Saturday, August 16, 2008

The Resurgence of the Bear

This past week, for the first time since the breakup of the USSR in 1991, Russia has used direct military force against one of its neighbors. Some people are inclined to believe that the US and its allies are somehow responsible, or otherwise make excuses, for Russia's actions in Georgia. If there are those of you out there that want to believe that, that's fine--I am not going to stop you. But first, you owe it to yourself to consider the facts.

Let's be clear about what has happened in Russia. All opposition parties have been liquidated from the Duma; all local government has been obliterated. Political opponents of the Kremlin, like KGB defector Alexander Litvinenko and investigative journalist Anna Politkovskaya have been murdered, the former being poisoned with $10 million of a rare radioactive substance known as polonium. Nobody in Russia has been charged, let alone punished for giving the orders to kill them, or for carrying out those senseless deeds (the death warrants are widely suspected to have originated from the Kremlin, perhaps from Putin himself). Russian military spending has surged dramatically in recent years. Russia rates as 'not free' under the widely respected Freedom House's ratings for 2007, the most recent year available, with rights and liberties rapidly eroding.

Let’s be clear about what has happened in Georgia. Russia gave diplomatic recognition and support to a breakaway region of another country without international agreement, massed troops on the border, repeatedly violated Georgian airspace, shot down a Georgian aircraft, fired missiles into Georgian territory, and attempted to assassinate a major Georgian official in the region. Then it goaded the region into launching an attack on Georgian forces, and when Georgia finally responded with a limited strike against the region, after more than a year of provocation during which Georgia responded only with diplomatic protests, Russia invaded with over 30,000 troops within 72 hours and seized the region, including the use of strategic bombers and 300 other combat aircraft that destroyed civilian apartment blocks. Now, the breakaway region is engaged in massive pogrom-style attacks on Georgian civilians. The control and coordination required for such sizable military operations strongly suggests premeditation and long-term planning on the part of the Russian authorities.

Now, how is any of this the fault of the United States or of President Bush? Could someone tell me again, please?

Those trying to justify Russia's oppression and aggression come off looking like morons or maniacs--or both.


donplaypuks® said...

You will note that world stock markets are not tumbling at this Georgia vs Russia chicken fight .

The truth is no one really cares and regard it as another of those border tussles like those between India & Pakistan re Kashmir.

And rightly so. Why should the US be drawn into it. No reason at all. For the moment it is commie vs commie and most countries take th eview that they should sort out their own shit.

Anonymous said...

It's not "Bush's fault"

It's the USA's:

Anonymous said...

Oh dear, PI's forgotten to take his medication. Sounds like Saars kivli.


Anonymous said...

I think you are right don.
We have to look back to how NATO interfered with the Bosnian situation, when Clinton was forced to take sides.
There was some justification to stopping mass killings, but was it NATO or Europe's business?
They made it so.
Likewise Serbia.
NATO and Europe Liberals allowed a majority Muslim Albanian population to grab Kosovo, which was Serbian territory, Serbians are Orthodox Christian of course, so no points in supporting their rights, eh?
If the USA and Europe can interfere with National boundaries and support one side against another, regardless of the wishes of the neighbouring countries, why can't Russia take the same principal as NATO and UK/Europe did?
Who is being biased?
Pot calling kettle black, it seems.
The majority of Ossetians are Russian origin, the same logic we used gives Russia the rights to follow suit.
So who is going to take on Russia and start another war in Europe?
Isn't Iraq and Afghan enough to be getting on with?
If nearby Chechnya falls back to open civil war between Russian and Muslim Chechens, is NATO going to invade Chechnya on behalf of the Mudjhadeen, whilst still fighting their friends, the Taliban in Afghanistan.
It's a mess.

Anonymous said...

Is there some connection here, with US missile deployment on borders of Russia, in Poland?
Do I hear echoes of Russian missile deployment in Cuba?
If America is this confused, then you probably will elect Obama!