Bush wins Obama’s backing over Georgia

Agence France-Presse
First Posted 10:05:00 08/22/2008

CHESAPEAKE — Democratic White House hopeful Barack Obama staged a rare show of unity with President George W. Bush Thursday by endorsing his approach to the crisis between Georgia and Russia.

Obama, whose Republican rival John McCain has been hammering the Georgia issue to flag his own national-security credentials, said tough talking alone would not suffice in diplomacy.

“The situation with Russia and Georgia is very serious. This is the first time that Russia has moved into somebody’s territory since the collapse of the Soviet Union,” Obama told an evening rally here in southern Virginia.

“It indicates a new stage in the relationship between Russia and the West. We’ve got to be firm with the Russians, in alliance with our European allies, that this kind of behavior is intolerable,” the Illinois senator said.

While opposing the US president on just about every point of domestic and international policy, Obama said: “I’m supportive of what George Bush has been doing.

“There will be a time later for politics. I’m a big believer that when you’re in a crisis, America speaks with one voice,” he said, drawing warm applause from a capacity crowd of 2,600 people in a school gymnasium.

Bush told Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili on Thursday that he wanted a quick end to Russia’s “siege” of the former Soviet republic, the White House said.

Earlier, the White House had demanded that Moscow withdraw its forces “now” from Georgia and warned there can be no Russia-NATO military cooperation until the volatile crisis is over.

Obama has said Russia’s aspirations to join the World Trade Organization should be put on ice, while the uncompromising McCain has gone further by calling for Moscow’s eviction from the powerful G8 club of nations.

At the rally, the Democrat said his message to Russia was that unless its forces vacate Georgia, “we will be suspending a whole range of international talks.”

Discussing US foreign policy as a whole, the Iraq war critic said: “There are times when we are going to have to use military force.”

But with effective use of diplomacy and alliances, “if we are leading by example, we will have more influence and more leverage than just by acting tough,” he said.

“We have to act tough and smart,” Obama added, a day after top advisors accused McCain of being “reckless” and “trigger-happy.”

Russian tanks poured into Georgia on August 8, initially to repel an attempt by Georgia’s small, US-trained army to seize control of pro-Moscow South Ossetia, which unilaterally declared its independence from Tbilisi after the Soviet Union fell.(PDI)


My Take:

Very clear.

Whoever takes the chance to sit as new US President, will serve its dreaded and devious foreign policy.


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