Review of the Georgian media: Saakashvili's supporters are afraid of the investigation of the causes of the 2008 war and catastrophically lost their political influence

Tue, 30/04/2013 - 14:25

The "brooms revolution" in Georgia, which resulted in a vast majority of parliamentary seats won by earlier oppositional "Georgian Dream" of the current Prime Minister of Georgia Bidzina Ivanishvili, brought about changes in the activity of the Georgian media. One can observe, which of them has been still exercising loyalty to President Mikhail Saakashvili, and who has already changed his policy and is supporting the new government.
News agency "Georgia Online," has not changed its editorial policy in favor of political trends, trying on an unaccustomed role of opposing to the new Georgian regime. It has been consistently criticizing the policy pursued by the Ivanishvili`s team, as one can see from the headlines. One of them (April 28, 2013) reads: "Ivanishvili assessed the election as "normal" and has again "bitten" the "United National Movement". Here, the Chairman of the Georgian government is compared to a dog ... (which bites).

It should be noted that though the elections were held in Georgia for over six months ago, no any consolidation has happened. And one should not draw a parallel between the elections in South Ossetia, where, despite the drama tenseness and political temperature, none of the candidates or their supporters allowed themselves any offensive comparisons of their opponents with dogs and other animals. Apparently, it also shows the difference between the level of political culture of South Ossetia and Georgia. What does the word "bite" mean in the article? Nothing special, just the premier has expressed the assumption that the interim parliamentary elections held in Georgia, will be unsuccessful for Saakashvili's party. "In my opinion, a representative of the
"National Movement" will not receive even ten percent of votes", - said Ivanishvili.
In the Georgian media has been simmering controversy over the new government`s initiative on the investigation of the causes of the full-scale military aggression of Georgia against South Ossetia and Russia in August 2008, which in Georgia is called just a "war."
April 12, 2013 IA "Georgia Onliine" published a critical essay of its regular contributor Tengiz Ablotiya, who writes: "..." the dreamers" pursue a purely domestic political purpose - to discredit the National Movement, to show them as a bunch of irrational psychopaths ready to start the disastrous war with Russia" .
In his view, "the problem is that the Commission, which will be established by the "dreamers," will have even less to do with fairness and honesty. And it`s goal is not to actually investigate what happened in August 2008.
The goal is- to throw the blame for everything on the "nationals," to legitimize what they have been talking about over the last 5 years. I am more than sure that this commission will completely dismiss all the arguments in favor of the former government. Moreover, they will just slant all the facts in favour of the desired version. And finally, it would have even less in common with reality. Of course, I do not expect that the Commission will make a hostile attack directly against its own state and will accuse Saakashvili's government of unleashing the war. Most likely, everything will be furnished so that Saakashvili will be displayed a bastard, but at the same time Russia will not be represented as an angel. The painting will be roughly as follows: Russia tried to provoke Georgia, preparing for the war for a long time, and eventually has provoked. "
Tengiz Ablotiya has stated: "Commissions are not set up in order to say "sorry, we were wrong, in fact, it was a tactical mistake ..." So personally I am totally against the party investigation, the purpose of which is to legitimize the fact that the other day said our Prime Minister about the war. There is one more point. Many people say we have to admit our mistakes to regain the confidence of the Russian, Abkhaz and Ossetians. And this is a gigantic folly! "
He has concluded: "We should admit our mistakes to be at least of some benefit in consideration of one indispensable condition - Moscow, Tskhinval and Sukhum have to find their own Paata Zakareishvili. As nothing like this is taking place there, the session of sadomasochism will come to nothing."
Continuing the theme, April 22, "Georgia Online" published a lengthy interview of a journalist Leila Naroushvili with the co-founder of the Association of Reforms in Georgia (GRASS), former Deputy State Minister of Georgia on European and Euro-Atlantic integration Elena Khoshtaria: "Irresponsible attitude to national security will lead to anti-state consequences."
The interview leads to the conclusion that "because of the political struggle one cannot touch upon the issues, which will be harmful to the country. First of all, Saakashvili, who, according to them, is guilty of unleashing the war, is considered separately from the state. This indicates a lack of knowledge of the elementary basics of the state law: a person, an individual cannot unleash war or conduct warfare against another state. Obviously, for them it is a version that it is not Georgia, but Saakashvili is bad, but it`s impossible- president represents the state. Secondly, it is very dangerous when this whole narrative fits perfectly into that discourse, which is voiced by the Russian side for many years, and no one has accepted this version. The essence of the Russian narrative is that they intervened only to protect Ossetians from the aggressor, ie, the Georgian side. "
Elena Khoshtaria has concluded: "It is likely that a new investigation will provoke consequences that can be devastating to the Georgian state: 1) minimize the non-recognition policy, and 2) the abolition of the term "occupied territories"( it should be noted, along with this is taking place the process of legislative changes on occupation, which is not least problematic), 3) return of refugees is out of the question, if we want to present ourselves as an aggressor - the Georgian government wants to whip itself as a non-commissioned officer's widow. In such a case, the international community somehow solves the problem, of course, not in favor of the expelled refugees. I`d like to say without hesitation that finally it will destroy the very foundation of our territorial integrity - it's hard to imagine how we will be able to keep the occupied Georgian territory when we call ourselves the aggressors! Especially, when there is a vitally concerned party - Russia, which for several years has been allocating all its funds for the development of this scenario. We have to realize that this process has a direct impact on the basis of the Georgian state."
This interview illustrates the fear of political circles of Georgia, close to Mikhail Saakashvili, of the objective investigation of the causes of the 2008 war, as if the Georgian society is officially told the truth, it will be harmful to their image, and, consequently, to their political influence, while the political image of Ivanishvili and his entourage, on the contrary, will increase. Therefore the environment of Saakashvili is trying to prevent a new investigation, covering up their interests by the alleged concern for the state.
At the same time, playing to improve their ranking and at the same time, the international image of Georgia, Ivanishvili's team continues to make sharp statements about the double-dealing policy of Saakashvili towards the international community, declaring the fight against terrorism.
The article "Ivanishvili does not exclude a terrorist link between Boston and Georgia" on April 26, 2013 writes: "The Prime Minister of Georgia Bidzina Ivanishvili does not exclude a terrorist link between Boston and Georgia. He said this on the "Rustavi 2" channel. Here is the detailed quotation from the statement of Ivanishvili: "I think that maybe there is actually some link between the Boston terrorists and his training in Georgia. One foreign journalist asked me about it, but I refrained from premature conclusions. His question was based on the report of the Ombudsman, and so he tried to get my confirmation. I can accept the Ombudsman`s statements and suspicions, but not as the evidence. Let`s wait for the investigation process to be completed. I think we`ll learn a lot of shocking news. Cooperation with the authorities of the former government with gunmen and terrorists is more than real. If confirmed, it would be shocking for us. "
However, innovative policy by Ivanishvili meets resistance within the government of Georgia.
April 26, 2013 in an interview with "Rustavi 2", the Prime Minister of Georgia Bidzina Ivanishvili said that in Georgia's military doctrine Russia was no longer mentioned so strictly as an enemy, as in the concept developed by the Security Council. According to him, the new doctrine, as well as in the document adopted by the Parliamentary Committee of Foreign Relations, the tone is softened.
The next day, April 27, 2013, the Minister of Defense of Georgia Irakli Alasania - a relative of President Saakashvili - said: "There are no fundamental changes in the evaluation and analysis of these threats. Russia, its military occupation and armed forces represent the most significant threat to national security. Based on this fact, our defense doctrine and strategy are also focused on these threats. There are no essential changes. "
This is stated in the article of IA "Georgia Online" on April 27, 2013 "Russia poses the most significant threat to the national security of Georgia - Minister of Defense."
Against this background, the President of Georgia Mikhail Saakashvili continues to lose the remnants of his former boundless influence and limitless power in the country. His party has lost dismally the mid-term elections to the Parliament of Georgia.
"According to the independent MP of the City Parliament of Kutaisi Georgy Shavgulidze, after leaving the faction "National Movement" by nine members the "nationals" have no more majority in the City Assembly of Kutaisi. As noted by Shavgulidze in an interview with "MediaNews", to date, in the "National Movement" of Kutaisi there are only five deputies, and he thinks that a few more members will leave this faction... In all, there are 24 deputies in the City Parliament of Kutaisi "- writes" MediaNews "in the article" I "National Movement" has no longer a majority in the Kutaisi City Parliament. "
According to the Minister of Justice of Georgia Thea Tsulukiani, "the President is alone who cannot show his power, except a veto." She believes that "Mikhail Saakashvili is the most tragic first person in Georgia since the independence." This writes the news agency "MediaNews" in the article, "Thea Tsulukiani: Mikhail Saakashvili – the most tragic first person," on April 26, 2013.
Even in the upcoming celebration of the Independence Day of Georgia on May 26 Mikhail Saakashvili will no longer participate as the president of his country, but as an ordinary citizen. "According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia Maia Panjikidze, President Mikhail Saakashvili will participate in the events on May 26 as an ordinary citizen" (Article "The president will attend the May 26 as an ordinary citizen - Maya Pandzhikidze," April 26, 2013).
After the defeat of Sakakashvili`s party in Kutaisi new details have emerged about the abuses of his protege - Mayor of Kutaisi Beso Bregadze.
IA "MediaNews" in the article "The Mayor of Kutaisi planned to finance from the reserve fund of the City Hall the arrival of 600people to attend the action on April 19 - Soso Manjavidze" writes: "According to one of the leaders of the party" Alliance Partners" Soso Manjavidze, the Mayor of Kutaisi Beso Bregadze planned to finance from the reserve fund in Tbilisi City Hall the arrival of 600 people to attend the scheduled April 19 action. According to Manjavidze, at the today`s press conference in the Kutaisi City Parliament will be raised the issue of impeachment of the mayor of Kutaisi, and by the end of the impeachment his power will be restricted. According to him, this man is spending public resources on the interests of the party "National Movement". According to Manjavidze, the impeachment of the mayor is of the greatest moral and critical importance. "The whole impeachment procedure will last for 10 days, but the mayor`s power will be restricted till the completion of the procedures," - said Soso Manjavidze. "
We will hear a lot of interesting things taking place in Georgia.

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