terça-feira, junho 27, 2006

A ajuda dos "amigos" golpistas. Os vencedores vão ouvir e calar...

The Australian

Editorial: The continuing crisis
June 27, 2006
Alkatiri's departure raises as many questions as it answers

MARI Alkatiri may have resigned, but East Timor's troubles are far from over. While the resignation of the controversial prime minister solves the country's immediate problem – namely, a crisis of government that pitched the country into chaos, led to the insertion of Australian troops into the nascent democracy and exposed its fundamental constitutional weaknesses – it does not fix any of the underlying defects that brought the situation about.
Although his Fretilin party retains a majority of seats in the East Timorese parliament, Mr Alkatiri's presence was clearly untenable, thanks in no small part to a campaign by his political rival President Xanana Gusmao. With his background as a former exile who spent 24 years living in Mozambique while the East Timorese fought for independence, Mr Alkatiri has long been regarded as out of touch with the people. His image problem was compounded by a Stalinist party management style and allegations that the prime minister had used violence to eliminate political opponents. Some armed squads were alleged to have been armed by former interior minister Rogerio Lobato, who himself was trained by Cambodia's notorious Khmer Rouge. Although it is not clear what exactly caused him to jump ship, Mr Alkatiri's departure raises two urgent questions: what next for East Timor and how much more hand-holding Australia will need to provide as the tiny half-island state matures into a democracy that can stand on its own two feet.

The brinkmanship leading up to Mr Alkatiri's resignation will be the subject of speculation for some time. But there is no getting around the fact that Australia mishandled much of its role midwifing the new state. Indeed, East Timor was something of a historical accident: in allowing 1999's independence vote, Indonesia's then president, BJ Habibie, did the one thing nobody expected, thanks in part to pressure from Australia.

The answer to the question on everyone's mind back then – whether East Timor is a sustainable nation-state – is not much clearer now than seven years ago. Certainly, the country is desperately poor. The Government reaps domestic revenues of $33 million, half the population is illiterate and per capita income for most East Timorese is stuck on US$1 ($1.37) a day. Yet this will change as East Timor begins to take an anticipated $15 billion in royalties and taxes from its share of offshore energy fields that were generously negotiated by Australia. All the more reason, then, that East Timor needs a stable and transparent government – and not one that has been captured by corruption and cronyism on the one hand and Marxist revolutionary politics on the other. Plans to keep resources revenue in a strictly accountable trust fund are a good start to prevent East Timor from following in the wake of Nauru, which frittered away its own resources boom.

As long as we are welcome, Australia will have to keep troops on the ground for the foreseeable future in East Timor. Accusations by Portuguese leftists that Canberra is engaged in a sort of neocolonialism by keeping the peace in East Timor aside, there is no other way to keep the country from sliding back into chaos.

For the moment, Mr Alkatiri's departure leaves East Timor no closer to having a head of government. Despite the accolades heaped on ex-foreign minister Jose Ramos Horta by the Western Left (Mr Gusmao is romantically celebrated as the "poet warrior") he – along with the entire Timorese elite – conducts state business in Portuguese, not the indigenous Tetum.

As such, the elite are far less popular at home than abroad. The same goes for Mr Ramos Horta's ex-wife, Minister for State Ana Pessoa, whose name has lately been bandied about as a contender.

Australian troops and police should stay to help one of the world's youngest nations emerge from what is proving a difficult infancy.


1 comentário:

Anónimo disse...

Last Updated: Monday, 26 June 2006, 12:48 GMT 13:48 UK

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E Timor's 'wrong kind of leader'
By Jonathan Head
South East Asia correspondent, BBC News

It was with a characteristically unemotional performance that Mari
Alkatiri announced the end of his - and East Timor's - first prime
ministerial term.

Mari Alkatiri has been blamed for all that has gone wrong
"Having reflected deeply on the present situation prevailing in the
country, assuming my own share of responsibility for the crisis, I
am ready to resign from my position as prime minister," he told a
press conference in Dili.
This, after weeks of pressure, during which he had repeatedly
insisted his resignation would solve nothing, and had received the
full backing of his party, Fretilin, which holds a majority of the
seats in parliament.
So why the change of heart?
Mr Alkatiri referred to his desire to avoid a threatened resignation
by President Xanana Gusmao - but that threat was made last week, and
then withdrawn, so it is difficult to understand why it would have
changed his mind now.
More likely it was the continued discussions with his colleagues in
government on how to get East Timor out of the mess it is in that
persuaded Mr Alkatiri to go.
He has long been indifferent to his own unpopularity, but in the
current chaos the country needs a less divisive leader.
There was jubilation over the decision across the capital, Dili, and
probably in many other areas of East Timor.
Mr Alkatiri has become a hate-figure, blamed for everything that has
gone wrong in the country, and it was hard to see how rebuilding
confidence and stability after the traumatic events of the past few
weeks could start while he remained in office.
But was he really so bad?
Brusque manner
You hear many complaints about Mr Alkatiri, some of them obviously
I have often heard young people complain that he is a Muslim, as
though that is a crime in a supposedly democratic and tolerant

President Gusmao has a popularist touch
They also accuse him of being a communist, because of his left-wing
views and his long years living in Mozambique.
But these may at times have served East Timor well. His instinctive
mistrust of Western help led him to drive a very hard bargain with
Australia over East Timor's rights to oil and gas in the Timor Sea,
helped by his skills as a negotiator.
It is unlikely anyone else could have done as well for the country.
He also has a deep personal commitment to the sustainable
development of his country, and has tried hard to avoid too much aid
dependency - ideas formed during his African exile.
Much of his unpopularity is due to his brusque, business-like
He is an intellectual, impatient with people who express poorly
thought-out ideas.
He has never seemed able to empathise with the suffering experienced
by much of the population during the Indonesian occupation, or to
find the right words to comfort those who are often unable to
articulate what they feel about those years.
By contrast, President Gusmao is a master of the art of healing.
With a few simple words, or just a hug, he can move crowds to tears.

Shortage of talent
The two men who have been running the country since independence
could hardly have more different styles, and they have had a very
uneasy relationship with each other.
Much of that goes back to Mr Gusmao's distrust of the Fretilin
party, which he blames for harsh treatment of its rivals during the
bitter struggle against Indonesian rule.
Mr Alkatiri is a consummate party man - Fretilin reaffirmed its
backing for him three times in recent weeks, the last time less than
24 hours before he resigned.
The party remained loyal to the end, but he was arguably the wrong
kind of leader for a country as traumatised as East Timor.

Crowds have been calling for Mr Alkatiri to go for weeks
More serious are the charges against Mr Alkatiri of corruption, and
abuses of power.
Some of these will now be examined by an internationally-supervised
investigation, as East Timor's infant judiciary is not up to the
Some corruption is perhaps inevitable, given the traditions of
patronage and money-politics that prevail elsewhere in the region,
but the charges of abusing his power are more serious.
A documentary by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Four
Corners programme claims to have documentary evidence that Mr
Alkatiri tacitly approved of the distribution of police weapons to
civilians - a charge that has already led to the arrest of former
Interior Minister Rogerio Lobato, at one time an ally of the prime
Mr Alkatiri has denied the charges, and the prosecutor-general says
he has not yet uncovered any evidence against him.
Certainly the murky events leading up to and after the fateful
decision by Mr Alkatiri to endorse sacking more than a third of the
army earlier this year need more investigation.
The fact that he was re-elected at the Fretilin party congress last
month by a show of hands, rather by a secret ballot, does not
reflect well on his democratic values.
But it is also worth remembering that East Timor has few capable
Education levels are among the world's lowest, and the long years of
conflict under Indonesia's occupation, and Indonesia's chaotic
withdrawal in 1999, left few local people with experience of
Mari Alkatiri is among the best they have. The country can
ill-afford the loss of his abilities.

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Todas as traduções de inglês para português (e também de francês para português) são feitas pela Margarida, que conhecemos recentemente, mas que desde sempre nos ajuda.

Obrigado pela solidariedade, Margarida!

Mensagem inicial - 16 de Maio de 2006

"Apesar de frágil, Timor-Leste é uma jovem democracia em que acreditamos. É o país que escolhemos para viver e trabalhar. Desde dia 28 de Abril muito se tem dito sobre a situação em Timor-Leste. Boatos, rumores, alertas, declarações de países estrangeiros, inocentes ou não, têm servido para transmitir um clima de conflito e insegurança que não corresponde ao que vivemos. Vamos tentar transmitir o que se passa aqui. Não o que ouvimos dizer... "

Malai Azul. Lives in East Timor/Dili, speaks Portuguese and English.
This is my blogchalk: Timor, Timor-Leste, East Timor, Dili, Portuguese, English, Malai Azul, politica, situação, Xanana, Ramos-Horta, Alkatiri, Conflito, Crise, ISF, GNR, UNPOL, UNMIT, ONU, UN.