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Georgia Removes "666" from ID Cards

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    http://www.eurasianet.org/node/67078 Georgia Removes 666 from ID Cards June 5, 2013 - 12:13pm, by Giorgi Lomsadze When Tea Tsulukiani became Georgia’s
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 26, 2013

      Georgia Removes "666" from ID Cards
      June 5, 2013 - 12:13pm, by Giorgi Lomsadze

      When Tea Tsulukiani became Georgia’s justice minister her task seemed
      tough, but straightforward: Take former corrupt officials to task and
      build an apolitical, widely trusted institution.

      She worked hard, and, finally, made a chilling discovery: Many of
      Georgia's government-issued personal IDs contain the number 666, which
      is, of course, the mark of the Beast; a phenomenon of the end times,
      according to the Bible's Book of Revelation.

      Tsulukiani hurried to share her find with the public. “I don’t mean to
      frighten believers, but tens of thousands of old IDs contain the number
      six three times in a row,” she said on June 4, Interpress reported. But
      fear not, she went on. Tsulukiani has vowed to make sure that Georgia's
      new, electronic ID cards will be free of the Beast and his number.

      Many Georgians refused to accept the new, smart ID cards after some
      Georgian Orthodox groups affirmed that the card could bear the stamp of
      the Antichrist. (The Georgian Orthodox Church itself, however, denied
      it.) Of particular concern were personal details, which, the thinking
      went, might come in handy for the Antichrist whenever he might choose to

      Tsulukiani has said that including information beyond name and date of
      birth would be optional.

      President Mikheil Saakashvili’s government had no patience to entertain
      such -- or, critics might charge, any -- public concerns about the
      cards. But the new, Georgian-Dream-led cabinet is eager to show that
      they're listening to voters -- particularly in a presidential election year.

      Georgia is rated as the most believing country in the South Caucasus. A
      2012 opinion poll showed that 67 percent of 2,502 respondents believe
      that God is directly involved in their personal affairs.

      With that background in mind, Tsulukiani, instead of arm-twisting
      Antichrist-wary citizens into accepting the controversial IDs, went to
      the Church to get a blessing for the cards in exchange for a promise to
      avoid the notorious 666.

      But many other Georgians, who plant their faces in their hands when
      watching a top official discuss such topics, believe that the government
      is going overboard with its inclusive ways. The fear is that pandering
      to such voters could strengthen the ultra-conservative factions in the
      Georgian Orthodox Church and its parishes. In Tbilisi, such clerics have
      led attacks on a Halloween party and, most recently, staged an attack on
      an anti-homophobia rally.

      How a top official evicting suspected demonic influences from
      identification cards will change that trend remains to be seen.
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