Thoughts on Georgia
OK, so obviously, given our current ongoing commitments in Iraq and Afghanistan, we can't intervene with ground troops, even if the Georgians asked up too.
Just as obviously, we shouldn't let the Russians get away with being the thuggish bullies that they've been for several hundred years. (Yes, Ivan, Katherine, Peter, and Uncle Joe, I'm talking to all of you.) Of course, since Russia is a permanent member of the Security Council, the UN will be even more ineffective than usual.
So what can we do? Well, if I were President...
First, the Flexible Deterrent Options (FDOs):
-move Navy ships into the Black Sea, an Expeditionary Strike Group if available, making sure they have air cover.
-speaking of air cover, move Air Force combat planes as close as possible, without going into Georgia proper. Given the historic animosity between the two nations (not to mention that the terminus of the BTC pipeline, which the Russians have attacked, is in Turkey), I'm sure the Turks would cooperate, and Incirlik air base is quite well equipped. If any available bases have the necessary support facilities, move a few B2s in, making sure they fly in in daylight so the local Russian consulate gets a good look.
-if Kiev is willing to cooperate, get them to inform the Russians that if the Black Sea fleet (currently in the Black Sea near the Russian-Georgian border) takes any part in the conflict, the ships will not be allowed to return to Odessa or Sebastapol. Ever.
Now, something a bit more aggressive:
-have an AWACS orbit just south of the Georgian/Turkish border, broadcasting the speed, heading, and altitude of Russian aircraft IN THE CLEAR, for anyone who cares to listen. It's not overt assistance, but it will definitely put a hurt on Russian air efforts.
-of course, freezing whatever Russian assets can be found, and cutting of access to the US banking system also work as attention getters.
-Oh, and if were feeling especially snarky, we could recognize the independence of Chechnya, and offer any resident of said region who wants it a US passport, then claim to be protecting them if the Russians attack them.
And, finally, military options:
-As the map below shows, there's only one major road between Russian and South Ossetia.
Even more fun, apparently that road goes through a tunnel at or near the border. A couple of well placed bombs from one of the aforementioned B-2s and the Russian ground forces are cut off. Not fun being in a mechanized force when the fuel runs out.
This option has the advantage of allowing the Russians to back down, without having to directly shoot at them.
-If it comes to shooting Russians in Georgia, the first thing to do would be to put up US fighters directed by AWACS to provide air defense for the Georgians. If having their planes shot down doesn't stop the Russkies, then we start the air strikes.
Dust off your Cold Warrior suits, boys.
So Thursday, the BBT brought my CMMG upper, and yesterday I bought a Del-Ton lower to go with it. Last night, I gathered all the necessary parts, pointed Firefox to ar15.com, and set to work.
Only to be brought up short on the second step of the assembly. Seems the bolt catch in my DPMS parts set is bent, and thus won't fit in it's assigned slot.
There are three gun stores in town that sell AR parts, and I'm not sure if they sell individual parts like that, or if they've even open on Sundays.
The gun show's in town this weekend, but I already went yesterday (and was hugely disappointed to see only empty tables where Georgia Arms usually sets up), and I can't justify 45 minutes of travel time and the $7 entrance fee to buy a $7 part.