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Editor’s Note: The following report is excerpted from Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin, the premium online newsletter published by the founder of WND. Subscriptions are $99 a year or, for monthly trials, just $9.95 per month for credit card users, and provide instant access for the complete reports.

WASHINGTON – The Russian-led security alliance, the Collective Security Treaty Organization, wants to cooperate with the Western alliance, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, on Afghanistan, according to a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

But any NATO request for help would have to recognize Moscow’s “sphere of privileged interests” in the region. In proposing such cooperation, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has sought to highlight the fact Russia already has offered the use of a military base as a supply hub for the United States and the NATO coalition forces.

The CSTO members are Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

Brussels, home to NATO, however, has been mostly silent on the offer because of the members’ tacit recognition of Moscow’s sway over the region. The reason for the overture is the desire for the U.S. and its NATO partners to help fight terrorism and drug trafficking coming from Afghanistan into Russia and its neighbors.

Those two issues have posed serious problems since the region is a conduit for these problems into Russia and Europe. However, Russia especially has been concerned in that NATO has courted some nations there for membership.

Russia sees these countries as part of its security relationship and in turn these countries see an advantage to joining the CSTO since it will mean more modern weapons.

In fact, these countries have begun to give membership in the CSTO a higher priority in terms of developing military doctrine underscoring the alliance’s importance for their own defense. This has had the effect of limiting NATO’s options for expansion, especially in the Central Asian region where the U.S. particularly sought to extend its influence.

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