Thursday, August 28, 2008

A Little Nation-Building

Russian recognition of the (in)dependence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia is now official. No surprise here, as this was their end game all along. These nations now have a place at the table next to Ruritania, Grand Fenwick, Lower Slobbavia, and of course, Kosovo. Can Transdniestra be far behind?

Last year in Tbilisi, I visited the 6th-century Anchiskhati Church for Saturday Vespers. The church was packed, with services delayed due to a memorial service going on on one side and a baptism underway on the other--the whole Orthodox circle of life under one roof. I went outside for some air, and as it was raining, I shared the shelter of the portico with a beggar lady. Our conversation was limited--obviously--but I was able to determine that she was a Georgian refugee from Abkhazia, one of several hundred thousand uprooted by Russian "peacekeepers." I do not remember what I gave her, but now I wish I have given her more. I suppose she will now have to make room for the influx of Georgians from South Ossetia.

And now I hear that Dick Cheney is on his way to Georgia.

Good Lord, no.

As I have stated before, there is enough blame to go around for this mess. But to the extent that American foreign policy is culpable--and it is--you might say our Kosovo chickens have come home to roost. Srdja Trifkovic's column, here, is essential reading, in this regard.

1 comment:

Steve Hayes said...

I'd be interested in your comments on my blog post on Caucasian Realpolitik and the article it discusses. Much of what appears in the "mainstream" media is such obvious propaganda that I don't even bother to read beyond the first couple of paragraphs, but, not having been to the Caucasus, I'm sometimes not sure that even more "nuanced" articles are not just better propaganda.