Banker Predicted Georgian Invasion 2 Days Early

By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 14, 2008 6:19 PM CDT
France's President Nicolas Sarkozy, right, answers journalists as U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, center, and French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner, look on, Thursday, Aug. 14, 2008.    (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – An investment banker in Kiev predicted the Georgian conflict two days before it occurred, Reuters reports. "So whaddaya think?,” Geoff Smith wrote on Aug. 5 to a fellow strategist at Renaissance Capital. “I say Saakashvili is going to 'restore the territorial integrity of Georgia' five minutes before the opening ceremony starts in Beijing and dare the Russians to invade while the Games are on."

On Aug. 7, the day before the Olympics began, Saakashvili did just that. "It was just intuition," Smith told Reuters. "Certainly the next White House will not be as supportive of Saakashvili as this one, and so if Saakashvili wanted to reunite Georgia he really had to do it this year and he was probably hoping the Olympic Games gave him the right cover."