Perspectives on Georgia.

Current Events, World Discussion, Opinions etc
18 posts Page 1 of 1
infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


No, I don't care what you 'think', so keep your opinions to yourselves.


The wide, conflicting array of beliefs on Russia's tactics

Victor Davis Hanson

is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution

Everyone is distracted by the Olympics. The squabbling here on the campaign trail consumes the media. Two presidential candidates and a lame-duck president all are weighing in on foreign policy. No wonder Vladimir Putin thought it was a good time to invade Georgia.

Apparently, the Russian prime minister knew exactly what he was doing, but assumed no one in the West did. And he was right.

Our pundits and politicians are all over the map as Putin is variously portrayed as villain, victim, patriot, tyrant - and more still.

Neoconservatives: We must make Russia pay a terrible price for subverting a democracy. Our policy of promoting liberal governments among the former Soviet republics, with integration into Europe and relations with NATO, was sound, and it cannot be allowed to be aborted by Putin.

Bottom line: Form a ring of democracies around Russia until it sees the light and likewise evolves into a constitutional state.

Paleoconservatives: Putin is only protecting his rightful national interests in his own backyard, which don't really conflict with ours. You have to admire the old brute for taking care of business. Neocons (and no doubt Israelis in the background) provoked that Georgian loudmouth dandy Mikheil Saakashvili to stick his head in a noose - so he deserved the hanging he got.

Bottom line: We should cut a deal with our natural ally Putin to keep out of each other's proper sphere of influence - and let each deal as it wishes with these miserable little third-party troublemakers.

"Realists": Don't poke sticks at the Bear. We should define what our strategic interests in the region are. Maybe we can protect Eastern Europe, the Baltic republics and Ukraine - but only if we accept that Georgia just isn't part of the equation. We need to back out of the saloon with drawn pistols, and save as much face as we can.

This is a reminder that we forgot the role of honor and fear in international relations when we encouraged weak former Soviet republics merrily to join the West and gratuitously humiliate Russia.

Bottom line: Don't get caught again issuing promises that we can't keep!

The left wing: Putin's unilateral preemption was just like our own in Iraq. His recognition of South Ossetia's independence was no different from our own in breakaway Kosovo. So America is just as bad. Russia's attack is the moral equivalent of America arbitrarily removing the tyrant Saddam. It's all about Big Oil and pipelines anyway - along with Bush, Cheney, Halliburton, et al.

Bottom line: Another long-overdue comeuppance for the American Empire.

The liberal mainstream: Both sides are at fault. We understand Georgia's plight, but also sympathize with Russia's dilemma. We should consult the United Nations, involve the European Union, and encourage European diplomacy. We can learn from the multilateral NATO teamwork in Afghanistan.

Bottom line: Make sure that international institutions don't confuse an empathetic America with cowboy George Bush.

The Europeans: Prioritize! (1) Don't jeopardize gas supplies from, and trade with, Russia; (2) Avoid any confrontation in any form; (3) Make sure that Bush does not do something stupid to draw us too far in, but at least does something to avoid leaving us too far out.

Bottom line: Luckily, Tbilisi is still a long way from Berlin and Paris!

The rest of America: Putin is acting just like Brezhnev! But they told us that he just wanted to democratize and reform Russia, integrate with NATO and the EU, and help fight radical Islam! So why did he get angry with Georgia when it just wanted to do the same things he was supposed to be doing? That backstabber wasn't honest with us!

Bottom line: Now what?

The more Russia promises to leave Georgia, the more it seems to stay put. One reason may be that Putin keeps counting on us either to be confused, contradictory or angrier at ourselves than at Russia over his latest aggression. And given our inability to speak with one voice, he seems to be absolutely right.



I lol'd, as they say around here.

 

SamuraiJack
Posts: 10043
Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2002 11:56 am


Georgia: lol. We are building a gas pipeline so we can supply western europe and Russia can get fucked.

Russia: O rly?

 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


Image

 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


"Dear friends! The textbook you are holding in your hands is dedicated to the history of our Motherland… from the end of the Great Patriotic War to our days. We will trace the journey of the Soviet Union from its greatest historical triumph to its tragic disintegration."

This greeting is addressed to hundreds of thousands of Russian schoolchildren who will in September receive a new history textbook printed by the publishing house Enlightenment and approved by the ministry of education. "The Soviet Union," the new textbook explains, "was not a democracy, but it was an example for millions of people around the world of the best and fairest society." Furthermore, over the past 70 years, the USSR, "a gigantic superpower which managed a social revolution and won the most cruel of wars," effectively put pressure on western countries to give due regard to human rights. In the early part of the 21st century, continues the textbook, the west has been hostile to Russia and pursued a policy of double standards.

Had it not been for Vladimir Putin's involvement, this book would probably have never seen the light of day. In 2007, Putin, then Russian president, gathered a group of history teachers to talk about his vision of the past. "We can't allow anyone to impose a sense of guilt on us," was his message.

The textbook covers the period 1945-2006, a suggestive choice: from Stalin's victory in the "great patriotic war" to the "triumph" of Putinism. It celebrates all contributors to Russia's greatness, and denounces those responsible for the loss of empire, regardless of their politics. The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 is seen not as a watershed from which a new history begins, but as an unfortunate and tragic diversion that has hindered Russia's progress.

The whole postwar period in Russian history is viewed through the prism of the cold war "initiated by the United States of America." The textbook does not deny Stalin's repressions; it justifies them. The concentration of power in Stalin's hands suited the country; indeed, conditions of the time "demanded" it. "The domestic politics of the Soviet Union after the war fulfilled the tasks of mobilisation which the government set. In the circumstances of the cold war… democratisation was not an option for Stalin."

But if Stalin mobilised the country and expanded the Soviet empire so that it reached parity in power-status with the US, Mikhail Gorbachev surrendered those hard-won positions. Stupidly, from the textbook's point of view, Gorbachev considered western partners to be his political allies. He gave up central and eastern Europe, which meant Russia lost its security. America and the west instigated revolutions in Ukraine and in Georgia, which turned the former Soviet territories into western military bases. These revolutions "set a task for Moscow to pursue a more ambitious foreign policy in the post-Soviet space," the textbook says.


http://www.prospect-magazine.co.uk/arti ... p?id=10356

 

tract
Posts: 3661
Joined: Sat Oct 12, 2002 6:45 pm


lol, Russia.

 

tripn
Posts: 6721
Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2002 5:28 pm


"The Soviet Union," the new textbook explains, "was not a democracy, but it was an example for millions of people around the world of the best and fairest society."


o rly?

 

fnarky
Posts: 338
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 12:20 pm


You gotta love Putin's style...

"What did you expect us to do? Should we have just wiped the bloody snot away and bowed our heads? Should we have waved our penknives in the air? Should we have used catapults against tanks?" he said. "If an aggressor comes into one's territory we would punch him in the face and one would be right to do so."

http://ap.google.com/article/ALeqM5gAa5 ... AD934JEQ00

 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


 

fnarky
Posts: 338
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 12:20 pm


Ah yes, how fortunate there was a tranquiliser gun handy at that very moment... not to mention a TV crew to catch the whole thing on camera.

 

tripn
Posts: 6721
Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2002 5:28 pm


 

fnarky
Posts: 338
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 12:20 pm


Chinese wisdom has spread north of the border.
Fresh Tiger's brains: Good for virility.

 

SamuraiJack
Posts: 10043
Joined: Thu Aug 22, 2002 11:56 am


This forum sucks.

Hard.

Seriously.

Give it up.

Screeching at a bunch of now very well and truly brain dead hippies is a complete waste of time.

Looking like a good next to crippled spastics doesn't really mean much you know.

They had their chance, they blew it.

 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


SamuraiJack wrote :
This forum sucks.

Hard.

Seriously.

Give it up.

Screeching at a bunch of now very well and truly brain dead hippies is a complete waste of time.



What screeching? All they got was a tiger with a pancake on its head.


Looking like a good next to crippled spastics doesn't really mean much you know.

They had their chance, they blew it.



Don't talk like that in front of the little freaks. They could grow up emo or 'stolen' or something.

 

simon
Posts: 2944
Joined: Fri Dec 28, 2001 8:33 pm


infinafta wrote :
Looking like a good next to crippled spastics doesn't really mean much you know.

They had their chance, they blew it.



Don't talk like that in front of the little freaks. They could grow up emo or 'stolen' or something.



Image

 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


simon wrote :
infinafta wrote :
Looking like a good next to crippled spastics doesn't really mean much you know.

They had their chance, they blew it.



Don't talk like that in front of the little freaks. They could grow up emo or 'stolen' or something.



Image




That reminds me of my favourite song. In more ways than one.

 

fnarky
Posts: 338
Joined: Tue Sep 14, 2004 12:20 pm


 

infinafta
Posts: 4100
Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2002 1:19 pm


Image


Putin given tiger cub as birthday present
http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/world/2008 ... 097125.htm


Now he can haz tiger with pancake on its head every morning Insha'Allah!
18 posts Page 1 of 1

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests