Saakashvili: threat of Russian aggression persists

11.jpgRussia has failed to achieve its major goals in Georgia and therefore the threat of Russian aggression still persists, President Saakashvili said on October 2 at a meeting with the command of the Georgian armed forces.

He said that Georgia did not want the war and “we had no plans to carry out such defensive operations especially in Tskhinvali and in South Ossetia.”


“But the enemy supposed that – after the embargo did not work, after provocations did not work, after internal destabilization did not work – it would be impossible to achieve its two major goals – to remove the present authorities of Georgia and to control the oil pipelines,” Saakashvili said.


“But everybody should remember that they failed to fulfill these two tasks. They failed to overthrow the Georgian government and they failed to take control of the oil pipelines,” he continued. “Therefore, everybody should understand that the danger still persists and at any moment the aggressor may launch new attacks, new aggression.”


Saakashvili also said that it was necessary to analyze “the unique” experience gained during the hostilities, as well as to reveal the weak and strong sides of the Georgian armed forces.


He said that the Georgian artillery obviously prevailed over the enemy and aviation also worked well.


President Saakashvili also emphasized the weaknesses of the armed forces, listing bad management and communications and flaws in the training of officers among them. “The reserve forces also had a serious failure,” he added.


“We should revise this [reservist] system, as well as the call-up system,” Saakashvili said.


He also said that staff changes had been made in the armed forces in accordance with good performances during the war.


“Our army has demonstrated more than enough training, dedication and professionalism,” he said. “However, 10 fold more is needed.”


The president said the armed forces would be developed. 

“We do not plan to purchase new arms in the near future. We will spend most of our money on economic development; but we will also continue to train servicemen and improve their social conditions,” he said.


He also called on the armed forces to cooperate with the temporary parliamentary commission on the August events.


Saakashvili claimed again that Russia had intended to take control of Tbilisi in August, but “at the last moment,” after the world had “woke[n] up,” the Russian leadership retreated. He said that the August 12 rally outside Parliament had played a part in this.


The president said Russia had suffered a great defeat in the August war. “According to their own data, 2,000 Russian soldiers were killed, 17 aircraft downed and other military hardware damaged,” he said.

Source: Agencies

Kavkaz Center

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