A nice moment, but much nicer still is who’s on stage with him here. Recognize the guy over his left shoulder? There are, I believe, five presidents of Russian satellite states on stage there — Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia — although Yushchenko’s the only one I know on sight.

McCain himself is calling for bipartisanship with Obama on the war, but it looks like endgame is near. Both sides have tentatively agreed to Sarkozy’s truce plan, but Georgia’s still objecting to some of the Russian demands. One of those demands, according to the Telegraph, is to make South Ossetia and Abkhazia a “buffer zone” from which all Georgian troops would be excluded, meaning the two areas would be de facto annexed by Moscow. Quote:

Observers believe Mr Saakashvili’s decision to move into South Ossetia last week followed about two weeks of provocation by Russian forces and their client militias. “Russia wanted to manoeuvre Saakashvili into a situation where he would be seen to be making the first move and then provide a pretext for Russian action,” said an observer.

Hence the amazing speed of Russia’s mobilization. Exit question: If the excursion into Georgia was to teach their military a lesson, how do we explain this?