Georgian dilemmas. Between a strong state and democracy
Since its 'Rose Revolution' of 2003, Georgia has become the most spectacular example in the CIS of the export of a Western economic policy model: an example of success in building up efficient state structures, a state which was not broken by losing a war with Russia, and which still retains strong ties with the West. The strength of the Georgian state lies in its very determined ruling elite, which, thanks to considerable help from the US and the EU, has in a very short time completely reformed the state. At the same time, however, the merging of the political elite with the state, and the personalisation of state institutions, have created a series of problems.
Georgia expects parliamentary elections in October this year and presidential elections in 2013. These elections will be a multidimensional test of the state that has been built up over the last decade: of its stability, the state of its ruling elite, and the political maturity of its public. Despite the complex international situation, including an openly hostile attitude from Russia and the West's diminished interest in Georgia since 2008, its course and outcome will depend above all on the Georgian people themselves.