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Handling Russia

August 22, 2008

Re "How to twist Russia's arm: Let it join NATO," Opinion, Aug. 20

The results thus far of the mini-war between Russia and Georgia have been death and destruction, Russian occupation of parts of Georgia and the two breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, Western demands for an immediate Russian pullout that have fallen on deaf ears and renewed fears of a resurrected confrontational standoff between Russia and the West.

As U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, among others, continue to call for the Russians to honor their cease-fire with Georgia, they should do so within the context of a common security framework -- which should have been constructed over 15 years ago when the Cold War ended -- so that this type of dangerous anomaly in 21st century Europe does not happen again.

Dennis J.D. Sandole

Arlington, Va.

The writer is a professor of conflict resolution and international relations at George Mason University.

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Those who think we won the Cold War should rethink. The "godless commies" of Russia and China won't have to invade America; they're buying it.

Ross Billings

Corona del Mar

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