Sunday, August 10, 2008

Russia vs. Georgia: Cause for Concern in Many Ways

I knew this would happen. It's been brewing for more than 100 years. It's not just that Russia is a bully (I love my country, but is the U.S. any different at times?), but the country known as Georgia (why does the news media still call it a "break away republic" - it's been a sovereign NATION for years?!) has had it's share of problems. Russia, in some way, shape or form, has invaded Georgia numerous times over the course of 100 years. The Russians are doing everything they can to increase the instability in the region by supporting the rebel cause. It's not a secret that Russia supports terror, but so do we if it suits our agenda. I'm being painfully honest here.

Having said that, I will be painfully honest that I have friends in the nation of Georgia. Tiblisi is the sister city of Atlanta and through that association, I've come to know some wonderful people I am now scared for, afraid for, pray for their safety and well-being.

But something else has been brewing which I REALLY knew was going to happen: the confusion between Georgia - the state and Georgia - the nation. And if the invasion of Georgia with its current loss of life, anticipated loss of life and temporary loss of freedom weren't so tragic, it would almost be hilarious. I don't know which is stupider: the fact that people have made the confusion between the two or making too much fun out of the confusion while people's lives and livelihoods are in grave danger. Maybe I'm getting too sensitive in my old age; no, I don't think so. I'm too incredibly mean to be sensitive.

I can take a joke as much as any one else and I even pride myself on having a pretty good sense of humor. I like a good smart ass remark, too, but to dwell on the humor of the confusion while there is real confusion is really in bad taste. We Americans sometime get a sense of complacency because we just don't have to deal with this alot. But we can't get desensitized.

Yes, it's funny when people are acting stupid, since stupidity is an excuse for ignorance. I can almost imagine my ex-girlfriend believing that the Russians are making their way to Atlanta via Savannah. Some people are really that, being really nice here, slow, I guess, as this link from Yahoo illustrates:

The poor girl didn't even spell Georgia correctly (her own state), much less Russia. For more reading on what people are saying, see:

It's okay to laugh, but not too long. I'd like to keep a perspective: people in the state of Georgia's sister region are suffering and dying for what they believe in. That in itself deserves some amount of reverence.

In the meantime, perhaps since people spell phonetically these days, maybe it would be easier to call the state of Georgia - Jawja - in order to avoid further confusion.


Comic #409

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Kit (Keep It Trill) said...

Hi Walter!

I've been keeping an eye on this situation but until tonight, not terribly worried, as it's hard to imagine Bush pushing for a nuclear war with the Russians over this, even if an important pipeline does run through Georgia. Some blogger described this as "Russia's Grenada" and another guy felt it would be over in a few days and that the EU won't do jack because they need the Russians for oil.

(BTW, I'm sorry about your friends there and hope they and other civilians will be okay.)

What really worries me is the dozens of ships headed for Iran.

The two concurring situations are disastrous. When we blockade Iran, they see this as an act of war. If they call our bluff and nuke Israel, we'll nuke Tehran. Then the Russians - who are already anticipating our aggression and are no doubt on standby - and possible the Chinese will jump into the mix...

Here's a link about the ships if you haven't read about this already. It sure ain't been on the news.

Massive US Armada Heads For Iran

Walter said...

Thanks for the comments, Kit and I appreciate your concern over my friends.

I knew about the pipeline and the USN armada, but was checking my facts in detail. I think we will see a chain reaction on all fronts about this. While some people hold their breath for signs of a world war, I think we now have it. These are certainly dangerous times that could easily escalate into a nightmare.

The US and Israel have had 'advisors' in Georgia for a while now, and the U.S. has been doing many things behind the scenes in an effort to antagonize Russia. While Russia did attack a sovereign nation, it was provoked by Georgia's pipeline being built in pro-Russian territory. The U.S. would have (and has done) no different.

We must be clear not to despise a country's people for the actions of their government - there is a tendency to do so. I have comments that have been hard on the Russians. Unfortunately, we the people of democratic republics who elect their leaders have no control over them anymore.

It should be noted that Russia is a limited member of NATO and the U.S. had plans to admit Georgia into NATO as well, infuriating the Russians.

"....and the bear will come down from the north....." Revelations

Kit (Keep It Trill) said...

Thanks for the thoughtful response and agree with it all. The Biblical passage you cited at the end was a chilling reminder. Hardly an hour goes by that I don't think about heading for the hills and waiting to see how this thing plays out.

At the same time, I don't want to live in the woods and depend on the good will of others to keep me and the kids from starving to death.

I live about 8 miles from DC. If it weren't for my children, I'd shrug and say what an old psychiatrist co-worker said to us years ago in a staff meeting: "I'm old enough to rather be vaporized than struggle daily and die slowly or from violence in post-nuclear world."

I can't wait to see what you write next, Walter. I love your blog. I wish everyone knew about it.

Walter said...

Thanks Kit! I think many people know about this blog since it comes up in a lot of searches, which is pretty cool. 99% of the visitors to 360 prefer to leave comments via email, so I do the mail bag thing - leaving just their initials and not their names.

I think very highly of your blog as well, Kit. Your perception of the world as we know is an eye I like to keep tabs on. Well done!