Misha has party congress, Gov defends Gazprom deal, Russia tries to extradite Georgian from Ukraine gov leaked info to Russia, Womens March Tbilisi, yikes Kobakhidze to Constitutional Court, new Nationals want to observe EPP, Vano leaves parties, Kordzaia number 2 in Republicans, PACE talks about media, EU program on EU, EBRD to go to 300 mil Euro, 34 villages to get shuki and gas, interest rates up 25, ISET on prices, bank deposit numbers, more PAULs, Aerosmith tickets, broadcasting law, court law veto by Margvel, Green faction, Lomsadze in Coda, Ebert on youth, DeWaal on Karabakh war, TI Corruption Perception Index out Georgia does great, 1st Republic book, Izoria in Scandinavia

One thought on “TBLPOD26jan2017

  1. The MEME this week is a hyperlapse video by Yury Velitchenko that covers different places around Georgia. It’s pretty amazing and has gotten about 38,000 views and 1,200 hundred shares on facebook.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2jt3WtW


    Giorgi Lomsadze writes for Coda Story about the Trump administration and how it will approach Russia. He advises people to focus on what Russian media are saying about Trump, especially the favorable coverage given by leading pro-Kremlin pundit Dmitry Kiselyov. The pundit portrays Trump as someone who can bridge the wholly-American-made divide between the two countries, and even speculated that the Women’s March in Washington is preparation for a Maidan against Trump.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2jt1X9m

    On the other side, EurasiaNet quotes several Russia experts who argue that Trumpism won’t be as good for Putin as many expect. The Kremlin could face hot water domestically if it no longer has a hostile America to scapegoat for the country’s problems. Plus, the hacking scandal has energized Russia hawks in the US Congress, who will frustrate Putin’s ambitions to create a new world order, regardless of what Trump thinks. On a more basic level, Putin will struggle to deal with The Donald’s outsized ego.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2jAh52k

    The Friedrich Ebert Stiftung publishes a study on the worries, aspirations, values, and lifestyles of Georgia’s youth. The study was conducted between May and June 2016 and focuses on the post-Soviet generation, people ages 14-29. The young generation views the family as the most trusted social institution. On the other hand, political indifference is high and trust in political institutions is low. Most people from the age group support EU and NATO accession while maintaining strong attachments to traditional Georgian culture and values, and the Georgian Orthodox Church.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2jisnXQ

    Tom De Waal has another great piece for Carnegie Europe, looking at the possibility that war will break again out over Nagorno-Karabakh in 2017. The picture doesn’t look good. The ceasefire arrangements reached in 1994 and 1995 look less sustainable and the line of contact separating Armenian and Azerbaijani-controlled territory is growing more militarized as we speak. Plus, Azerbaijan might be emboldened by the small territorial victory it won last year.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2j7LWqM

    The Guardian covers the ongoing court battle regarding punishments for those caught using or possessing marijuana. Back in October the Constitutional Court ruled that prison sentences for marijuana users were too harsh, and they effectively decriminalized possession for personal use. This week, the court will start considering whether prison sentences for those who grow marijuana are too harsh, as well.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2kwqXxR

    Transparency International publishes its Corruption Perceptions Index 2016. Georgia comes in 44th in the world with a score of 57, its highest score ever and five points better than its 2015 score. The highest possible score is 100. This year the countries perceived as the least corrupt were Denmark and New Zealand with a score of 90, and perceived as the most corrupt was Somalia with a score of 10. The median was 43, so the global picture doesn’t look very good.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2kwrgJ2

    Also about the Transparency International study, Radio Free Europe-Radio Liberty has an infographic isolating the scores for each post-Soviet country. Georgia is third behind Estonia and Lithuania, and Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan are last.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2jt2OXn

    Lia Satenstein writing for Vogue covers some of Georgia’s coolest and weirdest architecture, including Deda Kartli, the Peace Bridge, the Ministry of Interior Building, and some other favorites.
    Link: http://bit.ly/2jUReCY

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