Centi-countdown at the Szécsényi Square every day at 3 o’clock – 21 days left until the Referendum Vote!
Starting February 1, at 3 o’clock, and continuing every afternoon from then on, a citizen of Pécs, or a person with a close relationship to Pécs, well-known and well-respected individuals will cut a piece from the giant measuring tape (centimeter tape), and will announce why she feels it is important to take part in the referendum, and vote YES for a radar-free Pécs.
(NOTE: Statements may have been slightly altered in translation for language usage reasons, and therefore the English version should not be considered a direct quote from the individual.)
The 19th „centi” was cut by László Csizmadia, graphic artist and defender of the Zengő:
„There is a big problem! In the world, in our country, and here in Pécs, but most of all in the souls of human beings. Because a war is raging, an unforgiving war, between those committed to values and those committed to their own interests. And let’s not sugar-coat it, the values, at this time, are losing…If we want to resist the dark forces, we will need civil bravery, unity, and self-organization. We succeeded in this at the Zengő, and this is our task at the Tubes as well. I wish my good friends in Pécs, who are defending their values, much success and further courageous resistance in this difficult and trying work… To those who point back to the Zengő with the shallow, short-sighted hope of political gain, I advise them, in this time of such social tension no one should play irresponsibly with such a „tinderbox”, because as we have until now, even at the cost of our lives, we will defend our mountain! You do the same, my dear friends from Pécs!”
The 20th „centi” was cut by László Körtvélyesi, photographer:
„As you can see I’m a green person, I always wear green clothes, and my thinking is green as well. In spite of this, I don’t belong to those greens who protest everywhere against everything, say, while wearing non-biodegradable raincoats…I’m not afraid that if the radar is built, then the city will become some kind of military target, and in this way my environment will and I will as well. It seems to follow that if I’m not afraid and many others also are not afraid then why in hell do we need a radar? I am sure, that if they build a cement structure above the city using the most modern technology, in two years it will become morally and technically obsolete, and the same task could be performed by something one-quarter the size. We have loads and loads of similarly gigantic and totally useless structures in the city. If we look a bit to the west of the TV tower, then a new structure, a new scar on the landscape will appear in view. I’m for preventing a new scar on the landscape from rising above our heads.”
The 21st „centi” was cut by Mrs. Mihály Hormay Edina Sziebert, she and her family live closest to the planned radar location. She was also the founding co-president of the Association for the Community of Istenkút (IKE- Istenkúti Közösségért Egyesület) which has initiated this referendum.
„I wouldn’t like for my two sons and three daughters to grow up in the shadow of the radar. I don’t desire such a future for them. That is why I am going to vote, and that is why I am going to vote YES.”
Today’s „centi-countdown” event has another apropo as well, to introduce the poster by well known graphic artist Péter Poócs, a native of Pécs.
The 22nd „centi” was cut by Attila Pásztor, psychologist:
„Do no harm! A psychologist begins his career with this sentence. Every healing person, every healing profession works according to this eternal truth. To make things better for others, to offer recovery. Unfortunately this is only the basic statement of faith for the healing professions, otherwise we wouldn’t hear of such „”acceptable compromise”” that holds a negative, destructive, and repressive meaning for those working for a radar-free Pécs. Do no harm! In every person working in any field, if they cannot advance the cause, then at least they should do no harm. They should not do harm to democracy, and should not do harm to the progress upon which the future of Pécs is being built.”
The 23rd „centi” was cut by Éva Szojkovics, professional basketball player:
„I believe that we can agree that our city of Pécs is a beautiful city, with the Mecsek in the background. Anyone, anytime, can go up to do some training or just take a stroll. I can’t think of more beautiful surroundings. Flowers blooming, birds chirping, the landscape is absolutely calm, and as we return to town we find ourselves in the beauty of our historical city. We don’t want this to be ruined by this radar – this 50 meter cement mass. In addition, the radar would prevent people from even going up to the area even to take a stoll. We don’t wan’t to live in fear here in Pécs, in our peaceful little city. We are wary of the effects on our health, and we don’t want to become military targets, which I think is totally unnecessary, and quite possible in this political environment which has developed around the globe. We would like for people to think this over. Think it over, and go to vote on March 4th, and vote YES for a radar-free Pécs.”
The 24th „centi” was cut by Örs Harnóczy, photographer:
„I’m growing to microphone… I also oppose the building of a radar-station on the Tubes. Why? I’d like to emphasize the security aspects. If they happen to build this radar, then they decide they have to protect it, and they build a barrier around it. Then they decide that the tourists and hikers are a danger to this barrier, so they build another barrier. And if that’s not enough, because the people are moving suspiciously around the edge of the city, they put a barrier around the city itself. After a time, it won’t be possible to move freely inside or outside of the city. This will be our future with the radar, so I oppose the building of the radar. I don’t understand, when those representatives who entered parliament and the local city council with our votes, and should represent the interests of the people, instead do the exact opposite. They act only according to their own economic and political interests, which is unacceptable. I believe that when the Tubes issue is over, and if it doesn’t end the way we wish, we will begin to recall these representatives. On the referendum you bet I’m voting YES.”
The 25The 23th „centi” was cut by József Szabados, captain of the PMFC (Pécs football club):
„I’d like to begin with a quote. „”We have not inherited the Earth from our fathers, but we have received it on loan from our grandchildren.”” The primary goal is the protection of our children and our health, as well as of nature, the trees, the plants and animals, and finally the protection of the city of Pécs, it’s beauty, and that of the Tubes. This radar station does not fit within the identity of Pécs.”
The 26th „centi” was cut by András Lovasi singer-guitarist-bass guitarist (of the bands „Kispál és a Borz” and „Kiscsillag”):
„I don’t think this referendum will be a fight for yes and no, but the fight for those who might stay home. I don’t believe that a sane citizen of Pécs could vote no on this question.
My reason for taking part in this action is to spread the word to as many people as possible, through the much-respected members of the press as well, that there will be a referendum on March 4th. The strange thing is that it would even occur to the politicians of Pécs to support this idea. When the Láng-committee, called together by the Prime Minister, was one of the first to declare that becasue of the proximity of Pécs, and the expected environmental damage, neither the Tubes nor the Jakab Mountain are acceptable locations for a radar station. These two locations were immediately removed from the list of possibilities. We hope we will win.”
The 27th „centi” was cut by András Nagy Bandó, comedian.
He wrote this entry in our guestbook:
„So as I have said before: If they don’t put it up, it doesn’t need to be taken down… it would be so good to finally take down everything which represents violence and war-making, and destruction and death, and the loss of human life.
This is the theme of today’s „centi countdown”! Neither radar, nor revision!”
The 28th „centi” was cut by Gábor Hámori, photographer and teacher:
„During the time of the Warsaw Pact, over 100 radar stations provided for the security of our airspace. In place of these the Ministry of Defense wants to establish 3 stations, one of them on the Zengő, or for now the Tubes, or who knows where. I think that even 6 is fewer than 146. This question should be solved with the least possible harm to the environment, in the least aesthetically disturbing way, and in a way that upsets as few people as possible. The Tubes is an inappropriate location from all these points of view, that is why it is important that as many of us as possible are there for the referendum, and place our votes of „YES” for a radar-free Pécs.”
The 29th „centi” was cut by Alex Solyom, medical student:
„I attend medical university in Pécs, and this is where I live. Regarding the planned radar station, I think that this is first and foremost a question affecting our quality of life. The quality of life of the people of Pécs, who would have to live under this structure for at least 20 years. In the impact study commissioned by the Ministry of Defense, there is no mention of how this microwave, non-ionizing radiation will affect the people living here over a 20 year period. In this way we become the subjects of a kind of living experiment, which is unacceptable. With this referendum effort, we have the opportunity to directly decide a question which will affect all of our lives. We don’t have to entrust this decision to anyone else. With the little time it takes to go and vote, we can decide this issue. All it takes is that we all stand up and go to vote on March 4th.”
The 30th „centi” was cut by Zsigmond György Hajda , woodworker and restorator:
„It is beyond my understanding how, in a cultural capital as Pécs will be for awhile, they can want to build a radar station. It’s a nightmare. I have this message for the citizens of Pécs: Decide wisely, and seek that information on the basis of which you can say that there is no need for this military radar. I feel that people should not be ashamed if they think differently than the way they are expected to.”
The 31st „centi” was cut by Gábor Pilári, puppeteer:
„Why is it important to us that there be no radar? It’s important because of our environment, because of our children, because if we look out from our gardens, or the resident of a housing project goes up to the Mecsek, THEY SHOULDN’T MEET A SCOOP OF ICE CREAM. Those who want to build it think it’s a harmless beast, I happen to feel that it’s not. Let it be then that all of us choose that our city, a historical city, should not be topped by something so ugly. We thank everyone who votes YES, so that there will be no radar station in our city.”
The 32nd „centi” was cut by Péter Peták, to start the centi-countdown. He is the co-president of the Istenkúti Közösségért Egyesület (IKE) (Association for the Community of Istenkút), which initiated the successful petition for the coming referendum.
„The mayor and vice-mayors, as well as the city’s members of parliament have received invitations to participate in this event. We therefore hope that there will be an occasion when they stand here at the corner of the Széchenyi Square with scissors in their hands. The citizens of Pécs will have the opportunity to observe events similar to this in this place, until the 4th of March.”