Magazine article The New American

U.S.-Russia Convergence. (Insider Report)

Magazine article The New American

U.S.-Russia Convergence. (Insider Report)

Article excerpt

In the aftermath of the September 11th terror attacks, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP) has assumed increased prominence, with its spokesmen garnering considerable face time on the network news and plenty of ink in the print media. Although it poses as an objective, scholarly think tank, WINEP is really a Mideast "wonk factory" for the internationalist set at the Council on Foreign Relations. Headed by CFR members Robert Satloff and Dennis B. Ross, the Institute reliably retails the CER line that the U.S. must cooperate closely with Russia and "former" Communist satellites in the Commonwealth of Independent States in developing any viable Mideast policies. Thus it treats Moscow's deceptions and manipulations in the Middle East region and Russia's continued military dominance of the Islamic CIS states in the most positive light. According to the WINEP line: We should not view Russia's military presence in Tajikistan as a blatant example of Moscow's continued control and its intention to do minate this strategic oil-producing area; we should instead be thankful that it is providing "stability."

In its September 26th Policy Watch newsletter WINEP's Sheila Heslin writes: "Although Tajikistan has begun a slow economic recovery, its unsettled political situation, grinding poverty, drug-running criminal networks, radical Islamic activists, and close proximity to the war in Afghanistan are major obstacles. As President Emomali Rakhmonov has sought to stabilize the country, he has come to rely on a large contingent of Russian forces. …

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