Georgian Dream More on the Back Foot with Russia, Says Ex-U.S. Official

“Moscow has actually succesfully reasserted itself as the dominant political force and security provider in Eurasia. In contrast with Ukraine currently, the other former Soviet states have either been pressured into closer political and security relations with Moscow, or into a more neutral, marginal international status,” said Fiona Hill, former U.S. National Security Council official.

Bringing Georgia as one of the key examples, the former official told U.S. Senate’s Helsinki Commission yesterday that “14 years after Russia’s 2008 invasion the current [Georgian Dream] Government is more on the back foot than it has been before, treading very carefully with Russia more so than its predecessors.”

She also noted that “Georgia’s former President Mikheil Saakashvili, who was a perennial thorn in Moscow’s side now sits in jail in Tbilisi after an ill-advised return to Georgia in October 2021.”

“Although Russia cannot claim direct credit for this, Russian officials nonetheless and commentators frequently use Saakashvili and his fate as a cautionary tale for the rest of the region, including Ukraine,” added the former U.S. official.

Hill is currently a a Senior Fellow in the Center on the United States and Europe in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings Institution, a Washington-based think tank. 

In 2017-2019 she served as the Deputy Assistant to the President and Senior Director for European and Russian affairs on the National Security Council under the Trump Administration.

Prior to that, from 2006 to 2009 she served as the National Intelligence Officer for Russia and Eurasia at the National Intelligence Council under the Bush and Obama Administrations. 

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