Alexander (Kaha) Lomaia

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Ambassador Alexander Lomaia served as Permanent Representative of Georgia to the UN from 2009-2013. Before assuming this posting, he was Secretary of the National Security Council of Georgia. His government service also includes four years as Minister of Education and Science. Previously, Mr. Lomaia had an extensive career in the non-governmental sector, serving as executive director of Open Society Georgia Foundation, as regional director of the Democracy Coalition Project, and as Georgia country director for the US-based Eurasia Foundation. Mr. Lomaia holds a Ph.D. in hydropower engineering from Moscow Construction Engineering Institute and a master’s degree in engineering from Georgian Technical University.

Articles

A Pyrrhic Victory

We have put one more election behind us, the country has a new president and a new (old) government, but the election cycle is not over yet. Local elections are looming in the spring. To better understand what we may expect from the upcoming elections, let us carefully look at the outcomes of the presidential election.What are the main takeaways for both the ruling coalition as well as the major opposition party?The Georgian Dream coalition won by a landslide. Its candidate, Giorgi...

Vladimir’s Golden Fish. The Sequel

Readers of Tabula may remember the fascinating story of Vladimir's fishing trip, during which, according to eyewitnesses, he caught a speaking golden fish. The fish (following the conventions of fairytales) proceeded to offer to fulfill Vladimir's wishes in return for being set free. Reportedly Vladimir made this deal last autumn. Last spring I recounted the first part of the deal. I promised back then that I would try my best to explore other elements of the deal and recount the rest of...

Silenced Canaries

In the article "Keeping An Eye on Canaries in the Coal Mine" published last year, I offered readers a system of indicators designed to better analyze Georgia's foreign policy positions. The article provided a list of key directions and projects which, in essence, determine Georgia's place in the region and the world. These directions and projects were broken down into two groups. The issues falling under the first group, "what must be continued," were those that served the advancement of our...

The Plasticine Foreign Policy

The presidential candidate of the Georgian Dream coalition, Giorgi Margvelashvili, has reportedly branded himself a "plasticine man." By this, Mr. Margvelashvili seems to have wanted to create the impression that he can adapt to different circumstances and people. Critics, however, see in him a lack of personal vision and an inclination to adjust to others' initiatives and tastes. On the last Sunday of October we will learn how voters will respond to the "plasticine" image of the presidential...

From Tahrir to Freedom

It is far from Cairo's Tahrir Square to Tbilisi's Freedom Square, about 2,000 kilometers. The distance between the existing political realities in Egypt and Georgia, however, may be shorter than the Georgian government thinks. Analyzing the Egyptian crisis and drawing conclusions from it may prove beneficial for both the Georgian government and the opposition, as well as for anyone interested in keeping up the democratic political process in Georgia.What has led to the ousting of the...

Vladimir’s Golden Fish

"We are again coming to face that ironic dilemma which tortured us throughout the 1990s when the only thing we were trying to guess was whether our government played into the hands of Russia merely because of its total incompetence or because it served Russia conscientiously."Zaza Bibilashvili's blog "Forgotten Dilemma" published on Tabula's Georgian webpageHe had been holding a fishing rod, standing on an erected deck jutting out over an open lake for two hours but his fishing net was still...

The Fifth Column or Party Number Five

A "fifth column" normally denotes a group of people who, acting overtly or covertly, attempt to undermine a nation's solidarity from within. Emilio Mola Vidal, a Nationalist general during the Spanish Civil War (1936-39), originally coined the term. As four of his army columns moved on Madrid, the general referred to his militant supporters within the capital as his "fifth column." The methods the fifth column applies in its activities include infiltration into the societal fabric, especially...

Transcaucasian Federation

No matter how often Russia repeats that it has sorted out its problems with Georgia, it will still be unable to ignore three key factors. The first is Russia’s military presence in Georgia’s regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali, which is regarded as illegitimate by almost everyone in the world and is labeled as an occupation by the most important actors. The second is the humiliating collapse of its efforts to have these regions recognized as independent states, despite the huge amount of...

'Revenge in Yerevan'

Longtime football fans may remember the article with this headline published in the Georgian sports daily Lelo on 15 September 1971. The article was reporting the result of a significant Soviet Top Leagu football match of the previous day between Dinamo Tbilisi and Ararat Yerevan that took place in the capital of Armenia. The game’s only goal, scored by Manuchar Machaidze of Dinamo Tbilisi, came as a disappointment to the 70,000 Armenian fans gathered at the newly-opened Hrazdan Stadium. Ararat...

1993 or 1921?

“That Georgia has started sliding back is clear,” one of my East European friends told me the other day, “but it is yet to be seen whether you will backslide to 1993, when you found yourself in the Commonwealth of Independent States, or further back to 1921, when you were incorporated in Russia.” I hope my friend was wrong and that our choice is not limited to...

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