20 years later
26 September, 2013
20 years later
The author of this article is a first-hand witness and participant of the exodus via Kodori that followed the Sokhumi’s capitulation. It was a hard journey via the mountain pass – “hard” because exhaustion disabled everyone from helping others.
On the way to Kodori, when I turned my head back near Gentsvishi, I saw a white circle in the sky over Sokhumi. Apparently, a Russian pilot of Su-27 did it to mark the victory in the conquest of the Georgian
town.
It was a defeat that no one could believe at the moment. We did not want to let the reality enter our minds. We gave words to each other that we would return to take the victory back. Years passed since then however. The hope used to dwindle and surge back intermittently. The August war in 2008 though killed it by the look of it.
So, what did we get on the twentieth anniversary of the Apkhazeti war? Russian border guards continue border wire fencing nudging the Georgian-Russian borders to Enguri and almost Gori. The August 2008 war and its dire consequences created not just territorial problems for Georgia but also psychological and moral issues. What shall we do? Swoop on the wire fences mounted by Russian border guards in Ditsi and Dvani in the night and dismantle them or hold a sit-in civil protest with hundreds of thousands of people in places where Russians have not installed wire fence yet? In fact, Russia does nothing new. It just keeps on laying border control lines around the separatist area of their recognition.
There is no way out whatsoever. You cannot use a weapon because a tiny excuse is enough for Moscow to resume military aggression, nor can you invest any hope in strategic partners like USA or Europe because for Kremlin functionaries their frustration looks no more than funny. In the same way, North Atlantic Alliance cannot help either. Why, many people, if not all, in the country lost hope in membership prospect.
So, what we have now? After twenty years of hardships we are still unaware where, why and how Georgia is heading?
Extinction of the hope for the future is perhaps the last nail in the coffin but general hopelessness is even worst thing to experience. So, the hope for the white circle over Sokhumi and Tskhinvali and for the return of Georgian refugees is the last thing to lose.

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