Friday, August 22, 2008

Russia still in Georgia

When I first posted about the Russian invasion of Georgia a reader left this in the comments:

What makes you think we haven't been sufficiently tough? I don't think that you have really watched Bush very closely since 2001.

Remember when Pakistan had an epiphany - the Taliban, which they founded, trained and supplied, were really not such nice people and henceforth Pakistan stands foursquare with the US? That followed a personal visit from Darth Cheney.

It is the Bush way to let the other guy save face - anyway he chooses - as long as he cooperates. When Bush said he demanded that the Russians withdraw many said that it was not sufficiently strong. Bush chooses his words very carefully. World leaders know that he is a most serious hombre. The real message, as he announced by having a very public heated but inaudible discussion with Putin at the Olympics, is that Russia really crossed the line and he was not going to put up with it.

Bush has a reputation of being an astute poker player. He is more than willing to give the other guy bragging rights. As long as he puts the chips in his own pocket.
I didn't respond at the time because I knew that the next few days would provide all the proof of whose take on the events was correct.

Well the results are in:

POTI, Georgia (AP) - Russian troops held their position in the key town of Gori and were digging in deeper in other strategic areas of Georgia on Friday, the day that Russia's president said a pullback would be complete.

In Igoeti, a major checkpoint on the road from the capital Tbilisi to Gori, Russian troops were allowing aid organizations and local traffic through on Friday.

Red Cross vehicles, mine-clearing jeeps and trucks carrying peaches were seen heading into Gori early Friday. Russian military helicopters buzzed overhead as military trucks shuttled in and out of Gori past the checkpoint, where Russian flags were flapping in the wind.

Further west, near a base at the key Black Sea port of Poti, Russian troops were seen digging large trenches near a bridge that provides the only access to the city. Five trucks, several armored personnel carriers and a helicopter were parked nearby. Another Russian position was seen in a wooded area outside the city.

It would seem that Mr. Bush needs to brush up some on his poker playing.

The Russian Empire is back. It took a brief vacation after the Tsar was overthrown and Russia was governed by an elected Duma then it came back a few months later when the communists staged a counterrevolution and sized power. The Russian Empire took another little vacation unter Yeltsin but now Putin is busy rebuilding it.

The Russian's goal is to reassert control over all the territory that was once part of the Soviet Union. Georgia is the first but it will not be the last. If the United States does not want this to happen we need to do something about it - if we have the resolution and the courage.