Ten years ago, Russian troops entered Georgia after Tbilisi attempted to regain control over the self-proclaimed republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. It was the beginning of a 5-day war, which resulted in Moscow defining the independence of the upper mentioned regions and increasing the military presence within these territories. According to Georgian authorities, during the war, about 400 people had died, while another two thousand were injured. What are Ukrainians writing on the tenth anniversary of Russo-Georgian War – in the reactions from Opinion.
The President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, noted that the very fact of the Russo-Georgian war was a bright demonstration to the entire global community that no longer the Kremlin is going to live according to the rules of good-neighborliness and to respect international law. Poroshenko noted that imperial ambitions and the eternal desire for the foreign territories are much closer for Moscow. However, according to the head of the state, with the help of joint actions and unity, we can force the Kremlin to stop its aggression and respect the international law. Thus, we will be able to restore the territorial integrity of both Ukraine and Georgia.
Instead, political expert Olexiy Minakov is convinced that Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008 was a “bell”, which Ukraine missed sleeping. Therefore the history has taught our country for being neglect. According to the expert, everything is simple: the instinct of self-preservation didn’t work out, as the Ukrainian authorities were relaxed that time and Russia was the main strategic partner with whom we didn’t want to quarrel. Because of this Russia managed to capture Ukrainian Donbass. The next, according to Minakov, may become Belarus.
Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze, Vice Prime Minister for the European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine, also held a similar opinion, emphasizing that looking backward, we can see what catastrophic consequences were caused for a decade of a silent indulging the aggressor: the fire moved to Ukraine.
The historian and publicist Vakhtang Kipiani emphasized that comparing the Russo-Georgian war of 2008 with Russia’s war against Ukraine is wrong since these wars are not similar neither to the goal nor to the method of conduct or the consequences.
Later, Kipiani recalled his post, created the morning after the Russian aggression against Georgia began. Back then Russia told that on the first day Georgians allegedly killed 1,400 “peaceful people”. It was the lie that gave an excuse to the use of its regular army, which on the eve had entered the territory of Sakartvelo, breaking all the laws.
By the way, here is a brief comparison of the forces of Georgia and Russia, which was also presented by Vakhtang Kipiani.
Journalist and activist Olena Balaba admitted that she believes that Georgia will still liberate its territory from the Russian army: the empire must be destroyed.
Ukrainian actor, radio and television host and blogger Andriy Alyohin recalled that the morning after the beginning of the aggression, he told to his French friends that the same could happen to Crimea. It’s really a pity that those words came true. Besides, Mr. Alyohin was not the only one who could predict the taste of the Kremlin’s machine.
For example, political scientist and publicist, Stanislav Fedorchuk, recalled how ten years ago he suggested that the next ones would be Donbas and Crimea, as the world was indifferent to Georgia’s freedom.
Viktor Taran, a political scientist, looked at the anniversary of the Russo-Georgian war from a different perspective. He has listed ten lessons that Ukraine could have drawn for itself. Among them are following: you shouldn’t hope a lot for the help of the West, the only allies our state have are strong army and navy, and the only thing that can stop the aggressor is country’s membership in NATO. In fact, the complete recipe against the Russian invasion. Only if it was used.
Much more concise than the others turned out to be the blogger Anton Hodza. The author simply stated: while the Russians killed and robbed Georgia, the West expressed its concern and “was pumping Russian gas». What an unexpected scenario, isn’t it?
Valentyna Rudenko, a state, and political activist reminded us how Ukrainian politicians reacted to the events in Georgia. Back then Tymoshenko, together with Ukrainian communists, “Regionals” and Socialists, supported the Kremlin, while President Viktor Yushchenko decided to fly to Georgia. It will be the same plane the Polish president will take. The plane will break down next to Smolensk in two years.
Reactions were collected by Stepan the Goat