August 11th, 2008
09:45 AM ET
10 years ago

McCain again condemns Russian military action

McCain condemned Russia's military actions in Georgia.

McCain condemned Russia's military actions in Georgia.

ERIE, Pennsylvania (CNN) - With his Democratic rival vacationing in Hawaii, John McCain used the political vacuum to polish his foreign policy credentials on Monday morning, issuing a lengthy statement to reporters condemning Russian military action in Georgia and calling for further diplomatic against the Kremlin.

“Russian President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin must understand the severe, long-term negative consequences that their government’s actions will have for Russia’s relationship with the U.S. and Europe,” he said.

Watch: McCain condemns Russian military

The presumptive Republican nominee said Americans should be concerned with the “remote, obscure” country because of its commitment to democracy as well as strategically important trade routes and an oil pipeline that flows through Tblisi. He also noted that Georgia was “one of the world’s first nations to adopt Christianity as an official religion.”

He accused Russia of trying to intimidate other neighbors like Ukraine who have sought to strengthen ties with the West.

McCain called on Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to travel to Europe and begin “high-level diplomacy” to support Georgian independence, and demanded that Russia call a cease-fire and withdraw all troops from Georgian territory. He urged the U.N. Security Council to condemn the violence, even with the threat of a Russian veto. Russia's actions, he said, must be submitted to "the court of world opinion."

In his remarks, McCain repeatedly mispronounced the name of Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili. The gaffe comes in the wake of several incidents last month when he referred to the Czech Republic as the nation of “Czechoslovakia,” which no longer exists.

The Arizona senator spoke with the Georgian president over the weekend about the situation in South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

Filed under: John McCain
soundoff (131 Responses)
  1. TerryDoRight

    Heads Up Everyone!

    In about two to three hours Obama will come out with an almost identical comment.

    “Russian President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin must understand the severe, long-term negative consequences that their government’s actions will have for Russia’s relationship with the U.S. and Europe,”

    McCain is absolutely right, no one in the world like a Bully and a Thug picking on weaker people. He is acting very presidential.

    August 11, 2008 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  2. merry

    Thank you Barbara.

    August 11, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  3. McCain Never Will Be Ready

    What foreign relations ability is McCain running on?? Just don't see any of it!

    August 11, 2008 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  4. Milton, Harrisburg, PA

    Given McCain's sense of Geography (e.g. Czechoslavakia and the "Pakistan-Iraq border), I'm surprised he didn't ask why the mayor of Atlanta didn't say anything about Russia invading.

    These pronouncements remind me of the the vacuously trite platitudes spewed by the pope–you know stuff like "killing people is bad. Stop it" while failing to ever state real and sometimes obvious solutions (in the case of the Catholic church, the mafia-like cover-ups of child molestation, and in this case, whether to push for Georgia admission into NATO).

    Hmm, can we open up a few more fronts to our wars?

    August 11, 2008 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  5. AL - West Palm Beach - FL

    Wait if this is not presumptive I don't know what is and that word does not mean what I thought it meant. Then again when will CNN stop being biased toward Obama.

    While it's true that he gets more coverage than McClueless, yet 73% of the coverage he gets is negative. This is so true that if that speech was given by Obama the title would have been somthing like... "Is Obama being presumtive for saying this: " That's different and yes negative.

    Come on... be fair and square to all sides... otherwise we might as well watch FIXed (not a typo) News and call it a day.

    August 11, 2008 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  6. anonymous

    You McCain hater/NOBAMA loser lovers will rue the day if that empty suited clown get elected! Mark my words.

    August 11, 2008 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  7. curly

    Obama is not even close to being qualified to handle situations like this. The US and the rest of the world must be able to stand up to aggretion like this and unit to stop it. With Obama as President, world aggration would go unchecked resulting in World War III which would eventully pull the US in with it.
    Only by stand strong in the face of world bullies like Russia, can world war III be prevented.

    Obama spells world doom.

    August 11, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  8. Nikki, Florida

    Interesting, I condemn U.S. military action into Iraq and Iran.

    Fix things at home first, McCain. Don't preach a standard to others that you can't hold yourself to.

    August 11, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  9. Travis

    Now this is right up McWar's alley....I'm sure he'll look tired over the

    next few days, staying up all night seeing how he can get America

    into the war.....check his depends I'm sure they're wet.

    August 11, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  10. Andrew

    Here he goes again war, war and more war. You would think at some point these people would get a little more innovative. It's not the mortgage crisis that is killing the economy it is constant war that only benefits the wealthy and robber barons of this country.

    August 11, 2008 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  11. jim hawkins

    Your to old school McCain......Same old same old !!!!

    August 11, 2008 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  12. rashid

    america better wake up we can't go to countrys that did nothing to us and use military power in the same sentence tell other world powers what they are doing is wrong we've been occupying other countries for years and now russia wants to and all mccain can offer is a nuclear war please mccain i know you conservatives like to say we liberals are on koolaide but you guys need to put the whisky down obama 08

    August 11, 2008 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  13. A Nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    John McCain is too old and too risky to be president and has no business running for office. He worked with the North Vietnamese while he was a prisoner, he abandoned the disabled mother of his children for a pill popping Barbi trophy wife, took money and favors from Keating, voted for the war in Iraq and drinks the same Kool-aid as the current moron in the White House.

    If McCain is elected say goodbye to Roe Vs Wade and a woman's right to choose and say hello to dropping bombs on Iran and World War III.

    John McCain is too risky and too Old!

    August 11, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  14. Bob

    So what! I'm surprised McSame didn't want to send troops in to help Georgia. Or country should stay out of this, because after all who are we to criticize when we invaded Iraq?

    August 11, 2008 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  15. al





    August 11, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  16. Griff

    "The Man. The Cause, and the Way! They don't come much better, and there is nobody who could fill his shoes today...

    August 11, 2008 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  17. Susan

    More from the War Monger....

    August 11, 2008 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  18. Shari, NY

    Mispronouncing words is nothing new in this camp. However, I would suggest that Mr. McCain consult the U.S. Government's factbook website for up to date country names. Also, he should be quizzed on where the very important oil conduit, Strait of Hormuz is.

    August 11, 2008 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  19. Thomas

    Well the only good news is that Georgia does not have any oil. It does have a big pipeline going through it though.

    But since Georgia does not have any oil, I am sure the United States will turn a blind eye to the suffering in Georgia and the Ossetia regon.

    August 11, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  20. Kurt C.

    While Obama tries to make back room deals with state leaders of other countries, McCain steps up and talks openly. I knew the McCain haters would be out.

    Lose the Zero,
    Vote for the Hero

    August 11, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  21. Gary of El Centro, Ca

    From what I have read on this, there is fault on both sides for the conflict. For McCain to pick out the Russians and start beating his chest about how wrong they are to invade another country is extremely hypocritical considering he had and has no problem with the USA doing the same thing. Seems like his comments do nothing but pour gas on an already hot situation. We don't need a man of his temperament in the White House.

    August 11, 2008 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  22. Jackie from Minneapolis

    Who cares – he's a loser.

    August 11, 2008 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  23. MM

    McCain is an idiot. The Georgia issue is much more complex then just telling Russia to "now, stop it or we'll...." Georgia gets some blame for the events that are happening over there right now. Plus McCain is making a tense situation worse - it is too soon for all the screaming about Georgia that he is doing now. First let's see what the Bush administration is going to be able to accomplish.

    August 11, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  24. ben

    Here is something you probably don't know. During the2nd world war, Russia was our allie, but they moved into Irak and took over our oil wells.
    The Stars and Stripes a military news paper said that although we could do nothing about it at the time, as soon as the war was over we would be involved with conflict with Russia. Exatly what happened. We accused them of trying to take over the world and the fear word Comunism became the mantra of the US govt. What does this mean? It means all wars are fought for money!!!!!!!!! Oil is the mothers milk of war! Study history and try to find a war that was not fought for money.

    August 11, 2008 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  25. Nando, Florida


    August 11, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
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