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Tbilisi: the return of the “former ones”2009-03-19 09:24
Changes are once again afoot in Georgia. Parliament square is again holding a rally. Behind the political scenes passions are boiling over. People are intending to make their second coming onto the public stage who seemed to have been long behind cast aside as "former ones" by the revolutionary wave. Following the former defence minister Irakli Okurashvili, another minister, also defence, is roaring back to Georgia - Tengiz Kitovani.
The latter is again one of the "hawks". If Okurashvili was only promising to see in the 2007 New Year in Tskhinvali, then in 1992 Kitovani actually did send his guardsmen on the approach to Abkhazia. And in 1995 ended up behind bars "for the creation of illegal armed units".
Tengiz Kitovani already has one revolution behind him. Admittedly, back then, the regime change was not called a revolution, just that in distant 1991 the National Guard led by Kitovani came out in opposition of the first Georgian president, Zviad Gamsakhurdia, and supported the return of Shevardnadze. Now Kitovani, who is in Moscow, has said that he intends to take part in the protest actions planned by the opposition.
It emerges that Saakashvili does not only have opponents in Moscow. Last week Georgia's future prospects (that was the name of the conference organized by the Austrian Academy of Freedom) were discussed in Vienna by the disgraced businessman Levan Pirveli, the former governor of the Kvemo-Kartli region Levan Mamaladze, and also representatives of the entourage of the former head of Adzharia, Aslan Abashidze.
Therefore Mikheil Saakashvili decided to issue a warning: "The Revanchists will not manage to return to Georgia and establish their own ways here." He said this on 14th March in Kutaisi, reports Trend News. Perhaps it's just an irony of fate, but on the same day Tengiz Kitovani, who supported Saakashvili in 2003, expressed his readiness to join in the current "revolutionary processes" in Georgia. The representative of the "old guard" reminded the public of the sins of the previous authorities. He said that Eduard Shevardnadze himself had organized the terrorist attack on himself, and had accused the former minister for state security, Igor Giorgadze, of organizing it. (This is talking about events in 1995). "I didn't exactly support Igor Giorgadze," remarked Tengiz Kitovani, "I am just saying that he was persecuted by Shevardnadze, who organized the terrorist attack on himself."
The former KGB head Igor Giorgadze, whom Moscow was counting on, was regarded as someone from the past in Georgia. He had not been in his homeland for about 15 years, and he has no close allies or supporters left there. Representatives of the Justice party, which united his followers, were arrested in September 2006 on suspicion of planning a state coup. But they didn't manage to revive the party. About two years ago, only Irina Sarishvili (the wife of Gia Chanturia, a close ally of Zviad Gamsakhurdia) was not hiding her loyalty towards Igor Giorgadze. But at the early presidential elections in 2008 she only gained 0.2% of the vote (that was the rating of Igor Giorgadze, whom she was effectively representing).