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August 8th, 2008
09:42 PM ET

Russia vs. Georgia, why such concern?

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/08/08/art.russian.soldiers.jpg caption="Russian peacekeepers guard their outpost at South Ossetian border in an unknown location in Georgia, Thursday."]

Jill Dougherty | Bio
U.S. Affairs Correspondent

If you’ve never heard of South Ossetia it’s understandable.

This tiny, mountainous region in the Republic of Georgia, population only 70,000, considers itself independent from Georgia and lives that way, with its own secessionist government. Most of its citizens, ethnic Ossetians, want to be reunited with Ossetians in Russia; many of them even have Russian passports and use Russian money.

The South Ossetians have held two referendums on independence but no country in the world has recognized their vote.

Now, South Ossetia is engulfed in fighting, refugees are fleeing north to Russia and the international community is scrambling to avert a wider conflict. Why such concern?

One reason is the potential for the fighting to spin out of control. South Ossetia is no stranger to violence. After the Soviet Union broke apart in 1991, South Ossetia was hit with heavy fighting between Ossetians and Georgians. In 1992 Russian, Ossetian and Georgian peacekeepers were brought in to quell tensions. The entire Caucasus mountain region in which the region is located is a patchwork quilt of ethnic groups and ethnic tensions. One example is neighboring Chechnya.

Georgia also strategically sits astride an oil pipeline route from the Caspian Sea to the West.

Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili has made Georgian unification a centerpiece of his domestic policy and his foreign policy goals, along with integration with the West and joining NATO. All of those goals worry Russia which has grave concern about NATO’s encroaching on its southern flank.

Both sides, Georgia and Russia, have extremists who are eager to provoke the other side. Some in Russia openly speak of annexing South Ossetia and carrying out “regime change” against the Georgian president. Some in Georgia have no compunction about tempting Russia to intervene in order to bring down the West’s condemnation on Moscow and curry the West’s support for Georgia.

President Saakashvili, who went down in history as the leader of the 2003 “Rose Revolution,” is urging President Bush to “stand up for freedom” and support Georgia’s cause. Russian president Dmitri Medvedev claims Moscow is justified in using force, and says he has no choice but to intervene when Russian peacekeepers and Russian citizens are under attack.

Ultimately, what happens in tiny South Ossetia has big implications for the United States. More than any other country, the U.S. has strong influence on Georgia. President Saakashvili, for example, contributed 2,000 peacekeepers to Iraq. Now, Georgia says its must bring them home as its own country mobilizes for war.

The U.S. faces a serious challenge: Can Washington help pull both sides back from the brink of war, support its ally Georgia, without increasing tensions with Russia?


Filed under: 360° Radar • Global 360° • Jill Dougherty
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Kent Fitzsimmons,Kewanee, IL

    This is the Bush Administration working with the Russian Govt in their deliberate plan to create this war before the US Presidential Election in November. Lol all you want, but we were wondering what large scale catastrophe would and could be created. The US will get involved and this will outscale all of Iraq and Afghanistan and will be the centerpiece of the decision of the American people in our election in November. We will forget all other wars and Bush debacles, and the media will focus entirely on this war...................The GOP will push McCain into the spotlight as the "War Man", and the person to elect because he says he knows how to win wars. Amazing how all the soldiers lives will again be used for political gain.....................

    August 10, 2008 at 11:23 pm |
  2. Pat

    Russia is not our business. And I hope the fools don't rush in again to make it our business! I believe the US has set an example for the rest of the world that may come back to haunt them. They will have a tuff time telling Russia to keep the Peace and give Ossetia their freedom to rule their country as they wish after the US take over of Iraq for no valid reason! Tell me again it's not the US Hunger for Power that is stiring up hornets nests around the Globe but don't expect me to believe it! 2009 can't come quick enough!

    August 10, 2008 at 9:07 pm |
  3. James Lyons

    This is getting out of hand. We have no authority over what happens over there, and it has nothing to do with our national security. The end. Let them sort it out over there. Bring our boys home from the Middle East and let's be as we were intended to when we won our independence over 200 years ago. As George Washington once rhetorically asked, "Why quit our own to stand upon foreign ground?"

    August 10, 2008 at 9:00 pm |
  4. endithinks

    CNN it is your responsibility to give a fair and balanced report to this conflict which has been milling for nearly a decade. If you continue to fear monger and only show the "innocent" Georgians you will be doing a disservice to the American people.

    Secondly we cannot afford to engage in hostilities with Russia. We are already involved in two wars...one of which was a retaliatory strike, the other an outright invasion of a "sovereign nation."

    August 10, 2008 at 8:48 pm |
  5. Irakli

    Russian is coming!!! This is wake up call for EU and US.
    If Russians change pro-western government in Georgia now what they will do next?
    It is easy to predict if you look back in history 20th century. Next move for Russians will be Ukraine and Azerbaijan. Long time perspectives east Europe (Poland, Hungary and Czech Republic).
    Today is the time to stop them. International community must use political pressure.
    We must support Georgians freedom and desire to join NATO and EU.

    August 10, 2008 at 8:37 pm |
  6. Jack from Freedom USA

    I guess regime change is good for old bushie but, not for the ruskies! Watch out what you start in world positioning!

    August 10, 2008 at 8:33 pm |
  7. Mikey

    A very critical piece of reality is being taken lightly and that is the fact that Georgia is undoubtedly under attack from Russia who has used ' initiatory force ' coercion brought on by favoring one ethnic group using threat of force onto another ethnic group within Georgian borders. Russia is also insighting fraud initiated against the Georgian Government by calling for ' change ' of that leadership . What Russia has initated is morally wrong not to mention Russia is internationally wrong. If Russia was so concerned with the Georgian Government you would think they would have follow international guildlines to come up with a proper diploymantic solution instead of using initiatory force, coercion, threat of force, and fraud to justify Russia's means.

    August 10, 2008 at 8:28 pm |
  8. Mike

    I think it's kinda funny that Georgia sent 2000 troops to help the USA with Iraq (a country that was probably 10 times their size).
    And now when they're in distress, the USA puts their tails between their legs and shies away.
    And why?
    Because The USA doesn't want a fight with Russia.
    I guess the USA won't fight a country its own size, eh?
    But, I don't blame them, I wouldn't want to start world war 3 either...

    However the "enemies" are gonna look at this as
    "America and NATO are more bark than bite"

    If no one gets involved this will give Russia a free ticket to do whatever they want in the region.

    Not to mention the west is going to lose control of that oil pipeline... and the USA is already starved for oil.

    Scary times...

    August 10, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  9. O.A. Wagner College

    This conflict is constitutionally and legally undermined by Georgia's foolish President, a person with a criminal record who has absolutely no intent on preserving peace amongst the three sides in the region. What the international community has ignored is the wicked and slick ways of this man who Ordered his troops to launch an initial ATTACK on the province of OSSETIA while the entire world was supposed to enjoy a time of peace during the start of the Olympic Games. Not only is this man a lying to the international community, the U.N. and to his most stench ally, the United States but he is also making a complete mockery of his own political base in Georgia. Shakashvili and his cabinet are waging a war of propaganda against the Russian Federation by trying to look like the victims of this conflict. But in reality their territorial integrity was respected until they began to fire upon Russian peace keepers, belonging to the Russian Federation. Now what the international community, including Mr. McCain, Mr. Obama, and Mr. Bush have to ask them selves is: how would U.S. respond if for example the Cubans decided to attack GITMO and kill U.S. officials? Better yet why don't they just remember how the United States began to bomb Serbia uncontrollably when they should have respected Serbia's territorial integrity over Kosovo. Just as the Serbians are trying to enforce themselves upon the Albanians in Kosovo, the Georgians are forcing themselves upon the Ossetians by shooting at their hospitals, throwing grenades into their bomb shelters, and sniping out women and children walking on the streets, and what the Russian Federation is doing is protecting their integrity, just as the United States protected the integrity of Kosovo ( which just recently has been given its independence). This is not a war between Georgia and Ossetia, but rather a quiet political war between Russia and the United States.
    How come nobody gave this a thorough thought. Instead of realizing both sides of the situation, this country with it's biased news agencies streams on with the information that is blind and completely one sided. Sometimes even history can help one answer important questions about the future.

    August 10, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  10. Soslan

    I am the ossetian. Was born and grown in Tskhinvali. Now I live and work in Moscow. For last three days my native city have destroyed. A lot of lost: officially it is more 2000, but I think that the figure will grow. Each hour we learn names of victims. Among them there are my friends and relatives. In a head does not keep within as such could happen.

    August 10, 2008 at 2:47 pm |
  11. Gary Chandler in Canada

    yoo hoo, lug nuts!!!, Georgia attacked South Ossetia, first! (It is NOT unpatriotic to disagree with Bush, McCain, Cheney, Rove.) I blogged in here months ago that Bush and McCain would 'manufacture' a war during this campaign. This will a Warm War with Russia, and, as usual, America is wrong on the ground.
    There were 15 dead Russian peacekeepers, over 100 wounded, and over 1000 civilian deaths, AND warnings by Putin to cease hostilities, BEFORE Russia counter attacked.
    Get a relative or friend who has a brain, if you have one, and have them explain the FACTS of South Ossetia in wikipedia.org.
    South Ossetia is recognised, even by Georgia, as an autonomous state. It is neither independent nor a Georgian.
    2/3 of the population is Ossetian and they have TWICE voted nearly 100% to become independent, but the world community would not 'recognize' this. Where is the democracy in not allowing this?
    Georgia is to South Ossetia as China is to Tibet, except their invasion last Friday to make it 'Georgian' was repelled by the Russians.
    The PEOPLE of South Ossetia, if they matter to you, do NOT want to be Georgian! They never have!
    You would cheer Tibet's freedom, yet you want to support South Ossetia's dominance by the Georgian minority!!!???
    While they want freedom and independence, if they had a choice between Georgian or Russian rule, they would choose Russian. They HOLD Russian passports, not Georgian ones!
    If you think McCain is the man to handle this situation, you are DEAD wrong! Don't side with the arms dealers on this one!

    August 10, 2008 at 1:57 pm |
  12. Julie San Diego, CA

    Hi Jill,

    Great article. If someone's got 30 seconds to read this article, here's the most important point:

    "Georgia also strategically sits astride an oil pipeline route from the Caspian Sea to the West."

    Life could imitate "art" here. For those who've got a few hours to kill, rent the Pierce Brosnan 007 Bond flick "The World is Not Enough" to get a good overview of oil pipelines and their political implications in that section of the world.

    So the question I'm going to ask is this: Are we, the American public, going to let ourselves be dragged into this conflict under the pretenses of "defending freedom" – when it just might be "oil interests" that we're defending?

    I'll reiterate Jill's statement:

    "President Saakashvili, who went down in history as the leader of the 2003 “Rose Revolution,” is urging President Bush to “stand up for freedom” and support Georgia’s cause."

    Think about it. As our boy, Andy says: "You decide."

    August 10, 2008 at 1:56 pm |
  13. duku

    If there`s anybody who`s believin` that this war is wrong and Russians are not doin` right, they areSTUPID!!!!!!

    August 10, 2008 at 1:41 pm |
  14. Vicente Cueto Torreblanca

    I am foreigner, recently moved to the Baltic States for personal reasons and have been recently in contact with the people and their histories of life under Soviet Ruling and all I can say is that its brutality as a ruling Goverment has no limits.
    Clearly the Georgia's conflict is an invasion from the Russian State that has never accepted the free will of the occupied countries by the Comunist Russia.
    Being initially and always a conflict INSIDE the Sovereign Country of Georgia, Russia has nothing to do with its troops INSIDE that Sovereign Country...that's it.
    If the International Community doesn't react now, who's gonna be next? latvia with a russian community brought in the Soviet Era, that reaches a quarter of its population? We in the World must thank God for having America now, for its the only country that can restablish the balance of power and bring Peace to the World, all the contrary to the Western European Union Countries that are extremely passive and prefer to sit and wait. Seen and believing...

    August 10, 2008 at 12:33 pm |
  15. Michael

    When the terrorists have killed about 3,000 people, most of them were American citizens the US has engaged the war with Saddam Hussein. When the Georgian forces have killed 2,000 civilians and most of them were Russians citizens, Russia has engaged the war with Saakishvili. You may tell that US was attacked on it’s own soil... Well, what would you do if Saddam’s special forces killed 2,000 Americans in, say, Germany? Just verbally condemn it? Can America be honest?

    August 10, 2008 at 12:01 pm |
  16. Mike in NYC

    This is what you get for pulling the bear's tail.

    August 10, 2008 at 11:38 am |
  17. I Put On

    The only way the US could win a war with Russia is with nukes.. Their soldier's are tired of fighting and moral is low. While Russia is always wanting to war.

    August 10, 2008 at 11:37 am |
  18. Susan Vertich

    The conflict going on between Georgia and Russia really makes me realize how lucky we are to live where we live. We are lucky because we are able to express our opinions about anything. Most countries do not have that freedom.
    But, I also believe the world really needs to be more aware of the severity of this conflict, especially the United States. Georgia is a small country with a western philosophy. They are looking for the United States to help them in this conflict with Russia. However, America needs help from Russia to resolve the issues in Iran. No matter how we look at this, this conflict is not good for America. If we do not help Georgia, our reputation around the world will continue to suffer. If we do help Georgia, we risk being at war with Russia and possibly Iran. I fear World War III is just around the corner.

    August 10, 2008 at 9:56 am |
  19. merry

    Again double standards – what is acceptable for Russia is not acceptable for Georgia. It was acceptable to have "anti-terrorist" operations in Chechnya, kill and torture lots of civilians, make them flee from their homes (btw Georgia sheltered lots of Chechen refugees), but it's unacceptable if Georgia tries to defend its territorial integrity, its citizens and all civilians who were forced to apply for Russian citizenship just a couple of years ago. It's ok if Russia defends territorial integrity of Serbia but it's a tragedy for this big country if Georgia strives to maintain its unity. Moreover, Russia did not stop on openly backing up South Ossetian separatists' but now it's actually bombing towns all over Georgia. Casualties and deaths are being reported far outside the conflict region. In Senaki (town, western Georgia) even shelters of IDPs from Abkhazia were bombed and people got killed. In Gori (eastern Geo) people are being evacuated as most of the residential areas were recently bombed.

    ..Same goes on in Gori – residential areas bombed and people being evacuated. We might have the same situation in the capital, Tbilisi tonight.

    If we tolerate this, if EU tolerates this, if NATO tolerates this – YOUR COUNTRY CAN BE NEXT!

    August 10, 2008 at 9:12 am |
  20. Disgusted Voter

    Come on, people, there's an oil pipeline in Georgia. And that's all that matters, not the people of Georgia being slaughtered.

    August 10, 2008 at 9:01 am |
  21. Alex

    All articles written here is fake.
    Georgia attacked first. They used GRAD systems agains civilians in South Ossetia. Our troops are protecting civilians and aim of our forces is NOT to capture or bomb Georgia. Only to protect civilians in South Ossetia. NATO made the same in Kosovo.

    August 10, 2008 at 6:22 am |
  22. rusty

    So we come to this. While we remain mired in an expensive, never ending, war, in two countries, which we are not even close to ending, Russia, the Bear, awakes. All this while the World watches the Olympics. Georgia doesn't stand a chance, and, at the very least, Russia will be annexing South Ossetia soon. At the very worst, they will go for more, and will end up controlling the pipeline. What can we do about it? Nothing. It is beginning to look like we called ourselves the victors of the cold war a bit too soon. Our Foreign Policy blunders seem to be coming home to roost.

    August 10, 2008 at 5:29 am |
  23. dick palmer

    I saw Bush at the Olympics chatting it up with Putin the other night. I guess he was worried about Russians attacking Georgia. . .he was wondering what possible concern they had with the folks in Atlanta. . .

    August 10, 2008 at 2:57 am |
  24. Elrond

    People, all that you are told is a not true. It not Russia attacked Georgia, but Georgia in 23:36 attacked South Ossetia. Russia is a peacemaker. Cold war made off already, it is not necessary anymore to oppress Russia, it is time to think of the world.

    August 10, 2008 at 1:34 am |
  25. Surafel Melaku

    Are you kidding me! Anderson? its a big concern if Russia invade Georgia, think about the energy/oil price most Euro will pay? Think about the US military in Georgia! Its a big concern politically, don't forget what happen with Russia/Cuba tie.

    August 9, 2008 at 9:18 pm |
  26. Brad

    The Russians may have overreached in there repsonse to the Georgia situation but for the U.S. Diplomats to call them on that is Hypocritcal at the least. Our "Preemptive strike on Iraq (no WMD's) and the ShocK & Awe of Rumsfeld had to have caught some innocents in the line of fire plus what the Blakwater guys have done, I think we need to mend our own fences before we going pointing fingers. Bush has set many terrible benchmarks that the restof the world can use as justification to do their own dirty work.

    August 9, 2008 at 8:15 pm |
  27. lela

    Peace in Georgia means "new peace' in the World.

    August 9, 2008 at 7:17 pm |
  28. Florida Resident

    It's amazing how the world can be so indolent, I wonder what would happen if this occurred somewhere else, people are dying, somebody need to do something. US should back Georgia it says it on this article "Saakashvili, for example, contributed 2,000 peacekeepers to Iraq", I'm sure they expect some kind of help from Bush, wouldn't you??

    August 9, 2008 at 6:12 pm |
  29. Ashley h

    Ok,why is this fighting going on?And when will this fighting end?Why isnt any government doing anything?

    August 9, 2008 at 5:16 pm |
  30. HillbillyBill

    Woops, Patty Bray. The John Edwards story is in another blog.
    But for this blog, it was strange all Friday night that all the tv channels were talking about–guess what? The John Edwards affair all the while that bombs were falling, Russian tanks were rumbling and Russian troops were marching iinto Georgia.
    Georgia had asked the U.S. to fly Georgian troops stationed in Iraq back to Georgia to defend their homeland.
    I have not heard how long this took, but I'm certain it did not take as long as it will to withdraw American combat troops from Irag–we do know that at least one estimate is 50 years or more.
    It was surely only a mere and freak coincidence that GWB had met with Putin on his way to the games in China and then Russia invaded Georgia–but isn't that weird?

    August 9, 2008 at 2:46 pm |
  31. mgorki

    US, along with the rest of the western world are exercising rouge double standard in this matter. Kosovo's independence was acknowledged within hours of its proclamation, and yet S. Ossetia has been fighting for own independence for years now, has own government and own military force and no one cares to support them.
    News makers keep referring Georgia as a democratic nation. What exactly makes Georgia a democracy? The fact that the current president seized the power and since has destroyed all political opposition? Or is it the military action against an independent territory?

    August 9, 2008 at 2:35 pm |
  32. Ariec

    Georgia has killed Russian peacemakers. Without declaration of war it is perfidious.
    Ossetian City цхинвали have razed to the ground .2000 peace inhabitants was lost.
    The Georgian armies finished wound and captured. All this is photographed on video.
    Inhabitants Ossetia run to Russia and ask us the help. The question is a genocide from the side of Georgia. And CNN and BBC feed you with strange rollers. You do not understand
    , But in your news show shootings bombardment Ossetian cities and speak what is it Russian armies attack the Georgian. I live in the south of Russia and that that now occurs in the world it is possible to name information war.think above that that speak you in the TV.
    And more, Russian armies have the international mandate on peace-making .also time shall be repeated we on anybody not attack.Georgia army has shot our garrison, have killed Russian 15 militarians. Only after that we have opened reciprocal fire!

    August 9, 2008 at 1:04 pm |
  33. EM Thomas

    Georgia and Russia

    I caught an artical on neurope.eu – see below:

    Georgia sees potential for new pipelines
    Interview with: Georgian Energy Minister Alexander Khetaguri
    21 July 2008 – Issue : 791

    Georgia is a developing nation that has some good insight, and much to hope for and look forward to. I find it hard to believe that Georgia purposefully insighted this conflict. I think an opportunity has conveniently presented itself to make this conflict justifiable and it is to the larger more powerful countries advantage.

    August 9, 2008 at 12:19 pm |
  34. Sasa Turski

    We have the same situation in Georgia like situation in Yugoslavia in 1991. There is one side (Russia-Serbia) and ocupated side (Georgia- Croatia, Bosnia, Kosovo). Russia said that is russians teritory beaucose they people live on that ground of world. And in the name of proporty doing the worst crimes against people of thet country.

    August 9, 2008 at 11:53 am |
  35. Joseph Sudolcan, MD

    Although I hate to see the fighting in Georgia involving Russia, it strikes me as hypocritical that President Bush is calling for the sovereignty of Geiogia to be respected while US troops are in Iraq. This is about like his distress about Iran developing a nuclear arsenal while the US sits atop a huge stockpile.

    August 9, 2008 at 10:59 am |
  36. Daniil in S.Osetia

    And Russia does not want war with the United States of America! Russia wants the release of Abkhazia and Ossetia! And Rosa did not want war with Georgia!

    August 9, 2008 at 10:00 am |
  37. Daniil in S.Osetia

    generally lie to you all! we have not opened fire on cargo! so they opened fire on us!

    August 9, 2008 at 9:58 am |
  38. Daniil in S.Osetia

    Russian not attacked Georgia, Georgians attacked Ossetia, Russian troops were there as peacekeepers! Georgians killed 12 civilians Russia! so far killed 70 Russian military! War started because Georgia wanted to destroy South Ossetia and Abkhazia, Russian embarked on their behalf, Soakoshvili promised not to fire until the end of negotiations (8 – th July 8 pm) and after half an hour, opened fire on Capital Ossetia, not waiting for negotiations! therefore, Russian troops entered the territory of South Ossetia. Sorry for the bad English)

    August 9, 2008 at 9:57 am |
  39. Sergios

    Ok, the mr. Jill Dougherty Say lie , yo u know that. Us Help to Kosovo be new country in Europe , but the Kosovo is part of Serbia you know that , why the Soth Ossetia can be new country and go away from Georgia , Kosovo , Serbia , Afghanistan , Iraq all this moments is USA make , Miloshevits died , Karatzis is terrorist , Kosovo "president" is not terrorist , him selling drugs in USA and CIA know that and help him to make the Kosovo like new country , USA wake up and not believe the CNN,BBC and others news channel , Sakashvili is murder and need to bee go to Court about killing people and start war .
    I see the CNN moderate this comment and like delete , CNN always say lies about this war .

    August 9, 2008 at 9:43 am |
  40. Timofey

    It is frightful to hear that Georgia under atack by Russia. Its not truth. South Ossetia is under atack by Georgia. South Ossetians is dieng. Georgia and US – please STOP! I have some friends in South Ossetia and i know the situation!

    August 9, 2008 at 5:07 am |
  41. Eric

    Out of everything that man has created and been able to learn from war and conflict or rather imposing harm to one anothe seems to be very difficult for some reason this is really a backward direction with are own evolution. We still should try for more diplomatic ways to teach one another .

    August 9, 2008 at 2:27 am |
  42. shouldknowsomething about Russian's

    If Bush really stood for freedom he would stand of for Georgia, we Americans have our heads in the sand. WAKE UP people, we are going through a cultural war here at home (Obama the great socialist VS. McCain the feeble patriot) and the Russians are poised to pounce. They are flirting with it. Just to see what the world will do. You need to wake up and blow the dust off your world history books and take a refresher..... or did you miss that day in school. Oh wait.... did American schools even really teach about communist Russia...

    August 9, 2008 at 1:37 am |
  43. Alex

    Yesterday Georgia (not Georgia where CNN is located, but the Georgia which is near Azerbaidjan and Turkey) started war. More than 1500 of people were killed. Russians kept peace in that region for 10 years. Neither Georgia shoot Ossetia nor Ossetia shoot Georgia. Now it's war and it is war in Europe.
    It used to be time when war in Europe was good for US economy.
    But now it is different. Economies are so interconnected that Ford plant in St. Petersburg will provide retirement for US baby boomers.
    Now day war abroad is bad. (Just look what war did to US economy.)
    And after all small nations like Ossetia and Abkhazia also have right to feed their children in peace, not only big countries like Georgia.

    Let Europe, Russia and Obama save Georgia from Saakashvilli.
    It's time for people of peace.

    August 9, 2008 at 12:46 am |
  44. Paris

    The real headline should be the response from John McCain vs. Obama.

    On the first foreign policy reaction on real time we saw their judgment put to test. Where both agreed that Russia has violated a sovereign country, John McCain was clear, and very focus on his reply. John McCain choose to stand up and clearly state that “Russia should Unconditionally pull his troops back”.
    On the other hand Obama said we should resolve this internationally and as soon as possible.

    This reflects the lack of experience , resolve and judgment by Obama.

    I am voting for a leader and not an intern.

    John McCain you have my vote

    August 8, 2008 at 11:57 pm |
  45. Victor Khoo in Singapore

    When the cameras zoomed in on President Bush in Beijing, as the US contingent marched by, you could see he was worried.

    He was probably quietly singing that old Ray Charles favorite hit, "Georgia On My Mind".

    And seated not far away, Russian PM Putin, looking like an innocent angel, and with a face that seems to say to President Bush, "What? I know nothing nor see nothing, as I am here in China".

    August 8, 2008 at 11:12 pm |
  46. Will in California

    The Russians are coming, the Russians are coming! Russia is attacking Georgia?! President Bush, press the "red button" NOOOOOWWWWWWW!!!! Oh, wait a minute, it's not the US state of Georgia, it's the other one. My bad. Wheew, close one, huh?

    August 8, 2008 at 10:43 pm |
  47. Patty Bray

    As a veteran ex wife of a world class womanizer, I can safely say that John Edwards is still not telling the truth. He is the father of that baby. He is paying her support through the Dallas lawyer, somehow. Edwards does not want his wife to know that he lied to her about the affair, still going on with the woman. Now, he has lied to Elizabeth so he keeps lying. He needs to come clean with Elizabeth and the world.
    He is hurting the Democratic Party, regardless of what is said.
    People are not stupid even if John Edwards, thinks we are.
    Obama '08

    August 8, 2008 at 10:25 pm |
  48. Victor in Saanich, B.C. Canada

    It is obvious that the Russians will not accept an internal struggle being held in an independent republic on their border. Meanwhile the world takes little notice !! It speaks volumes of complicity of the superpowers!! The Olympics continue in a spatial distortion of political realities and the world snores!!

    August 8, 2008 at 10:17 pm |
  49. Stefan, North Carolina

    Let's not forget that President Bush was advocating Georgia's admittance to NATO at the NATO summit in Romania earlier this year. If Georgia was a member of NATO right now, we'd be compelled to go to war with Russia.

    August 8, 2008 at 10:12 pm |
  50. Annie Kate

    If Bush stands up for freedom I hope he doesn't do it with yet another war. We aren't the police of the world. Lets fix our problems first before interfering with other nations.

    Annie Kate
    Birmingham AL

    August 8, 2008 at 10:11 pm |
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