Aug 25, 2008

The Noose Tightens

The noose continued to tighten today, as Russia’s upper house of parliament voted 130-0 "urging" President Medvedev to recognize Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states. (Eternal Remont also notes how we’ve returned to the good old days of unanimous declarations by workers, soldiers, and farmers in the Supreme Soviet, err, “Federation Council.”)

Yet, after luring Saakashvili into a fight he could not possibly win, the Russian Foreign Ministry continues to press the advantage.

"...President Mikhail Saakashvili has destroyed the dream for a very long time if not for ever that Georgians, Abkhazians and Ossetians could live together in one state," said Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin.

While Putin’s office is clearly stage managing this charade, it has allowed Medvedev to play either the bold national leader -- protecting "Russian citizens" -- or the courageous peacemaker with the West.

On all fronts, Saakashvili is out-matched. It's like watching Muhammad Ali fight a one legged nine-year-old blind girl for the heavy weight title.

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