The Editors on Russia & Georgia on National Review Online: "Almost none of the officials in the South Ossetian government are locals. Most are high-ranking former KGB officials from other parts of Russia. But South Ossetia provides them with a safe haven in which they can launder money, run smuggling operations, traffic in women, divert official funds into their pockets, and wage small but useful wars. Those wars are the second function: They help to destabilize independent states, especially pro-Western states such as Georgia, already weakened by division. South Ossetian “forces” have been bombing Georgian villages at irregular intervals for years, but recently more intensively."