Causes and Consequences (Part Four)
17 March, 2011
Causes and Consequences (Part Four)

The communists operated a very well organized service of gossip-mongering, calumny and libeling. They let the rumor circulate that Stalin had punished Orjonikidze for ceding Sochi to Russia. Professor Simon Maskharashvili has more.
GJ – How about Sergo Orjonokidze? Was he not reminded that he had ceded Sochi to Russia?
SM – Practically the same thing had happened in case of Orjonikidze. First, his brother was executed. Generally speaking, the communists operated a very well organized service of gossip-mongering, calumny

and libeling. They let the rumor circulate that Stalin had punished Orjonikidze for ceding Sochi to Russia. They let the rumor circulate that Stalin had punished Orjonikdze for ceding Sochi to Russia. There was a stray word about Stalin having said to Sergo Orjonikidze: ‘You could just as well have given Goresha (Sergo’s native village in west Georgia) to Russia’.
GJ – Frankly speaking, I don’t know for sure up until now whether this act (ceding of the Georgian city of Sochi to Russia), which is tantamount to treason, was committed by Sergo Orjonikidze or not. Where is the truth?
SM – This is not true of course. Let’s peruse the text of the May of 1920 Russian-Georgian Treaty to see clearly that the Russian-Georgian border was demarked along River Psou. The only disputed spot was a tiny territory of Pilenkovo. When Sergo Orjonikidze was the South Caucasus communist party boss, it was decided to leave that territory within the boundaries of Georgia. Sergo not only had not ceded anything to Russia, but it was once again confirmed during his leadership that all those lands belonged to Georgia. He made it sure that it was genuinely part of the Georgian territory.  
GJ – How about Sochi? Isn’t it genuinely the Georgian territory?
SM – When in 1921 the League of Nations recognized the independence of Georgia and its state borders, Sochi was no longer within the Georgian boundaries. 
GJ – How come?
SM – Sochi was ceded to Russia by Georgia’s Menshevik government of Zhordania. And this was done regardless Georgia’s victory in the Russian-Georgian military conflict. The rumor about Orjonikidze’s treason was spread in Stalin’s time. Our people have exactly the same information about the situation as you. This was the worst case of discrimination against a human being. So Orjonikidze ‘sold’ the Georgian lands, and Stalin was a ‘great’ guy! Stalin had avenged the ‘seller’ of Georgian lands. This was the story. If Stalin was such a big fan of Georgia, why did he not return Sochi to Georgia? He had enough power to have done this.
GJ – It certainly was in his hands, wasn’t it? Nobody would have uttered a word!
SM – Unfortunately, people have short memory, especially when a powerful propaganda machine is operative in the country to wash their brains. Here is the picture which was painted as a result of all the Stalinist farce: Philipeh Makharadze was stigmatized as the assassin of Ilia Chavchavadze. Stalin was appreciated as Ilia’s glorifier, and accordingly, the venerator of his legacy. Sergo Orjonikidze was named as the seller and squanderer of Georgia’s lands, and Stalin was lionized as the punisher of the traitor. When Stalin wanted to eliminate his enemies, he would call himself anything he wanted – a patriot, or a worshiper of ancestors. In 1930’s he staged a huge anniversary of Shora Rustaveli, the great Georgian epic writer – author of the famous ‘The Knight in the Panter’s Skin’. Meanwhile, he used to execute the people who lived and dreamed of the Rustaveli’s humanistic ideals.

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