Ravings From The Bog

US Meddles In Georgia Again

Following the recent conflict in South Ossetia, stoked by US/NATO’s support and encouragement for Georgia’s  incursion into the area and the subsequent Russian reaction, the US has now decided to meddle further and get further involved in this volatile situation by giving Georgia US$1bn. Simultaneously, they’re upping the ante with some gunboat diplomacy flooding the Black Sea with US Navy ships and even a US Coastguard vessel. No matter what twist Fox News puts on it, this is meddling in a foreign sovereign state’s backyard and is asking for trouble. Again, we see that George Bush and Dick Cheney will take any action available to them to increase the price of oil so that their cronies in the oil companies increase their fat profits even further. Could this US$1bn be put to better use to help the 24,000,000 citizens on food stamps this year???

The US has announced $1bn (£564m) of aid to Georgia for reconstruction after the conflict with Russia.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said the aid would be used to rebuild houses and infrastructure – but not for military purposes.

Georgia has requested $2bn in funding from the international community.

Fighting between Russia and Georgia began on 7 August after the Georgian military tried to retake the breakaway region of South Ossetia by force.

Russian forces launched a counter-attack and the conflict ended with the ejection of Georgian troops from both South Ossetia and another breakaway region, Abkhazia.

Russia has since recognised the independence of both regions, though no other country has.

“We are responding to what we consider to be urgent needs,” said Ms Rice, as she announced the aid package.

“With our full support and the support of the entire free world, a democratic Georgia will survive, will rebuild and will thrive,” she said.

 On Wednesday, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) also announced that Georgia was to receive a $750m (£422m) loan.

The IMF agreed in principle to offer the help amid concerns that Georgia’s growth would be seriously hampered by the recent war.

The US announcement came on the day Vice-President Dick Cheney began a visit in the region – but not Russia.

In Azerbaijan, he said he was bringing “a clear and simple message for the people of Azerbaijan and the entire region: the United States has a deep and abiding interest in your well-being and security”.

Mr Cheney will next go to Georgia and Ukraine.

In Georgia, he is expected to stress US support for President Mikhail Saakashvili – the man the Kremlin dismissed on Tuesday as a “political corpse” whose leadership it did not recognise.

Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev has also accused the US of helping Tbilisi build its war machine and called on America to review its relations with the Georgian authorities.

Faced with a chorus of international calls for Russia’s isolation, Mr Medvedev has said Moscow does not fear being expelled from the G8 group of rich nations nor does it fear Nato cutting ties with his country.

Early this week, European Union leaders agreed to suspend talks on a new partnership agreement with Moscow until Russian troops have withdrawn from Georgia. But they did not threaten sanctions.

Russia’s Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who stepped down as president earlier this year, praised the European Union’s “common sense”.

But he warned that Moscow would respond to the growing presence of Nato warships in the Black Sea, where Russia’s navy has a huge presence.


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