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Footrace to Recognition

ortega090508.jpg Daniel Ortega, left, shakes hands with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Kisliak during a meeting in Managua, Friday, May 18, 2007. (AP) Not long ago I somewhat jokingly predicted that the foreign desk at the Kremlin was having a really tough time choosing which surrogate state they should nudge into joining them as the second government to recognize the independence of Georgian territories Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Well it seems that the clumsy footrace back to the Soviet past was won yesterday, as the dark horse Daniel Ortega, the Sandinista president of Nicaragua, beat out his good friends Hugo Chavez and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Isn’t it a little problematic for Mr. Ortega, as a former guerrilla fighter and leader of a country which was occupied by the Marines from 1912 to 1933 and torn to shreds by brutal Contra militias funded by Washington, to endorse the invasion and occupation of Georgia? One would think Tbilisi and Managua would be natural allies for the defense of sovereignty and non-intervention for small democracies.