Russia's assault on the sovereignty of Georgia is a major challenge to the influence and credibility of the United States. If we can't, or won't, stand up for an ally then an alliance with the U.S. won't be worth much.
And if an alliance with the United States isn't worth much, our opinion on international matters won't be worth much, either. In a very real sense, the Georgian conflict will determine the power of the United States for many years.
Europe is continuing their spineless ways, just as they were content to allow mass slaughter in the former Yugoslavia, they are content to remain passive in the face of Russia's direct threat to their neighbor and themselves.
Anything other than harsh response will lead Russia to invade another country. Why not? If we don't do anything but talk, there is nothing to stop them. Of course, we cannot ignore the role of our Iraq war in all this maneuvering. Russia is betting, accurately, that the United States does not want another major conflict simultaneous with two full-scale wars.
This is the time for Germany and other nations to place troops in Georgia to protect their democracy, as well as Georgia's. And any alternate energy plans should be made top national security priority. Without oil, Russia is just another has-been on the world stage.