Forbes magazine reports:
I was in Tbilisi recently to report on the Russian anschluss into Georgia. You must not expect me to be impartial on the matter. I have visited Georgia four times in as many years and witnessed the country’s self-transformation after its Rose Revolution. It went from two centuries of asphyxiating “protection” by Russia, followed by a post-Soviet decade of mafiotic corruption, to a kind of light unto nations under its young president, Mikheil Saakashvili. One hesitates to cite Wordsworth’s rather breathless and famously wrongheaded lines on the French Revolution–“Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive/But to be young was very heaven”–but in Tbilisi they seemed precisely right.
Reader “Simona” has translated the following two reports from the Russian media regarding the harrassment of journalists attempting to report on the Russian invasion of Georgia.
From Gazeta.ru: Russian soldiers detained Polish news crew near Gori
A patrol of the Russian and Ingushetian military detained members of a Polish public television crew with their Georgian guide near Karaleti village, which lies between the South Ossetian capital Tskhinvali and the Georgian city of Gori, said on Monday the Polish Television. All the crew’s equipment was confiscated, including cameras and mobile phones. The detainees were driven off to an undisclosed destination, said the report. The website of the Polish television also reports that the local authorities are considering the journalists as “prisoners of war”.
From Grani.ru: Russian soldiers detained Georgian journalists
Russian soldiers in the village of Tsaishi detained Giga Kilasonia, a cameraman of the Obshchestvenny Veshchatel television, and Rustavi-2 television reporter Emma Gogokia, who were trying to film illegal Russian military checkpoints in Tsaishi, gazeta.ru reports, citing its Tbilisi correspondent. According to the report “While the journalists were filming, three armoured personnel carriers arrived, and the Russian soldiers ordered them to stop filming. They took away the keys of the cameraman’s car, and tried to force the journalists into one of the armoured personnel carriers. When the journalists refused, the soldiers roughed them up. Forty minutes later, representatives of the UN arrived and the journalists were released after their intervention.”
Robert Amsterdam has video on the confrontation.
Watch out, Mr. Hankey — Vladimir Putin knows where you live! He has a plunger and he’s not afraid to use it!