Eruption of war in the Caucasus underscores the tragic consequences of the dismemberment of the USSR in early 1990s. It exposed the masses of the former SU, Russia and other Soviet republics to the dangers of the US-led major imperialist powers to exploit the resources that these republics possessed. Not withstanding the reactionary designs of Moscow, no objective observer can contest the fact that Washington's provocative policy toward Russia, aimed at supplanting Russia in its long-time spheres of influence, was the primary factor behind this outbreak of war between Georgia and Russia. A month back, the US trouble-shooter Rice visited Georgia and held talks with Saakashvili and held a press conference at which she denounced Moscow and backed Saakashvili's efforts to reassert Georgian control over South Ossetia and Abkhazia, reiterating US support for Georgia's incorporation into NATO. It is inconceivable that Saakashvili did not review his plans in detail with Rice for a military assault on South Ossetia. Georgia, which is entirely dependent on US military, financial and diplomatic support, could not have indulged in this adventurism without Washington's tacit consent, especially when the Georgian garrison is dominated from top to bottom by US military advisers. Washington has been pouring military hardware into Georgian capital Tbilisi since the US-led air strikes against Serbia in 1999. The pace and scale of military aid had accelerated since Washington engineered the so-called Rose Revolution that had brought Saakashvili to power in early 2004. American experts trained the Georgian defence force in the fundamentals of war strategy. At the same time, Georgia began re-equipping its forces with Israeli and US firearms, reconnaissance drones, communication and battlefield management equipment, new vehicle convoys and stockpiles of ammunition. Washington was surprised by the timing and blitzkrieg of Russian military's move into South Ossetia and is still trying to sort out as to what happened, said a US defence official on Monday. If there were any people in the State Department who had ever studied history of Caucuses region, particularly with regard to the resolve of the Russian government when it feels under threat, the Georgian government would never have been given a green signal by the US and NATO to try this non-planned and insane incursion in South Ossetia. Of course, it appears that the people who actually have the kind of background and knowledge to give the military thoughtful, reasoned and timely counsel are simply not the people who are hired to do so. For Washington it's generally a matter of cronyism and not competence. That is why the US military was surprised that there was no one to tell them what Moscow's response would be. It was only when the Russian forces responded to the Georgian attack with a rapid massive counteroffensive; crushing the much smaller Georgian garrison that Washington became alarmed. In a provocative statement, Bush escalated the confrontation between the US and Russia over the current fighting in Georgia. Bush denounced what he called Russia's "dramatic and brutal military escalation and demanded of Moscow to immediately declare ceasefire and withdraw its forces from Georgia." He charged that Moscow was out to overthrow the pro-US government of Georgian. Bush's remarks followed a statement by Cheney, who said, "Russian aggression could not go unanswered," which indicated the existence of a faction within Bush administration that was pushing for a more aggressive US response to Russian intervention in Georgia. The statement was a staggering example of hypocrisy. The US government issued no protest when Georgian forces attacked Ossetia, killing about 2,000 civilians. Since the US was clearly at the back of Georgian assault on Ossetia, it is difficult to believe that Washington believed that Moscow would remain a silent spectator in response to such a grave provocation. Why then, they supported a move that would bring Russia in direct conflict with one of Washington' principal allies in the Caucasus? Russian officials believe that it was Washington that orchestrated the current clash. The chairman of the State Duma Committee for security, Vladimir Vasilyev believes that the current conflict in Ossetia is an anecdotal of the wars in Iraq and Kosovo. The demands being raised by Washington, EU, UN and others for a return to the "status quo" in Georgia are drenched in hypocrisy. Moscow understands that the US is not going to abandon what it has come to see as a critical prop to its position in the Caucasus and its long-term perspective of reducing Russia to a semi-colonial status. Bush is now at the centre of possibly one of the most idiotic foreign policy embarrassments into which the US has ever gotten itself. By having "green-lit" a Georgian invasion of South Ossetia, an action for which one cannot even use the word "planned", the US hoped that this would crank up a long-term conflict between Georgia and Russia. Unfortunately, there was no resistance by the US trained Georgian forces, and the US "so-hoped" for long-term battle failed. Back in 2005, Bush made a promise to the Georgians: "The path of freedom you have chosen is not easy, but you will not travel alone. Americans respect your courageous choice for liberty, and as you build a free and democratic Georgia, the people of America will stand by you." But then, where was Bush when Russia launched a major military attack on Georgia? He couldn't have possibly despatched the US Marines to Tbilisi, but his impotence in the face of such a gravely destabilising move highlights not only his personal loss of stature and how deeply he has diminished US authority at the global stage generally, particularly in the eyes of Russians. The US holds absolutely no leverage, and all of Bush's blustering cannot take back the terrible carnage that has come about due to the choice the US made to back the Tbilisi invasion of Ossetia. Moscow is terribly angry over the sale of unarmed aerial drones and security support to Georgia by Israel at the behest of Washington. By such moves, Washington might risk Nuclear War by miscalculations. This means that the attack on South Ossetia is the first battle in a new proxy war between Anglo-US-Israeli nexus and Russia. After being terribly mauled in Afghanistan and Iraq, the US has limited options to take the risk of hugging the angry Russian bear. The writer is a former inspector general of police