Caucasus Conflict Draws Sharp Criticism

NPR.org, Aug. 15, 2008 · As the conflict between Georgia and Russia escalates over South Ossetia, the leaders of Russia, Georgia and the U.S. face harsh criticism. Read selected editorials and commentary from around the world about the situation.

 
 

KIEV

NATO Now!

Kyiv Post

Aug. 13, 2008

Russia's adventurism in Georgia was meant to send the bluntest of signals to its neighbors: 'Don't get too cozy with the West, because we rule this region.' The fossilized communists and other Kremlin toadies all too willingly obey. But such a subservient response will only take Ukraine backwards.

HAMBURG

Russia Capitalizes On New World Disorder

By Gerhard Sporl

Der Spiegel

Aug. 14, 2008

It is a world crisis, because this wounded ex-superpower decided, some time ago, that it was going to put an end to a phase of humiliation and losses, of NATO and American expansion.

LONDON

A Tale Of U.S. Expansion

By Seumas Milne

The Guardian

Aug. 14, 2008

But underlying the conflict of the past week has also been the Bush administration's wider, explicit determination to enforce U.S. global hegemony and prevent any regional challenge, particularly from a resurgent Russia. ... And despite Bush's attempts to talk tough yesterday, the war has also exposed the limits of U.S. power in the region.

CAPE TOWN

Woeful Response

Cape Times

Aug. 13, 2008

The decision to airlift Georgian troops back from Iraq to join the conflict was a clear signal from the U.S. that it is backing Georgia in this fight. And the condemnation of Russian 'aggression' from U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney yesterday rammed the point home. What hope is there that the White House can be an honest broker of a ceasefire now?

MOSCOW

Medvedev's Toughest Presidential Test

by Georgy Bovt

The Moscow Times

Aug. 14, 2008

It is clear, however, that Medvedev now finds himself in a very difficult situation. He has no choice but to maintain a [tough] stance against Georgia because any other reaction would be poorly received by domestic public opinion — especially since official propaganda has portrayed Georgia's unjustified aggression against civilians as being supported by the West, primarily the United States.

TOKYO

Georgia's Giant Miscalculation

By Gwynne Dyer

The Japan Times

Aug. 13, 2008

There is no great moral issue here. What Georgia tried to do to South Ossetia is precisely what Russia did to Chechnya, but Georgia wasn't strong enough and South Ossetia had a bigger friend.

RIGA

Finding A Voice

The Baltic Times

Aug. 13, 2008

While Russia may have had a just cause to intervene in South Ossetia that almost certainly did not give the country a mandate to attack mainland Georgia, bombing civilian facilities and transport infrastructure. ... The spirit of courage lies in being nervous about the consequences — in being afraid of what might happen — and standing up for friends anyway. The Baltics knew that such strong support for one of their allies in the face of Russian aggression could leave a permanent stain on their relations with the country. But they did it anyway.
 
 
 

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