Sunday, August 10, 2008

What Are They Thinking?

Buried under the headlines about the Olympics and John Edwards, disturbing news trickles in about the heated escalations between Russia and Georgia. The New York Times reports this morning that Russia has moved thousands of troops, along with tanks and other equipment, into South Ossetia. This is Russia's largest mobilization of military force since the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The intention seems clear: Vladimir Putin has decided it use this minor land dispute to flex Russia's military might against Georgia and possibly Ukraine, who have grown too close to the West for Moscow's liking. Admittedly, the United States and its allies have very little to threaten Putin. Bogged down in two wars, he is willing to gamble that the American response will be mute and he is right so far.

The responses of John McCain and Barack Obama do not go down easily and provide even more evidence to me that these men could not get my vote in the fall. Obama has once again shown himself to be more style than substance. Within one day he issued three different responses, first he blamed both Russia and Georgia for aggressive tactics, then he blamed Russia alone for aggressive tactics and then he decided not to place blame at all and call for a cease fire. Obama is a foreign policy lightweight himself and is relying on a large staff of advisors who are not of one mind themselves, making for an incoherent public position (does this sound like another President of recent memory?). McCain, on the other hand, is all but ready to begin bombing St. Petersburg. His bellicose statements describe a Russia seeking to recollect former provinces and revive the Evil Empire. McCain's overly aggressive rhetoric reveals a serious lack of realism. Our military is very thinly stretched. We simply could not provide Georgia with military support without the return of a draft. Oh, and may I ask, does McCain really think this merits a war with Russia!

Mason Slidell

5 comments:

Joseph Fromm said...

Mason,
The village of my grandparents was over run by Soviet Russian forces in northern Poland. My great grandmother was pulled from her hospital bed and shot. My uncle was at the age of 13 when he was arrested and shipped to a slave labor camp in Siberia, he escaped two years later. The women of my home village were rounded up into one house and systematically raped by the invading Russian forces. My aunt and great-aunts barely escaped with their lives, other relatives where nearly starved to death. I think Sen. John McCain understands the issue quite well.
As Our Lady of Fatima says, "Pray for the conversion of Russia"

JMJ

Joseph Fromm

Markel, SJ / Mason Slidell said...

Joseph,

I hope then you will be one of the first to sign up for military service in the third front of the "war on terror." Godspeed!

Mason Slidell

Joseph Fromm said...

Unfortunately, I am to old.

Markel, SJ / Mason Slidell said...

Pity.

Mason Slidell

Anonymous said...

Mason, you are hilarious.