The Russian attack on Georgia was something I have had a difficult time gathering enough information about to write an article on. Yes, it represents the first flash-fire of Cold War II which was easily predicted over the last few months since Bush visited Ukraine. As I’ve mentioned a few times before, Russia has a now or never chance to assert itself. America is too deeply committed to Iraq at the moment to be effective in Eastern Europe and the European countries do not have any real military to commit to a NATO or psuedo-NATO ally such as Georgia or Ukraine.
Unfortunately, I’m still in Iraq and simply do not have the time to write a lot about this right now. Actually, I only have just learned enough about the details of the current situation to write a competent article explaining the situation, but do not have enough information just yet to take a shot at predicting exactly which way the major global shifts will go as a result of the no-shit opening of Cold War II.
It is easy to wonder what I mean about global implications as by the way the mass media covers this issue it seems that Russia and Georgia simply are arguing over the status of a breakaway region. In fact this particular event is both a symptom of and an indication of further shifts in the global balance of power and the national vectors of several nations. For example, Venezuela may be looking at relative Russian strength as the rise of a new ally and wish to be the new Cuba in a Neo Pax Russkaya; this could alter the flow of decision making in South America significantly and give the Americans renewed reasons to engage in Moroesque behaviour. Iran had previously accepted the loss of tewnty-five years of preparation and planning towards an emergence as a regional hegemon and also accepted the idea of their nuclear program being nothing more than a chip to be traded away in international negotiations at an opportune time; with Russia — a potential regional competitor for power — on the move to the west, Iran may have found a leverage point from which to nudge the Americans in ways favorable to them. Eastern Europe has just received a wake-up call that not only is NATO membership largely a notional idea lacking any practical measure of action without the USA to back it up, it has discovered that the EU is an impractical and largely defunct organization and is pulling in different direction due to natural geopolitical pressures.
The basic idea to understand about the situation is that the war in Georgia is not about Georgia, it is about asserting influence in Eastern Europe and the most opportune time. In the same way, the Orange Revolution in Ukraine and Ukrainian NATO membership was not so much about Ukrainian solidarity, democracy and security as it was about Russian encirclement. In the same way, theanti-ballistic missile shield program is not about actual missile defense, but about the US continuing to militarily dominate space (and all seven seas). In the same way, the Iranian nuclear program is not about Iranian nuclear weapons, but about Iran creating a massively influential political bargaining chip which it can trade away at the most valuable time for some concession from the West — namely, the USA.
Sorry I don’t have time to get deeper into this. In fact, I didn’t have time to write an article about the Russian attack in Georgia prior to its occurence despite the obvious run-up and preparations because I’m simply too preoccupied with my work in Iraq… which is insanely boring at the moment.
As soon as time permits I will study this situation further and write a predictive analysis instead of simply blow a few logic trains and geopolitical trends across the intertubes.