London, Sept.13 : Russia has described Georgia's attack on South Ossetia and Abkhazia in August as its 9/11, and claimed that ussia would have attacked Georgia even if it was a member of the NATO.
In a strikingly self-possessed three-hour meeting in Moscow, President Dmitry Medvedev made clear he would be prepared to defend Russians militarily wherever they were in the world. Medvedev said he never imagined he would be confronted with such a foreign policy crisis so early in his tenure, but said it had irrevocably changed him and his country. "It was as important for Russia as the terrorist attacks of 2001 had been for America. The US learnt major lessons from 9/11. The events of 8/8 have lessons for us," The Telegraph quoted Medvedev, as saying. The gathering was the culmination of an extraordinary week, in which a mainly Western group of experts and journalists was granted unprecedented access to the two men who rule Russia.
Medvedev greeted his guests in a top-floor banqueting room of Moscow's famous department store, Gum, opposite the Kremlin. He toasted them with red wine and afterwards posed for a group photograph. Medvedev's demeanour was more poised, but his tone was even tougher than that of his predecessor, and now prime minister, Vladimir Putin, who appeared before the group in the Black Sea resort of Sochi on Thursday.
With continued questions about who actually rules Russia, both men insisted that it is the president who is in charge of matters of state, leaving Putin to deal mainly with the economy.
Medvedev admitted that the confrontation with Georgia and the US had played a role, but said the main reason was instability in world markets.
"The protection of the lives and the dignity of Russia's citizens, no matter where they are, is the most important task of the Russian state."
Medvedev said he had tried on a number of occasions to argue his case to his American and European counterparts, but his conversations he said had fallen on deaf ears.