10 December 2018, Monday, 6:14
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National Dignity


Are we ready to stand together to defend the ideas that were laid in the foundation of the BPR a century ago?

I was surprised by the negative reaction of some representatives of our democratic movement to the proposal of the Belarusian National Congress to mark the 100th anniversary of the proclamation of the Belarusian People's Republic by holding a festive procession along the Independence Avenue in the capital.

This idea of the BNC does not interfere with any other initiatives: scientific conferences, meetings in the houses of culture, songs and dances in the neighborhoods, or family feasts in honor of the holiday. The only question is, do we really have national dignity? Are we ready, able to stand together to defend the ideas that were laid in the foundation of the BPR a century ago — especially the idea of independence ?.. If, instead of a decisive “Yes!”, manifesting in the national celebration of the anniversary of the Belarusian People's Republic, we will deal with clashes between the opposition groups, then the whole current democratic movement is worthless.

The government will be as worthless, if it takes advantage of the 100th anniversary of the BPR, not as an occasion for national harmony, for the consolidation of society in upholding the independence of the country, but for the prosecution and repression to suppress the dissent.

How to avoid it? Well, let's say, invite the BPR Rada, whose members would have also become members of the organizing committee for the celebration of the anniversary, to the event. This one step is enough to change the attitude to the event. Sweep away the garbage, bring down the dust rising above the national holiday and around.

The Belarusian National Congress can have and has no intention to embezzle the holiday. Our intention is to gather the organizing committee not only of the leaders of opposition groups, the leaders of the democratic movement, but also of representatives of the widest possible public.

We prepared invitations for Sviatlana Alexievich and Uladzimir Arlou, academician Haretski and artist Kupava, Mikhalok and Volski, Marachkin and Kureichik, Sitnica and Taras, Vaitsiushkevich and Luchanok, Krautsevich and Zakonnikau, Anisim and Stuzhynskaya, and many more famous people.

If someone from the opposition does not want to go to a meeting on the celebration of the anniversary with our initiative, so why not make other suggestions?

We are ready to go to some other place at a different time, but no one appointed any. It’s a big event, full of organizational concerns, so we called to come immediately. And to my understanding, only those who are in the league with the haters of the Belarusianity, who want the history of the independent Belarus to be over, can interfere with this, trying to mar one of the most brilliant pages of the Belarusian history by clarifying the relationships within the opposition, or between the opposition and the government.

I beg you to calm down, not to raise the dust, to show political and civil liability. Not before those who influence, who (or what) someone will serve, but before the people whom we will have to look in the eyes.

Uladzimir Niakliaeu