Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
They read the news. Which mostly says whatthe powers-that-be want it to say, if only because they repeat it enough, and have enough "serious" pundits repeating it in parallel.

I linked to the Philip Stephens article on Russia in yesterday's OT, but here it is again:

Putin maps the boundaries of greater Russia

We need to get this straight. Vladimir Putin's Russia has invaded a neighbour, annexed territory and put in place a partial military occupation. It seeks to overthrow the president of Georgia and to overturn the global geopolitical order. It has repudiated its signature on a ceasefire negotiated by France's Nicolas Sarkozy and disowned its frequent affirmations of Georgia's territorial integrity. Most importantly: all of this is our fault.

The "our" in this context, of course, refers to the US and the more headstrong of its European allies such as Britain. If only Washington had been nicer to the Russians after the fall of the Berlin Wall. If only the west had not humiliated Moscow after the break-up of the Soviet Union.

Surely we can see now what a provocation it was to allow the former vassal states of the Soviet empire to exercise their democratic choice to join the community of nations? And what of permitting them to shelter under Nato's security umbrella and to seek prosperity for their peoples in the European Union? Nothing, surely, could have been more calculated to squander the post-cold-war peace.


Moscow's invasion of Georgia and its public scorn at the likely international response speaks to an entirely different mindset: a retreat from integration and a preference for force over rules. Russia's neighbours are told they can be vassals or enemies. Mr Medvedev boasts Russia is ready for another cold war.

I struggle to see what Russia will gain. It is friendless. Governments and foreign investors alike now know that Moscow's word is worthless. The price of aggression will be pariah status. Mr Putin, of course, will blame the west.

I usually expect better from Philip Stephens. There is no mention of Iras, Kosovo or Saakashvili's aggression.


But when he, and the Economist write these things, lesser journalists follow the cues and repeat the same line.

(I haven't read the Economist for 3 weeks. I found the last 3 in my mail this morning, upon returning home, and fear what I will find)

In the long run, we're all dead. John Maynard Keynes

by Jerome a Paris (etg@eurotrib.com) on Sun Aug 31st, 2008 at 03:37:01 PM EST
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