George Iordanou Politics, Philosophy and (not much) Real Life

cyprus problem

The two leaders’ meeting makes me feel… nothing

We hardly have anything in common with the president of the Republic of Cyprus. We come from different ideological, political and moral worlds, and our priorities and viewpoints in life are diametrically opposed. Nevertheless, and although I never voted for him, I have been a strong supporter of his efforts to reunify the island in the only realistic way that I think possible; namely through a federal state with territorial rights to its constituent parts. Make what you will with this but I don’t think there is any other way to solve the Cyprus problem besides a bizonal, bicommunal, federal state, which makes me increasingly suspicious towards those who reject it without offering any plausible alternative. When the negotiations collapsed I was so devastated that I needed a few days...

The enosis fiasco signified a new low

What I find most disappointing is not that the whole enosis debacle almost led to the collapse of the negotiations, though it is deeply disheartening to see two leaders almost giving up on a joint Nobel peace prize for the sake of satisfying the extremists within the bounds of their respective communities. Rather, what I find most disconcerting is that mainstream political parties decided to support a bill promoted by the self-professed sister party of the Greek Golden Dawn. And let’s not kid ourselves – it is by now evident to anyone possessing the slightest sense of dignity and reason, that the Golden Dawn, and by extend, ELAM, are full-blown neo-nazi parties and not the mere nationalists they so desperately portray themselves to be. Whereas in other countries mainstream parties form...

Setting red lines

​Setting red lines is really not a good idea. When one sets a red line, he proclaims that some options are off the table. He specifies how much he is willing to go in relation to a contested issue, effectively showing off all of his cards at once. Sometimes red lines are genuine, other times they are symbolic or a product of political maneuvering. Proclaiming something as non-negotiable is costly and should be done only with full awareness of the potential cost. Red lines are maybe useful when discussing the terms of the negotiations; that is, the conditions and the format of the negotiations, especially when there is room for getting once’s own prior to the actual diplomatic process. Otherwise, red lines render one vulnerable to the label of the aggressor; you become the person to...

Ζώνες και αποκλειστικά δικαιώματα

Δημοσιεύτηκε στο Φιλελεύθερο (31/9/15) και την Καθημερινή (8/9/15) Η Διζωνική Δικοινωτική Ομοσπονδία είναι το συνταγματικό μοντέλο πάνω στο οποίο θα βασίζεται η οποιαδήποτε επικείμενη λύση. Η Διζωνικότητα είναι το πλέον αμφιλεγόμενο κομμάτι του υπό διαπραγμάτευση συνταγματικού μοντέλου, καθώς εξασφαλίζει στην κάθε κοινότητα συγκεκριμένα εδαφικά δικαιώματα. Δηλαδή, οι δυο κοινότητες, οι οποίες εκ των πραγμάτων είναι εθνικά διαχωρισμένες, θα ορίζουν διαφορετικές γεωγραφικές περιοχές. Άτομα και πολιτικά σύνολα που διαφωνούν με τη διζωνικότητα, όπως για παράδειγμα η ΕΔΕΚ, ισχυρίζονται ότι η διζωνικότητα δεν υφίσταται ως πολιτικός όρος, και ότι η Κύπρος χρησιμοποιείται ως πειραματόζωο στα πλαίσια υλοποίησης ενός ρατσιστικού γεωγραφικού διαχωρισμού με βάση τις εθνικές ταυτότητες. Οι...

The UN and the EU should use their carrots to steer towards a multicultural solution

Published in the Cyprus-Mail under the title “Role upgrade needed for EU and UN,” May 21st, 2015. Greek- and Turkish-Cypriots have not been able to solve the Cyprus problem between them. Neither have they been able to solve it through the involvement of their respective motherlands. The Cyprus problem will only be solved through the United Nations and the European Union, who are already involved in the process, and who should use the carrots that they hold in order to steer the two sides towards a multicultural solution. Bear with me, this is not yet another oft-repeated Cyprob cliché. The aforementioned intergovernmental organisations must promote the respect of diversity and the rights of all people — including non-dominant national minorities (e.g. Maronites...

What it means to be a Greek-Cypriot?

Published in the Cyprus-Mail, May 17th 2015. In the case of Cyprus one must distinguish between the dual-meaning and usage of the dominant cultural identity. The identity and label of the Greek Cypriot (GC) can have two completely different meanings: there is a constitutional (civic) definition and a cultural definition. The civic definition is that which is found in the 1960 constitution of the Republic of Cyprus, where a GC is a member of the Greek national group. Nevertheless, the civic definition of being a Greek Cypriot includes Armenians, Latins and Maronites, who “chose” to join the GC ethnic group back in 1959, only months before the introduction of the new constitution, as well as recently naturalised third country nationals. As such, to be a GC in the civic sense...

Elections at DIKO: change of leadership, change of direction?

Nicolas Papadopoulos, the newly elected president of DIKO, is the son of the former president of the Republic of Cyprus Tassos Papadopoulos and is largely expected to follow the political path of his late father.
Nicolas has more robust preferences when it comes to the Cyprus problem, whereas the former president of DIKO, Marios Garoyian, was more flexible; something that can be verified by his alliances with both leftist AKEL and right wing DISY at the last two presidential elections.

George Iordanou Politics, Philosophy and (not much) Real Life

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