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Sunday, 24 June 2018


Sukhum and Tskhinval: a no-return pact

2011-08-29 14:13

Sukhum and Tskhinval: a no-return pact. 21332.jpegGeorgia is more often called a failed state, and not without reason. After the Soviet Union collapsed Tbilisi never managed to prove to be an independent unit. Sakartvelo's political fragility did not let it cope with an outburst of ethnic conflicts. The last straw of the metropolis' unpredictable behavior was the August-2008 war, which fully released the partially recognized republics from under the Georgian oppression.


Excessive trust in Washington has played a low-down trick on Georgia. Being heir to Zviad Gamsakhurdia's nationalistic policy, Mikhail Saakashvili had innocently believed that it would help him not only enhance his own statehood but also increase the country's weight in the international arena. However, the United States' careful instructions were interpreted by the Georgian leader in an initially wrong way and now the White House has got no particular reason to support the failed vassal.

For American administration, the Caucasus was a sweet spot that could help restrain Moscow. Tbilisi's complete separation from the Kremlin gave Washington a chance to admit Georgia in the European Union and NATO, establish its military bases and locate antiballistic missile defense elements right under the nose of the tiresome Russia, which constantly throws grit in America's bearings. But the Clear Field operation frustrated both the USA's hopes and Mikhail Saakashvili's dreams. Ethnic cleansings gave South Ossetia the right to use the UN's international acts for self-determination and leave Sakartvelo's "territorial integrity" for good. 

Tbilisi still hopes to bring the "separatist enclaves" back under its protectorate and enter in the North-Atlantic Alliance. But the tool for pressing the world community - the notorious "territorial integrity" - is losing relevance day by day for many reasons, for example, because for the most period of its statehood, Sakartvelo was divided in several formations: the kingdoms of Kartli, Imeretia and Kakhetia and the principalities of Mingrelia, Tao-Klardzheti, Samtskhe-Saatbago and Adzharia. All of them were controlled by two hostile empires, the Iranian and the Turkish. Thus, Georgia simply has no right to demand unity with Abkhazia and South Ossetia, which have long declared a course towards freedom and sovereignty, not to mention the well-known cancellation of the Soviet regulatory acts securing Sukhum and Tskhinval to the Caucasian republic. 

Georgian aggression in August 2008 put an end to the enclaves, which transformed into sovereign states. The existence of a polyethnic and multiconfessional state is no easy task. It is possible only if its governors have got a serious political will. Having put the stake on Saakashvili, Washington backed the wrong horse. The mistake backfired on it by the loss of dissemination of the American hegemony in the Caucasus. Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia and Sudan are the examples that should have given Mishiko the right ideas but he waved them aside like a troublesome fly. And now he keeps turning to the UN, calling on them to punish the "wretched occupants" from Russia and bring the lost territories back to Georgia.

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