What's Kiev's plan for Saakashvili in Odessa?


© Sputnik/ Nikolay Lazarenko

While analysts continue to discuss what Georgia's ex-President Mikheil Saakashvili's appointment as governor of Ukraine's Odessa region might actually mean to Ukraine, American bimonthly international affairs magazine The National Interest comes with its analysis of the "great friend of Ukraine" and his "Stanislavski school of governance."

US bimonthly international affairs magazine The National Interest came up with an analysis of Georgia's former President Saakashvili, wanted by his country's prosecutors for embezzlement, abuse of power and politically-motivated attacks.

The magazine bluntly analyzed his "knowledge, experience and unique know-how", as well as what his "school of governance" is all about and what it will mean to Ukraine.

"Saakashvili heroically fought corruption, dismissing the whole police force and building a new corps from scratch. The man who created an easy fire, easy hire environment (for foreign investors). And he tirelessly - some would argue even recklessly - fought Russia; not to win against Russia, but to be seen fighting. In many respects," the outlet says.

Not appearing to fail is the main secret
of what might be called the Stanislavski School of Governance, it states.

"Saakashvili did not lose the war with Russia in 2008; he defended the West! He did not lose the elections of 2012; he graciously conceded defeat! He did not run away from the rage of the people he had tortured; he was in "self-imposed" exile! He believed in rule of law, that is, for the rest of us. If it is a matter of perception, Saakashvili will perform; if he fails, make no mistake, it is Odessa that will have failed. A leader who is not prepared to assume the responsibility of his failures is dangerous, because he is ultimately reckless."

The worst insult of all, the magazine says, is that leading Kiev politicians appointed a person who is afraid to come home to face criminal charges--as the governor of an important region, with a large concentration of Russian speakers.

And then looks at the region's prospects:

"Does it [appointment] intend to outfit Saakashvili with a rubber stamp legislature, as he enjoyed in Georgia? Will he be authorized to conduct raids on opposition headquarters or take over opposition television and radio stations, as was his method of suppressing dissent in Georgia?"

"Will they accept his use of imprisonment, torture, confiscation of private property and even murder to build the sort of authoritarian state he constructed in Georgia?"

"And above all, does Ukraine wish a region with a large Russian-speaking minority to be governed by a person who had so often expressed his hatred for President Putin and the Russian Federation?"

If Saakashvili has really given up his Georgian citizenship, Tbilisi may even have reason to celebrate this sad mistake, but whether Ukrainians will is another matter, the magazine concludes.