February 25, 2010
Europe's New Flashpoint
Daniel McGroarty, RealClearWorld
The snap visit this week of veteran U.S. diplomat Richard Holbrooke to Georgia - ostensibly to discuss Georgian participation as a supply route to the Afghanistan battlefront - underscores an unsettling new development in U.S.-Russian relations. At the ragged edge of the old East-West divide, a new battle is taking shape: this one for influence over - and under - the Black Sea.
For much of the Cold War, the Black Sea was bounded by territory under Soviet control - the Georgian, Ukrainian and Russian Soviet Socialist Republics on the eastern shore, Warsaw Pact members Romania and Bulgaria on the west - with Turkey providing NATO its sole, albeit geo-critical position at the throat of the Black Sea.
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TAGGED: Black Sea, the Black Sea, Cold War, United States, Romania, Russia, Georgia, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Turkey, Afghanistan, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Russian Navy, Warsaw Pact, Obama, Richard Holbrooke, Moscow, President , diplomat