This article examines the apparent paradox of the coupling of the Rose Revolution in Georgia with an upsurge of ethnic unrest. The author argues that Georgia’s ethnic and religious minority enclaves have been hurt by the contradictory policy outcomes of the Saakashvili regime’s major goals (viz., the devolution of power to minorities, anti-corruption reform, and state capacity building). The anti-corruption campaign in particular disproportionately struck at the livelihoods of ethnic minorities. It also led to systematic discrimination against groups with poor knowledge of the Georgian language. State building has also been carried out at the expense of local and regional powers, whence the rebuilding of the Georgian Army had deleterious effects on Abkhazia and South Ossetia.