For most of 2012, I lived in Georgia, a former Soviet Republic of the USSR. I came to know the people, the culture, and the politics of that part of the world first-hand. In particular, I was there for the 2012 elections, a watershed moment for modern Georgian politics.
A little bit of background. Georgia won its independence in the 90s during the fall of the Soviet Union, and immediately fell itself into a civil war. Three regions broke off: Adjara in the south, South Ossetia in the north, and Abkhazia in the northwest. It was a very difficult time, where the national army was little more than a deputized gang of thugs.
When the chaos settled down, the man in charge was Eduard Shevardnadze, a former high-ranking member of the Soviet Politburo. If you had to compare it to something, it would be like the United States falling apart and George W. Bush taking over Texas. An old establishment politician from a dynastic family returning to his newly independent home country to head it during troubled times.
But then, in 2005, something interesting happened: a “color revolution” broke out. George Soros, members and allies of the Bush Administration, and other foreign actors began to stir up protests in Tbilisi against Shevardnadze’s government. The tensions culminated with Mikheil Saakashvili and other agitators storming parliament with roses in their hands, taking over the podium and forcing Shevardnadze to flee with his bodyguards. He later resigned, and Saakashvili ran unopposed in the following election. He won by 96.2%.
It was political theater of the highest order, accomplished by collusion with a meddling foreign power. Once Saakashvili was in charge, Georgian foreign policy took a hard turn towards the West, causing massive tensions with Russia that culminated in the 2008 Russo-Georgian War.
This was a very bad move. Georgia is basically the Mexico of Russia; the two countries are closely linked both culturally and economically, with a large volume of remittances flowing from expatriots in Russia back to their families in Georgia. By turning so sharply to the West—not to mention, starting an actual war—Saakashvili did his people a great disservice.
Fast forward to 2012. I was teaching English in a village called Rokhi, about half an hour south of Kutaisi. I knew the basic outlines of this history, but very few of the specifics. The people were generally friendly to Americans, but they were very quiet about politics, at least to me.
Then the elections happened, and against all odds the Georgian Dream party completely overthrew Saakashvili’s ruling party in the parliament. Politicians started fleeing across the border into Turkey. Those who didn’t flee were arrested, sometimes on spurious charges, sometimes on legitimate ones. The courts became weaponized in a political struggle between Saakashvili and the Georgian Dream. It wasn’t a transfer of power so much as an ongoing coup.
All of a sudden, people starting speaking up and telling me what they really thought. While Saakashvili was in power, people were always careful around me because they assumed (since I was an American) that I was some sort of spy. But when the Georgian Dream Party took over, people felt it was safe to share their true feelings about how much they hated this guy who had taken over their country and driven it into the ground.
This is what foreign collusion and meddling looks like. America does it all the time. There’s a saying in the former Eastern Bloc that goes something like this:
“Why has there never been a color revolution in the United States?”
“Because there is no US embassy in the United States!”
Except now, I’m not so sure. Because the hyperbolic media response to the latest mass shooting in Florida shares some very disturbing similarities with a color revolution, and it frankly scares the hell out of me.
Take the CNN town hall that happened earlier this week. That wasn’t democracy in action, or even journalism. It was political theater, pure and simple. It was a political witch hunt and full-on push for gun confiscation.
A lot of things about the Florida shooting don’t add up. The alleged gunman managed to slip away with the fleeing students, instead of getting killed by law enforcement on the scene as is the pattern with most mass shootings. The FBI knew about this kid, had a file on him, knew what he was planning, and did nothing—absolutely nothing—to stop him. His classmates just happen to be pro-gun control activists, and they just happen to put together this massive national children’s crusade literally before the funerals for all the victims have been held.
Look, I’m not saying the kids are crisis actors. I’m not saying that what they went through isn’t absolutely horrific, or that they don’t have a right to feel the way that they do. What I’m saying is that the politicization of this shooting is massively suspicious and full of red flags.
Consider the three major mass shootings that happened last year, and the differences in the media’s response to each of them.
The first was the Congressional baseball shooting in June. A Bernie Sanders supporter tried to assassinate most of the Republican caucus by hunting them down at a baseball practice. It was deliberate, it was planned, and it very nearly threw this country into a major political crisis.
Within a week, the major news outlets were no longer covering the story.
The Las Vegas shooting was next, in October. A horrible tragedy and watershed moment for mass shootings in America. And yet, after all these months, there are so many unanswered questions. Where are the Casino tapes? Why haven’t we seen them? What was the involvement of the shooter’s girlfriend? Who is the other person of interest that the FBI hasn’t revealed? Was there a second shooter? What about all of the problems with the timeline?
None of these questions have gotten much airplay outside of alternative media. Also, the fact that the shooter was on mood-altering drugs hasn’t factored into the public debate nearly as much as the guns that he used—or didn’t. We don’t really know.
A month later, in November, we had the Sutherland Springs church shooting. The shooter was stopped by a bystander with a gun. A classic example of how the right to bear arms protects and makes us safer.
Once again, the mainstream media buried the story within a week.
Now we have the Florida shooting, with its own set of details that don’t quite add up. Far from burying the story, the mainstream media has blown it up to eleven, with nonstop political theater, witch hunts, appeals to emotion, and above all else, unyielding demands for a total confiscation and ban on all guns.
Who benefits from the politicization of mass shootings? The people who want to destroy the right to bear arms. Who is that? No one so much as the people who want to sow chaos in this country.
If the feds attempted a total gun confiscation, it would spark a second American civil war. Russia would benefit greatly from this. And if the confiscation were ultimately successful, it would leave us that much more vulnerable to a foreign takeover in the style of a color revolution.
This is the stuff of political thrillers, and it’s happening in realtime before our very eyes.
Who’s behind this? I don’t know. I have my suspicions, but I cannot yet say anything with any degree of certainty. But because certain factions benefit from the politicization of these mass shootings, I believe they will continue, and will probably increase in frequency.
We hear of wars in far countries, and say that there will soon be great wars in far countries, but do we know the hearts of the people in our own land?
If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear.