If body language means anything in politics, I would say that Kovacevski’s goal is more important than the way he will achieve it, including the people who will obstruct his path. I have a feeling that this will also apply to those from his party who may plan, after the “post-traumatic stress” of Zaev’s departure, to waste his time with intra-party games.
Just as a river overflowed after a flood returns to its usual, central course, so SDSM with the personnel restructuring of the new president Dimitar Kovacevski seems to return to the forgotten, former party mainstream.
This formally ends the “Zaev era” in this party, which was characterized by the strong personal stamp that he left on the functioning of the Social Democrats, and the state in general. After the heroic rise of the years in opposition and, for life, the risky phase in seizing power from the firm, autocratic “embrace” of Gruevski and his regime, followed by several years of complicated inter-party turmoil in parliamentary “mathematics” to reach unpleasant compromises on a number of important issues, which led to a historic breakthrough of Macedonia and Zaev himself in international politics.
For that, Zaev needed a party team that, for the most part, he personally chose, rather renewed from what he had inherited from Crvenkovski: more people from the Macedonian political province (of course, numerous Strumica residents), more representatives of non-majority ethnic groups. groups (which, as an epoch-making historical precedent, attracted many of them, especially Albanian supporters to the party ticket), but also much younger and inexperienced party-political staff, with great business management enthusiasm. That, insiders say, has kept the party’s value-based ideological debate to a minimum, and the leader’s charisma and energy – and his quick “telephone” fingers – have overshadowed most doubts about whether all policies are well thought out and implemented wisely. Sekerinska – and the “icon” in part of the party structure of SDSM – we heard, she had serious problems with such an approach, although never to the level of open conflict with Zaev.
At the same time, shaky and a bit “piano”, the society democratically consolidated on several important issues, such as the freedom of public expression and interethnic relations: today “murmurs” who wants how much and where, and the concept of “One society for all”, although practically untrained, it became a general party Macedonian fashion as the bell-ringers (with a low waist – blah!) suddenly flooded the world boutiques. The promising “justice” is stuck in the inexhaustible Macedonian judicial and social reform swamp, in which corruption quickly realized that it would not be defeated in the first place.
In that arduous multi-year political marathon, with unusually numerous and exhaustingly intense ups and downs, Zaev did not serve a little more luck: the two-year pandemic cut the “wings” of what could have been a solid economic and social recovery, and Bulgaria and the European Union took care to inflict the last, “mortal” blow on his political career. With the consistent support of the inevitable DUI as a “necessary evil” of every Macedonian ruling table.
Well, just as, underestimated, Zaev appeared “out of nowhere” when SDSM needed him the most, so abruptly, maybe overestimated, he leaves the party scene when it was least expected… There are various “legends” about whether his withdrawal is impulsively, whether it is externally motivated or carefully calculated, but that history has yet to be told. Among other things, from what and how his successor will do, whom Zaev “personally” promoted with the final authority of his political abdication.
Elem, Dimitar Kovacevski yesterday promoted his leadership team, “renewed” with more old party cadres, “tested hands” from the party technology of the Social Democrats, with which SDSM “will be reorganized, will continue to democratize and modernize.” The time is short, the needs are urgent, and the information is scarce, in order to assess who sponsored everything in this personnel “restoration”, but the impression is that a dozen of the most important people in Zaev’s entourage go with a sense of betrayal to “premature” party “pension”.
If nothing else, that alone should be a sign to the opposition that the offensive qualification “Zaev’s pawn”, with which he has been trying to disavow Kovacevski for a whole month, will have to be replaced as soon as possible with a new kind of disqualification, something maybe less simple-minded, which would describe their anger towards him in a more complex way, due to the fact that they failed to overthrow this Government with a quick parliamentary coup. Something that will change the rhythm with which SDSM wants to continue to rule, without Zaev.
Because, Kovacevski leaves the impression of a leader who is in a hurry, who will not have time, nor too much desire to deal with the ornamental political “legacy” of Zaev. Kovacevski made the midnight promotion of the new leadership team of the party in bursts, as if he were reading a report without a single dramatic break or a trace of emotion, as if he wanted to go through that formality as soon as possible, in order to start a specific managerial job.
If body language means anything in politics, I would say that the goal is more important to him than the way he will achieve it, including the people who will block his way. I have a feeling that this will also apply to those from his party who may plan, after the “post-traumatic stress” of Zaev’s departure, to waste his time with intra-party games. It does not seem to me that he is ready to continue the “comrade” methodology in the implementation of policies, as Zaev charmingly did. On the contrary, it seems that Kovacevski will fulfill the norm more important than the expansion of social capital. We will soon deal with the dilemma not whose it is, but who Kovacevski is?
However, the “aggregate” situation in which the government is now will leave no more than 5-6 months of time for Kovacevski to show what he knows and what he can achieve with the party and the Government. Then the “warranty period” for complaints expires.