Russia – the Apple of Discord in Georgia


The scandalous heat and friction between the current Georgian government and its opposition has become a non-stop and strenuous series of verbal and physical altercations all over the place, especially on the floor of the Republic’s legislative body as well as in front of its headquarters. One of the milestones of the notorious top-level squabble happens to be the long-crippled Russian-Georgian relations. Here, I am drawing on the statement by the vice-speaker of Georgia’s parliament Giorgi Volski on USA, NATO and the EU being the alternative to the perils emanating from Russia.

The governmental position since the change of regime in Georgia in 2012 has been extremely cautious towards the Russian government, surreptitiously pursuing the goal of keeping the ‘Evil Empire’ away from any sudden moves against vulnerable little Georgia. The Georgian leadership is well aware that the Russian government will never give up on its country’s strategic interests in the Caucasus Region for the Georgian people’s geopolitical comfort, so it would make no sense to pursue a futile power-game with Russia, but this does not mean that Georgia is going on its knees before the Russian power. The Georgian doctrinal stance is: It is worth remembering that Russia is a strong nuclear power with a centuries-old imperial mentality and behavior, and for Georgia to stay secure and free as an independent country, it is preferable to refrain from old-style non-speaking terms with Russia and keep up the dialogue with the occupant at least in fields like trade, culture, religion and tourism.

The ruling party also believes that Georgia truly belongs in Europe and has never deviated from the idea of Georgia’s involvement in the Euro-Atlantic cooperation of nations, thus emphasizing that staying in this unavoidable trivial touch with Russia, it has never betrayed the western ideals. Indeed, the Georgian government has successfully managed to avoid a new war with the angry vindictive neighbor and has kept up the intensified process of integration with the West. On the other hand, the radical opposition is of totally contrary opinion of the existing Russian-Georgian interaction, if this induced exchange of minor importance could be described as an ‘interaction’ at all. The Russian-Georgian sporadic exchange is in fact a harsh geopolitical struggle, evolving in front of the entire world and seen as a desperate resistance of the forcefully downsized Georgia to the happily growing Russia. The opposition believes that the fight has to be escalated with the help of the supportive part of the international community, in expectation of a pleasing finale for Georgia at the end of this unequal fight. Meanwhile, Russia, having become a real apple of discord between our government and its current opposition, is gleefully celebrating the success of its soft power promoters in Georgia. Russia probably knows well what she is doing on our remaining territory, in the first place never forgetting the well-tried golden rule of divide and conquer – the classic that Russia has been using in each and every post-soviet country with the purpose of keeping the former empire intact.

Will we allow the crafty, cruel enemy of Georgia’s Western development to interject with its rich anti-western imagination and poor pro-socialist economy to see Georgia back in the vicious soviet caboodle? We may succumb if the government and opposition do not push themselves to become better equipped analytically and more instrumental technically for coping with the advent of Russian multidirectional assault, together. Incriminating each other, especially in the ruthless and despicable oppositional style, is not enough. Action, before it’s too late!

If Russia is a recognized adversary, then she must be expected to behave like a foe which has its own ways and means, among them bellicose ones too, of hurting the enemy, the enemy being us. Georgia should also possess its own ways and means, only peaceful and useful, of resistance, because we cannot and must not go to war with anybody, especially with Russia.

And it is exactly here where my bones tell me that this government of Georgia has found the golden median in the heavily mined field of interaction with Russia which it is prepared to faithfully follow its principles to the very end, not yielding to some of our loudmouthed politicians who dream of our defeat in the current Russian-Georgian interface.

By Nugzar B. Ruhadze

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27 June 2019 18:08