albania, a country in which public transportation will become the ultimate luxury

Imagine a country that once was considered the last stronghold of Stalinist socialism. A country that after the velvet revolution quickly became the apt pupil of the IMF, was one of the first to implement neoliberal reforms, and was also considered in the early nineties by none other than the IMF to be the ideal model of neoliberal capitalist restructuring. Imagine a country whose deindustrialization and mass privatization were shattering, whose unemployment reached its peak and was countered only by mass emigration to the West, especially to Greece and Italy. A country, a large part of whose working class curren ..