I make a very good habit of avoiding TV news (I’m trying to keep my blood pressure down) but today I was watching Sky, BBC, Al-Jazera & Russia Now. The majority of banners were counter claims about the apparent ceasefire (seemingly disputed on both sides from the headlines) and Georgia claiming Russia had to ‘prove’ their ceasefire.
Anyway the channels were flicked between the above by my host and the news we finally came upon was a Saakashvili press conference (think it was BBC). He was asked out rightly if he had informed the US prior to the Georgian actions - his convoluted response which listed what had been done against Georgia was to say (and I paraphrase of course) ‘once the attack started we told everyone; the Americans, the Russians , the French….’ He also managed to wangle the word ‘terror’ in-between bleating over ‘democracy’ and ‘freedom’, but not once did he answer the question of if he contacted NATO prior to.
I happened to be sitting with friends who even balked at his evasiveness and the suggestion came up that Saakashvili may have the same speech writer as GW Bush. It was that atrocious. Had I not read the various articles posted on here the past few days regarding this conflict (i.e. not 'Russia attacks Georgia') I think I would not have had on an extra layer of Teflon to ward off the drivel - not that I am taking sides here but Lebanon doesn't half come to mind. As it was put to me 'if you kick a bear in the balls - you'll get payback!'
Like many other commentators I agree the West will not be involved, simply because a bear is not the same as kicking someone when they are down after twelve years of santions (a price that is 'worth it' of 500,000 dead children). (1)
On a side note - we flicked to a French news channel for their take and were greeted with a mime artist! Whilst the few seconds were not probably a true reflection it makes you wonder if this is what a Sarkozi government leads to!!!!!
I don’t need anymore affirmation of why I don’t watch the TV news.
(1) Madeline Albright said this remark in an interview for CBS on 12th May 1996. When asked by the interviewer about the consequences of the sanctions in Iraq “We have heard that a half million children have died...I mean, that’s more children than died in Hiroshima. And – and you know, is the price worth it?” Albright replied “I think this is a very hard choice, but the price – we think the price is worth it.” Quoted from Sanctions, Genocide And War Crimes, Shuna Lennon 29th February 2000, http://www.zmag.org/CrisesCurEvts/Iraq/sanctions.htm