Wednesday, August 20, 2008 at 1:12 AM

Georgia: The Russians are coming, the Russians are coming…?

Posted by Anthony L. Hall

Nothing troubles my conscience and geopolitical consciousness more … than the prevailing ignorance I find amongst so many American colleagues and friends about the origins and implications of this conflict [in Georgia].

Of course, this is hardly the forum for such rudimentary political education – although nothing demonstrates the need quite like the American who wondered why her family in Atlanta had no idea that Georgia was under attack.

[The iPINIONS Journal, August 14, 2008]

Meanwhile, you’ve probably heard the US and NATO talking tough about helping Georgia reclaim its sovereign integrity.  Yet it is abundantly clear that, despite Russia’s promise to withdraw its troops from the disputed provinces, the Georgians are no more likely to reclaim control over Abkhazia and South Ossetia than the Serbians are to reclaim control over Kosovo.

It is not surprising therefore that, instead of relying on hollow words to deter Russian aggression, Polish leaders hastened today to sign an agreement with the US to base ballistic missiles on their soil. 

Moreover, perhaps to reinforce the point that Poland (a member of the NATO alliance) is no Georgia (which is not), US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice declared that this missile deployment will “help the alliance … respond to the coming threats.” 

For its part, Russia responded by warning that this deployment “has opened Poland up to a [nuclear] attack.”  But nobody believes that Russia would dare to trigger NATO’s governing principle which provides that:

…an attack against one NATO country shall be considered an armed attack against them all.

Game over!

UPDATE (8:00 pm GMT) 

Game over!?  Well, evidently not: because the London Times is reporting that Russia moved today to base “defensive” missiles in Syria to counter the US’s move in Poland.  Moreover, Russia seems to have found in Syrian President Bashar al-Assad an even more willing pawn than the US has in Polish President Lech Kaczynski.

In fact, here’s how Assad framed his new Cold-War alliance with Russia:

Our position is that we are ready to co-operate with Russia in any project that can strengthen its security. I think Russia really has to think of the response it will make when it finds itself closed in a circle.

Except that, given the way Israel dealt with Syria’s military alliance with North Korea earlier this year, it seems Assad is just begging for another preemptive strike from his Jewish minders….

So, play on boys….

Related Articles:
Russia consolidates control over Georgian territories
Recognizing (or lamenting) Kosovo independence
Israel prepares for Iran…by bombing Syria

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