Some of NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer’s comments at last week’s informal defense ministerial in London may still be causing dark mirth in Moscow, not least of all his assertions on Russia’s recent excursion into Georgia, and the related territorial issues. “You cannot solve this militarily, that two parts of Georgian territory; Abkhazia and South Ossetia, have been recognized by Russia and by Nicaragua and Hamas I think, and that Russian forces are there, but the NATO-Georgia relationship will further develop.”
For those in charge in Moscow it appears to have been solved militarily, and their view is that NATO better get used to the idea. Possession being nine-tenths of the law, Tblisi’s chances of restoring its territorial integrity – ignoring the arguable border lines – look pretty poor.
As for Georgia’s NATO aspirations, Scheffer had this to say: “We inaugurated the NATO-Georgia Commission which is a structure which will oversee what I call the post-Bucharest path on Georgia's Euro-Atlantic integration aspirations or NATO aspirations, and we have an intensive partnership and intensive dialogue and intensive high level political engagement with Georgia.”
None of this kind of “intensity” will matter to Moscow.
Picture Credit NATO