Actors Involved in the Discreditation Campaign Against President Zourabichvili after the Announcement of the Impeachment Proceedings

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On September 1, 2023, the ruling Georgian Dream party initiated the impeachment proceedings against President Salome Zourabichvili. Irakli Kobakhidze, the chairman of the party, stated that the President had grossly violated the Georgian Constitution and had planned a series of foreign visits without the government’s consent.

The issue of Salome Zourabichvili’s impeachment triggered discussions and harsh criticism of the President on social media, as well as a discrediting campaign by pro-government Facebook pages, anti-liberal and pro-Kremlin accounts. Ageist and sexist forms of discrimination were also used. The following was revealed:

  • 12 anonymous Facebook pages/accounts involved in the campaign to discredit Salome Zourabichvili, 9 of which are anonymous pages/accounts that discredit the opposition and support the government.
  • Four of the pro-government pages (Ar agarevinebt, Political Satire, Archive, Agentura) had sponsored posts against Salome Zourabichvili.

The following Facebook pages were involved in the campaign to discredit Salome Zourabichvili on social media:

Discrediting posts and visual manipulations 

Various types of visual material about Salome Zourabichvili were shared on social media by both pro-government and anti-liberal accounts. Pro-government expert Gia Abashidze shared in the Facebook group “Citizen” a card depicting the Constitution of Georgia and Salome Zourabichvili. The latter’s photo is accompanied by the caption “Cons-Tututsia.” (Tututsi means a fool in Georgian).

vin chaertho prezidentis diskreditatsiis kampaniashi Actors Involved in the Discreditation Campaign Against President Zourabichvili after the Announcement of the Impeachment Proceedings

The pro-government anonymous Facebook page “Ar Agarevinebt” published a card on which, along with the photo of Salome Zourabichvili, one of the characters from the movie “EuroTrip” can be seen saying the famous phrase “Mi Scusi..” The card has the following caption: “Mi Scusi “Madame” Salobie (bean restaurant)”. The photo collage of the EuroTrip actor and Zourabichvili was also published by the Facebook page Reality.

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In an attempt to discredit Zourabichvili, the Facebook page “Ar Agarevinebt” also published a video titled “Salome Impeachmentashvili,” which shows footage of Zourabichvili running. Nika Gvaramia, the former general director of Mtavari Arkhi TV, can be heard swearing in the video.

vin chaertho prezidentis diskreditatsiis kampaniashi2 Actors Involved in the Discreditation Campaign Against President Zourabichvili after the Announcement of the Impeachment Proceedings

Anonymous Facebook page “Agentura (Agents)” published a card combining the faces of Salome Zourabichvili and Salome Samadashvili. According to the page, they realized Irakli Kobakhidze’s statement, where the chairman of Georgian Dream says about Zourabichvili that she has fallen to the level of politician Salome Samadashvili. In the second post published by the same page, Salome Zourabichvili’s  remarks end with the phrase of an infectious disease hospital employee, “she does not feel well, does not feel well.”

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Anti-liberal and pro-Russian accounts (1, 2) also spread the discrediting visual material of Salome Zourabichvili. The Facebook page “Conservative Wing” associated with the Conservative Movement published Zourabichvili’s photo with the caption: “Grandma will end badly.” In the photo, Irakli Kobakhidze, the chairman of Georgian Dream, can be seen in the window. A photo of Salome Zourabichvili was published on the page publicist.ge, which is associated with Irakli Jankarashvili, the supporter of the Alliance of Patriots, with the following caption: “What do you think about Madame Kuku.” 

Ermile Nemsadze, a former soldier, spread a Facebook live about Salome Zourabichvili. Nemsadze referred to Zourabichvili with insulting words: “She married his son’s godfather”; “This stupid woman has her mission in Georgia”; “Her main mission is to trigger unrest in Georgia that will drag Russia into a great Caucasian war; that is why she is doing her best, wandering and holding consultations.”

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In addition, the pro-Kremlin newspaper “Georgia & World” published an article by journalist Levan Gabashvili on the impeachment of Salome Zourabichvili. Speaking about Zourabichvili, Gabashvili refers to a discriminatory form – sexism, and calls the President “a capricious woman”: 

Levan Gabashvili, Georgia & World:“Yes, what the President [Salome Zourabichvili] is doing is harmful to the country’s interests, and no matter how much she claims that she is traveling to Europe for the western future of the country, she actually leaves the impression of a capricious woman and defames the country…”

There is also a form of age discrimination (ageism) in the article:

Levan Gabashvili, Georgia & World, September 4: “[Salome] Zourabichvili behaves like a capricious child. Do you remember the Georgian wisdom that in old age, grandfathers and grandmothers behave like their grandchildren? I cannot tell you whose tune Salome is dancing to, but…”

 

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Sponsored posts 

After the announcement of the plans to impeach Salome Zourabichvili, a number of posts against the President were sponsored on social media. The Facebook page პოლიტიკური სატირა / Political Satire sponsored a post stating that Zourabichvili had insulted the presidency and blatantly violated the Georgian constitution, which is the legal basis for her impeachment. The Facebook page “Ar agarevinebt” sponsored two posts about Zourabichvili with the following titles: “Salome Impeachmentashvili” and “Mi Scuzi Madam Salobie.” Also, the Facebook page არქივი – Archive and POSTV – ანალიტიკა sponsored the video of Zurab Japaridze, the founder of “Girchi – More Freedom”, filmed in 2019, in which the politician speaks about the impeachment of Salome Zourabichvili. “Ar agarevinebt” also sponsored a collage of videos of Shalva Natelashvili, the leader of the Labor Party, shot in 2019 and 2023. The Facebook page “Agentura” sponsored a card on which the faces of Salome Zourabichvili and Salome Samadashvili are combined.

shrillanka3 Actors Involved in the Discreditation Campaign Against President Zourabichvili after the Announcement of the Impeachment Proceedings

shrillanka4 Actors Involved in the Discreditation Campaign Against President Zourabichvili after the Announcement of the Impeachment Proceedings

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It is worth noting that in addition to the sponsored discrediting campaign, the anonymous pro-government Facebook pages were involved in a coordinated campaign to spread posts against Salome Zourabichvili.

After the announcement of the plans to impeach Salome Zourabichvili, anonymous pro-government and anti-opposition Facebook pages (პოლიტიკური სატირა / Political Satire, Political Grave N5) and accounts (Terenti Gldaneli, Dream Wins) published a post with identical content and visuals about the fairness of the impeachment. According to the post, Zourabichvili grossly violated the country’s supreme legal document, insulted the presidency and blatantly violated the Georgian Constitution, which is the legal basis for her impeachment. In addition, the post is accompanied by a photo of Salome Zourabichvili with the caption: “If you think Zourabichvili deserves to be removed by impeachment, share!” It is noteworthy that Guram Palavandishvili, founder of the Society for Children’s Rights and one of the leaders of the homophobic groups, also shared the post published by one of the accounts.

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The pro-government Facebook page “Leader 41” published a post about the violation of the Constitution. Davit Tordia, the page admin, writes that the President’s behavior showed disrespect for the law, the state and the Georgian people.

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Messages against MEPs 

Current and former members of the European Parliament (Viola Von Cramon, Markéta Gregorová, Rasa Juknevičienė, Miriam Lexmann, Andrius Kubilius, Rebecca Harms) reacted to Georgian Dream’s initiative to launch the impeachment proceedings against Salome Zourabichvili and strongly criticized it. In this context, the pro-government experts accused the MEPs of distancing Georgia from Europe by cooperating with the opposition. In addition, the pro-government experts expressed their doubts that the “message box” protecting Salome Zourabichvili was written in the same office, and that the MEPs did not see any problem in gross violation of the Constitution.

MEPs prevent us from getting closer to Europe

Gia Abashidze, expert: “The Georgian Dream team defends the inviolability of the Constitution, while the EU candidate status is sabotaged by the opposition of the National Movement and its foreign lobbyists. How many times should marginal radicals lustrate themselves by repeating the same destructive phrases? Disgraceful subjects have established themselves as participants of the cheap chapiteau.” 
Irakli Lataria, expert: “We have never been so close to Europe and yet how they obstruct us in everything. Then they will say, why was the law on foreign agents necessary? Why and that’s why… the President of Georgia violated the Constitution and instead of reprimanding her, they started to criticize the Georgian Dream government. Everyone will be exposed to the end in the coming days.”
Nino Pochkhua, expert: “I congratulate Ms. Salome on being a member of the network of agents working against Georgia. Now everything is clear. Now who will tell me that Ms. Salome is not a stateless agent, look who defended her unconstitutional behavior, again those bribed MEPs who, with their statements, undermine our European future.”

MEPs act in concert with the opposition and have the same message box

Gia Abashidze, expert: “A well-known agentocracy has been put into action to protect Salome Zourabichvili, a violator rather than a guarantor of the Constitution. It is noteworthy that the stateless subjects repeat the same message and the impression is created that the ‘message box’ was written in the same office and then distributed.”
Levan Nikoleishvili, expert: “These are the people for whom the lobbyists financed by Saakashvili’s mother, Giuli, write the texts of the resolutions and then read them out in a harsh manner with one voice. Bravo to Georgian Dream for giving them a hard time by announcing the impeachment proceedings. We have repeatedly seen these shameful and degraded subjects so shocked-outraged-concerned. Now, imagine that after Zourabichvili’s impeachment they might lose their voice and be unable to speak.”
Gia Gabritchidze, expert: “The texts of all the stateless people match one by one and it is clear how they understand the Constitution, the national interests and the responsibility of the guarantor of the implementation of the Constitution to fulfill the supreme law of the country. I would have just laughed at the shock of Markéta Gregorová because I understood that her “shock” would be followed by the “indignant concern” of Kubilius. I am sure that they are standing in a “live queue” like those ready to run down from Mtatsminda and invent some nonsense. These people could not get out of the mindset when a certain political position represented “Narushilovka” (a special permit that exempts law enforcement officials from responsibility for violating certain regulations). It is time for everyone (both outside and inside) to understand that Georgia is not a “Prakhadnoi Dvor” (thoroughfare) and the protection of the Constitution is first of all the supreme duty of the President of Georgia.”
Edisher Gvenetadze, expert: “As soon as Georgian Dream’s decision to impeach the President was announced, the so called liberal-lobbyist-bribe takers in Europe immediately started to rush around! They are so fed up with the looted money here and they are so “recruited” that even a single click is enough for people like Gregorová, Glucksmann, Kubilius, Fotyga, Cramon to start criticizing something, but what? They do not know!… Everything is clear – the darkest forces of the world, to which, unfortunately, these European parliamentarians belong, are acting with an instruction written in the same office, the main goal of which is to change the government in Georgia by violent means and to drag the country into war!”
Nino Pochkhua, expert: “How can you compare with Irakli Kobakhidze in the knowledge of the Constitution of Georgia, but Kubilius, Gregorová dare to do it. They dare because their patrons have ordered them to do so. They are all controlled from one room. This too will pass. Let us build a legal state!”

Salome Zourabichvili has been the target of discrediting campaigns on multiple occasions in the past. For example, the critical speech of President Salome Zourabichvili at the ceremony dedicated to Georgia’s Independence Day on May 26 was followed by discrediting posts from anonymous Facebook pages associated with the Georgian Dream. Also, after the pardon of Nika Gvaramia, the general director of Mtavari Arkhi TV, a number of manipulated photos were spread to discredit Zourabichvili. For more information on these issues, see the Myth Detector articles: 

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