China Joins Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tajikistan in Security Alliance

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The United States has entered its eighteenth year of war in Afghanistan with no end in sight. Talks begin and end, strategies and tactics are invented and tried, but all to no avail — nothing works. The American public is fed up with this war and it is sapping US resources. During the 2016 presidential race, Trump campaigned for a radical new approach to this conflict that offers America no victories or benefits. It’s time to keep his word. Continue reading

Fresh Wind Down the Silk Road (I)

BERLIN/TASHKENT (Own report) – To secure its influence in Central Asia in rivalry to Russia and China, Berlin is taking new initiatives toward Uzbekistan, the most populous country in the region. Among the five post-Soviet Central Asian countries, Uzbekistan has been Germany’s key partner for the past 25 years, even hosting a Bundeswehr base over an extended period of time. Now the German government seeks to reinforce it position in Uzbekistan by expanding economic relations. Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, in office since one year, is initiating a neo-liberal policy in his country. At the same time, Russia’s rise in influence in the economic and military sectors, alongside China’s greatly enhanced economic advances has put Germany under pressure. If Germany does not want to lose ground in Central Asia, it must act quickly.

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95,000 Russian troops in massive military drill

Russia on Monday launched its largest military exercises of the year, Centre-2015, involving some 95,000 soldiers including ground troops, navy and airforce units.

The long-announced war games are “the most large-scale drill of 2015,” the defence ministry said.

Russia has recently intensified snap checks of its military might, testing its capabilities from the Arctic to the Far East as relations with the West have plunged to a post-Cold War low over the Ukraine crisis. Continue reading

Russian paratroopers, post-Soviet security bloc forces to drill landing on Arctic ice floe

MOSCOW, April 6. /TASS/. Paratroopers from Russia’s Ivanovo and Pskov airborne divisions and rapid reaction forces from the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) member states are preparing for landing on a drifting Arctic ice floe, Russian Airborne Force spokesman Yevgeny Meshkov said on Monday. Continue reading

CSTO states plan to set up collective air force

MOSCOW, December 22. /TASS/. Member states of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) plan to establish collective air force.

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Post-Soviet security bloc to discuss setting up joint air, missile defense system

The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), established in 1992, is comprised of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan

YEKATERINBURG, November 17. /TASS/. Chiefs of General Staff are due to gather for the first extended meeting of the Military Committee of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) in Yekaterinburg, Russia’s Urals, on Monday to discuss security challenges.

“The first extended session of the CSTO Military Committee with participation of plenipotentiary envoys of the CSTO member-states is due to be held on November 17 in Yekaterinburg on the base command of the Central Military District headed by Army General Valery Gerasimov, who is the chairman of the Military Committee, the chief of the General Staff and the first deputy defense minister,” CSTO spokesman Vladimir Zainetdinov said. Continue reading

Russia to bolster military presence in former Soviet states

Air force chief announces plans for new air base in Belarus, as well as expansion of existing facilities in Armenia and Kyrgyzstan. The Moscow Times reports

The three nations are members of a loose Russia-dominated security alliance known as the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), which has accelerated efforts to create a unified air defence network as the Ukraine crisis re-energises the West’s military powerhouse, Nato.

Even before the conflict in Ukraine, Russia under President Vladimir Putin had been making major efforts to re-establish its historical military presence in Eastern Europe, Central Asia, the Arctic and beyond. Negotiations with Vietnam, Cuba, Venezuela and Nicaragua to establish bases for Russian strategic bombers are ongoing.

“By 2020… 47 airfields, including in Crimea in the Arctic, will be renovated under the state armaments programme,” Bondarev was quoted as saying by Interfax on Wednesday. By 2025, he added, the Russian air force will have restored and reopened over 100 military airbases.

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Of strategic missiles and easy money: Russia’s positioning in the South Caucasus

In recent weeks, important information regarding the military balance of power in the South Caucasus has come to light. On June 3rd it was revealed that Russia has stationed an undisclosed number of Iskander-M ballistic missiles in Armenia. While on June 18th media outlets reported that Russia has begun the delivery of nearly $1 billion worth of weaponry, which include tanks, multiple rocket launchers and artillery cannons, to Azerbaijan. Continue reading

Belarus and Russia Prepare Zapad 2013 Military Exercise

In order to continue raising awareness that Moscow can still be on the doorstep of Europe and NATO, one can likely conclude that Moscow will repeat the nuclear preemptive attack training on Warsaw, Poland. As was reported a while ago:

Belarus and Russia will stage a joint military exercise on Belarusian territory in September, allegedly to rehearse a defense against a Polish attack on the country. Controversy concerning plans for Zapad 2013 relate to the issue of whether Moscow will repeat the pattern from Zapad 2009 and also rehearse a pre-emptive nuclear attack on Poland. On April 4, the Belarusian defense ministry issued a statement to refute this claim in response to an article that appeared on a Polish news website (Interfax, April 8). Continue reading