February 12, 2014

Up to a point, Lord Saakashvili

From the New York Times:
Czar Vladimir's Illusions 
By MIKHEIL SAAKASHVILI FEB. 12, 2014

NEW YORK — As the Winter Olympics begin in Sochi, a close Russian ally in Ukraine is suppressing and shooting pro-democracy protesters. 
One could be forgiven for thinking that the hour of triumph for autocrats and the retreat of democrats is at hand as the world gathers to celebrate the shining rule of Czar Vladimir. 
But do the Sochi Olympics really prove that President Vladimir V. Putin’s model of oil-fueled authoritarianism is the only one that can bring happiness and prosperity to Russia and the region?

Though my country, Georgia, has almost no oil, it might hold the answer....
When Russia was bidding to be host of the Olympics, it had enthusiastic Georgian support, as we believed holding the Games in Sochi would enhance chances for peace and improve relations. Instead, several months after the Kremlin won its bid to host the Olympics, Russia invaded Georgia. 

Up to a point, Lord Saakashvili. You started the 2008 war, in the fundamental sense of sending your tanks in a sneak invasion across the de facto boundary, after which you were promptly whomped by the surprised Russians.

You could argue that since the South Ossetian territory you invaded was part of the Republic of Georgia under the USSR, that you had the right to do that. But that would be like Anwar Sadat arguing that when he started the Yom Kippur War in October 1973 by crossing the Suez Canal and invading the Sinai, which Israel had occupied in 1967, he was being invaded by Israel. Instead, Sadat's view was, "Hell, yes, we started this war. We're proud of it."

Of course, the big difference was that Egypt's feat of arms in winning the first battle of the Yom Kippur War -- getting across the heavily fortified Suez Canal and destroying hundreds of Israeli tanks -- really was an impressive feat of arms. The national pride that beating the Israelis in one battle engendered in Egypt, even if it the war went badly for them after that, gave Sadat psychological space to make a deal with the Israelis at Camp David and get the whole Sinai back.

In contrast, the initial Georgian invasion against the small South Ossetian militia and a couple of dozen Russian "peacekeepers" was unimpressive and failed to achieve all its objectives. The subsequent flight back home when the real Russian army arrived through the Roki Tunnel under the Cacausus was humiliating. [I go over the underlying geographic realities behind this war in my new Taki's column.)

... As a result, Mr. Putin’s fate might well be decided in the cold streets of Kiev rather than on the balmy slopes of Sochi. 
Mikheil Saakashvili was president of Georgia from 2004 to 2013. He is now senior statesman at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

66 comments:

Anonymous said...

Will NY Times allow a rebuttal from Putin?

And how did Sakasvilly deal with protesters in his own country?

pate357 said...

I can't believe the NYT would publish this tie-chewing loon's patently dishonest nonsense. I can't believe Tufts University gave him a job.

RWF said...

The EU investigation into the 2008 war found that in the months preceding the war the Russians had repeatedly been shooting at the Georgians and had built up their forces.

Saakashvili was a fool to rise to the bait but the notion that Russia was the victim of an unprovoked surprise attack is just not true.

Anonymous said...

This is pure Russian propaganda. If Mexico declared San Diego part of Mexico and began issuing Mexican passports and guns to secessionists groups Steve would erupt in furor and call for the tanks. After all three days when Steve was trying to suggest that any Sochi terrorist attack would have US connections he admitted that Sourh Ostessia is part of Gerogia illegally occupied by Russia.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe the NYT would publish

don't know much about the NYT, do we?

Reg Cæsar said...

Saakashvili, Shalikashvili, Dzhugashvili, Biltmorashvili, Thomaswolfeashvili…
never trust anyone whose name ends in -ashvili.

Anonymous said...

http://theden.tv/2014/02/12/sochi-and-the-new-cold-war/#sthash.whxiDzyC.ZruvPq30.dpbs

KKK at Oberlin is nothing compared to 'gay holocaust' hysteria.

PS. During the Cold War, conservatives sometimes used homo issue to humiliate communism. Homosexuals had it bad behind the Iron Curtain, Cuba jailed homosexuals and quarantined HIV-infected people, and etc, etc, etc.
Though things were much worse for homos back then, leftists had a soft spot for Marxism and generally muted their criticism.
Now that Russia is neo-nationalist and pro-Christian, libs are shrieking about 'gay holocaust'.



Anonymous said...

Putin is more like Mussolini and Ataturk than Hitler or Stalin.

And if white Americans opened their eyes, they'd realized there's more to learn from him and agree with him than with the hostile elites that run the US and EU.

David said...

>Mikheil Saakashvili was president of Georgia from 2004 to 2013. He is now senior statesman at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.<

This is nuts. The leaders politicians dictators and murderers of the world have invaded academia and grabbed chairs and other important positions for themselves, from which they belch fiery propaganda in support of their regime or its heirs, as though such were objective scholarly analysis. We are doomed.

Will Putin become dean of Berkeley's political science department when he retires?

It was bad enough when W. Wilson went from being an unworldly college president to being a miserably out-of-touch, ideological POTUS. Now we've got the reverse situation - and this time involving foreign leaders.

Imagine Putin as dean of Georgia U (in USA) and Saakashvili landing a position as dean of Alabama. The Bulldog vs. Tide match that year - can you imagine it?

RWF said...

The EU fact finding report which I mentioned before is here. It is the most comprehensive examination of the war that I'm aware of and the facts are damning for Russia. In particular there was not merely a couple of dozen Russian peacekeepers present in fact there had been an:

"influx of volunteers or mercenaries from the territory of the Russian Federation to South Ossetia through the Roki tunnel and over the Caucasus range in early August, as well as the presence of some Russian forces in South Ossetia, other than the Russian JPKF battalion, prior to 14.30 hours on 8 August 2008.

Also it seems that the Russian air force started its operations against Georgian targets, including those outside South Ossetian administrative boundaries, already in the morning of 8 August, i.e. prior to the time given in the Russian official information. "

Anonymous said...

"EU fact finding report"

I don't doubt the report per se, but given EU is almost synonymous with NATO and given what NATO did to Libya, which isn't even a European country, isn't this like pot calling kettle black?

Anonymous said...

Of course, the worst thing a Russian political figure can be called is a "Czar". Bob Costas made that clear when he harped on about how Russia had suffered "under the Czars." No mention of Communism, of course.

Anonymous said...

First, when Georgians demonstrated against Saaksashvili, he sent cops to beat them up. There's video of that. Neither Putin nor Yanukovich has ever done that. Second, Saakashvili has fled Georgia. He had to give it up because he was term limited and everybody hated him. The new Georgian government was expected to try him for crimes. So he fled.

Anonymous said...

Wasn't this the same idiot who started eating his own tie? Maybe somebody smarter then me can establish the link?

Anonymous said...

@RWF: Nobody cares who is morally in the right between Georgia and Russia.

Some across the reactionary right favor Russia unquestioningly. Mainstream folks on the left and right oppose Russia unquestioningly. What really happens to South Ossetia is irrelevant. It's a morality play for people in the West.

"Tyrannical Russia invades tiny democratic neighbor--think of the gay Georgians who are soon to be oppressed!"
"Defender of Christendom Vladimir Putin bravely fights off the forces of EU-American liberal imperialism trying to throttle the last bastion of Christian civilization."

Anonymous said...

What really worries me is how that idiot McCain almost got us involved in this dustup.

Anonymous said...

I feel this attack on Georgia is almost Anti-American. After all, McCain has decreed that "We are all Georgians now" and that Russia dispute with Georgia was "The greatest international crisis since WW II".

Good thing we have that kind of cool, analytic thinking in the US Senate and not in the White House.

Anonymous said...

"This is pure Russian propaganda. If Mexico declared San Diego part of Mexico and began issuing Mexican passports and guns to secessionists groups..."

This is pure neocon propaganda. Ossetians and Georgians are two different ethnicities. During the Soviet period it didn't matter to what republic your area was assigned because everything was run from Moscow anyway. But after the dissolution of the union South Ossetians really, really didn't want to be ruled by Georgians, with whom they have nothing but old vendettas in common. Since North Ossetia was already legally within the Russian Federation, the South Ossetian people have looked to Russia for protection. Russia has magnanimously provided it. Nobody had to force South Ossetians to accept Russian passports. They asked for them.

Anonymous said...

In the post-Soviet space Saakashvili is often called "the tie-eater" because of this incident. Stress, I guess.

Anonymous said...

Here's a still of it.

Anonymous said...

Right dbag and the Mexican government wouldn't be forcing Mexican emigrants to accept passports too but they would still be violating our sovereignty. It's kind of like how when an illegal immigrant commits a crime he often looks to the Mexican government to protect him.

If we applied the logic of the Russophiles to Ukraine the EU and USA are are perfectly right to arm and assist and if necessary enter western Ukriane to "protect" it. I just want a simple explanation for why Russia can invade another sovereign country in supper of a secessionist movement but the US can't even support a non-secessionist protest. Putin makes me feel like no woman could doesn't cut it.

It's pretty clear a lot of people here don't know the facts about the situation. Steve does as he demonstrated four posts to go but hey when you have to shake the tin cup to support yourself you give the Russophiles what they want.

Anonymous said...

Saakashvili running away after seeing a plane in the sky during the Georgia-Russia war. Needless to say, it was a false alarm. The Russian forces never targeted him.

Reg Cæsar said...

We should send the dapper Charles French to Tbilisi to advise the man.

And send Pat and Vanna as well-- that city needs to buy a vowel.

Anonymous said...

Somebody should hook Steve up with the booking producers from Russia Today.

Anonymous said...

"He is now senior statesman at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy."

Ah, he is a courtier now in Massachusetts. Very appropriate.

Steve Sailer said...

RWF: read the Wikipedia article and follow the links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russia%E2%80%93Georgia_war

It turns out to be the same story the wire services carried immediately: Georgia sent about 10,000 men over the border all at once. The analogy to the Yom Kippur War is instructive.

Then, for about the next 2-3 days, the Bigfoot reporters and pundits tried to rewrite it into Russia invaded Georgia, which is what enough people remember that the S man can get away with stuff like this.

But then over the next couple of months the news reporters followed up with a careful investigation and, whaddaya know, the original stringers were right and the Bigfeet were wrong.

Anonymous said...

I've read that the -shvili ending means "son of". I'm assuming that the Saak part means Isaac. Georgia is a Christian country, so they use a lot of Biblical names there. Saakashvili is probably just the local version of Isaacson.

Anonymous said...

In regards to the comparison with Mexico, Ossetians have always lived in Ossetia and Georgians in Georgia. The ethnic boundaries are ancient. No one is replacing anyone there.

The leaders of the Soviet Union assigned South Ossetia to Georgia and North Ossetia to Russia because they did not want the country to consist of hundreds of republics. Lots of small ethnicities were included into the republics of large ones. The highest peaks of the Caucasus were chosen as the border between Russia and Georgia, and it just so happened that Ossetians lived on both sides of that divide.

Internal Soviet administrative borders were formalities anyway. They ceased being formalities when the union split up into 15 nations, many of them highly nationalistic. South Ossetians were understandably scared of Georgian nationalism. They're not Georgians. So they've looked to Russia for help.

Anonymous said...

Steve Sailer said...


It turns out to be the same story the wire services carried immediately: Georgia sent about 10,000 men over the border all at once.


Just in case anyone is confused when Steve says across the border he means across the border into South Ossetia which every nation but Russia and Venezuela recognizes as a legitimate part of Georgia. So Georgia sent troops across the border into their own nation. Additionally, if you look at the maps of the conflict you'll notice a bunch of large arrows extending southward from the other break away Republican which Russia has thuggishly carved out of Georgia. What you won't find is any red arrows. This is in Steve words "officially the territory of Georgia, but has been ruled by the Russian-supported breakaway Abkhazians for a couple of decades." In other words Russia troops advanced into Georgia from their illegally occupied positions in Abkhazia despite the fact that no Georgian troops crossed the "border" into Abkhazia. I'll add Steve's desciption of Abkhazia applies just as appropriately to South Ossteia.

In other words Georgian troops crossed the "border" kind of like how an Atzlan activist considers Ft. Hood across the Mexican border. Out of curiosity when Mexico tears up the Treaty of Guadalope Hidalgo and starts arming secessionist militia groups no one on these message boards is going to complain right.

This is what happens when you let your enemies pick your allies for you. If paleos keep supporting everyone the neo-cons oppose they are going to squander the little good will they've built up.

5371 said...

While Saakashvili still thought the war would be a glorious victory rather than a humiliating defeat, he boasted of having started it.
As for his article, whenever you read the phrase "pro-democracy protesters", you can stop reading.

Anonymous said...

Steve needs to stick to immigration and race. These foreign policy pieces are making him look an authoritarian stooge.

Anonymous said...

Russia is the only White country where the elite is trying to increase the White birth rate and there's nothing the US media hates more than White babies.

Anonymous said...

"The EU fact finding report"

Why would anyone believe an EU report?

Anonymous said...

> The leaders of the Soviet Union assigned South Ossetia to Georgia and North Ossetia to Russia because they did not want the country to consist of hundreds of republics.

No, the ethnic Georgian leader of the USSR at the time, Ioseb Besarionis dze Jugashvili (what a name -- Stalin is definitely easier to remember and easier to say), split Ossetia and gave South Ossetia and Abkhazia to Georgia. Like any Georgian, he hated the Abkhaz and Ossetians -- hell, he hated just about every other Caucasian nationality -- he even banished Chechens to Kazakhstan. There's no race war like a Caucasian race war!

Laguna Beach Fogey said...

Thank you, War Nerd.

Peter the Shark said...

Putin is more like Mussolini and Ataturk than Hitler or Stalin.

And if white Americans opened their eyes, they'd realized there's more to learn from him and agree with him than with the hostile elites that run the US and EU.


No, Putin is more like Saddam Hussein or Bashar Al-Assad - a fairly incompetent, incredibly corrupt dictator more interested in personal gain for himself and his cronies than rebuilding his country. If paleocons would open their eyes they would realize that Putin is no friend to ethnic Russians, so it's hard to see how he's good for white Americans. Putin is a Soviet nationalist, not a Russian nationalist, and Soviet patriots have always despised "Old Russia."

5371 said...

Anonymous said...
Steve needs to stick to immigration and race. These foreign policy pieces are making him look an authoritarian stooge.

2/12/14, 9:06 PM

I would suggest Steve Sailer carefully collect all such expressions of sympathetic concern, then double down on whatever it is they don't like.

Anonymous said...

"He is a senior statesman at the school of law and diplomacy".

And the old joke was that irony died the day that Kissinger won the Nobel prize.

Simon in London said...

By world standards I think the Georgian army fought moderately effectively. A lot of militaries would have collapsed immediately the Russians started pouring through the tunnel. The Georgians are possibly the least martial of the Caucasian tribes (certainly less than the Ossetians!), but that still leaves them as better fighters than most peoples on the planet.
It was still insane for them to attack Russia, and insane for the US to support them, even airlifting Georgia's best forces back from Iraq in an effort to prevent the Georgian defeat. Georgia is a lot weaker than Egypt, and Russia is a lot stronger than Israel.

Simon in London said...

anon:
"If we applied the logic of the Russophiles to Ukraine the EU and USA are are perfectly right to arm and assist and if necessary enter western Ukriane to "protect" it."

The Ukraine should really be partitioned, with the Uniate-Catholic west joining or affiliating with the EU-empire, and the Orthodox & Russian east going back to Russia. There doesn't seem to be much demand for this in Ukraine, though, but that may change.

Hunsdon said...

Peter the Shark said: No, Putin is more like Saddam Hussein or Bashar Al-Assad . . . .

Hunsdon said: Damn, Saddam Hussein is looking better and better in retrospect. Wonder if they have any of those "Miss me yet?" billboards up in Baghdad.

Anonymous said...

"If paleocons would open their eyes they would realize that Putin is no friend to ethnic Russians, so it's hard to see how he's good for white Americans."

The fact that the neocons hate Putin so much is proof enough that he IS a friend to ethnic Russians, white Americans and all other whites. I've seen other proofs too, but if I didn't, the hatred by the neocons and the liberals (almost the same thing) would have been enough.

DJF said...

Actually the South Ossetia and Abkhazian borders are internationally recognized since Georgia recognized them when they agreed to a cease fire and the EU, Russia and UN got involved in that agreement. They don’t have formal agreement but they are recognized.

The reason why there was a agreement is that the Ossetians and the Abkhazians won the previous war when Georgia tried a “Georgia for the Georgians policy“ to ethnically cleanse the area

The reason why Russia gives Russian passports to South Ossettians and Abkhazians is because as the recognized successor to the Soviet Union it is required to issue passports to anyone from the old Soviet Union who can‘t get a recognized passport from any of the other former members of the Soviet Union..

The reason why Abkhazia joined the war was because they had a mutual defense treaty with South Ossettians.

The reason why Russia entered Georgia was to

1. Drive Georgian forces out of artillery range of South Ossettia,

2. Collect all the abandoned Georgian weapons.(Something the US did not do when it invaded Iraq and paid dearly for that mistake)

3. Round up South Ossettian and Abkhazia forces which had entered Georgia so that the fighting would stop. That is what peacekeepers do, separate the fighters.

Anonymous said...

>Ossetians and Georgians are two different ethnicities.
So is chicanos and gringos. You must be supporting Aztlan secessionism.

Anonymous said...

Under putin, wahhabism is growing among Russia's enormous once-secular moslem minority. He's allowing more and more central Asian moslems to immigrate to Russia. As Steve wrote about after the Boston bombings, he's allowed the kadyrov mafia to extend its influence far past chechnya. But hey, he expertly trolls obama, so let's slobber on his knob.

Mr. Anon said...

"Anonymous said...

Steve needs to stick to immigration and race. These foreign policy pieces are making him look an authoritarian stooge."

Yeah, we need to just leave foreign policy to the experts - the State Department, CFR, AEI, Brookings, Weekly Standard, etc. - people who don't just look like authoritarian stooges, but who actually ARE authoritarian stooges.

NOTA said...

Personally, I don't give a flying fuck who rules in Ossetia, so long as the US isn't involved in a war to determine the answer. Our dicking around in that region during the Bush administration was just another one of the many obvious signs that the administration was run by a bunch of damned fools.

Anonymous said...

"The Georgians are possibly the least martial of the Caucasian tribes (certainly less than the Ossetians!)"

This is correct. Georgians are lowlanders by Caucasus standards. They have a very old literate culture, a native intelligentsia (to which Saakashvili belongs, but Stalin didn't) and some remains of a native aristocracy. The smaller peoples from higher up in the mountains like the Chechens, Avars, Lezgins, Ossetians, etc. are more war-like and less cultured than the Georgians. The Armenians also have an old literate culture, but they're not really a Caucasus people.

Even if Georgians were as war-like as Chechens, they would not have been able to turn back a column of Russian tanks, however. Caucasus natives are too fractious, distrustful and extended family-oriented to be able to form effective armies. Their strength is in guerilla warfare. Effective armies usually consist of nuclear family-oriented people who are able to trust and work together with strangers.

"He's allowing more and more central Asian moslems to immigrate to Russia."

Central Asian immigration to Russia started under the neocon-supported, oligarch-run Yeltsin regime. Neocon stooges inside Russia (democracy supporters to you?) describe Putin as an oppressor of these new minorities in oppositional media. Nice try, though. Hypocrisy award of the week.

Anonymous said...

"Central Asian immigration to Russia started under the neocon-supported, oligarch-run Yeltsin regime. Neocon stooges inside Russia (democracy supporters to you?) describe Putin as an oppressor of these new minorities in oppositional media. Nice try, though. Hypocrisy award of the week."

Putin has had 13 years to change it. Dude leveled Grozny, so I don't think he cares too much about what western 'human rights' groups think of him. Neocon stooges might describe him as an oppressor of these new minorities, but they don't know what they're talking about. Ordinary ethnic Russians are angry about the violence and cultural damage being done by these immigrants and are very vocal and loud about it. Putin chooses to do nothing because either he does not care at all about all the things paleocons lionize him for, or because he thinks they can constitute a power base for him, as Steve speculates:

http://isteve.blogspot.com/2013/05/through-looking-glass-chechen-ruled.html

(Oh, and central Asian immigration to the heart of Russia didn't begin under Yeltsin and the neocons. It was a fact of life under the Soviet Union to see Uzbeks, Kazakhs, and Chechens in Moscow. Ruslan Khasbulatov, the leader of the nationalist 1993 coup against Yeltsin, was a 1944 Chechen deportee.)

Anonymous said...

http://www.themoscowtimes.com/news/article/top-officials-reject-idea-of-visa-regime-for-ex-soviet-countries/488393.html

"As for a visa regime, which is discussed so often now, I believe this approach is not promising," Romodanovsky said, Interfax reported. "The consequences of [tightly controlled] borders for foreign policy and the economy are even impossible to imagine."


I think he plagiarized McCain there.

Anonymous said...

"Oh, and central Asian immigration to the heart of Russia didn't begin under Yeltsin and the neocons. It was a fact of life under the Soviet Union to see Uzbeks, Kazakhs, and Chechens in Moscow."

This is misleading. I'm a third-generation Moscovite, grew up in the late Soviet period. Without looking anything up I'd say that at that time between 90% and 95% of the city's population (of 8 million; Heinlein was so wrong on this) consisted of Russians + Ukrainians + Belorussians. Small towns and villages in the historical core of Russia appeared to be more than 99% Russian.

It's true that people at the top of their professions from all over the Soviet Union were drawn to Moscow, but the city was huge and this elite was small, mostly concentrated in The Center (i.e. downtown). And of course a large chunk of this elite was Russian too.

Massive non-Russian presence in Moscow is a legacy of the 1990s. There were about a thousand kids in my school, which was situated on the outskirts of the city. How many of them were Central Asian or from the Caucasus? I remember three.

CK said...

It would be so exceptional if we could have someone in power somewhere who was more like William H. Harrison or Warren G. Harding or Calvin Coolidge than like Lincoln or Hitler or Mussolini or Ataturk or Stalin or Pol or Mao.
Pres. Putin strikes me as being a lot like himself and not too much like any predecessor. A male, happily and apparently unapologetically male; what a strangeness --- not a confused, uncertain, trans, multiple, fetishistic, Heinz 56 varieties ( see the recent faceplant update of sexual choices ); apparently proud of his heritage Russian.

Peter the Shark said...

Small towns and villages in the historical core of Russia appeared to be more than 99% Russian.

I remember that too. Anyone who spent time in Moscow before 1989 and goes there now can see the obvious damage that has been done. Blame Yeltsin all you want for starting the trend, but it has gotten much worse under Putin. Paleocons who worship Putin are as idiotic and ignorant of the real Russia as the pro-Stalinist US leftists in the 1930s.

Anonymous said...

"I remember that too. Anyone who spent time in Moscow before 1989 and goes there now can see the obvious damage that has been done..."

Peter the Shark, I'm curious, did you grow up there or were you there as a tourist or in some other capacity?

There was a long argument here not long ago about the extent to which the USSR was drab. Would you say that Russians were dressed more stylishly or less stylishly than Americans in the 1980s? More tastefully or less tastefully?

Anonymous said...

Putins defends Christian civilization which cant be said of the elites of EUSA.

Anonymous said...

"No, Putin is more like Saddam Hussein or Bashar Al-Assad - a fairly incompetent, incredibly corrupt dictator..."

Obviously, Saddam was better for his people (Iraqi Sunnis) and for Iraq in general than the neocon-instigated US occupation. Just as obviously, Assad is better for his people (the Alawites) and for Syria in general than whatever the neocons were planning for them. Similarly, Putin, while not perfect, is better for Russia (and I'd say for the world) than the people Ms. Nuland and her clique would have preferred to occupy the Kremlin. Everything in life is relative.

jody said...

"Mikheil Saakashvili was president of Georgia from 2004 to 2013. He is now senior statesman at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy."

wow.

Anonymous said...

Jody, the new government of Georgia was expected to try him for all sorts of crimes, so he had to flee the country. His neocon patrons gave him a job in America, so that's where he went.

Mr. Anon said...

"Peter the Shark said...

Paleocons who worship Putin are as idiotic and ignorant of the real Russia as the pro-Stalinist US leftists in the 1930s."

Who says paleos do worship him.? I don't. Lots of paleos do not. I don't trust Putin, and generally I don't trust Russia. That does not mean, however, that we should make it our business to f**k around in their sphere of interest. I don't have to like the guy to recogize that the nation he governs (corruptly and rather dictatorially - as you point out) is not really my business. And the fact that our government - and by "our government" I of course mean "not our government", as it does not really represent our interests - has seemingly set itself against Putin does not mean I have to agree with them. The agenda of the US Goverment clearly has nothing to do with what is in the interests of the people of the United State.

RWF said...

"Why would anyone believe an EU report?"

In the absence of any other in depth investigation it is the most credible report on the war.

Besides which back in 2008, Germany & France had vetoed Georgia's entry into NATO and were trying to get Russia to join organisations like the WTO- so they had no incentive to paint Russia in a bad light.

Dr. Seattle said...

Someone who started a war with Russia, which he then promptly lost, does not qualify to be a janitor at Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, or any such serious institution, let alone to be a senior statesman there.

Anonymous said...

Hey, I was the leader of a former Soviet republic and all I can get is the Fletcher School, which is the Harvard's Kennedy School of Government Lite?

On the other hand, I'm the Big Man in Medford.

Hunsdon said...

Anonydroid at 9:08 PM said: But hey, he expertly trolls obama, so let's slobber on his knob.

Hunsdon said: Stay classy.

Anonymous said...

"Paleocons who worship Putin are as idiotic and ignorant of the real Russia as the pro-Stalinist US leftists in the 1930s."


Neocons are a bigger threat to me than Putin - especially neocons who are only anti-Putin because he made it harder for their cousins to loot Russia.

ATBOTL said...

"Saakashvili was a fool to rise to the bait but the notion that Russia was the victim of an unprovoked surprise attack is just not true."

Yes it is.

"Nobody had to force South Ossetians to accept Russian passports. They asked for them."

One third of all Georgian citizens have Russian passports. Russia is a much, much nicer place to live than Georgia.

Anonymous said...

http://www.thenation.com/article/178344/distorting-russia

Good piece. And hey, a Jew defending Putin. Maybe they are a people with differing interests (actual and perceived) and differing goals. Crazy.