Russia Never Wanted a War: Mikhail Gorbachev (Opinion)
Forgive me, Mr. Gorbachev, if I don't quite buy this story. The invasion of Georgia, with its attack on civilians, is far too reminiscent of another Russian invasion: Czechoslovakia.
Ironically, today is the 40th anniversary of the tanks rolling through Czechoslovakia. The Soviet Union, leading other Warsaw Pact nations, set out to crush Alexander Dubcek's ''Prague Spring''.
The Russian bear is stirring--although it's never, in my estimation, been truly asleep. Rather, it's been intermittently lightly napping, one eye open, while rebuilding strength to start swiping at others again.
THE acute phase of the crisis provoked by the Georgian forces’ assault on Tskhinvali, the capital of South Ossetia, is now behind us. But how can one erase from memory the horrifying scenes of the nighttime rocket attack on a peaceful town, the razing of entire city blocks, the deaths of people taking cover in basements, the destruction of ancient monuments and ancestral graves?
Russia did not want this crisis. The Russian leadership is in a strong enough position domestically; it did not need a little victorious war. Russia was dragged into the fray by the recklessness of the Georgian president, Mikheil Saakashvili. He would not have dared to attack without outside support. Once he did, Russia could not afford inaction.