The formal process to accept Georgia as a member of NATO has begun partly because of Russia’s occupation of Georgia. British Foreign Minister David Miliband said Georgia has been give a “route map to membership…It’s an important signal but there is also important substance to it.” The British Foreign Secretary rejected the view of some European nations that the membership should be placed on hold and rethought in light of events in South Ossetia and Georgia. However, Miliband says NATO”is offering close cooperation with the Georgian government and the Georgian military. That means helping the Georgians build up their capacity.”
The bravado of leaders such as David Miliband sounds wonderful as a statement on the six o’clock news, but is he prepared to support having NATO troops meet Russian soldiers in combat? He insists “it’s right to see Georgian and Ukranian membership” although in so doing Russia will regard such efforts as a provocation and a threat to their security.
Russia struts its troops around Georgia and acts defiant while NATO reacts with its own show of force. Perhaps, it is time to end the political rhetoric demonstrations and return to the bargaining table in order to create a Europe in which no nation fears for its security. Step one would be putting a halt to building missile bases in Poland and working with Russian leaders to reassure them there is no intent to threaten their security. It is time for wise diplomacy to take over and angry words to cease.