Russian foreign minister and his Georgian counterpart somehow reached an agreement stipulating the withdrawal of Russian military installations from Georgia. The pullout is to be completed by 2008. The agreement was signed despite last week's remarks on the issue by Russian president Putin who commented on the demands of the Georgian side by saying that he saw “nothing special that would require an urgent removal of the Russian troops” from the Russian military bases in Batumi and Akhalkalaki. Russian president expected that issues relating to the pullout of Russian troops from Georgia should be settled on a basis of partnership in line with neutral diplomatic relations between the former allies of the Soviet bloc. But the Georgian authorities apparently can not do anything these days without getting instructions from their new overseas sponsor. The sponsor urges them to take more radical steps.
The U.S. aims to build up tension in the Caucasus. Georgia is becoming America's most important tool for achieving the objective. Washington does not care about consequences that Georgia will have to take sooner or later. The future of its vassal states normally does not concern the Americans for they are simply going to dispatch yet another republic of the former USSR into a post-Soviet fire that is designed to clear away territory for installing the New World Order in Eurasia. The Russian military bases have been the only force that prevented Georgia from falling apart and sliding into chaos.
Today's America is an indisputable leader in mapping out the post-Soviet territory. No state leader can feel safe without securing support of the U.S. government.
Mr. Saakashvili has such support. Besides, we should not overestimate the problems faced by him at the moments. He has to deal with a regular set of problems pertinent to the post-Soviet states including a lack of social policy, large-scale corruption, and population's inactivity. Georgia's situation is not the worst one, people out there still believe they are capable of staging a national comeback. To a certain extent, the morale is currently high and it can make up for daily setbacks and difficulties. The American support is a significant factor too. Mr. Saakashvili is winning. There are no reasons whatsoever to poke fun at him. Besides, Mr. Saakashvili has colossal support from George W. Bush himself. Raising living standards all over Georgia would be a real cakewalk for Mr. Bush because the country is small and its state budget would be similar to that of a small-sized U.S. company.
In view of the above, last month's state visit of Mr. Bush to Georgia seems quite carefully planned and logical. President Bush did not simply went to Georgia to pledge his support to Mr. Saakashvili. Prior to his taking part in the May 9th commemorations in Moscow, President Bush paid a visit to Latvia and met with Latvian President Vike-Freiberga who is notorious for her anti-Russian sentiments. After visiting Moscow, U.S. president went to Georgia and met with President Saakashvili who is an outspoken critic of Russia too. Mr. Bush intended to humiliate Russia by choosing such a “sandwich route” for his journey. Mr. Bush's plan apparently worked. Though the Russian public in general are more than happy about the relations between Mr. Bush and Mr. Putin, the West has a totally different point of view.
Mr. Bush's visits to Riga and Tbilisi were interpreted as a public humiliation of Russia. Therefore, it seems quite natural that now they are consistently kicking out our military personnel from Georgia. It is only history repeating itself. We saw it before in Afghanistan, East Germany, and Ukraine.
Georgia is also a bridgehead for mounting offensive against the Russian Caucasus. We are talking about ways of exporting “rose revolutions” to the Northern Caucasus. This is the issue we should focus on now. The process is already under way e.g. the Pankisi Gorge in Chechnya. Mr. Saakashvili will be soon stirring up trouble in the Northern Ossetia when he starts driving a hard bargain in the Southern Ossetia.
Despite being a figure whose real political standing is next to nothing, Mr. Saakashvili managed to come under the auspices of the extremely powerful global force. As a result, we are dealing with that force every time we have to deal with Mr. Saakashvili. This is the rule of the gangsters. We will have to obey the rule and show him “some respect” no matter how petty he can be.
There is still a slim chance for strengthening our positions in the Northern Caucuses before the coming storm. But it is highly unlikely that our authorities will take any real steps to change the situation.
On the photo: Mikhail Saakashvili (on the left), George Bush (on the right)