Thursday, November 08, 2007

Democracy- Georgia style

"The President of the former Soviet republic has declared a 15-day state of emergency after security units forcibly dispersed protesters outside parliament with teargas and took an opposition TV station off air.
At least 500 people were treated in hospital after riot police fired gas and water cannon on crowds calling for the resignation of the president, who has been accused of corruption. The only television station now allowed to broadcast is state television."


And in which former Soviet Republic are these undemocratic, dictatorial measures being imposed? Belarus, described (inaccurately) by US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice as 'the last dictatorship in Europe? No, they are taking place in 'pro-western' Georgia, a country whose President Mikhail Saakashvili is a huge fan of NATO. So come on, Ms Rice, if you really are so concerned about dictatorships in the former Soviet republics, let's hear you denounce, loud and clear the recent undemocratic developments in Georgia. Demand that the government allows people to protest- as your department encouraged them to do in Georgia only a few years back, when the country had a different President. Otherwise, heaven forbid, people might believe that your enthusiasm for opposition street protests only extends to cases when they are protesting against governments that you don't like. We wouldn't want people to think that, would we?

4 comments:

Nick said...

Since when has the country that supposedly promotes 'freedom-n-democracy' been concerned to actually support democracies and condemn dictatorships? Since the election of Allende in Chile perhaps? Or maybe since the coming to power of Musharraf in Pakistan? I don't think so.

'Do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do' has almost always been the USA's only consistent principle - and it's pointless expecting anything else from them.

Luke said...

I'm interested in what you say about Belarus. Are you denying that it is a dictatorship? Or are you saying that there are other, similar dictatorships in Europe?

Stewart. said...

Had this been Belarus, then such behavour would probably have served as a pretext for more forceful intervention.
I hope the US and EU condemns the actions of the Georgian authorities. After all they wouldn't want to be accused of hypocrisy would they?

Charlie Marks said...

Good news: Saakashvili has announced early elections...