Barack Obama and the Democrats are heading towards trouble in November because of a new cold war with the Russians triggered largely by a top John McCain adviser and the same neoconservative clique who fabricated evidence to lobby for the Iraq war.
This is not a conspiracy theory but a conspiracy fact, stated as boldly as possible before it is too late.
Because they are still mired in what Obama himself calls “old thinking,” the Democratic hierarchy and the mainstream media will have to be challenged by the faithful and clear-headed rank-and-file and the blogosphere to recognize the Georgia Conspiracy.
Here are the short-term essentials:
• After border skirmishes similar to the 1964 Tonkin Gulf affair, on August 8, Georgia’s President Mikheil Saakashvili invaded the autonomous breakaway region of South Ossetia with his US-trained army. The Russians responded with massive force, quickly routing Saakashvili’s forces.
• McCain has traveled to Georgia, nominated his close friend Saakashlivi for a Nobel Prize in 2005, and was the first American leader to blast Russia last April, when Vladimir Putin issued a sharp warning against NATO membership for Georgia and the Ukraine, supported by the United States.
• The Bush Administration was divided along familiar lines, with the foreign policy “realists” around Condoleezza Rice opposite the pro-Georgia hawks centered in Dick Cheney’s office and allied with McCain–enthusiasts for spreading “democracy” from Iraq to the Russian border. The Cheney/neoconservative side prevailed, as they did with Chalabi in Iraq.
• Randy Scheunemann, McCain’s foreign policy adviser, was a registered foreign agent for Saakashlivi’s government from at least 2004, when Saakashvili came to power, until May 15, 2008, when he technically severed his ties to Orion Strategies, his lobbying firm. At that point, Orion had earned at least $800,000 in lobbying fees from Georgia.
• Saakashvili, with Scheuneman advising him, campaigned on a platform of taking back South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
•Schuenemann was Georgia’s lobbyist when Saakashvili sent troops to retake two separatist enclaves, Ajaria in 2004 and the upper Kodori Gorge in Abhkazia in 2006, over strong Russian objections.
• Saakashvili tarnished his democratic credentials by sending club-wielding riot police against unarmed demonstrators protesting his abrupt purging of the police, civil servants and universities in 2007, a replay of Paul Bremer’s decision to privatize Iraq in 2003.
Until now Scheunemann has been less visible but no less important than any of the top neoconservatives who drove America into Iraq and now are lobbying for a new cold war and a McCain presidency.
He was the full-time executive director of the Committee for the Liberation of Iraq. He helped draft the 1998 Iraq Liberation Act, which authorized $98 million for the “Iraq lobby” led by Ahmad Chalabi, which disseminated bogus intelligence in the lead-up to war. He also worked for Donald Rumsfeld as a consultant on Iraq. He joined the board of the Project for the New American Century.