Over the past several days, the American media has been relentlessly portraying the Russians as the bad guy in the South Ossetia conflict.
But are the Russians right? Are the Georgians the ones who are really wrong?
When the USSR originally disbanded, South Ossetia and Abkhasia voted to stay with Russia, not Georgia. The voter turnout was around 95% and about 99% of those voters elected to stay with Russia. The United States has tried to undermine that democratic choice ever since then.
We must keep in mind that in South Ossetia and Abkhazia, Russian troops are very popular. They are seen as the protectors. In fact, Vladimir Putin's picture is more widely displayed than that of the South Ossetian president. The Russians are seen as the only hope of protectoring against a repeat of the ethnic cleansing the Georgians tried before.
Back in 1992, the Western world backed Eduard Shevardnadze's attempts to reassert Georgia's control over South Ossetia and Abkhazia. That war was a disaster for Georgia. It left over 300,000 refugees "cleansed" from South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and for Ossetians and Abkhazians their mistreatment by Georgian troops is a very bitter memory.
On Thursday night and into Friday morning, Georgia was the first one to attack. They killed Russian peacemakers and purposely targeted civilians in South Ossetia.
But have we heard this on the news?
No, and Russia is quite upset about this media bias:
And contrary to Western media reports, Russian peacekeepers in South Ossetia said on Sunday that Georgian forces remain in the area, and are shelling apartment blocks in the capital of South Ossetia.
Vladimir Putin said this yesterday about Georgia's actions : "This is full-scale genocide... They have completely lost their minds."
Posted below is a video which provides some perspective on this war. An American man living in South Ossetia says that U.S. and Georgian leaders are responsible for the violence that has killed 2,000 people there. This video has some stunning footage of what is really going on: