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Three years since war: Medvedevís version

By Messenger Staff
Monday, August 6
On the eve of the third anniversary of the Russian invasion of Georgia, Russian president Dmitry Medvedev gave an interview to Radio Echo Moskvy, PIK and Russia Today.

Medvedev used the interviews to once again promote the Russian version of events but there were some details worth mentioning. As Russian newspaper Izvestia reports, the Kremlin has been selecting the media outlets for president Medvedevís interview. Finally they chose Radio Echo Moskvy, Russia Today and surprisingly enough a Georgian channel the First Caucasian (PIK). When the first Caucasian channel started transmitting in Russian language it was negatively assessed by the Kremlin. However as Medvedevís press speaker Natalia Timokova stated, this is a Russian language channel and people watch it in the Caucasus.

For almost one hour president Medvedev discussed the details of the 2008 war. It was obvious that this discussion was part of his campaign for the presidential elections which will be held in Spring 2012. Some time ago Echo Moskvy had an interview with Georgian president Saakashvili who mentioned that according to him Medvedev is not the decision maker in Russia. He claimed that Medvedev is a marionette and Vladimir Putin is the master of ceremonies in Russia, so if Medvedev has any ambition to prolong his presidency for one more term he has to prove that he is not a puppet.

It is obvious that during his presidency Medvedev has not done anything valuable for his country. No reforms or modernizing of Russia, no progress in the economy. The only Ďachievementí of Russia during Medvedevís presidency was the war against Georgia. In his recent interview Medvedev tries to prove that it was him who took the decision to engage in war with Georgia. He attempted to justify his step and take responsibility. He also tries to preserve the image of a liberal politician as well. Medvedev continues protecting the Russian version and says that the invasion of Georgia was a spontaneous but adequate response to Saakashviliís aggressive moves. He refused to shake hands with Saakashvili, he also insisted that Russia had fulfilled completely the August 12, 2008 Medvedev-Sarkozy agreement and that its troops are not going to withdraw from the occupied territory, because Abkhazia and South Ossetia are ďindependentĒ countries now and Russia is not going to retract their recognition. Of course anybody more or less familiar with the situation three years ago would find it hard to prove that the August war was spontaneous. There are numerous facts proving that this war had been thoroughly prepared, technically, militarily, ideologically or otherwise. The introduction of Russian railway regiments in Abkhazia before the war, the propaganda of the Kosovo model, military trainings in the North Caucasus, concentrating on armed forces at Georgiaís northern borders and aggravating the situation in Tskhinvali region are all factors that suggest the Russian invasion was anything but spontaneous.

It was also interesting that Medvedev blamed the US in encouraging Saakashvili in provoking the war. This time Medvedev did not mention the alleged genocide of the Ossetian population as this proved to be a lie. The only argument Medvedev could bring was a Georgian attack on Tskhinvali the details and proof of which still remain vague and unclear.

In conclusion it must be said that Medvedevís interview overall is a lame excuse or explanation for Russiaís arrogant conduct and violation of international law and its commitments to international organizations. It is also a vivid example of the awkward justification of Russiaís aggressive and imperialistic position against its closest neighbors.