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Georgia, Russia, Serbia: The Use (or Abuse) of Some Historical Facts?

Categories: Central Asia & Caucasus, Eastern & Central Europe, North America, Bosnia Herzegovina, Georgia, Kosovo, Russia, Serbia, U.S.A., Economics & Business, Environment, Governance, History, International Relations, Politics, War & Conflict

See Global Voices special coverage page [1] on the South Ossetia crisis.

Serbian bloggers follow closely the situation in the Caucasus region. Many of them compared and analyzed the Kosovo issue and the newest opportunities in South Ossetia. Some of them were careful to express their own thoughts and mainly cited thoughts of politicians. Here is a post [2] by Aleksandar T, a Serbian blogger who quoted in his blog some pieces of the last statements by Russia's government officials, who linked military operations in Georgia to certain historical events:

What is this, some propaganda, Western?…

“Russian operation in South Ossetia was very different in regard to American and [NATO operation against Serbia in 1999] [3],
said [Sergey Lavrov] [4], Russia's Foreign Affairs Minister, in an article published in American [Wall Street Journal] [5]. According to his words, when the initiators of bombing campaign finished to attack the military targets, it turns into the attacks on bridges, television towers, passenger trains, civilian objects”, including a direct hit into China's Embassy building in Belgrade.

As far as Russia is concerned, “it has applied force in keeping with the International Law, its own right to defense and the obligations which result from agreements related to conflict in South Ossetia,” said Lavrov. “Russia could not allow that its peacekeepers quietly watch how, right before their eyes, it commits acts of genocide like Bosnian city – [Srebrenica] [6] in 1995,” said Lavrov.

[Rogozin]: [7] [Saakashvili] [8] is not [Gavrilo Princip] [9]

“Russian envoy to NATO Dmitri Rogozin compared the situation in Georgia with the positions of powerful countries before the beginning of the First World War, emphasizing that it is unavoidable that the relationships between Russia and Western countries would become colder.

“The current atmosphere reminds me of the situation in Europe from 1914, when the powerful countries clashed because of one terrorist. I hope that Mikheil Saakashvili will not go down in history as a new Gavrilo Princip,” said Rogozin.

Here are some comments from Aleksandar T's blog.

Doctor Wu says:

It is very clear. In the quarrel with the Western countries Russia is using a concept and a clear picture which are known to them. A mention of Srebrenica is a slap to Dutchmans and Gavrilo Princip is mentioned in the context of how Englishmen think and talk about him: the fool that pulled them into an expensive and unnecessary war. Reading English reactions, this reminder is effective.
Serbia could learn very much from this access.


I think that Russia proved it is not different from the West when its interest is in question. […] Just in this way Russia indirectly supports the position of the West about Kosovo.

Aleksandar T, the author of the post, also got involved in the discussion with commentators. In one of his replies he used editorial article of the Times [10]. Unfortunately, he did not write the date of publishing of this article.

The Western countries change their foreign political priorities, it's written in the lead article of the Times. They exchange their recent struggle against terrorism for stamping out nationalism of new powerful countries such as Russia and China and their approaching to democratic ideals.

Entire editorial article is, essentially, an analysis of the foreign policy of the West, that is, the story about one more “new world system.” Among other things, the overflow of the world wealth and power from the West into the East is especially underlined and such political and economic shifts as the reflection of the competition of ideas worry much more than “conflict” nations which we could watch at the stadium “Nest” in Beijing over two last weeks, this international analysis explains.

According to the editorial writer's opinion, China, Russia and Arabic countries became rich countries because of inexpensive production of oil and its high market price. They triumph because of social inefficacy, economic instability and exaggerated foreign politics self-confidence by the West.

Such position of the world's major powers threatens the struggle for global democracy and might result in the creation of a world community which mainly defines mutual threats.

Regardless of whether the new president of for now the only world major power will be Barack Obama or John McCain, the West will have, in any case, to face the new world system, it was concluded at the end of article.