Friday, August 8, 2008

Ongoing conflict in South Ossetia

Anyone who has been keeping up with the news in the past week or so will have noticed the ever enlarging tension growing between the Georgian and Russian governments regarding South Ossetia. For background purposes, South Ossetia is the unrecognised territory which is currently under dispute of ownership between the Georgians, and the the Russians—who want to keep the territory to essentially prevent them being blocked in by NATO (especially when Ukraine, most likely, becomes a member state).

It's, basically, quite a complicated situation.

The situation has been escalating for just over a week after Georgian forces stormed South Ossetia in the hope of claiming the territory. Several paramilitary troops from South Ossetia were killed early on in the conflict.

Things took a turn for the worse when Russia decided they would press though North Ossetia, across the Russian-Ossetia border and towards the south—perhaps an understandable move considering there are many Russian citizens in the area. Moscow, specifically President Medvedev, has stated that:

"According to the constitution, I, as the President of the Russian Federation, must protect lives and the dignity of Russian citizens wherever they are. Those responsible for the deaths of our citizens will be punished."

Now, I can see where President Medvedev is coming from on this one. The Georgians acted pretty irrationally and spontaneously, bar the permit by NATO at Bucharest, over an area which they knew Russia would retaliate over. It really does seem like a little bit of a suicidal plan for Georgia. Let's give some perspective on that with a brief comparison of military capabilities (taken from the Wikipedia article):

Population of Georgia: 4.6 million
Population of Russia: 140 million
Standing army of Georgia: 18,000 personnel
Standing army of Russia: 1,037,000 personnel
Georgian tanks: 128
Russian tanks: 23,000

I think you see where this is going. If anyone can offer rationale behind the Georgian's tactics, please feel free to explain. In fact, let's make that a question to you all.

"Who knows a reasonable explanation for why Georgia would actually try and fight against the Russians?"

It's mind-boggling.


Diligent Terrier said...

I think that was a pretty stupid thing for the Russians to do.

gtn said...

Well, I'm not so sure how I feel about it. Georgia is a sovereign country, but those breakaway provinces wanted to break away. If it was a democratic province breaking away from a communist country, we'd be in there defending it ourselves.

Of course I'm against the Russian expansionist ideals, as well as their communism (weakened though it has been.) I don't like that the provinces broke away in the direction of Russia, but the truth is that if the people have a right to do what ever they want (Vox Populi, Vox Dei, or We the People), then there's nothing wrong with them breaking away and even less wrong with Russia stepping in. We can only say it's wrong if something other than the people is our ultimate standard of how we run government, our Vox Dei. Perhaps the literal Vox Dei?

I am very much convinced that America has always had God as its ultimate standard, and though it has temporarily given up that standard to a large slice of the media, the government, and consequently education, that secularist trend is about to reverse. See what happens if McCain gets elected.

I guess I've gone out of my way quite a bit, but my point was essentially that our government has no real reason to say that Russia has gone wrong.

Oh, and I find it funny that some people are glad we get to hate the Russians again. Check out Red State Update.