U.S. calls for Georgia-Russia cease-fire

The World

President Bush is deeply concerned about Russian military movements in Georgia and says there is evidence that Russia might start bombing the airport in the Georgian capitol. Bush said Moscow’s ultimate goal might be to topple Georgia’s democratically elected government and called for a ceasefire to be backed by Europe. Bush said Russia’s actions have damaged its standing in the world and jeopardized the country’s relations with the U.S. and Europe. Putin is being equally firm himself, and says Russia would take events in Georgia to its logical conclusion. Putin also criticized the U.S. for flying 2,000 Georgian troops based in Iraq home to Georgia. Putin said the West is being cynical as portraying the Georgian military as victims when they have wiped out villages in South Ossetia. This Russia expert says the Kremlin is using the intervention in Georgia as a signal to the West that their military is back. The Russians are feeling threatened by what they see as a long list of provocation from the U.S. and NATO along its borders, including the missile defense system and also bringing Ukraine and Georgia into NATO. This analyst says the West bears responsibility for enflaming Russian nationalism by cozying up to the Georgian President, but he adds that that doesn’t justify Russian actions in South Ossetia. The analyst says what’s required now is for the U.S. and the West to help secure a ceasefire, which might be tough to do through the U.N., because Russia has veto power there.

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