Monday, June 13, 2011

Week 6-12 June: Basic Principles

Welcome developments in Armenia. Between the ruling party and "radical" opposition flexibility replaces polarization.
Basic principles of good governance, indeed.
Why now?

Levon Ter Petrosyan might have realized that his consensus and his ability to capitalize discontent are not enough to pursue the goal of removing the current leadership. For both opposition and majority, what happened in Georgia might have been food for thoughts. Embarrassing and de-legitimizing events which won't ever be encouraged, but - quite the opposite - discourage support. A path leading to the opposite direction of integration into EU, NATO, international diplomacy or whatever.
Aware of his weakness, he sought a way to maximize what he had gained so far. Being considered the counterpart of the President could be not that bad, for someone who scored 20% at the Presidential elections in 2008.

Serzh Sargsyan displayed once again his stability. He didn't lose his temper or allowed himself to make stupid mistakes like a violent repression of the opposition but, on the opposite, from the firm standpoint of someone who's ruling and wants to keep ruling for another mandate, tabled some measures which immediately met the international support (a proper place for oppositions' protests, amnesty, inquiry on 03/2008 events) and re-assure many Armenian voters about the moderate politics of the current leadership. Moreover he knows very well that the responsibilities of what happened in March 2008 fall first and foremost on then outgoing President Kocharyan's shoulders, and he may be interested in discrediting him. Already then, back to 2008, he dropped a couple of statements assessing that it was compulsory for him to fully agree with previous President's crisis management.

A good example of rational choices.
Something which was apparently missing in Georgia, with predictable results. Strong antagonizing is not paying back, internationally and domestically.
These basic principles may be needed also in view of other Basic Principles... those that ought to be signed in Kazan 06/25.
If - it would be better to say "IF"- whatever substantial is to be agreed AND signed AND then implemented about Karabakh, there cannot be much room for dissent. Sargsyan and Aliev will need an extremely high rate of consensus to make the civil society accept some sort of compromise. Unless they are ready to face a strong backlash in terms of popularity, if not social unrest.

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