August 20, 2008 |
He is the leader of a small country that was, until recently, not on the radar of most Americans. But it's been hard to turn on a news channel this month without encountering the angry, brooding glare of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, railing against the Russian troops pouring across his country's borders, doing his best to turn a military disaster into a media victory. There he is on CNN -- again. On the CBS morning program "The Early Show" and on the evening news talking to Katie Couric.
August 19, 2008 |
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on Monday condemned Russia for what she said was a growing reliance on military power as she headed for Europe to increase allied pressure for Moscow to withdraw its forces from Georgia. Rice, in her toughest criticism of the Kremlin to date, said Russia's incursion into Georgia was part of a pattern in which the government has increasingly turned to its military to assert its influence. She cited Russia's increasing practice of sending long-range bombers on patrol near U.S. and allied coastlines, and its dispute with the British over the alleged poisoning of a former KGB agent in London.
August 17, 2008 |
Afew months ago, I traveled to Sukhumi, a balmy, war-wrecked seaside resort that is the capital of Abkhazia. Abkhazia and South Ossetia, as anyone who has followed the news of the last week cannot fail to know, are the two breakaway regions of Georgia. In pelting rain, I crossed the Inguri River from Georgia proper into Abkhazia and noticed that the Georgians had erected a giant sculpture on their side. It was of a pistol pointing at Abkhazia, but the barrel of the gun had been tied in a knot.
August 12, 2008
Re "U.S. asks: How far will Russia go?," Aug. 11 Here we go again. The Russians are coming, blasting their way south through South Ossetia. According to Russian U.N. Ambassador Vitaly Churkin, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili "must go" because he has become "an obstacle." "Regime change," Churkin says, is an "American expression." Why then doesn't the Russian government urge the residents of South Ossetia to undertake a nonviolent, mass effort to remove Saakashvili from office and elect a responsible leader?
August 30, 2006 |
The upper part of Georgia's Kodori Gorge is a 25-mile stretch of narrow river valley, with steep slopes rising to snowcapped peaks. It boasts a few scattered villages and a population of about 4,000. In winter, snow cuts off the road to the Georgian capital. So it might seem a strange place for the headquarters of a regional government.