I do not know, or care, necessarily, who is the aggressor or who is truly at fault. I am frightened though that the Russians agreed to a cease-fire and then, apparently, did not live up to the undertakings assumed by that agreement.
There is still serious question about Russian compliance. Mike Eckel writes in an AP story posted late this morning on Yahoo! News:
There were still questions about the extent of the Russian pullout on Friday.I did come across this interesting account from a young Russian from South Ossetia, posted on Ellee Seymour's blog. But, again, it is essentially irrelevant to me, as an American, whether Georgia blundered in South Ossetia. What I want to know is will the new Russia honor solemn obligations it has made before the whole world... or has Cold War II just begun? Has the world gotten back on the road to World War III?
Outside Poti, Russian troops were seen digging large trenches Friday morning near a bridge that provides the only access to the city. Five trucks, several armored personnel carriers and a helicopter were parked nearby. Another Russian position was seen in a wooded area outside the city.
It was not immediately clear whether those troops remained later in the day. Poti is far from any zone that Russian troops could be allowed to be in under the cease-fire.
The initial returns aren't promising.