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Russia

Georgia: Tbilisi Streets

Today, someone I was interviewing here in the Georgian capital mused: "If the Americans bombed Belgrade to stop violence against Albanians in Kosovo, why wouldn't Russia bomb Tbilisi to stop violence against Ossetians?" The question made a bit of sense and, increasingly today, it appeared to be something that weighed on minds here.

The Poker Game of Power in the Caucasus

In the war between Georgia and its renegade provinces, Russia is cooking up its own soup.

The Georgian president wanted to finally fuflfill his dream when he sent his troops in last week on a mission against South Ossetia. Ever since Michail Saakaschwili came to power in November 2003 through the "Rose Revolution," his priorities have been clear: more important than economic reform, joining NATO and the fight against corruption were the reconquest of the renegade provinces of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. ...

Georgia: Surprised by War?

I'm here in the Georgian capital Tbilisi, working on a larger project that is looking at the ways in which Russia deals with internal conflict issues. Georgia's two hot spots, the breakaway regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, have both attracted a great deal of (almost neo-colonial, some say) support from Moscow in recent years and Georgia has increasingly been referring to their separatist conflicts as being directed by Russia, who use the Abkhaz or South Ossetian de facto governments as pawns.