Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                             Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
____________________...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                             Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
____________________...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                            Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
_____...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                                Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
_...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                             Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
____________________...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                              Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
___...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                             Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
____________________...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                               Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
__...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                             Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
____________________...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                                Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
_...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                              Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
___...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                                              Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
___...
Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia                             Oscar Sundevall
Spring 2009
Final paper
____________________...
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Oscar Sundevall Offensive Realism And The Power Of Predictability In The South Ossetian War

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Oscar Sundevall Offensive Realism And The Power Of Predictability In The South Ossetian War

  1. 1. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ Offensive Realism and the power of predictability in the South Ossetian War By Oscar Sundevall Using the positivist methodology of Friedman I research if Offensive Realism offers a power of predictability in the South Ossetian War, given the school of thoughts focus on system level factors. If state actions are rational (and rationally aggressive) Georgias war on South Ossetia should also be traceable to and contingent on system level conditions, and not sub-systemic factors. My findings are that Offensive Realism does not offer any power of predictability in the war, although it’s assumptions does fit Georgia to a degree, they cannot be traced to and be regarded as causally connected to the five core assumptions of Offensive Realism. My findings are not conclusive, but I find evidence supporting the cause of Georgias war was foremost caused by president Saakashvilis notion that a war would further his foreign policy agenda of a future NATO-membership. This being a sub-systemic factor, Offensive Realism is neither able to explain the war nor predict it. Word count: 3600 1
  2. 2. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ The life of man, solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short - Thomas Hobbes, 1651 Realisms basic tenant is hobbesian - the world lacks a leviatha, and is therefore a world of anarchy. The life of a state is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short. This fact – or outlook – has profound effects on Offensive Realisms analysis of international relations. With no central power, states operate in structurally insecure environment where each state must protect itself. As Kenneth Waltz put it, self- help is necessarily the principle of action.1 Realism, especially in it’s offensive version presents itself as an objective / amoral theoretical framework for analyzing statecraft2, it makes claims of predictability and objectivity on the basis of the international system having a political logic of its own. Due to the lack of a central power, international relations are determined by meta-factors: it is system driven. Foreign policy is thus to a high degree rational responses to external factors. If this is so, realism should have high predictability power. Put in methodological terms, the realist school of thought has a positivist view of ontology, i.e. there is “a” truth to state relations. The aim of this paper is to test just this, by using the positivist methodology of Friedmans as developed in “Essays in positivist economics” on a most likely case where several realist scholars made predictions of the future of the countries international relations and foreign policy. Theory Offensive Realism is a theoretical framework occupied with systemic and metal- level explanations, making claims of scientific predictability. From an ontological perspective, it is a positivistic science much like neo classical economics, sharing the same reductionism, where large social events can be reduced to and explained by a few “laws”, in the case of Offensive Realism a few systemic laws (bellum omnium contra omnes, etc.). In political science, Offensive 1 Waltz, Kenneth, Theory of International Politics 2 Waltz, Kenneth, Man, the State and War 2
  3. 3. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ Realism shares its methodological outlook with rational choice theory. Both search for theories from which “regularities” in politics can be deduced. When rational choice theory seeks to break down aggregate units into identical, atomistic, self-interest-seeking individuals, realisms basic tenant is the same, only on a larger scale: Individuals are replaced with states. Realisms systemic approach of “laws” of international relations, at least in its offensive version is thus unsuitable (and unwilling) in theorizing and predicting low-level actions and phenomena – “triggers” - that could affect international relations (public opinion, “the X factor”, etc.). A theoretical framework that has high descriptive power however, is historical institutionalism and its methodological tool of path dependency. As definied by Goldstone, a system that exhibits path dependence is one in which outcomes are related stochastically to initial conditions, and the particular outcome that obtains in any given ‘run’ depends on the choices or outcomes of intermediate events between the initial conditions and the outcome.3 Path dependency is based on the premise of increasing returns, a phenomena that breaks the “law” of diminishing returns in economics, but has proven to be suitable in explaining political outcomes.4 Since politics is collective in nature, all political decisions are highly dependent on ones expectations of other peoples political actions, a marginal increase in participation will create an increasing-returns process, making a movement path dependent. Politics, unlike economics, also lack transparent signal systems. Political errors are hard to observe and correct. Actors operating in such an environment tend to filter information into mental maps, i.e. social interpretations of a political environment are prone to be guided by popular opinion, norms, customs and institutions. Politics is thus highly susceptible to path dependency and increasing returns.5 System-level theories however do not take into account sub-systemic factors when formulating “laws” of politics and in making predictions. Is it a problem for offensive realism that the general theory and school of thought seem to be unable to cope with sub-systemic factors in international relations? Not necessarily. If the theory is viewed through the lens of a positivist methodology as outlined by Friedman, the test of any theory is not if it is descriptive, but weather they produce good approximations for the purpose at hand. The only way to do this is to test if a theory works, i.e. if it can give us good 3 Goldstone quoted in Ma, Shun-Yun, Political Science at the Edge of Chaos: 64 4 Ma, Shun-Yun, 2007: 65 5 ibid 3
  4. 4. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ predictions.6 Put differently, offensive realism might be empirically false or grossly off in its description of reality (just as homo economicus is not a description of human behaviour, but rather a methodological tool). But has offensive realism a higher level of predictability than liberalism, neo-liberalism, and historical institutionalism / path dependency (the latter being a methodological tool for describing outcomes post hoc, rather than a predictive theory) it does not matter, even if all the competing theories and methodological approaches are “more realistic”. Research question The aim of this paper is to test realisms power of prediction. I have chosen the country of Georgia and the war with Russia during August of 2008. I find Georgia to be an interesting case for two reasons 1) If offensive realisms claims of international relations having its own political logic detached from intrastate politics, the power of predictability should be high even though a Georgian attack on South Ossetia (and Russian peacekeepers) seems like the direct opposite of rational state behavior. 2) Georgia is the most powerful military power in the region next to Russia, given the assumption of rational state behavior, where rationality is aggressiveness it would be interesting to test if Georgias now documented aggressive behavior is contingent on system level factors, or if it can be traced to specific circumstances in it’s foreign policy. My research question is thus does the offensive realist paradigm offer power of predictability in the South Ossetian War? Can Georgias behavior be regarded as a rational behavior contingent on system level factors? I.e. if Georgias behavior was rational, is it contingent on sub-system level factors or not. Due to the small scope of this paper I do not have the possibility to portray the conflict in its entirety. The major part of the paper is dedicated towards the analysis. The chapter below is foremost a brief summary of the conflict with the focus on South Ossetia, and not Abkhazia. 6 Friedman, Milton, 1966, Essays in Positive Economics: 15 4
  5. 5. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ The South Ossetian War The South Ossetian War was a war fought between former soviet republic Georgia and Russia during August of 2008 over the separatist area of South Ossetia. The prelude to last year’s conflict was one of several small wars fought during the break up of the Soviet union. South Ossetia, being an autonomous oblast (region) and culturally distinct part of Georgia during the communist rule sought independence peacefully from Georgia in 1990 by demanding the recognition as an independent republic. As a response Georgias Supreme Council voted for the abolishment of South Ossetias status as independent oblast, dispatching troops to the region. A small war ensued, resulting in Georgia gaining some parts of South Ossetia. A peace keeping contingent (The JPKF) was created, composed of troops from Russia, North Ossetia and Georgia and a deal was brokered establishing a security corridor along the South Ossetian territories. South Ossetia remained in a legal limbo, neither as a sovereign state nor as a integrated part of Georgia. During the following years however, peace ensued. Georgia had been preparing for war during the summer of 2008 before the hostilities broke out on August 7, by redeploying ground forces and taking control of strategic positions around Tskhinvali, the “capital” of South Ossetia. Several weeks before the heavy fighting broke out on August 7, South Ossetian troops had been engaged in low level skirmishes with Georgian troops. On August 7, Georgia launched artillery strikes on Tskhinvali, killing up to 18 Russian peacekeeping forces and an uncounted number of civilians. On August 8 Georgian infantry had entered Tskhinvali and engaged South Ossetian troops and the Russian peace keeping battalion in the city.7 Details on troops maneuvers and strengths are sketchy at best, Georgian sources claiming Georgian forces were engaged in heavy fighting with the Russian first Battalion of the 135th regiment before the dawn of August 8. Russian sources claim they engaged Georgian forces in Tskhinvali, in aiding the station Russian troops.8 Continuing Russian troops reinforcements pushed the Georgian forces out of Tskhinvali on the 10th of August, moving on into Georgia proper and occupying the City of Gori, 7 Der Spiegel 08/25/2008: http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,574812-3,00.html 8 New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/16/world/europe/16georgia.html&OQ=_rQ3D3Q26pagewante dQ3D3Q26refQ3Dworld&OP=2d9bda95Q2F)2Q51()Q2AQ7B_OpQ7BQ7BQ3AI)Ioo0)oB)8K) 2Q7BpxQ2A)Q51Q3BpQ7BXQ51)8KsQ51Q7BpsZmhYQ3AHx 5
  6. 6. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ the main staging area of the assault on South Ossetia.9 Russian troops also advanced on the costal city of Poti, sinking naval vessels. Moving within 55 km of the capital of Tibilisi. On the 12th of August president Medvedev ordered an end of military operations. Two days later all parties signed a peace plan, stipulating among other things a withdrawal of Russian and Georgian forces to their previous positions and an international debate on the future status of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Russian troops remained as occupants of parts of Georgia proper for two months, later withdrawing to South Ossetia and Abkhazia, leaving the area for EU cease fire monitors. As of today Russia maintains 3700 troops in South Ossetia and Abkhazia under “bilateral agreements with independent states”.10 They are also planning on building several military bases in both regions.11 Analysis What prompted the Georgian attack on South Ossetia? Can the war be explained by a realist paradigm? Can the breakout of the war be traced to system level conditions? Georgian officials have admitted that they did not expect such a massive response from Russia, nor that Russia would be willing to defy international opinion in attempting to undermine Georgian sovereignty, destroying Georgias military and damaging it’s economy. Georgia grossly underestimated the Russian response, and conversely overestimated the support of the west. It took days for Washington and Brussels to issue statements in support of president Saakashvili.12 Recapitulating the five assumptions of offensive realism as expressed by Mearsheimer we can analyze how and if the realist framework has explanatory power in the South Ossetian War: 9 BBC 08/09/2008: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7550804.stm 10 The Washington Post 08/18/08: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp- dyn/content/article/2008/08/17/AR2008081700294.html 11 Russia Today 11/28/08: http://www.russiatoday.com/Top_News/2008-11- 28/Russia_to_spend_US_400_million_on_military_bases_in_Abkhazia_and_South_Ossetia_.ht ml 12 Anotenko, Oksana: “A war with no winners”: 25 6
  7. 7. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ 1. The international system is anarchical While opinions differ on how much so, and to what degree it is significant, it can be assumed that it is a basic tenant of Georgian foreign policy as the country sought to secure a NATO Membership Action Plan (MAP) in April 2008. NATO is in essence a mutual security arrangement designed to over bridge the anarchical structure of international relations (as is EU, UN, etc). Failing to be admitted to the MAP, the pre-stage of full NATO membership Anotenko argues that Sakashvili needed a “CNN moment” to position the country in the spotlight, forcing the hand of the West, testing if NATO would accept Russian hegemony in Eurasia and basically sidestepping the MAP process.13 This thesis is supported by the fact that Georgia for months before the conflict sought to discredit Russia as a peacekeeper and mediator in the latent conflict during the break up of the Soviet Union.14 2. States are rational The thesis of state rationality stipulates that states react to outer stimuli in an objective way, i.e. their responses are determined by system level conditions, there is a way to respond and act. States are also presumed to be power maximizers in the sense that each state wants to be the most powerful in the system (be it regional as in the case of Georgia). Georgia is the most powerful military force in the area next to Russia, with the world’s highest average growth rate of military spending, reaching 6% of GDP in 2007.15 Maximizing power in geographical sense, i.e. invading South Ossetia would be a small feat for the large Georgian military equipped with advanced western weaponry. President Saakashvili invested political capital in being admitted to the MAP, failing to do so one can theorize if he did not take a calculated risk in invading South Ossetia, trying to force a response from the West. Assuming that the agenda of being admitted to the MAP was – and is – a high priority for Saakashvili, and that a provoked conflict with South Ossetia where a Russian military response would not include Georgia proper it would be rational to invade, given that the prize would be a fast track to NATO membership. 13 Anotenko, Oksana: “A war with no winners”: 25 14 ibid 15 Times Online 11/08/08: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/europe/article4498709.ece 7
  8. 8. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ In economic theory there is a concept called rational irrationality, it is developed to explain bad public policy, but it can also be enlightening when applied to “bad” foreign policy (being invaded by Russia was arguably not Saakashvilis goal).16 A country has no incentive to invest time and energy in analyzing policy options if there are no consequences from choosing a bad one. I.e. the cost of bad policy was a negative externality from the standpoint of Saakashvili if he assumed a) Russia’s response would be limited to South Ossetia, and b) any advances on Georgia proper would be hindered by NATO deploying or threatening to deploy forces to Georgia. 3. States have survival as t heir primary goal. While both premise 1 & 2 of international relations seem to have some power of explanation in the South Ossetian War, the premise of survival as a primary goal does not seem to have a bearing on why Georgia invaded South Ossetia. The only indication that Georgian “survival” (territorial integrity) was threatened comes from the Russian troops conducting the exercise “Caucasus Frontier 2008” during the summer, with the goal of among other things practicing assistance to Russian peacekeepers in South Ossetia. They remained close to the Georgian border when the exercise ended on 2nd August. The troops, being the rough equivalent of a division and a mechanized battalion does pose a military threat by their power and numbers alone (roughly a third of the size of the entire Georgian military). However, speculating in the reason for the Russian military command to leave the troops close to the border is not easy. By the 2nd of August border skirmishes and heated verbal exchanges between Georgia and South Ossetia makes it close to impossible in confirming cause and effect of the Russian troop presence. Without inside knowledge of the process inside the Georgian presidents ministry, it is not possible to judge if they did see the troops as a threat to their survival as a state. Georgian troop movements were ambiguous; one can argue from a strategical standpoint that an attack on South Ossetia and the Roki tunnel that connects the region with Russia was a rational choice, as it would effectively block Russian troop movements if they did threaten Georgia. On the other hand, in the event of not reaching the Roki tunnel, widening the flanks would make Georgia proper more vulnerable to attack. 16 Se Caplan, Bryan, 2007: “Myth of the Rational Voter” for a developed explanation 8
  9. 9. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ 4. All states possess some offensive military capability There are states that have none, but that is irrelevant in the case of the South Ossetian War since all parties involved did have, and do have, offensive capabilities. What is relevant however is that the South Ossetian military has but a miniscule fraction of the capabilities of Georgias. South Ossetia had an estimated GDP of $15 million, and a per capita income of $250 in 2002.17 Georgia spends about 170 times of the 2002 South Ossetian GDP in 2008 on it’s military alone. Given the premise of an anarchical system, where each state is responsible for it’s own security, the miniscule capabilities of South Ossetia, the comparatively massive ones of Georgia, the “rational” prize of a possible fast track to NATO membership, and the possibility that the cost of the war would be a negative externality for NATO and not Georgia, an attack would be a rational choice. 5. States can never be certain of the intentions of other states It is due to lack of source material not possible to determine in what way military planners, the president and other decision-makers in Georgia were contemplating the intentions of the Russian military. We can however assume that uncertainty was a factor leading up to the war, given that Russian president Medvedev is supreme commander of the Russian military. Simply put, decisions of war are determined in the Kremlin, the possibility of Georgia having inside knowledge of Russian intentions were miniscule. Therefore, the theory of uncertainty can be regarded as true in the South Ossetian War. The explanatory power of Realism In retrospect, the breakout of the South Ossetian War does not seem odd. Saakashvilis primary goal of foreign policy was the acceptance into NATO. He had a technologically advanced military force, the most formidable of all regional powers next to Russia. Georgia had on its border a small breakout region of strategic importance (the Roki 17 Mamuka Areshidze, "Current Economic Causes of Conflict in Georgia", UK Department for International Development 9
  10. 10. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ tunnel connecting the entire region to Russia), with a legal status in limbo following the first war. Given the chance of sidestepping the MAP-process by provoking a Russian military response, and the assumption that a Russian military response would be limited to South Ossetia, and that any further advances would be hindered by a NATO threat of deploying forces, the rational choice of Georgia was indeed an attack. But the million-dollar question is if one could anticipate the war by using an offensive realism framework? In other words, to what extent was the war driven by system level factors? If we could replay history with former president Eduard Shevardnadze still in power in 2008, would he as well have initiated hostilities? I argue that it is highly questionable. The major system level factors would still be the same (anarchy, rationality, military capability), but the “trigger” seems in the conflict to be Saakashvilis foreign policy goal of NATO membership, and more specifically his willingness to gamble. Pushing the proverbial button is inevitably a very sub-systemic factor in the grand scheme of things. While Georgia failed to be accepted to MAP, Georgia was assured in a communiqué that the country would be admitted once it met the requirements.18 The strong US support of Georgian NATO membership is based on the country’s strategic importance as a transit country for the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline from the Caspian Sea to the Mediterranean Sea. It would ease the West’s dependence on Middle Eastern Oil, and balance Russian dominance in the region.19 Given this, a pro-western leader willing to take a gamble in the quest of fulfilling his foreign policy goals, would be “right” and “rational” in attacking South Ossetia. But can his actions simply be explained by system level factors? If we regard anarchy, rationality, survival, military capability and uncertainty as dependent variables and exchange pro-western leader Saakashvili with a hypotetchical leader with no promises of a future NATO membership, would he also be willing to provoke a Russian response? What reason would he have? Georgia, although a powerful military force, has but a fraction Russia’s military might (parts of the Russian 58th field army managed to push back the entire Georgian offensive – and those troops are only a part of but one of nine field armies of Russia, not counting numerous artillery, motor 18 Civil.ge 04/08/08: http://www.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=17521 19 Svante E. Cornell, Fariz Ismailzade, 2005, The Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline: Oil Window to the West 10
  11. 11. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ rifle, tank regiments, and so on). Invading South Ossetia with the hopes of integrating the territory with military might was and is a hopeless feat. Therefore, it is reasonable to assume Saakashvilis was motivated by other reasons where Georgia could actually “win” – i.e. a fast track to NATO membership. From this line of reasoning, one might argue that the independent variable if you will, was the destabilizing influence of NATO expansion in Eurasia. This line of reasoning seems sound at first glance, but as Drezner points out, the NATO expansion in the Baltic has actually moderated their behavior towards Russia.20 The same should hold true in the case of Georgia as well. We have to find our answer somewhere else. According to the offensive realist paradigm as expressed by Mearsheimer, offensive realist stick to a system level due to the assumption of state rationality. “Rationality” is at offensive realisms core. He adds that the only rational behavior of states is aggressiveness.21 But it is a statement devoid of content, it becomes almost a tautology: If a state can gain something (material, land, good will, or whatever they value) by being aggressive it goes without saying it a rational behavior. Conversely, if a state can reach whatever goals they have by being non- aggressive, it is likewise rational. In the case of Georgia, the assumption of aggressiveness does holds true due to Saakashvilis foreign policy goals and his assumptions of a Russian and Western response. But they are not system level factors, they are sub-systemic, dependent on the integral parts of Georgian foreign policy. What is rational is dependent on the specific situation. Briefly recapitulating the theory of a positivist methodology, the offensive realist paradigm does seem to add up on several accounts in the case of Georgia (uncertainty, anarchy, and so on). It is thus to a degree an accurate description, but does it has a predictive power? No realist scholar to my knowledge warned of an imminent war during 2008, probably for the reason that it was not possible of predicting a conflict simply on system level premises, as explained in detail above. We simply cannot determine what is a rational Georgian behavior from that level of abstraction. To conclude, it is not possible to find the answer to The South Ossetian War by only using the Offensive Realist “checklist”. We can check several of the boxes next to Georgias 20 Drezner, Daniel D., NATO, Russia and Realism: http://drezner.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2008/08/13/nato_russia_and_realism 21 Conversations in International Relations: Interview with John J. Mearsheimer (Part I) 11
  12. 12. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ name, as a description of Georgias specific situation and outlook on international relations it offers some guidance, but the hallmark of a good theory in the positivist methodology of Friedman is its predictive power. Offensive Realism fails in both that regard and by it’s own standard by seeking explanations of state behavior strictly on a system level. A rational Georgian behavior would be something else entirely if they had other foreign policy goals than a NATO membership. Litterature Antonenko, Oksana, 2008, ”A War with No Winners” in Survival 50:5,23 — 36 Caplan, Bryan, 2007, Myth of the Rational Voter. Princeton: Princeton University Press Conversations in International Relations: Interview with John J. Mearsheimer (Part I) Cornell, Svante E. & Ismailzade, Fariz, 2005, The Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan Pipeline: Oil Window to the West for Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program. John Hopkins University & Uppsala University Friedman, Milton, 1966, Essays in Positive Economics. Chicago: Chicago University Press Goldstone, Jack A., 1998, ”Initial Conditions, General Laws, Path Dependence, and Explanation in Historical Sociology” in American Journal of Sociology 104(3) Ma, Shun-Yun, 2007, Political Science at the Edge of Chaos? in International Political Science Review 2007: 28, 57 Mamuka Areshidze, "Current Economic Causes of Conflict in Georgia" for UK Department for International Development Waltz, Kenneth, 1979, Theory of International Politics Waltz, Kenneth, 2001, Man, the State and War 12
  13. 13. Security Policy Analysis: Eurasia Oscar Sundevall Spring 2009 Final paper ______________________________________________________________________________ Websites BBC 08/09/2008: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7550804.stm Civil.ge 04/08/08: http://www.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=17521 Der Spiegel 08/25/2008: http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,574812-3,00.html Drezner, Daniel D., NATO, Russia and Realism: http://drezner.foreignpolicy.com/posts/2008/08/13/nato_russia_and_realism New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/16/world/europe/16georgia.html&OQ=_rQ3D3Q26pagewante dQ3D3Q26refQ3Dworld&OP=2d9bda95Q2F)2Q51()Q2AQ7B_OpQ7BQ7BQ3AI)Ioo0)oB)8K) 2Q7BpxQ2A)Q51Q3BpQ7BXQ51)8KsQ51Q7BpsZmhYQ3AHx Russia Today 11/28/08: http://www.russiatoday.com/Top_News/2008-11- 28/Russia_to_spend_US_400_million_on_military_bases_in_Abkhazia_and_South_Ossetia_.ht ml Times Online 11/08/08: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/europe/article4498709.ece The Washington Post 08/18/08: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp- dyn/content/article/2008/08/17/AR2008081700294.html 13

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