August 12th, 2008
03:52 PM ET
10 years ago

McCain: 'Today we are all Georgians'

YORK, Pennsylvania (CNN) - Although Russia has apparently agreed to cease military action in Georgia, John McCain accused Moscow Tuesday of continuing to attack, saying that “possibly thousands” of civilians have been wounded or killed.

“President Medvedev stated that he has halted the offensive,” McCain said, “but reports indicate Russian military forces have continued attacks in some areas, and the situation remains fluid and dangerous.”

“Today the killing goes on, and the aggression goes on,” he said.

McCain spoke for seven minutes about the situation in Georgia at the beginning of a town hall meeting in Pennsylvania, praising the country’s “long and remarkable” history and its commitment to Western values. He said he spoke to Georgian president Mikhail Saakashvili earlier in the day.

“He wanted me to say thanks to you, and give you his heartfelt thanks, for the support of the American people for this tiny little democracy far away from the United States of America,” McCain said. “And I told him that I know I speak for every American when I say to him, ‘Today we are all Georgians.’”

The presumptive GOP nominee appeared to allude to past calamities in Europe while describing the crisis.

“My friends, we learned a great cost of the price of allowing aggression against free nations to go unchecked,” he said.

He continued his call for humanitarian aid to be airlifted to the country and for international peacekeeping forces to be sent to the two separatist regions of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

Filed under: John McCain • Pennsylvania
soundoff (235 Responses)
  1. Jackson

    McCain: 'Today we are all Georgians'

    To which Obama replied: Heck, no, I'm Hawaiianeze

    August 12, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  2. Mike in Severna Park, MD

    McCain needs his own war.
    Who better than the hated Russians of old. Reagan would be proud.
    So let me get this straight...
    Georgia wanted its independence because they didn't agree with Russia.
    2 provinces in Georgia wanted their independence from Georgia because they don't agree with Georgia.
    Georgia invades a province, but Russia is not allowed to protect the province that is aligned with her and the Russians that live their because its a mean thing to do.
    Georgia has a short memory. And is a hypocrite.
    John McCain's foreign policy advisor is a paid lobbyist for Georgia.
    We invaded a country unprovoked, but we are wagging our fingers at Russia for defending it's people.

    McCain needs to take a shower, he is so filthy and slimy.
    I hope nobody thinks the lowering of gas prices heading towards the election is an accident. He's making things up as he goes.

    August 12, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  3. ben-Lagos

    I thought it was a bad thing to love Europe or to be loved by Europe. Last week, it was almost a crime to be an European. Why do we as a nation allow people with low IQ to be elected into sensitive position? The types of McCain and Bush do not qualify to be a mayor.

    August 12, 2008 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  4. JfromNC

    To MoveOn: Your comment is insulting to the millions of hard-working democrats. You republicans are the ones that are holier-than-thou. You claim to value life but you support a candidate who supports an unwarrented war and wants more war. McCain has no leadership experience. He is a war-monger, plain and simple. Give me a break!

    August 12, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  5. Patrick

    Today, I am an American and this conflict has little today with the destruction of my country daily by the Republican leadership. What are you doing old man about the fact that 2/3 of American corporations are not paying income tax? What are you doing about my health care? What are you do ing to protect the constitution after your party raped and pilaged it? Why do you hate America John McCain?

    August 12, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  6. The Patriot


    You hit the nail right on the head !! You're a genius.

    Btw, all you whiners note – if you don't stop a terrorist halfway around the world, you'll have to fight him in your own backyard.

    Substance over Hype,

    McCain '08

    August 12, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  7. Michelle

    If Obama did that he would be portrayed as a turncoat trying to BE
    President BEFORE he is president!!!!!
    Bush.. MCsame....nothing but a bunch of sad hypocrites who are *guilty *of the same thing russia did *Invading a soveriegn country*
    MCFool needs to sit down and be quiet !
    How any american can vote this old fool in after the way the Bush administration has tanked the country and its reputation is beyond me!!

    August 12, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  8. Cathy

    Obama got criticized by McCain and Republicans for saying that we are "citizens of the world" and now McCain is trying to do the same thing.

    Unbelievable....McCain is really starting to irritate me to no end.

    August 12, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  9. Michelle, PA

    There have been conflicting reports from the beginnning, but the one clear fact to come out of Georgia is that Russia was not the initial aggressor. This conflict has been months in the making and Georgia with U.S. backing and encouragement provoked a Russian response. Georgia, with U.S. approval, sent its troops into the area resulting in conflicting reports concerning alleged Georgian attacks on civilians (perhaps true, perhaps not). Russia responded to protect its citizens (perhaps spurious, perhaps not) Both sides have been playing games here, and both need to back away. McCain is either dangerously mistaken, dangerously misled or dangerously misinformed. A return to the Cold War – or worse – benefits no one.

    August 12, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  10. Rob in Sacramento

    McMain is hooked on war, the way his plastic wife is hooked on pills. what a demented, bitter old man. our country needs Bush 3, like big oil needs tax subsidies.

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  11. Franky

    "I thought we were Americans, well i guess we are whatever McCain wants us to be since he is a War Hero and a Super-Pow. McCain is the ULTIMATE RIGHT WING NUT!!!"

    Technically, he's not. But you gotta remember, Senator McCain got the "big boys" with him now. For crying out loud, he's like a puppet. He's gotta do what he has to do...

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  12. The Nightingale Sings in Berkley Square

    That team would be a comedy. I think Obama and Larry Craig the two Idaho winners should team up. By the Way---

    Obama's worldview as expressed in Berlin is much closer to the whining, hand wringing critics of Truman, Kennedy and Reagan than it is to the views of these three stalwarts of freedom.

    Obama's response to evil in the world is not "We are staying in Berlin, period," "Ich bin ein Berliner" or "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall."

    Obama's response is "everybody hold hands and sing Kumbaya, cuz golly gee if the world will only 'act as one,' all our troubles and all the bad guys will go away."

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  13. Gail

    "Today the killing goes on – today the agression goes on" – Yea – IN IRAQ.

    Why is it ok to bomb the crap out of one country and not another?

    Why can't we give peace a chance?

    If this country is left to McCain, we'll be at war with Russia in a couple years.

    Obama 'til 2016

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |

    So I quess it is the UNITED STATES OF GEORGIA NOW. Hey we are giving jobs to other countries why not give them our name. Hey Mccain I guess you approved that message to.

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  15. Old Stradlater

    Who says you speak for all Americans? Pretty arrogant from the campaign who claims arrogance on Obama's part.

    Neither side is innocent in this conflict and it's naive to place all the blame on Russia.

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  16. gl

    McWar at it again and he isn't even the President yet! War, War, and War if McWar becomes teh President!

    August 12, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  17. trust

    I'm a true democrat and I have no intention of taking my vote from Clinton over to this moron McCain. So I will vote Obama this November 4th.

    August 12, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  18. Melanie

    You don't speak for me, you old warmongering jerk!

    August 12, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  19. Relle Boston

    Does anyone realize that this man wants to go to war. That is all he wants. Bush set us up in Iraq and Bush is more like Putan and Mccain is like the guy medyedev. Whatever his name is. Go to war and cause the president to resend on leaving office because there is an existing war. Something suspicious going on and everyone is still protecting Bush and Mccain. Mccain can not even get his facts right and people want him as president. He is going to be the talking head for Bush if bush does not call martial law.

    August 12, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  20. JfromNC

    Check out McCain's lobbyst's ties to Georgia. Georgia is not innocent in this conflict.

    August 12, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  21. Obama supporter:White, 60 year old woman

    McCain fails to acknowledge that it is the diplomacy of France and Finland who are dealing with this issue, that it was the Georgians who started this mess, and that he is not the President. I thought he was "An American". A voice from the past that has absolutely no credibility on the world stage.

    August 12, 2008 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  22. MoveOn

    I love it! All of these "Democrat" rants prove that you can't force people to learn if they simply don't have the intellectual ability. Most of their posts are from "No child left behind" drop-outs!

    The least you could do is use spell-check.

    August 12, 2008 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  23. Matthew

    I'm glad McCain has the courage to speak out on behalf of Georgians now...and had the foresight to criticize Russia and its de facto president Putin months ago. Obama has been too slow on this.

    August 12, 2008 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  24. Linda from Prescott AZ

    When was Mr. McCain elected to speak for all of America.
    MYOB and quit making sound bites.

    August 12, 2008 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  25. Patrick, Takoma Park MD

    McCain's belligerent rhetoric isn't helping the situation one bit. Even if we wanted to, we have almost no ability to do anything about Russia's invasion, since McCain's friend Bush has already has over-extended our military to the breaking point, and ruined our relationships with our western European allies.

    August 12, 2008 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
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