Viewing cable 08VILNIUS708
Title: RUSSIA, GEORGIA, GERMANY, LITHUANIA AND THE EU:

IdentifierCreatedReleasedClassificationOrigin
08VILNIUS7082008-08-27 15:26:00 2011-08-30 01:44:00 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Vilnius
VZCZCXRO9730
OO RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHVL #0708/01 2401526
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 271526Z AUG 08
FM AMEMBASSY VILNIUS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 2701
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEHSI/AMEMBASSY TBILISI IMMEDIATE 0078
C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 VILNIUS 000708 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/27/2018 
TAGS: PREL XG GG RU LH
SUBJECT: RUSSIA, GEORGIA, GERMANY, LITHUANIA AND THE EU: 
THREATS AND RESPONSES 
 
REF: A. GILCHRIST - LEADER EMAIL 8/26/08 
     ¶B. STATE 91894 
 
Classified By: Ambassador John A. Cloud for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d) 
 
¶1. (C)  Summary:  The Russian Ambassador told the GOL August 
27 that it would pay a price, including being subject to "not 
ordinary measures," for its outspoken support for Georgia, 
according to Lithuanian MFA U/S Zygimantas Pavilionis.  He 
also reported that FRG Chancellor Merkel, in her visit to 
Lithuania the day before, suggested the EU host a summit in 
Tbilisi for countries on Russia's borders as a sign of 
solidarity; Pavilionis urged that VP Cheney attend if it 
coincides with his visit to the region.  Merkel told the 
Lithuanians Russia still seeks to achieve three goals: 
depose President Saakashvili, both split the EU and divide it 
from the U.S. over Georgia, and undermine Ukraine.  She said 
the details of Georgian support, including MAP, still needed 
to be weighed, but she was forward leaning.  Russia, she 
said, "had destroyed all the confidence it had built up in 
the past twenty years."  Pavilionis shared Lithuanian 
thinking on possible EU responses to Russia, including 
freezing many aspects of EU cooperation, targeting 
individuals through bank account freezes, targeted visa bans 
on the Belarus model, and other points of pressure.  He 
concluded that Lithuania feels threatened and asked us to 
consider political-military consultations (bilaterally or 
with the other Baltics), revising NATO threat assessments, 
and U.S. support for NATO contingency planning.  End Summary. 
 
------------------------------ 
RUSSIA:  YOU WILL PAY A PRICE 
------------------------------ 
 
¶2. (C)  Russian Ambassador to Lithuania Chkhikvadze demarched 
Lithuanian FM Petras Vaitiekunas at 8 a.m. August 27 to 
inform him that Lithuania will suffer "consequences" for its 
support for Georgia.  U/S Pavilionis, who also attended the 
meeting, told DCM that Chkhikvadze said Russia is aware of 
how active Lithuania has been in support of Georgia, but 
should know that "Saakashvili's days are numbered," that 
Russia will take "not ordinary measures" against Lithuania, 
and it will have to pay for its behavior.  He did not 
elaborate what the measures might be.  Pavilionis called it 
an outrageous performance. 
 
¶3. (C) Pavilionis said that, in light of these Russian 
threats, Lithuania is looking for visible signs of support 
from NATO and the U.S.  DCM outlined recent public shows of 
support, including the SOCOM visit August 20, the USS Elrod 
visit August 24-27, and prospectively the USAFE commander's 
September visit, the Presidential meeting September 29, and 
the U.S. rotation of NATO air policing mission starting in 
October, for which we hope to have a senior USG visitor. 
Pavilionis said Lithuania sincerely appreciates all that the 
U.S. is doing, but said it is now looking for NATO military 
contingency planning as well, and encouraged more senior U.S. 
visitors to Lithuania. 
 
------------------------------- 
WORKING WITH MERKEL AND THE EU 
------------------------------- 
 
¶4. (C)  Pavilionis also described Chancellor Merkel's 
meetings the evening before with President Adamkus and other 
GOL officials.  She told Adamkus she hoped to convince 
President Sarkozy to organize (in addition to the September 1 
Paris summit) a meeting in Tbilisi for EU states and other 
regional states who may be threatened by Russia.  She further 
asked President Adamkus to lobby Sarkozy to support such a 
meeting.  Pavilionis said he hoped that, if scheduling would 
allow it, VP Cheney would attend as well to show a united 
U.S.-EU front in the most visible way possible. 
 
¶5. (C)  Merkel told Adamkus that Russia has three remaining 
goals.  The first is to get rid of Saakashvili, which means 
that the West has to show solidarity with him "even if we 
don't like him."  A joint Sarkozy-Cheney visit to Tbilisi 
would help do that.  Second, Russia wants to divide the west 
as much as possible, which makes both EU unity and U.S.-EU 
coordination key.  She said that the weak links in the EU are 
Italy and Spain.  Third, she said Russia wants to destabilize 
Ukraine, so we have to think how we can convince Russia that 
would be a mistake.  Merkel said the West needs to consider 
how we do that, and whether MAP is part of that (while being 
frank that her coalition situation limited her ability to act 
in the face of FM Steinmeir's opposition).  Merkel concluded 
that Russia had destroyed all the confidence that it had 
built up in the West over the past twenty years. 
 
¶6. (C)  Merkel and Adamkus also agreed that something has 
 
VILNIUS 00000708  002 OF 002 
 
 
happened internally in Moscow that caused a shift in the 
forces of power.  Medvedev is clearly weakened, they thought, 
and this may possibly lead to Putin retaking the presidency. 
 
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Lithuanian Menu of Responses to Russia 
--------------------------------------- 
 
¶7. (C)  Pavilionis said that Lithuania at the September 1 EU 
summit would, as suggested by Department (refs A and B), 
support an EU mission to complement the OSCE monitoring 
mission, and be willing to contribute to both.  He also 
described some of the ideas being discussed within the GOL as 
possible responses to Russian actions, which the GOL will 
float within the EU.  The menu is not agreed but ideas 
include, at one end,  freezing ministerial participation in 
the G8; suspending the PCA negotiations or, at the Avignon 
Gymnich, supporting a Swedish proposal to examine in detail 
the existing PCA and stop specific aspects of  EU-Russian 
cooperation, such as access to scientific or technical 
cooperation, and dropping any mention of "strategic 
partnership"; targeting individuals involved in the invasion, 
including freezing bank accounts and a visa ban list; 
freezing Russia's COE membership (for which there is 
presumably a Greek precedent); changing the visa regime for 
access to the Schengen area; or even more radical ideas like 
military exercises in Georgia. 
CLOUD