A US Navy warship carrying humanitarian aid anchored at the Georgian port of Batumi today, sending a strong signal of support to an embattled ally as Russian forces built up around two separatist regions. But a top Russian general suggested that the presence of US and other NATO ships in the Black Sea would worsen tensions already at a post-Cold War low.
The guided missile destroyer USS McFaul, loaded with some 80 pallets containing about 55 tons of humanitarian aid, is the first of three American ships scheduled to arrive this week. The aid includes baby food, diapers, bottled water, and milk. Georgians "will feel safe not because the destroyer is here but because they will feel they are not alone facing the Russian aggression," said Georgia's defense minister. (Read more Georgia stories.)