Monday, August 11, 2008

The significance of South Ossetia

As regulars here know, it's fairly uncommon for me to post on issues related to the federal government. And short of Iraq, I almost never post on anything of international interest. However, I did post twice on South Ossetia this weekend. And there was a reason - the significance of this action is monumental.

But rather than opining myself, I was listening to NPR on the ride home today. On the show was Robert Kagan. Mr. Kagan penned this memorable piece in today's WaPo. The whole thing is worth a read, but I feel his closing paragraph sums up the Caucasus situation with great clarity:

Historians will come to view Aug. 8, 2008, as a turning point no less significant than Nov. 9, 1989, when the Berlin Wall fell. Russia's attack on sovereign Georgian territory marked the official return of history, indeed to an almost 19th-century style of great-power competition, complete with virulent nationalisms, battles for resources, struggles over spheres of influence and territory, and even -- though it shocks our 21st-century sensibilities -- the use of military power to obtain geopolitical objectives. Yes, we will continue to have globalization, economic interdependence, the European Union and other efforts to build a more perfect international order. But these will compete with and at times be overwhelmed by the harsh realities of international life that have endured since time immemorial. The next president had better be ready.

Like Iraq, oil is a big part of the equation. But there are many more reasons too.

Tim White

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Getty oil is owned by one of Putin's buddies. Stop buying gas there.