Der Silberfuchs der Diktatur und Demokratie

MOSKAU – Während seiner Jahre an der Macht hat sich Eduard Schewardnadse den Beinamen „Silberfuchs“ erworben. Ein Mann, dem scheinbar mühelos der Übergang vom Machthaber in der Sowjetrepublik Georgien und Mitglied im Politbüro des Kreml zum reformorientierten Außenminister Michail Gorbatschows gelang, bevor er nach dem Zerfall der Sowjetunion nach Georgien zurückkehrte und zum prowestlichen Präsidenten wurde, ironischerweise in Opposition zu Gorbatschow. Er betrachtete sich als Held, der Georgien aus der engen Umklammerung Russlands befreit hat. Er war auch einer der korruptesten Politiker, die sein Land je erlebt hat.

Gegen Ende seines Lebens war Schewardnadse zum politischen Paria in Georgien, im Westen und in Russland geworden, wo er als einer der Architekten der Auflösung der Sowjetunion galt. Doch auch wenn er nach der Rosenrevolution von 2003, als er von seinem einstigen Protegé Micheil Saakaschwili entmachtet wurde, weitgehend in Vergessenheit geraten war, gelang es ihm durch sein Geschick und seine Raffinesse beim Manipulieren politischer Kräfte sein Vermächtnis weiter zu seinem Vorteil zu nutzen.

Der stramm proamerikanische Saakaschwili leitete erfolgreiche Wirtschaftsreformen ein und ging umfassend gegen Polizeikorruption vor, obwohl auch ihm letzten Endes vorgeworfen wurde, Bestechungsgelder angenommen und autokratischen Impulsen nachgegeben zu haben. Nachdem er in der Revolte an die Macht gelangt war, die den korrupten Schewardnadse zu Fall brachte, griff er auf die gleichen Methoden sowjetischen Zuschnitts zurück – Einschüchterung und Diskreditierung von Gegnern, gewaltsames Vorgehen gehen Dissidenten –, um seine Kontrahenten in Schach zu halten.

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