Spying is OK, Everybody Does It

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Only a few days after Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Obama went to Ray’s Hell Burger to bond and eat some dead animals, 10 Russian spies are arrested.

The alleged “deep-cover” spies are accused of working for the SVR, the Russian Federation version of the CIA. Mikhail Fradkov, director of the SVR, reports directly to Mr. Medvedev. {more}

Their job, according to the court papers in the case, was “to search and develop ties in policymaking circles” in the United States.

Each of the 10 was charged with conspiracy to act as an agent of a foreign government, which carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison on conviction.

Federal law prohibits individuals from acting as agents of foreign governments within the United States without notifying the U.S. attorney general.{more}

Develop ties in  policymaking circles to influence policy, acting as agents of foreign governments? Now where have I heard about other groups seemingly doing the same thing.

Oh yeah, AIPAC.

If the FBI and the Justice Department are finally cracking down on these un-American foreign agent spies, then the arrest of hundreds of AIPAC foreign agents must be imminent.

Or maybe since the ‘antics’ of Israel are getting a little too hot and the talk about Israel’s history of spying in America is increasing, it’s time to show the public that they’re not the only spies in town.

Heck, those Russians may have been planning the next 9/11 and I bet they would have filmed/documented the event and danced and sang as they were doing it.

What’s the big deal? We don’t have spies in Moscow?

And what about that Israeli/American spy Jonathan Pollard? Isn’t he still locked up?

Might as well let him go. Just like all the Mossad agents picked up immediately after 9/11 were set free to go back home.

It’s just spying ….. everybody does it.


Putin shuts down Mafia Casinos

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A sign reading “Casino” on a building on Pushkin Square, pictured left on Tuesday, was removed Wednesday in line with the new law banning gambling

By way of MSM Monitor comes the story that all casinos in Russia have been shut down.

Putting a crimp in one aspect of the Judeo-Russian mafia?

MOSCOW – Thousands of casinos, slot-machine parlors, and betting halls across Russia shut down yesterday, complying with sweeping new restrictions that require all gambling business to relocate to four remote regions of the country.

The law was estimated to put more than 400,000 people out of work as Russia’s economic crisis deepens and unemployment is rising.

Russian TV said more than 40,000 workers were affected in Moscow, at 30 major casinos and some 500 smaller gaming halls and slot-machine parlors. News agencies reported that Moscow police were checking gambling halls across the capital to make sure they were closing.

The law, passed three years ago at then-President Vladimir Putin’s initiative, confines gambling to four zones in far-flung regions of Russia, most thousands of miles away from Moscow.

When lawmakers signed the casino closure law in 2006, the move backed the image Putin wanted to project: that of a clean-living, workaholic president. But analysts say the government also saw an opportunity to weed out a criminal element involved in the casino business. {more}

“Weed out a criminal element.” Sounds like good advice to me.

The people of the U.S. should take this as an example and work towards eliminating our own ‘world’s largest casino’……Wall Street.

Along with the criminal mafia of the Federal Reserve.

And their enablers in government.

US Plans To Muscle In On Russia’s Turf

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By: Peter Chamberlin

The recent US/Israeli attempt to foment war with Russia in South Ossetia, and the upcoming “testing” of Obama are acts of desperation by a fading global empire. The American era is over. All that remains is the dispensation of America’s remaining nuclear resources in such a way as to reap the greatest advantage for America’s corporate owners in the great repositioning that is now taking place.

The loud sucking sound you hear is the great vacuum of corporate ownership passing over our heads, as it gathers our last remaining resources to its soulless center. The inhuman parasite class feeds off of the rest of the world and the world does nothing to rid itself of this disease.

The human suffering generated by the wholesale raping of the earth and its abundant resources is irrelevant, as long as profits continue to flow. Acts of desperation taken to remedy the suffering caused by this world-rape, such as the financial bail-out and the resource wars in the Middle East, are emergency measures intended to maintain the constant flow of profit, nothing more. What the world needs is a prolonged period of no profits for the ruling class, with all available assets going instead to the most desperate of the remaining 98% of humanity.

The dictatorship has no intention of allowing this to happen, passing peaceably into a new humane era. For proof of the true intentions of the masters of the universe, just look at what has been done to Iraq to accommodate the seizure of its oil assets. The same savage looting operation has been planned for every key nation in the global energy network. Beginning with the seizure of Iran and Pakistan, nations along proposed pipeline corridors will be taken-over or destroyed, in order to harvest the Caucasus gas and Middle Eastern oil reserves.

The planned Nabucco pipeline is meant to be an instrument of economic warfare to wield against Iran, Russia and China. Investment in this endeavor by the European Union and others represents a substantial investment to prevent eastern powers from developing the shortest, most economical route through Iran.


The near-monopoly on natural gas maintained by the Russians must be broken. Virtually all of the gas lines to Europe in the map below pass through Russian, or Russia-friendly, territory. new_gas_sm

click here to enlarge INOGATE Map of Natural Gas Pipelines

Russia holds the world’s largest natural gas reserves, the second largest coal reserves, and the eighth largest oil reserves. Russia is also the world’s largest exporter of natural gas, the second largest oil exporter and the third largest energy consumer. According to IMF and World Bank estimates, the oil and gas sector generated more than 60 percent of Russia’s export revenues (64% in 2007)”

The surest way to undermine Russian attempts to counter US moves into the Caucasus is to deprive it of a chunk of this income. This will also undermine Russia’s capability to dictate to Europe in the winter and its attempt to challenge American hegemony over Europe.

See: Russia vs. the Ukraine: Gazprom always wins

“The Ukraine’s threat to join NATO and train U.S. missiles on Russian borders is an empty one that will only end up shooting the Ukrainians in the foot (or maybe the head, depending on how high those missiles are pointing). Gazprom has all the power in the situation, and the government-owned corporation knows it.” — Stephanie Grimmett

There is some speculation in the Western media that the “great testing” of Obama will come with a Russian military move to consolidate its position in Ukraine and the other breakaway countries, in order to create a path for its own new transmission line to Europe. The South Stream pipeline will run under the Black Sea to the European Union.


If Russia is allowed to maintain this domination of European gas it will be in a position to challenge US domination, something the neocon West has promised never to countenance. The two former superpowers are headed for a collision over this issue of central Asian pipelines, as they maneuver themselves into an advantageous position for a title fight over future energy sources. Even if one side manages to come out on top after a potential conflict, it would not be able to supply the first cubic meter of gas or oil for at least three years. We are going into a fight based on sheer speculation. The anticipation of future profits is fueling war fever right now.

If the United States had not spent the past eight years antagonizing the rest of the world with our wars of conquest and bullying domination we might be in a better position today to help other nations develop the next generation of energy suppliers (like Kazakistan, Azerbaijan, even Cuba). This next step in energy production and transmission cannot be developed without major investments by Western governments and oil companies. These new resources could be developed at half their potential costs if major wars were not required to create them.

The Santos basin off the Brazilian coast is estimated to be the third largest oil reservoir in the world and will be in production long before the first drop transits the Caspian or Black Seas. 1-tupi-oil-field

Brazil Energy Ministry: Existing Oil Contracts to Be UpheldBrazil’s Mines and Energy minister estimated the deep-water reserves to be between 50 billion to 150 billion barrels.

The oil wars of Bush and Cheney will not end even if they submit to the coming transition of power, just as the robbing of America will not be diminished by nationalizing the savings and retirement accounts of ordinary Americans. The looting and pillaging of Americans can only accelerate, just as the wars being fought to enrich the same evil men who are behind both the military and economic crises can only intensify and spread under the cloak of “change” that is “Obamaism” personified. The only “changes” in foreign policy that the Democrats are laying-out before us will not be ones that bring hope.

In the next 3-4 months we shall bear stark witness to the proof that there is only one party in the United States, the party of war and limitless greed.


At times, Putin has some good ideas

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Nicolas Sarkozy and Vladimir Putin

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(Dmitry Astahov/AFP/Getty Images)

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Vladimir Putin reportedly wanted to hang President Saakashvili “like the Americans hanged Saddam”


Putin wanted to hang Sackass ‘by the balls’

Nicolas Sarkozy saved the President of Georgia from being hanged “by the balls” — a threat made last summer by Vladimir Putin, according to an account that emerged yesterday from the Élysée Palace.

The Russian Prime Minister had revealed his plans for disposing of Mr Saakashvili when Mr Sarkozy was in Moscow in August to broker a ceasefire in Georgia.

Jean-David Levitte, Mr Sarkozy’s chief diplomatic adviser, reported the exchange in a news magazine before an EU-Russia summit today. The meeting will be chaired by the French leader and President Medvedev.

With Russian tanks only 30 miles from Tbilisi on August 12, Mr Sarkozy told Mr Putin that the world would not accept the overthrow of Georgia’s Government. According to Mr Levitte, the Russian seemed unconcerned by international reaction. “I am going to hang Saakashvili by the balls,” Mr Putin declared.

Read full story

Thanks to After Armageddon for the link.

10 Reasons Why We Need a New (Cold?) War

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Thomas Paine’s Corner


By Gary Corseri


1. Russia is too damned uppity. After Georgian “peace-keepers” turned their guns on genuine Russian peace-keepers in South Ossetia, after Georgia bombed and killed 1500 South Ossetians, Russia had the nerve to counter-attack!

2. Russia is too big for its britches. It still possesses a sizeable chunk of the planet’s real estate—twice as much as the U.S. (not counting our foreign bases and various client states). They’ve less than half as many people as we have (and they’re mostly Slavs, anyway). Obviously, a lot of the land conquered under the Tsars ought to be up for grabs in the New World Order. The West needs those resources. It’s our planet too!

3. Russia doesn’t play fair. When we get our apparatchiks in Poland to install missile interceptors on Polish land—the Russkies balk and claim Poland is now a legit target for Russky missiles. What’s this? Diplomacy through intimidation? Just because we do it, does that mean they should? Monkey see, monkey does? Russkovia is full of monkeys with nuclear warhead missiles!

4. Russmonkeya has been howling ever since we broke the ABM treaties. Don’t they realize we have the “freedom” to break treaties at will? Didn’t they ever hear about our “Indians,” with whom we broke all our treaties?

5. Russia has too many good writers whom they take seriously! Solzhenitsyn, for example. He was critical of the Soviet system, found it “soul-less,” etc. and the Russkies listened intently, put the heat on him, and he up and exiles himself to bucolic Vermont, where, fast as a fast-food, deep-fried chicken burger will bring on heartburn, he gets jaundice-eyed about America—calls us “decadent,” “consumerist,” “materialistic,” “immature” and yada yada yada. We, of course, ignore him—which is death to serious writers. So he up-ends himself again, returns to Russkovia, is critical of Mother Russiasky again and this time the Russkies burnish the samovars and conscientiously reflect on what he’s saying. … Naturally, we continue to ignore him.

6. Haven’t the Putin reforms gone far enough? Wouldn’t we rather have a good-ole-boy vodka-boozer like Yeltsin in place, selling off the state’s resources to well-placed Russkie frat-boy-like oligarchs close to Western frat-boy-like oligarchs? Putin is too popular in Leninslavia! With a New Cold War, he’s bound to rein in the reforms, wrest more power to himself and bring on uprisings against him—uprisings our National Endowment for Democracy can shape and mold. Obviously, we need a guy like Brezhnev in there—a somnambulistic status-quo man who will keep a New Cold War simmering.

7. A New Cold War is good for the dollar. The War on Terrorism is getting a bit frayed. Americans are starting to bawl: What’s in this for me? (Typical!) They’re whining about no health care or homes foreclosed or lousy schools, and the memory of 9/11 is already fading, in spite of our best rhetorical efforts. (Can you believe it? There are 6-year olds who weren’t even alive then?) Also, Americans don’t see progress in our War on Terror. Are we any safer now? they ask. We need to ratchet up the fear with a formidable enemy like Russia-Slavia. We need to put people to work making more bombs, missiles, aircraft carriers, etc.

8. If we don’t have a New Cold War with Russia, we’re going to face other problems from upstart nations like China and Iran. The ‘08 Olympics proved to the world the Chinese are just as good as we at presenting a “really good shew.” Better! (Anyone remember the Atlanta Olympics? It was much smaller; people got killed; there was police repression, and besides all that, it was boring!) The Chinese are feeling their oats now and they’re bound to get more assertive as they seek the same oil we’ve been drilling in the Middle East since John McCain wore knickers. They’ve got all those jobs our corporations outsourced to them and in a couple of decades they’ll have a bigger GNP than us, and in a couple beyond that, a bigger per capita! Weren’t they a nation of “coolies” just 100 years ago, and dyed in their wool Mao-jackets just 30 yrs ago? We’ve got to stand up to Russostan now so China, Inc. doesn’t stand up to us later! We’ve got to show these Socialistas who’s the boss cause force is all people like that can understand! As for Iran—it’s a nation of towel-heads and terrorists who hate us for our freedom! If we don’t have a New Cold War now, those Iranians will go on developing their nukes and they’ll join forces with the Russoviks and the noodle-slurpers and we and Israel can kiss our tuchus dasvidanya!

9. A New Cold War is good for our politicians and our media. Our politicians are already humming the tunes. Pretty soon they’ll be “dancing with the stars.” They won’t be able to deliver on 10% of what they’re promising because the corporations and the lobbyists and the media ain’t gonna tie the ribbons until they get their greasy palms greased. And the way to over-grease the palms is to enforce “war taxes.” Which means taking middle class taxes and forking them over to industries and institutions that thrive on death and chaos. It means more of the likes of Jack Bauer on TV making the world safe for democracy by torturing Russkies who mean the farm boys in Kansas and the mothers in Alaska bodily harm. (Isn’t it better to torture one Russkie suspect who might have info to save a million American lives? And if we once in a while waterboard the wrong Yuri or Lara—isn’t that better than little Johnny down the street getting anthraxed even though he still can’t read?)

10. Russian novels are too long and depressing; no American bothers to finish them. A New Cold War, on the other hand, will accelerate Armageddon. We already know that ends in the triumph of Good over Evil. So, in the immortal words of G.W.B., “Bring it on!”

(Gary Corseri, a Senior Contributing, & Arts & Culture, Editor at Cyrano’s Journal, has posted/published his work at hundreds of venues, including ThomasPaine’sCorner, The New York Times and Village Voice. He has published novels and collections of poems, taught in universities and prisons, performed at the Carter Presidential Library and Museum; and his dramas have been presented on Atlanta-PBS, etc. He can be contacted at


Wag the Dog

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Eric Walberg

“US military personnel were in South Ossetia during the attack…”

Was an independent Ossetia inevitable after Kosovo or is it an US election ruse gone wrong.

Russian President Vladimir Putin gave a gritty, straight-talking 30-minute interview with CNN this week in Russian. It was not translated or reported on widely in the US media, which is a shame. He charged that US military personnel were in South Ossetia during the attack, and lectured about such topics as Ossetia’s long membership in the Russian empire (since 1801) and Ossetians’ age-old resentment of Georgian chauvinism, especially following the 1917 Russian revolution and the 1990 declaration of Georgian independence. A South Ossetian legislator has already mooted the possibility that it will eventually become part of the Russian Federation.

When asked by CNN if he would stop threatening neighbours now that the Ossetian crisis was over, he angrily dismissed the question as preposterous, saying it was up to the US and its new Eastern European clients to stop threatening Russia. It is the Polish and Czech missile bases and Ukrainian and Georgian pretenses to join in the nuclear-tipped encirclement of Russia that are the destabilising developments forcing Russia to batten the hatches. The Russians see the bases as a precursor to a much larger system that would undermine the already seriously eroded Russian nuclear deterrent. “For the first time in history — and I want to emphasise this — there will be elements of the US nuclear capability on the European continent. It simply changes the whole configuration of international security. Of course, we have to respond to that,” said Putin at a press conference last year which was also not reported in the mainstream US media.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov underlined Putin’s words Monday, referring to “the reality of the post-America world” and warning that “in the absence of a reasonable multilateral dialogue we will be forced to react unilaterally.” Europe’s inability to produce a new collective security system, “open for everyone and taking into account everyone’s interests,” was to blame for the Georgia crisis. He added: “There is a feeling that NATO again needs frontline states to justify its existence.”

As if to make his point, the Russian military carried out a successful test of a Topol RS-12M nuclear capable stealth rocket from the Plesetsk space centre. Analysts are already speculating that Putin (OK, Medvedev) may well “take out” the Polish missile site. “He has no other option. The proposed system integrates the entire US nuclear arsenal into one operational-unit a mere 115 miles from the Russian border. It’s no different than Khrushchev’s plan to deploy nuclear missiles in Cuba in the 1960s,” writes Mike Whitney at Online Journal. At the very least he “will be forced to raise the stakes and send warplanes over the construction site. That is the logical first-step that any responsible leader would take before removing the site altogether.” So if Cold War II keeps accelerating and something like this happens later this year, what should we make of it? Is this Russia threatening and even invading its neighbour, or is it a justifiable warning to the US to back down from its attempts to instigate WWIII?

Is it possible that all this furfural is really just an early “October Surprise”, in the US electoral tradition that both Reagan and Bush II made such masterful use of? Recall that Ronald Reagan’s advisors orchestrated a delay in returning US hostages from Iran in 1980, tipping the balance in his favour in the elections that year. President George W Bush got a letter purportedly from Osama bin Laden weeks before the elections in 2004, conveniently reminding Americans that he is their defender against terrorists. This possibility was the inspiration for the 1998 movie “Wag the Dog”, where a few weeks before the elections, a presidential advisor hires a Hollywood producer to fabricate and market a war in an ex-socialist bloc country (Albania) and ensure the incumbent’s re-election.

In the current “reality show” version, discretion is thrown completely to the wind, with a certain Randy Scheunemann playing both doctor and advisor to Republican “incumbent” Senator John McCain. Scheunemann’s two-man Orion Strategies lobby firm has been advising Latvia since 2001 and more recently, Georgia. Georgia hopes to following Latvia’s success in joining NATO and — why not? — the European Union. It has already paid Orion Strategies $300,000 to this end.

Putin firmly declared in his CNN interview that the attack on Russian peacekeepers by Georgia was given the green light by US officials as part of an US election campaign ploy. He was most likely referring to McCain, a personal friend of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, and Scheunemann, McCain’s chief foreign policy advisor. Or possibly Joseph Wood, Cheney’s deputy assistant for national security affairs, who was in Georgia shortly before the war began. Or both.

But Putin is caught between a rock and a hard place in this US election year. Even if he’s right about Scheunemann, McCain’s advisor has his counterpart in Senator Barack Obama’s chief foreign policy advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, who while being no fan of Bush, is rubbing his hands in glee over the Russian move to protect Ossetia . So whoever wins in November will undoubtedly push CWII into high gear, come what may.

Will this “Wag the Dog” Part II bring in the votes for McCain? That is far from certain considering his admiration for the now-despised Bush, his endless gaffes and his patent lack of intelligence. However, the key to US elections — the Israeli lobby — is not happy with Brzezinski, and could scuttle Obama’s candidacy, despite Obama’s choice of self-proclaimed Zionist Senator Joe Biden as his running mate. Recall that Brzezinski was foreign policy advisor to ex-president Jimmy Carter, whose Camp David accords forced Israel to give the Sinai back to Egypt.

Enter Scheunemann. He has no such skeletons in his closet. And he is a big fan of the current Middle East make-over designed to ensure Israeli supremacy. As director of Chalabi’s Committee for the Liberation of Iraq he pushed for the invasion in 2003. Mission accomplished, he found his new warrior prince in Tbilisi. Scheunemann is just one of dozens of US and Israeli advisors to the trigger-happy Georgian president. Israel has been actively supporting Saakashvili, eager to see the Georgian pipeline project bypassing Russia completed. Georgian Defence Minister Davit Kezerashvili and Minister of Reintegration Temur Yakobashvili are both Israeli citizens who returned to Georgia to enter politics.

If in fact the US Israeli lobby has decided on McCain for president, and passed the word on to Sheunemann, this could well account for the green light that Saakashvili clearly thought he had to attack Russian peacekeeping troops and Ossetia civilians, killing hundreds if not the 1,500 claimed by Russia. And what better way to force both candidates to shore up Bush’s policy of war and death, just in case by some fluke the suspicious Obama overcomes the many hurdles to a candidate not enjoying the full confidence (i.e., control) of “the lobby”.

You can’t fault Obama for trying to please them, short of firing his patron Brzezinski. Already, he has dropped his willingness to talk to “the enemy”, which clearly means Russia these days, every bit as much as Iran. Under him, Iraq will keep its US bases and Afghanistan will absorb any troops who leave Iraq. Whether or not Washington succeeds in bringing Georgia and Ukraine into NATO is the only moot point in all this, and this really depends more on Russia than on who inhabits the White House for the next four years.

This is all very much like Brzezinski’s scheming as advisor to president Carter. He now boasts that by orchestrating US funding of Islamic extremists like bin Laden from 1979 on, he was responsible for the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan and the subsequent collapse of the Soviet Union. This did nothing to wag Carter’s dog back into power in 1980, but that is of little consequence to these shadowy advisors, who are never without work in the higher echelons of US politics, just as Scheunemann will not suffer in the least if his candidate is found to have Aldzheimer’s and forgets to show for his inauguration next January. And if Obama wins, he will merely cede his White House pass to Brzezinski and continue advising world leaders such as the hapless Georgian president.

It’s quite possible that this ratcheting up of tensions in the Caucasus is intentional. It clinched the Polish missile deal in a hurry and put Russia in a bad light, giving succour to those planning to make the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline the key link in a network bypassing Russia. But the Georgian pipeline was shut down by BP during the recent conflict, and it is far from clear that spin doctors and tweaking the Russian bear’s nose will bring the US any closer to cutting Russia down to size. What this episode and Putin’s steely evaluation did was to further expose the poison at the heart of American politics and confirm the world’s suspicions that Russia is not afraid to stand up for itself.


September 2, 2008 Eric Walberg writes for Al-Ahram Weekly. You can reach him at Al-Ahram Weekly

Post by way of: The Peoples Voice
Map from: Conspiracy Planet

The American-sponsored Terror Attacks Have Begun Against Russian Forces

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Train explodes in Georgia’s Gori
Sun, 24 Aug 2008 07:52:46 GMT

A train carrying fuel has exploded in Georgia after hitting a mine on the railway, days after Russian troops’ withdrawal from the region.

The collision occurred west of the city of Gori which links South Ossetia with Tbilisi.

Gori was the scene of intense conflict recently, following a major Georgian offensive against South Ossetia on August 7, countered by Russia sending in armed convoys and military combat aircraft.

The situation is now under control, with the Russian military completely withdrawing its troops from Georgia on Friday, as specified in a French-brokered peace agreement.

Most South Ossetians hold Russian citizenship and favor unification with North Ossetia — a Russian territory.


Arms dump explosions rock South Ossetian capital

A series of strong explosions have shaken the area around the Emergencies Ministry in the South Ossetian capital, Tskhinvali. According to reports, the blasts happened at an ammunitions dump storing military equipment confiscated from the Georgians. It comes less than a day after Russian troops pulled out of Georgia. Fire engines and emergency services are working at the scene.

Irina Gagloeva from the Committee for Information and the Press in South Ossetia said shells had been exploding for 40 minutes in units of the transport company in the north-west of the capital.

”About 80 shells have exploded. Everywhere is covered in black smoke,” she said.

The spokesperson says it’s hard to approach the area as it’s dangerous. Nearby streets have been evacuated.

”It’s not known what caused these explosions. Allegedly, these shells are the spoils of war left by Georgians. We still don’t know if anybody is inside,” she said.

Russian peacekeepers to patrol security zones in Ossetia

The withdrawal of Russian troops from Georgia has been completed in line with the plan aimed at settling the conflict in South Ossetia, according to military officials.

The pact, worked out by the Russian and French presidents, allows peacekeepers to provide additional security measures in the conflict zone.

Asked about the legality of Russia’s peacekeeping presence in the buffer areas at a news conference on Saturday, Russia’s Deputy Chief of General Staff Anatoly Nogovitsyn quoted a statement by French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

“These additional measures to provide security would mean patrols by Russian peacekeeping forces in the areas specified by the existing agreements along with the withdrawal of the Russian forces to their positions as they were on August 7, before the start of the war,” he quoted Sarkozy as saying.

Nogovitsyn said this confirms the legitimacy of Russia’s patrols of the buffer areas.

According to the Deputy Chief of General Staff, Russia has set up 18 peacekeeping posts in security zones in South Ossetia and would build as many in Abkhazia “in order to deter looters and the transportation of arms and ammunition.”

Russian troops to patrol Georgian port

A Russian peacekeeping contingent will control the Georgian port of Poti in line with the six-principle agreement, said Nogovitsyn.

“These patrols were envisaged in the international agreement,” he said. “Poti is outside the security zone, but that does not mean we will sit behind a fence watching them riding around in Hummers,” he added.

Meanwhile, a Russian war vessel has returned to its base in the Ukrainian port of Sevastopol. The country’s Black Sea Fleet flagship “Moskva” led the flotilla sent on a peacekeeping mission off the coast of Georgia’s breakaway region of Abkhazia.

The ship has been welcomed home by Sevastopol residents.

The “Moskva” is the third ship to return to its base, following a cruiser and a mine-sweeper. Other vessels continue to maintain security off the Abkhazian coast.

Renewed conflict fears

Georgia is intent on achieving territorial integrity at any cost, and may be planning another attack on one of its two breakaway republics, said Nogovitsyn.

“The potential of the Georgian armed forces is being restored only for a new aggression. In its desire to resolve the territorial problem at any cost, it has in fact declared preparations for the third conflict, as they [the Georgian leadership] apparently find the previous two not enough,” he added.

The local population say they fear that Georgia might repeat its aggression in the region. They also say they hope Russian troops will stay in the area to shield them from any possible attacks.