via Indian Punchline.
Without doubt, the sudden appearance of the Afghan First Vice-President Rashid Dostum in Russia can be seen against this backdrop of gathering storms. Dostum travelled to Moscow on an official visit last week and from there he proceeded to Chechnya to meet the local strongman Ramzan Kadyrov in Grozny on October 5. The reports mention him as having held talks in Moscow with “top Russian security officials, pleading for heavy weapons and helicopter gunships” for the Afghan armed forces. Dostum’s spokesman Sultan Faizy said, “The Russian side is committed to support and help Afghanistan in terms of helping its air and military forces. We’re lacking air support, weapons, ammunition”.Just plain wow.
Unsurprisingly, Dostum’s discussions with Kadyrov focused on the plans by the Islamic State to make Afghanistan a bridgehead. Dostum was quoted as saying, “Both Ramzan Kadyrov and I have been waging the struggle with international terrorism. In this field we can make a substantive coalition. We can learn from each other. We don’t have concrete projects of cooperation yet, but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any in the future”. Indeed, Moscow has put Dostum in touch with Kadyrov who is a tough battle-hardened veteran of a brutal war against the radical Islamist groups operating in North Caucasus.
Of course, Dostum himself was originally trained in the Soviet Military Academy in Moscow in the eighties to fight the Afghan Mujahideen. But in later years, he showed the willingness to work for other countries such as Uzbekistan, Pakistan, Turkey and the United States. However, presumably, his links with the Russian intelligence never quite dried up and in the current circumstances – in particular, Taliban’s attack on his power base of Jowzjan recently and an abortive attempt to kill him – there would have been a congruence of interests between him and his Russian hosts.
The Middle East is unraveling, Afghanistan is on the edge and our military/intel professionals seem to be unaware.
This is ominous.
Is it tinfoil hatish to say that it appears we're marching toward a major regional if not multi-region war?