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Eduard Shevardnadze
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    (January 25, 1928-July 7, 2014)
    Attended Kutaisi Pedagogical Institute
    Joined the Communist Party (1948)
    Member of the rubber-stamp legislature of the Soviet Union (1959-1968)
    Minister of Internal Affairs for Georgia (1968-1972)
    Secretary of the Georgian Communist Party (1976-1985)
    Soviet Politburo member (1985)
    Soviet Foreign Minister (1985-1990, 1991)
    Chairman of State Council and later President of Georgia (1992-2003)
    Founded his own political party (1993)
    Survived three assassination attempts
    Deposed in a popular uprising (November 2003)
    Nickname is 'White Fox'
    His fall from power was caused by widespread corruption and two elections (2000, 2003) that were criticized worldwide as being rigged.
    Most of his political career was in a communist country.
    The collapse of his government is a disgraceful end to an otherwise distinguished career.
    Georgia remained one of the poorest ex-Soviet nations during his tenure as president.
    His name is very, very, hard to spell.
    Most people had no idea who he is or what country he is from until he left office.
    He resigned as president in Georgia instead of using force to try and remain in power.
    When Germany invited him to live there after he resigned from the presidency, he said: 'Although I am very grateful for the invitation from the German side, I love my country very much and I won't leave it.'
    He was a moderate voice in the Soviet government, favoring arms-reduction treaties, closer relations with the US, and additional political and economic freedoms.
    He attacked and defeated separatists in Georgia, at great risk to his personal safety (he was under constant threat of assassination).
    Despite his bad reputation, he left a true democracy in Georgia.

Credit: Wang

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