Our Analytics 14 august — 13:29

Ilgar Mammadov will be imprisoned again for beer putsch (Our editorial)

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BY EYNULLA FATULLAYEV

Ilgar Mammadov received the long-awaited freedom. The sinister clank and thunder of the prison gate, which was heard behind the self-styled leader of Azerbaijani liberals, coincided with the onset of a new milestone: the decline and disintegration of Azerbaijani liberalism. Ilgar Mammadov appeared right after the onset of a new version of the Azerbaijani protest: liberal-shiism, about the origins of which we reasoned in the days of the apogee of senseless and ruthless Ganja green revolt.

Ilgar Mammadov walked along the streets of a new city for him, as if he did not feel the country under him. On the screen appeared again the lost, not self-assured, wilted, or maybe just tired of a long imprisonment leader of a handful of realists, who lost the sense of reality. First impression? Not only embraces with his beloved wife after a long and painful separation, not only groaning after the painful years spent in prison, and not even a vividly pernicious narcissism...

First photo of Ilgar Mammadov after his release

Ilgar Mammadov, looking like a battered Kerensky, is again in captivity of romantic illusions, giving birth to the fairy-tale world of the eternal war of the Reds and Whites. "Glory to the Republicans!" proclaims the leader of the realists, unaware that he was arrested in one country, and released in a completely different one. Not only Mammadov, but also all of us are separated from the Meydan attraction by eternity.

Ilgar Mammadov turned out to be not only a weak and, to put it mildly, non-charismatic leader, but also a mediocre analyst. He sincerely believed that the events in Ismayilli in 2013 would become a forerunner for the great Azerbaijani revolutionary fire, and the flame of the uprising would spread to all cities and towns. He sincerely believed that American Ambassador Morningstar came to Baku with the sole purpose of overthrowing Ilham Aliyev. He sincerely believed that he was invited to Halifax -- a closed American military base -- with one single goal: to send in a sealed trailer to the flaming revolutionary Azerbaijan... Ilgar Mammadov was unable to objectively calculate the political situation and the geopolitical spectrum and began rushing headlong from one social-protest village to another, playing on the notorious theory of ignition timing. Finally, Ilgar Mammadov did not understand his people, a priori confident in the exceptional role of political organizations as a source of the origin of the revolutionary process. After all, a commoner, disappointed in all manifestations of democracy, whether liberalism or social democracy, found an outlet in the only hypostasis of an expressed protest: Shiite reactionism. Ilgar Mammadov does not even realize that the most rabid part of the liberal forces of Elchibey's order, having built themselves into the formidable columns of the Shiite mosque, hopes for the scenario of "Nardaranism", a rural rebellion in the spirit of Yemelyan Pugachov. And suddenly there appears, falling from the Eurimaifan overcoat, Ilgar, with his vulgar syllogistic of the Azerbaijani Meydan. And he is muttering indistinctly, shyly, uncertainly, under the nose in broken Azerbaijani language pathetically popular-republican slogans. After all, he could have taken a pause, looked around, thought and decided at least this time to properly assess the situation! They say that the prison brings wisdom, but not in the case of Ilgar Mammadov, who believes in his own messianism, who calls journalists to a press conference... And this is in the age of social networks, when presidents and politicians break into homes through the Facebook window.

Ilgar's beer putsch

Undoubtedly, Ilgar Mammadov will remain in his role. Assigned mission. The past cannot wait. Ilgar Mammadov was trained as a lever of pressure on the Azerbaijani government. He was gradually walking up the steps of the liberal hierarchy, gasping for anticipation of a momentary political revenge, which promised a confusion on the barricades of the "Azerbaijani spring".

Education in the Soros smithy at the Central European University in Budapest, work at the IMF and at the US Embassy, frequent heart-to-heart talks with Soros and work in his Fund, trips to the closed military base in Halifax... Finally, the creation of the revolutionary semi-legal informal organization "ReAL" . But Ilgar was not understood by his people. In 2010, the newly-made pro-Western politician lost the parliamentary elections with a bang. And he himself helplessly confessed his own defeat. Ilgar and the Azerbaijani people spoke different languages. And not because he was too far from the people. Rather, the people were too far from Mammadov.

During his short political activity Ilgar Mammadov managed to quarrel with all leading politicians from the opposition: he expressed curses against Isa Gambar, accused Etibar Mammadov of duplicity, sculpted Ali Karimli in an untidy image of a provincial in galoshes... Mammadov walked his own way, and went as he could. For a few years of activity a pathetic group of supporters gathered around Mammadov, which can be called like-minded people with great reserve.

In a small two-room headquarters, which looked like the office of an ordinary NGO, Mammadov was surrounded by several close comrades in grants and struggle for a brighter future. And in the summer of 2012, a theretofore loyalist to the authorities, a Westernizer from the office of Soros came to a strange conclusion: "The time has come!" Ilgar Mammadov climbed to the embrasure and began to storm one of the strongest power structures in the CIS. Some banal beer putsch. In Ismayilli, a handful of indignant people set fire to a hotel. Ilgar immediately rushed to a troubled village. And he began to urge transfering the flare from the one "Molotov cocktail" to the entire country. The fire was extinguished, and Ilgar was doomed to the fate of a Spanish republican on the galleys. That's how the leader of the failed beer putsch was doomed to long years of loneliness, deprivation and adversity. All this time he tirelessly appealed to the West: to impose sanctions against Azerbaijan, to punish the authorities under the Magnitsky list, to exclude the state from the European family... All this time the West was deaf. Then Ilgar broke out with accusatory speeches against the henchmen of imperialism: the same West again. The Americans maintained a long silence, and Europe limited itself to only one decree of the Strasbourg Court. The complaint of Ilgar Mammadov was put in a huge folder with unfulfilled decisions of the European Court of Human Rights. But the Azerbaijani authorities fulfilled all the orders of the European Court in the Mammadov case. As for his freedom, the European Court did not issue a decision on unconditional release of the prodigal prisoner. A little later, at the insistence of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, the scandalous Thorbjørn Jagland, known for his dubious ties with the Soviet KGB, the European Court adopted a second decision. The Supreme Court of Azerbaijan sent the case of Ilgar Mammadov to the firts instance for reconsideration. The court granted Ilgar Mammadov conditional freedom with a probationary period. Here you have a short background of a strange prisoner, squeaking people's republican slogans.

What's next? Of course, Ilgar Mammadov is the master of his own destiny. Of course, he can join liberal shiism or repeat the beer putsch, but if the self-styled leader of utopian liberalism again rushes to the barricades... Most likely, the authorities will have no other way than to return the instigator of the new trouble to the distant Nukha prison.

For Azerbaijan -- a small stable archipelago in the midst of a large, troubled ocean -- the fateful time of new challenges and threats is coming. Power and society are still taking bitter lessons after a criminal-religious, one might say, theo-criminal Ganja riot. And if Ilgar Mammadov, stupefied by the air of freedom, again begins to follow arduously in his old unrighteous path, he will not leave the government another choice...

But this time the West will certainly not help Ilgar!

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