Georgia on My Mind
What are Putin's ambitions in Georgia? Putin has stated his dismay at the disintegration of the old Soviet Union, and may have dreams of rebuilding the old Russian empire. If so, what can the US do about it?
It's not clear that we can do much. Even if the US military were not already tied down in Iraq, Georgia would seem to be beyond our reach. So what led Georgia to bait the bear? Perhaps they thought they had friends in high places.
Georgia's independence hangs by a thread, but the fact that Georgia was foolish enough to make the first move (by invading its breakaway province of South Ossetia), can be seen as yet another consequence of the drugstore cowboy presidency of George Bush. Bush looked into Putin's eyes and saw a "good soul." Putin looked Bush's eyes and saw a weakling and a fool.
If Putin has decided on conquest, then the Cold War is on again, and on again in a moment of maximum weakness for the West. The paranoid in me, thinking of the McCain - Georgia connection linked above, wonders if the original Georgian provocation isn't another attempt to promote his candidacy. McCain never saw a war he didn't like, and the Republican party has already proven that it is willing to start a war to gain a presidency.
The little countries on Russia's borders should tremble, and the US should ask itself if it can afford another fool like Bush.