If you needed proof of Russia's contempt for NATO, look no further than Dmitri Rogozin, Moscow's representative to the military alliance. A fiery ultranationalist who once had a poster of Stalin hanging in his office, Rogozin has seemed more showman than diplomat. But since the South Ossetian war, something's changed—the whole Russian government seems to have adopted Rogozin's bluster.
In an interview with the New York Times, Rogozin compares Georgia's first strike in Tskinvali to Sept. 11, calling the two events "basically identical in terms of significance." A self-proclaimed "troublemaker" who ran notoriously racist ads during one election, the diplomat rides a BMW motorcycle around Brussels and calls Georgia a pawn of the US. But Rogozin is no outsider, says one NATO watcher: "He is implementing strict instructions from Moscow."