As Moscow Snags Iran and Pakistan to Boost anti-US Economic Bloc

This week, the Obama administration fixed its attention on three nations making ominous nuclear waves, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea.
Saturday, Nov. 5, US intelligence sources alleged Pakistan was ferrying its nuclear bombs, "which are capable of destroying entire cities, in unsecured delivery vans, on congested and often unmarked roads" to hide them from the US.
Had this report appeared in a local Pakistani paper it might have been dismissed as paranoid raving. However it was run in two Washington publications, Atlantic and National Journal, which cited both US and Pakistani intelligence sources. They explained that Islamabad is deeply suspicious that US special forces will soon descend on Pakistan's nuclear arsenal and grab its contents to keep them out of the hands of Taliban or Pakistani extremist organizations close to Al Qaeda.
National Journal put it this way: "US intelligence officials said that Pakistanis were using low security not only to transfer merely 'de-mated' components, but also 'mated' nuclear weapons, raising widespread concerns in the West. Western nuclear experts are all the more worried as Pakistan is now building small tactical nuclear weapons for quick deployment."


Severing Saudi access to Pakistan's nuclear arsenal


Under the impression of this leaked news story, DEBKA-Net-Weekly's sources in Islamabad report the Pakistani Chief of staff Gen. Ashfaq Kayani assembled the high command and heads of the Strategic Plants Division (SPD) which is charged with safeguarding Pakistani nukes, to discuss the possibility of an American raid on their arsenal.
The Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) chief, Lt.-Gen. Ahmed Shuja, marked down by Washington for his suspected ties with Taliban and the Haqqani Network, was among the officers who suggested that the episode had evolved from an American plan to strike Iran's nuclear program.
According to that plan, they said, if the US and Israel succeed in demolishing Tehran's nuclear and missile capabilities, Washington would seek to balance the score by severing the access Saudi Arabia gained to a nuclear weapon under the secret defense pact Riyadh signed with Islamabad.
Purloining Pakistan's nuclear arsenal would achieve that objective.
Another view offered was that the Americans were increasingly troubled by the deepening political, economic and military ties between Islamabad and Beijing. They see two Muslim nations on the shores of the Arabian Sea, Iran and Pakistan – both closely allied with China – becoming nuclear powers.
A third suggestion was that the seizure of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal by the US would serve Tehran as a vivid demonstration of what it can expect for refusing to drop its nuclear ambitions.


Russia and China show the flag for Pakistan and Iran


Wednesday, Nov. 9, Vice Adm. Scott Swift, who took command of the Seventh Fleet in September, said that while the US military has an "open and robust" relationship with China, he spends a lot of time thinking about North Korea, because of its unpredictability.
"Insight to what their thoughts may be is very limited. It's a closed society," Swift said.
"That's a concern to me because I could not guess where any decision will be going with respect to North Korea."
The Seventh Fleet commander's comments sparked an alert in the North Korean air force and navy.
Standing on the sidelines and watching American moves and Pakistan's responses was the Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin.
Two days after the publication of the reports alleging a US plan to seize Pakistan's nuclear arsenal – which incidentally no member of the Obama administration contradicted – Putin warmly endorsed Pakistan's membership of the exclusive Shanghai Cooperation Organization at its meeting of prime ministers in the Russian city of St. Petersburg.
Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Reza Gilani had been personally invited to the session by the Russian prime minister.
Putin also approved Gilani's proposals for joint trade and energy projects and agreed to shell out $500 million to finance the CASA-1000 project for providing power transmission from three SCO members, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan, to Pakistan and Afghanistan.
The SCO has emerged as a powerful instrument for countering US influence in Russian and Chinese spheres of influence, its economic advantages coming into play increasingly in a period of global recession.
Moscow and Beijing are now backing Iran solidly against the United States and the West. After declaring firmly they would block new UN Security Council sanctions against Iran notwithstanding the findings of the UN Nuclear Agency, both are preparing to promote the Islamic Republic from observer to full membership of the Shanghai Organization alongside Pakistan.

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