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10 years of the third millennium

By Messenger Staff
Thursday, December 30
In two days, the first ten years of the 21st century of the 3rd millennium will end. History does not change according to dates but for Georgia, these last ten years have changed history. Two very important events took place within this time frame. The first event was the Rose Revolution of 2003 and the second was the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008.

The Rose Revolution was the first of the so called colored revolutions. The major goal of the rose revolution was to cultivate the country’s sustainable development in the direction of democracy and preserving its development. This revolution was labeled from the very beginning as a beacon of democracy; however some analysts, particularly within Georgia, challenge the seemingly significant progress towards democracy in the past 7 years. Of course everything is comparative. The beacon is shining if you look at it from the eastern side but it is fading if you want to send signals to the west. Some analysts suggest that the administration created after the revolution could be evaluated not as democrats but rather as reformers. Indeed, international ratings show that Georgia is leading in regards to reforms though not necessarily democratic reforms. In regards to reforms, the Rose administration has taken a neo liberal direction and sometimes tries to reconcile such antagonistic types of notions. Georgian authorities for instance try to look like Singapore while simultaneously trying to integrate into the EU. Everything has two sides. The authorities increased the budget, influenced mass privatization, created good conditions for starting business and so on. Whereas the opponents challenge this by highlighting the dramatic increase of foreign loans, growing figures for unemployed and a tragic increase of people living below the poverty line.

The second most important event, as it was mentioned, was the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008, which challenged entire existence of Georgia’s statehood, as a result of which 1/5 of Georgia’s territories are occupied by Moscow. From 2007-09, the Rose administration faced serious problems but it managed to survive and by 2010 it now feels quite confident and secure. In 2010 a new constitution and a new taxation code were adopted, so for the beginning of the 21st century, Georgia seems to be quite stable from an official point of view. However, there are some challenges. Specifically, the upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections might create some problems for the ruling authorities.

In the next decade problems of territorial integration will remain a priority for the agenda, as well as the regulation of relations with Russia.

Meanwhile, the population of Georgia remains steadfast by the position's side. Georgians are generally optimistic, and optimism means hope for the future and Georgians dream and hope for a better future in both the political and economic spheres. As New Year’s Eve approaches, which is a real cause for celebration in Georgia, one may see people getting ready to welcome 2011. It is difficult to make a long term prognosis but on the short run the situation is stable, like the condition of a medical patient. Stable does not mean good and it does not mean bad it just means stable but nevertheless, there is always hope – let us hope for the best.