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  The Georgians proceed to rule the state from the streets

Auđra Radzevičiűtë
2008 03 20

Georgia‘s opposition still requires recalculation of votes of the presidential elections, resignation of the minister of Interior, investigation of the mass disorders in the fall of the last year, determination of the new principle for establishment of the election commissions on parity principles etc.  Whereas a rally of the united opposition organizes the protest campaign „Thieves of Vote“ on 7 February. B.Patarkacishvili, a candidate to presidents, promised another storm – he promised to establish a new party and publicize discreditable material, including the news that the Georgian authorities have ordered the Chechens to murder him.

Political passions have not seized until now, however the interest in „the organization of revolution“ is gradually decreasing. Consequently, a question arises: what is the Georgian opposition, are its requirements correct, is it supported by the Georgians and what could be the outcome of all the above?

Firstly, we must not forget that the Georgian opposition consists of various persons seeking different goals. With some of them the Georgian authorities communicate, whereas the others are threatened by jail.

It is also interesting that on 5 January 2008, during the plebiscite which has taken place in the presidential elections, more than 70 percent of the electorate said „yes“ to the country‘s membership in NATO. The opposition does not argue the above results. The most successful, but defeated candidate to presidents L.Gachechiladze, managed to demonstrate hostility to Russia before the elections. In November of 2007, while taking part in the video conference Tbilisi-Moscow, he said: „I do not think in Russian, therefore I‘ll speak Georgian“, and added that the time has come for formal Georgia‘s withdrawal from the CIS. There are only few friends of Moscow among the leaders of Georgia‘s opposition. Despite that, the Russian media tried to support the opposition and denied a possibility that M.Saakashvili could win the elections honestly. Most probably this notion was received „from the top“.

This spring Georgia will have elections to the parliament. The opposition would make all the efforts so as to stay „on the wave“ before the event. It might consider, that it would be inexpedient if authorities fulfilled all its key requirements by 15 February.  For instance, M.Saakashvili agrees to change the principles for establishment of the election commissions and elections to the parliament are executed according to different conditions. In case of the loss the opposition looses one of its key arguments allowing to state that elections were not free and honest. How could then be possible to invite people to streets, offend the president and call him dictator?

Authorities have to pull together before the elections to parliament in order to “knock” many serious arguments from the opposition. That‘s why M.Saakashvili announced the program „United Georgia Without Poverty“ and expects the results from the new Government in 50 days. The budget of 2008 envisages 1,1 billion US$ for social needs (recently it was the total Georgian budget), and the program includes such activities as support in getting prepared for spring works, construction of roads and rural out-patient institutions, renovation of schools, increase of pensions etc. According to Prime Minister V.Gurgenidze, stability is instrumental for implementation of the above plans. Consequently, if you want to live better, stop ruling the state from streets.

According to The Washington Times, M.Saakashvili, who initiated a term like „colored revolution” into the politilogy practice, must do everything to make the street policy of his country a past. The Russian website expert.ru agrees with the Americans: „in 2004 M.Saakashvili came to presidents „from the street“, won elections on the wave of „the Rose Revolution“ and did not have enemies. This gave birth to an illusion that he can only be eliminated „by the street“. According to the above website, „withdrawal of M.Saakashvili, inquired by the crowd, would mean not a withdrawal of a political actor, but a step towards demolition of the state in Georgia“.

Without any doubt, the intellectual country‘s opposition understands everything perfectly well. However, it is not always possible to lay down the arms. Especially in such an emotional state of Caucasus as Georgia.

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