Freaky Centrist ad, Russia exercises in S Ossetia, Abkhaz deputy PM resigns, storm out west, Bosnian FM, Melua in Gori, Free Dems say decriminalize drugs, garbage to Narmania, Okruashvili runs in Gori, sportsmen for Otsneba in Tbilisi, Burchaladzes team says pressured, Abkhaz abducts guys fishing and swimming, US hiker stabbing, soldiers drowns, Gulen guy eats in Tbilisi, remittences up, FDI down, new terminal, bakery in Kakheti, S Osetia has 53K they say, Olympic gold in weightlifting and wrestling, new lynx, dolphins

One thought on “TBLPOD18aug2016

  1. The MEME this week is a video about weightlifter Lasha Talakhadze, who won a gold medal and set a new world record in Rio. The video is by Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty. Talakhadze was supposed to be helped by the fact that Russia’s weightlifters are banned because of doping, but his world record means that he would have won the gold anyway.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2bzvJEB


    Andrew North writes in Foreign Affairs about the 2008 war and how its effects are still felt today. He argues that Georgia has long looked to the West for protection, and has always been disappointed. Still, Georgia has no option rather than to pursue the Western path.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2b2GMql

    Foreign Affairs also has an interesting piece on Azerbaijan’s geopolitical choice. The country is being wooed by Iran and Russia, and is looking for new partners because it’s unhappy with the US and EU, who are critical of the government’s human rights abuses. They’re also concerned about Islamist militancy and want to cooperate more with their neighbors on security.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2aXgBCQ

    Social Science in the Caucasus looks at internal migration in Georgia. Roughly half the population are internal migrants: meaning they were born in Georgia and now live in another settlement, still in Georgia. Women are much more likely to be internal migrants because they often move to live with their husbands after getting married.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2beA4hu

    Josh Kucera writes in EurasiaNet about the role of geopolitics in Georgia’s parliamentary election campaigns. He focuses on Nino Burjanadze’s push for official non-bloc status, and the recent ad by the Centrist Party that promised to legalize Russian military bases in Georgia. Kucera doesn’t think that pro-Russian or anti-NATO views are going to be popular at the ballot box, though.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2bp7qur

    Resident Advisor has a piece on Georgia’s growing rave culture. They rave–pun intended–about Bassiani, which they think is one of Tbilisi’s best night spots. Also getting attention is Mtkvarze, Cafe Gallery, and Didi Gallery. The point is that rave culture is proof that Western values are seeping into Georgia’s social fabric.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2b2R0E8

    Former NATO Supreme Allied Commander James Stavridis has an op-ed in Time Magazine where he calls for the US to make a grand bargain with Russia. Putin is reaching out to Washington about cooperating in Syria and ending the fighting in Ukraine, but that would involve recognizing Russia’s rule over Crimea and lifting the economic sanctions. He rejects making those concessions, but says the US should keep communication lines open and try to cooperate more on counterterrorism.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2b2GWhz

    Foreign Policy has a piece on the thaw between Putin and Erdogan. They think the relationship is still frostier than it looks, mostly because Turkey and Russia are at odds over Syria. Russia still blames Turkey for allowing terrorists and weapons to cross its border into Syria, and Turkey isn’t willing to accept any peace deal that allows Assad to stay in power, and they don’t want the Kurds to be part of peace talks.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2buxFNn

    Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty investigates the disturbing number of recent attacks on journalists in Ukraine. The Prosecutor General’s Office has logged 113 crimes against journalists so far this year, including physical attacks, damage to property, and obstruction of activities. Especially troubling is the murder of Pavel Sharemet, an investigative journalist who was killed in Kiev in July by a car bomb. The attackers are usually ultra-nationalists, and many people fear that freedom of speech is under attack.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2bkfn0P

    The Guardian has a piece on pop star Katie Melua, who is in Gori to record an album. She lived in Batumi until her family moved to Britain when she was 9 years old. She told the reporter that her grandfather was deported to the gulag by Stalin, and that coming back to Georgia brings up some bittersweet feelings.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2b68122

    The brilliant and provocative journalist Masha Gessen writes in the New York Times about the current state of things in Russia. She argues that the Soviet Union never ended, because the institutions that underpinned the Soviet regime–most importantly the KGB and the state-run media–weren’t dismantled, they just passed into the hands of Boris Yeltsin and now Vladimir Putin.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2bJWzwU

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *