Thursday, August 14, 2008

An "Aha!" on Georgia: State Department Fouled Up

We've mentioned a few times that the Georgia situation is a parallel to Kosovo, not Iraq.

RadioMouthRanting-shallow-thinking-straw-man-creating notwithstanding, the situations in Georgia and Kosovo are almost precisely the same.

Now we have the shameless pandering, both from McCain, the War Guy (and his 'intellectual' predecssors, the NeoCons), and Obama, whose 'nuance' displayed almost total ignorance.

What a country!

At any rate, the point is made again in an article in American Thinker:

South Ossetia and Abkhazia are provinces (self declared Republics) within a sovereign country, Georgia. The populations of these two entities, non ethnic Georgians and mostly ethnic-Russians, rose to obtain separation based on their own perception of cultural identity. In comparative analysis they would be the equivalent of Kosovo's ethnic-Albanians. As in other ethnic conflicts, each side claim superseding ownership; but in the eyes of modern international law that is irrelevant after hundreds of years of settlement. An initial confrontation in the early 1990s (1992-1994) between Georgia’s post Soviet Government and the separatist movements led to agreements allowing for local autonomy for these two areas and for the deployment of Russian (CIS) Peacekeepers.

For almost 16 years this status quo survived while awaiting a final resolution of the conflict. As in many spots in the Caucasus and the Balkans, borders do not always correspond with nationalities and ethnicities. The agreement between South Ossetia and Georgia, blessed by Moscow, was the guarantee of stability, until times changed.

One of the major drivers of the Ossetia situation was the blunder of the West in Kosovo (and no, it was not simply defending the Kosovars against the Serbs--which was also questionable.)

The challenge began when during winter 2008, the US and the European Union decided to unleash Kosovo's separation despite Serbia's opposition. In international jurisprudence, breaking away entities need validation by the country the partition is going to affect. In Canada for example, Quebec would always need the other provinces to agree on separation. Agreement of "both sides" is usually sought.

But in the case of Kosovo, for international political motivations, including a gesture to please the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) in the midst of a campaign to win hearts and minds, Washington and Brussels went ahead swiftly and endorsed Pristina's declaration of separation from Belgrade. The Western powers argued that going back to Serbia was out of question for the Kosovars; therefore going forward was the only option, despite Serbian claims inside the province

Well, ain't THAT ducky. The Muslims are happy!! Problem: Moscow was NOT happy.

The Russian statement was poorly covered in the international media. The release said the Russian Federation will recognize the efforts by South Ossetia and Abkhazia to secede from Georgia. It was a clear eye for an eye declaration, but it went unnoticed in the West. In an article titled "Be Wise on Kosovo," published on December 13, 2007 in the American Thinker, I warned that a chain reaction may begin elsewhere. The confrontations taking place today in the Caucasus were triggered strategically in the Balkans few months before. Russia was ignored on the shores of the Mediterranean, it responded on the shores of the Black sea. ...

So State and Brussels, in an effort to appease the Muslims, managed to slap The Bear in the chops. Not wise--on all counts.

(Note the Muslim gratitude for this. I'll wait while you write up the long list of nice things they've done lately to repay us for the favor....) Done? Good.

To the present:

From August 6 on, the Georgian offensive attempted to seize the capital of the enclave [S. Ossetia] and the Russian counter offensive pushed the Georgians out. Moscow accused Tbilisi's units of ethnic cleansing and Georgia's leaders counter-accused the Russians of invading all of their country.

In other words, the usual propaganda, from both sides.

Here's a case where the US just plain fouled it up, beginning with Clinton and continuing through the increasingly-incompetent tenure of Condi Rice.

Don't let the RadioMouths fool you.

HT: McIlheran


Anonymous said...

The greater power overrules sovereignty. This ancient precedent is once again established as the Europeans, with American blessing and help, allow the lands of Kosovo to escape the sovereignty of Serbia. This is followed by American and others enforcing the United Nations restrictions on the cruel and despotic sovereignty of Iraq. The Russians have observed and understand the working rules of the “International Game”, deciding to apply them to an area of land in the sovereign nation state of Georgia. Putin has deftly played this “in your face” move and it will stand. The world is ruled by the aggressive use of force and the Russians appear to have our precedents on their side. Indefensible sovereignty is as ephemeral as always. R10

Anonymous said...

The nuances are in the multitudes.

The reality continues to be an old Russia fillings its old shoes as the Soviet.

The Soviet has begun to threaten the Ukraine and they are indicating they are ready to rumble.

We must stand up against it. Forget the nuances.

The Russians are not our friends and they must be put back in their hole.

Anonymous said...

So in Russia's view the issues of Kosovo, S Ossetia and Abkhazia's independence are inter-related. Then how come that while Russia demands the independence of S Ossetia and Abkhazia, it is denying the independence of Kosovo?

Dad29 said...

If you read the linked article, you'd find out why.

Serbia did NOT consent to the "declaration of independence" of Kosovo. Russia is more-or-less a Serbian ally.

Under standard protocol, Serbia was supposed to consent to Kosovar independence--but State and Brussels ignored standard protocol to make the Muslims happy, and Serbia never consented.

So Russia views the breakaway as illicit.