Iran Daily Examines Russia-Georgia Conflict

TEHRAN (FNA)- Keyhan manager Hossein Shariatmadari examined the Russian-Georgian conflict in an editorial in the Persian daily headlined One piece of news and a lesson to learn.

The following is the detailed text of his editorial.

One day, in order to protect himself, a fox became friends with a camel so that in case of danger, the giant camel would protect him. The friendship progressed so much that the two animals decided to knot their two tails together but no sooner had they done so, a lion started roaring in their vicinity and the camel who was frightened started to run away. The fox whose legs were shorter than the camel’s was dangling in mid-air and was going up and down behind the camel. A rabbit asked the fox in surprise: “What is this?” The fox replied: “This is the result of union with apathetic elders.”

In the early hours of Friday, August 8, Georgian tanks, artillery and fighter planes, self-assured of American support, attacked the city of Tskhinvali, the capital of South Ossetia, the majority of whose residents are Russian and several years ago – in 1992 – had unilaterally announced their autonomy. Reportedly, this attack resulted in approximately 1500 deaths.

However, after some hours of Georgian army’s attack against South Ossetia, Russia entered the battlefield in support of Ossetia, a move missed in the Georgian estimates. The intensity of Russian strength which was carried out from ground, air and few hours later from the sea, was so severe and the casualties were so high that the Georgian army had no choice but to retreat and at the same time the Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili officially requested for America’s interference and help.

America’s only help to its cosy ally was a request to the UN Security Council to declare a ceasefire which met with immediate opposition from Russia and the Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin who stressed, “By attacking South Ossetia, Georgia has endangered its territorial sovereignty. A ceasefire is not the solution to this war.”

Russian fighter planes that had cleared Ossetia of Georgian soldiers, took the battle to Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. By sending 10,000 fresh troops to Georgian land borders and moving the Russian fleet to the coasts of this country in the Black Sea, they surrounded Georgia from the ground, air and sea and inflicted heavy casualties on the Georgian forces and their military installations.

Last week, according to the Jerusalem Post newspaper – Georgian authorities asked Ehud Barak to use his influence to persuade Russia to accept a ceasefire and the response by the Zionist regime was that such political pressures are only within the reach of Washington and the occupiers of Qods also issued a statement supporting Georgia but not condemning Russia’s actions. This statement met with surprise and protest by Georgian authorities who expected more from the Zionist regime because of their ten year presence in Georgia, the sale of military equipment to the country and the training of Georgian military forces and …

It is worth mentioning that Davit Kezerashvili, the Georgian Defense Minister who was in charge of planning the Friday morning attack by the military forces of his country against South Ossetia, is a Zionist Jew who had educated in the occupied Palestine and for the last few years, has been holding a key post in the Georgian government along with several other Zionist Jews.

This article does not intend to review the events in the recent war between Georgia and Russia because a full account of the saga with all its details has been reported meticulously by Keyhan. What we intend to show in this article is firstly the “lessons to be learnt” and then pointing out the signs of a determining event in global equations; an event, the consequences of which must be assessed beyond the war between Russia and Georgia and the Caucasus region.

Firstly; after the collapse of the former Soviet Union and becoming separated from the Eastern camp like many other newly-independent countries of this region, Georgia was gradually drawn towards the West as a result of wide-spread and mutual conspiracy of America, Europe and the international Zionist lobby and eventually as a result of the development of a project which came to be known as the velvet revolution – or the so-called non-violent civil disobedience to overthrow a regime – it came under the complete control of America. From then on, Georgia was turned into one of America’s prime and strategic bases, alongside its traditional rival Russia and Georgia came to be known as a threat against Russia, relying on the support of the US, Europe and the Zionist regime.

The attack on Friday morning by the Georgian army against South Ossetia with the intention of taking over that state, took place with much assurance and complete confidence in the US support – as Georgian diplomats had stated – and it was expected that America would enter the field in support of Georgia, especially after Vladimir Putin announced that the “territorial sovereignty of that country had been endangered.” But the US, Europe and the Zionist lobby refrained to enter the battlefield in support of their cosy ally as they saw such an action endangering their interests.

This issue along with tens of other lesson-teaching incidents can and should give a lesson to the group of pro-westerners inside the country or those neglectful and unaware of the equations ruling the present world, who consider intimacy and union with America to be the key to the resolution of Islamic Iran’s problems and the elixir for a trouble free and unchallenged presence on the international scene, and those have taken up the language of abjectness – or neglect – and are constantly prescribing “direct negotiation”, “the establishment of ties” and friendship with America.

Secondly; although we cannot yet make correct and through judgments over the recent war and its aftermaths and consequences, the existing facts and evidence indicate that Russia is pursuing a change in its strategy in global equations or at least it can be said that it is putting this possible change of strategy to the test. Because:

1. After the collapse of the former Soviet Union, this is the first time that Russia has entered into a full blown war with another independent country and it is worth mentioning that Vladimir Putin, the present Prime Minister and Russia’s former President is directly commanding the war; so much so that some western circles believe that Putin’s new post of premiership can be defined according to Russia’s aforementioned change of strategy.

2. “Conquering connected territories” was Russia’s war strategy for expansion and development of its influence during the former Soviet era and rule of Czars.

The countries separated from the former Soviet Union had been conquered through the same strategy and merged with Russia. The recent war shows that the Russians have returned to their former strategy.

3. Taking into account the fact that Russia is fully surrounded by the countries separated from the former Soviet Union and now in the western camp, this change of strategy gets a definable meaning and justification which is worth deliberating.

4. Few existing evidences and statements by many Russian officials show that Russia predicts a dangerous end for the continuation of its policy of patience and tolerance against America’s step by step advancement in the Caucasus region; such as being encircled by NATO, losing corollaries that were formerly strategic, an undeniable decrease in regional and global power and …

5. Although Russia’s tough and comprehensive military attack against Georgia has been in response to the latter’s attack against South Ossetia, this retaliation could have been stopped after the withdrawal by the Georgian military from Ossetia and the request for ceasefire. The continuation of the attack, the fact that it has spread to Tbilisi and refusal to accept the ceasefire, indicate that Russia is using Georgia and Ossetia to react to the US and its expansion in the region; a reaction which is understandable for America, Europe and the Zionist regime and they have implicitly referred to it.

6. Bearing in mind the abovementioned points, the recent war can also be considered as Russia’s response to “America’s missile shield plan in Europe”; a plan which met with intense and repeated opposition from Russia, so much so that last month, Russia had spoken of a missile confrontation with the said plan.

7. And finally, all the existing facts and evidence strengthen the possibility that Russia is pursuing fundamental changes in its strategy and intends to put an end to its isolation in global equations and America’s so-called unipolar presence on the international scene.

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