„Silence is golden“ is the moto of the governement of Serbia took when it comes to the situation in the Caucasus. Unlike some previous cases, this reaction, or rather, the lack thereof, at least makes some sense. South Ossetia and Abkhazia are , according to international law, parts of Georgia. On the other hand, Russia is Serbia’s primary diplomatic backer over Kosovo and Metohija. Still, there was something we could have said...
How many people, aside from political junkies, knew about the situation in Georgia? I doubt it was on the mind of the general public, primarily because the situation was under control of the peace-keeping forces which consisted of Ossetian, Russian and Georgian soldiers(something conveniantly overlooked by western media) whose presence was sanctioned via an international treaty signed by Georgia, it’s provinces and Russia(another fact hidden from the public). At the same time, negotiations were held, some times oh a higher, sometimes on a lower level. In other words, a prototype of a frozen conflict.
So why did this conflict go from „frozen“ to „boiled over“? Lately we have been hearing western leaders demanding the preservation of Georgia’s teritorial integrity, but unlike previous proclamations, this one was in a hushed tone, as if even those saying the words did not believe it. As soon as the soveregnity and integrity slogans began being tossed around by the US and the EU, the Serbian governement should have seized the opportunity and reminded the latest palladins of international law that they were obliged to respect the integrity of Serbia as well, that their theory of a „unique case“ has been blown out of the water and that another „South Ossetia“ is to come, as inevitably as sunrise. And they would not have to endorse anybody’s position in the conflict.
But that would annoy their sponsors in Washington and Brussels, so it was out of the question, as was poking the Russians in the eye. So they just pretend nothing is happening.