Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Russia stops military action

After five days of fighting. What did Russia want to achieve?:

At the start of the conflict, there were questions as to whether the Kremlin had a clear strategy.

As it went on though, it seems to have settled on two main objectives: one military, and one political.

"The logical conclusion is to destroy the military capacity of Georgia," Dmitry Peskov, spokesman for Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, said of the aims of Russia's campaign.

Now, presumably, Russia feels it has dealt a strong enough blow to the Georgian military. That objective has been achieved.

Deep mistrust

The unspoken political objective is the weakening, or perhaps removal, of Mikhail Saakashvili.

The Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, has denied that Russia had any intention to depose the Georgian president, while adding: "It would be better if he went."

Any formal negotiation is still a way off. And, given the clear level of mistrust between the Russian and Georgian governments, it is always possible that fighting may break out again.

But even before agreeing to take part in any talks, Russia has, in effect, imposed conditions: no negotiations with Mr Saakashvili, and no Georgian troops in South Ossetia.

So... what is Bush's stratergery?:
In remarks yesterday, President Bush strongly criticized Russia's actions in Georgia. Though press analyses widely suggest that the US has little leverage in the region, this morning the Russians announced a halt to the invasion, saying they had "punished" the Georgians. Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reports "criticism is mounting that the Bush administration didn't do enough to manage its strategic relationship with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili -- and keep him out of trouble." The Journal adds "many officials in the US government who have worked on the Russia relationship in recent years said...Bush lionized Mr. Saakashvili as a model for democracy in the region to a point that the Georgian leader may have held unrealistic expectations about the amount of support he might receive from the US and the West." These officials "also point to a lack of clarity governing the US-Georgia military relationship" and said Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice "seemed so preoccupied with Iraq, Iran and the Arab-Israeli conflict that she didn't have time to fashion an effective response to Russia's muscle-flexing on its borders."
After a buzz of criticism in the media and on the blogosphere -- Agence-France Presse reported that the secretary of State had been "noticeably absent on the diplomatic scene, having failed to interrupt her holidays" -- she returned yesterday to tackle the Russian attacks on Georgia.
And Cheney is again way out in rightwing field:
On Sunday, Vice President Dick Cheney said that "Russian aggression must not go unanswered, and that its continuation would have serious consequences for its relations with the United States."
So... Dick: 'Must not go unanswered'? Serious consequences?' With whose army are we going to answer Russia? Oops, sorry. You broke the military in your two self-inflicted quagmires. Are you itching to nuke just one country before you leave office? Is that it?


Distributorcap said...

1. i thought the friggin shoe queen was a russian expert

2. do you think George and Dick will upset their oil applecart..

3. george is too busy patting the asses of volleyball players, besides he knows putin's soul

ellroon said...

Strange how a lot of things happen when they go on vacation... convenient, isn't it?