Monday, August 22, 2011

Week 15-21 August: A question of time

It's time to celebrate anniversaries... from now on till the end of the year, the 20th birthday of the the Soviet dis-Union will be remembered. August is the month of the so called failed coup in Moscow. Then most post Soviet States will mark their independence day.
With one eye turned to the past, the other one should be turned to the future. Is it possible?

Both eyes are wide open in Sukhumi, where the first post independence+partial recognition President is going to be elected. An episode of defamation (?) has been played against Ankvab which poisoned to a certain extent the pre-election period. Allegedly, a document made public accuses him to have been spying for Tbilisi during the war in the early 90ies. Meanwhile Shamba had a minor car accident.
So far it seems that no one can make at the first round. But it's just a question of time to check if polls really mirror voters' preferences. Elections are scheduled for the 26th.
Apart from pre-election dirty tricks, the transfer of power (or legitimation of the present ruling elite) will most probably be peaceful.

Going back to the memories of the last two decades, no cases of peaceful transfer of power were recorded in Georgia as universally recognized. And the bad trend is not improving. Again now, polarization prevails. Ex parliamentary Speaker, now opposition figure, Nino Burjanadze's husband has been sentenced to five years and six months in jail. The verdict of a Court always deserves respect. Still, whatever, however, whenever, whoever, personal confrontation seems always to be on the A list in Tbilisi.

In Yerevan the 5th round of the (somehow self declared) official opposition and the authorities took place. The opposition is taking distance from the most extremist fringes of its own base, now that it's sitting with the majority, and that it's clear that no spring revolution will take place in Armenia, and not just because it's August. Unless the crisis really strikes badly after the hot summer everybody is experiencing.
Dialogue should always be welcomed, but as the Armenian National Congress has built its present identity as an alternative to Sargsyan's power, will it be able to deliver a message of consistency? Isn't it locked in negotiations, now?

A question of time for Azerbaijan, as well.
During the Global Policy Forum, Yaroslavl 7-8 Sept, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Turkish President Abdullah Gül planned to dedicate some time to the discussion of the Nagorno-Karabakh issue. The topic, hot on the agenda of the former, has definitely a regional dimension, but for Baku has a very special domestic one, as well.
No one expects big surprise by any meeting any more. But, who knows, it may be a question of time.

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