Lithuanian celebrities speak out on 2001

  • 2000-12-21
  • Rokas M. Tracevskis
VILNIUS - Lithuanian superstars of the Church, politics, astrology and history gave The Baltic Times their prognosis for Lithuania in 2001. All of them are quite optimistic about their country's development next year.

Jonas Boruta, secretary general of the Lithuanian Roman Catholic Bishops' Conference, is one of the most outspoken high-ranking officials of the Church and often participates in various TV programs.

"It will be some progress. A man should not rely only on God. God needs initiative from a man. Such co-operation is necessary for further reforms in Lithuania next year," Boruta said about 2001.

Ceslovas Jursenas is chairman of the Democratic Labor Party. He was the chairman of Parliament from 1993 to 1996. Now Jursenas is one of the leaders of the Leftist opposition. He is famous for his hobby too: collecting cartoons about himself.

"The situation of the Lithuanian economy will be a little bit better despite the rule of a new right-wing government. Lithuanian international positions also will be stronger," Jursenas said.

Kazys Bobelis is deputy chairman of the parliamentary foreign affairs committee. He was chairman of the American-based Chief Committee for Liberation of Lithuania during Soviet occupation. Bobelis established the Christian Democratic Union upon return to his homeland. This party is tiny, but Bobelis himself is always among the top 10 most popular Lithuanian politicians, according to social surveys. Bobelis is also known as the author of the alcoholic drink recipe Bobeline, which is produced by one of Lithuanian firms.

"Our economy will rise. New government is created from people who care about citizens, not about their own personal matters as it was before. I believe that crime will be crushed. The unemployment rate will go down. Compromise decisions will be found in pensioners' issues. All controversies over privatization, like with the oil industry and telecoms, will be solved. It is necessary to punish all corrupt officials - not just let them go from one office to another as it was before. I believe that we'll integrate further into the international structures of Western democracies," Bobelis said.

Naglis Sulija is one of the most famous Lithuanian astrologers and meteorologists. He publishes his prognosis in both fields in the Lietuvos Rytas daily.

"The major political crisis might be in the end of spring or the beginning of summer next year. As usual it will be due to the state's debt and the social problems coming out of it. Questions for government will appear in the sphere of social care: what we can afford and what we can not? If the government will pass this period successfully, some crisis of the same character can happen again in the fall. I do not predict a break out of the coalition of Liberal Union of Rolandas Paksas and the Social Liberals of Arturas Paulauskas. At least I don't see a contradiction of characters between Paksas, who is Gemini, and Paulauskas, who is Leo. These two signs are not antagonists. Success in foreign affairs will come for Lithuania in 2002 - 2003. Lithuania can expect a positive decision on its NATO membership in 2002," Sulija said.

Daiva Luchtaniene is one of the most famous Lithuanian archaeologists. She excavates the first Lithuanian capital-city of Kernave and Vilnius Old Town. Luchtaniene also is among the organizers of the popular festival "Living Archaeology Days". Archaeologists dressed in pre-historic clothes invite visitors to share in the lives of ancient man in the pre-historic style village in Kernave during the festival.

"I'm optimistic. It is time for our economy to improve. I think that the government will not do just nothing as it was during this year," Luchtaniene said.