As we draw near the aniversary of the Beslan school assault
, Pravda featured a lead editorial on how Russia will adopt American and Israeli strategies to fight terror. Lieutenant Colonel Yuri Baluevsky, Chief of the Russian General Staff, announced that Russia can and will launch preemptive strikes anywhere in the world
"Speaking of preemptive strikes on terrorist bases, Russia will take all necessary steps for destroying terrorist bases in any part of the world. However, it does not mean that we are going to use nuclear weapons during counterterrorist operations," said he on a press conference held in Moscow on Wednesday.
Find out why this means Russian security agents might start snatching US residents out of their homes after the break.
The Chechen rebel leader who claimed responsibility for the Beslan school attack,Shamil Basayev
, was recently named Deputy Head of the Chechen government and featured prominently in the Pravda article. Needless to say, many Russians are interested in seeing his head on a platter for what happened in Beslan.
However, perhaps of more immediate interest to the west, Baluevsky made his statement after meeting with Commander of Joint NATO Forces in Europe, James Jones, where the Russian raised the issue of getting Akhmed Zakayev extridited from the U.K. Zakayev is a nominal envoy of the Chechen government, who was granted asylum in the UK in 2003. The US is also refusing to extradite Ilyas Akhmadov, another Chechen activist.
Does this mean that we can look forward to a Russian version of the CIA Rendition program? I don't need to list the number of ways in which that would be a threat to the American public. Let's keep an eye on Mr. Ilyas; no matter what we think of him, I'd hate to see citizens granted asylum in this country heading on one-way flights to Moscow with bags over there head.
What have the Neocons wrought?
Cross-posted at Asian Security Review.