IBNA Special Report
Tirana, November 25, 2014/Independent Balkan News Agency
In Albania, the trumpeting displayed in the opening of the five storey bunker belonging to the dictatorship period for the public, is being followed by strong suspicions that the objects being exhibited there have never been there and that it’s not anti-nuclear.
Former PM, Sali Berisha, who governed the country for eight years, says that the information available is true and that nobody can deny them.
“This museum is situated in a command facility for times of war and it’s not an anti-nuclear bunker”, says Berisha, rejecting the reiterated declarations made by the PM that the giant bunker was anti-nuclear, a declaration which was also reflected on international media.
“Rama had carefully selected photographs of the barbarian dictator in different ages, the bedrooms, conference rooms, cinema, etc, which have all been installed now”, says Mr. Berisha, by stressing: “That bunker, in contrast to the lies that Edi Rama told to the Albanian people, has never existed up until a year ago. There had been no photos, no objects, no beds, blankets, tables, maps or other objects of that time”.
Berisha suggests that all of these objects have been offered by Mrs. Nexhmije Hoxha, the widow of Enver Hoxha, the family and its archives and they have been taken to the bunker by making the public believe that they have been there since the construction of the five storey facility underground.
So far, Berisha’s accusations have not been rejected by PM Rama.
Meanwhile, the former PM criticizes the 1 million Euro expense, like he claims, that has been done in order to open this facility and offers another criticism for his successor: “In the museum of his spiritual father, Edi Rama has not shown the executions carried out without trial, camps, the terrible prisons of the dictatorship, the medieval means of inhuman tortures, deaths from starvation and illnesses in the collectivist system or isolation and biggest misery in the history of Albanians. Rama’s ‘art museum’ on Enver Hoxha, could never had these”.
Inauguration for the public
In the framework of the celebrations of the 70 anniversary of liberation, the government opened “Bunk’Art”. This is an underground five storey building, built in 1974 by the communist government, as an emergency facility in possible cases of war or attacks from abroad. The facility is located in the suburb of Tirana and it has 106 rooms, a hall for parliamentary sessions, a canteen, a coffee-bar and a special security space. It was inaugurated four years later, in 1978. The authorities suggest that the bunker is anti-nuclear.
The bunker is located near the Support Battalion of the General Staff. With five armored doors, the building named in the years of the communist regime as “Facility 0774”. In many of these premises, guns, uniforms, documents, different maps and other details which served at that time, have been exhibited. As of this week, the facility will remain open every day for the public until the end of December.
Rama: Mysteries can no longer be preserved
PM Edi Rama is surprised about the fact that this small country “managed to build an anti-nuclear facility in the heart of the mountain, to defend from the neighbors and world powers”.
Meanwhile, he raises a question: “How is it possible for this facility to be preserved in such secrecy from the public, not only by those who believed that one day they would gather here to fight the entire world and resist against those super powers, but also from those that lied to themselves and the people that along with the old regime, its mentality went too”. Rama answers to this question: “The preservation of this mystery and these mysteries and also the preservation of the mystery of the files of the past, those of the Secret Services, which hide many bitter truths, are in fact the continuation of the same school, of the old political school of ruling over one another, in spite of the cost of the lying propaganda that the others have to hear every day”.
“Kill two birds with one stone”
From the hall where parliament of Albania was to hold its meetings in case of nuclear attacks, PM Edi Rama says that after the opening of this bunker for the public, “every grave of the past” will also be opened, stressing the opening of the classified files of the former Secret Services. Rama says that the opening of the bunker will turn the area into a tourist attraction. “These premises are a heritage that reflects a culture that was lived and which will attract many tourists”. This way, Rama kills two birds with one stone. He develops historical tourism, but he also causes turbulences in the political atmosphere with the opening of the files.
“An open grave belonging to a past time to remind us that we have not managed to bury the temptation of holding the future hostage through the past. This is the reason why we will open the graves of the past, in the form of tunnels and classified files in order to understand where their parents, grandfathers come from and what their past was like”, says Rama.
According to the head of the government, by looking into the past, people are free to look into the future. Rama assures that the majority will not review history, because even when this was attempted, he says, it has failed due to the political interventions.
A visit to learn about the Albania of those years
A visit in this underground facility can explain to the Albanian people not only about the dictatorship regime and Enver Hoxha, but also about many negative things that the half a century regime did in the country.
In the days to come, the public will be expected to see the opening of other mysterious facilities which were controlled by the dictatorship. The opening of facilities and the opening of the state and society toward this history, by offering the people the possibility to look into history, to closely look into those state secrets, may be a good way to inform people who do not have political affiliations, over what Albania has gone through up until two decades ago. /ibna/
In the photos: Images from the interior of the bunker facility