The Russian Georgian Conflict

Russia forces on edge of South Ossetia capital: website | International | Reuters

So in essence we have a war now. Wonderful. /sarcasm

Why is that so many wars and conflicts seem to be heralded by the of the Olympic games? It just seems a bit ironic, and the timing of this conflict suspicious.

Hopefully the dimwits involved will realize the uselessness of the conflict and end it quickly with Russia withdrawing back to its borders, Georgia’s recognized territorial boundaries restored, and peace, however uneasy or fractious, is restored before too many lives are lost too late. Perhaps even talks with the Ossetians to see what they really want, not what their Russian or Georgian backed proxies want.

It really does surprise me that the Russians have at this time apparently forgotten the old proverb: Худо́й мир лу́чше до́брой ссоры. (Trans. A bad peace is better than a good quarrel.) Especially considering the situation over the past decade or so in the Ossetia region of Georgia has been relatively calm and peaceful when compared to other regions like Chechnya. But then as another saying goes: Кому́ война́, а кому́ мать родна́. That’s pretty much true in all wars and conflicts and if those in power make a profit on such conflict they have no impetus to end that conflict.

Unfortunately this conflict has been building for years between Georgia, a former Soviet state determined to keep it’s nation free of perceived Russian interference and domination and Russia, using less that clear reasoning on the invasion/support of Ossetia aside from perhaps some notion that Ossetian area is Russian and has been granting Russian citizenship to Ossetians.

U.S. political leaders reaction:

McCain calls on Russia to withdraw from Georgia | Politics | Reuters

Bush and Putin discuss Georgia fighting | Politics | Reuters
US calls for cease-fire in Georgia | The Sun |News

Obama apparently supported the administration position but I have yet to find a separate article clearly stating as much at this time.

The Russian view point:

(Opinion) The two-faced, underhanded foreign policy of Georgia – Pravda.Ru

Biased much? But then it is an op-ed piece. The title alone is a clear indicator.

Russian tanks enter South Ossetia to oust Georgian troops – Pravda.Ru

Pro-Russian obviously, but less vitriolic the the previous piece.

South Ossetia Conflict Escalates – The Moscow Times

About as neutral as it gets in Russia these days. Still pro-Russian, but not enthusiastically so.

Interesting side effect:

Bloomberg.com: Worldwide- Ruble, Russian Stocks Fall as Putin Says Georgia ‘War” Started

Saakashvili First on Bloomberg TV: ‘Full Scale Russian Invasion’: Financial News – Yahoo! Finance

What makes me fear this is simply a Russian invasion of Georgia proper is the many reports noting attacks on Georgia proper, including non-military targets near the Georgian capitol of Tbilisi. I doubt most of the world remembers the riots in Tbilisi in 1989 when the Soviets sent tanks in to break up a peaceful pro-democracy rally but I do. I wasn’t in Tbilisi for the unwarranted crackdown but I remember well the stories of the other students who were there and the exchange directors informing us we could possibly be evacuated from the USSR. Hopefully the Russian invasion of Georgia isn’t turned into some sort of occupation (ala Chechnya) but recent Russian government leadership hasn’t shown much reason or restraint when it comes the that region.

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