Caucas – A nodal point in the strategies concerning the access to petroleum resources
For a few weeks now, the news agencies have been talking about massing Georgian troupes at South Osetia border. There has existed a similar replica on behalf of Russia.
While world was watching Beijing, President Saakashvili ordered army offensive in South Osetia, against the Russian troupes. With a discreet American help, obviously, he succeeded a spectacular media strike exactly at a time when weapons should have rest. Reactions have been followed every hour: first, president Bush asked for the immediate stop the hostilities; after that, OTAN and EU asked for the same thing. On the other hand, Putin, while being in Beijing, promises that the Georgian hits will get “an answer from Russia, because the Georgian forces attacked Russian soldiers from “peace maintaining forces””. This promises comes to life few hours later and the hostilities degenerate in a war. An informational one, especially, in which the number of the losses brought out by both sides have only one purpose: to justify the action of those involved in the conflict. Even if president Medvedev came out denouncing a humanitarian catastrophe in the little separatist republic, his already taken decisions do not seem to prove his so-called concern for the thousands of peoples forced to go into wandering. In the end, the political and economic interests are all that matters, either of Russia, or of Georgia.
This is clearly demonstrated by those two leaders’ decisions. On one hand, Saakashvili is withdrawing his soldiers from Iraq, establishes the Martial Law and it seems to push OTAN’s hand (as Georgia does not have the capacity to war against Russia). The Russian forces, on their turn, bombard Poti harbor and Gori city. In this case, Moscow decision cannot be justified no more. Taking into consideration that Poti harbor it is nearby Batumi, a nodal point for Baku – Tbilisi – Ceyhan, the pipe that gives access to Caspian Sea petroleum without asking Russia’s help (as in 1% of the world petroleum) and through which Adjerbadjian tries to build his own way, Russia’s visceral reaction seems more understandable. If president Medvedev had successfully failed into wisely managing this first crisis of his mandate so far, I hope he will not miss this second chance offered by Saakashvili through his declaration of war. Russia is able to humiliate Georgia avoiding a bloody conflict (no leader wants a conflict with the Russian Federation and most probably neither OTAN agrees Georgian president’s declarations of war, thinking twice before allowing Georgia to enter the organization). Russia can wisely mediate this conflict or can prove us it does not overcome its imperialist aggression so far. Those that are about to come will prove either.