Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Secret Diplomacy

Poor Saakashvili, either he misinterpreted US/UK signals (signals being the military aid and the international forces training Georgian troops three weeks prior to Georgian attack on South Ossetia, ...) or he did not and ended up being the pawn in this political chess game that just got sacrificed. Now the US knows that the bear is not hybernating. He's alive and well and will come out of its den to roar and do some damage.

Russia's Rambo ready for anything (sorry, need to keep this ridiculousness a little 'lite')

I suspect that no one expected Russia to react as strongly as they did and the US and of course, Sakaashvili, needed to back up quickly because they were losing face big time. Not only were Russia's actions more than they bargained for, the following upping eachother's ante put many in a fear of another Cold war. As it turned out, apparently (!), no need to worry;

DEBKAfile’s political sources report that, as in most cases when international tensions and violence reach dangerous levels, the big powers have instituted secret diplomacy to cool the situation before it gets out of hand in order to formulate new modes of conduct and relations.

This process began with Rice’s visit to France and Tbilsi.

In five hours of arm-twisting, she persuaded Saakashvili to accept clarifications to the ceasefire accord which contradict Washington’s spirited assurances for Georgia’s “territorial integrity.”

Russian troops allowed to remain in Georgia would be “very limited to a light patrolling ability, such as a few kilometers outside of South Ossetia.”

Furthermore, “Russian peacekeepers” would be allowed to “implement additional security measures” until international security can be put in place.

This clause authorizes on behalf of the US and Europe the narrow security strips, which DEBKAfile’s military sources revealed two days ago the Russians are establishing 300-500 meters deep outside the South Ossetian and Abkhazian borders with Georgia.

This American concession was designed as initial impetus for quiet diplomacy with Russia on a settlement in Georgia.

The other concession, which will unfold in time, is the removal of the Georgian president, another of Moscow’s conditions for ending the crisis. While Bush declared the Cold War is over, Saakashvili heaped verbal coals on the standoff with Russia to keep it ablaze.

Back-door US-Russian contacts to de-escalate war of words - after Moscow threatens to nuke Poland

tsaa.. it pays to play poker... and hardball!

And after all this excitement, getting people riled up and killed over nothing other than testing the waters of Russia's capability and reaction, we can apparently (it's a theme) expect a "Bush-Putin Summit". Oive, going fishing too perhaps?

ok ok..moving on. So now the US and Russia are working to restore their working relationship, whatever that means. So the US ambassador to Russia in Moscow gets to bring the happy news;

Ambassador Beyrle’s words were the first public departure by a US official from the critical remarks of Moscow’s conduct heard uniformly from Bush, Condoleezza Rice and Robert Gates.

The ambassador said Washington had not sanctioned Georgia’s initial actions when on Aug. 8, after a succession of tense skirmishes, Georgian forces attacked South Ossetia, triggering a massive Russian reaction when its peacekeepers came under fire.

PHEW! And here I was having sleepless nights dreaming of nuclear bombs and fall out, you know, the kind of stuff I dreamt about when I was growing up in the Netherlands thinking, shit, I hope no idiot is ever going to push that button!!

All is well on the Western front.. apparently!

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Blogger lindsaylobe said...

Hi Ingrid
At the end of the day it’s hard not to conclude politicians behave like little chidren, blaming one another and relying on others to help them out when in trouble.
I think the Georgian President in attacking Sothern Ossetia was either extremely naive or given false assurances or maybe it was a combination of both.
The diplomats and negotiators since Russia scaled down it’s military response behind the scenes have had more time to consider the all the facts and consequently were able to take a more sanguine view to come up with sensible compromises.
As is always the case it is a lesson in the fragility of policy that relies on strategic alliances rather than policies based on integrity.
Best wishes

12:02 AM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

"it is a lesson in the fragility of policy that relies on strategic alliances rather than policies based on integrity."

that sums it up doesn't it? of course, it also depends who is at the helm. Still, the strategic alliances will never be based on integrity. When powerful, it's difficult to not only do away with it, but to have an enlightened experience that only wisdom can give that tells you that you really never had true power in the first place..

thanks for stopping by Linday, somehow, the DNC is not interesting to me as part of me is still disgusted with the democratic party. anyway, I better start my day and get the kids ready for school..


6:35 AM  
Blogger an average patriot said...

You are good! Did you see this?
Pushing Russia Into the Cold
by Patrick J. Buchanan (more by this author)
Posted 08/26/2008 ET

A year after taking power, in June 1934, Adolf Hitler made his first visit abroad -- to his idol Benito Mussolini in Venice.

Babbling on incessantly about "Mein Kampf "and the Negroid strain in Mediterranean peoples, the Fuhrer made a dismal impression.

"What a clown this Hitler is," Mussolini told an aide.

Two weeks later, Hitler executed the Roehm purge and murdered scores of old Stormtrooper comrades. In late July, Austrian Nazis, attempting a coup, assassinated Chancellor Engelbert Dollfuss, a friend of Mussolini whose wife and child were then his guests.

Il Duce ordered four divisions to the Brenner Pass and flew to Vienna to vent his rage and disgust with Hitler. He called a summit at Stresa with Britain and France to agree on military action should Hitler make any new move in violation of Versailles.

At the time, however, Il Duce was also plotting revenge on Abyssinia for a bloody border clash with Italian Somaliland.

Mussolini thought his Allies would understand if he invaded the Ogaden to add an African colony to his new Roman Empire, just as the British and French had so often done in previous decades.

Mussolini miscalculated. Morally outraged, Britain and France went before the League of Nations and had sanctions imposed on Italy that were too weak to defeat her but punitive enough to insult her.

Friendless, isolated and condemned as an aggressor by Europe, Italy and Mussolini had nowhere to turn now but Hitler's Germany.

Thus, over the fate of an Abyssinian slave empire, Britain drove her faithful World War I ally into the arms of a Nazi dictator Mussolini loathed and had wished to confront beside Britain. And Abyssinia was overrun.

Are we making the same mistake in the Caucasus?

Mikheil Saakashvili started this war with his barrage attack and occupation of South Ossetia. Russia's war of retribution was far less violent or excessive than the U.S. bombing of Serbia for 78 days over Kosovo, or our unprovoked war on Saddam Hussein's Iraq, which has brought death to scores of thousands, or Israel's 35 days of bombing of Lebanon for a border skirmish with Hezbollah.

Yet, declared John McCain of Russia, "In the 21st century, nations don't invade other nations." Even Dick Cheney must have guffawed.

Russia must get out now, adds Bush, for South Ossetia and Abkhazia belong to a sovereign Georgia. But when did Bush demand that Israel get off the Golan Heights or withdraw from the birthplace of Jesus, which Israelis have occupied for 41 years, as he demands that Russia get out of the birthplace of Joseph Stalin, which Russia has occupied for two weeks?

As Israel was provoked in 1967, so, too, was Russia provoked.

Russians died in Saakashvili's attack, as American died in Pancho Villa's raid on New Mexico in 1916. We sent "Black Jack" Pershing, future Gen. George Patton and a U.S. army 300 miles into Mexico to kill Villa. Was this proportionate?

If we proceed on a course of isolating Russia from the West, keeping her out of the World Trade Organization, throwing her out of the G-8 and ending cooperation with NATO, where do we think Russia will go? Where did Il Duce go, when he was excommunicated from the West?

Condi Rice compares Vladimir Putin's action in Georgia to Leonid Brezhnev's crushing of the Prague Spring in 1968. She raced to Warsaw to ink a deal to put 10 anti-missile missiles and U.S. Patriot missiles manned by Americans into Poland.

Does the Stanford provost have any idea where the end of this road lies, upon which she and Bush have started the United States?

What do we do if Russia responds to our Patriots in Poland with the Russian S-300 anti-aircraft system in Iran and Syria?

If the United States intends to bring Georgia and Ukraine into NATO and arm them to fight Russia, why should Russia not dissolve the Treaty on Conventional Forces in Europe and move her tank armies into Belarus and up to the borders of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania?

Would we send U.S. troops into the Baltic republics to signal that we will fight Russia to honor our NATO war guarantees? Which NATO allies would fight alongside us against a nuclear-armed Russia?

If we bring Ukraine into NATO, what do we do if Russified east Ukraine secedes and Russia sends troops to back the rebels? Do we send warships into Russia's bathtub, the Black Sea, and commit to fight as long as it takes to restore Ukraine's territorial integrity?

In March 1939, Britain pledged to declare war and fight Germany to the death to guarantee the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Poland. How did that one turn out for Britain and Poland?

Before we start down the road of isolating and encircling Russia with weak NATO allies, let us think through Gen. Petraeus' question in 2003 about Iraq, "Tell me, how does this thing end?"

But, then, these folks never seem to think anything through.

* Reading this article makes me reassert a couple things: Reading this article should make one realize we are in Britain and Poland's position this time and there will be no US to come to the rescue!

With Russia and the US arming the entire middle east and Russia warning they will take us on, Bush's"peaceful" instigation to major war has paid off! Sadly this is still just taking shape and just beginning. This is coming to a head at the perfect time for Bush to take total control of us and prosecute this mess.

There are no surprises or coincidence here only Politicians failing to realize the brevity of the situation or what is really happening and playing their regular Political games in this facade of a Democracy while this Forever War ramps up!

12:03 PM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

tssss [ingrid sizzle fingers bows to the king]

seriously, right backatcha. Hey, was that the other article in one of the Debkafiles? I saw Pat Buchanan and thought, yikes, I'll have to check that out later..are we talking 'the' Pat Buchanan or someone else?
Isn't this exactly the same situation. Ok, exactly as in, what a template! That is why the Arabs have this proverb; the enemy of my enemy, is my friend!

excellent comparison, thanks for posting that here!
(alrightie, back to scrubbing the shower.. indirectly speaking of 'putz' thingies..I'm a regular putz frau today so the computer today is my little coffee break..)


12:56 PM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

ps..the article you posted is EXACTLY the reason 'one' studies, or ought to study, history. Or political history. I'm very much a political history perspective kinda gal. If that fails, the political economy will back any theory up..


12:58 PM  
Blogger an average patriot said...

I am not sure but I think so! Danny has been sending them to me. I have never met Danny but I have met Jerome!He is 90 now and amazing! I just saw one of the cousins at the DNC discussing it and he was an identical younger version of Jerome!
I have gone full circle with these guys! I hit it right off with Jerome but Danny use to try to get me to stop blaming everything on Bush, forget it! And focusing on Bush's forever war, Forget it! Now he is feeding me info!
My biggest obstacle has been that these guys are Politicians and think we have been here before and we can work it out. Forget it! We have never been here before, this is just beginning, and will not be prevented.
Reading this article should make one realize we are in Britain and Poland's position this time and there will be no US to come to the rescue!

1:10 PM  
Blogger an average patriot said...

Yes the Pat Buchanan! It really kills me these mealy mouthed hypocritical Repugs always say you have to remember history or you are doomed to repeat it. Well they are ignoring it and repeating history will be mild as this is going to be dramatically worse!

1:17 PM  
Blogger Robert Rouse said...

Ingrid, that photo at the end is an homage to Dr. Strangelove and the Slim Pickens character riding the bomb. How appropriate, because when it comes to Bush all we have is slim pickings.

1:48 PM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

Jim..who's Danny? and Robert, I've seen parts of that movie once (dh was watching it and since my blogger friend Mash from http://www.docstrangelove.com
'dedicated' his blog to this film, I 'had' to see at least the last part which, as you pointed out, is what this photo is paying homage too. And yes (!), how apropos.[g]


4:42 PM  
Blogger an average patriot said...

You mean Danny and Jerome right! You know Robert! I will try to make it short!
Jerome is the relentless liberal! He has been a grassroots organizer for almost 65 years now.
He is behind every liberal accomplishment long before Vietnam. He is behind the nuclear nonproliferation movement and many, many, many, more. You can google Jerome Grossman or the Relentless Liberal or learn more about him at Relentless liberal
He is 91 now and his son Danny had us meet and I listened to one of his lectures and we had a private meeting afterwards and he brought and signed one of hos books for me. The guy is amazing and his son Danny 65 communicates routinely.
I will cut this short and just say Jerome does not know how to type. He dictates to Danny and they go back and forth until he is happy with it and Danny posts it. He answers questions at lectures but not on his posts. Danny gets back to me!

5:49 PM  

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