×
Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

No Threat of Egypt Scenario In Georgia

Sozar Subari used to come across as a passionate, consistent and zealous defender of human rights when he was Georgia’s ombudsman, but as soon as he crossed the line into politics he began to unravel.

On Feb. 15, Subari told a crowd at the opening of his newly created Georgian Party in Kutaisi that we can expect to see a repeat of Egypt events in Georgia, but not until the spring.

“The first events occurred in Egypt and Tunisia in the winter, and they will repeat themselves in Georgia in the spring,” Subari said. “The public should unite to put an end to the authoritarian regime in Georgia as soon as possible.”

Guys like Subari forget that the reason President Mikheil Saakashvili’s National movement has consolidated power is because they let him — by pursuing a course of screaming “Down with the king!” instead of actually addressing the needs of their constituents.

When Levan Gachechiladze ran against Saakashvili in 2008, his platform was “Vote for me, and I promise not to be your president!” which was a clear demonstration of how Georgians understand the concept of democracy.

The rag-tag coalition of opposition leaders failed to bring down the regime with their two-bit replicate Rose Revolution in 2009 because all they could offer was vile slogans. Former Speaker of the parliament Nino Burjanadze showed people how democratic she was by shouting “No dialogue!” This was the same Burjanadze who backed Saakashvili’s decision to send the cops in to beat those same people in 2007.

The difference between what is happening across the Middle East and what will not happen in Georgia again is that Georgia has not only been there, but it has proved these things can work. Despite what you think of Saakashvili, you can’t deny that his government has turned the country from a failed state to a functioning nation with a clear vision for the future.

Saakashvili will finish his term, like it or not, and if the opposition doesn’t want him to occupy the post of prime minister, then they are going to have to offer people something more than Egyptian-inspired protests.

Paul Rimple is a journalist in Tbilisi.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

Once
Monthly
Annual
Continue
paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more