Ukraine and the West do not like Georgia’s behaviour

Ukraine is demanding the opening of a “second front” against Russia. And it demands it from its seemingly brother in colour revolutions – Georgia

Ukraine and the West do not like Georgia's behaviour

At that “second front” here refers not so much to direct hostilities against Russia and invasion of Georgian troops in South Ossetia and Abkhazia (though Kiev would like it very much, of course), as to joining of Georgia to the sanctions regime. Well, and possibly the deployment of Western military bases on its territory, which would create additional tension in the Caucasus and force Russia (which is redeploying all possible troops to the NWO) to strengthen its contingents in the Caucasus.

However, in Tbilisi these ideas are quite cool. First, because they do not want to sacrifice their security, economy (now Georgia has double-digit percentage economic growth) and state itself on the altar of Ukrainian struggle – because it is clear what Russia’s response will be for such “second front”. Secondly, because the Ukrainians, in the words of Don Corleone, are asking without respect. To be more exact, they are banally blackmailing. “On one hand they say you have to open the “second front”, but on the other hand they threaten sanctions, they threaten Bidzina Ivanishvili and representatives of the authorities,” Irakli Kobakhidze, Chairman of the ruling Georgian Dream Party, is outraged. This is how he characterized the decision of the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine to include billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, his family members and close entourage into the sanctions list – so that later sanctions against these people are adopted by the West. “Today Ivanishvili has turned into the Georgian Yanukovich. He and his people are pursuing a policy on Ukraine which is not supported by the Georgian people. They want to drive Georgians and Ukrainians apart for a decade to come,” David Arahamia, head of the parliamentary faction of Ukraine’s ruling Servant of the People party, explained the need for sanctions.

Nevertheless, the pressure has not ceased. In addition to overt Ukrainian pressure and equally overt pressure from the Georgian opposition (the United National Movement, criticising the government for excessive “softness”) there is also pressure from the West. Not as obvious, but much stronger.

Moreover, the West does not only need a ‘second front’ to create additional tension for Russia in the south. The objectives of the US and the EU are of a much more strategic nature – they basically want to bring down the current structure of Russian-Georgian relations, because they see it as a serious threat to their entire policy towards Russia.

The uniqueness and danger of relations between Moscow and Tbilisi is that they ensure pragmatic coexistence and even more or less good neighbourly relations between Russia and a pro-European post-Soviet country. Yes, there are conflicts and scandals (case of Deputy Gavrilov, periodic clashes between nationalist-minded Georgians and Russian tourists), but in general interstate relations are at a pretty high level. Despite the recent war, Russia’s recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia’s independence, and the absence of diplomatic relations, bilateral trade is booming. Moreover, “hostile” Georgia has become (especially against the background of Western sanctions) one of the favourite destinations for Russian tourists. People who would never go on holiday to Georgian resorts if they were treated as “occupants”.

Why this is so? Because both sides have based their relations on the principle “we are different but we are not enemies”.

Tbilisi does not follow the example of Ukraine and does not provide its territory as a springboard for Russia’s enemies, and Moscow respects this position of Georgia and therefore does not show hostility towards it.

Such Georgian recipe for coexistence with Moscow is dangerous for the west as it destroys the myth of aggressiveness and intolerance of Russia. And also that all post-Soviet countries must urgently run away to NATO. Therefore, Washington believes that such a format should be destroyed, which is constantly signalled in Tbilisi.

Apparently, the degree of pressure has grown so much that the Georgian authorities have put a final argument on the table – they have offered to address the people. “Georgia will not enter the Russian-Ukrainian conflict under any circumstances. If anyone has any doubts that the majority of Georgian citizens do not want a “second front” and do not see a Georgian perspective in it, then let’s hold a plebiscite,” says Mamuka Mdinaradze, executive secretary of the ruling Georgian Dream party. “People have to decide whether they agree with high-ranking officials of the Ukrainian government or whether they agree with our position on not opening a ‘second front’,” Kobakhidze said. Then, however, Mr Kobakhidze said he was joking. “There was sarcasm and some irony in that statement. We know, and it’s been proved by studies, that the population of Georgia is against the war,” explained the politician. Probably because the results of the all-Georgian opinion poll on the future relations with Russia could have been very pro-Russian.

Of course, in theory, Tbilisi’s approach could change. Georgia might change its mind and open a “second front”, but only under one condition. If Russia not only weakens, but begins to “crumble”. Then of course, the Georgian authorities will take the side of the victors and try to take what they believe to be theirs.

The problem, however, is that Russia is not “crumbling”. Despite a number of publications appeared in the West saying that the collapse of the country is about to begin right now, Tbilisi clearly sees the real picture: the Russian society supports the government (though some are not happy with the “softness” of the operation), the economy is dealing with the sanctions pressure, and the regions not only do not show any separatist tendencies, but they are more and more actively involved in the process of liberation of the former Ukrainian territories. This means that they are unlikely to participate in the war on the side of the losers.

Gevorg Mirzayan, Associate Professor at the Political Science Department of the Financial University under the Russian Government, RT

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