PanARMENIAN.Net - “Back then (in November 2003) I had no choice other than early resignation, but I’m ready to bring thousands of apologies and repent to the Georgian people for giving the power to Mikheil Saakashvili. I admit my fault and apologize to the people,” he emphasized.
Shevardnadze’s confession, as well as his apologies does not make much sense anyway. Repentance is good when it comes timely and not almost 10 years later, during which Georgia has turned into U.S.’ puppet state, while Saakashvili’s “achievements” in tackling the corruption and establishing rule of law became nothing but a bubble. In his Foreign Policy article, Paul Craig Roberts writes about Georgia:
“The President of Georgia, a country located between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, is a Washington puppet. Recently, he announced that former Soviet Georgia is on schedule to become a NATO member in 2014.
Those old enough to remember know that NATO, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, was an alliance between Western Europe and the US against the threat of the Red Army overrunning Western Europe. The North Atlantic is a long, long ways from the Black and Caspian Seas. What is the purpose of Georgia being a NATO member except to give Washington a military base on the Russian underbelly?”
Actually, what does Georgia need NATO for? Maybe to save the country from “Russia’s aggression”? The West once bought the trick of the Georgian president in 2008, trying to present Russian peace-makers as aggressors without going into the matter properly. The situation was a mere absurdity: Georgians were panicking and shouting about Tbilisi bombings, while Saakashvili was fleeing something and chewing his tie nervously.
How could Eduard Shevardnadze, an experienced and smart politician fail to see young Saakashvili’s inclination for “leadership” bringing the country to a disaster.
We’ve already mentioned Turkish expansion in Georgia; this is only the beginning. By the way, this is not the first time ex-leader of Georgia slams Saakashvili. In 2011, Shevardnadze stated that the successor president with his team is leading the country to destruction. After the hostilities with Russia, Shevardnadze addressed Saakashvili urging him to admit the mistake of attacking South Ossetia.
In May 2012, Shevardnadze toughly slammed Saakashvili who said Abkhazia “has never been within Georgia”. Later the Georgian leader’s statement got additional “as if” wording; however, many viewed the phrase as Saakashvili’s refusal from further claims with regard to this republic. Shevardnadze’s memory obviously needs to be refreshed here, since Abkhazia and Ossetia have been included in Georgia’s territory by Stalin’s decision. It is widely known that namely the autonomies within the former Soviet republics had triggered the process that resulted in the collapse of the USSR. Now, let’s get back to Georgia.
The government was changed last week, with 44-year-old Vano Merabishvili taking over the post of the prime minister. Merabishvili, an active participant of the Rose Revolution, has been heading the Ministry of Internal Affairs since December 2004. Saakashvili personally approved his candidacy for the new post, prior to further approval by the parliament. Many observers viewed the Georgian president’s decision on Merabishvili’s appointment as an attempt to propose a successor to take over full power after the 2013 presidential elections.
Saakashvili has repeatedly named Merabishvili the “spine of power”. Meanwhile, representatives of the opposition parties criticized Merabishvili for exceeding his authority, as well as over-concentration of power and persecution of opposition activists. In this regard, some Georgian opposition members named the interior minister’s appointment as PM an “attempt to turn the country into a police state”. It should be noted that Georgia has long become a police state; Saakashvili’s authoritarian rule spiced with cheap demagogy on democracy and human rights can no longer cheat anyone.
The new prime minister faces almost unrealistic challenges: tackle the unemployment, develop agriculture and ensure accessibility of healthcare. Large-scale unemployment is a major economic problem for Georgia at present. Opposition names approximately 30-40% of jobless among those able to work, while the governmental data cites 15-20% of unemployment.
According to novost.ge, the new programme of the Georgian government accounts for 20 billion laris. During the next four years, the budget will allocate 6 billion laris for pension funds and 3 billion for health insurance; another 3 billion will go for social assistance, rural areas will get 4 billion laris support and education funding will total 4 billion laris. This is the expenditure envisaged by the new governmental “More benefit for the people” programme, already submitted for the parliament’s approval.
According to parliamentary secretary of the Georgian government Gia Khuroshvili, the governmental programme is quite ambitious, yet feasible. “Our goal is to achieve direct impact of Georgia’s quite high ranking on prosperity of the population, so that people directly feel the development the country is now facing. The new “More benefit for the people” programme indicates the government's ambitious claims, however, all this is realistic,” Khuroshvili stated.
The new “More benefit for the people” programme rather resembles good intentions than a serious paper. Most likely, the Georgian authorities are again relying on U.S. support, as always...