10 August 2008
First naval engagement in S. Ossetia Conflict
BBC World is reporting that four Georgian missile boats tried to mount an attack on the Russian Black Sea Naval squadron that is patrolling the waters off Abkhazia. The Russians were on the ball and sank one of the attackers, with the other three managing to escape. No hits were scored on the Russian ships.
More reports are coming in of the damage to Tskhinvali, the South Ossetian capital. Soon the TV cameras will be allowed in and we shall be able to see if the Russian version of events, which states that the city has been pretty much destroyed, are confirmed. So far the Russians have been telling more of the truth than the Georgians, so this writer confidently predicts that Tskhinvali will turn out to look pretty battered indeed.
Given what the Georgians have done on the ground and now at sea, it would be a foolish Russian commander who would take their word for anything. Russia needs to push on and force the Georgians to accept whatever terms Moscow is pleased to offer.