On the ‘Bosnian Model’ for Georgia

David Chandler argues against the Bosnia model for Georgia:

[T]he internationalisation of South Ossetia and Abkhazia is a real possibility. It appears that, as I have previously argued on spiked, Russia’s recognition of the republics was an attempt not to strengthen control over these territories but to distance the Kremlin from annexationist claims (see Russia’s first ‘Western-style’ war, by David Chandler). The act of recognition seems to have been motivated by the desire to distance Moscow from the consequences of military intervention and the destabilising assumption that Russia would militarily threaten the annexation of other territories with separatist Russian claims.

Internationalising the question of the sovereign status of South Ossetia and Abkhazia would enable Russia to put responsibility in the hands of international institutions, and thereby pass the buck for maintaining the divide between North and South Ossetia and for undermining Georgia’s territorial claims, while, of course, still being a decisive influence in the region. It is possible, therefore, that we may see some movement towards the ‘Bosnian model’ in the Caucasus, with the EU and international institutions being drawn into the Georgia-Russia stand off.

[H/t: Alex Cooley]