The Rise and Fall of the Georgian Dictator: A Study of Zviad Gamsakhurdia's Presidency
Lewin, Adam J.
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With the breakup of the Soviet Union into fifteen independent republics, perhaps the single largest political problem for these republics is in the establishment of true democracy in states that have never been ruled by democratic regimes. This is epitomized by the events which took place in the Georgian republic in 1990 through early 1992. The popularly elected president, Zviad Gamsakhurdia, began ruling not as a democrat, but as an autocrat. He was able to consolidate power to the point where the only way to remove him from power was by force. This happened less than a year after he was overwhelmingly voted into the presidency. Gamsakhurdia was overthrown by a coalition of his opposition including many of his former cabinet members. By examining Zviad Gamsakhurdia's model of how not to govern in a democracy, perhaps it can serve as a warning to the other infant democracies of Eastern Europe as to what can happen when a popular nationalist is basically handed as much power as he desires.If you are not a current K College student, faculty, or staff member, email email@example.com to request access to this SIP.