Dimitar Peshev

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Dario Rivolta
Member of the Italian Parliament
at the solemn celebration of Dimitar Peshev
Sofia, November 6th 1998

Distinguished president, dear colleagues, distinguished cabinet ministers, dear guests!

Not many years ago in Italy a journalist posed a question to a very important politician from one of the Italian political parties. The question was whether such politician felt compelled to choose between truth and revolution. And if that choice became inevitable, what would he opt for - the truth or the revolution? The answer in that case was: I have no doubt I would rather choose the revolution. In other words, this was the same cliché we have been hearing so very often, particularly in politics. That is the truism that the aim justifics the means. This has become a truly commonplace expression now, we hardly pay any attention to it anymore and do not even sense its paradoxical essence, the profound immorality of such a statement.

One of the greatest risks in politics is that regardless of the age, or of the time, or of manner one decides to enter politics, one usually does this for reasons within the field of ethics and morality, for social reasons, in pursuit of certain goals symbolising certain values, the values shared by one. However, the real risk of being involved in political activities is that while developing and getting accustomed to the rules of politics, one forgets one's values and keeps remembering one's goal alone - to win, to win a victory that is. Or, to put it otherwise, the greatest risk, the gravest danger in politics, in my opinion, stems from the fact, that while someone is making his way ahead, while originally fighting to win, to realise and to assert his values, he may be, in result, left with the one and only aspiration to win his victories alone. And then one normally misses the values he originally fostered.

This is an example and a conclusion which I myself have tried to draw, and I believe many of you would also draw, from the events relating to the personality of Dimitar Peshev and to the 43 other deputies who succeeded in countering, in opposing danger. This was someone involved in highest-level politics and yet he never turned his back upon the values he cherished. This is a man, who managed at the right time to provide the evidence, that although sometimes the aim does justify the means, this is not always and absolutely true, because we need also to observe the fundamental rights of human nature as well as the goals of co-existence. And this is where real politics has its genuine roots.

Europe, all of Europe has a lesson to learn from this shining example. And I am aware of what I am saying and I assure you that this is not an overstatement. This is how I would like to pay my very deep respect for you, because this was a really heroic act indeed. There have been many other acts of bravery and courage, but in that historic moment the only other such example came from Denmark. This circumstance corroborates the fact that values do exist in politics, that there is the possibility in politics for anyone to hold on to his human nature and get up courage, regardless of the goals. And therefore I, as an Italian and an European, wish to thank you, the Bulgarians, our fellow Europeans, for this example, for the fact that a compatriot of yours has given this glaring example to all of us!

Other speeches at the celebration:
• Yordan Sokolov (introduction)
• Ivan Kurtev
• Alexander Bozhkov (reading a message from Ivan Kostov)
• Ivan Kurtev (reading letters from Colombo and Yasharov)
• Gabriele Nissim
• Yossif Kioso
• Dario Rivolta
• Pierluigi Petrini
• Dan Tikhon
• Yordan Sokolov (conclusion)

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