OPINION

Misfocus

The first generation of the post-1974 period did not demonstrate in Sunday’s Polytechnic march, but many people actually turned a deaf ear to those who for days had cultivated panic on television – far more than those who participated in the marches in recent years. And there were many Cypriot flags, obviously in response to the «historic opportunity» offered by the recently disclosed UN plan and its provisions for a confederal solution. All these messages, however, were ignored by the media, which focused their cameras on other, more sensational aspects. «Athens turns into battlefield» and «A night of terror» read the cliches on the screen. Unless the viewers watched the broadcast image (a shed was on fire after someone hurled a Molotov cocktail), they would be led to believe that the entire city was in flames. But the riots were sparse compared to previous years, and the idea of several channels to hire roofs with a view of the Polytechnic failed to pay off. Their appetite for violence remained unfulfilled, as even those who shamelessly tried to benefit from confusing the November 17 anniversary with the name of the dismantled terrorist group were sidelined. Nor is it accidental or politically insignificant that those who concentrated on the Molotov cocktails completely downgraded a serious trolley-bus incident that occurred near the Polytechnic. After beating some Asian immigrants late Saturday, about 15 members of the Chryssi Avgi neo-Nazi party stabbed, punched and kicked the citizens who tried to stop them. It’s not the first time that neo-fascists have assaulted natives and foreigners, but now that the local elections are over, politicians have no reason to be concerned. And, who knows, perhaps in 30 years they will receive commemorative medals like those senior officials who participated in the 1974 military coup on Cyprus.