Ordinary citizens will have to pay for the aspiration of the Georgian leadership in NATO

Sun, 27/05/2018 - 17:50

Institutional cooperation between Georgia and NATO began in 1994, when Georgia became a member of the Partnership for Peace program. After the "Rose Revolution", since 2004 the cooperation between Georgia and NATO has become more intensive. In 2011, Georgia received the status of a "post-graduate student of NATO". In 2014, at a summit in Wales, a package of measures was approved that would assist Georgia in its striving for membership in the alliance.
Georgian officials and NATO representatives periodically make some optimistic statements about the prospects for the country's accession to the North Atlantic Alliance, but, on the contrary, tighten the reins by holding too hot horses.
"I think that all our members will express their strong support for Georgia with respect to membership, and we will continue to provide practical and political support," NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters at the end of the meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of 29 NATO member countries at the end of last month.
At the same time, Assistant Secretary General of NATO for Public Diplomacy Tachan Ildem visited the "NATO-Georgia" forum that opened in Tbilisi on April 30. During his speech, he said that he had brought "a clear signal" and promised Georgia support of the North Atlantic alliance in response to "Russia's actions."
Prime Minister Georgy Kvirikashvili at this forum has noted that in his country, in connection with the approaching NATO summit in Brussels, it is expected that there will be progress in Georgia both in terms of rapprochement with the North Atlantic alliance and democratic reforms in Georgia itself. He has expressed hope that the NATO summit will take decisions that "will further strengthen the opportunities for practical cooperation between Tbilisi and NATO."
Georgian President Georgi Margvelashvili in his speech called on NATO to strengthen its eastern flank, that is, its presence in Georgia.
Two weeks ago, NATO countries' warships arrived in the ports of Georgia to participate in joint military exercises. It is specified that the ships arrived belong to the fleets of Britain, Turkey, Romania and Bulgaria, are part of NATO's permanent second naval unit and are currently in the port of Poti.
Georgian Prime Minister Georgy Kvirikashvili, during a working visit to the US on May 23, speaking at the Peace Institute at a conference on a strategic partnership called "100 Years from the Establishment of the First Republic," said that 100 years ago Georgia had linked its path with The West.
He has stressed that Georgians never changed their desire for independence and freedom, because, by definition, these instincts sit in the genetic code of Georgians.
"Today Georgia is no longer at a crossroads. Our culture is European with an American touch. Our outlook is Western and transatlantic, as well as our values ​​and politics, "the Georgian Premier assured his friends and added that Georgia's commitment to Western values ​​and democracy was firm and inevitable.
He especially highlighted the role of the United States in the history of modern Georgia and noted that it was the US that had recognized Georgia's independence in 1991 as one of the first. And over the next 27 years, according to the Prime Minister's definition, Georgia had no friend and more reliable than the United States.
On May 22, at a meeting with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, he said: "The funds allocated in Georgia for the defense budget are already exceeding the NATO standards - 2%."
Kvirikashvili has expressed hope that at the forthcoming Brussels summit Georgia's progress will be appreciated and the country will take one more step on the way of integration with the Alliance.
And already on May 24 the Georgian government's press service reported that "high-ranking representatives of the US government promised the Prime Minister of Georgia that solid steps will be taken to integrate Georgia with NATO.
In a word, official information sources draw a blessed, glossy (in the political sense) picture of a single emotional outburst of the Georgian authorities, the Georgian people, on the one hand, and high-ranking NATO functionaries, on the other one. This evokes unobtrusive memories of the propaganda of the Soviet period.
In a rush of eloquence, the Georgian president even called Georgia's decision to join the North Atlantic Alliance "a bright choice of the Georgian people."
However, apparently, the president got excited about the Georgian people. In fact, more and more Georgians feel the tightening of the economic hammer on their necks. Contrary to the promises that have been heard for 30 years, with the increase in the level of involvement in NATO, the standard of living of the majority of the people of Georgia does not grow, but, on the contrary, falls.
Every day, the prices for goods grow in the supermarkets of Tbilisi, Batumi, Kutaisi and Gori, as well as in shops and spontaneous markets in small Georgian cities. And salaries for some categories of employees do not increase for several years, but for others they increase, but slowly. The level of pensions does not allow you to purchase even half of the necessary medicines.
Georgian voters felt themselves deceived also in the issue of abolishing the visa regime with Europe. They waited for it with hope, as they were promised the opportunity to go to work in Europe and return to Georgia with money earned in Europe, considerable by Georgian standards. Visas have been canceled. However, visas were canceled for those who do not want to earn money in Europe (for this, a working visa is still necessary, which gives the right to legal work), but for those who wish to travel to Europe with money earned in Georgia and spend it in Europe. This made Georgians feel deceived.
"Was it necessary to destroy our industry for this? Its modern plants and factories? ", ask in social networks patriotic Georgians, ordinary users, not connected with the ruling elite.
What is the real policy of the European states towards Georgians who go to Europe in search of an elementary opportunity to feed their families with honest labor? It is such that the Georgian press already openly calls it the expulsion of Georgians from Europe!
"Over the past four months, a total of 1,260 people were expelled from the EU countries to Georgia within the framework of readmission, and this, according to official figures, is the largest expulsion of Georgians over the past 20 years," writes the publication "Rezonansi" (which in its time was one of the most determined flagships of pro-Western propaganda) in an article titled "The most massive expulsion of Georgians from Europe in the past 20 years".
In a conversation with the publication, Georgian political scientist Soso Tsintsadze expressed his fear that such negative processes had already done its work and threw out the process of Georgia's accession to the European Union for a whole 10 years.
The publication also published the data that one of the Georgian news agencies received from the Interior Ministry. According to these data, the most citizens of Georgia over the past 4 months were expelled from Germany (854 people). This is followed by France (105 people), Holland (102), Austria (88), Sweden (29) and Greece (21).
In Georgia, the West's insistently imposed tolerant attitude towards dangerous new-fangled European trends, which are strongly condemned by the traditional culture of the Caucasian peoples, including Georgians, is particularly furious.
However, the voice of sensible people, as usual, remains a voice crying in the desert. Instead of listening to people who are genuinely worried about the future of their homeland, Georgian President Georgi Margvelashvili haughtily declared that "an information and propaganda war is being waged against NATO and Western values." But, if someone is waging an information war against NATO, then this is the Georgian government itself, which forces the people to tighten their belts every year. In these circumstances, distrust, or even dislike for NATO, among the Georgian people, especially young people, is not a consequence of some mythical propaganda in Georgia, but the natural, the only normal reaction of any thinking subject to the trampling of its most important rights and interests.
Lies of Westerners reign at every step. In 1988, they promised that without Moscow's "dictatorship," even from the export of tea, Georgia would become a prosperous power. What do we see today, after 30 years?
"In 1985, tea plantations in Georgia occupied about 70,000 hectares, from which 150,000 tons of tea were harvested. Now about 3000 tons of tea are produced per year, "Estonian journalist Hanneli Rudi quotes the information on the website" renegadetea.com "in today's article" The bored high-level manager went to Georgia to do real work "on the website of the Estonian information publication" Postimees ".
One of the main problems of today's Georgia is mass unemployment. In the hope of the multimillion-dollar money investments promised by the West, the country turned South Ossetia, Abkhazia into ruins, destroyed economic ties with Russia, closed its own factories and plants, which at one time was rightly proud of the entire Georgian people. And instead of gratitude, received from the West only a cold, arrogant indifference.
It is difficult to find a job in the Republic, and a good one is even more problematic. For the younger generation of Georgia, unemployment has become a scourge. The highest level is observed among young people between 25 and 35 years of age. It was this category of the population that could not get proper education and take a worthy place in the labor market. This forces young and promising people to leave their homeland in search of work. Labor migration from Georgia in recent years has reached its peak. A significant part went to Russia. Since mid-2016, the level of official unemployment has declined. Despite this, at the end of 2016 more than 25% of the able-bodied population remained officially unemployed. Those who are registered with the employment service are paid about 20 lari per month. Payments are made monthly for six months.
Particularly regrettable is the sad fact that the Georgian people continue to believe in the groundless promises of their authorities that have not changed for 30 years already.
The level of education is also falling.
"14% of students in Georgian schools at the age of about 10 years do not have minimal skills to understand what they read. These are the data of the international study of the literacy of schoolchildren PIRLS, the materials for which were collected in Georgia in 2016, "said the coordinator of this study, Natia Andguladze.
The negative consequences of the aspirations of the Georgian leadership for NATO are felt not only in the field of domestic policy, expressed in the discontent of broad sections of the population of Georgia with a fall in the standard of living, level, medicine, and the level of education. Such a policy is fraught with foreign policy problems.
Russia is categorically against deepening Georgia's cooperation with NATO. As Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has earlier said, instability remains in the South Caucasus, including provoked by Georgia's attempts to gain a foothold in NATO, and through the alliance in the region.
According to the press service of the Russian Foreign Ministry, concern over the deepening cooperation between NATO and Georgia was expressed by Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin at a meeting with Georgian Prime Minister Zurab Abashidze's special representative.
"Georgia's partners in the North Atlantic alliance do not hide that they are arming it precisely to "contain Russia ". In this situation, the Russian side has the right to take adequate measures to strengthen its security, as well as the security of its allies, "the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
"In this situation, the Russian side has the right to take adequate measures to strengthen the security of its and its allies," note in Moscow.
The sharply hostile position taken by the Georgian leadership towards Russia is all the more surprising because Russia is leading in terms of remittances to Georgia. In April 2018, 35.3 million dollars were transferred from this country. The share of Russia in April is 28.5% of the total amount of money transfers to Georgian commercial banks using electronic transfer systems. The second place is occupied by Greece, where only $ 14.9 million was transferred to Georgia, the National Bank of Georgia said on the website, and only $ 12.7 million was transferred from the United States of America.
However, the current Georgian leadership is divorced from the grim realities into which the Georgian people are being plunged. Of course, it does not care about the troubles of ordinary Georgian workers, who will have to pay for all the negative consequences of the aspirations of the Georgian leadership to NATO.

Inal Pliev, an international expert, especially for the news agency "Res"

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