Excerpt from Stanislav Lakoba's ''Двуглавый орел и традиционная Абхазия'' (Double-headed eagle, traditional Abkhazia)
In the suppression of the last pockets of resistance in the Caucasus, Georgian militia, loyal servants of the autocratic state, played a significant role. Together with the Russian troops, they took part in the victory parade at Krasnaya Polyana on 21 May 1864. And on 9 June, as a crowd gathered, Tiflis Marshal of the Nobility, Dmitri Kipiani, greeted the Governor of the Caucasus, Grand Duke Mikhail Nikolaevich Romanov, with the words:
I slept badly in the Hotel Ritsa in Abkhazia. I had an unsettling dream in which I walked through an old house with an elderly Stalin, muttering malevolently to himself. In the morning, wondering who had disturbed my sleep, I had a long list of suspects from the other world.
Thomas de Waal is a Senior Associate for the Caucasus at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington. The Caucasus is often depicted as a region of peoples locked in enduring and invariant nationalist enmity. The reality is more complex and therefore more hopeful, says Thomas de Waal.