Alfred Sant and Miriam Dalli are leading the charge to limit the undoubted damage expected from Tuesday’s European Parliament debate in Strasbourg. The European Parliament is expected to find what we’ve known for years and Labour kept denying: that rule of law in Malta is ignored by its government and democracy is failing.
You can see that they have no hope of persuading the European Parliament to come to a different conclusion. They can no longer convince anyone outside their hardened and galvanized herd of loyal supporters that what is happening in this blessed country is nothing short of an institutional abandonment of core European values.
They have given up on dissuading anyone unmotivated by either inveterate political fandom or by a share from the proceeds of the sleaze and corruption of the present administration that Joseph Muscat is anything less than a leader of a wild bunch of crooks who has taken over a member states of the European Union and transferred the entire public space of that state to private interests: prominently the interests of the Aliyev family of Azerbaijan and their various cronies and by extension those in Malta in their pay.
So now that they have embarrassed the country in the eyes of the world running around with their grimy faces and bloody aprons presenting Malta as a cowboy state and rendering it a pirate bay for crooks and criminals, they are blaming the Nationalist Party for what has happened.
They blame the Nationalist Party, that in its current state couldn’t mobilise the proverbial piss-up in a brewery, for supposedly having mobilised the interest of the entire European Parliament and forced otherwise innocent bystanders to criticise the Maltese government just to spite Labour.
Readers of this blog are likely to know all the facts I’m listing here but you never know who might accidentally stumble on them:
- The PN is a member of the EPP. The EPP has 214 seats in a parliament of 750. That means that 71% of the chamber consider the PN as belonging to a rival political family. At least that 71% does not take at face value what David Casa, Roberta Metsola or Francis Zammit Dimech say.
- If the European Parliament is to approve a damning resolution on Malta this week, the favourable vote supporting it will need to cover at least half of MPs and therefore reaching MEPs of persuasion altogether out of the reach of the PN. The expectation will be that considerably more than half of MEPs will support a resolution admonishing Joseph Muscat’s government for walking away from democracy.
- The European Parliament is not relying on any Maltese source for its information. The final report of the PANA committee last week is authored by MEPs from across the political spectrum including Socialists. They are of the unanimous view that the Maltese government is mired in sleaze and corruption and protected by impunity from the other institutions that are expected to keep it in check. They are in unmitigated dismay that a Panama-leaks named Minister is still in office. They demand that the licensing of Pilatus Bank is investigated. They demand that Nexia BT, the firm of Joseph Muscat’s personal accountant, is investigated for probable breach of money-laundering laws.
- The European Parliament’s interest was particularly pricked by the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia. No one needed prompting from Malta. On the contrary when everyone here was still in a daze journalists from the United States to Japan (and that’s just the ones I know about) were on flights here to find out what was going on. Unlike Malta’s Labour there isn’t a single politician in the European Parliament that would expect to survive a day after celebrating the death of a journalist.
- The reputational harm to the country did not occur because of the answers given to the world-wide press in reply to their mystified questioning. Nor even did it happen because Daphne Caruana Galizia died. It happened because the answers to the questions asked when she died told a story that started in 2013 when Labour came to power and privatised the country over to criminals and dictators.
- Miriam Dalli’s tu quoque plea that the PN should have admonished Hungary in the European Parliament for also walking away from democracy is a complete irrelevance. The fact that the PN is too deep in with the EPP to admonish one of its members changes nothing. Joseph Muscat deserves grave cautioning from Europe’s legislative assembly and he is going to get it. The PN (and Labour) cannot do anything about that either way.
- This is Alfred Sant speaking earlier today: “A strong faction within the PN that is afraid of losing power, irrespective of whoever may be in government, is trying to avoid this at all costs”. What madness is this? How is anyone in the PN worried about losing power having lost it already in 2013 and again earlier this year?
- The notion that criticising Joseph Muscat and his gang of crooks being equated with “attacking Malta” is fascist, anti-democratic and frankly an unwitting admission that in this country an autocratic regime has taken over.
Joseph Muscat is not even bothering to limit damage on Malta’s reputation in the rest of the world. At this point Joseph Muscat doesn’t give a flying about Malta’s reputation. He was never too bothered to begin with. He must have weighed those risks when he confirmed Konrad Mizzi and Keith Schembri in their positions having been caught setting up secret accounts in Panama. And then again when the FIAU found evidence of money transferred into 17 Black in Dubai and then Konrad Mizzi’s account. And then again when the FIAU’s findings were suppressed. And then again when he appointed John Dalli as his personal adviser after Jose’ Manuel Barroso fired him from the European Commission for bringing into disrepute. And then again when he retained Keith Schembri even after receiving kick-backs in his Pilatus Bank account from Brian Tonna. And then when the police held back for some 16 hours before going to Pilatus Bank to allow evidence to be flown on a private flight to Baku the day an whistle-blower stepped up to say Michelle Muscat received payments from Ilham Aliyev’s daughter. And then when a pointless 1 million euro sponsorship was given to the private jet airline that flew the evidence out.
All this and more slime and mud was an attack on Malta and Joseph Muscat perpetrated it.
And now it’s the PN’s fault, according to apologists for Joseph Muscat, like Alfred Sant who thinks Malta’s reputation could be improved if masses of Labour supporters go out into the street in some frenzied orgy of anger at those protesting against corruption in this country.
Because it is in Malta that they want to limit the damage. That is the only audience they are really interested in. For as long as their formidable majority of fans remains in hysterical support of them, the country is theirs to hustle no matter what the European Parliament says.
Joseph Muscat it is you who are attacking Malta. At this point by just being there. By mobilising your cronies to defend you and cover your crimes. By pretending nothing untoward is going on even as the European Parliament you were part of now calls you out for trashing the core values it stands for, as we hoped should we.
Malta has been here far longer than either Joseph Muscat, or Alfred Sant, or even the PN and will be there long after this darkest chapter in our contemporary history is over. Malta has been attacked by far worse and lived on to be a home for generations of our forefathers who make us proud. We in turn will embarrass our descendants. And that is on Joseph Muscat and his gang.
And on Alfred Sant and Myriam Dalli who appear so enthusiastic to join it.