Georgian Parliamentary Chairperson Nino Burjanadze told reporters on September 6 that the Georgian special services are investigating possible link between the Georgia’s breakaway South Ossetia and the terrorist act in Russia’s North Ossetian town of Beslan.~ Civil Georgia

It might be that the terrorist outrages in Beslan this week, where over 300 died and at least some 200 remain unaccounted for, were aided by the relatively lawless situation in the Caucasus and in Georgia specifically. It should be redundant to point out that South Ossetians themselves, however criminal their local power-brokers may be, have no interest in harming people in North Ossetia or anywhere else inside Russia, the political benefactor of Ossetians, and they have definite reasons to try to thwart such actions from taking place.

These dreadful attacks underscore the importance of real Russian security needs in stabilising and controlling its territory in the northern Caucasus, even as they demonstrate the general failure of Russian policy to date. If the lawlessness in South Ossetia did aid these terrorists, then Russia has especially vital security interests in normalising the situation in South Ossetia and throughout the northern Caucasus, for the sake of her own people if not for anyone else’s sake. We may all only hope that, in the midst of these terrible days of mourning throughout Russia, Georgian President Saakashvili does not seek to exploit these terrible atrocities to advance his dubious political cause in South Ossetia.