Why Abkhazians need independence?
31/05/2010 12:40
Irakli Tskitishvili

The Club of Experts often focuses on processes in Abkhazia, in particular, efforts of the Kremlin to restrict Abkhazian unauthorized actions as much as possible and establish its rules of game. We noted also that the change in the staff of generals of Abkhazian armed formations is only the first step towards their reduction and total subordination to Russian armed forces and law enforcement bodies. It was also noted that in the pursuit of virtual economic benefit Abkhazians are losing even that independence that they had prior to the expansion of the Kremlin at the expense of 20% of the territory of Georgia.

It was noted in the article "Russia may abolish the Abkhazian "army" that Russia has enough reasons for such steps. With increasing conflicts between Abkhazian armed formations and Russian soldiers amid growing dissatisfaction with lawlessness of Russians in Abkhazia, cases of lawlessness on the part of the occupation troops, redistribution of spheres of influence and different kinds of criminal business, and danger that such incidents might escalate into large-scale confrontation, Russia has every reason to fear Abkhazian "brothers" whom, incidentally, they never trusted. Freedom-loving Abkhazians will put up with the fact that Russian are cleaning out their house. Or will they? Were they fighting for this?

But first things first. Recently Abkhazian media started to discuss the above topics more frequently. So obviously they began to notice what we have repeatedly said and written about. Processes around Abkhazian law enforcement agencies do not leave inhabitants of the occupied territory indifferent, but they still do not look in the direction where the danger comes from and remain hypnotized by "independence".

An article "why do we need independence?" by Dzhydzh Sayer Gech was published in the Abkhazian Nuzhnaya newspaper (№ 17 May 11, 2010). Below comes this article with just minor changes:

"Why do we need our own border guards?

Last summer the parliament of the country having approved the agreement on protection of the border and, without knowing it, destroyed existing Abkhazian border divisions that somehow or other had been ensuring our security for a long time.

After the ratification of the document our border troops were subject to reduction and Russians border guards were placed on the border. And indeed why do we need our own border service?

Recently, a protocol was signed, a draft of which, we should note it, was developed by a group of Russian FSB workers. At the signing of the protocol Abkhazian group of experts was headed by head of staff of the border department of the Security Council of the Republic of Abkhazia Valery Chugunov. And for this fact not to be too offensive for Abkhazians the second secretary of the Abkhazian Embassy to Russia Madina Avidzba, who was completely irrelevant, participated in the consultations.

With this regard, we would like to note a press conference of April 29th of Sergei Bagapsh (...)

The president said that "during a recent visit to Abkhazia of leader Border department of the Russian FSB Vladimir Pronichev was reached an agreement according to which citizens of Abkhazia can serve in the border service of the Russian FSB". This means abolition of the Abkhazian border service and, hence, abolition of statehood. (...) But isn't it the end of our independence?! It turns out that all the efforts of President Ardzinba and our people have been in vain.

Sergei Bagapsh explains: "The fact that the border service of Russia is here is beneficial for us, and we should learn." I thought that for this purpose our border guards should have been sent to Russian educational institutions, instead of making them serve in Russian border troops. Otherwise it turns out that Sergei Bagapsh is weakening military potential of the country that has been built with such difficulty. A call on Abkhazian youth to "actively engage in the border agencies of Russia" is a direct attack on security of our country. Citizens of Abkhazia should not serve in the army of another state, if only because it is not stipulated by the Constitution.

Why do we need our own army?

Another issue that is related to the security of our country is reduction of time of service in the Abkhaz army.

Recently, Sergei Bagapsh has introduced into the Parliament draft amendments to the law on conscription which stipulates reduction of duration of military service. Amendments resulted from the recognition of independence of Abkhazia and conclusion of several agreements with the military bodies of Russia according to which "as a result of change of the balance of forces in the region reduction of the service term can be justified". What does this mean? Masters of our fates decided to shift their responsibilities onto others. In my opinion, this is also aimed at destruction of our armed forces. Moreover, after the draft information appeared that staff of the Ministry of Defense has undergone considerable reduction. Perhaps the reduction in the ranks of the Abkhaz generals is a right step. Probably some of them should have been sent to retirement long time ago. But there are certain questions with regards to this strange story answers to which we would like to hear. Minister of Defense tried to dispel gloomy fears of Abkhaz public (...) but it seems that there are serious contradiction between the Minister and the Commander-in-Chief with regards to the issue of preservation of the army. Though General Kishmaria does not want to reveal them. We have repeatedly heard the President of Abkhazia assuring that our country will not return into Georgia. Unfortunately, words alone are not enough. Deeds speak for themselves and they are leading us first to disarmament and then who knows where... We know, we've seen this...

Why do we need our own police?

Such issues that deserve attention are becoming more and more. For example, how should we regard the President's statement that "the Interior Ministry was ordered not to stop the cars with Russian number plates"? This is disrespect to one's own law enforcement agencies as well as discriminatory treatment towards one's citizens. Once we began to live by this principle, one might ask, why do we need the police? Let's make agreement with leadership of the Russian police as well and call on Abkhaz youth to go to serve in the Russian police. All the more that once such call has already been voiced. Workers of law enforcement agencies need practice, don't they? So then let Russian policemen protect Russian tourists!

And how can one explain, for example, that the extended cabinet meeting on the issues of preparation to upcoming holiday season that was headed by President Sergei Bagapsh along with members of the Abkhaz government was attended by representatives of number of Russian government agencies. It seems that Abkhazia has already subordinated to itself some of Russian government bodies, hasn't it? Now it seems that no meeting will be held without representatives of Russia otherwise who would give us valuable guidance? It seems that state of Abkhazia is no longer there, but there is some entity around which ambiguous game is being played. But we continue to live in some kind of hypnotic state. Wake up, people, hypnosis cannot last forever. And, unfortunately, moments leading up to derogation of our statehood are becoming more and more. What it can lead to is unknown. What if tomorrow we will be told that our land is not our land and we are nobody? "

That's what kind of "call of the heart" was published in the Abkhaz newspaper "Nuzhnaya." We add to this other publications that talk about imminent loss of the Abkhazian language. Somehow Abkhazian diaspora in Turkey are more concerned with this issue while there is a lot of talk but no action in Abkhazia itself. Meanwhile, the Russian language is completely driving out Abkhazian language knowledge of which is mandatory only for the candidate for "president".

We should remind that a meeting of the Federation of Abkhaz cultural centers of Turkey took place in the city of Düzce (Turkey). The main goal of the Federation is to save the native language as well as development of national culture, expansion of relations and cooperation with compatriots in the homeland. Interestingly these problems were not there while Abkhazians were with Georgia.

Some issues from the article Dzhydzh Sayer Gech are surprising. For example, "We have repeatedly heard the President of Abkhazia assuring that our country will not return into Georgia. Unfortunately, words alone are not enough. Deeds speak for themselves and they are leading us first to disarmament and then who knows... We know, we've seen this..."

Unfortunately, Mr. Dzhydzh is not looking where necessary as a threat of destruction of Abkhazians is already hanging as a "sword of Damocles" in the form of Russian boot. We should note that it is meaningless to blame Georgia in this case. Who is disarming you? Bagapsh? Why? To get you back into Georgia? As Russian Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov would have said - "nonsense". You are really mesmerized by your hatred towards Georgians who fed you for centuries. But sometimes one should open one's eyes to see reality. Bagapsh is a protege of the Kremlin troops of which are trampling our common land, and reduction of your armed forces only serves strengthening of the Russian boot on this blessed land. Why do Russians need "Abkhazian army" on the land that they believe is theirs? Do they need armed men outside their control who could offer resistance for various reasons, as it was, for example, several times in the Gali district, when Russians expelled Abkhazians from their headquarters?

The second point is "And, unfortunately, moments leading up to derogation of our statehood are becoming more and more. What it can lead is unknown. What if tomorrow we will be told that our land is not our land and we are nobody? " Absolutely true. You never had and never will have any statehood. You just have a choice to live free in unified Georgia, to be slaves of the empire or die for your pseudo-independence without even understanding what you want. And you are asking a right question. To be sure you will be told that you are not needed there and you are nobodies. It was not for you that they shed their blood but for their imperial interests, for their cowardice in the face of NATO and global processes, for their fear of losing their status of a superpower. Not for you, dear Dzhydzh.

Here one might ask you. What were you fighting for? Why were you spilling blood of your relatives and friends - Georgians? To become vassals of Russians? So that Zhirinovsky could wash his boots in the Black Sea and the Abkhaz to be waiting on him? And finally, why do you need independence and from whom?

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