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S E C U R I T Y : C S T O  &  S C O
The East is ready
Russia is catalysing almost the best possible anti-US front

The West Asia quagmire is having its resonance beyond the sphere of the Gulf region. With the near decimation of Iraq and the subsequent American trampling of Iran being almost an inevitability, the need for checking the hegemony of US has been felt across the globe.

The importance of regional security organisations to counter the US in this perspective has increased immensely. One such potent organisation in the making has been the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO). Formed in the post Soviet-CIS (Commonwealth of Independent States) era, CSTO was formed initially by Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Armenia. Joined later by Azerbaijan, Georgia & Belarus, the grouping is meant more to check increasing American influence in central Asia. The fear of an Iraq-like persecution for oil has forced countries like Uzbekistan (which had initially walked out) to come back to the CSTO fold. Add to this the war games conducted by the CSTO in August 2006, the bonhomie between CSTO and Shanghai Co-operation Organisation (SCO, that includes China & Russia) and a ‘more closer than ever before’ strategic relationship between India and Russia amply vindicate the rise of a formidable Sino-Indo-Russian strategic triangle against the US or NATO. The key to such alliances has been Russia which is acting like a catalyst in galvanising central Asia, India and China for creating a formidable alliance against the US.

Pathikrit Payne

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