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U.S. Recruits Russia As Junior Partner To Maintain Global Dominance

By       Message Rick Rozoff       (Page 1 of 7 pages)     Permalink

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U.S. Recruits Russia As Junior Partner To Maintain Global Dominance
Rick Rozoff

This past weekend the world witnessed an event that until recently would have seemed inconceivable: A Russian head of state attended a summit of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

President Dmitry Medvedev participated in the NATO-Russia Council meeting during the second day of the summit in Lisbon, Portugal on November 20 with the heads of state of NATO's 28 member states.

The national leaders signed a Joint Review of 21st Century Common Security Challenges, agreed on resuming joint - NATO and Russian - theater missile defense cooperation and "reconfirmed a shared determination to assist in the stabilisation of Afghanistan and the whole region." [1]

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That is, Russia's Medvedev endorsed NATO's agenda without adding anything of substance to it and without asking anything by way of a quid pro quo.

The joint declaration states that "we have embarked on a new stage of cooperation towards a true strategic partnership"  and "that the security of all states in the Euro-Atlantic community is indivisible, and that the security of NATO and Russia is intertwined." [2] It also applauds Russia - referred to in the third person - for "facilitating railway transit of non-lethal ISAF [International Security Assistance Force] goods" through its territory for the war in Afghanistan and for "resuming its support to NATO's operation Active Endeavour in the Mediterranean Sea." The summit declaration referred to Operation Active Endeavor, now in its tenth year, as an Article 5 mission; that is, as part of the first and to date only activation of NATO's collective military assistance provision.

On November 23 Russia signed a pact with NATO to allow "NATO to ship armored vehicles and other equipment from the region [the greater Afghan war theater] back to Europe using the same route via Central Asia and Russia." [3]

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The day before the NATO-Russia Council meeting, where Russia was outnumbered 28-1, U.S. President Obama met privately with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, Russia's Public Enemy No. 1 as military analyst Alexander Golts described him on the occasion.

Saakashvili, who was educated in the U.S. on a State Department fellowship and came to power through a U.S.-sponsored coup in 2003 which its perpetrators termed the Rose Revolution, ordered sniper and mortar attacks on South Ossetia on August 1, 2008, killing six people including a Russian peacekeeper. The day after the Immediate Response 2008 NATO war games led by 1,000 U.S. troops had ended and with American soldiers and military equipment still in Georgia.

Six days later, as the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games was underway in Beijing, Georgia launched an all-out assault on the South Ossetian capital of Tskhinvali.

By the time Russian reinforcements beat back the Georgian offensive and the war ended five days after it had begun, 64 Russian service members had been killed and 323 wounded. The U.S. provided military transport planes to bring 2,000 Georgian troops back from Iraq for the fighting.

Shortly afterward the U.S. rewarded Georgia with the signing of the United States-Georgia Charter on Strategic Partnership and NATO formed the NATO-Georgia Commission, out of which an individually tailored Annual National Program(me) was created to further Georgia's integration into the North Atlantic Alliance.

The declaration issued by the recently concluded NATO summit in Portugal includes:

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"At the 2008 Bucharest Summit we agreed that Georgia will become a member of NATO and we reaffirm all elements of that decision, as well as subsequent decisions. We will foster political dialogue and practical cooperation with Georgia, including through the NATO-Georgia Commission and the Annual National Programme. We strongly encourage and actively support Georgia's continued implementation of all necessary reforms...in order to advance its Euro-Atlantic aspirations. We welcome the recent opening of the NATO Liaison Office in Georgia which will help in maximising our assistance and support for the country's reform efforts. We welcome Georgia's important contributions to NATO operations, in particular to ISAF. We reiterate our continued support for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia within its internationally recognised borders....We continue to call on Russia to reverse its recognition of the South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions of
 Georgia as independent states."

During the opening hours of the Georgian-Russian war of 2008 Mikheil Saakashvili was reported to have held "several phone talks including consultations with NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer." [4]

That almost 400 Russian soldiers had been killed and wounded by Georgian military forces trained, equipped and supported by the U.S. and NATO before, during and since the war doesn't appear to mean much to President Medvedev. That his 28 fellow heads of state in the NATO-Russia Council had unanimously supported the perpetrator of the 2008 war while demanding Russia humiliate itself by rescinding its recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia - and withdrawing its troops, thereby leaving both states easy prey for Georgia's next assault - also didn't take the fixed smile off Medvedev's face during his huddling with President Obama and 27 other NATO leaders this past Saturday.

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Rick Rozoff has been involved in anti-war and anti-interventionist work in various capacities for forty years. He lives in Chicago, Illinois. Is the manager of the Stop NATO international email list at: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/stopnato/

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