Georgian 'Cease Fire' a Sham

Rick Moran
Some day when the history of our times is written, futire historians may very well marvel at the utter stupidity and wide-eyed naivete of the west when facing aggression.

Take Nicolas Sarkozy of France, for instance. Here we have a reasonably intelligent, worldly, supposedly knowledgeable fellow who just brokered a cease fire deal with Russia and Georgia that he and the EU were congratulating themselves for being so pacific and correct. They actually believed words on a paper would stop Russia from doing what Russia does best; ruthlessly promote their own interests and the Europeans be damned.

Meanwhile, Russia read the fine print of the agreement and are gleefully, systematically, going through Georgian towns like a horde of Huns, burning and looting while threatening to isolate the capitol Tblisi by cutting off the main east-west road in the country and cut the city off from its Black Sea ports.

The key is a small rail and highway center named Gori. And if the Russians get to keep that, they cut Georgia in two, dismembering it and leaving the pieces scattered and weak - ripe for domination by Moscow:


It soon became clear that the six-point deal not only failed to slow the Russian advance, but it also allowed Russia to claim that it could push deeper into Georgia as part of so-called additional security measures it was granted in the agreement. Mr. Sarkozy, according to a senior Georgian official who witnessed the negotiations, also failed to persuade the Russians to agree to any time limit on their military action.

By mid-morning, European officials were warning of the risks of appeasing Russian aggression, while Georgian officials lamented the West's weak leverage.

"I'm talking about the impotence and inability of both Europe and the United States to be unified and to exert leverage, and to comprehend the level of the threat," said the senior Georgian official, who had sat in on the talks between Mr. Sarkozy and Georgia's president, Mikheil Saakashvili.

The senior Georgian official later made a copy of the deal available to The New York Times with what he said were notes marking changes the Georgians had asked for but failed to attain.




What the Georgians wanted most of all was the Russians to leave Gori. But, as many predicted, once ensconced on Georgian territory, getting the Russians to leave becomes problematic. In fact, the idea that Sarkozy actually agreed to this condition is so breathtakingly stupid, that the Frenchman's sanity should be checked:
In meetings in Moscow, the Russians insisted on two additional points, the Georgian official said, and Mr. Sarkozy carried these demands to Georgia, landing shortly after 10 p.m. Tuesday and driving straight to the Parliament building to meet Mr. Saakashvili.

Negotiating from a position of strength, the Russians demanded the fifth point, allowing their troops to act in what was termed a peacekeeping role, even outside the boundaries of the separatist enclaves where the war began, with an understanding that later an international agreement might obviate this need.

The vague language of the fifth point allows Russian peacekeepers to "implement additional security measures" while awaiting an international monitoring mechanism.

Holy Smokes how transparent can you get? This is an open invitation for Russian troops to settle in and make themselves at home on the sovereign territory of Georgia until the world gets around - if it ever does - to sending peacekeeping troops to take the place of Russians. 

In the meantime, Tblisi is isolated, the Georgian army is wrecked, the Russian army gets to manuever in the countryside where there are already several towns and villages ablaze with refugees pouring out of the occupation zone, and Putin gets to determine for himself what constitutes "security" for South Ossetia. 

And Sarkozy is congratulating himself?

 
Some day when the history of our times is written, futire historians may very well marvel at the utter stupidity and wide-eyed naivete of the west when facing aggression.

Take Nicolas Sarkozy of France, for instance. Here we have a reasonably intelligent, worldly, supposedly knowledgeable fellow who just brokered a cease fire deal with Russia and Georgia that he and the EU were congratulating themselves for being so pacific and correct. They actually believed words on a paper would stop Russia from doing what Russia does best; ruthlessly promote their own interests and the Europeans be damned.

Meanwhile, Russia read the fine print of the agreement and are gleefully, systematically, going through Georgian towns like a horde of Huns, burning and looting while threatening to isolate the capitol Tblisi by cutting off the main east-west road in the country and cut the city off from its Black Sea ports.

The key is a small rail and highway center named Gori. And if the Russians get to keep that, they cut Georgia in two, dismembering it and leaving the pieces scattered and weak - ripe for domination by Moscow:


It soon became clear that the six-point deal not only failed to slow the Russian advance, but it also allowed Russia to claim that it could push deeper into Georgia as part of so-called additional security measures it was granted in the agreement. Mr. Sarkozy, according to a senior Georgian official who witnessed the negotiations, also failed to persuade the Russians to agree to any time limit on their military action.

By mid-morning, European officials were warning of the risks of appeasing Russian aggression, while Georgian officials lamented the West's weak leverage.

"I'm talking about the impotence and inability of both Europe and the United States to be unified and to exert leverage, and to comprehend the level of the threat," said the senior Georgian official, who had sat in on the talks between Mr. Sarkozy and Georgia's president, Mikheil Saakashvili.

The senior Georgian official later made a copy of the deal available to The New York Times with what he said were notes marking changes the Georgians had asked for but failed to attain.




What the Georgians wanted most of all was the Russians to leave Gori. But, as many predicted, once ensconced on Georgian territory, getting the Russians to leave becomes problematic. In fact, the idea that Sarkozy actually agreed to this condition is so breathtakingly stupid, that the Frenchman's sanity should be checked:
In meetings in Moscow, the Russians insisted on two additional points, the Georgian official said, and Mr. Sarkozy carried these demands to Georgia, landing shortly after 10 p.m. Tuesday and driving straight to the Parliament building to meet Mr. Saakashvili.

Negotiating from a position of strength, the Russians demanded the fifth point, allowing their troops to act in what was termed a peacekeeping role, even outside the boundaries of the separatist enclaves where the war began, with an understanding that later an international agreement might obviate this need.

The vague language of the fifth point allows Russian peacekeepers to "implement additional security measures" while awaiting an international monitoring mechanism.

Holy Smokes how transparent can you get? This is an open invitation for Russian troops to settle in and make themselves at home on the sovereign territory of Georgia until the world gets around - if it ever does - to sending peacekeeping troops to take the place of Russians. 

In the meantime, Tblisi is isolated, the Georgian army is wrecked, the Russian army gets to manuever in the countryside where there are already several towns and villages ablaze with refugees pouring out of the occupation zone, and Putin gets to determine for himself what constitutes "security" for South Ossetia. 

And Sarkozy is congratulating himself?