“Be careful, this is a declaration of war, an instruction to the prosecutors and the courts,” Boštjan M. Zupančič, who was a judge of the European Court of Human Rights for many years.
Some kind of Union of Soldiers’ Association (Zveza združenj borcev – ZZB) event was held, for the values of the War of Liberation (Narodnoosvobodilni boj – NOB) yesterday on Ilova Mountain. Milan Kučan, the last communist party boss in the socialist regime, commented on the freedom of speech in Slovenia. He conveyed two very dangerous theses: first, that “hate speech is strengthening in Slovenia and threatens peace” and to which the Slovenian state must respond; and secondly, that it is necessary to “end the ignorant surrendering to obvious examples of hate speech, racism and intolerance with the excuse that this action would constitute an unacceptable interference with freedom of speech and the return to previous times.”
Why is this dangerous? Because this is a direct instruction, as Boštjan M. Zupančič said. Remember how the Patria affair was announced in August 2008? The newspaper Nedeljski dnevnik then announced it, on behalf of Milan Kučan, with meaningful words: “… where is Milan Kučan? Did he withdraw, is he scared, or will he make a loud political crackdown? The truth is, he did not get scared, but he retreated, because everything is ready for the big bang.” A few days later, this announcement of a big bang came true and it did not only leave a mark on the 2008 elections, but also on subsequent ones, all the way to the elections four years ago.
This time, Kučan announced the war against those who think differently. With the words that hate speech threatens peace, he actually gave instructions to the prosecutors, since the necessary condition for Article 297 of the Penal Code, which sanctions hate speech, is the “threatening of public order and peace.”
“Now, they will attempt to legally fabricate this, just like they did with dr. Strehovac,” wrote Boštjan M. Zupančič on Twitter, while Tomaž Štih asked: “Will the socialist pogroms that have been hitherto directed against successful entrepreneurs and visible Catholics now be extended to the whole population?”
But his words are even more sinister, it is “necessary to end”, which is understood as a direct order to the Šarec government, the prosecutor’s office and the judges, to use the entire repression apparatus against the dissidents and to punish them.