Final Word from Friday, October 3, 2003

Czech elections or important votes in Parliament are often accompanied by spy scandals. This time around, information leaked from the BIS intelligence agency says that President Václav Klaus hangs out with Alexandr Rebjonok, a Russian who might have ties to the Russian secret police or mafia, and who might also have helped finance the theft of TV Nova four years ago. (Nova said it would sue Respekt newspaper for reporting this.) The other recent scandal involves the alleged tailing by BIS of MP Josef Hojdar of ČSSD. Leading members of ČSSD are spreading the rumor that Premier Vladimír Špidla is using the BIS secret police to achieve his political goals. This could explain his recent string of stunning successes. Analyst Martin Švehla said that if it's true, the whole thing could suddenly blow up on Špidla and put a quick end to his political career. service


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