Global News Journal

Beyond the World news headlines

A year later and there is still no clear winner from the Georgia-Russia war


The debate still rages over which side came out of the August 7-12, 2008 war better.

It’s true that Russia crushed Georgia’s army when it stepped in to help South Ossetian rebels but its forceful reaction to the Georgian attempt to retake rebel held areas scared its European partners and isolated the country. Only Nicaragua followed Moscow and recognised both South Ossetia and another breakaway region Abkhazia as independent states after the war.

And despite an overwhelming military victory, the war also showed up technological and organisational deficiencies in Russia’s army.

For Georgia, the unsuccessful war dented its reputation as a reliable and steady ally for the West in the notoriously unstable South Caucasus. It also slowed President Mikheil Saakashvili’s NATO ambitions and undermined his popularity at home.