On Wednesday, a fight broke out in Georgia's parliament over the dispute in Ukraine, where a heavyweight boxing champion is leading a revolution. Fights happen in governments all the time, and they are all weirdly great.
Old men in suits are not supposed to engage in fisticuffs, kickticuffs, or choketicuffs. And yet sometimes governing is so difficult, so heated, so divisive that these elected officials, these leaders of men, devolve into monkeys slinging poop and punches at one another. It's our job, as the world's electorate, to watch and critique their form.
Unfortunately today's outburst was one of the worst parliamentary fights in recent memory. The BBC explains what precipitated the disagreement:
Giorgi Baramidze, a member of Georgia's opposition National Movement party, urged members to back the motion, supporting anti-government protesters who are angry at President Viktor Yanukovych's refusal to sign a political and trade deal with the European Union.
Soso Jachviani of the ruling Georgian Dream Party reacted angrily to the plan and a fight ensued.
Without a doubt, the highlight happened at the very beginning when Jachviani walks over to Baramidze and kicks him square in the nuts. The fight, if you want to call it that, went all downhill from there. Lots of old men doing the "hold me back, bro" move while retreating backwards and sideways. Something that resembles a punch gets thrown every once in a while, but nothing solid connects.
4. Ukraine I
Those Ukranians seem to like their parliamentary brawls. They appear on this short list three times, because there has consistently been one decent physical altercation a year for the last three years. According to BoingBoing, here is Adam Martynyuk, the vice speaker of the Ukrainian parliament, putting his deputy Oleg Lyashko into a "vulcan nerve pinch and ninja movie pressure point manueover" after the lesser official said something offensive to his boss. Lyashko had asked to make a speech and was rebuffed. The ninja move comes first, and then you'll notice Martynyuk goes for Vulcan nerve punch after his victim starts to lose some of his faculties. His ability to swiftly finish his opponent is admired, but this is a disappointingly one-sided affair.
3. Ukraine II
This is Ukraine's contribution from 2012, best explained by The New York Times, and, admittedly, it's slightly disappointing. Punches land later, softly. This fight gets points for the violent face-washing, and how it takes five people to restrain the one Hulk-like politician who wants to go on a violent rampage.
2. Ukraine III
Now this is Ukraine's best contribution to this list, from this year, before the revolution began. The highlight is when, in a scrum, lawmakers jostle to bonk the one guy over the head. One eager beaver seems to take out a month's worth of pent up aggression on the poor chap with a flurry of hammerfists. The offense: a speech delivered in Russian.
The Venezuelans know how to throw hands, though. Shortly after former President Hugo Chavez died and his hand-picked successor Nicholas Maduro was elected, in 2013, members of the opposition refused to acknowledge Maduro as their leader. Chaos ensued. The thugs in colorful warm-up suits are allegedly security guards who entered the fray. The whole video deserves to be seen, because these are real politicians throwing real punches. Apparently one person was hit over the head with a chair, like on professional wrestling.
BONUS Remember when Rob Ford barrelled over that one lady? That was great. Let's never for get that. His violent moment wasn't a fight, per se, but it was violent enough to warrant mention because he attacked a defenseless old woman. Just the kind of guy Ford is.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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