Pubdate: Sat, 31 Aug 2002
Source: Washington Post (DC)
Copyright: 2002 The Washington Post Company
Author: Alexander Litvinenko

Watch Your Alliances

By citing together Russian special services and Northern Alliance forces as 
perpetrators of atrocities in Chechnya and Afghanistan, respectively 
[editorial, Aug. 21], The Post stumbled on a much deeper link between the 
two than mere participation in America's war against terrorism.

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, corrupt officials of the Russian 
FSB (Federal Security Service) have made millions working with Gen. 
Abdurrashid Dostum on exporting Afghan-produced narcotics to the markets of 
Europe. As an officer of the FSB anti-organized crime unit, I investigated 
that connection and reported on it to Vladimir Putin when he was FSB 
director. He took no action because the Afghan connection was deemed of 
strategic significance to Russia.

He proved right. After Sept. 11, Gen. Dostum and his FSB colleagues became 
an asset that Mr. Putin offered to the West in exchange for condoning the 
war in Chechnya. In the meantime, the flow of Afghan drugs to the streets 
of Russian and European cities continues. This is another subject for 
investigating dark sides of U.S. alliances.

Alexander Litvinenko

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