Final Word from Monday, March 23, 2015

Václav Klaus walked into a trap of his own making when he told ČT24 that it is absolutely clear that Bohuslav Sobotka and Andrej Babiš love and need each other but must play a charade for the public. Václav Moravec and others were able to riposte that Klaus should know, since this was the foundation for his "opposition agreement" with Miloš Zeman. Part of the game in the 1990s was for Zeman to blame Klaus's finance minister, Ivan Kočárník, for helping PPF to "tunnel" banks and to take over Česká pojišťovna. Babiš is using the same tactic now by dusting off the privatization of OKD whenever he needs to beat down Sobotka or draw attention away from his own problems, such as Skanska and Kapsch. OKD was one of the biggest "tunnels" in the country, Babiš said last week. Yet in terms of actually doing anything to bring Sobotka or Zdeněk Bakala to justice, Babiš is about as active as Zeman was as PM in reining in Petr Kellner. [Czech Republic songbook Interview RPG tolls]

Glossary of difficult words

to sing from the same hymnbook - to read from the same page, to share the same understanding of something;

charade - an absurd pretense intended to create a pleasant or respectable appearance;

to riposte - to make a quick clever reply to an insult or criticism;

to dust something off - to bring something out for use again after a long period of neglect;

to rein in - to bring under control.

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