Unadmitted republic where clannish regime cancels elections, overthrowns and keeps under arrest the legally chosen president, breaks up political meetings, blocks the boarders, arrests and beats oppositionists, trying to keep the power no matter how high the cost is - how does it feel to come here?
Anyone who comes to Tskhinvali for work should obtain accreditation. The customs officers work hard here. They check each bus, but checking one bus goes faster than checking one journalist without accreditation. Central Election Commission is not going to make the same mistakes as during the December elections. They said one vote was priced at 1000 rubles (33 USD), but nobody told who was willing to buy the votes. However police of South Ossetia denies this information, of course.
"Thank you, Russia!"
Roksky tunnel is a symbolic place, it's not only the boarder between the countries, it's the boarder between the worlds. You feel it physically. On one side is some kind of state: with traffic laws, necessity to fasten belts, notice at the customs "Do not offer gifts!", boarder control, cars examination... the feeling that it works, maybe no so good, but still it does.
On the other side... even no traffic rules... customs is not even mentioned... No state at all. But strong, centuries-old traditions of the Caucasian community.
Everything works only at the level of personal relations and generally accepted standards of behaviour. And only they do not let the powerless republic fall into endless chaos.
Two worlds, two systems, opposite to each other.
Both states, however, give all chances to their citizens for realization any suicidal ideas. Care about safety on roads is like liberal stupidity. Wreaths and tombstones are everywhere.
There are some power structures despite the absence of any state institutions. Their main task is not keeping people safe, of course. They protect power from the angry people. And without state the clannish power acts simply and unpretentiously.
Tamarasheni - a Georgian eclave that has been almost fully ruined. Here and there one may see signs "Occupied", some kind of privatizing... What happens here is sometimes strange, for example on the place of a former Georgian movie theatre they built .. a swimming pool. What can be more necessary in a ruined city than a pool?
Roads in Tskhinvali is a mystery too. Recently one could see high quality asphalt coating but only in three years these nice roads were totally spoiled. The coating fully degraded. In rainy weather the city resembles a huge swamp. However they still try to change the situation.