The messenger logo

Prospects of New Georgian Idea

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, June 17
As is known, soon after the May 30 elections former Public Defender Sozar Subari left the Alliance for Georgia saying he planned to create a new opposition union. He said this will not be just another of the regular regroupings of the opposition spectrum but a long-term project based on national values. An ordinary regrouping would not change things much but this project, which is called the New Georgian Idea, is designed to create an ideological alternative to the ruling administration which will pursue distinctly different policies based on upholding Georgia's traditional values and introducing new visions. A convention held on June 9 decided that this project is to be elaborated thoroughly and different policy drafts be considered.

This union would involve uniting around an idea rather than a particular personality or leader or against somebody. The initiators of it are now searching for this idea, knowing that is has to be something which will primarily attract the people rather than other politicians. It should touch the hearts of the Georgian people in such a way as to ensure that everyone wants to play a part in the development of the country and the nation, states Erosi Kitsmarishvili, a supporter of this initiative. Those involved have already started working on this strategy of national development. Sozar Subari thinks that the union's big idea should be based on three major principles: individuality, progress and security. Every policy should be formed on the basis of these principles, he says. The major aim of the Georgian state should be to preserve the character of Georgia as a means of developing it, he says. For a country squeezed between many others in this epoch of globalisation it is of vital importance to move with the times on one hand and maintain the individuality of the country on the other, the Subari concept goes. However he admits that this concept needs to be perfected and elaborated precisely.

The point of this project is to create an alternative plan for Georgia's development which the people will subscribe to, as the administration's vision is built on a distorted view of what the West is and supports. Philosopher Zaza Piralishvili thinks that ultraliberalism has become the philosophical basis of Georgia's development, and Subari has stated that under Saakashvili Georgia has become a testing ground for aggressively ultraliberal ideas. The Government's ideology has left people feeling that they are not wanted in their own country, as they will either be cast aside as unsuitable for the new system or are forcefully dragged in unacceptable directions. Subari has accused the current administration of the deliberate destruction of the Georgian national identity through policies wrapped in the guise of Westernisation.

Zaza Piralishvili has stated that if there is anything the current administration is afraid it is an alternative national development concept based on actual Western values rather than self-serving policies the Government chooses to call Western. Such values should be articulated by people of high authority and reliability. Many Georgians have already welcomed this initiative, which envisages broad public involvement. Given the current lack of international confidence in the Saakashvili administration, despite its own professed Western orientation, a credible opposition which really does speak the same language as the West is likely to find powerful friends both inside and outside the country.