A Brief History
On August 13, 2008, the military forces of Russia took over the Georgian city of Gori following a Russian war of aggression against its smaller neighbor and former Soviet Socialist Republic, during the Russo-Georgian War between August 1 and August 12 of 2008.
Russia had previously waged war on Georgia during another Soviet-Georgian War, this time an invasion during 1921. We say “Soviet” because at that time Russia was the leading Republic in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. An expansionist invasion, the Soviets, or Russians if you will, sought to expand the territory of the USSR which is exactly what they did, adding Georgia to the “Union.”
During the 2008 war, the Georgians lost 169 killed and nearly 1000 wounded, while the Russians lost only 67 killed and 283 wounded. This time around the Russian goal was to more or less annex the Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions of Georgia, which they unilaterally did by recognizing the “independence” of those 2 regions and occupying them with Russian military forces contrary to the terms of the cease fire and in the face of international disapproval.
The 2008 Russian land grab in Georgia was the first time since the 1991 dissolution of the USSR that Russia had invaded a sovereign state, but as we see in 2022 with Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, it would not be the last.
Question for students (and subscribers): Was the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008 or Ukraine in 2022 justified? Please let us know in the comments section below this article.
Your readership is much appreciated!
For more information, please see…
Anderson, Soren. Can war be just?: A Just War Analysis of the Russo-Georgian War 2008. GRIN Verlag, 2010.
Asmus, Ronald. A Little War That Shook the World: Georgia, Russia, and the Future of the West. St. Martin’s Press, 2010.
The featured image in this article, a map by Andrei nacu at English Wikipedia of the Russo-Georgian War, is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported, 2.5 Generic, 2.0 Generic and 1.0 Generic license.
You can also watch video versions of this article on YouTube.