These have become tumultuous times indeed following the invasion of Russian troops into Georgia. The situation seems to have gone from bad to worse and it does not look as if it will improve anytime soon. Russian officials have decided to cut their ties with NATO forces over criticisms by the NATO foreign ministers that Russia is not pulling its forces out of the region of Georgia in a timely manner.
NATO was intended to be a body of European Nations that were to deal with the Russian threat after World War II. However, over a period of times and after the wall fell in Berlin, Russia began working with NATO forces in joint military exercises. Nevertheless, there had always been uneasiness about the NATO, Russian alliance and over time some had suspected that such a partnership could certainly not last.
There have been a few instances in the not so distant past where Russia has flexed its muscle and the NATO nations had backed down for fear of all out war with the powerful nation. Even the United States on several occasions have made concessions to the big bad bear in order to placate Moscow. There are two thoughts on the subject as to why the US would give in to Russian demands or suggestions, and they are that the US was afraid that Russian would indeed start all out war and destabilize the world.
The other possibility was to bring the Russian nation into a false sense of power and control while the US was free to move into territories and ostensibly gain a strategic advantage over Russia. As I look at the chess pieces laid out on the board, I have come to the belief that the latter is the case and the Bear has been lulled into a false sense of security over the past passiveness of the European nation as well as the United States. However, we see that end of passivity coming to an end and now Russia is being given ultimatums and Moscow does not like that. Regardless, Russia is surrounded by nations that are not in favor of its quest for world domination, and while individually they have little power to fight against the bear. Together, they would be a formidable force in a war against Moscow.
It is quite possible that Moscow is being lured into provocations because the time is right to keep Moscow from gaining more power in the world. We have seen Russia in recent years start to become a large player in world politics as well as economy and if it is allowed to grow unchecked then we may just see Russia become its former self once more and that does not bode well for the world. In my opinion, this is a dangerous game that we all play and it certainly can end badly if Russia becomes so enraged that it looses its ability to reason. However, one can only wonder by the actions of the United States if that is not exactly what the Bush administration wants.
One thing is certain, Russia has a lot of pride and it is not likely that they will back down or give in to the demands of nations that it feels are inferior to it. There are a group in charge of the Russian infrastructure that long for the old glory days of mother Russian and its ominous visage which shadowed over the planet and had the people of the world fearful of its nuclear arsenal. These are the people that are working diligently to bring back that former glory and they will do anything they have to in order to achieve those ends.