Provocation – Tiny Spark to Start Big Fire
27 October, 2011
Provocation – Tiny Spark to Start Big Fire

The state security servicemen could easily have kept Gamsakhurdia away from the stadium if they wanted to. They could just as well have denied him access to microphone. Instead, he was admitted to the stadium, he received access to microphone and was given a chance to make appearance. Professor Simon Maskharashvili has more.

GJ – In 1989 the situation in Apkhazeti (Abkhazia) became utterly strained. In the village of Likhni, the so called public assembly of the Apkhaz elders came forward

with nationalistically charged slogans, which seriously irritated the leaders of Georgia’s national-liberation movement. Those were the leaders who enjoyed support across the board in the country. The slightest provocation was enough to let the situation go explosive. Is this an accurate description?

SM – I would say so! Again, provoked by the KGB agent, a small Apkhaz youngster picked up a rock and threw it right into the bus which was making a trip from Tbilisi to Sochi. The stone smashed the windowpane, some passenger’s head was broken and somebody got scared . . . The incident was momentarily reported to Tbilisi. The date was the 4th of April of 1989 – just five days shy of the tragic April 9. As soon as the information about the incident reached Georgia’s capital city, we the students of Tbilisi State University organized a rally at the University to express our protest in this connection. At the same time, the Tbilisi National Stadium was hosting a football match between the ‘Zenith’ of Leningrad and Tbilisi ‘Dynamo’. There were 30 thousand viewers at the stadium then.

GJ – I remember the day very well. We the students of Tbilisi State were rallied in the University yard, waiting for the decisions, made by the leaders of national-liberation movement. But this must have been not the only politically-charged crowd that day in Tbilisi . . .

SM – True! Part of the Georgian intelligentsia (intellectual part of the society) started moving towards the Cinema-House downtown Tbilisi. One of the leaders of national-liberation movement Zurab Chavchavadze went into an individual hunger-strike in front of the government building. At that moment Zviad Gamsakhurdia approached the crowd of the University yard and said he was ready to bring the 30 thousand people from the national stadium to join them if he was given the support of the entire national-liberation movement. Akaki (Kako) Bakradze, one of the leaders of the intelligentsia had a national flag of Georgia stored in his private office. He went in, brought out the flag and handed it over to Gamsakhurdia. It has to be noted that the state security servicemen could easily have kept Gamsakhurdia away from the stadium if they wanted to. They could just as well have denied him access to microphone. Instead, he was admitted to the stadium, he received access to microphone and was given a chance to make appearance. Gamsakhurdia applied to the people at the Stadium to move together towards the government building (today’s house of parliament) in the Rustaveli Avenue and suggested that they all sit in protest in front of the building.

GJ – The protest was voiced most loudly when the crowd heard that Apkhazeti (Abkhazia) was demanding secession from Georgia. This was so painful for Georgians to hear that the protesting crowd became furious . . .

SM – That the Apkhaz wanted to secede from Georgia was said many times before, so this was not unexpected news for Georgians. The protesting demonstration and the excitement of the public were instigated by the incident of the 4th of April of 1989 in Apkhazeti. Having succumbed to Gamsakhurdia’s call, the huge crowd of people started moving without any delay from the Stadium towards downtown. Unwittingly but united with a magic power of unity, people were poised to defend what they knew was part of a deeply national interest of Georgia.

GJ – On its way to destination, the crowd was getting even stronger. People in the street were spontaneously joining in to make the protest even louder. A totally new political mindset was in making, wasn’t it?

SM – Not as much new as it was revived, woken and refreshed . . . Finally, all of us were rallied in the Rustaveli Avenue, the famous place for all public events. The leaders of the national-liberation movement were gathered in the Cinema-House where hot discussions became even hotter. Further steps were worked out and planned.

Print
Other Stories
International Festival of classical music to be held in Batumi
At the end of this week an International Festival of classic music will kick off for the 6th time in Batumi, Georgia’s beautiful seaside city.
Georgians who beat the world record
There are many Georgians among the world recordsmen. Georgians managed to beat the world record for 78 times to date. Today we explore four of them.
Jenny Brunt speaks about Georgia with Georgian Journal
Jenny Brunt is among the most famous models worldwide. She used to be on the covers of different international magazines in the 1990s.
Tako Natsvlishvili wearing Pain de Sucre - photographed by David Bellemere
Tako Natsvlishvili is a 19-yeal old model from Georgia. She has recently been photographed by a prominent French photographer David Bellemere.
Former Georgian plastic surgeon who owns a restaurant in New York
Maia Acquaviva is a Georgian former surgeon, who worked in one of the clinics here in Tbilisi, but decided to go to the USA and start a business there.
David Beckham first saw Victoria Adams in Tbilisi
Tbilisi is truly a magical city. It brings many people and cultures together, even connects future spouses. Do you think we are joking? Not at all.
Georgia should be at the top of every travel destination list – says German photographer about Georgia
The German Chancellor Angela Merkel visits Georgia tomorrow and possibly as a result of this visit the German media is currently writing a lot about Georgia.
Alexander Julakidze - Georgian pianist based in Jerusalem
A well-known Georgian pianist Alexander Julakidze has successfully participated in a variety of piano competitions. He currently lives in Jerusalem, Israel contributing to Georgia’s popularity all over the world.
Anna Kendrick in David Koma’s dress
The readers of the Georgian Journal will definitely have heard about David Koma, a young and talented Georgian designer based in London.
Medical tourism increases in Georgia
In the first quarter of 2018, Georgia was visited by 13 900 foreigners for medical and recovery purposes. The level is 61.2 % higher than the same period in 2017.
Rebellious and successful Georgian model based in Barcelona
Remember we told you a story this week about a Georgian model Paloma Anastasia Mikadze, who currently is based in Barcelona and is quite successful there?
Georgian Rubik’s Cube solver Vako Marchilashvili breaks the Guinness World Record
Vako Marchilashvili is a young Rubik’s Cube solver from Georgia. He participated in “Georgia’s Got Talent 2017 “and introduced his genius abilities to the Georgian public.
Turkish born Georgian sisters sing a beautiful song
There are many Georgians, who live in Turkey, but maintain Georgian culture and heritage.
What types of transport can Georgia offer tourists?
Train, subway, bus, mini-bus, taxi and airplane – these are the types of transport that Georgia can offer tourists.
Chris Botti to perform in Georgia
American trumpeter Chris Botti arrived in Georgia yesterday. Today the musician is due to perform with the Georgian singer Nani Bregvadze.
Georgian schoolchildren create Robot “Vano”
Georgian students from the Guivy Zaldastanishvili American Academy in Tbilisi have created a robot named Vano.
Khatia Buniatishvili performs with the Estonian Festival Orchestra at the Proms in London
On the 13th of August, Paavo Järvi and the Estonian Festival Orchestra performed at the Royal Albert Hall in London during its famous Proms season.
Paloma Anastasia Mikadze, an Instagram star from Georgia
Anastasia Mikadze is a Georgian social network star from Georgia. She shares her ideas about fashion, interior design and healthy lifestyle with hundreds of followers on Instagram.
Georgian lifeguard who saved life of nearly 700 people
Gocha Bilvanidze, the Head of the Maritime Rescue Service has been with the organization for eight years now. He has saved the lives of around 700 people during that time.
Children of Georgian migrant to the USA Parten Chikviladze (Peter Chiglo) visit Georgia
A 16-year Parten Chikviladze from Racha (the western part of Georgia) left Georgian 1913 for America, never to return back.
 Surprising proposal by a Georgian Soldier
The video of a Georgian Cadet Soldier’s proposal to his girlfriend has gone viral on the social media. He proposed to her in the presence of other soldiers in front of the Academy.
The 10th anniversary of the 2008 war through a young graphic designer’s eye
A 23-year old Nika Chalakhshasvhili is a graphic designer from Georgia. He has created some interesting illustrations to express his protest against the Russian occupation of Georgian territory:
Georgian policewomen: stereotypes and reality
The number of female members in the Security Forces is increasing year after year.
Georgian entrant who got top marks in two subjects
Devi Oniani is a graduate of the 55th Public School, Tbilisi, Georgia.
What is behind the collection “Family and War” by Demna Gvasalia
A Georgian fashion designer, the Creative Director of Balenciaga and Head Designer at Vetements, presented a collection named “Family and War” during Paris Fashion Week.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Exchange Rates
GEL Exchange Rate
Convertor
21.09.2018
22.09.2018
USD
1
USD
2.6193
2.6216
EUR
1
EUR
3.0693
3.0854
GBP
1
GBP
3.4651
3.4584
RUB
100
RUB
3.9538
3.9340
Other Stories
World famous British singer Jessie J has decided to wear clothes made by Anouki Areshidze, Georgian designer and wife of the mayor of Tbilisi.
Bassiani, one of the most popular underground clubs not only in Georgia but throughout Europe as well, has opened today
An amazing video made in Georgia by tourists from the Philippines have gone viral on the internet.
Over the recent two days May 12-13 Tbilisi city saw a peaceful protest rally in the center of the city.
Hundreds of people took to the main street Rustaveli Avenue in Tbilisi to protest the raid in Tbilisi’s popular night clubs.
Two bear cubs listed as endangered on the red list were handed over to Tbilisi Zoo,
Tbilisi Mayor Kakha Kaladze and Deputy Tbilisi Mayor Ms. Sophio Khuntsaria have gifted a food stand
Pamela Anderson, famous Canadian American actress and model has appeared in the chic sunglasses by internationally acclaimed Georgian designer George Keburia.
A ski lift accident in Georgia’s eastern Gudauri resort,in particular at Sadzele 5 lift, has left 8 people with injuries.
The ski lift in Gudauri winter resort in Georgia has broke down in the aftermath of which several people have been injured.
GEL Exchange
USD
1
USD
2.6216
EUR
1
EUR
3.0854
GBP
1
GBP
3.4584
RUB
100
RUB
3.9340