Here’s Hoping There’s Not a Georgia Lobby in Washington….

on 14 Comments

I just saw George Bush on the Olympics deploring the violence in Georgia and Russia, saying that he told Putin things must return to the "status quo ante" of August 6. Though he had trouble with "status quo ante."

The Israelis are said to be on the Georgians' side… Debkafile, a site with Israeli intelligence sources, reports that Israeli advisers are aiding the Georgians to hold on to the breakaway provinces. 1000 advisers, says this site. The JPost headlines its report on Israelis' views of the battle: South Ossetia is Georgia's "Golan Heights:–and the Russians/Syrians want to take it away from us…

Haaretz reports the internationalist connection: a "Jewish Georgian minister" –of "reintegration." And just in case you had any doubt, there's also a neocon connection: McCain foreign policy advisor Randy Scheunemann (a former board member of the Project for the New American Century) worked for the Georgian government. In the Note, Steve Clemons says that reckless U.S. internationalists have pushed the war, much as they've pushed adventures in the Middle East.

The Times also makes the Israel/Palestine analogy in this piece by Jim Traub, who had the foresight to visit Georgia a few weeks ago, and go to the breakaway region of Abkhazia–another South Ossetia:

Talking to the Georgians about Abkhazia, and the Abkhaz about Georgia, was like shuttling between the Israelis and the Palestinians.
The Georgians said that they were “always there,” that Abkhazia was a
Georgian kingdom, and that only by expelling the ethnic Georgians at
the end of the war did the Abkhaz make themselves a majority in the
province. The Abkhaz said that they are the descendants of a
“1,000-year-old kingdom,” that they were the victims of a massive
campaign of Russian deportation in the 1860s, and then that Stalin
forced them into the Georgian yoke. The Abkhaz talk about the Georgians
pretty much the same way that the Georgians talk about the Russians… For
the Abkhaz, as for the Ossetians, Georgia is the neighborhood bully.

George Bush showed us the major difference between the two territorial disputes: Despite all the fervor, the U.S. seems to be playing the role of an off-shore balancer on this one. We're not joined at the hip to one side. We may be tilting; but we're not about to alienate the Russians forever. Would that we had such respect for the Arabs.

14 Responses

  1. Richard Witty
    August 11, 2008, 8:38 am

    Are you informed first, opining second?

    Why do you adopt the "Israel supports, we therefore reject" kneejerk?

    I don't know whats really going on there, do you?

    Do you not consider Russia imperial? Chechnya, Afghanistan, Serbia?

    Picking which imperial side to stand with, seems a bit odd politics to me.

  2. Richard Witty
    August 11, 2008, 8:39 am

    You do know that Georgia is a sovereign state, internationally recognized, now OCCUPIED.

  3. charles Keating
    August 11, 2008, 8:57 am

    War in Georgia: The Israeli connection:
    "For past seven years, Israeli companies have been helping Gerogian army to preparer for war against Russia through arms deals, training of infantry units and security advice." link to

  4. roGER
    August 11, 2008, 10:15 am

    "Debkafile, a site with Israeli intelligence sources"

    NO NO NO.

    It's written by sad wannabes and is almost always 100% wrong.

  5. charles Keating
    August 11, 2008, 10:55 am

    Israel is not considered to be one of the main arms suppliers of Georgia. The scope of the defense deals between the two countries stands at $200 million. The two largest suppliers to Georgia are the United States and France. However, the security ties between the two countries have received a great deal of media attention, in part because of the capture, on film, of a Russian jet downing an Israeli-made drone in Georgian service, and the role that senior retired Israeli officers have played as advisers to the Georgian security forces.
    link to

    'Oil, Israel and Iran' Among Factors that Led to Georgia War,
    by Gl Ronen: link to

  6. Jaffr
    August 11, 2008, 11:26 am

    Of course there IS a Georgia lobby — and it is the the Israel Lobby!

    Don't underestimate the involvement of Israel. Their press estimates $300-500 million in arms sales AND the involvement of Israeli military advisors in the Georgian army. The defense minister of Georgia is an Israeli!
    link to

    The neocons are all over the media (NYTimes, WPost and NPR) rattling the sabers for confrontation with Russia — which is regarded as a hindrance to their plans in the Middle East and for war with Iran. These are the same folks who had no problem with the armed dismemberment of Yugoslavia, a sovereign state of 70 years in the heart of Europe. By contrast, Georgia's borders were inherited from the former USSR and were never accepted by the Abkhazian or South Ossetian regional populations.

    And McCain's chief foreign policy adviser, Randay Scheunemann, is a paid lobyist for Georgia; Sakashvili (no democrat!) has a clearly ghost-written column in today's Wall Street Journal.

    It doesn't take a genius to put the pieces together.

  7. MRW.
    August 11, 2008, 12:07 pm

    Read this:
    link to

  8. Andrey Khikhlovskiy
    August 11, 2008, 2:40 pm

    I agree with Charles Keating – there should be no illusions on who is Saakashvili. Another puppet, paid and controlled by intelligence services.
    To Richard Witty: "empire"? OK, we are empire and we are responsible for our citizens (we should, shouldn't we?) 98% of Ossetians accepted Russian citizenship, from them 2 thousand were killed in Tskhinvali and the town is completely destroyed! How the empire should react, I beg you?

  9. Abe
    August 11, 2008, 3:27 pm

    Israel sold arms to Georgia in the regular course of international commerce, but reduced both the number and sophistication of the arms sold months ago, when an increase in Georgian demand set off alarm bells in the Israeli government. Just today, Israel has decided to freeze the sale of arms to Georgia, but will provide medical and humanitarian aid, if it is requested. Moreover, sales by Israel were overwhelmed by both German and American sales.

    Of course, there are some people who have the audacity to blame Israel for this, but the only apt comparison here is in the reaction of the UN. 2000 civilians are already dead in Tskhinvalli – where is the international outcry? How has the UN, which wastes no time in condemning Israel every time one of its soldiers so much as waves an arm, not spoken up? The answer is simple: the Jews are not involved, so nobody cares who kills whom.

  10. morris
    August 11, 2008, 5:37 pm

    Georgia is the biggest foreign policy blunder ever for Israel, apart from Lebanon 2006.
    And it is the same people in charge as in 2006!

  11. Richard Witty
    August 12, 2008, 5:40 am

    From my admittedly less than fully informed state re: Georgia, the nature of the sovereignty of the South Ossetion region was ambiguous. It is an autonomous region, implying the consent of the governed for being more autonomous than semi.

    If there were two thousand rebels in the region, and Russia determined to change the status from semi-autonomous to subject to Russia, on the basis that the 2000 wanted to be autonomous, that that resembles an imperial (czarist) response more than a democratic one.

    Today, Russia occupies half of Georgia, and is similarly ambiguous about whether it respects full Georgian autonomy, or more accurately wants Georgia to become a semi-autonomous region.

    It is 19th and early 20th century politics, spheres of imperial interests, playing out in early 21st century.

  12. morris
    August 12, 2008, 9:50 am

    Witty profits handsomely from organised judaisms activeties.

  13. charles Keating
    August 12, 2008, 3:21 pm

    Witty has no probem, because lower middle class goys protect him–its a (lower middle classe American) adhension conttact in full operation. He and his kind can do and say what they want–American goy will pay for it, no problem.

  14. charles Keating
    August 12, 2008, 3:24 pm

    excuse the typos–you get my drift–no excuse, I am just really annoyed. My family has produced so many miitary and economic victims for the likes of Witty.

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