Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2008

The Moment: Georgia

Reluctantly, almost insolently, on Aug. 16, Russia said it would withdraw its tanks and troops from the parts of Georgia it had overrun so swiftly just a few days before. Under the cease-fire agreement, Russian columns are expected to pull back behind preconflict lines of control. But amid reports of further incursions into Georgia, Russia is taking its own sweet time in complying. With tanks still rumbling along roads lined with ruins, the status quo in this part of the Caucasus is gone for good, crushed by the force of arms.

The human and physical damage is daunting...