It seems that one Georgian television station may have made a serious error in judgment in its search for ratings. As part of a new talkshow, it broadcast a fake report, saying that Russian tanks had entered the capital and that President Mikheil Saakashvili had been killed. All somewhat believable, bearing in mind the history of animosity between Russia and Georgia.
Once viewers found out they had been the victims of TV trickery, they converged on the station, protesting angrily.
One angry lady shouted: “Just tell me, how could they do this? It’s disgusting!”
Another man was equally outraged: “When the situation is so tense, it’s a criminal act to make jokes on these topics. They should answer for this, in court.”
Saakashvili sent a spokeswoman to rebuke the show, saying viewers should have been warned on-screen and in advance that the report was not real.
For many Georgians, it stirred up memories of the conflict over South Ossetia between the two countries a year and a half ago, which displaced 200,000 people.