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EXISTENT MILITARY THREATS AND CHALLENGES FOR GEORGIA’S DEFENCE SYSTEM AND THE SOCIETY STRATEGIC, SYSTEMIC, RESOURCE
EXISTENT MILITARY THREATS AND CHALLENGES FOR GEORGIA’S DEFENCE SYSTEM AND THE SOCIETY STRATEGIC, SYSTEMIC, RESOURCE

EXISTENT MILITARY THREATS AND CHALLENGES FOR GEORGIA’S DEFENCE SYSTEM AND THE SOCIETY

STRATEGIC, SYSTEMIC, RESOURCE AND INFORMATION ISSUES

Andro Barnovi

9/21/2010

This study is made possible by the support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents are the sole responsibility of GIPA, PMCG and the policy paper authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.

CONTENTS

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

2

FOREWORD

4

Georgia’s Security Environment

4

Domestic Social and Political Challenges

4

Conclusions from the recent past

5

Total defence system

5

Chapter 1: Georgia according to Defence Planner

7

PARAMETERS OF GEORGIA’S AGGREGATE POWER

8

Quantitative Parameters

8

Functional parameters

13

Information Parameters

25

Physical Parameters

28

Conclusion

30

Chapter 2: Security Environment and Military Risks

31

CURRENT AND POTENTIAL ADVERSARIES

31

Chapter 3: Georgian Armed Forces

34

Chapter 4: Current Doctrinal Base

36

Conclusion and Recommendations

38

REGULAR ARMY

38

TERRITORIAL FORCES

38

RESERVE FORCE

39

Professional Reserve

40

Territorial Reserve

40

CIVIL DEFENCE, EDUCATION AND SPORT

42

SPORT

43

Civil Education and Skills Development

43

Forms of encouragement

43

Civil Defence

44

Professional Education

44

RECRUITMENT OF CIVIL DEFENCE AND TERRITORIAL DEFENCE RESERVE

44

PERSPECTIVE PLAN TO BUILD THE RESERVE SYSTEM

45

Final words

47

Graphs and Tables

48

1

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

In a very complex security environment Georgia has to live through with an incomplete

statehood: the country undergoes significant internal changes and the process is characterized

with unsurprising social tensions.

The unipolar world of the post-cold war period and western orientation of Georgia were defining Georgia’s recent belief that international community would never allow Russia’s full-scale military aggression. However, the war of 2008 has proved that a far more effective defence concept and the relevant system are needed.

On July 28, 2010, during his visit at the Ministry of Defence, President M. Saakashvili spoke

of the need of a total defence system and the need to organize territorial forces. He also

stressed the special role of the reserve system.

A total defence system aims at ensuring the physical, civil, economic, social and

psychological security of the population. On the other hand, total defence implies amalgamation of all the resources of the society for the purpose of defence. This study looks

at Georgia’s demographic, informational, functional and physical parameters and resources to identify the challenges in all of these domains and hint to the ways of their solution stemming from the goal of building the total defence system.

Georgia has a small and aged population, which is ethnically diverse and loosely integrated. Common national identity is weak and mainly rests on the ethnic Georgian’s trust in common historic roots and shared language. A considerable part of the population is barely educated, while technical education is the lowest in the region; social capital is degraded; urbanization level is extremely low; 1/3 of the villages are small in size (under 500); and in rural areas some degree of power vacuum is observable; also, there are hardly the effective legitimate decision-making mechanisms in place in rural communities;

Georgia is last in the region by per capita national product; the second last by real GDP level; industry is underdeveloped and 90% of local economy is made of big factories, while the SMEs are much undeveloped. The country’s trade balance is negative; technology base poor; and natural resources of insignificant volumes. Despite the fact that Georgia is among

the fastest developing economies of the world and keeps realistic chances for development, it

is also clear that it will be extremely hard to withstand any protracted conflict in future.

This study recognizes Russia as Georgia’s single true enemy and does not make theoretic calculations toward other potential adversaries in future. The study looks at the characteristics of Georgia’s terrain to guess the future type of possible aggression and identify relevant defence model. Big and Small Caucasus Mountains and an Inter-Ridge Plain of the Caucasus seem to this study as defining aspects for the country’s defence posture. Such a terrain makes natural fortress of Georgia, and makes it relevant for partisan tactics. However, it is also clear that special social and physical infrastructure is needed to withstand any kind of high or low intensity conflicts in future.

For the regular army, it seems most likely challenge to halt the adversary near the border line and neutralize the aerial bombardments. The enemy may choose to continue gradual annexation of the country if they know the defenses are weak. By typology of action, it is expectable that enemy tries to:

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demoralize the population

demoralize the army

uses military force to trigger internal escalation

provides covert military assistance in case of civil war

Russia’s main goal in case of aggression will be to change the regime and bring to puppets to rule the country. This is defined as Moscow political goals not necessarily territorial vis- à-vis Georgia.

The most serious problem of Georgia’s defence planning is that still, there is a failure to fully consider one basic principle: that a small country like this cannot be relying on conventional capabilities. In a total defence system, which really is a fully plausible solution for Georgia, the reserve plays the decisive role.

The study proposes the setup of a reserve system with the division on professional, territorial and civil reserve forces to support the Professional Army, Territorial Army and Civil Defence system, respectively. At the same time, reserve is a decisive component for the Territorial Army.

It is proposed that along with some other very significant roles, the function of organizing the civil reserve is given to the Community Development Centers which may become central locus of business interaction between the society and the state.

The study makes some rough calculations regarding the timing, programming and financial sides of the proposed system.

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FOREWORD

The defence system is a vast issue, which makes us circumvent all small details when thinking of broad policy directions of the system. It is rather relevant to see the underlying causes which normally influence the formation of defence system, evaluate the relevance of the current one, single out key problems and hint to desired solutions.

Although a very large notion, the “defence system” is nonetheless narrower than the “security system”. The basis for defence system is the physical, informational and social infrastructure of defence, whereas the security system encompasses the full totality of formal and informal institutions. Whatever serves as factor for a defence system, is a policy issue for the security one. For instance, the level of education is a factor for any defence system, while it is a task to-be-solved for the security one, etc.

Unlike the said, total defence system contains all of military, civil, economic, social and psychological components and comes closer to the notion of security system by its scale. In any case, defence system is a most important component of the security system.

GEORGIA’S SECURITY ENVIRONMENT

Georgia’s security has been breached: territories are occupied; officials from the neighboring nuclear state threaten with further occupation and putting an end to the statehood of the country. 1 This apart, the security environment in general has become very unstable, competition has been intensified within the region and it is realistic that the situation spills out of control over time. In addition, there are threats like terrorism, extremism and organized crime and hence, all in all, every known type of threat is very real for Georgia. The country needs an advanced vision and exceptional readiness to counter this situation.

DOMESTIC SOCIAL AND POLITICAL CHALLENGES

In a described complex environment Georgia has to live through with an incomplete statehood: the country undergoes significant internal changes and this process is characterized with unsurprising social tensions. However, the type of tensions is also challengeable.

It’s not only a social revolution which is taking place today in Georgia. Actually, we are witness of the formation of national identity of statehood - something that further aggravates

1 Abkhazian leader S. Bagapsh and South Ossetian leader E. Kokoiti have already voiced new “territorial claims” to Georgia, while Russian Duma deputy S. Markov declared that sees Russia’s interest in annihilation of Georgia’s statehood

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social tensions. It is interesting also, that this happens in a context of declining national identities globally. This trend also undermines unifying currents of the society.

Security-wise, a weak national identity is reflected on two trends: on one hand, it is an obstacle in terms of creation of a strong reserve system and territorial defence forces, and also provides fertile grounds for foreign states to easily manipulate the public opinion.

Is Georgian state capable of building the solid defence system without eliminating these flaws? What are the alternatives? What should the defence system look alike? Answering these questions is vital to defining the security outlook of the government and choosing the principles of institutional setup of the defence system.

CONCLUSIONS FROM THE RECENT PAST

The experience that Georgia has accumulated during 20 years of independence is fairly enough to better define the ways of future development. In terms of security thinking, this period was marked by the belief that Georgia needed to just halt the enemy for few days before the international assistance would arrive. The unipolar system of the post-cold-war world helped to cement that belief.

After the war in 2008 and consequent occupation of Georgian territories by Russia, this faith has shattered. Although the West has certainly played a significant deterrent role vis-à-vis Russia, it also became clear that effective prevention of Russian aggression was impossible. Brussels and Washington has not only failed to prevent aggression but also during two after-war years failed to force Russia implement the provisions of the so called 6-point agreement, which Moscow itself has put its sign on.

These circumstances prove that Georgia needs rather effective defence concept and more relevant defence system. The 4 day long resistance capability may not prove adequate in future; it may fail again to ensure the long-term security of the nation, the more so that the trends in global politics hint to possible increase of disorder and lawlessness in the system of international relations.

TOTAL DEFENCE SYSTEM

During his visit to the Ministry of Defence of Georgia on 28 July, 2010, the President of Georgia has specifically underlined the necessity of creation of a total defence system and the need for organizing the territorial defence forces. The president has spoken of this issue earlier as well, and I have heard of the desire and efforts of the current Defence Minister B. Akhalaia to put this system into force. However, it is equally clear that this is a very difficult task and it will require very significant efforts and time. There is no doubt however, that this kind of endeavor needs deep analysis of the physical, informational and functional parameters of the country.

Georgia’s strategic and physical parameters are more or less comparable with those of Switzerland, Denmark, Singapore, Israel, or Finland. All of these states have found the

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answer on the defense dilemma by building their total defence systems. The same ides has gotten ripe in Georgia after the war in 2008. However, there are no doctrinal basis and programs in place to my knowledge.

Total defence means amalgamation of all the institutes of the state and the society under the mission of resistance against some threat. This can be a full-scale armed aggression of a foreign power, global terrorism or even some epidemic the key principle is a purposeful unity of all formal and informal institutions of the particular society.

The goal of total defense system is to ensure military, civil, economic, social and psychological security of the society. This implies a setup of a system capable to integrate the objectives of the physical security, social order, and way of life, welfare, national dignity and social development.

Of course, a defense system cannot be confined to just Defence Ministry and Armed Forces. Actually, it encompasses every single institution of a state and society, and the mechanisms of interaction between them. This notwithstanding, this paper limits itself by those trends and factors that arise from military threats and influence the formation of the Armed Forces and support institutions.

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CHAPTER 1: GEORGIA ACCORDING TO DEFENCE PLANNER

In order to evaluate or plan the parameters of the defense system, one needs to recreate a conceptual frame for the subject of defense and its environment. In other words, a kind of social and national self-consciousness is needed to make decisions about the type, institutional setup, strategy and doctrine of national defense.

This framework should comprise of informational (identity related), quantitative (demographics, personnel strength), qualitative/functional (education, economy, social capital…) and physical (location, territory, terrain) parameters. This is meant to question our goals, resources, the quality and quantity of those resources, the environment and obstacles to face. The same information is needed for any potential adversary. Only such informational load allows for effective planning of the ways of achieving the preplanned objectives.

Georgia may have several adversaries in future. However, Russia and the regimes of the occupied territories deserve special attention today. Certainly, a separate work is needed to describe every future player of interest we will just give brief general outline of the closest neighbors.

The present overview assigns special chapters to discuss the quantitative, informational, functional and physical parameters of our interest. Number of population and numbers of ethnic subdivisions, those eligible to serve in the army and ethnic structure and dynamics of the population is understood in this study as quantitative parameters. Functional parameters include education, social capital, technology base, natural resources, and military readiness and defence planning. Informational parameters include national identity, existent discourses, and social justice. And finally, physical parameters include location of the country and foreign threats, as well as terrain and nature of military risks.

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PARAMETERS OF GEORGIA’S AGGREGATE POWER

QUANTITATIVE PARAMETERS

NUMBER OF POPULATION

Georgia is a 117 th country in the world by the size of its population. The country has 4.6 million inhabitants, of which: 2

15.8% is under the age of 14 years

68% is from 15 to 64. Of these:

o

1.3 million male, and

o

1.5 million female

16.2% is of 65 and up

1.09 million Males and 1.14 million Females are fit for military service (i.e. of between the age range 16-49) 3

Urban Population constitutes some 53% of the total. It is mainly concentrated in some 70 towns and cities. Actually, a half of these reside in Tbilisi and the rest is distributed in 4-5 cities. The size of the rest of the towns hardly exceeds 20-30 thousand.

Rural Population constitutes some 47% of total. There are 3600 villages in Georgia, of which only 2100 have a population of 500 and up.

Demographic Growth Rate for Georgia is negative (-0.3%). Even in the best years of the last couple of decades it has seldom surpassed the mark of zero.

2 Official data of the department of statistics of the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development of Georgia

3 Military compulsory service in Georgia is determined for the age range of 18-45. However, we focus on the size of population by internationally adopted statistical standard of the „eligible for military service” data.

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Figure 1: Changes in Numbers of Georgia's Population, 1989-2005 For the purpose of defence planning

Figure 1: Changes in Numbers of Georgia's Population, 1989-2005

For the purpose of defence planning it is important to know not only the size of the age group eligible for military service but also its relative value compared with the same factor of at least the neighboring states: 4

Figure 2: Size of Population in the Countries of the Region

Armenia Georgia Azerbaijan Iran Turkey Russia
Armenia
Georgia
Azerbaijan
Iran
Turkey
Russia

Figure 3: Population Growth Rates

Armenia Azerbaijan Georgia Iran Turkey Russia
Armenia
Azerbaijan
Georgia
Iran
Turkey
Russia

4 Data are taken from CIA World Factbook data sheets

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POPULATION STRUCTURE

Figure 4: Population Structure in Regional States (By age and gender)

Female Male Armenia Georgia Azerbaijan Iran Turkey Russia
Female
Male
Armenia
Georgia
Azerbaijan
Iran
Turkey
Russia

Georgia’s population is more aged that in any other state of the region. The fact that the size of under-14 population is the smallest in the region, decides that positive shift is not likely in the near future.

“LIVE FORCE”

2.23 million Citizens and considered eligible for military service. 5 Of these:

o

1.09 million Males, and

o

1.14 Females

The more strict criteria count men and women of 15-64 age range. Their total number in Georgia exceeds 32.8% of the total population. This shows significant negative value compared with the neighboring nations.

There are about 100 thousand former servicemen within the age range of 18-45 years.

Figure 5: Percentage of 15-64 age population, regional States (2009)

Armenia Azerbaijan Georgia Iran Turkey Russia
Armenia
Azerbaijan
Georgia
Iran
Turkey
Russia

5 Military compulsory service in Georgia is determined for the age range of 18-45. However, we focus on the size of population by internationally adopted statistical standard of the „eligible for military service” data.

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Figure 6: Real size 15-64 age population, regional nations (2009)

Armenia Georgia Azerbaijan Iran Turkey Russia
Armenia
Georgia
Azerbaijan
Iran
Turkey
Russia

According to marginal standard, about 1 % of the total population may serve in a regular army. In Georgia’s case, it means 46 thousand military servicemen. About 10 times this number may go into reserve force. Thus, the Georgian population allows the defence force of roughly a half million.

ETHNIC COMPOSITION OF GEORGIA’S POPULATION

Ethnic composition is a significant aspect which helps the half way to estimate the level of civil and national unity of any nation. Also, it draws the bearings to foresee the foreign influences on parts of the population, possible issues of influence, extent of danger etc.

Others Kurds Greeks Jews Armenians Azerbaijanis Ukrainians Russians Ossetians Abkhaz Georgian
Others
Kurds
Greeks
Jews
Armenians
Azerbaijanis
Ukrainians
Russians
Ossetians
Abkhaz
Georgian

Clearly, proportion of ethnic Georgians in total population has grown since 1992. This happened mainly due to vast migrations of ethnic Jews, Russians, Greeks and Armenians. As a result, the size of total population has come down. Also, Armenian ethnic group which was the largest ethnic minority in Georgia has gone on the second place, while conceding the first place to ethnic Azerbaijani community.

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Figure 7: Changes in numbers of ethnic minorities, 1979-2002
Figure 7: Changes in numbers of ethnic minorities, 1979-2002

These graphs prove that:

- Georgian population is more aged than in any other nation of the region. The size of under-14 population is the lowest as well, which means that positive trends are not likely in the nearest future.

- Georgia has the lowest rate of men eligible for military service. In real numbers it’s even lower than in much smaller Armenia.

- Population growth rate is negative the second worst in the region (after Russia). All other regional nations have positive population growth rate.

- The rate of urban population is very low

- Ethnic composition of population is very diverse. Out of four main minority groups three (Azerbaijanis, Armenians and Ossetians) are the kin of the neighboring nations, 6 and one although native of Abkhazia - possess Russian passports and are under Russian “protectorate”.

6 Armenia, Azerbaijan and North Ossetia in Russia

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FUNCTIONAL PARAMETERS

EDUCATION

Georgia significantly falls back of the developed countries by the level of education. The level of technical education is quite low in the country, while the level of school education is also going down during the last two decades. This makes the future prospects quite dire.

Technologies and management have an immense influence on modern warfare. For this reason, the level of education of the population has an immediate impact on the professionalism and readiness of military organization. In modern armies soldiers are in touch with complex technologies; and the level of decision-making has been hugely decreased and now requires not only technological skills but also a rational and inventive mindset. A good soldier necessarily needs a clear and quick mind, deep realization of the mission, firm values, etc. Sergeants and officers need the knowledge of proper management and leadership something also related with the level and type of education.

According to UNESCO estimates 7 , 99.7% of the 15-24 age youth are literate. Nonetheless, problems of school education have become an integral part of the lives of average Georgian families. In 2010, 89% of 10000 school teachers have failed the qualification exams, and only 34% of high school graduates succeeded in entry exams to Georgian Universities. Interestingly, the worst results were shown in technical and natural sciences. For instance, out of 14 thousand high school graduates only 81 chose physics and only 47 passed the exam. Chemistry was a choice of 465, while only 160 succeeded to pass it.

As for the level of higher education, Georgians still hold some formal height mainly thanks to older generation. But considering the ease of obtaining diplomas in the past, this “height” hardly reflects the reality. However, official data grants Georgia the following grades 8 :

Figure 8: Number of researchers by countries and fields of research

 

Humanities

Social

Agriculture

Medical and

Engineering and

Natural

Total

Studies

Healthcare

Technologies

Sciences

Researchers

Armenia

227

261

420

250

940

2016

4114

Azerbaijan

1690

656

825

743

2584

4782

11280

Georgia

1548

761

919

803

1213

2380

7624

Iran

-

15920

10056

12748

18180

9724

66628

Russia

9489

13740

13743

15907

244475

94668

392022

Turkey

8383

15122

5631

21269

18943

7762

77110

Apart from real data, relative figures reveal the much more interesting picture of which field of research seems more inclining for the scientists of a particular country 9 . If we build this model for the six countries of the region then we will see that in post-soviet states natural

9 Ibid

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sciences are relatively better developed, although Georgia stands the last among them. Russia and Armenia are among the leaders. Georgia leads the field of humanities, while it is the last again in the field of engineering and technologies. In almost all other fields, like social sciences, agriculture, and healthcare, Georgia leads the list again.

Figure 9: Number of researchers per 100 000 citizen, by countries and fields of research

Armenia Azerbaijan Georgia Iran Russia Turkey Humanities Medical and Healthcare Social Sciences Engineering and
Armenia
Azerbaijan
Georgia
Iran
Russia
Turkey
Humanities
Medical and Healthcare
Social Sciences
Engineering and Technologies
Agriculture
Natural Sciences

Figure 10: total number of researchers, by countries

Engineering and Technologies Agriculture Natural Sciences Figure 10: total number of researchers, by countries 14

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Figure 11: total number of researchers relative to population, by countries

number of researchers relative to population, by countries Figure 12: number of researchers in the fields

Figure 12: number of researchers in the fields of engineering and technologies

of researchers in the fields of engineering and technologies Figure 13: researchers in the field of

Figure 13: researchers in the field of natural sciences

of researchers in the fields of engineering and technologies Figure 13: researchers in the field of

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These graphs illustrate rather satisfactory picture for Georgia compared with others in the region and looked at in prism of relative models. However, real numbers prove huge disadvantage with the big regional powers. It is noteworthy also, that Georgia has even worse disadvantage in the fields of natural and technical sciences.

SOCIAL CAPITAL

Social capital demonstrates the degree of firmness of the societal bonds. In its turn, social unity is decisive factor of success in the system of total defence. Social capital is a same kind of measure for the society as is, for instance, physical capital (e.g. scissors or airplane) and human capital (e.g. education and health), and it measures the quality of bonds inside the social network, or between such networks. 10

The state of social capital is well reflected on the culture of voluntary associations a fairly problematic issue for Georgia. History shows that associations flourish with the growth of migration: migrants try to create new world around them, establish new social bonds, and this makes the society more dynamic and fitted in itself. 11 On the other account, migration depends on many things, including industrialization, urbanization, violence, etc.

It is interesting also, that the first known types of the associations (in the USA) have been religious and political clubs. These are the very organizations able of creating the most valuable social capital, though other types like trade unions, professional unions, business leagues, women’s organizations, brotherhoods, etc. are also known. Abundance of such organizations indicates that the society is strong, glued, dynamic and vibrant.

Orthodox Christian congregations are the most visible fast-growing networks in Georgia. Although it is true that this trend creates some problems (because, in a sense, the Church has started to challenge the legitimacy of secular government) but proper management of the issue may reveal very interesting resources for stronger statehood. Clearly, the Church is creating the strongest social capital in the country, and very regrettably, it is not utilized in a way that would strengthen the statehood and national consciousness of the society. The topic needs closer work with the Church, as well as on public opinion. It is much needed to synchronize social functions of the Church with the priorities of the state.

IDPs represent a very interesting group in terms of social capital. It is very likely that among these migrants, we may witness the birth of the most vibrant part of Georgian society thanks to the reasons that we already referred to before.

The so called “civil sector” is no less interesting target. This is a circle of people of more or less same values. However, a culture of voluntary association is surprisingly low within the group. Instead, we see the mercantilist attitudes and so called “NGO professionalism”, which is a bad sign in terms of endurance of the group.

10 E.g. John Field, Social Capital, Rout ledge, London and New York, 2008

11 E.g. Robert D. Putnam, The Growth of voluntary Associations in America, 1840-1940, Journal of Interdisciplinary History, Vol.29, pp. 511-557

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One more group which deserves special attention is a circle of liberal-intellectuals. They stand out with the flexibility and mobility comparable with that of religious groups. True, the circle is a matchlessly small one but leadership skills, education and prominence gives these people significant potential power.

Other groups such as trade unions, business leagues etc. are not, still, durable. However, it is likely that they will flourish along with the growth of the economy.

All of this is very significant in defence planning. Parts of Georgian society display uneven readiness to contribute into the process of state building primarily because social bonds are generally weak, while alien to the values of statehood - wherever these bonds are strong (e.g. in religious groups). It is going to be impossible to put solid grounds for statehood without paying needed attention to the notion of social capital, and without doing all in our power to improve it.

People’s ability to resist foreign pressures won’t be attainable without binding the society together, without establishing strict game rules on local levels, without the system of truly shared values. For the purpose of defence, it is vitally significant to have effective and legitimate mechanisms of decision making on local levels. This is particularly significant for the system of total defence the one which requires high level of autonomy, unity and mobility of the population.

VOLUME OF THE ECONOMY

Despite the rapid growth of the past years, the starting position of the economy was so dire as to keep it in poor condition even today. Holding all else constant (or better), few decades will be needed to reach the level of the modern developed economies. Today, Georgia is the last in the region by its per capita GDP levels. It is little lower than Armenia, 0.5 times lower than that of Azerbaijan, 2.5 times lower than in Turkey and Iran and 3 times lower than in Russia.

In real GDP terms, Georgia is the second smallest economy after Armenia, 4 times smaller than Azerbaijan, 42 times smaller compared to Iran, 43 times with Turkey, and 104 times than Russia.

- Georgia’s trade balance is vastly negative, with ¼ ratio between exports and imports

- Industry and entrepreneurship is underdeveloped

- Agriculture is underdeveloped as well

- Industrial annual total turnover hardly exceeds 4 billion Georgian Lari (nearly 2.5 billion USD)

- Small and Medium businesses are terribly low in volume

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Figure 14: Volume of GDP in the Caucasus Nations, compared w/EU and USA

EU USA RF Iran Turkey Azerbaijan Georgia Armenia
EU
USA
RF
Iran
Turkey
Azerbaijan
Georgia
Armenia

NATURAL RESOURCES

In terms of natural resources, Georgia is rich in their variety, but of course, very poor in terms of volumes. Therefore, Georgia’s fossil riches are not of interest for the purpose of economic growth.

Volume and the degree of development of energy resources are of special attention. Georgia possesses little of these resources, which means that in times of war, the country will be heavily dependent on Azerbaijan, which, in turn, may or may not be in a position to help. This circumstance dictates that the country needs own reserves and needs to work on this direction.

TECHNOLOGY BASE

Georgia is quite backward in terms of technological development. There is fairly limited potential of such development, while international markets (especially in military sphere) are not easily accessible. Neither is the economy of the size to allow for ambitious procurements.

However, there is small but very interesting potential which may be used as a very good starting point. In the first place, this is the so called “Aviation Factory” and the Tank Repair facility. It is very significant that the potential of these units be studied in good detail, and the higher educational institutions as well as expatriate scientists and even the foreign scientists are allowed to make use of these pieces of technology.

***

The described reality means that it is no easy task to achieve stable economic development in Georgia, while the country will fail to earn living and will fail to defend itself without proper education and technology base.

Security-wise, this means that the economy should reach some critical level of self-reliance in order to be ready for a prolonged conflict. The less vulnerable parts of the territory and those closer to international markets should be used as the primary location for industrial development. Tourism should develop in all other parts of the country. Thus, diversified trade routes and national industrial development seem to be the priorities in terms of security.

Another key conclusion of the analysis is that the primacy of diplomacy and inclination to form strategic alliances worldwide should remain the key drivers of Georgia’s foreign

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politics. The country simply lacks resources to long stand the potential aggression of big neighbors if such thing happens.

MILITARY READINESS

It goes without saying that the armament and equipment of Georgian army are below the desired volume and quality. However, the problem is not only that. After the steep decline in world military spending in the first half of 1990s, global defence expenditure has dramatically risen ever since, and has surpasses the cold war levels in 2009.

Figure 15: World Defence Expenditure, 1988-2009

in 2009. Figure 15: World Defence Expenditure, 1988-2009 Even in Russia, which has went through the

Even in Russia, which has went through the crisis of 1998, the defence spending rates have risen by 48% after 1996; the same data is 50% for the USA, and 165% - for China, and it continues to grow.

Figure 16: Increase in Defence Spending, 1996-2005

to grow. Figure 16: Increase in Defence Spending, 1996-2005 Neighboring Azerbaijan and Armenia have been spending

Neighboring Azerbaijan and Armenia have been spending far above Georgian rates for more than a decade, nothing to say about Iran and Turkey whose size in incomparable with that of Georgia’s. However, defence spending has started to grow rapidly after the Rose Revolution and already in 2004 it has exceeded Armenian levels.

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Defence spending 2003 ($million)

Defence spending 2009 ($ million)

Georgia

92 (1.1%)

665 (8.5%)

Armenia

183

(2.7%)

405 (3.3%)

Azerbaijan

382

(2.2%)

1 434 (3.8%)

Iran

7195 (2.9%)

9174 (2.7%)

Turkey

19155

(3.4%)

19009 (2.2%)

Russia

40600

(4.3%)

61000 (3.5%)

Figure 17: Changes in Defence Expenditure, 2003-2009 (SIPRI)

Georgia Armenia Azernaij. Turkey Iran Russia
Georgia
Armenia
Azernaij.
Turkey
Iran
Russia

This data considered, it can be said that Georgian army existed almost only on paper until the Rose Revolution. Few million dollars which the previous government allocated for defence, was mostly spent in administrative purposes and often disappeared in corruption deals.

However, rapid growth of Defence spending did not translate into a rapid development of the army, more so that after 2008 the government had to cut the defence money to almost the half the mount it spent in 2007.

Additionally, amid Russian obstruction, old partners became reluctant to sell weapons to Georgia the reason why the equipment and the armament of the Georgian army are refilled by just the level of minimal necessity. 12

12 Official data puts 108 million on entire acquisition

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Figure 18: Defence Expenditure 2003-2009, South Caucasus (SIPRI)

18: Defence Expenditure 2003-2009, South Caucasus (SIPRI) PARAMETERS OF DEFENCE SPENDING Defence spending is

PARAMETERS OF DEFENCE SPENDING

Defence spending is traditionally split on four model sub-sections. These are:

- Operations and Maintenance (O&M)

- Infrastructure/Military Construction (I)

- Personnel Expenditures (P), and

- Procurements (PR)

(I) - Personnel Expenditures (P), and - Procurements (PR) Figure 19: Modeling Georgian Army, 2007 VS

Figure 19: Modeling Georgian Army, 2007 VS 2010

Out of these four parameters one (personnel) is a quantitative parameter while all the others represent its function. Of course, ideally all four are functions of one the supreme commander.

In recent years, the vast majority of post-soviet states spent 2-3 times less on operations than on personnel. This means that most of the funds were spent on wages, while training and technology renovation was let unfunded. Of course, one sees the opposite picture in the developed economies where the operations consume far higher amounts than wages. But the real difference in not only in the logic of the model but in its size as well: the deference in real money terms is truly huge.

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Figure 20: The USA Army Model, 4 parameters (2009) It is likewise interesting to note

Figure 20: The USA Army Model, 4 parameters

(2009)

It is likewise interesting to note that the model of the Georgian army totally lacks the R&D component. Although it is a logical shortcoming of the Georgian reality, it also shows that the approach toward the future of the Army leaves some space for more creative attitudes. Theoretically, the level of autonomy of the defence system goes down without the R&D (research and development) component. The next graph (#19) displays that same kind of model for the US army, with R&D component consuming fairly considerable portion of defence budget.

component consuming fairly considerable portion of defence budget. Figure 21: US Army Model, 5 parameters (2009)

Figure 21: US Army Model, 5 parameters (2009)

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Figure 22: Changes in Georgian Army Model (Real Volumes) Figure 23: Changes in Budget Components,

Figure 22: Changes in Georgian Army Model (Real Volumes)

Figure 22: Changes in Georgian Army Model (Real Volumes) Figure 23: Changes in Budget Components, 2005-2010

Figure 23: Changes in Budget Components, 2005-2010

Figure 22: Changes in Georgian Army Model (Real Volumes) Figure 23: Changes in Budget Components, 2005-2010

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Figure 24: Changes in component share in total budget, 2005-2010

24: Changes in component share in total budget, 2005-2010 Figure 25: Defence Spending, 2005-2010 ($1000) To

Figure 25: Defence Spending, 2005-2010 ($1000)

To conclude, modern model of the Georgian Armed Forces seem fairly inadequate to the size of the country and the challenges it faces: the small country like Georgia cannot rely on personnel strength rather than its quality. However small the personnel number is, its quality is still more significant.

The second conclusion is that in an era of technologies, the small nation is very unlikely to defend itself by conventional strategies. Small sizes (economy, population, etc) decide that the priority should be given to the strategy of indirect approach 13 and the irregular war 14 tactics. The defence system and the directions of development of the Armed Forces should be planned accordingly.

13 In a strategy of indirect approach, one avoids facing the enemy and tries to break the psychological and physical balance of the adversary by the effect of deception and surprise. In particular, this means to identify weakest points in the enemy forces and target it constantly by selecting the place and time which is the least expectable by the adversary. Direct actions yield a very costly victory not only for small but for the big nations as well. By means on direct action, one may thwart the enemy toward its base or beyond, but in doing so, it is almost impossible to fundamentally shatter enemy’s powers and to finally defeat it. In course of direct action, one spends the resources which are comparable to those of the enemy, i.e. the battle becomes a matter of amount of resources in control, and whoever owns more, advances further. Such strategy is unbearable for any small country and the defence planner should take this in close account.

14 Irregular war is a broad notion. Normally, the term denotes unconventional military action and psychological operations, army intelligence and counterterrorist activities, terrorist operations and insurgent raids.

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INFORMATION PARAMETERS

In this part, nation’s mentality, culture, identity and discourses are put into focus. All of it is analyzed baring the nation’s resistance capabilities in mind. Such analysis is particularly important for building the total defence system because they have a direct impact on defining the final model of the system.

SHARED NATIONAL IDENTITY

A small country like Georgia has a small span of choice between the defence models. On one hand, many think Georgia needs a small-sized professional Armed Force, expensive military technologies and small, well organized reserve force. For me though, this model would work only if conditioned that the country enjoys a strong foreign support. Hence, such model is irrelevant today due to many cited reasons. On the other hand so, a firmly united, well organized nation and a developed defensive infrastructure can be a solution. Unfortunately, neither of the two is the reality today.

Once the plan is to be put forward, a good planner would always choose a stable, long- term solution. A model which automatically requires foreign support cannot be such solution. A real solution should be a durable one. Hence, the priority should be given the model which builds on local skills and leads to a credible defence capability. It is true that the task is not an easy one.

Georgia’s population, the variety of its ethnic and religious groups, is loosely connected by the shared identity. The social fabric is, in a sense, fragmented and the society is still looking after a strong common denominator. In the course, we see the two trends headed by a Church on one hand, and the State on the other. Despite natural competition, they can play mutually beneficial roles in the name of building a strong national identity. However, no one of the two has been established in a leadership position and we still see the process of brewing.

***

Many social and political scientists would probably agree that civil society is very underdeveloped in Georgia. Causes are historical and will take time to change, but the evidence is there: very low level of urbanization; a very small size of “middle class”; underdeveloped business (especially the SMEs); an abyss between the traditional and legal institutions, and the weak socialization level. Initially the Tsar’s, and later the communist empires hindered the natural transformation of the society, and the crops are becoming manifest in these days when left alone and faced by our modern self.

As for the civil sector, its real institutionalization is still a problem. Its two grave facets, voluntarism and self-organization, are not simply there. These are substituted by the donor injections and/or political satellites, which means that the situation is largely fake and artificially fed to sustain. Also, a foggy difference of the civil society representatives and the political class makes population confused and gives rise to nihilism and mistrust within the society.

The so called shared identity of Georgia’s population is mostly based on ethnic Georgians trust in common history and shared culture. Other ethnic groups are loosely integrated in even this general picture. Hence, in terms of common nationalist drive, the readiness of Georgia’s multiethnic population is fairly low. This readiness is not very high even in ethnic Georgians the reason for which being a crisis in social capital. The situation is well seen on

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micro levels where one sees sheer inability to come to terms for simple decisions. A big portion of the population seeks maximum autonomy, and the level of socialization remains fairly low or just fake.

For these reasons, the society remains loosely connected. Not only different ethnic groups are still fairly foreign to each other, but also the level of civil integration and the talent of self- organization of the society are very low. I think a sense of some common threat (which may mean a common economic interest) plays the role of key national denominator so far.

DISCOURSES

The State plays an important role in an informational domain. It tries to seed the discourses of independence, sovereignty, progress and liberty, entrepreneurship, free trade, tolerance, etc. This notwithstanding, these concepts remain marginal for the considerable parts of the society. It is probably the economic and social conditions not allowing the faster progress of middle class and rational discourses.

The Church plays no lesser role in the informational domain. True, the Church is the strongest connector between people but security-wise, it blurs the sense of SELF in the face of main adversary which happens to be of the same religion. Unfortunately also, the primacy of eternal values is often understood by the Church and the society as rejection of the interests of the state.

Georgian society is characterized by a strong political polarization. This means more than just disagreement in terms of political preferences. Looked at in deeper, the disagreement often happens on the value of the idea of state as such. Surely, this is a problematic situation in terms of national unity and the process has gone as far as to face the emergence of collaborators with the occupation forces.

Liberal democratic discourses such as freedom and tolerance, human rights, etc. are often marginalized and, with the exception of 2-3 cities, do not play a significant role in the life of people.

Instead, contradictory leftist slogans are very popular. These slogans oddly demand a “big” state which pays for everything and takes care of the poor and depressed, and on the other hand, claims for a “small” state which does not show the signs of existence and does not bother the citizens with “needless” rules. The level of social and economic development of the society decides that leftist and religious slogans retain the highest popularity.

SOCIAL JUSTICE

It is obvious that the sense of social justice is fairly low within the society. In social affairs, many people reason by whatever is good or beneficial exclusively for themselves or their narrow circle. This is particularly true for rural population because the urban population has more or less developed some level civil culture. Overall, this situation decides that the prospect for self-government remains fairly low for the nearest future. We are faced with a sheer inability of the very large parts of the population to come to terms about very simple matters of common interest.

In this situation, it is very hard to hope that the population will keep the capacity of resistance in times of crisis. This is well seen on the example of current self-government: with no real self-government in place, we fail to see emerging parallel informal institutions aimed at solving the hoarded problems.

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DEMAND ON LEADER

Any society is ruled by force. A force sometimes belongs to an individual, and sometimes it is collective. The right on the use of force we call legitimacy. Hence, it can be personified or collective. Personal legitimacy belongs to charismatic (or) quasi-criminal leaders, while collective one implies an accord on common rules and can be traditional or legal (which is also a particular case of traditional rule).

Because there is a lack of leadership in provinces, a sense of social justice is low, and traditional institutions of social legitimacy are destroyed, one sees a clear lack of authority within this segment. This is a two-fold threat in terms of total defence. One because the population is open for foreign penetration and second because it is so loose and unable to organize.

Instead, a considerable part of the population still displays respect to the phenomenon of force. In face of inability to nurture own justice, they are ready to obey the dictated rules, conceive force as justice. This means that the notion of social justice is mostly alien and there is a clear demand on leader.

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PHYSICAL PARAMETERS

LOCATION AND FOREIGN THREATS

Georgia is located on the verge of Europe and Central Asia on one hand, and Russia and Middle East, on the other. This decides the most complex geopolitical position of the country.

Georgia’s geography makes it the area of competition not only of regional but also of global powers. This puts the country in front of almost impossible tasks: to produce strong, though flexible societal and state institutions, and to guarantee the security and development of the society.

The geography and modern political configuration of the South Caucasus decides that, with all other factors constant, Turkey-Azerbaijan, Russia-Armenia and Iran-Georgia should form strategic alliances. Despite the fact the current strategic picture is different from the above described, purely geographical factors put Russia and Turkey in a position of mutual alternatives as Georgias enemies and friends, while leaves Iran desirable balancing power between the two. These are constant geographic factors that will influence any future course of Georgia’s foreign policy.

Complexity of Georgia’s geography requires the most professional and fine dealing, aiming, in the first place, at exploiting the regional power balances in Georgia’s favor. At the same time, partnership with global powers will remain Georgia’s priority in any foreseeable future, because this is the type of links which bring Georgia more independence from regional powers and flexibility in dealing with them.

TERRAIN AND MILITARY THREATS

Georgia’s terrain makes it natural fortress. Obviously, the characteristics of the terrain should be incorporated into military strategies, tactics and arms selection because the same components decide the nature of military conflicts and potential of their impact on social and economic life of the country.

Georgia is a mountainous country, surrounded by the Great and the Minor ridges of the Caucasus from north and south, and it has an inter-ridge plain of the Caucasus as a very interesting piece of communication. It goes all the way through Georgia and is divided on two by the Likhi Ridge in the middle. This is the main characteristic of Georgian terrain to be reflected on military strategies and defence planning in general.

The inter-ridge plain is a single communication which allows transporting of large amounts of military personnel and technology at any given time. In case of aggression, the enemy will try to make use of this pass, shut it down for Georgian forces, and cut the country on the west and the east. It is very likely that the enemy will succeed, and this means that Georgia needs auxiliary and also covert passes to keep country running. It will be needed to mount several defensive barriers all along the inter-ridge plain, on both sides of it: in order to prevent enemy’s free movement and inflict serious damage to it.

In case of enemy’s aggression its main forces will try to move along this pass, but they will fail to penetrate the heart of it if necessary defensive measures are timely taken. The enemy will face constant fire along this route, while being unable to seriously hurt defense forces. Interestingly, it won’t be necessary to make ambushes near the enemy positions because the terrain allows easy distance targeting from afar.

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As for the logistics, the enemy will try to avoid ground movement and the priority will be given to air communication. But they will try to mount gradual annexation in case if the enemy is a neighbor because neighbors will feel protected from their own territories.

Hence, it is most likely that Russians will try to establish an uninterruptable communication line all the way through their offensive. They will create a chain of military bases to tie the occupied land to the territories under their control. In real terms, this means that the threat will be coming from the territories of Akhalgori, and lands across Enguri River, although Armenian perimeter cannot be excluded also because of the Giumri base there. Considering the real situation today, we may think additional bases are now needless for Russia, but this doesn’t mean that the new military threats are unlikely. Rather, this means that the preference may change in short term and Russians switch from overt military aggression toward isolated raids aimed at boosting grounds for internal political escalation.

Thus, in case of good preparation in defence, we may still realistically expect isolated acts of aggression, while the enemy may continue gradual annexation policy is Georgia meets unprepared. In any case, the territories adjacent to those in Russian control will come under first attacks.

The enemy will try to overcome Georgia’s terrain advantages with carpet fire and technologies. Georgia should try to keep the advantage of the terrain as long as at all possible. This must be done by making the enemy face ghosts, not the standing army. Concentration of forces and open-front warfare should be completely excluded from Georgian strategies. Until the final blow to the enemy (which, by the way, may never happen) the goal of Georgian forces should be to inflict great psychological and physical damage to them, and be ready to rapidly group together for a final, decisive strike (of intermediate significant strikes). Forces should disperse and disappear after any such blow.

Detaching the enemy from the area of its basement and infliction of massive damage this, I believe, will be prime objective of Georgian forces after the first phase of foreign aggression.

To fulfill these, Georgia needs courageous and cohesive population, and mobile, maneuvering, fast, well-equipped small regular units, managed centrally but also able on autonomous action.

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CONCLUSION

LIMITS AND CHALLENGES OF GEORGIAN DEFENCE SYSTEM

Georgia’s population is small and aged, ethnically diverse and loosely integrated;

Common national identity is weak and mainly bases on the belief of ethnic Georgians in common historical past and common language;

Level of education is generally unsatisfactory, while the lowest in the region in the fields of technology and natural sciences;

Social capital is degraded, while positive trends appear useless for state building;

Urbanization levels remain very low, while the population of the 1/3 of the villages is under 500.

In rural areas some degree of power vacuum is observable; there are hardly the effective legitimate decision-making mechanisms in place in rural communities;

Georgia has the smallest per capita GDP in the region, while the second smallest total GDP in real numbers;

Industry and entrepreneurship is underdeveloped and 90% of production is due to big enterprises. SMEs are undersized, trade balance negative; technology base poor; and natural resources of insignificant volumes;

All this notwithstanding, Georgia is one of the fastest growing economies today, and keeps good chances for development in future;

Georgia’s mountains and inter-ridge plain provide convenient conditions for guerrilla warfare strategy, but additional physical infrastructure is clearly needed to provide basic training to the population and equip regular forces with needed resistance capabilities;

The most realistic challenge for the regular forces seem to be putting down the enemy intrusions along the border line, especially on South Ossetian, Abkhazian and Armenian perimeters;

Continuation of the gradual annexation policy is likely if the adversary feels serious lack of readiness of Georgian defenses.

In the very short run, Georgian reserve forces can be formed by 18-45 year old citizens who have previously served in the Armed Forces and still retain certain skills.

For medium and long term periods, an advanced plan of building the reserve force should be drawn. The plan should be in full accord with general defence doctrine.

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CHAPTER 2: SECURITY ENVIRONMENT AND MILITARY RISKS

Georgia tries to keep sovereignly in a highly complex geo-strategic environment. The state does not possess any extraordinary resources and no other state guarantees its security. Nonetheless, Georgia needs to deal with all kinds of threats which are either purely military in character or contain significant military component. These are:

- Full scale military aggression

- Low intensity conflict

- Terrorism and sabotage

- Arming of criminals by other states

- Spillover of conflicts from neighboring states

- Attempts of coup d’état (staged civil wars with covert external participation)

CURRENT AND POTENTIAL ADVERSARIES

As said, the location and internal political configuration of the Caucasus decides that, with all other factors constant, Russia-Armenia, Turley-Azerbaijan and Iran-Georgia should be forming strategic alliances. Surely though, Iran-Georgia link is not working today due to many logical factors. However, the link has immediately shown itself as soon as US support to Georgia has briefly declined.

Georgia has good relations with Turkey which is determined by Ankara’s interest as well: in a situation when Armenia is said to be a strategic partner to Russia, Turley needs an access to the Caspian region where Georgia appears a single alternative pass.

Azerbaijan and Georgia also maintain good friendly relations and it is unlikely to expect any realistic threat from this country as far as Azerbaijani-Turkish partnership model exists; on its part, it is Georgia’s interest to keep Baku as friend and reliable rear in terms of energy supplies, economic links, diplomacy etc.

There are positive relations between Georgia and Armenia as well. Georgia is an only ground link for Yerevan to the outside world (beside the link with Iran which is fairly limited and closely controlled by Moscow);

Today, Russian Federation is a single obvious enemy to Georgia. Russian officials openly declare that Georgia’s statehood is a real problem to them. Apart from grabbing Georgian territories and building military bases there, Moscow does all in its power to acquire total control of the Georgian government. Russia’s prime objective is to overthrow the political system, not to grab territories. Thus, any military move by Russia will be motivated by that prime mission and will target the government and the political system. Hence, Georgia’s greatest challenge is to resist Russian pressures (which may also include Armenian direction) that may come in any of the listed form.

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RUSSIAN INTERESTS, POWER AND POSSIBLE TYPES OF FUTURE OPERATIONS

Despite numerous problems of their own Russia is a very powerful country. For example, it has 27 times bigger population than Georgia but the size is not Moscow’s main advantage. The point where Moscow really leads in is technologies; thanks to them Russians feel secure vis-à-vis big powers, while trying to push their own interest on the expense of smaller countries like Georgia. Russian army is in a fairly dire condition today, but the Kremlin doesn’t need good soldiers. They can bomb and ruin Georgia from afar again thanks to military technologies.

Russia’s motivation to keep on enmity with Georgia is very high. Mainly, this is determined by geopolitical reasons but purely civilizational, cultural, political and even personal reasons also play their role.

Meanwhile, deterrent factors against Russia have been significantly weakened during the past few years. USA’s influence in the region is unprecedentedly low today, Turkey cannot (and will not) compete with Russia as a full pair. Iran is also almost useless for Georgia because of its international problems, because of its weakness and because of its huge civilizational distance. Hence, the situation is very fragile and mainly depends on the USA’s and Europe’s diplomacy efforts. This may fail in any moment if the Kremlin becomes convinced that “Georgian issue” won’t cost much to them. In such case, we may face full-scale aggression aiming at final annexation of Georgia.

However, Russians have their limits and they should also be considered. In the first place, this is Georgia’s status as independent and sovereign country. Elimination of this status is only in Russian interest and they fail in finding international support on this issue. Even this single reason already means that Russia cannot stage the same violence it does in the North Caucasus. However devastating the Russian strikes be, Moscow will still have to back off from direct interference in the civilian life of the country and at least formally respect the status of independence and sovereignty. Also, they fail to forbid international contacts by Georgia and one day may have to leave the country again as they once had to oblige themselves on 1999 OSCE summit in Istanbul.

This means that if faced with realistic possibility of heavy losses, Russians may consider the negligent strategic value of full-scale military aggression against Georgia. As said, their prime goal is to change the political system here, and coupled with other stated arguments, this means that in nearest future, the Kremlin may view the military component as being secondary means, as having just the supportive function in their strategy. On the other hand, triggering of this “secondary function” will be credible only if they think internal political escalation is possible and will conclude in effective coup d’état.

Despite the small size of Georgia, it would be fairly illogical to admit that Georgia’s readiness cannot stop Russians to seize the whole country, build check-points on all of its territory and stay there. They just lack resources for such an endeavor and it is very likely that their losses will dramatically rise if Russians resort to such a strategy of military control of Georgia. Also, it is very likely that Turkey and Iran will become increasingly cautious and will see the interest in providing weapons and other means to Georgian resistance fighters. In view of North Caucasus quagmire, such developments are very unlikely.

Thus, Russian goals remain unchanged even if they resort to military force again: overthrow the government, appoint puppet ministers and rule Georgia though them. For this they need not just a successful military operation but breaking the will and the resistance capacity of

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the army and society. For this goal, Russians will operationalize not only military but also informational, economic and diplomatic strategies.

There are fully equipped Russian motorized brigades both in Tskhivnali region and Abkhazia. These units are strengthened with air-support and anti-air means. In the North Caucasus, Russians want to leave 7 motorized brigades and by one mountainous brigades in Dagestan, Chechnya and Ingushetia. Also, they plan to equip the missile brigade in Krasnodar with Iskanders. Also, it is very likely that Moscow will manage to freely utilize the very strong base at Giumri regardless the Armenian position on that issue.

Such alignment of the forces allows the conclusion that future operations will show little difference from those we saw in 2008. This will see the focus on firepower, attempts to demoralize Georgian forces and population, and move fast forward. Distant shelling of critical infrastructure and cities is also very likely. It is also likely that the scale of firepower will be much higher than in 2008. However, we may think that Russians won’t dare to penetrate deep into the country if they know that it’s going to be a swamp for them. Thus, the main threat will come from the air, but effective preparation is possible anyway.

As noted earlier, one of the main tasks of Georgian Armed Forces will be to ensure that the enemy cannot advance deeper in the country. Apart from preparation of the country for such an attack, it is vitally important to put emphasis on points where enemy forces may be coming from, and to create appropriate defenses there. In case of attack, stopping the enemy at the borderline will be the main task of Georgian regular forces.

To conclude, these are likely to expect from Russia:

- Attempt to demoralize the society (information warfare; threat of physical annihilation; shelling of densely populated areas, cities)

- Attempts to demoralize the Army (vast firepower, attack on communications, psychological operations)

- Leveraging military force as trigger for internal political escalation (limited aggression and annexation of additional territories)

- Covert military assistance to puppet forces in Georgia (in case of internal escalation)

Any military action by Russia will have as goal to overthrow the political leadership of the country and create the puppet regime in Georgia.

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CHAPTER 3: GEORGIAN ARMED FORCES

Georgian Armed Forces undergo the process of transformation today. In the first place, changes happen in the direction of optimization. Needless administrative units are being cancelled and the leadership tries to achieve maximum management efficiency. Final model will see one central command with air force and fleet as support components.

National Defence Academy is the main defence training facility in Georgia. Curriculum includes officer courses for Ground and Air Forces, and language training. Also, there are the Krtsanisi training center and Mountain Training center of Sachkhere. None of these facilities provide needed education for staff officers. Training of the desirable numbers of NCOs is also a problem. In July, 2010 president Saakashvili declared that the Cadet School will reopen and the Defence Academy will become a 4-year long learning institution 15 .

As for the National Guard, the war has proved that serious changes are necessary in reserve training. The concept was prepared and legal amendments were initiated, but desirable concept and good action plan is still pending. There is one key question still to be answered:

what is going to be the function of the reserve forces? Is it auxiliary force for the Army? But in this case, will the 3000-strong force (as envisioned by the current concept) be enough for this purpose? What will be the strategy for a small standing army which is supported by a 3000-strong reserve force? These forces will fail to fight a conventional war, and on the other hand, they are just inadequate for the total defence system.

As said, the total defence system means mobilization of all the resources of a state and society under the common goal of defence against the enemy. However significant its role, armed forces are just one component in a total defence system, not the single one. The role of National Guard increases in a total defence system. It becomes almost an equal to other commands.

Armament and equipment have also improved in contrast to previous years. However, as far as I can judge, arms were bought without clear concept. It is much needed to create such concept in harmony with defence doctrines.

***

It is clear that Georgia cannot thwart Russian armed forces by conventional means and frontal encounters. To succeed Georgia needs indirect approach and irregular war tactics. Forces and the defence system should be planned accordingly.

Besides, other threats such as emanating from separatism, spillover of North Caucasus conflicts and aspiration for NATO membership dictates that the county needs the regular army which is well trained and equipped, small, mobile, and highly coordinated. But also, it is strongly needed to have a reserve force which is fully relevant to the defence objectives of

15 Commander in Chief at the Ministry of Defence: official website of the Mini

sty of Defence of Georgia: http://mod.gov.ge/popup3.php?Id=652&lang=0

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the country. The key to Georgia’s defence system could be the reserve force and strong civil defence system.

It is often reiterated that the problem of reserve force is connected with the lack of NCOs and officers who would train it. But this issue needs a program approach and spending at least two years on doctrinal issues and NCO training, and in parallel widening of the main course of the program which should intake training of the “army extension force” on one hand, and territorial defence on the other.

It is very important to pay attention to the issue of simple but necessary infrastructure like shooting polygons, armament storage rooms, shelters, stocks of drinking water, medicines and dry food etc.

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CHAPTER 4: CURRENT DOCTRINAL BASE

In recent years, real progress has been achieved in drafting of few of the nation’s key strategic documents. These are:

- The National Security Doctrine which was initially adopted in 2005 and is currently being revised anew

- The Treat Assessment Document which has been finalized but the decision was made to keep its content in full secrecy

- National Military Strategy of 2005 which is a fairly good piece of strategic thought, though its several parts are clearly outdated now

- And the fresh National Defence Doctrine of 2010 which also leaves normal impression but few serious flaws are also evident.

This is huge progress compared to the situation few years ago. Yet, urgent improvements seem to be required. For instance, both the Military Strategy and the Defence Doctrine declare that main objective of the Armed Forces is protection of the country from external aggression which means defence of the territory, sovereignty and security. But one fails to find the concept of how the defence system should be organized. This is simply omitted from these documents;

For example, when speaking of the character of possible future wars, the Defence Doctrine only gives very general definitions and says nothing about the types and characteristics of threats that the defence system will have to deal with. Surprisingly also, there is almost no mention of the security environment and the resources and capabilities in Georgia’s possession;

By the “spirit of resistance” the Doctrine means only military units and personnel, while missing the point of public opinion and popular support, while this component may well be the decisive factor for effective defence policies;

By “mobility” of the units the Doctrine implies fast assignment and maneuver, while saying nothing of the capacity of autonomous action by certain units;

By “decentralized” actions there is meant flexibility and relevant command and control systems, but it remains unclear whether this can be understood as something close to the notion of territorial defence.

Also, it gets immediately clear that the Doctrine and the Strategy are almost identical documents. Formal distinction implies that Doctrines formulate long-term goals and development directions of the system, frame the fundamentals of development. In contrast, strategies are more specific and define the clear-cut goals and the tasks for the Armed Forces. Doctrines change with the arrival of new factors such as new technologies or terrorism; while strategies may follow the political preferences. Mentioned documents fail to show that clear distinction. One finds fairly little difference between the two.

Finally, both documents mention several times the capacity of accurate appraisal of the environment. This implies development of intelligence capabilities on tactical, operational, and strategic levels. Needless to say, this is very important direction, but clearly also, it is needed that parallel independent analysis also develops. Public opinion means a lot in our days, and especially when we speak of total defence system. Hence, more, more practical and

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more beneficial cooperation should develop with independent experts and scientists. Despite few attempts of such relations, it is striking how little is done in this direction.

And the last issue to mention is the reserve system. Its final concept is still nonexistent. The National Military Strategy states that the reserve force should match the national defence objectives, while these objectives are defined by 20 different bullet-points without giving clear distinction between the roles of the standing army and reserve force. Recalling that the Strategy assigns the support function to the reserve force, one may think its role is support of 20 national defence objectives, but this now is going to be an absurd.

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CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS

I think the main problem of Georgian defence planning is the failure to accurately consider the main principle that a small country like Georgia cannot be relying on conventional capabilities. Recent approaches were determined by the belief that international support would come in case of aggression and Georgia just needed to contain the enemy for few days. War in 2008 partially justified that expectation but it also became clear how fragile this support can be.

The Doctrine states several times that readiness is the best deterrent against the enemy. But Georgia’s problems are precisely in this domain – not because of the lack of armament or the personnel readiness but, in the first place, because of weakness of strategic thought. Georgia’s modern doctrinal documents only distantly relate to the reality where the country lives and tries to survive.

It is urgently needed to start building of a total defence system. The president has himself highlighted this issue more than once during recent months, but we still see the failure to convert this general vision into the reality. As we already indicated above, reasons seem to be two-fold: lack of trainers and low readiness of the population to accept this new system.

REGULAR ARMY

Main function of the regular army should be considered stopping the enemy at the border and neutralization of air strikes of the enemy. If the enemy manages to penetrate the depth of the country then the army disperses on several small units and gets ready for diverse strategically significant (or decisive) attacks. This means that the roads and other routes must see advance preparation and the vulnerable points of penetration should be tightly controlled.

It is very significant that the system of command and control works spotless; Soldiers must clearly recognize the chain of command and the limits of each competence; great attention should be paid to the system of communications; also, because it is impossible to rapidly create the system of staff officer education, priority should be given to foreign institutions. Needed number of students should be given full allowance and guarantee their comeback. In parallel, work is needed to build Georgia’s own defence education capabilities.

TERRITORIAL FORCES

As said, regular forces should contain the enemy at the border and neutralize aerial attacks. It was indicated also, that the main goal of the adversary will be the regime change. Hence, it is very important to realize that there are many ways to change the regime. For example, the enemy may not target the Capital if they know that it is well protected. They may plan for internal political escalation, assist the puppet figures by military force and establish the parallel government somewhere. From here, a real civil war will take place, where the enemy will continue to press the regime not only by military force but boosted with some popular

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support as well. Georgia has witnessed similar scenario few years ago, when the elected president Gamsakhurdia was initially forced from the Capital and then defeated in Western Georgia. Russians openly participated in those battles because the Kremlin declared that they recognized the legitimacy of the alternative ruler Shevardnadze whom they officially assisted.

Thus, monolith unity of the defence system is a key principle of its effectiveness. The system should be based on broad conception and encompass the whole country. Prioritization of some points is allowed only by tactical considerations.

Territorial forces must prevent the adversary from penetration deep into the country. This should be a force which is well trained, equipped and motivated. Tactical plans must be drawn for each of the region.

Professional component of the territorial forces should be confined to its command element. All the rest should come from local population trained as territorial reserve.

During peacetime, constant preparation and renovation of needed physical infrastructure should be carried out. This includes bunkers and shelters and special passes. Wherever possible, natural shelters and caves will be a cheap solution.

RESERVE FORCE

Reserve forces are particularly significant in a system of total defence. Reserve can perform multiple tasks, including direct involvement in military operations, assistance to civil population, logistics organization, force protection, guerilla warfare etc. A small country cannot be relying on only professional force or only on reserve, just as cannot be relying on only conventional or only partisan war methods. A small country should be combining all of its forces to defend itself. This implies a specific organization of a defence system.

The meaning of the “reserve” is being understood according to its semantics and indicates the support component of the existent forces. In other words, if a country has a Professional Army, a Territorial Army and a Civil Defence organization, then the reserve force will be needed for each of these components. It is crucially significant to have some defence philosophy prior to building of the reserve force.

Because we say the country needs the three crucial components, being the Professional Army, the Territorial Army and the Civil Defence, the reserve force should be planned accordingly. This will see (1) professional reserve; (2) territorial reserve; and (3) civil reserve.

Some of the key principles of the reserve organization must be the following:

- Reserve service is obligatory for all within the age-range of 18-45 years

- Professional reserve is paid voluntary service, and mainly consists of individual reserve (those who already has military experience)

- Professional Reserve is being trained together with regular professional forces

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- Territorial reserve is a key component of territorial defence

- If required, territorial reserve can provide reserve to professional forces as well

- Territorial reserve consists of compulsory (18-45 year old males) and voluntary (women and those above 15 and below 65) service

- Civil reserve is responsible for sport and education activities in peacetime, and civil defence activities in wartime

- Each member of civil reserve is registered as member of one of the territorial unit

PROFESSIONAL RESERVE

In a defence system where the territorial defence comprises significant portion of total forces, professional reserve can be much lesser than in purely professional systems. In Georgia’s case this can be the third of the number of professional army, i.e. 10-12 thousand in total strength.

This force should be trained at least during one month each year, which means that the training facility should have capacity of 1000 reservist each month, or alternatively the 3 brigades during the year.

250-Lari addition to the salary would mean additional 36 million GEL plus training and accommodation expenses during the service period.

Current costs on personnel, operations and maintenance minus wages and divided first by the number of servicemen and then by 365 days equals 19 GEL as an amount spent daily on each serviceman. Actual figure can be a bit lower but it’s we’ll take it for real. Hence, the cost of accommodation and training of the professional reserve force would amount to annual 6.85 million Lari.

Total yearly expenses on the professional reserve training will equal nearly 43 million Lari.

TERRITORIAL RESERVE

The most challenging task for Georgia is to create Territorial Army. However, the challenge may have answered by program approach to the issue. Nearly two years will be needed to prepare needed numbers of trainer NCOs and put forward related strategic and tactical plans, arrange simple physical infrastructure etc. Special attention should be paid to integrate some of the self-government roles into the functions of the National Guard and increase the spirit of national unity and the will of resistance within the population. These should be simple roles which need no additional spending while filling the gap of the lack of governance, and gives clear benefit to population because serves to order, justice and lawfulness, unites the community and helps to establish the rules of co-existence and distribution of social functions.

TERRITORIAL DEFENCE AND PARTISAN WARFARE

Organization of territorial defence means to enlist the reserve force near their homes, and train them to defend their homes and community. These reservists should possess essential

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knowledge of partisan warfare, be able to operate various means of communication, receive, understand and execute commands, and act in small autonomous groups, wherever needed.

Program approach means to start building the system on municipal levels, and gradually expanding to community and village levels. Reservists should be recruited from all over the country close to their municipalities. Many trained reservists may become the key to the expanding system by gradually becoming the trainers.

Upon the completion of the system, Georgia should have at least 160 thousand well trained reservists in its territorial units. The program will encompass at more than 2000 villages and 70 towns and cities, and leave special training and defense infrastructure all over the country.

SIMPLE CALCULUS: there are 774 thousand men of 20-49 years age living in Georgia in 2010; the figure for women is 825 thousand. This means that 21.6% of total population is men of 20-49, and women of the same age. If we admit that the same proportion is true for any given part of Georgia, then we get the following picture:

 

Total

Men

Women

Tbilisi Achara Guria Imereti Kakheti Mtskheta-Mtianeti Racha-Lechkhumi/Kvemo Svaneti Samegrelo/Zemo Svaneti Samtskhe-Jaavkheti Kvemo Kartli Shida Kartli

1,153

249

261

387

84

88

140

30

32

700

151

159

405

87

92

109

23

25

48

10

11

474

102

107

211

46

48

500

108

113

311

67

70

Total

4,436

958

1005

Hence, total reserve supply is no more than 0,958 million men.

As for the professional component of territorial forces, it will include an NCO per 30-40 privates (per squad), and an officer per 8-10 NCOs.

THE FIRST PHASE OF THE PROGRAM will be training of needed number on NCOs with purpose to further expand the system. Thus, initial nuclei should be created on municipal levels. On the starting point, future NCOs will be included into the program as privates. On each phase of the program, units will be fully operational, with only difference that their number will be fewer than in the end.

Thus, we get a platoon in each municipality which is 3-4 thousand reserve force in total. These men will later go to their communities to train the respective squads there.

4000 reservist is just the 0.3% of total resource, which means that the best of it can be enlisted on the initial stage.

AN NCO IN EACH VILLAGE: there are 3600 villages in Georgia and only 2100 have a population of 500 and more. This means that the number of NCOs trained during the first phase of the program (on municipal levels) will be sufficient to stuff the second phase of the program. Per NCO in each village this can be the key principle to Georgia’s territorial defence.

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COMMAND STRUCTURE: apart from the said, about 100 NCOs and 30-40 officers will be needed to start the territorial defence program. This includes per NCO per municipality and an officer per region (per 5-10 NCOs), plus the necessary hierarchy. In money terms, this equals to nearly 500 thousand Lari in wages.

To launch the program, it is needed to:

- Select nearly 40 officers and specially train them as to staff the command component of the territorial forces. Each officer should comprehend the issues of operational planning, and be able to professionally communicate with the Joint Staff;

- Select nearly 100 NCOs by territorial principle. Their responsibility will be to train future NCOs (3-4 thousand reservists) while initially preparing them for special operations on the municipal level;

- Start preparing the simple training infrastructure in each municipality (shooting polygons, jogging and racing paths for short and long distances, necessary training tools, organization of food, hygiene, etc.)

According to my advance calculations, the program will cost about annual 2.7-3 million Lari on an initial phase, while amounting to annual 150-200 million when completed.

Upon completion, there will be 160 thousand reserve forces in the Territorial Army. This force will be trained for territorial defence and partisan activities.

At least 5 years will be needed to complete the program. However, it will possible to put the system on irreversible wheels in nearly 2 year period. Overall, about 50 million Lari will be needed to start the program, and it will end up in annual 200-250 million upon completion.

CIVIL DEFENCE, EDUCATION AND SPORT

Community Development Centers (CDC) exist in many developed and developing countries. Normally, these organizations enjoy strong support of international donor organizations. Few similar ones exist in Georgia as well with one major difference that they are not elective and depend exclusively on donor support. The specificity of such organizations allows using this institutional form in many good ends, like:

- Organize sporting events and intellectual games

- Propagate healthy way of life

- Carry out civil education

- Carry out professional education

- Implement civil defence education

CDCs should remain in close contact with at least the Ministry of Defense (the National Guard), Police and the Ministry of Education. Also with the ministry of Youth and Sport if this institution will be kept unchanged.

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Table 1: Main Functions of Community Development Centers

Table 1: Main Functions of Community Development Centers SPORT Just as, for example, in Singapore and

SPORT

Just as, for example, in Singapore and Switzerland, sport and civil defense should be closely related with the defence system in general. The system should ensure that any citizen gets integrated into the most significant sphere for the state and society such as defence. The National Guard should cultivate the spirit of socializing, healthy way of life, civil unity and social responsibility. Therefore, it seems to be a good idea to integrate the sport policy into the defence objectives. Of course this has nothing to do with the professional sport where the state should have negligent, if any interference.

It is possible to organize the system with very little costs. National sporting activities should be viewed not as professional sport but rather the one having broad national meaning and establishing a healthy way of life. Their function is to reveal gifted young men and women, and increase the spirit of competition within the population. Community level, regional and national levels should be the phases of annual competitions all over the country. Communities should be able to select the type of sport they are willing to participate. An obligatory sport can also exist, like e.g. racing on long distance.

CIVIL EDUCATION AND SKILLS DEVELOPMENT

It is desired that aside from sporting activities, equal attention is paid to intellectual games and competitions. Almost certainly, this should be done in close cooperation with the Ministry of Education, through active involvement of elementary and high schools. Community Development Centers should mostly assume coordination functions.

FORMS OF ENCOURAGEMENT

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It is very desired also, that competitiveness becomes integral concept of Georgia’s everyday life.

Winners of sporting and intellectual races should be praised by including them in socially important activities, delegating some responsibility to them, etc. This should be done in open, but without formalization, should be established as some good tradition.

Also, distinction must be made between active duty personnel and reserve force, and also within the reserve between professional and territorial ones; and also between the reserve and civil defence people. The tougher the role, the higher should be the benefits, and the higher the responsibility in all spheres of social life.

These attitudes should be clearly drafted and receive some degree of formalization.

CIVIL DEFENCE

The system of civil defence must prepare the citizens in:

- Urgent medical assistance

- Firefighting measures

- Action in times of emergency

This must be the unity of school classes and field exercises, obligatory to all from 12 and until 18. After this age, a smaller part continues to territorial reserve, while others stay with the civil defence system.

PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION

Community Development Centers may also undertake the role of professional education. This will increase the sense of utility of such centers, and of course, help the population find their place in a new environment.

Professional education may include essentials of financial management, project management, tourism infrastructure, marketing, handicrafts, etc.

RECRUITMENT OF CIVIL DEFENCE AND TERRITORIAL DEFENCE RESERVE

Civil Development Centers will be employed to engage 12-18 old citizens into sporting and intellectual competitions on community, regional and national levels. From 19 years, citizens will continue to either territorial reserve or the civil defence service. From 26 years, a citizen goes to the second category individual reserve and civil reserve, respectively. Former represents a source for professional reserve service in future. A citizen above 45 years of age will be considered a nominal (passive) reserve force.

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Table 2: Recruiting Civil and Territorial Reserve

Table 2: Recruiting Civil and Territorial Reserve PERSPECTIVE PLAN TO BUILD THE RESERVE SYSTEM In spite

PERSPECTIVE PLAN TO BUILD THE RESERVE SYSTEM

In spite of the fact that the above described plan has my full support, it is understandable also, that the country cannot stay without army and reserve until some plan is realized. Therefore, there should be some vision for the interim period too. As said, there are about 100 thousand former servicemen of the age appropriate for service within the reserve. I think the system should make use of these gentlemen for the very short term period, while start immediately to materialize the plans for the future.

Table 3: perspective plan to build the reserve system

Table 3: perspective plan to build the reserve system This table starts with “army reserve” which

This table starts with “army reserve” which is selected out of nearly 100 thousand former servicemen within the age limit which were mentioned earlier in this study. Their number should not exceed 5-10 thousand.

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As the program starts and new reservists are trained, army reserve becomes the professional paid reserve force (the first category individual reserve). In other words, the first category individual reserve in future will be the active component of the professional reserve force.

The second category of individual reserve will be formed by those retired from territorial defence (because they have reached an age limit of 25), and also by those retired from the first category individual reserve (due to same age reasons).

The third category will be formed of the same men, after reaching the established the age limit of 45.

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FINAL WORDS

Small and ever declining number of population is a major challenge for Georgia and its defence. Population is the most significant asset that the nation may possess, and its size, health, education, values, vision, energy and muscles are the functions and representations of a nation.

Declining population shows the crisis of many of these functions. It is related with not only social and economic conditions but also mental and physical sides of the nation’s life.

Traditionally, many think government’s responsibility is to pay bills: bills for health, for education, etc. But the government’s responsibility is not to mirror the nation’s sentiments but rather the problems, and be able to give relevant response to them. Hence, the question is what a relevant response is.

The government spending should be necessarily strategic, not necessarily popular. The problem is that unpopular steps erode the government’s approval rates and make the governments pay bills which, in the end, kill nations, bring them to stagnation. Therefore, the good government is the one who resists these popular pressures.

Only durable solutions, focused on the development of the nation’s core element - its population can bring better future. Development happens by advancing the functions, but addressing the problem in its core, not by managing the surfacing consequences. Security and development cannot arrive without proper authors; there are functions of the society.

The same is true for the defence system. Especially the total defence system cannot be built without a strong support of the society. The problems which we tried to identify in this study show that the task is really a titanic one, but there is no other choice seen on the horizon. Attempts of the past, namely to familiarize the masses with the weapons, did not and could not yield positive results. Future policies must be multi-purpose and multi-tasking, but all those tasks should be integrated into one vision of the nation and its future.

Andro Barnovi 21 September, 2010

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GRAPHS AND TABLES

Table 1: Main Functions of Community Development Centers

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Table 2: Recruiting Civil and Territorial Reserve

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Table 3: perspective plan to build the reserve system

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Figure 1: Changes in Numbers of Georgia's Population, 1989-2005

9

Figure 2: Size of Population in the Countries of the Region

9

Figure 3: Population Growth Rates

9

Figure 4: Population Structure in Regional States (By age and gender)

10

Figure 5: Percentage of 15-64 age population, regional States (2009)

10

Figure 6: Real size 15-64 age population, regional States (2009)

11

12

Figure 8: Number of researchers by countries and fields of research

13

Figure 9: Number of researchers per 100 000 citizen, by countries and fields of research

14

Figure 10: total number of researchers, by countries

14

Figure 11: total number of researchers relative to population, by countries

15

Figure 12: number of researchers in the fields of engineering and technologies

15

Figure 13: researchers in the field of natural sciences

15

Figure 14: Volume of GDP in the Caucasus Nations, compared w/EU and USA

18

Figure 15: World Defence Expenditure, 1988-2009

19

Figure 16: Increase in Defence Spending, 1996-2005

19

Figure 17: Changes in Defence Expenditure, 2003-2009 (SIPRI)

20

Figure 18: Defence Expenditure 2003-2009, South Caucasus (SIPRI)

21

Figure 19: Modeling Georgian Army, 2007 VS 2010

21

22

Figure 21: US Army Model, 5 parameters (2009)

22

Figure 22: Changes in Georgian Army Model (Real Volumes)

23

Figure 23: Changes in Budget Components, 2005-2010

23

Figure 24: Changes in component share in total budget, 2005-2010

24

Figure 25: Defence Spending, 2005-2010 ($1000)

24

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