Country Listing

Georgia Table of Contents


Long-Term Security

In late 1993, the primary consideration of Georgian national security continued to be the prevention of territorial gains by separatist national movements--a cause for which Russian military assistance was proving indispensable. Longer-term national security, however, would depend on Shevardnadze's ability to reestablish the structures of a viable, unified state: internal and international commercial activity, undisputed sovereignty over the national territory and its populace, and a shift back to government rule by statute rather than by emergency executive powers. In early 1994, all those preconditions remained in doubt, and Shevardnadze's reluctant resort to Russian military assistance had set a precedent with unknown national security consequences.

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For background on Georgian history, the best basic source is Ronald G. Suny's The Making of the Georgian Nation. Earlier histories on the Georgian people were written by David Marshall Lang (A Modern History of Soviet Georgia and The Georgians) and Kalistrat Salia (History of the Georgian Nation). Several scholars have followed contemporary Georgian developments on a regular basis; in addition to the present author, they include Elizabeth Fuller, a writer for the RFE/RL Research Report; Stephen Jones, whose journal articles cover political and nationalist issues in the Caucasus; and Robert Parsons of the British Broadcasting Corporation. Human rights issues in Georgia are covered extensively in publications of the United States Congress's Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe. Useful articles from Russian-language sources are translated in the Foreign Broadcast Information Service's Daily Report: Soviet Union (more recently titled Daily Report: Central Eurasia). Studies of Georgian culture and history appear occasionally in the Journal for the Study of Caucasia. (For further information and complete citations, see Bibliography.)

Data as of March 1994