This article has been written for Albanian Free Press newspaper and www.albanianfreepress.al
By Frrok Çupi
Everyone is wondering: who mentioned the tragedy of “Tepelena” which was lying dormant since 1950?
It was a mere “coincidence”. The son of a senior official of the former Secret Service, married to the niece of dictator Hoxha,“dug his own grave”for being excessively courageous. The communist militant historian, Pellumb Xhufi declared during a TV program that “the deportation camp in Tepelena was a good camp, because it was a place where the families of the people’s enemies suffered”. This brought to the surface a terrible crime of the communist regime.
This leads us to believe that “Tepelena” will happen again.
“Tepelena” will happen again, because it was forgotten…
Communist historiography had intentionally kept this terrible event hidden. The sons and daughters of the camp’s victims had learned very little about the camp, while their descendants knew nothing. The ruins of this camp are located in the road linking Tepelena to Gjirokastra and nobody knew this. The communist dictators were smarter than their descendants. As soon as their descendants felt “powerful”, they came out and announced the crime carried out in Tepelena. This was what historian Xhufi did. After the 2017 elections, they are more and more convinced that the dictatorship regime has come back. They measure this by the number of the sons of the members of the communist nomenclature who have been appointed in key positions. They also measure this with the return of symbols and the humiliation of the anti-communist opposition. (Today, a minister, who is the son of a Politburo member, dared to throw a bottle to a member of the ‘anti communist’ opposition in Parliament)… This is where we have come to: Thanks to the persecutors and their sons, Tepelena’s deportation camp has surfaced once again. Those who admire it, will defend it by any cost, those who have suffered, will discover it.
“Tepelena” will happen without even realizing it…
The majority of people do not understand what has happened in the camp of Tepelena. This means that the majority of people do not know what has happened during the dictatorship regime. In a way, even those who have lived through that hell, feel ashamed in front of their descendants and are unable to tell them how they were humiliated. Two categories of people are in front of each other now: Fortunately, we have several people who managed to survive to the camp and the other category includes that generation which has embraced the age of internet.
One of the survivors, a 94 year old mother from Miredita, confessed how her little girl died asking for water. A neighbor had given her a cup of water, but it was not enough. A mother from Lekbibaj revealed how she had slept for three months with the exhumed corpse of her child, because all she wanted after the child’s death was for the grave not to be lost.
Meanwhile, the communist historian belongs to another category. He claims that this was “the best camp”. But, the second category includes members of the cyber generation and historical “ignorant”.
Why do the sons of dictators have so little intelligence?
The image of dictatorship and the communist dictator have almost been “restored”. On the day when Enver Hoxha’s death was commemorated (11 April), I have heard many praises “for that man”. Of course, the majority of these praises come from the communist “bloc”. Nobody dared to do this for 30 years, but now, on the 33rd year, all the descendants find the courage to do it. History of political regimes has shown that the descendants are more brutal and less intelligent than the dictators. This is why the Khmer Rouge or the Nazis did not leave power to their descendants. This was done since ancient times.
However, the ones that we have today awoke the “Nazi” temple of Tepelena. Dictator Hoxha had concealed it. He had even concealed the symbolic number of the victims in Tepelena. The dictator also concealed the number of the martyrs who fell for the fatherland. He concealed the bomb in the Russian embassy on 19 February 1951, which coincided with the Red Army Day. But, his descendants are lacking intelligence and they have come to reawaken “Tepelena”, which may be regarded as the Albanian holocaust.
Note: The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Albanian Free Press’ editorial policy