on the silk road

Georgia says “very close” to war with Russia
May 7, 2008, 7:46 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

By Mark John

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Russia’s deployment of extra troops in the breakaway Georgian region of Abkhazia has brought the prospect of war “very close”, a minister of ex-Soviet Georgia said on Tuesday.

Separately, in comments certain to fan rising tension between Moscow and Tbilisi, the “foreign minister” of the breakaway Black Sea region was quoted as saying it was ready to hand over military control to Russia.

“We literally have to avert war,” Temur Iakobashvili, a Georgian State Minister, told reporters in Brussels.

Asked how close to such a war the situation was, he replied: “Very close, because we know Russians very well.”

“We know what the signals are when you see propaganda waged against Georgia. We see Russian troops entering our territories on the basis of false information,” he said.

At a banking event in Madrid, Vice Finance Minister Dimitri Gvindadze said the Georgian economy was holding up despite the tensions. However ratings agency Fitch said a conflict would likely hit Georgia’s ratings but not immediately Russia’s.

“Obviously if we have an unfreezing of the conflict that will be extremely negative for the country (Georgia) and would lead to negative ratings action,” Fitch’s Edward Parker told Reuters in London.

Georgia, a vital energy transit route in the Caucasus region, has angered Russia, its former Soviet master with which it shares a land border, by seeking NATO membership.

Russia has said its troop build-up is needed to counter what it says are Georgian plans to attack Abkhazia, a sliver of land by the Black Sea, and has accused Tbilisi of trying to suck the West into a war — allegations Georgia rejects.

Tensions have been steadily mounting and escalated after Georgia accused Russia of shooting down one of its drones over Abkhazia in April, a claim Russia denied.

An extra Russian contingent began arriving in Abkhazia last week. Moscow has not said how many troops would be added but said the total would remain within the 3,000 limit allowed under a United Nations-brokered ceasefire agreement signed in 1994. Diplomats expect the reinforcement to be of the order of 1,200.


Russian soldiers acting as peacekeepers patrol areas between Georgian and Abkhazian forces but handing full military control of the breakaway province to the Kremlin would alarm both the Georgian government and its allies in the West.

“Those 200 km (120 miles), the distance between the Psou and the Inguri rivers, are all Abkhazia. We agree to Russia taking this territory under its military control,” Sergei Shamba, “foreign minister” of Abkhazia, told Russian newspaper Izvestia.

“In exchange, we will demand guarantees of our security.”

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Moscow had not received an official request from Abkhazia for its military to take control of the region.

Iakobashvili urged EU states to take a more active role in the region, with options including the deployment of border monitors or a police mission.

Diplomats said EU President Slovenia was studying sending a delegation at the level of state secretaries to Georgia as a gesture of solidarity, but a number of ex-communist EU states were insisting it should be a full-fledged ministerial visit.

Could it Spark a Larger War?

From “The Week Daily”

“It’s tough to pay attention to wars that haven’t yet broken out in places we can’t even spell,” said the Los Angeles Times in an editorial (free registration), but we should care that Abkhazia is “perilously close” to open warfare. Russia is trying to keep Georgia out of NATO, and its attempts to provoke Georgia into a NATO-ending invasion “have been nothing short of outrageous.” But Georgia “is fighting dirty as well,” putting a hold on Russia’s entry into the World Trade Organization. The U.S. wants Georgia in NATO and Russia in the WTO, but it only has sway over Georgia.

This might be a good time to rethink our support of Georgia’s NATO bid, said Matthew Yglesias in The Altantic, at least until it comes to “some kind of stable resolution” of its problems in Abkhazia and fellow breakaway region South Ossetia. It isn’t wise to extend NATO’s “absolute security guarantees to a country in Georgia’s position unless there’s some overwhelming strategic rationale for doing so,” and “just to be nice” doesn’t cut it.

With or without formal NATO membership, said Anne Applebaum in Slate, “the West will have to come up with a major response” if Russia invades Georgia. Georgia is “an emerging democracy” with troops in Iraq, and it has “many implicit assurances of security” from the U.S. and NATO. This is worrisome. World War I had a similarly obscure start, and trouble in Abkhazia could “become the starting point of a larger war.”

It certainly could, said Alexander Golts in The Moscow Times, but not because Russia or Georgia actually wants “this conflict to escalate toward a military conflict.” Both sides have political and strategic reasons to provoke the other, but they are playing a dangerous game of brinksmanship. The two sides’ “aggressive” posturing could sharply escalate out of control, like at the start of World War I, and that could have “tragic consequences for the entire world.”


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Truth about war in Ossetia that is overlooked by BBC and CNN

At 7 p.m. on August 8, the day when Olympics started, worldwide community heard from CNN and BBC news that Russian tanks invaded Georgia and that Russia started war with Georgia.

That the war had begun 16 hours earlier by Georgian president Sukashvili’s order these media preferred to pass over in silence.

But you have the right to know truth. That’s how this really happened:

According to old tradition of Olympic Games’ eve everyone was looking for peace and quiet. On August 7, Georgian and South Ossetian officials agreed to observe a ceasefire and hold debates in attempt to solve their long-term conflict peacefully.

August 8, 00:06
Just hours later, six minutes past midnight on August 8, inhabitants of Ossetian capital Tskhinvali, peacefully sleeping in their beds, heard dreadful whizz of incoming rockets. The hell followed soon… Without any declaration Georgian forces launched massive shelling of Tskhinvali with all available means, including heavy artillery and multiple-launch rocket systems GRAD. In this massacre, in just several hours, the whole city was ruined: 2,000 human lives wasted and 85% of all buildings demolished. Georgian military expedition, called “Clean field”, yielded its first fruits…

August 8, 03:00
Georgian army occupied five Ossetian villages, burning them to ashes.

August 8, 03:30
Georgian tanks started attack on Tskhinvali. Ossetian militia stood up to the enemy but could not keep back 30-times outnumbering Georgian forces. Many basements where Ossetins tried to escape shelling were showered with grenades. At the very same time, Georgian “peacekeepers”, serving in South Ossetia, launched unexampled attack on their yesterday’s colleagues, Russian peacekeepers, managing to kill at least 10 of them.

August 8, 04:33
Russia called for UN Security Council meeting to put a stop to Georgian military aggression and seize fire. No decision was delivered at neither this nor several following meetings.

August 8, 09:00
Russian Prime Minister Putin informed President Bush that Georgia launched war against Ossetia. Mr. Bush answered that “nobody wanted this war”.

Ossetia was praying for help. It was already obvious that “clean field” meant nothing else but ethnical cleansing. In these circumstances, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced that Russia would defend Russian citizens who constitute 90% of South Ossetia population.

August 8, 16:00
Russian forces overstepped mountain pass and made their way toward perishing Ossetins. That was exactly the moment when CNN and BBC finally “noticed” the war and broadcasted their «Russians invaded Georgia» scenes. Sukashvili announced that Russia invaded Georgia and held back that he started this horrible bloodshed himself.

Before midnight, Russian and Ossetian forces kicked aggressors out of Ossetian capital. Survived citizens started to leave basements to escape the city. In the next couple days around 30,000 refugees fled to Russia.

Failed Georgian assault turned to informational blackout and devilish propaganda. It’s time when so much depends on your personal position! We believe that there will be journalists who can give objective picture of these events. We believe in people of peace who will regard an attempt of massive extermination of small nation as genocide (3% of South Ossetins and 0.3% of all Ossetins worldwide were killed in just one night on August 8; fascists have never achieved that efficiency in exterminating Jewish people even when Auschwitz and Treblinka were working at full capacity). We believe in a world community that will view Sukashvili’s inhuman orders as war crime and an outrage on humanity. We believe in you, thinking person, able to confront with facts, person who will not follow barefaced propaganda of politicized and deeply corrupt media, person able to recognize truth!

Please, help to spread words of truth and stop murderers!

Comment by Andrey

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