Putin says Russian offensive to persuade Georgia to embrace peace
Prime Minister Putin says the Russian offensive will continue as long as it takes to restore peace and persuade Georgia to return to normal relations with Russia. Appearing before his Cabinet Monday, he accused the West of falsely portraying the Georgian aggressors as victims and said the American airlift of Georgian soldiers from Iraq adds a new and very ominous dimension to the South Ossetia conflict. He also likened the Georgian leadership to Saddam Hussein. Indeed, the Georgian assault on Thursday night rubbled ten South Ossetian villages and included atrocities like burning people alive and squashing them with tanks.