After playing hide-and-seek with the world, Russian President Vladimir Putin appears to be back in the land-grab business. This time, with Georgia's runaway region of South Ossetia.
Yet the Wednesday deal does merge certain parts of key institutions (de jure in Russia's case; de facto in South Ossetia's) -- namely, in the army, intelligence, law enforcement and customs.
South Ossetians long have been going around Moscow asking to be annexed (and united with neighboring North Ossetia), but the Kremlin has been rolling its eyes at the idea as “out of the question.”
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