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Texas Columnist: America's Wishful Thinking Leads to Further Foreign Entanglements

Rod Dreher, a Dallas Morning News editorial columnist, writes in RealClearPolitics:

"We are all Georgians now," John McCain said in response to Russia's invasion of the former Soviet republic.

We are? Spare me. You couldn't find one American in a thousand who could locate Georgia on a map, but the Republican hothead who would be president is ready to bind America's sacred honor to the place. And more than our sacred honor, our military might, too. Mr. McCain, a tempestuous Russophobe to the marrow, demanded that the U.S. accelerate efforts to bring Georgia into NATO, thus extending a trip wire for war with Russia to Moscow's southern border. Because, you know, having conquered Iraq and Afghanistan while barely breaking a sweat, we're rested and ready to let an adventurous Caucasus nation led by a nut shown on TV chewing on his cravat drag us into World War III.

He does not like Barack Obama's support for NATO membership for Georgia either and wonders whether the Democrats are "so afraid of being baited by the Republicans as cowards that they sign on to any foolish policy proposed by GOP jingoes?"

Dreher is frustrated with the lack of realism in the political debate:

Dr. Bacevich said, "What neither of these candidates will be able to, I think, accomplish is to persuade us to look ourselves in the mirror, to see the direction in which we are headed." That direction, he went on, is deeper into the hole of debt and foreign entanglements involving an overstretched U.S. military. We prefer to believe the romantic image of ourselves and our country and to deal with the world as we wish it were rather than as it is.

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Anonymous on :

"so afraid of being baited by the Republicans as cowards that they sign on to any foolish policy proposed by GOP jingoes?" Yep, this is one of America's biggest weaknesses: The "obsession" with being (or at least: appearing to be) strong. One of the main motivations for the Iraq war seems to be that after 9/11 it was seen necessary to give a strong demonstration of power in the Muslim world. The threat of WMD was just picked as a round for war for "bureaucratic reasons" as Wolfowitz admitted. And now the highly insecure superpower USA feels challenged by an assertive, but still totally backward and troubled Russia and wants to drag the Europeans into the next foreign entanglement my letting Georgia into NATO although it is not yet an established Democracy but let by some "revolutionary" hotheads in their 30s.

Matt Bondy on :

Realism is going to make a heck of a comeback, and it's already begun. As the geo-strategic contours of the next decade begin to take shape, one can't help but wonder if the world is preparing to embark upon another round of great power realpolitik. Matt Bondy

E.J on :

Georgia is not the only victim of hegemony,Iraq and Afghanistan people are also weeping somewhere . Russia claims Bush administration abet Georgia military venture for focus-divertion . Georgia conflicts will promote West's solidairty and transfer people's sight off the atrocity happened in Iraq and Afghanistan. Russia, at odds with the United States over Georgia, will press the U.N. Security Council on Tuesday to condemn U.S.-led air strikes in Afghanistan that killed dozens of civilians, diplomats said. The Russian delegation has drafted a statement that would say the council's 15 member states are "seriously concerned" about the U.S.-led coalition attacks on Aug. 22, which the U.N. mission in Afghanistan says it believes left 90 civilians dead, most of them children. It's not the best way to condole those allied Nation's military staffs' sacrifice. Russia and the United States are permanent members of the council with veto power, along with France, Britain and China. I doubt France, Britain will support such draft. 90 civilians death will definitely not overweigh Britain and France's friendship with USA. Britain politicians never truely believe in human rights , they chase for wealth and power for now and for ever. Russia's draft statement, which several diplomats said had no chance of getting the unanimous backing it would need for approval, also says council members "deplore" the fact that this has happened before in Afghanistan. "I think the Americans want to divert attention from Iraq and Afghan ,They want to annoy the Russians with Georgia for Polar Bear's compromise on Iran's nuclear issue and US Missile defence system along Russia's border" said one diplomat on the sidelines of a council session on unrelated matters. Russia's U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin was asked whether the draft statement will be approved by Britain and France, but he declined to comment. "We hope those countries who continually criticize other country's human rights will keep their words!" he told reporters. The council will meet again later on Tuesday to discuss Somalia and the Russian statement, diplomats said. The U.S. military has launched an investigation of the incident, after first saying it was unaware of any civilian casualties in an air strike.

Pat Patterson on :

Just for the sake of curiosity how many times are you going to publish the same aplogetics? Or should I just assume that any time I see E.J. I should continue on to the next comment without stopping.

E.J on :

Patterson, when we talk about tragedy happened in Afghanistan a week ago, how can you behave so indifferently and so ir-responsibly. Just for the sake of curiosity, are you a scrub politician or a mosquito-like journalist hanging out here all day and all night? There is no difference for me , these two kinds of guys are all chasing for power and money in the name of holiness. I never heard of your critique on Georgia's bombardment on South Oseetia which left thousands of civilian victims, never heard of your critique on Iraq war which left about one million of innocent Iraq people's death and casualty.You condemn Sudan and Zimbabwe administration , but never mention UK and its western allies support White-racists to make lots of atrocity against African natives, that just happened before Mugabee actually carry out its land reform. African Union's peacekeeping officials astonished by Sudan rebel forces most sophisticated weapons (at least in Africa ). There is no wonder the rebellion strength reject Sudan government's ceasefire appeal. They had got oracle from Western power that West would rather like a pro-West Sudan government than the current bloody conflicts. Pat , your moral sense is highly twisted . most of time Human rights are used by your media and government as a tool to reach its goal to expand its strategic sphere. You are fooled by some strength. believe or not , you are not smart as you think of yourself.

Pat Patterson on :

What bombardment? Don't you need a requisite number of bodies to prove that claim? Neither Russia nor South Ossetia make that claim anymore. Sort of Russia's version of the nonexistent massacre at Jenin with no bodies and no wounded found. And since this thread is not about Afghanistan, Zimbabwe or Sudan then I really don't have to say anything about those tragedies. We went through these aerial bombardment of civilian charges before. The seem to crop up regularly and last until as usual no proof of casualties at the number claimed ever surfaces or one of the dead people show up with their identity cards provided by Kabul to get cheap cooking oil. Wait until there is a reliable study and if true I can guarantee that the pilots reponsible, if they violated the ROEs, will be grounded and court martialed if in violation of the UCMJ or the pertinent Geneva Conventions. But I did hear a rumor that a group of American congressmen are going to introduce a bill condemning Russia for killing 129 of its own citizens in 2002 at the Nord-Ost theater by gas attack and then forgettin to bring an antidote for the civilians. Another treaty the Russians signed and broke when it became inconvenient. Plus the West and the Russian public is still waiting for a public explanation or investigation into what happened at the theater. I would suggest not holding your breath but let's invade Georgia instead. It's more fun and it'll be an easy win.

E.J on :

US air strike massacres civilians in western Afghanistan - 26 Aug 2008 ... By Sunday, the death toll from the air strike had been revised upward. .... on August 22 found that 55 percent of respondents blame the US ... www.wsws.org/articles/2008/aug2008/afgh-a26.shtml - 类似网页 76 civilians killed in airstrike, Afghan officials say. Reuters. Published: August 22, 2008. E-Mail Article. Listen to Article. Printer-Friendly ... www.iht.com/articles/2008/08/22/asia/afghan.php Paterson, There are hundreds of articles concerning the said Afghanistan air strike,which leads to dozens of civilians death. You don't need to pretend you are impartial and be honest to facts. You are not unique ,not more intelligent than your fellow citizens, you hear what you want to hear, you see what you want to see. Ignore the naked truth and ask for "prooves". THere is no any convincing reasons for you to deride Russia's media. Western media's disgraceful performance in their Tibet coverage can not be explained by their staffs' unprofessional skill. They cook data (including pictures) to meet their political goal. Fox News reporter made a very very awful bad example in their live- TV program. The reporter ask a refugee from South Ossetia for proof of Russia's atrocity. But the refugee accuse of Saakashvili's babaric bombardment on South Ossetia . Fox News reporter wildly and disgracefully seize the mac-phone and cut the Tv program. I guess the only comparable thing is India TV program. Within that program a Chinese woman angrily charges Tibet rioters' bloody violence against civilians in Chinese, but the Indian commentator talk about China cruely crackdown and the subtitle(caption) on the bottom of the screen says Tibetan peopele criticize Beijing Government. I don't blame Indian reporter, editor's ludicrous TV program,They don't know Chinese language and they too trust their BBC colleagues. I think BBC should be responsible for the whole farce. Now BBC make ridiculous claim against Russia based on faked prooves. BBC did not contaminate UK's glory,The colonial and opium-trade state never have golory in histoty.I am concerned about the west world's reputation. BBC overdraft western world 's credibility so much. God bless BBC,God bless western world!

E.J on :

Pat,You must ignore something. Check these: US air strike massacres civilians in western Afghanistan - 26 Aug 2008 ... By Sunday, the death toll from the air strike had been revised upward. .... on August 22 found that 55 percent of respondents blame the US ... www.wsws.org/articles/2008/aug2008/afgh-a26.shtml 76 civilians killed in airstrike, Afghan officials say. Reuters. Published: August 22, 2008. E-Mail Article. Listen to Article. Printer-Friendly ... www.iht.com/articles/2008/08/22/asia/afghan.php Paterson, There are hundreds of articles concerning the said Afghanistan air strike,which leads to dozens of civilians death. You don't need to pretend you are impartial and be honest to facts. You are not unique ,not more intelligent than your fellow citizens, you hear what you want to hear, you see what you want to see. Ignore the naked truth and ask for "prooves". THere is no any convincing reasons for you to deride Russia's media. Western media's disgraceful performance in their Tibet coverage can not be explained by their staffs' unprofessional skill. They cook data (including pictures) to meet their political goal. Fox News reporter made a very very awful bad example in their live- TV program. The reporter ask a refugee from South Ossetia for proof of Russia's atrocity. But the refugee accuse of Saakashvili's babaric bombardment on South Ossetia . Fox News reporter wildly and disgracefully seize the mac-phone and cut the Tv program. I guess the only comparable thing is India TV program. Within that program a Chinese woman angrily charges Tibet rioters' bloody violence against civilians in Chinese, but the Indian commentator talk about China cruely crackdown and the subtitle(caption) on the bottom of the screen says Tibetan peopele criticize Beijing Government. I don't blame Indian reporter, editor's ludicrous TV program,They don't know Chinese language and they too trust their BBC colleagues. I think BBC should be responsible for the whole farce. Now BBC make ridiculous claim against Russia based on faked prooves. BBC did not contaminate UK's glory,The colonial and opium-trade state never have golory in histoty.I am concerned about the west world's reputation. BBC overdraft western world 's credibility so much. God bless BBC,God bless western world!

Pat Patterso on :

Let's see you claim hundreds of sites support the bombing story in Afghanistan then you reprint claims of widely different numbers of casualties as proof. I'll wait until someone more reliable then a wire service, if you read each story carefully, that is merely rephrasing the initial UN claim. Which as been pointed out before has not been the most reliable of sources, Jenin comes to mind. But I also notice that HRW which has posted on its website that as of today they still can only confirm 44 dead in South Ossetia from the 8th. Where are the other bodies? Why haven't UN or Red Cross officials join either the bodies or the graves so a forensic investigation can begin. What a propaganda coup that would be for the Russians and South Ossetians to show these unfortunate people's remains unless the whole thing is as it appears part of the last 200 tears of disinformation practiced by the Empire, the Soviets and now the Putinistas. It's as if people are reporting dragon sightings from a friend of a friend who heard it from a truck driver who swore it was true. Let's have some proof! When or if Russia ever again has a free press then I would be glad to take their interpretation into account. But until then a biased Reuters or Fox News is better than anything coming out of Russia. Unless of course Russia does have a well hidden independent press and has stopped killing journalists without notice of the West. By the way those humanitarian aid deliveries are going along fine regardless of what is claimed by the Russian press. Batumi, look it up on a map.

Joe Noory on :

The convincing reason to distrust the electronic media in russia is that it's entirely controlled by either the state, or those closely connected to it. It's also too utterly monolithic to be possible. Lo, the "dozens and dozens" of reports generally citing the same wire story: on 90 civilians being killed in a US airstrike in Afghanistan, it turns out is specious. Regrettably, five civilians were killed. 25 combattants were too. Are we to take your links to the World Socialist website to be without a bias or position? Are we to take your selective outrage to be an affirmation of the genuine decency of the Taliban and al Queda? Get real. Your outrage is so selective that it's implausible. The massacres in the Sudan date back two decades before 9-11, and "enlightened" Europa ignored it. In fact the only people working at a humanitarian solution were conservative American Christians. Now tell me, how was a position taken by the US supposed to change Europe's past neglect and failure?

E.J on :

Havn't you seen Fox news TV program on South Ossetia incidents. Fox News staff -Shep Smith behave really like a tyrant. He interrupt several time when a little girl and her mother want to criticize Georgia's atrocity in South Ossetia . Ironically the American-Georgian woman ends her speech with "I know you don't want to broadcast such thing...". A question mark haunt in my mind? what Fox News want to cover up? The truth, The naked truth of South Ossetia incidents! You can google to find what comments Putin made to Western media! I understand why western media behave so unprofessional ,so rude . They have their own reasons for example for bussiness or for politic reason.When I evaluate a media is reliable or not , I always analyse whether they have their own interests there. It's ridiculous to lable all the non-western media or socialist media as unreliable source. check Anti-CNN website records so many western medias lie in Tibet coverage. Check the most updating posts here for your beloved and be-trust media: (red cross Sweden) NGO's propaganda http://lkcn.net/bbs/index.php?showtopic=180093&st=0

Pat Patterson on :

Ok, I did go to the IRC website again and on the homepage there is a link to a description of the problems that are in existence. Georgia has to deal with 12,300 refugees, from both South Ossetia and Georgia while South Ossetia reports only 1,170 that have fled into Russia. The IRC goes on to say how difficult it is to move around Georgia, considering the roads are still blocked with equipment and roadblocks that were promised to be removed last Friday. And not surprisingly reporters are still banned from going to South Ossetia or to the border areas of Russia to check on the claims. Much like Russia did after the disaster of the First Chechen War. The AP and the BBC both witnessed looting by both the Russians and the South Ossetians and were promptly arrested and expelled. But no such restriction has been placed on Russian or for that matter the somewhat sympathetic CNA. So which do you think we should rely on for news the nonexistent or what can be checked and corrected when wrong. And we have already had to face the ramblings of the anti-CNN readers which sound suspiciously like some of the supposed Russians posting here. Volumes of text, ridiculous links and then no response to any countrafactual posts.

John in Michigan, USA on :

E.J., You still haven't responded to my points about the earlier "wedding" "massacre". How do we know this new incident isn't more of the same? It certainly sounds like it. The World Socialist Web site is not a credible source. They are pure propaganda. If you are going to link to a source like that, you should at least bother to learn how to make a proper, clickable link (BBCode) so that at least your socialist brothers will get a slightly higher rank from Google. You also link to an International Herald-Tribune article. They are a real newspaper, at least. And like the real newspaper, they present more than one side: "A spokesman for the Defense Ministry in Kabul said U.S. special forces and Afghan troops had been carrying out an operation against a commander named Mulla Sidiq. "'Twenty-five Taliban were killed, including Sidiq and one other commander,' said the spokesman, General Zaher Azimi. 'Unfortunately, five civilians were killed in the bombing.'" So even the Afghan government can't agree as to what happened. What's wrong with waiting and gathering more information before we make conclusions about this incident? May we look forward to your outrage the next time the Taliban kill a bunch of civilians? When was the last time you denounced them?

Pat Patterson on :

John-An [url=http://yahoo.com/s/ap/20080831/ap_on_re_as/afghanistan]Afghan commander in Herat[/url] stated that the claim came from only one man on the Afghan commission as they had not released the report yet. It appears now that the fighting was instigated by a local political feud when one family fingered one of their business compeititors and the targeted family shot first. There have still been absolutely no reliable sources about the number of civilian casualties though the Afghans and the ISAF are firm on the 25 number of armed combatants killed. Also noteworthy is no longer is there any mention of an air strike which means that the damage was caused by the weaponry of the ISAF and secondary explosions. Unfortunatly it does appear likely that most of the casualties were possibly civilians.

John in Michigan, USA on :

Can't get your link to work. Yahoo search give me any obvious matches. Can you remember any keywords from the report?

Pat Patterson on :

I checked the link when posting but it doesn't work now. Anyway try Yahoo News or the AP. The article is headlined as Afghan Commission:US Troops Were Fired On First by Jason Straziuso on 8/31. That should do it but also try Yahoo News and type in "Afghan commander in Herat..."

Marie Claude on :

I won't put a disgrace label on the american air-strikes in Afghanistan, we all know that the Talibani hide among the population, plus the american air-strike save the rest of the Frenchs that were engaged in a bad "embuscade" lately, where 10 of them died.

Pat Patterson on :

I'm not to sure if you mean that the US strike was in support of the French or even if it was the same Taliban that attacked the convoy. But the French were attacked near Sarobi, which is near the Pakistan border almost due east of Kabul. While the bombing, or missile strike, depending on who is talking occurred in the western province of Shindand. Completely across Afghanistan near its border with Iran.

Marie Claude on :

"Au cours des neufs heures de combat, auquel 500 personnels de la coalition ont été engagés, sans compter l'appui aérien des Américains, "une quarantaine d'insurgés ont été mis hors de combat", dont deux responsables talibans. Dans les jours qui ont suivis, des opérations menées par la coalition, impliquant des moyens aériens et sans doute des forces spéciales américaines, ont abouti à la mise hors de combat d'une autre quarantaine de combattants ennemis, ainsi qu'à la destruction de stocks de munitions. " The french soldiers were brave, they kept fighting. the help arrived one hour and a half after that the first casualties occured it's what I read on a defense blog

Pat Patterson on :

That was my understanding too, a mixed force of French and Canadian troops plus air overwatch by the ISAF of American gunships over saw the relief of the column. But the ambush and the bombing were five days apart.

John in Michigan, USA on :

Marie-Claude, Thanks for your comments. It sounds like the French soldiers were caught in an ambush (embuscade) only because they were doing difficult work "outside the wire".

Marie Claude on :

yes, I got a video of the regiment that was taken just before the ambush, some of them died since. http://www.france24.com/fr/20080826-patrouille-taliban-parachutiste-rpima-afghanistan-reportage-embarque&navi=MONDE notice in their comments that pakistani and chechens are among the Talibani

Joe Noory on :

Woah, and you'll eat up any kind of pleasant sounding hyperbole as well - right around 1 in a 1000 Americans has Georgian heritage, so maybe THEY'VE never heard of the place as well? Besides, with all the usual pedantic criticisms of Americans being insular, when did we become TOO intereted in places that your garden variety western European has never taken any interest in? I really detest this childish european practice of constructing self-serving insulting barbs based entirely on comparing theior high culture to others' low culture, and basing it on unexamined, unverified "home truthes".

Guess? on :

For the real story of Russia and Georgia may I present the adventurous Totten: http://www.michaeltotten.com/archives/2008/08/the-truth-about-1.php

John in Michigan, USA on :

Outstanding. Provides the best information yet about how the conflict escalated, and interesting details that may explain why Russia has been somewhat successful in suggesting that Georgia initiated hostilities. Totten's sources talk about the tit-for-tat artillery exchanges during June, July and August of 2008. They also talk about how Russia or the Ossetians with Russian support imported various thugs as paramilitaries. Reading between the lines, it seems reasonable to speculate that Georgia, or elements of Georgia, also made a similar use of paramilitaries. However, so far I've seen no evidence that Georgia's alleged misbehavior extended outside of the recognized international borders of Georgia into N. Ossetia or other parts of Russia itself. And in all this, if Russia wants to be considered a respectable international partner for countries like Germany, shouldn't it be held to the same higher standards as the US or other European countries? Why isn't Russia condemned for using WW II style artillery barrages? Don't they claim to have precision-guided munitions? Aren't they rich with oil so they can afford these munitions? Totten's article is an interesting complement to The Telegragh's "[url=http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/georgia/2570754/Georgia-conflict-How-a-flat-tyre-took-the-Caucasus-to-war.html]How a flat tyre took the Caucasus to war[/url]". I can't prove it, but I do wonder if elements of the Russian military might sabotage their own diplomat's tire. Or, maybe the diplomat's tire was all part of the plan...the unanswered question -- if the diplomat was able to phone his Georgian counterpart to explain the problem, wouldn't he also be able to phone Moscow and ask for a delay?

David on :

How does Barack Obama's support of NATO membership for Georgia differ from the position of Merkel/Steinmeier? Seems to be a consensus opinion in Europe and the US, not just a reflex reaction to the GOP.

Berndt on :

@ David You ask what the difference between Merkel's and Obama's position is. It seems to me that Obama and Merkel claim that they have not changed their position on NATO membership action plan (MAP) for Georgia. Obama was in favor of MAP for Georgia before the latest crisis and still is. If it were up to him, Georgia would already have MAP from NATO, right? Merkel was against MAP for Georgia before and still is now. That's the difference. This is what Obama said recently: [quote]I have consistently called for deepening relations between Georgia and transatlantic institutions, including a Membership Action Plan for NATO, and we must continue to press for that deeper relationship.[/quote] http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0808/Obama_also_cites_NATO_membership_for_Georgia.html After some misleading press reports, Merkel clarified her position in a TV interview last weekend. She said that she has not changed her position since the Bucharest summit, when she was againt MAP for Georgia. Asked whether Georgia should get MAP at the next NATO summit, she just said that the next summit shall be used for an evaluation of the situation, but that she does not expect a decision regarding MAP. Therefore, I believe that Merkel's support for NATO membership for Georgia is like her support for EU membership for Turkey. It is going to be postponed endlessly. Here are the relevant Merkel quotes, which I tried to summarize above: [quote]ZDF: Die Nahtstelle des Konflikts ist im Moment Georgien. Die Frage, die Sie jetzt entscheiden müssen ist: Gibt man Georgien den Status eines offiziellen Nato-Beitrittskandidaten? Das ist beim letzten Nato-Gipfel nicht geschehen und Sie waren explizit dagegen. Haben Sie ihre Meinung geändert? Merkel: Nein, ich habe meine Meinung nicht geändert. Aber ich war auch explizit dafür, dass Georgien die Perspektive der NATO-Mitgliedschaft bekommen soll und ich habe das sowohl in Sotchi, als auch in Tiflis noch einmal wiederholt. Ich habe es auch ganz bewusst in Sotchi wiederholt, weil Russland sicherlich auch zur Kenntnis nehmen muss, dass die ehemaligen Republiken der Sowjetunion heute freie Staaten sind, die über ihre Zukunft entscheiden. Und die Nato ist kein Bündnis des Kalten Krieges, sondern ein zukunftsfähiges auf Werten basierendes Bündnis. ZDF: Soll es beim nächsten Gipfel den Status eines offiziellen Beitrittskandidat für Georgien geben? Merkel: Beim nächsten Gipfel in Bukarest gibt es eine erste Bewertung der Situation, aber die Entscheidung wird meiner Auffassung nach nicht fallen. Wir haben hier ganz klar einen Zeitplan festgelegt und insofern sind wir auf dem Weg. Ich möchte es an dieser Stelle aber noch einmal politisch betonen - Georgien und die Ukraine werden Mitglieder der Nato sein.[/quote] http://www.bundesregierung.de/nn_1264/Content/DE/Interview/2008/08/2008-08-24-merkel-sommerinterview-zdf.html

Pat Patterson on :

I hadn't seen the latter explanation so it does seem clear that there is a difference between Sen. Obama's position and Ch. Merkel. However it should be noted that it's probably not a leap of faith to infer from recent polls that show a majority of Americans approve to placing the anti-missile system in Poland and the Czech Republic would also indicate support for Georgia being allowed into NATO. But if anyone has any polling data from a recognizable source I would withdraw the comment.

Pat Patterson on :

I agree with David in that there doesn't seem much difference between the US and Europe on potential MAP for Georgia, especially since the Russians delivered that very nice reminder that Europe's borders are not just menaced by boat people. Now what is actually done is a different story because new American presidents usually announce sometime in the first six months in office that new information has come up that mitigates some earlier promises. But to be honest the phrasing of the last clause is somewhat confusing. Since France and Germany blocked the last attempt to get Georgia into NATO there obviously had to be a change in thinking somewhere. I'm not too sure what exactly David meant by "...not just a reflex reaction to the GOP." I hope he can explain or at least nicely hint that I simply didn't understand.

E.J on :

Some US politicians made more blatant threats on Russia, They suggest US and West should support Chechnya terrorists. Woah! CIA's tragedy may happened once more. When Bin Laden ends its holy war with Soviet Union with the help of CIA, Who can sense terrorist threat is so approaching to US mainland. let's make a wish that Chechnya terrorists will only target Western powers' opponent -Russia. but If not , We can witness another anti-terrorist hero like Bush Jr. God Bless US ,God Bless CIA

Pat Patterson on :

Which polticians made that threat or is that another one of those facts that don't exist found only on one or two websites? Bin Laden was never trained or financed by the CIA and he spent the war in Pakistan while the Northern Alliance and the Baluchis did most of the fighting. At the time of the fighting he was bankrolling his own small private army and mainly building hospitals and schools in Pakistan targeted at Afghan refugees. Under in spite of the boogey man theory of a CIA agent under every rock the money came out of the congressional committee overseeing secret operations and then funneled to Pakistan via a CIA employee that had been ordered to not interfere with the clandestine services plans, or lack of plans. Get the history right and then draw conclusions!

Marie Claude on :

scroll down to N°29 29- "We note Russia’s ratification of the Partnership for Peace Status of Forces Agreement, and hope that it will facilitate further practical cooperation. We appreciate Russia's readiness to support NATO's ISAF mission in Afghanistan by facilitating transit through Russian territory. We would welcome deepened NATO-Russia cooperation in support of, and agreed by, the Government of Afghanistan, and look forward to building on the solid work already achieved in training Afghan and Central Asian counter-narcotics officers. Our continued cooperation under our Cooperative Airspace Initiative and Russia’s support to Operation Active Endeavour in the Mediterranean contribute to our common fight against terrorism. We also welcome our cooperation on military interoperability, theatre missile defence, search and rescue at sea, and civil emergency planning." http://www.nato.int/docu/pr/2008/p08-049e.html “Still, State Department officials were troubled last year by Saakashvili’s willingness to send police against unarmed protesters and an opposition TV station and to rule, for a time, under a state of emergency. In recent months, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and other officials are said to have warned Saakashvili against taking any military moves that could provoke Moscow, especially a thrust into South Ossetia.” http://www.usnews.com/articles/news/world/2008/08/18/why-washington-has-embraced-georgias-embattled-president.html this was the "worries" of frau Merkel and Mr Sarkozy It's evident that the Georgia adhesion to Nato, would also have not been immediately effective, a few more years would have been requested

Pat Patterson on :

No, because the immediate tactical situation could have been altered even more than the suicide mission against the Roki Tunnel by Georgian paratroopers which did delay the Russian advance one or two days plus incapacitating its commander. NATO, or rather the US would have tasked a geosynchronus orbiting satellite and spotted the movement of Russian men and equipment to the border in late July. Then a few different things could have happened, Georgia could have the best parts of its army back on its own soil from Iraq, it only took three days for all the men and their equipment, even before the fighting broke out, they could have moved some of the Georgian militia into place for a blocking position and the West could have begun to simply ask and then demand to know what the heck the Russians were planning to do on Georgian territory. And all of this could have been leaked with varying degrees of success to the press which would have created a terrible public relations problem for the Russians.

John in Michigan, USA on :

"geosynchronus orbiting satellite" I think you mean [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low_Earth_Orbit]low Earth orbit[/url] satellites. It is much easier to take pictures from 160 - 2000 km (100 - 1240 miles) up, than from geosynchronous orbit which is 35,786 km (22,236 miles) up. We have a few military satellites in geosynchronous orbit, but all of the "spy" satellites you are talking about are in LEO. But other than that, good points.

Pat Patterson on :

Uh, honest I didn't really write that. The dog did it, I have low blood sugar today, the moon is in the wrong phase, etc. So I ended up printing exactly what I had circled in my notes to not to print. Especially since it seems to me that geosynochronus contradicts the idea that a satellite is orbiting the Earth. Thanks for the correction, ouch!

Marie Claude on :

then again, why not having set these missiles like in Poland ? I think that Poland didn't take advices of the other Nato members to sign the contract

Pat Patterson on :

Well, possibly and the US offered to share some of the technology with the other NATO nations as mitigation. But following some of the reason of trying not to provoke the Russians means that actually France was responsible for the main part of World War II because they built the Maginot Line which obviously provoked the Germans.

Marie-Claude on :

woah, you can be funny :-D

E.J on :

Patterson, hold a very childish point that Russia will back off if Georgia had joined the NATO, Someone Patterson-minded even mention the WTO deal and G8 ticket can be used to blackmail Russia. Russia did not yield to pressure from the West, Russia 's president openly recognized the two new states and claim Russia is not afraid of new round of cold war. It's interesting the one who retreat from his exaggerating way is US NAVY. Their coast guard vessels escorted by several US NAVY destroyers on the way to POTI Harbor for humanitarian aid. POTI Harbor is under Russia's control for the moment, Russia threat US NAVY make no provocation on Russia. Then coast guard vessels and US NAVY destroyers disappear in Georgia radar. frankly speaking ,US government and its allies' funny performance earn no respect from outside world. It only give western people(like Patterson) a good feeling, it only save western governments' face from nit-picking western media. That's all. Western powers dismember serbia to squeeze Russia's strategic space, Russia dismember Georgia to safeguard there exists no anti-Russia government along Russia's border. Developing world will not easily follow up either side. Because they doubt such dirty tricks can be used upon themselves. West can Veto Georgia's split and Russia will veto KOSOVO's independence. No one can claim victory (except some arrogant and ignorant guys like P'terson). If we must list someone as the winner, I think USA has the honour. the tension with Russia will solidify the whole west under the leadership of Uncle Sam. IMO, hot-headed and short-sighted Sakozy and Merkel can not fit for such position. Bush or Macain are the only applicable person to implement such despicable mission. God bless the world!

Pat Patterson on :

Then why can't you offer a counterfactual argument that is not a talking point repeated endlessly on every Russian language website in the known universe. What tactical riposte could Russia have made if even a company sized Georgian militia group had got to the Roki Tunnel egress and simply sat there a week or two before the fighting broke out? What would Russia have done if the French, British and German news sources started handing out aerial photos of the buildup of Russian forces along the border of a country that Russia had promised to repect its sovereignty? Why are the Russians holding Poti when they argued they were only protecting their fellow passport holders in South Ossetia? What if Chechnya decides to seek recognition as an independent state much like South Ossetia and Abkhazia have done? Who will trust Russia if it will not honor its treaty obligations, threatens the Poles with a nuclear attack, invades its neighbors on the spur of the moment after two months planning? What investors will leave their money in Russian companies if they think that Russia has become dangerous and unreliable? Even two of the biggest Chinese banks announced after the fact that they were suspending some deals and admitted that they had cashed out of several others. And absolutely what is this nonsense concerning Kosovo when Russia signed on in 1995 and 1999 to allow the command of KFOR the final decision on the status of Kosovo? I can only hope that section of the comment where Russia will veto Kosovo's independence was a botched translation! Unless of course Russia now seeks to restore an area that was not part of Russia and made up of an ethnic and religious group that hates the Slavs, Serbs or Russian. Maybe you should read the treatys first or is Russia now arguing that its interests cancel any of the agreements it has made since 1989? By the way the humanitarian aid was off loaded at the Georgian held port of Batumi. Admiral Kastanov, the Black Sea Fleet commander, was reported by the Interfax News Agency that he was worried that he was already outgunned and feared that two more Burke class destroyers would put him in a very difficult tactical postion with his back to the coast but claimed he could tip the balance again with air support. One can only hope that this support was better then shown against the Georgians. Bluster is nice but tactical superiority has a way of creating peace better than parity. But then it might be instructive for Russia to remember that the last naval victory it had was in 1788, when a Imperial Russian fleet defeated a Turkish fleet. The Russian fleet was commanded by a hero of the American Revolution, John Paul Jones.

E.J on :

Are you kidding ? You don't even know what leads to Russia's interfere with Georgia in South Ossetia. Georgia governor think he can grasp South Ossetia and Abkhazia by force. He order to bombard South Ossetia which results in thousands of people's casualty. When Putin and Bush held private talks in Beijing on Olympic opening ceremony, Putin definitely got no insight as Paterson did . or he will not hurry up back home to decide how to deal with such crisis. I am glad Russia 's immediate involvement make bloody conflicts in South Ossetia not escalating any more. I object Russia dismember Georgia ,I object West dismember serbia as well. In order to disclose west 's hypocritical mask, I would like to see what was going on (I mean the confrontation between Russia and West). Before that actually happened , I want to ask Paterson ,why Kosovo people have the right to build their own country ,while west powers deprive South Ossetia people's right of referendum. Shouldn't Serbia's sovereign be respected also? Does all these mean only pro-West country have such privilege.

Marie Claude on :

uh, should France invade Belgium, cause 50% of the belgian francophones want to be tied with us ?

Pat Patterson on :

Or part of Switzerland(the part that has the cuckoo clocks, chocolate and the bunkers, and all of Haiti. Well, except the French if offered Haiti might very wisely say, "Thanks but no thanks!"

Marie Claude on :

they all are already intoxicated with our national TV, except the Haïtians, too bad for them they rejected their slave statut, that Napoleon offered them back on a silver plate, today they would be a french department !!!

joe on :

Pat and Joe seem to have nailed it. When I first read this article my first thought was if AR sees this they surely will post it. Laugh - predictable

E.J on :

(Comment removed)

E.J on :

(Comment removed)

John in Michigan, USA on :

Typical socialist attitude: respond to a point that I did not make. I didn't say that no civilians died, or that I didn't care if they did. In fact I care enough to question propaganda and try to determine the truth of the matter, whenever possible. Meanwhile we are still waiting to hear you condemn a single Taliban atrocity (or other non ISAF faction, for that matter). Don't those civilians matter to you? It is sad, there are a number of thoughtful (although misguided) socialists out there, I met some of them on the [url=http://www.eurotrib.com/]Eurotrib[/url] blog, but they rarely are able to leave their comfort zone and debate real issues with non-socialists. But maybe you're not a socialist. After all, what socialist would quote Putin's Russia as a credible source?

E.J on :

Oh! you want me criticize Taliban atrocity . There is no problem. They do made a lot of crimes on civilian people. They should be charged and punished. Although I think Tony Blair and Bush are also guilty of inhumanity crime. But as you know for some reason , I would like to forget about it. Since those bunches of Taliban ruffians are avaible there, Why not let them go to hell. God bless USA,God bless Afghanistan people! P.S ludicrous performance by West media and NGO (Red cross Sweden) . Link: http://lkcn.net/bbs/index.php?showtopic=180093&st=0

joe on :

Pat EJ wants to compare the actions of the US to Russia. I think you let him do that. He will collcet to his side of the debate the known suspects.

E.J on :

John_In_Michigan and You have suspected my background. Given that I am a socialist , I am a curious that you guys have convincing reasons to deprive my right of free speech. When all my words were labeled as socialist propaganda, there is no need to answer my question on western media's credibility. Right? I actually dislike socialist and socialism.I am patriotic die-hard. Get tired of western media's rummors against China. Their blatant discrimination make me think some kind of racist feeling reside in western world(esp, in west politician's mind) God Bless Russia, God Bless Serbia! God grant such countries the opportunity to gracefully exist then prosper.

Pat Patterson on :

If you are still typing away then how can you claim that you free speech rights have been infringed. And none of the people who find your comments odd have called for you to be banned rather that you simply take better care to not cite some of the more loony sites as factual. What discrimination against China are you talking about? Pointing out that China does indeed restrict people's free speech results mainly in that the West has to view news from China as suspect is not discrimination. And any opinion based on such narrow and manipulated sources just as unreliable. And yes, if you cite socialist web sites as credible or reactionary sites as credible and then quote yards of text then most people will probably ignore you.

E.J on :

Janusz Bugajski, director of the Eastern Europe Project for the Center for Strategic and International Studies, made assertions like these: disturb Russia by absorbing ukraine and Georgia to NATO,by supporting Chechenya separatists and terrorists. Eastern European countries' "color revolution" were directed by USA government and sponsored by Congress and some US government orgnizations . Bugajski is not a simple guy as he pretended to be. CIA financially and politically manipulate the puppet. Georgia's conflict is not an accident for me. We can draw a conclusion that Russia's backyard will be in trouble before south Ossetia Crisis. Rice visited the tiny state ,Georgia on July with suprising messages. US militant counsellors stationed in Georgia , Georgia think it got necessary strength in politic and military sphere. So they grasp the opportunity(Putin is in Beijing for Olympic ceremony and Medvedevo was on vacation) to launch its bloody bombardment on South Ossetia. As to Western media's ludicros reports on Tibet riots, I had disclose so many fake stuff. You can still turn your deaf ears to that. Anti-CNN records all these stuff. Arguing about which media source is more reliable is off the topic, do you think so ? You can not make any excuse for Western media's despicable tricks there. I don't expect your response concerning these. Your once explainations on Britain's colonial history and its opium-trade greediness make me so astonished yet so disappointed. you sacrifice your crediblity to defend Great Britain's once sins.You still want to convince me with your ? what ? LOL

E.J on :

Check the whole things with that dwarf and coward -Simon Brouwers at: simon.brouwers@redcross.se He is supposed to be in charge of "Red Cross Youth Sweden". He direct that farce against China. I would like to know what explaination the cheat gonna say to you western people (http://lkcn.net/bbs/index.php?showtopic=180093&st=0 ,while anti-cnn website has more infomation on other pictures Simon Brouwers used in their campaign). I once asked his photos or his family's photos. I try to convince him that I can photoshop those pictures to promote the enterprise of anti-drug and anti-prostitute campaign. unfortunately these bunch of Red Cross idiots give me no response. It's easy to criticize China but it is hard to face your western power's true color! Hypocrites ! I got no other word more suitable in this case.

John in Michigan, USA on :

E.J., I read your link at lkcn.net. Thank you for providing evidence. It looks like Jake has done a good job getting the Red Cross of Sweden to admit a very embarrassing mistake with the photographs. I am sure you will point out other media organizations that have problems, but let's focus on this example of the Red Cross of Sweden (RCS). If the information in the item at lkcn.net is correct, then: 1) RCS clearly mislead their readers. China's human rights record is far from perfect, but they used a photo that had very little connection to the problem they were trying to discuss. 1a) They told their readers the photo was proof, when in fact it was only symbolic (in their opinion). 1b) They didn't even get the symbolism correct, since as they admit in their second reply, they confused Nepal and Tibet. Questions for you: 1) Why do you call Simon Brouwers "dwarf and coward"? It seems he (eventually) admitted to a mistake and promised to correct it. That is not the act of a coward or a moral dwarf. 2) What is the evidence he or the RCS acted out of malice? Perhaps they are just ignorant? 3) I assume you were joking about requesting photos of his family or friends. But why bring up Photoshop when there is no evidence I see that RCS Photoshopped anything? I also looked at anti-CNN for the information about Fox News' Shep Smith being so rude and such a tyrant. I found [url=http://www.anti-cnn.com/forum/cn/thread-90258-1-2.html]this thread[/url]. Google translation does a good job with Chinese as well, as far as I can tell (I read or speak no Chinese); the embedded YouTube video is in English. Perhaps it might seem tyranical or rude to someone who isn't used to watching US-style cable news. They keep most interviews very, very short. It is not the best way, but it is normal for them. It is normal for US-style cable news to interrupt with a commercial. The important thing is, Smith kept his promise to let the aunt continue after the commercial. She only gets 30 seconds after the commercial, but [i]this is normal[/i]. I want to emphasize that [i]the girl and her aunt were getting the same treatment that everybody gets in US-style cable news[/i]. If you say that this is a flaw in US-style cable news, you are correct. However, it is not anti-Russian, or anti-Ossetian, they were treated the same as any other guests. I can understand why the aunt is bitter. Her niece has been through something horrible, and she gets about 60 seconds total, with a commercial in between, to tell the world. She is also well-prepared and skillful. Smith asked about her niece's direct experiences which are facts. The aunt managed to change the topic to the aunt's opinions about the cause of the war and who is to blame. Most ordinary people aren't able to do that. Also, you are wrong to state that Western media have not reported the fact that Georgian artillery was used in civilian areas, perhaps even against civilians. That has been going on for months or years, and has been reported. [i]Russia has done the same thing with its artillery[/i]. Also, in spite of what you claim, Western media is generally blaming Georgia for starting the war, even though I believe the situation is much, much more complicated than that. Just look at [url=http://www.michaeltotten.com/archives/2008/08/the-truth-about-1.php]this blog[/url]. You are mistaking cultural differences, and perhaps even misunderstandings, for anti-Ossetian bias. I am delighted to hear that you are not a socialist. I hope this doesn't get you in trouble with the Chinese government! But you need to understand that Western media, although far from perfect, are not controlled by any government the way you seem to think they are (and the way that most of the Chinese press in fact is controlled).

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