Missile Defense Dispute: Russia Threatens to Block NATO Supply Route

With Pakistan Already Out, Will NATO Soon Be Out of Supplies in Afghanistan?

As NATO continues to shrug off Russian complaints about their “missile defense shield” in Europe, Ambassador Dmitri Rogozin has warned that Russia might review their cooperation with the Afghan occupation, including revoking NATO’s supply route through Russia.

The northern supply route through Russia and Central Asia is the more expensive of NATO’s two routes into Afghanistan, but it is also the only one active after Pakistan closed the southern route earlier this week to protest the US attack on their military bases.

Since the Pakistan route is never all that safe from attack, NATO has taken to stockpiling extra supplies in Afghanistan for short term cuts. But if NATO has managed to alienate both Russia and Pakistan to the point that the closures are long term, Afghanistan could find itself entirely without a supply route.

And neither issue seems like to get solved any time soon, with President Obama refusing to apologize for killing Pakistani soldiers and NATO having spent years dismissing Russia’s concerns about putting missile defense installments along their frontier.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.