To spite Putin, come visit Georgia, – this is the title of an article published by CNN. In the opinions column, Will Cathcart calls on travelers to visit Georgia.
“Dear travelers, wine drinkers, hikers and beachgoers—Dear epicureans, romantics and historians—Dear anybody looking for an adventure or wanting to spite Russian President Vladimir Putin. The country of Georgia needs you. If you’ve ever considered visiting this small Black Sea nation nestled between Russia and Turkey, now is the time. For those of you who have already been, it is time to return”, – article reads.
As the author of the article says, the visit of a Russian politician caused large scale protests in Tbilisi. ” After protests in Tbilisi last week against a visit by a Russian politician—NOT against the Russian people, and I cannot emphasize that enough—Putin has issued a ban (starting July 8) on Russian airlines flying to Georgia. Meanwhile, the president of Russia’s Duma alluded to canceling visas, and a Russian consumer watchdog mentioned the possibility of restricting imports of Georgian wine, a major Georgian export to Russia.
In reaction to these #TbilisiProtests, Putin is trying to punish, subdue, and bankrupt the Georgian people for speaking truth to power, for exercising their right to assemble and for ultimately sacking their speaker of Parliament, who resigned after protesters demanded it.
Controversy arose after a Russian member of Parliament delivered a speech to Georgian parliamentarians in Russian. If Putin has his way, the Georgian economy will lose up to $300 million, according to one estimate cited by Russia’s state-run TASS news agency.
Why is Putin doing this? For two reasons: First, he is terrified that the Russian people will see protests in Georgia and do the same. ” – reads the article.
As the author notes, the Georgian problem with the Kremlin does not extend to the Russian people. “Russians are welcome here, just as they always have been. Russians soldiers in tanks are not”.