ARMENIA CAUGHT IN WEB OF GEORGIAN POLITICS
Editorial 9-5 Sep.t 2015
By Edmond Y. Azadian
There is no love lost between the Armenians and Georgians. These two
Christian nations in a heavily Muslim neighborhood, have lived together
for centuries. Armenians, true to their propensity for flourishing
in foreign lands, built Tbilisi, Georgia's capital, into a center
for arts and culture during most of the 19th century. As a reward,
they suffered Georgian jealousy which grew until the Soviet takeover
of the country in 1920, when under the guise of the proletarian ruling
over the capitalists, Georgians expropriated the homes and lands of
the Armenians and began to implement the darkest kind of nationalism
under the Soviet rule.
When the Soviet empire collapsed, many nationalities on the periphery
found themselves with conflicting territorial claims. A similar
situation erupted earlier in the 20th century, when the Czarist
empire collapsed. Armenians and Georgians had a brief war as a result
of which the historic Armenian province of Javakhk was left on the
Georgian side of the border.
Jealousy, conflicts, back-stabbing have characterized the relations
of these two nations more than cooperation and friendship.
Since its independence, Georgia has sided and cooperated with Turkey
and Azerbaijan in every possible instance, whether voting at the United
Nations or building rail and energy networks. Tbilisi has cooperated
with Turkey and Azerbaijan to isolate Armenia and to strangle its
economy. In a recent interview, the Georgian ambassador to Ankara,
Irakli Koplatadze, announced that the trilateral cooperation between
Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey is "on the rise. In line with the
pipeline, projects of global importance [Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan
oil pipeline, the Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum gas pipeline, ongoing
Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway construction and the Trans-Anatolian gas
pipeline] the recently launched energy-producing and transmitting
projects serve the best long-term interests of the whole region to
ensure security, stability and prosperity."
Of course, Armenia does not figure in any of the above projects and
it has been deliberately left out, thanks to the collusion of Tbilisi
with Armenia's enemies.
Parallel to a hostile foreign policy, a domestic repressive rule
is also applied to the sizable Armenian community in Georgia --
confiscation of churches, closure of schools, theaters, newspapers
and above all, persecution of the Armenian majority in Javakhk.
Unfortunately, Armenia does not have leverage over Georgia and
is forced to pursue a policy of pretend friendship, simply not to
Landlocked Armenia, blockaded by Turkey and Azerbaijan, has only two
access points to the rest of the world markets, Iran and Georgia.
Armenia has mostly been left to the tender mercies of merciless
During the war in August 2008 between Russia and Georgia, Armenia's
trade and communications suffered tremendously. It was implied by the
Iranian government that Armenia can serve as a trade bridge between
the Gulf states and the Black Sea. In order to achieve that status,
Yerevan has to preserve friendly relations with Tbilisi.
Much of the tension between the two nations has been the result of
the hostility between Moscow and Tbilisi, since Armenia is pro-Russia.
President Mikhail Saakashvili's knee-jerk anti-Russian policy left
Georgia in shambles, during which the country suffered territorial
loss and economic decline. The Georgian Dream Party, headed by Bidzina
Ivanishvili, performed some damage control and brought back a measure
of normalcy. Armenia exercised a policy of complementarity for a
while successfully. Now it is Georgia's turn to adopt a multi-vector
The country remains torn between the two poles, best illustrated by the
different approaches by two representatives, one Tbilisi's ambassador
to Ankara Irakli Kopladze, the other the former speaker of the Georgian
Parliament, Nino Burjanadze, who was on a speaking tour in Moscow.
The former continues to advocate for NATO membership and European
integration; the latter is lamenting the cost of Saakashvili's
anti-Russian policy and provocation to start a war. At that time,
even Washington slapped the wrist of its ally for going too far.
Russia has drawn a line against having NATO forces on its borders. In
2011, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev made a statement that Russia's
military action was intended to counter Georgia's NATO ambitions.
To continue the same policy is tantamount to tempt the devil and it
will not yield any better results this time than Saakashvili was able
The former speaker of the Georgian parliament, Burjanadze, who no
longer enjoys any official capacity, was in a public relations stunt
to improve relations with Russia. She has met many in the media
and politicians in Moscow and is even rumored to have met President
Vladimir Putin. She openly blames Georgia's woes on Saakashvili and has
stated, "At one time, I believed that joining NATO would be beneficial
for my country and I have contributed to that policy. But since 2008,
I have changed my views radically."
Borjanadze is seeking to restore relations with Russia. Recent polls
also indicate that there is 31 percent support of that policy. Many
Georgians openly embrace the idea that their country should join
Incidentally, Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili this week
fired his foreign minister and replaced her with the economy minister
in a surprise move.
Burjanadze has concluded one of her remarks by stating, "small nations
have to think about their own self-interest and should not have the
illusion that others may stake their interests for them."
Burjanadze's trip to Russia was covered by Ruben Hayrapetyan, Moscow
political analyst of Azg newspaper in Yerevan. Referring to rising
anti-Russian sentiment in Armenia, the analyst has used a shrewd title,
"Let us learn from the mistakes of others."
However, there is some relaxation on the border between Armenia
and Georgia, mostly because Tbilisi is trying to repair the broken
relations with Moscow. Armenia has been helpful in that rapprochement,
because that role also contributes to its self-interest.
Recently, it was announced that a school for 1,000 students in being
built in Tbilisi for Armenian students. Trade delegations and exchanges
on all levels have been rising between the two countries.
The government is even introducing measures for improving the economy
We cannot count too much on Georgian good will but Armenia can
certainly benefit from its improved relations with Tbilisi. Armenia is
closer to capitalizing on its role as a trade bridge by coordinating
the two components of its foreign policy. On the one side Iran is
emerging from sanctions while on the other hand, Georgia seems to be
more amenable to better relations with Russia and this Armenia.
Armenia has been a hostage to Georgian politics and now its improved
relations will bring Yerevan out of the Georgian political web.
ARMENIA CAUGHT IN WEB OF GEORGIAN POLITICS
Posted 03 September 2015 - 04:21 AM
ARMENIA CAUGHT IN WEB OF GEORGIAN POLITICS
- onjig likes this
Posted 04 September 2015 - 10:33 AM
I always though it lamentable that Armenia and Georgia, two Christian people haven't banded together. Their lack of friendship has played into the hands of the perpetual enemy.
Posted 08 September 2015 - 12:04 AM
A Georgian-Armenian alliance would've certainly helped Armenia's economy. Unfortunately, the Georgians have not acted like the sharpest tools in the shed, wooed by the short term profit of Turkish, Azeri trade benefits as well as encouragement from the US,
they've already allowed themselves to be misled by the US, won't be long before the turks use their status with Georgia to infiltrate their country and gain irreversible influence. Hopefully they will wake up. Georgia is second on the turks hit list, it looks like they just don't know it yet.
Posted 09 September 2015 - 01:16 PM
GEORGIAN-ARMENIANS ALARMED WITH KHULO ANTI-ARMENIAN DOCUMENT
10:50, 9 September, 2015
YEREVAN, SEPTEMBER 9, ARMENPRESS. 9 human rights protection NGOs of the
Armenian Community in Georgia turned to the Government of the country
urging to respond to the document on the official website of Khulo
(inhabited mainly by Islamized Georgians and Turks) City Council,
Adjara autonomous republic. As "Aremnpress" was informed from the
Armenian Community of Georgia the studies of the document referring
to the report on the activities in Khulo Municipality revealed that
in reality there are signs of incitement to ethnic discrepancies and
hatred towards the Armenians.
In particular, the document speaks of Georgia former President
Mikheil Saakashvili who is presented as Armenian in an obvious
negative context. "That Armenian Sahak has so much brains to follow
Zurab Zhvania Murder Case from distance. ", reads the document. The
document was adopted on behalf of by Khulo Municipality "Georgian
Dream" political party.
In the statement of the Armenian Community of Georgia the heads of
the leading coalition are urged to investigate the fact and inform
the society about sanctions that can be imposed on the representation
of the regional structure of the party for such an unacceptable and
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