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    The NATO symbol and flags of the NATO nations outside NATO headquarters in Brussels on Sunday, March 2, 2014

    Montenegro-NATO: Brainwashing Instead of Discussion

    © AP Photo / Virginia Mayo
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    The Montenegrin MPs’ recently stated desire to join NATO amid a hard-hitting economic crisis and the lack of democratic oversight of the country’s political elite is just another show meant for public consumption, the leader of the opposition Demos party said on Wednesday.

    Miodrag Lekic said that with no official invitation from NATO yet in sight, “exalted” attempts to crash the alliance’s gates were  widely seen an being contrary to the country’s traditions and are also meant to divert public attention away from real problems the country is now facing.

    “While the big shots in Podgorica are hell-bent on joining the Western defense alliance, over 50 percent of ordinary Montenegrins are against this,” Lekic noted. 

    “NATO leaders keep saying that in order to join in, a country needs to meet two main conditions: to demonstrate tangible results of its fight against corruption and the stated will of the majority of its people. Neither condition has been met and if NATO members decide to give up on these two criteria, they risk losing popular trust both inside Montenegro and elsewhere in the world,” Miodrag Lekic emphasized.

    “I, just like the majority of my countrymen, believe that the issue of NATO membership must be put to a nationwide referendum,” he added.

    His opinion was fully echoed by independent MP Mladen Bojanic, who said that the official campaign for NATO membership should be provided for public discussions on the matter.

    “However, this has nothing to do with democracy, because we are not hearing any criticism of the alliance during these discussions. Which effectively turns the so-called Speaking Tour into a Brainwashing Tour,” Bojanic said.


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