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Gorenak Speaks From Experience: It Was Always The Left That Excluded

In his book, he wrote that he wanted to be a salesman, but life took him to a completely different profession. How this happened was explained, among other things, by the guest of this week’s episode of the show Intervju (Interview) on RTV Slovenia, Vinko Gorenak. The show Interview is hosted by Jože Možina. Gorenak was launched into politics by the Vič-Holmec affair, and was later elected three times as a Member of Parliament on the list of the Slovenian Democratic Party (Slovenska demokratska stranka – SDS). The guest explained with concrete examples how the SDS party has always invited other parliamentary parties to work with it, whenever possible. However, on the left, Gorenak said, they are pursuing an increasingly radical policy of exclusion.

Vinko Gorenak’s career path has taken him from the role of a policeman to lecturer, MP, State Secretary and Minister of the Interior. In his episode of the show Interview, he talked about his career decision, which was influenced by a teacher who steered him towards grammar school. Gorenak is concerned about the future of Slovenia and Europe and warns of the erosion of European Christian values. Migration and low birth rates are a major problem for the existence of Europe as we know it.

“Life, especially when I was young, had turned me into a socially conscious person, and according to this logic, I should be in social democracy,” Gorenak said with a smile, adding that he is an extremely emotional person. Gorenak also explained at length his experience and the tasks they had to perform as policemen, which he said was something he did not understand at the time. “We were given some strange tasks, that is, to visit these people, to ask them about the situation in those environments where they lived – who would act against Yugoslavia and so on, these were the tasks we got. And interestingly enough, just before independence, the latest instructions in this area came out, which were written at today’s Štefanova Street 2 (the location of today’s Ministry of the Interior) in Ljubljana,” he said.

Interviewer Možina also reminded him of the horrors in Teharje, especially since he had covered that area as commander of the Celje Police, but Gorenak said that he had no knowledge of anything being wrong until he spoke to his mother-in-law, who told him about it, he explained further in the interview. At the time of the collapse of the former regime, he served on the police commission to transform the “people’s” police into a modern Western-style police force. “In 1990, Igor Bavčar included me in his team of people in the ministry, and at that time, I was the uniformed regional chief,” Gorenak said. He explained that he had until 10 a.m. the next day to contact the cabinet about some changes, and Gorenak said it was the shortest conversation he had ever had in his life. In the cabinet, he told those called up, “I have a one-party police in front of me, and we need to turn this system into a police force similar to Western Europe,” he explained. “We made a mistake here, or rather two mistakes…” admitted Gorenak, because they changed nothing except the name. They have done nothing to depoliticise the police, he admitted, which is why this institution, which should be non-political, is, in his view, heavily tilted to the left, politically speaking.

Gorenak: it makes you speechless

In one of his stories, Gorenak also talked about an event in 2011, when they had a training session for police officers. “It was at the beginning of May, and this commander, 20 years younger than me, has 20 or 40 future police officers in front of him, whom he was teaching,” Gorenak says, and goes on to say that the commander lined them up and started with the sentence: “Do you know what happened in May 1980? Yes, of course – these people born in the 90s are looking at each other a little bit puzzled, a little bit curious about what is going to happen, and he goes on, saying – of course, you don’t know anything, logically you don’t know anything, Comrade Tito died, a man who is credited for Yugoslavia, a man, who is credited for Slovenia, we lived in the best country in Yugoslavia and he is credited for an independent Slovenia and also for the fact that you will become policemen,” Gorenak explained in horror, adding that something like this makes one “speechless.” He went on to confide in Možina what was usually discussed at Bavčar’s house, including the unmasking of the Yugoslavian State Security Administration’s collaborators.

Gorenak never made it a secret that he was a member of the Communist party at the time, as it was a kind of ticket to the future and a kind of “normality”, but he also left it before Slovenia’s independence. On the fact that the SDS party repeatedly exposes itself as the political party that “excludes others”, Gorenak said that the SDS party has never said anywhere and at any time that it refuses to cooperate with any party. “In 2004, I was present at an event that is very telling. Janez Janša offered coalition cooperation to all political parties in Parliament, including the Social Democrats (Socialni demokrati – SD) and Borut Pahor. While Pahor and Janša were discussing cooperation in the cabinet, the SD party member Majda Potrata stood in front of the cabinet and told journalists that if Pahor cooperated with Janša, they would leave the party.”

Gorenak: This is not normal

“This civil society wrote the Radio-Television Slovenia Act – look at the situation, this is not normal. These civil society organisations and these individuals are actually running the country from behind the scenes. Does this seem normal to you? These are people who were not on any ballot paper, and today they are orchestrating who will be the Minister of Health,” said Gorenak, who went on to explain how he sees the government’s perspective. He believes that this coalition will last until 2026, that the Freedom Movement party (Gibanje Svoboda) will split because of dissatisfaction in the party, and that a change of prime minister is also possible, but that this political option will remain in power. As for the leadership of the Left party (Levica), he believes that the role of the leader does not play a role in the long term, because no matter who leads the party, the party will collapse. In terms of other political party relations, he shared his interesting views later in the interview.

He also believes that good cooperation between the government and the opposition was demonstrated in flood rehabilitation and in helping those affected, but at the same time, he recalled with bitterness the epidemic of Covid-19, when the opposition abused the plight of the people for its own political ends. He also believes that the left-leaning civil society’s main motive is to work in favour of the left-wing political option. Gorenak also expressed his concern with the future of Slovenia and Europe and warned of the erosion of European Christian values. In his view, migration and low birth rates are a major problem for the existence of Europe as we know it.

Ana Horvat

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