The Russian invasion of its former satellite, Georgia, is still under way despite the supposed cease-fire and Russian denials of further military aggression. Speaking early Tuesday, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili appealed to the European Union and other international groups to intervene, asking for mediation. But, he said, “Russia isn’t ready” for that.
And it clearly isn’t. Later Tuesday, according to a report in the International Herald Tribune, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Saakashvili had to be forced from office before violence could end. Lavrov, “…said Russia can no longer view ‘a man who issued orders to commit war crimes’ as a negotiating partner and therefore ‘without the departure of Saakashvili it is impossible to stop the conflict in South Ossetia’.”
Saakashvili, who is apparently more knowledgeable of history than the heads of state to whom he appeals, said the Georgians would never allow their nation to be broken into pieces. Russia says its attacks have stopped, but -- as President Bush said Wednesday morning -- it’s clear that they have not.
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