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May 21 Decisive fight for Burjanadze

By Messenger Staff
Monday, May 23
The Georgian political establishment and the population as a whole were anticipating with great interest May 21, 2011. This date was announced as the beginning of the revolutionary process which would end in the change of the ruling administration. This was the initiative of the Public Assembly and its leading figure Nino Burjanadze. It is interesting that unlike previous attempts, today the change of the ruling forces is planned by one opposition party – not the entire opposition. However it should be said from the very beginning that if Burjanadze fails to perform this promised revolution, it will be a defeat not only for Burjanadze and her party but would also frustrate all political opponents: radicals, moderates, Parliamentary or non-parliamentary opposition.

The street action starting on May 21 is in fact the first of its kind since the three-month long protest rallies in 2009. Back then the majority of the opposition was united, however, eventually its progress was frustrated. So the result of these 2009 actions discredited the opposition movement as such and the ruling power was victorious. In 2009, the frustration of their dreams was not just an ordinary defeat but it was the crisis of the entire strategy. The slogan, which has been active in Georgia since and during the Rose Revolution “many people in the streets the ruling administration goes” failed. It appeared that Saakashvili and his team does not fit in this formula. The ruling administration did not use much force against the protesters. It did not raid the protesters’ camps but used only small attacks on the activists to show its power and to intimidate the protestors. As a result, the opposition members and first of all the people got tired, frustrated, disappointed, exhausted and the planned scenario failed. This spring there were two opposition forces promoting peaceful revolution – the Georgian Party with a group of leaders – Okruashvili, Kitsmarishvili, Subari, Gachechiladze, and Public Assembly, under Nino Burjanadze’s political leadership. Both of these forces want to drive Saakashvili out. However neither has specified exactly how this will be achieved.

The attempts of the Georgian Party started on May 9 and yielded no significant results at that point. The next move was taken by Nino Burjanadze. Burjanadze and her supporters claim that their efforts will be quick, but effective. She and her supporters also claim that on May 26 – Independence Day of Georgia - things will be different. She claims that her supporters will not conduct illegal actions, warning the participants of the rallies against any provocations.

But this is only one side of the scenario, where there is only pure enthusiasm, motivation and determination. But if administration does not go, and most probably it will not, is there another action plan? So far nobody from the any kind of opposition has openly discussed what should be done in case if events don't develop as desired. Burjanadze and her supporters are claiming that the ruling authorities, who are responsible for the events taking place in the country, lead everything towards revolution. If it takes place all the responsibility will lie with the ruling power. People are ready to defend their constitutional rights without arms, peacefully. It looks like there is serious precondition for civil confrontation. The ruling power thinks that there is a Russian element noticeable in the situation and the confrontation already appeared. Early in the morning of May 22, police forces attacked demonstrators in front of the Public Broadcaster TV station building, using rubber bullets. So the situation currently is very complicated as neither side is ready to make concessions. Meanwhile most of the remaining oppositional forces are limiting themselves only by verbal comments. There is no unity and of course the ruling force is making the most of the situation.

However some Georgian Party leaders already joined the protest actions late Sunday afternoon.