Watch very carefully over the next few days, weeks and months.
President Saakashvili a graduate of Columbia and George Washington U. here in the states (his LLM and Dr. of Law degrees) had encouraged increasing ties to the US, however, he also unilaterally took back the rogue state of Ossetia.
The Russians unilaterally began issuing Russian passports to the Ossetians recently leading to the current flair up.
The danger is the conventional nature of this war, and what kind of weapons will be unleashed.
As you may know, much of the former Soviet Union’s nuclear weapons stock is not accounted for. Some of these weapons were located in Georgia.
In addition, throughout Russian history, long before the Russian Revolution, in other words, the Russian leaders have sought one principle goal – a warm water port. Georgia being one of the former Soviet Union’s southern most Republics, was a key to that aspiration.
In addition, the Russian’s are also looking for the oil pipelines to the Baltic that are part of Georgia. Of course, Georgia’s access to Turkey is another inspiration.
Finally, the most worrisome aspect is Vladimir Putin’s personal involvement despite his supposed ‘retirement’ from the office of Prime Minister.
Cross your fingers and hope for a peaceful resolution.
Although, as with most of Eastern Europe, this areas has been in dispute throughout history.