Monday, August 11, 2008
The evidence is growing that the Russian's are trying to conquer Georgia and oust its government:
In a heated exchange with his Russian counterpart at the United Nations, Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad of the United States accused the Kremlin of seeking to oust Mr. Saakashvili.
He charged that Russia's foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, had said as much Sunday morning in a telephone conversation with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, telling her "that the democratically elected president of Georgia 'must go,' " Mr. Khalilzad said. Mr. Khalilzad said the comment was "completely unacceptable."
In Washington, American officials said that Georgian troops had tried to disengage but that the Russians had not allowed them to.
"The Georgians told them, 'We're done. Let us withdraw,' " one American military official said. "But the Russians are not letting them withdraw. They are pursuing them, and people are seeing this."
Of course, the Russians have no meaningful justification under international law, far less than the imperfect case the United States and its coalition built to justify regime change in Iraq.
That caused me to wonder, where are the anti-war groups?
Well, as of this morning, you can find no mention of the war on A.N.S.W.E.R.'s home page. The group is addressing many other pressing matters, but apparently not the unremitting attack on Georgia. Code Pink? Nyet. Democracy Now!, which is a left-wing media group, has lots of news about American wars on its web page but nothing about Russia or Georgia. Nothing from the comrades at Peace Action. Stop the War Coalition? What war? You can search the home pages of left-wing groups until the cows come home and not find anything on the Russo-Georgia war.
C'mon guys, Human Rights Watch -- to its credit -- was all over this on Saturday with a boilerplate press release (although you would not know it from the scant press coverage it received, neither Israel nor the United States being involved). The least you can do is copy that one.
So far, at least, it is safe to conclude that these organizations are not so much anti-war as they are anti-American and anti-Israeli. It is useful to clear that up. And, by the way, if they decide to organize massive anti-war rallies against Russia and belatedly reveal themselves as intellectually honest, I will be the first to say so.
DOH!: Post title fixed! Thanks.
MORE (Monday, 6:30 pm): A couple of commenters have posted links to protests in front of Russian embassies. That is all good, and we need more of it. However, as nearly as I can tell these protests were essentially Georgian nationalist, rather than at the behest of the transnational leftist anti-war groups.
strikes me that the institutional anti war types and the media anti war brigades will work hard to minimize the Russo Georgian conflict because the louder that war, the more a McCain victory becomes probable.
Imperfect case against Iraq?
You mean, in hindsight?
No one seriously contends that Saddam complied with the unconditional terms of the cease fire at the end of the Gulf War.
How does it weaken the case to contend he had programs, not stockpiles -- still unproven, given that biostocks could conceivably fit on a post-it note.
Yes, when the U.S. or Israel are in a war, the "pacifists" come out in force, arguing that war is brutal, war involves killing innocent people, violence never solves anything, etc. Once it's other parties involved, they are silent.
I always knew they were hypocrites.
It's not just the commie groups like ANSWER and UFPJ who have gone to ground when the Russians start blasting away at their neighbors. Don't forget all the weaselly little church "pacifist" groups who flesh out those demonstrations and who demonstrate weekly at the Pentagon. They traitors, too.
Somewhat off topic, but every time I read about a prominent US official with a name like Zalmay Khalilzad it reminds me how blessed our nation really is.
I don't know where Ambassador Khalizad's family originated, but I'm pretty sure that is not an English or even European name. The fact that he is representing the United States in our efforts to oppose tyranny speaks volumes about the principles our nation is founded on, and the realization of many of those ideals.
* Up to 2,000 Killed as Russia-Georgia Fighting Enters Fourth Day *
After four days of heavy fighting, Russian tanks are now approaching central
Georgian cities away from the separatist regions of South Ossetia and
Abkhazia. Russian officials say Georgia provoked the assault by attacking
South Ossetia late last week, causing heavy civilian casualties. NATO's
Secretary General and President Bush have both condemned Russia's
"disproportionate" use of force in Georgia.
Re Khalilzad, he's from Afghanistan and FWIW is Sunni Muslim. Impressive resume and served previously as U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan (makes perfect sense) and to Iraq (ok I suppose). I take issue, however, with appointing him as U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. No disrespect to him personally or his accomplishments, but while I'm sure the intent was as Anonymous describes (Is this a great country or what?) I think it sends the wrong message. When you're at war with Islamofascists (not Muslims generally), you want a Johm Bolton unapolgetically representing the U.S. Appointing a Khalilzad scores you no points with those we are at war with and is, rather, seen by them as a sign of weakness. Nor will it earn you much more respect from Euro-capitulators and the rest of the blame-the-U.S.-and-Israel U.N. crowd.
Back to TigerHawk's original point, spot on. We now return you to our regular programming.
WHAT DO WE KNOW ABOUT GEORGIA-RUSSIA CONFLICT? http://www.opednews.com/articles/WHAT-DO-WE-KNOW-ABOUT-GEOR-by-Bruce-K-Gagnon-080811-400.html
PRAVDA: War between Russia and Georgia orchestrated from USA Russian officials believe that it was the USA that orchestrated the current conflict. (10 comments)
My Own Possibly Paranoid Theory On What Is Happening in Georgia
Diary Entry by Mystic Wizard
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is that even the Bush/Cheney black ops units decided that there is too much attention on Iran, so they concocted this Georgia/Russia scenario designed to drag the USA in, and provide some "credence" to a domestic terror incident (blaming Russia instead of Iran) occurring here, before Inauguration Day, Jan. 19 2009, so they can declare martial law.
It makes no sense whatsoever for a country of 8 million to declare war on Russia. Especially since, (according to Wikipedia) "On July 13, 2007, Georgia set up a state commission, chaired by the Prime Minister Zurab Noghaideli, to develop South Ossetia's autonomous status within the Georgian state."
So why invade?
My ex-wife is Georgian and is, in fact, visiting her family in Tblisi at this moment. So, it does weigh heavily on my mind....
I am over-50, live in the NYC metropolitan area and would describe myself as politically and spiritually preoccupied.
I believe we (the human race) have arrived at a pivotal point in world history.
I believe while good and evil must always exist side-by-side, there are currently divine forces afoot which will dramatically change the current configuration.
I believe each of us are obliged to do our share in making this come about.
No matter what they say, Noam Chomsky is the current authority on secular matters, and should be read by every individual who believes that political reality is too complex/subtle to understand..
I belive the secret of life is human action borne of conscience and meditation. Practicing Ramana Maharshi's "Who Am I?" Self-Inquiry is the quickest way to salvation.
I'll add stuff if it occurs to me to do so...
The Left has been waging war on America for decades. The majority of citizens think it's too awful to think 1/3 - 1/2 of the country is trying to tear down the country quite deliberately, so they assume The Left is just trying to improve America in an unusual way. The unions would throw workers under the bus, the ACLU would support oppression, the environmentalists would support burning the country to the ground. It's no longer a responsible position to assume The Left is a loyal opposition. Ignoring them is like ignoring some kook on your airliner ranting and trying to open the emergency exit. They want us dead or subjugated. They don't accidentally support every measure to weaken the country every time they can do so.
Stop the War Coalition's denouncement is here. And here's Amnesty International's response. Peace Action wrote "Russia & Georgia At Dangerous Odds" and posted news clippings and YouTubes on Friday.
As to the larger point, I don't know that the conclusion makes a lot of logical sense. There's nothing on the Gathering of Eagles website, either. Using your logic, are we to assume some sort of lack of support for Georgia against the Russians? Or could it be that, like ANSWER and Code Pink, Gathering of Eagles's mission as an organization is to concentrate on US involvement in the War on Terror?
Assuming anti-American bias is a pretty bad faith argument here. I protested the war in Iraq, but I'm not taking to the streets over Russia/Georgia/South Ossetia for a few pretty simple reasons. The biggest being that, before Friday, I'd never heard of South Ossetia, and most of you hadn't either. And, unlike a lot of bloggers out there, I'm not gonna shoot my mouth off and pretend to be some sort of policy expert just because I read a few articles and a wikipedia entry.
The UK paper Telegraph has an image gallery of protests around the world, mainly of a pro-Georgia variety with protesters at Russian embassies. Cities involved include Brussels, Beijing, Rome, London, Strasbourg.
Warsaw protest here:
Anonymous @ 3:05 - You all the 'Stop the war coalitions' press release a denouncement of the Russian attack? You're an idiot. It pretty much says that it's the US's fault and the Russians were forced into it. Did you even read it?
From the press release:
The oubreak of war in Georgia is already a disaster for the people of the region. It risks being turned into a still broader problem by Dick Cheney's threats.
The conflict is in large measure the product of George Bush's policy of US global hegemony, in the Caucauses as in the Middle East. Attempts to extend NATO eastwards, specifically incorporating Georgia, directly challenge Russian interests.
Anti war protesters are outside the UN in New York, and outside the Russian embassy in London:
To anonymous at 3:05. You said, "I protested the war in Iraq, but I'm not taking to the streets over Russia/Georgia/South Ossetia for a few pretty simple reasons. The biggest being that, before Friday, I'd never heard of South Ossetia, and most of you hadn't either. And, unlike a lot of bloggers out there, I'm not gonna shoot my mouth off and pretend to be some sort of policy expert just because I read a few articles and a wikipedia entry."
You don't have to be a policy expert. All you have to do is to demand that both sides cease fighting and sit down at a negotiating table. What's so hard about that?
And by the way, what did you do when Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait?
The Holbrook/Asmus article sums up the anti-war position regarding georgia (and all other conflicts). They say a) it wouldn't have happened if we'd done diplomacy better and b) how could the russians violate the ancient tradition of no wars during the olympics - and within 25 miles of where they will hold the olympics themselves?! In other words: "if only they could all be clever, honorable, and reasonable like me..."
It is a fantasy that is blind to history. They want to tell themselves "But we've learned. We're smarter now. It will never happen again."
Dumb shits! It will happen again and again forever. As soon as you stop guarding the gate with a big stick - your neighbor will encroach.
An earlier poster said:
"As to the larger point, I don't know that the conclusion makes a lot of logical sense. There's nothing on the Gathering of Eagles website, either."
That is not quite true. I have had a posting up at the New York Gathering of Eagles website since early Sunday morning:
It is a major concern to the GOE when our allies who have fought side by side with our troops are attacked. Whether those allies are British, Polish, Canadian or Georgian makes no difference.
NY State Coordinator
Gathering of Eagles
Yes the anti-war groups are hypocrites; more communist than democratic by nature in my opinion. But they also know the reality of the world politics; Russia would ignore their protests and in some cases extract retribution. The Western government’s actions could be impacted by their public pressure. I still despise them. What is interesting is that they haven’t learned anything from the formation of the USSR or more recently the events in Iran. The Leftists supported the 1979 revolution in Iran and by the late 1980 were either killed, exiled, forced underground or in prison. The fools here and in Europe are setting up their own deaths if with their help it causes Western society to collapse.
I don't think they're rooting for Russia. If this whole issue just disappeared tomorrow, they'd just forget about it. They wouldn't sit around brooding about Russia's failure to crush Georgia.
But insofar as the issue refuses to disappear, it can't be conceived of in any way that doesn't hold the United States as the sole cause of hostilities. But it's doubtful there's any pro-Russian (or anti-Georgian) bias involved.
I'd venture a guess that for a lot of commentators, Ossetia, Georgia, and even Russia herself, don't even really exist except as they can be fit into some narrative involving the US.
"The Leftists supported the 1979 revolution in Iran and by the late 1980 were either killed, exiled, forced underground or in prison. The fools here and in Europe are setting up their own deaths if with their help it causes Western society to collapse."
I've pointed that out many times in various discussions on the Internet, and it makes absolutely no impression on the average leftist whatsoever. They have a death wish, I guess.
Democracy now only recently noticed the Russo Georgian war and they already are putting their own spin to it...
No surprise blame the U.S. for a change.
Fright wing Retardicans, what a bunch of nonsense. You forgot to moan "where are the feminists", since obviously women and children are being killed too.
Your passive aggressive crap will soon be swept from power by the reasonable people.
Unless of course George nukes everybody.
Spot on, Tigerhawk.
And not only are the "Peace" Creeps AWOL on this war, Putin and Russia are guilty of all the charges they normally hurl at Bush and America, i.e.; "criminal war", "All about the Oil!!!!", "War for Empire!", "Putin Knew!", etc.
There were demonstrations in Europe, but the leftists and "peace activists" who *never* fail to show up to protest Israel and America were not there.
In Helsinki there was a demonstration organized by a Finnish-Georgian friendship society and the main *conservative* party. The "peace activist" crowd is completely silent. I've heard a few people proclaim that it's all an American provocation engineered by George Bush and that's about it.
And for the record, I was much more outraged by the war on Iraq but I couldn't stomach really joining the "peace movement" then because it was full of hateful leftists (that is, people who thought 9/11 was just great and so on).