Well anyone who's been paying attention to the details already knows that whoever started things, Russia A: went way over the top in response and B: was actually already prepared for just such an over the top response. There's no way they could have mobilized that much force that quickly without having planned and prepared for it already. Well it turns out that the signs that it was happening were pretty blatant and go back a fair bit in time, they were just going under the mainstream media's radar.
This post is clearly from a very biased source, however they have good references for all the points they make, and most of it is stuff that's pretty easily verified. Particularly the bit about Russia committing an act of war against Georgia back in April by shooting down a Georgian drone aircraft. Even more significantly, again in April NATO was concerned about Russian troop build up in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
Now i can still imagine some scenarios that would shift the blame back in Georgia's direction, but the above definitely makes it seem like Russia was doing its best to pressure Georgia into exactly what happened. So does anyone know of any good pieces of, or better yet collections of information that supports the idea that Georgia was being irresponsibly bellicose? Obviously it doesn't matter if the source is biased in the other direction as long as the information presented is independently verifiable.
What really confuses me however, is that if Georgia knew that Russia was building up troops along/inside the border, then why did they allow themselves to get suckered into this? Even if the other side started shelling first, why didn't they pull back rather than respond with force? It seems like it would have been better PR form them if they could have forced Russia to make a blatantly aggressive move without offering the excuse of defending the breakaways.
And on a completely irreverent note, i wonder if this means that NBC will be airing the Georgia vs Russia women's volleyball match tomorrow?