Sunday, August 10, 2008

It's like WWI, but with nukes

Tribalist independence movements confronting much larger nations they see as illegal occupiers... entangling alliances between belligerents... Russia and Serbia...

And all FOX News wants to talk about is... John Edwards.

Fiercest Fighting in Years Near Georgian Border -
The recent violence has been the worst in the region since June 2004, shortly after President Mikheil Saakashvili of Georgia came to power vowing to reassert the country’s control over South Ossetia and another rebel region, Abkhazia.

The regions are internationally unrecognized but gained de facto independence from Georgia after wars in the 1990s. The regions settled into a tenuous peace monitored by Russian peacekeepers.

Upon taking power, Mr. Saakashvili challenged Russian pre-eminence in the region by seeking NATO membership and stronger ties with the West. His government has accused Russia of training and supplying separatist forces in South Ossetia and Abkhazia under the auspices of its peacekeeping mission — accusations Moscow has denied.

Tensions escalated when Kosovo declared independence from Serbia in February and was subsequently recognized by several Western countries. Russia, an ally of Serbia, had vowed to increase its support for Abkhazia and South Ossetia — a poor, mountainous territory between Georgia and Russia’s southern border — in retaliation.

Georgia and South Ossetia blame each other for starting the current violence.

“It does give off the appearance that the violence is linked to strategic moves by one or both sides to improve their positions,” said Ana Jelenkovic, an associate at the Eurasia Group, a political risk analysis consultancy.
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