Wednesday, August 13, 2008

You May Be Georgian Today, But I'm Not

by Kevin Gosztola

John McCain stepped up his rhetoric on the Russia-Georgia conflict today condemning Russia’s “aggression” and declaring today that “we are all Georgians now.”

There is some truth to that for some Americans who still support military adventures that kill innocent civilians and wreak havoc/destruction upon cities or villages. But, the way you mean it, Mr. McCain, there is absolutely no truth.

Barack Obama was no better. He used his opportunity to remark on the conflict poorly stating, “"It is past time for the Russian government to immediately sign and implement a ceasefire…Russia must halt its violation of Georgian airspace and withdraw its ground forces from Georgia, with international monitors to verify that these obligations are met.”

Obama, like McCain, had an opportunity to give a quick history lesson to the people of the world and inform them that the U.S. had been working with Georgia for some time and believed Georgia had every right to keep two de facto independent states, South Ossetia and Abkhazia, from remaining independent of Georgia. That is why the U.S. supported Mikheil Saakhashvili’s, a U.S.-educated lawyer, rise to power.

But, why shine a light on what the U.S. Empire is really up to? It might cost you an opportunity to lead it. Instead, the puppet can tell the world via the Wall Street Journal “the truth”:

Why this war? This is the question my people are asking. This war is not of Georgia's making, nor is it Georgia's choice.

The Kremlin designed this war. Earlier this year, Russia tried to provoke Georgia by effectively annexing another of our separatist territories, Abkhazia. When we responded with restraint, Moscow brought the fight to South Ossetia.

Georgia didn’t choose this war. The leader of the U.S. protectorate would like us to believe that the Kremlin intended to provoke Georgia to inflict a humanitarian disaster upon two provinces that wish to be independent from Georgia so that Russian forces could hit back and help produce photos, video, and media coverage that would damage Russia’s ability to act as a world power.

Ostensibly, this war is about an unresolved separatist conflict. Yet in reality, it is a war about the independence and the future of Georgia. And above all, it is a war over the kind of Europe our children will live in. Let us be frank: This conflict is about the future of freedom in Europe.

No country of the former Soviet Union has made more progress toward consolidating democracy, eradicating corruption and building an independent foreign policy than Georgia. This is precisely what Russia seeks to crush.

And we can’t have Russia crushing a country’s desire for independence, liberty, or freedom. That is what America is about. Every country is entitled to independence, liberty, and freedom. Wait---excuse me---every U.S. backed country is entitled to independence, liberty and freedom. (*However, even that entitlement still has limitations.)

What is at stake in this war?

Most obviously, the future of my country is at stake. The people of Georgia have spoken with a loud and clear voice: They see their future in Europe. Georgia is an ancient European nation, tied to Europe by culture, civilization and values. In January, three in four Georgians voted in a referendum to support membership in NATO. These aims are not negotiable; now, we are paying the price for our democratic ambitions.

Second, Russia's future is at stake. Can a Russia that wages aggressive war on its neighbors be a partner for Europe? It is clear that Russia's current leadership is bent on restoring a neocolonial form of control over the entire space once governed by Moscow.

If Georgia falls, this will also mean the fall of the West in the entire former Soviet Union and beyond. Leaders in neighboring states -- whether in Ukraine, in other Caucasian states or in Central Asia -- will have to consider whether the price of freedom and independence is indeed too high.

See, to the leader of this mini-America, nobody should have to pay for “democratic ambitions” and that especially means nobody should have to pay for “democratic ambitions” with blood.

Even worse, Saakashvili believes that other states should join in and fight Russia in this proxy war because losing could mean the fall of the West.

Saakhashvili is making a supreme mistake and apparently has not been through War for Empire 101. Either he wants to paint a target on himself for Russia to fire at or he sincerely believes the U.S. is willing to do a lot more than they have indicated publicly.

To Bush, McCain, Obama, and the puppet, we do not all see this as an act of Russian aggression against a Western-backed country that wishes to be a democracy and free from pockets of communism left over the Cold War that may still be working evil from Moscow.

We do not think Russia bears no responsibility for the events that have transpired, but many of us do believe that Georgia initiated the events and so whatever Russia did in response should not be characterized as aggression but rather, maybe an act of defense. Perhaps even an attempt to stop attacks on two provinces whose civilians were being targeted intentionally.

If we think we are anything, we should think we are Burmese. The Burmese suffer under terrible repression from military junta supported by China that prohibits protest and arrests protesters arbitrarily sentencing them to life in prison.

If we think we are anything, we should think we are Haitians. Over 85% of Haitians live on less than one dollar a day and most of this can be blamed on political gridlock that the U.S. has helped foster since it supported a coup against Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide.

If we think we are anything, we are Congolese. For since the days of King Leopold II, the Congolese have suffered from countries and corporations invading their country to pillage and plunder Congo’s bountiful resources such as rubber, gold, and most recently, coltan.

If we think we are anything, we should think we are people from countries like Iraq and Afghanistan who have suffered from wars of aggression led by the U.S.

If we think we are anything, we should think we are Palestinians who suffer oppression from Israel, which continues artillery attacks, air strikes, demolition of homes, shooting and killing of innocent civilians, and maintains a fence/well inside the Occupied Territories that violates international law with the support of Western powers.

If this is about freedom, liberty, and democracy, than we are South Ossetian or Abkhazian because we believe recognized independent entities should be able to function as such when recognized as such.

And Russia. Well, Russia is just Big Brother coming to the rescue. For now.

But, until the U.S. vacates the region and stops giving credence to proxy wars publicly or covertly, there’s no way for us to really know what Russia should be allowed to do and not do.

You see, Mr. McCain, Mr. Obama, Bush, and the puppet---The U.S. has lost all credibility when it comes to foreign policy. It still wishes to continue the “war on terror.” And its leaders want to now fight “the long war.”

Until we incorporate some sanity into our policies, it’s in the world’s best interest to nod their head and tacitly ignore and refuse to support everything we do.


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