Blind Refugees and Dirty Disco in Georgia

The disco-combo Stephane and 3G [სტეფანე დ 3G] emerged triumphant as Georgia’s 2009 Eurovision entry last night. Here is a video of the winning song, “We don’t wanna put in.”

Not only a catchy disco pop tune, it also contains a not-so-subtle message to Vladimir Putin, the former President and current Prime Minister of Russia. The lyrics:

We don’t wanna put in
The negative move
It’s killin’ the groove.
I’m a-try to shoot in
Some disco tonight
Boogie with you.

Catch the reference? Particularly amusing is that Russia is the host for the 2009 Eurovision Awards contest after winning last year’s event in Serbia. Russia’s tightly controlled media rarely voices dissension. With today’s “not-guilty” verdict in the Anna Politkovskaya case, it’s not a surprise why. But this May, people all over Russia [along with millions from the rest of Europe] will watch these Georgian woman and a man with fake moustache and enormous sideburns frolic on stage, making fun of their leader.

The political situation is still pretty tense after the recent conflict between the two countries over Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia. And Russians, not known for their sense of humor, might not take this well. There have been outlandish cases of violence occurring against people from the Caucasus in the streets of Moscow even before military conflict.

What effect will this really have on the relationship between the two countries? Arguably none. Last year’s Georgian Eurovision contestant was a blind refugee from Abkhazia, another breakaway region. Diana Gurtskaya sings “Peace Will Come”:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_2z7RD1Xe6M]

The breakaway lyrics:

Look, the sky is crying cold bitter tears
Weeping for the people lost in fear
While we fight for nothing, my eyes run dry
Are you still so blind to ask me why?
Why?

Say it out loud: peace will come

We’ll see about that… [мы увидим…]

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gRXHFMPkcfk]

open