Georgia/Russia news: 4 SEP 2008
NOTE: This is an informational compilation. GMF does not endorse, either explicitly or implicitly, the content contained herein.
New York Times (U.S.), Steven Lee Myers and Alan Cowell, 4 Sep 2008
Summary: "One day after the United States proposed $1 billion in humanitarian and economic assistance to help rebuild Georgia after its war with Russia, Vice President Dick Cheney flew here to reaffirm Washington's support for this country's eventual NATO membership and to issue a powerful condemnation of Moscow €¦His words of support for Mr. Saakashvili placed him on a direct collision course with Russia's leaders who have labeled the Georgian president a "political corpse" and who have made clear that they see Georgia's membership of NATO as intolerable."
Washington Post (U.S.), Tara Bahrampour, Karen DeYoung and Howard Schneider, 4 Sep 2008
Summary: "Vice President Dick Cheney arrived here on Thursday with harsh words for Russia and a message of support for the Georgian government, saying that the military conflict between the two countries had"cast grave doubt on Russia's intentions and on its reliability as an international partner.".. Appearing with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, Cheney called the Russian actions"an illegitimate, unilateral attempt to change your country's borders by force," and reiterated U.S. support for Georgia's"territorial integrity" and its eventual membership in NATO."
Ria Novosti (RUS), 4 Sep 2008
Summary: Russia's NATO envoy has said that Moscow could suspend cooperation with the military alliance on Afghanistan over the recent Georgia crisis.
Reuters, Oleg Shchedrov, 4 Sep 2008
Summary: "Russia's conflict with Georgia has helped President Dmitry Medvedev emerge from the shadow of his mentor Vladimir Putin by letting the soft-spoken lawyer assume the mantle of wartime leader €¦The war, in which Russia crushed an attempt by Georgia's military to retake the breakaway South Ossetia region and sent its troops deep into Georgia, has reshaped the domestic political landscape. Throughout the crisis, Medvedev appeared as a confident leader who made the key decisions, from ordering the invasion to signing a ceasefire deal."
International Herald Tribune (U.S.), Clifford J. Levy, 4 Sep 2008
Summary: "The Western-leaning governing coalition in Ukraine, which took power during the Orange Revolution in 2004 but has endured repeated tumult ever since, appeared once again near collapse on Wednesday €¦Yushchenko, whose party had been allied with Tymoshenko's in Parliament, said his party would withdraw from the governing coalition, adding that a new one had to be formed. He seemed to be daring Tymoshenko to formally join with the pro-Moscow Party of Regions, a move that might upset her supporters."
Ria Novosti (RUS), 4 Sep 2008
Summary: Nicaragua is taking final steps to officially recognize South Ossetia and Abkhazia, in line with the president's decision, a deputy foreign minister said.
Financial Times (UK), 3 Sep 2008
Summary: "The collateral damage from Russia's dispute with Georgia over the breakaway republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia has spread to encompass its trading relations with the rest of the world. In the past week Moscow has announced it will suspend agreements to import pork and chicken, banned 19 US companies from exporting poultry to Russia and blocked Turkish trucks at customs posts."
The Moscow Times (RUS), Courtney Weaver, 4 Sep 2008
Summary: The ruble fell by as much as nearly 2 percent against the dollar on Wednesday. Russia's RTS Index dropped 4.3 percent, pummeled by low oil prices, a tightening market and geopolitical concerns over Russia's rift with the West over Georgia.
Washington Post (U.S.), David Ignatius, 4 Sep 2008
Summary: "In the days after the Russian invasion of Georgia, the world had a chance to examine the different foreign policy styles of John McCain and Barack Obama €¦Listening to McCain, you sensed the beginning of a new Cold War; hearing Obama, you felt a desire to prevent that Cold War from taking root."
Säddeutsche Zeitung (Germany), J. Aumäller, 3 Sep 2008
Summary: Aumäller argues that "the conflict in South Ossetia and the debate about the Crimea is not only about Russia's urge to power €“ it also has to do with the Russian soul, which feels discriminated by history."
Kommersant (RUS), Mikhail Zygar, Vladimir Solovyov, Dmitry Butrin, 3 Sep 2008
Summary: "Last week Russian President Dmitry Medvedev stated that he is not afraid of cold war. The West started discussing possible sanctions against Russia. Trying to forecast what Russia and the world can expect in the near future, Vlast weekly made up a cold war guide-book."
Financial Times (UK), Stefan Wagstyl, Roman Olearchyk and Jan Cienski, 3 Sep 2008
Summary: "The big question is whether instability spreads from Georgia or whether a new balance of forces emerges, with Russia playing a bigger role. The answer depends on the Kremlin's ambitions, its readiness to resort to force and its willingness to exploit its role as an energy superpower. The responses of its neighbours will also matter, as will the reaction from the west, including the US, the European Union and Nato. Potential flashpoints include Ukraine, Moldova, the Baltic states and the energy-rich Caspian region."
Die Welt (Germany), Daniel Friedrich Sturm, 2 Sep 2008
Summary: Sturm reports on a speech former chancellor Gerhard Schröder gave in Berlin on September 1. In his speech Schröder attacked the West for being too critical towards Russia.
Russian Profile (RUS), Georgy Bovt, 3 Sep 2008
Summary: Diplomatic perturbations spurred by the recent crisis in South Ossetia have brought Russia to the verge of global isolation, nearly canceling all of Russia's past efforts to build understanding and rapport with the West. But if Russia's international bridges were immediately shuttered by an acute crisis, how sturdy were they to begin with?
Russian Profile (RUS), Sergei Balashov, 2 Sep 2008
Summary: This tumultuous summer had it all - diplomatic tensions, a war, and yet another scandal between the government and a major corporation. All of this took a heavy toll on foreign investment in the country, as key economic indicators plummeted, making room for what seems like a full-scale financial demise of an otherwise steadily growing economy. But experts are confident that Russia can easily rebound, downplaying the investment cuts as a factor that won't impact long-term growth, but will rather set the scene for another massive economic surge.
POLICY INSTITUTE ANALYSIS
Council on Foreign Relations (U.S.), Interview with Robert E. Hunter, 3 Sep 2008
Summary: "Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili miscalculated badly in sending his troops into South Ossetia in mid-August. This move precipitated a conflict with Russia and the Russian recognition of the breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent. In the long run, however, Hunter says that"Russia is the loser here." At a time when the Russians need Western investment and expertise,"Putin has gone much too far and does not understand exactly what he is doing €¦"
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