Georgian Tank Expected at Military Parade
24 May, 2012
Georgian Tank Expected at Military Parade

Kutaisi, the second largest city of Georgia, located in the western part of the country, will soon witness a large-scale military parade dedicated to the Day of Independence. The event will be held in front of the newly built parliamentary building and - after a long break - will show the home-made military machinery.

Military parades in Georgia stopped in May 1998 when the parade-tuned Georgian troops and military machines were suddenly whooshed to Zugdidi instead of sending them to Rustaveli Avenue following the Gali events.
The new Authorities that came on the waves of the Rose Revolution in 2004 resuscitated the tradition of military parades by holding it in the big way in front of the monument of 300 Aragveli warriors in Ortachala district of the capital. That parade involved crawler tanks and infantry military machines. In fact, the asphalt cover sustained severe damage from these super heavyweight machines. Consequently, the Authorities did not run parades of the following years on Rustaveli Avenue to save the latter from asphalt killer tanks. This time the Authorities decided to hold the parade away of Tbilisi as well, namely, in Kutaisi, in front of the new parliamentary building. They will try to make it grand and impressive. It is planned that the Georgian Army will demonstrate military machinery assembled in Georgia. Probably, it will be Lazika infantry armed vehicles, as well as Grad-Kraz mass fire reactive systems and drones made in Tbilisi. As for the Didgori military vehicle, it was already presented during the 26 May parade last year on Rustaveli Avenue in Tbilisi. Now it should not be ruled out that new modifications of Didgori or other armored vehicles will turn up on Kutaisi streets. Certainly, the biggest news would break if the Authorities present a new Georgian tank, a modernized version of Soviet T-72 tucked with a number of novelties. Unlike Lazika, Grad-Kraz and drones, which were first presented on a polygon and attended by the Georgian President, it is thought that the new Georgian tank is reserved for the forthcoming parade as its first time demonstration (just like Didgori vehicles last year).
Preparations for the parade are underway on the territory of Senaki military base, while the final rehearsal will be held in Kutaisi. In addition to treaded military vehicles, the forthcoming parade is likely to feature Spyder anti-aircraft missile Systems and their Mobile controls. These Spyders bought from Israel did a

decent job in the August war. Interestingly, in the run-up to the 26 May, 2011 parade, the Spyders rolled out on Rustaveli Avenue for the night time rehearsal but for some reasons failed to show up at the parade itself.
Kutaisi military parade on 26 May will demonstrate how broad is the extent of Georgian military overhaul that has been underway for the last four years since the August 2008 war and indicate the priorities that Georgia has set for the development of its armed forces.