Tuesday, February 19, 2008
Fear And Trembling In The Balkans
As many foreign policy experts expected, the most feared repercussion from Kosovo's declaration of independence has in fact materialized: the breakaway Moldavian republic of Transdnestr has declared that it will seek international recognition as an independent state. No word yet on whether an emergency session of the Security Council will be called.
All kidding aside, though, the development does lend weight to Russian Deputy Prime Minister Sergei Ivanov's claims that Kosovo will:
...open a Pandora' Box of declarations of independence as de facto independent republics across the world asked themselves the question, "How are we any different?"
Meanwhile, another Russian lawmaker, cautioned against Russia using two Georgian breakaway republics as payback for Kosovo:
"We should understand that by recognizing the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia we could trigger a serious crisis in the CIS," Konstantin Kosachyov, head of the International Affairs Committee at the State Duma, Russia's lower house of parliament, said, adding that over half of all ex-Soviet states "have their own Kosovo and Abkhazia."
Unfortunately, we're living in an age that seems to be characterized by little concern for triggering serious crises.