Follow-up, August 26
Michael J. Totten's pristine, first-person, on the scene narrative is a must-read for anyone concerned with this issue. This free-lance reporter, in my opinion, has more credibility than all the officials on any "side."
Be prepared to follow a very complex backstory and come away with as many questions as you started, although they may be different questions than when you began reading.
I must confess my own loss of interest when I realized the roots of this conflict are far more tangled and too deeply embedded in both ancient and modern history for any outsider to truly appreciate. We in America have no more understanding of ancient Asian conflicts than newcomers to America have of our own Civil War, or the nuances of American Colonial history. In fact, our own history is, by comparison, a mere footnote (less than three or four centuries) compared with the thousand and more years predating Asian conflicts.
Proceed with care, then, as you wade into some very deep waters. And do not overlook this man's report.
A thoughtful commenter from Georgia responded to my post about the Russian incursion a few days ago. The handful of regular readers to my little blog will not likely notice what has developed into a worthwhile exchange of ideas and opinions in that comment thread, so I am publishing them here for easy access.
The post is coming up in Google searches so more people are looking at it than normal. One of my stat counters that tracks where hits originate lists ten visitors to that post, with myself and one other being the only ones from the US. The others are from Romania (2), Canada, Czech Republic, Georgia (3), Spain and Moscow, Soviet Federation.
This is a small sample but I think it is noteworthy. Canaries are also small but miners once paid close attention to the health of caged canaries when they were deep underground. Need I say more?
It's not necessary to reprint the other post content. Here is a link to that rather lengthy post and the map to which the writer refers in his first remark.
I'm honored and pleased that someone with a good command of English who obviously lives in Georgia has taken the time and interest to share these important and insightful comments. I expect more may follow, so anyone who interested is invited to join in. What we have access to here is the rare human element tha complicates but often helps to resolve nearly all conflicts.
I have decided to leave this matter alone for the moment. I want to remain neutral until I learn more. Others are free to engage in arguments in the comments as long as they remain civil, but I'm dropping out. My discovery of JOTMAN's blog seems to have been the best outcome for me from these events.
Here are additional links regarding the Russian incursion for readers who want to know more.
Pictures from Georgia v. Russia DO NOT OPEN IF YOU'VE NEVER SEEN WAR http://tinyurl.com/5bkmhb (NSFW)
And from a commenter at that site...
Another commenter left this link...
Stalin statue in Gori