Maybe I’m missing something here, but I don’t see the bellicose calls for World War III and / or the use of military force against Russia — that the left is claiming — from anyone who has the authority to execute such a plan. The Bush administration isn’t offering the use of our military to do any fighting, and even if it were, does anyone expect that the Democratic Congress led by Pelosi and Reid would approve any sort of military action against Russia? I doubt it. This is a tough situation for the current administration, and Russia will continue to defy the international community whether they have to deal with a President Obama or a President McCain.
What can we do to punish Russia for their invasion of a sovereign country? There’s always international sanctions, a strongly worded letter from the UN, and getting them kicked out of the G-8. Something must be done to show Russia that there are consequences to their actions. I wouldn’t presume to know what the best way to deal with this situation is, but I don’t think that President Bush intends to take military action against Russia. I’m not sure there is a way to contain Russia by diplomatic means, but we don’t have any other options. The challenge we have is how to be a strong ally of Georgia and other allied countries in that region without taking steps toward war with Russia.
Sending humanitarian aid to Georgia is a good idea and we should be supporting them in that way. But there has to be more we can do to show support for countries like Georgia who have been good and loyal friends to the United States of America. We will be more likely to get international support for fighting global terrorism and the threat of radical lslam if we show that we can be trusted to defend our allies when it is required of us to do so. The trick is attempted containment of countries like Russia and Iran without the threat of military force. History tells us that this is impossible, but if the UN imposed enforceable sanctions with some real bite to them, it might delay any future aggression by Russia for a few years. That would be a good place to start, but I don’t expect the UN to do this, because accountability for rogue actors is beyond their limited authority and ability.