Georgia/Russia news: 8 SEP 2008
NOTE: This is an informational compilation. GMF does not endorse, either explicitly or implicitly, the content contained herein.
Reuters, Tabassum Zakaria, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "Russia aims to extend its control over energy deliveries to the West and it is important that European countries push forward on efforts to diversify routes for oil and gas supplies, a senior U.S. official said on Monday €¦ Europe and the United States are concerned about transit routes for oil and gas through eastern European countries which are seen as alternatives to Russian supplies."
New York Times (U.S.), Ellen Barry and Steven Erlanger, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "A senior European Union delegation, led by the French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, arrived in Moscow on Monday and began talks with the Russian president, Dmitri A. Medvedev, about the Georgia crisis. The delegation's goal is to get Russia to pull its troops out of Georgia and finally comply with the six-point cease-fire agreement the two men negotiated last month."
The Moscow Times (RUS), Nabi Abdullaev and Anatoly Medetsky , 8 Sep 2008
Summary: French President Nicolas Sarkozy is visiting Moscow on Monday to urge President Dmitry Medvedev to pull Russian troops out of Georgian territory surrounding South Ossetia and Abkhazia, in accordance with a cease-fire agreement signed last month.
Los Angeles Times (U.S.), Chris Kraul, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "The Venezuelan government announced Sunday that four Russian naval vessels will participate in joint exercises in the Caribbean this year, a move that could heighten already strained relations between Washington and Moscow."
Washington Post (U.S.), Michael Abramowitz, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "The White House plans to formally pull from congressional consideration an agreement with Russia for civilian nuclear cooperation, perhaps as soon as today, Bush administration sources said over the weekend. The move would be the latest effort by the administration to convey its displeasure with Russia over its military actions in Georgia in the past month €¦ Withdrawing the agreement from Congress avoids a rejection of the pact, allowing the White House to save the deal for the next administration, should relations with Russia improve, some experts said."
The Moscow Times (RUS), 8 Sep 2008
Summary: Now is not the right time for the United States to move forward on a once-celebrated deal for civilian nuclear cooperation with Russia, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Saturday.
Kommersant (RUS), Vladimir Solovyev, 5 Sep 2008
Summary: Russian diplomacy acieved an important triumph in foreign relations yesterday. At the Moscow meeting of the foreign ministers of the Collective Security Treaty Organization a joint statement was adopted that laid all the blame for the conflict in South Ossetia on Georgia. At the same time, the members of the organization gave support to a package of Russian proposals touching on global security, including Russian President Dmitry Medvedev's idea of developing a European treaty. Moscow will try to build upon that success at the CSTO summit today.
New York Times (U.S.), James Traub, 6 Sep 2008
Summary: "Georgia's fate, however, rests not with President Bush, but with his successor. John McCain, a longtime friend of Georgia and President Saakashvili, has threatened "severe, long-term consequences" for United States-Russia relations, and has proposed offering security guarantees to Ukraine and Georgia, including NATO membership. Barack Obama, whose natural inclinations are less punitive, has also declared that we "must review all aspects of relations with Russia," though he and several leading Democratic policy figures have been more cautious on the question of NATO. Of course, American policy will not be shaped only by our view of Russia. Our European allies, especially Germany and France, are more dependent on Russian energy and trade than we are, and far more directly threatened by Russian aggression."
The Russian Profile (RUS), Stephen Blank, Ethan Burger, Eugene Ivanov, James Jatras, Andrei Liakhov, Edward Lozansky, Darren Spinck, Ira Straus, 5 Sep 2008
Summary: The Russians may have won the military battle, but the Georgians won the war itself on the international media front. In the wake of the armed conflict over South Ossetia, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili effectively managed to get his message across to the world that Georgia was a victim of Russian aggression. Russia's leaders then provided their own riposte; however, this proved too little too late. Why has Russia been so inept in presenting its case before Western audiences?
Financial Times (UK),Tomas Valasek, 7 Sep 2008
Summary: "In a spectacular case of bad timing, Ukraine's government all but collapsed last week. President Viktor Yushchenko withdrew most of his deputies from the ruling coalition with Yulia Tymoshenko, the prime minister. Unless the two reconcile or the prime minister finds new coalition partners soon, Ukraine may have to hold new elections €“ the third in two years."
Washington Post (U.S.), Jackson Diehl, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "The crisis in Georgia had settled by late last week into a test of wills over the survival of Mikheil Saakashvili's pro-Western government €¦ The irony is that, beneath that overweening campaign to contain Russian belligerence, American officials are still seething at Saakashvili."
International Herald Tribune, John Vinocur, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "But the Bush administration, beyond the verbiage, has wobbled between passivity and retreat. In place of an American policy - there is none - the job of extracting the Russians from Georgia, and then seemingly deciding on how to penalize them for the invasion, has been turned over to the Europeans. It's an extraordinary moment of American abdication. Responsibility for it belongs to a president who clung to his belief in a benign Russia and a mysterious, misguided notion of Putin's soulfulness in the face of three years of intensifying nationalism, aggressivity of all sorts, strangled attempts at democracy and threats to American allies."
The Moscow Times (RUS), Richard Hainsworth, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: When Russian troops moved into Georgia, foreign investors moved out and the Russian market plummeted. When U.S. troops moved into Iraq, foreign investors hesitated but the U.S. market barely blipped. Is this a double standard?
POLICY INSTITUTE ANALYSIS
American Enterprise Institute (U.S.), Gary J. Schmitt, 8 Sep 2008
Summary: "In order to deter future acts of Russian aggression, the United States and its transatlantic allies must develop a coordinated diplomatic and economic plan to punish Russia for its recent incursions in Georgia. As Paris and Berlin have proved hesitant to do so, however, Eastern European states must continue to advocate in NATO and the European Union for a tougher response."
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