EDITORIAL: Abkhazia and Kazakhstan jam a Finger into Russia’s Eye

EDITORIAL

Abhkazia and Kazakhstan jam a Finger into Russia’s Eye

Yet more proof of the fundamental unraveling of the Putin regime came last week with the announcement that Kazakhstan had completed its 2,000-mile-long gas pipeline directly to China via Uzbekistan, bypassing Russia.  Not only will the Kazakh line carry its own national gas production, but it will also funnel the massive production of Turkmenistan into China as well.  And the whole thing was paid for by China.  So much for the bizarre notion that China and Russia are somehow allies against the West!

And that wasn’t all.  In presidential elections in Abkhazia, voters emphatically rejected the pro-Russian candidate in favor of a strong nationalist who promises to make Abkhazia a truly independent country, free of Russian influence. Stunned by the devastating loss of its hand-picked candidate, the Kremlin could not even muster the good grace to congratulate the winner, and had it’s puppet calling for a challenge to the tabulation.

The pipeline is unmistakable visual proof that Russia’s foreign policy in Central Asia is a total failure, that the major nations there are turning their backs to Russia and looking towards Asia and the West for their future security.  The total inability of the Putin regime to maintain productive working relationships with its nearest neighbors, to say nothing of actual friendship or alliance, is the hallmark of Putin’s time in office.

The ultimate expression of this failure, of course, was Putin’s outrageous effort at imperial conquest in Georgia.  The propaganda spewed out by the Kremlin since then, that Abkhazia adores Russia and wants to be its bestest buddy, is now laid bare for all to see.  In fact, Abkhazia has no more love for Russia than Czechoslovakia or Afghanistan had for the USSR.

Only two rogue nations, Venezuela and Nicaragua, have recognized Russia’s conquest of Abkhazia from tiny Georgia.   All the major nations of the world have condemned Russia’s actions, and now Russia’s faces a Hobson’s choice:  If more nations recognize Abkhazia, it will slip from Russia’s sphere of influence into theirs. If they don’t, Russia will look more and more like a rogue nation itself. Either way, Russia will see its power and ability to affect the course of global events wane and dissipate, until Russia simply no longer matters at all.

Putin’s act of wanton imperialist aggression is the ultimate embodiment of his failed regime, which has chosen cold war over the interests of the people of Russia just as the USSR did before him. That’s no surprise of course, since Putin himself is a proud KGB spy and a relic of that failed past.

18 responses to “EDITORIAL: Abkhazia and Kazakhstan jam a Finger into Russia’s Eye

  1. From LR’s Abkhazia link:

    Separatist leader Sergei Bagapsh has won reelection by a crushing margin in rebel Abkhazia in a vote considered illegitimate by most of the world but hailed by Russia, officials said Sunday.
    The rebel region’s election commission, citing the first official results, said Bagapsh had taken 59.4 percent of Saturday’s vote against 15.4 percent for his main challenger Raul Khajimba…
    Speaking at a news conference, Bagapsh promised to strengthen his region’s ties to Moscow no matter what the rest of the world might think.
    “We have chosen our path, whether the United States likes it or not,” he said. “Abkhazia will never again be part of Georgia.”

    When reality doesn’t go LR’s way, she makes it up just like in the old USSR! And like the USSR, she will inevitably go into oblivion, taking down the rest of the Russophobe and Georgian imperialist cabal with her.

    LA RUSSOPHOBE RESPONDS

    Your illiteracy is hysterically funny! We never said Abkhazia wants to rejoin Georgia we said IT DOESN’T WANT TO JOIN RUSSIA. That’s what “independence” means, you baboon. The Kremlin ACTIVELY SUPPORTED THE LOSER in this race. Get it, ape?

    • Imperialist Georgia?

      More like imperialist Apsua in Abkhazia.

      Have you ever heard of Gali you retard?

      40,000 Georgians (the last remenants of over 250,000 Georgians who lived in Abkhazia making up 49% to 51% of the population while the separatist Apsu made up only 17%).

      These people were not allowed to vote in the recent elections, and have had their language banned from schools in the repulsive racist little statelet that is Abkhazia.

      The reason that the rest of the world refuses to recognise Abkhazia is due to its horrific crimes against humanity both in the early 90’s (Gagra massacre, Sukhumi massacrs, ethnic cleansing of the largest ethnic group in the province (Georgians) by Apsu separatists etc) and today, banning of Georgian language from schools in Gali (which is 98% Georgian populated by the way).

      Get an education retard boy.

  2. No mater what type of a puppet government the people elect in Abkhazia, whether pro or anti Russia should be of no consequence to the international community, this is and will remain sovereign Georgian territory and we should not change our non recognition stance.

    The Russians are very cunning; it would not surprise me if they engineer a situation where the leadership in Abkhazia appear more pro western on the surface, in an attempt to make this regime more palatable. Russia has this tiny “slither” of a state in its clutches they dance to Russia’s tune, have no doubt about that. This “slither” state can not survive without Russian patronage, they like their masters are not to be trusted.

  3. Sorry, but I do believe that La Russophobe is wrong on this. Certainly, they happened, and it will sting Putin’s pride for a bit, but I believe the consequences are overstated.

    For one, Abkhazia can hardly go ANYWHERE. Its continued existance as it is is ensured by vast numbers of Russian forces on its sail with a few local militias. Many of its citizens are in fact Russian citizens. It won’t leave Putin’s umbrella because It CANNOT without suffering an immediate invasion and re-apsorbtion into Georgia. Whatever nameplate gets put in there is irrelevant: at the end of the day, Putin still rules the roost.

    And I do believe that reports of the death of the Sino-Russian alliance are exagerrated. Certainly, there is friction and jockying for supremacy, but in the UN and on other issues, the Kremlin and the Red Court are rather clsoely alligned. I believe this is just China trying to cement its position as the senior member of that alliance at the expense of Putin’s pretentions. Certainly, it won’t go over well, but I doubt it has rendered the entire alliance a dead letter.

  4. Speaking Russian: “Marazm krepchal.”
    Bypassing Russia :) Just look at the map: building a pipeline from Central Asia to China across Russia would be a crazy idea. Apparently, the governments of Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and China don’t suffer from mental disorders – in contrast to the author of the post.

    • FYI, the author of the post is merely quoting reporting from one of the world’s most powerful and respected newspapers, the New York Times. Are they mentally deranged as well? How long have you believed that everyone who disagrees with YOU is mentally sick? Would you like to lock all of us up in a neo-Soviet psycho ward?

      Did you even read this post and its links before commenting?

      Do you REALLY think it’s good for Russia that Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan supply gas directly to China? Did you think at all before you spewed our your silly nonsense? CAN you think?

      • Just look at the map.

        • Just read the New York Times.

          Or, is it impossible YOU could be wrong?

          • From the LR list of Related Articles:

            http://www.nytimes.com/2009/12/15/world/asia/15pipeline.html

            Indeed, read the New York Times. And look at the map.

            • Now Alina, you are apparently a Russophile and therefore somewhat limited in your mental abilities.

              Prior to this pipeline being built, all of the gas exports from Turkmenistan were forced to go through Russia.

              Now the central asian republics have one NON RUSSIAN outlet to sell gas to China, and it seems they will soon have another (NABUCCO) to the west.

              Considering that a very large percentage of gas (possibly the majority) that Russia (and in particular Gazprom) sell to the EU is not Russian at all, but is actually from the central Asian republics, this is a major blow to Russian interests, and a natural result of the neo fascist foreign policy that Putin and his puppet Medvedev have enacted.

  5. Andrew, could you please read the LR post?

    “Yet more proof of the fundamental unraveling of the Putin regime came last week with the announcement that Kazakhstan had completed its 2,000-mile-long gas pipeline directly to China via Uzbekistan, bypassing Russia.”, etc.

    Should I explain you that it is only natural that China is interested in buying Central Asian natural gas? Why should the Central Asian gas-rich nations reject a profitable China-funded project? If China and those nations agree on the project, why should they lay a pipeline across Russia? If something is simply natural – commercialy and geographically – where is a blow to Putin’s regime?

    As for Russia’s interests, read the NYT story. The author of the post, this is LR, claims that she was “quoting reporting from one of the world’s most powerful and respected newspapers, the New York Times” (see one of her comments above).

    Let’s look as to what NYT says:

    “Though helpful to energy-parched China, the project siphons potential supplies from the long-delayed pipeline that the European Union would like to see built from Turkey to Central Europe.”

    The end of the NYT story:

    “Russia’s paramount goal is to prevent the West from breaking a monopoly on natural gas pipelines from Asia to Europe, which is the core of Gazprom’s business. The eastbound Chinese pipeline, in contrast, does not undercut an existing Russian export market, because Russia sells no pipeline gas to China now.”

    Thus, LR did not understand absolutely what was said in NYT. By the way, amazingly, by the time when I am writing this comment, the reference to NYT disappeared (!) from the LR list of Related Articles. So, a sort of mental desease is not LR’s sole problem. She seems to be also a little crook. (Now she will rush to restore the reference to NYT in the list).

    • More likely she will just delete your (and this) comment.

    • Actually the NYT article is quite wrong about the gas being “siphoned off” from supplies that could fill NABUCCO.

      NABUCCO will be filled from off shore reserves in the Caspian.

      Try reading this article for a more balanced view.

      “New Turkmen-China Pipeline Breaks Russia’s Hold Over Central Asian Gas

      Last updated (GMT/UTC): 14.12.2009 11:53
      By Bruce Pannier
      With one flick of a switch today, Russia’s long-standing dominance and near monopoly over Central Asian natural-gas exports officially came to an end.

      The massive Turkmenistan-China pipeline, which will carry natural gas from eastern Turkmenistan through Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan into China’s northwestern Xinjiang region, went on line today during an inauguration ceremony attended by regional leaders. It marks the first time in more than a decade that a pipeline has been constructed to pump gas out of the region, and the biggest-ever effort to export Central Asian gas without using Russian routes.

      The ceremony in Samandepe, the starting point of the 1,833-kilometer pipeline that originates in Turkmenistan’s gas-rich but previously untapped east, took place just over three years after the China-funded project was agreed upon.

      Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov called the launch of the new pipeline “a new chronicle in the relations of our countries” that “will stand as a golden page” in their history.

      Joining the Turkmen president to witness the event were the presidents of China, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan — Hu Jintao, Nursultan Nazarbaev, and Islam Karimov, respectively — whose countries are all involved in the project.

      ‘Quite A Bit Bigger’

      Jennifer DeLay, editor of “FSU Oil And Gas Monitor,” a weekly publication from the Scotland-based Newsbase Group, says the significance of the new route rests primarily in the fact that it is the first high-volume export route opening up for Turkmenistan that does not go through Russia.

      DeLay notes that a gas pipeline connecting Turkmenistan to northern Iran was constructed in 1997. But she says its rather modest annual capacity of 8 billion cubic meters (bcm) of gas pales in comparison to the new route to China.

      “That’s still pretty small compared to the one they [Turkmenistan] have to Russia, which is handling upward of 50, 60, 70 bcm per year,” DeLay says. “The new pipeline to China is going to be handling 30 to 40 billion cubic meters a year, and that’s quite a bit bigger than 8 [billion bcm].”

      According to plan, the Turkmenistan-China pipeline’s full capacity of 40 bcm should be achieved by 2012, but Turkmenistan and China have already signed preliminary agreements to add another 10 bcm eventually.

      Russian energy giant Gazprom is contracted to purchase between 50 to 65 bcm annually from Turkmenistan, accounting for about 90 percent of the Central Asian country’s gas exports.

      But since an explosion along the pipeline connecting Turkmenistan to Russia in April, no gas has been flowing, stoking tensions between the two countries and leading Turkmenistan to speed up efforts to find alternative export avenues.

      The two sides are close to agreement on renewing supplies, but when the flow of gas does resume Gazprom’s share of Turkmen gas will have fallen to just over 50 percent as a result of the new China route and others expected to go on line soon. .

      A new pipeline to Iran, due to be launched later this month, will eventually send another 8 bcm to Iran — with plans to add 4 bcm more — to Iran, bringing the total slated for the Turkmenistan’s southern neighbor to 20 bcm.

      The Turkmenistan-China pipeline is also due to take some gas from Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan to China. Uzbekistan has already said it is contracted to provide 10 bcm to the project. A second section of the pipeline that will extend through Kazakhstan from north of the Aral Sea to China — the Beyneu-Bozoy-Kzylorda-Shymkent pipeline — will provide 10 bcm of Kazakh gas.

      During a visit to Kazakhstan on December 12 en route to Turkmenistan, Chinese President Hu attended the opening of the Kazakh-China spur of the pipeline and held discussions with Kazakh President Nazarbaev.

      In the Turkmen capital, Ashgabat, ahead of today’s ceremony, Hu said the new pipeline will benefit all countries in the region, and expressed China’s interest in continued cooperation with Central Asian states in the development and transportation of energy resources.

      ‘So Much The Better’

      DeLay of “FSU Oil And Gas Monitor” explains that China has a keen interest in diversifying its energy sources.

      “China is looking, at this point, to gasify as much of its economy as possible,” she says. “To date it’s dependent mostly on coal, which is of course a much dirtier burning fuel, and they’re looking to switch over to gas. At present, gas still accounts for a fairly low share of total energy consumption, I believe it may still be less than 10 percent.

      “So at the moment they’re looking for gas from pretty much any source they can get it, and if they can get through a secure overland pipeline, so much the better.”

      DeLay says the new Turkmenistan-China route fits the bill.

      “One of the big attractions of the pipeline from Central Asia is that it’s an overland route. A good amount of the gas that China has started buying lately has come from overseas in the form of LNG [liquefied natural gas], which has to be brought in by tankers,” DeLay says.

      “Sea transport has its own pitfalls; a lot of it has to go through the Straits of Malacca, which is infested with pirates, and there’s some other security concerns. The pipeline from Turkmenistan, by contrast, is going overland and is a little bit easier to predict and protect.”

      The opening of the new pipeline could also have a ripple effect, as Central Asia’s gas-exporting states consider offers to join projects leading west to Europe. The European Union-backed Nabucco gas pipeline aims to carry 31 bcm annually and would be nearly twice as long as the Turkmenistan-China pipeline.

      So far, however, Central Asian leaders have been hesitant to sign contracts to fill the Nabucco pipeline.

      That may be about to change.

      One of Nabucco’s shareholders, Germany’s RWE Dea, in July was awarded the rights to explore Turkmenistan’s offshore gas fields in the Caspian Sea. In October, the company opened a representative office in the Turkmen capital, Ashgabat.

      Observers see RWE’s activities as the first steps in securing Turkmen gas for Nabucco. And for Nabucco shareholders and supporters, the example of the new Turkmenistan-China going online demonstrates with certainty that it is possible to build a high-volume pipeline that avoids Russia.”

      http://www.rferl.org/content/TurkmenistanChina_Gas_Pipeline_To_Open/1903108.html

  6. “And that wasn’t all. In presidential elections in Abkhazia, voters emphatically rejected the pro-Russian candidate in favor of a strong nationalist who promises to make Abkhazia a truly independent country, free of Russian influence. Stunned by the devastating loss of its hand-picked candidate, the Kremlin could not even muster the good grace to congratulate the winner, and had it’s puppet calling for a challenge to the tabulation.”

    – The truth is BagaPSH, was as hand picked as XajimBA… (former KGB dude, Pukins friend) Sure, they would wanted to out Xajimba -guy there. But they OWN Abkhazia… 5 military occupation bases… and who are Abkhazians? 40.000 poor people who only make some money by selling the once Georgian property to Russians…

    The Russian “ambassador” to Abkhazia has stated while Russia has deployed more war ships at the Ochamchitra port near the occupation line…

    “This ships will protect the borders of Russia and our national interests”

    – I’m sorry, but when the “ambassador” says stuff like that about a neighboring territory… that’s self explanatory.

  7. Thanks, Andrew. You’ve said nothing to defend LR and her Editorial. Sure: when the chief ideologist is nutty and crooked, things are not easy.

  8. Turkey, Ukraine, Azerbaijan join EU condemnation of Abkhazia poll

    The EU “does not recognize the constitutional and legal framework within which these elections have taken place” and “continues to support Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty, as recognized by international law,” a statement issued in Brussels on Monday and re-released on Tuesday said.

    http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/299461,turkey-ukraine-azerbaijan-join-eu-condemnation-of-abkhazia-poll.html

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