Monday, Russia and the province of Abkhazia in Georgia signed a treaty that puts a Russian commander in charge of all security forces in Abkhazia. The treaty calls for the defense, security, law enforcement, border, customs, economic, and health care agencies of Russian-occupied Abkhazia to merge with those of Russia over the next three years. Many analysts think this is a step toward Russia taking over Abkhazia, just like it did when it invaded and took over Crimea earlier this year.
In 2008, Russia invaded Georgia and took control of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, two Georgian provinces. South Ossetia said last week that it is negotiating a new “comprehensive agreement on integration” with Russia. This will bring the relationship between the two countries to a “qualitatively new level,” showing that South Ossetia is on the same path as Abkhazia.
Russia and China are now the only two countries that use military force to take over land that belongs to other countries. This very dangerous situation could turn into a wider war at any time, just like what happened in the 1930s. Russia Today, Jamestown, and the AP
President Obama fired Chuck Hagel from his job as Secretary of Defense.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is a Republican, mainly because he is against abortion. However, he is far to the left of the political spectrum when it comes to defense issues. He and Obama both opposed the Iraq war when they were on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in the middle of the 2000s. Obama chose Chuck Hagel to be Secretary of Defense in January 2013 so that he could help him reach his goals of reducing the U.S. military’s power and footprint and managing the withdrawal from Afghanistan.
Almost all of Obama’s decisions about foreign policy have been bad, and these were no different. Obama had to send troops back into Iraq because of the rise of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (IS, ISIS, or ISIL). The situation has worsened several times in recent weeks. Obama put off ending the U.S. mission in Afghanistan until 2015 on Friday of last week.
People in the know have said that Hagel was fired for three reasons. The first reason is that Obama is using him as an excuse for his foreign policy failures.
The second reason is that Hagel disagreed with the President and indirectly criticised him. Obama called ISIS a “JVteam in Lakers uniforms” in January, where “JV” means “junior varsity.” But in August, Hagel said that ISIS was “an immediate threat to every interest we have, whether it’s in Iraq or anywhere else,” and that it was “as smart and well-funded as any group we’ve seen.”
The third reason given by experts is that Hagel wasn’t very good at running the military.
Regardless, Hagel’s replacement will have to deal with military and foreign policy in a mess. Investors’ Business Daily and NBC News
The Iran nuclear deal falls through, so there will be seven more months of talks.
John Kerry, the U.S. Secretary of State, has been saying for weeks that a deal to stop Iran from making nuclear weapons would be reached by Monday, the deadline he set for himself. Even on Sunday night, Kerry said that a deal was almost done. But it looks like he wasn’t telling the truth because on Monday, it was announced that the deal would be put off until June 2015.
Kerry wants to make a deal so the Obama administration can call it a success and end its string of foreign policy failures.