Does it matter though?

by Nathan Hamm on 11/4/2004

A couple posts down, Laurence asked what Bush’s victory means for Central Asia. You can see my answer there. It is important in these discussions to not treat Central Asian governments and neighboring states as passive receptors of the policy that flows from Washington.

I would argue, for example, that Central Asian governments have proven very adept at asserting their own interests by refusing to become too committed to either the US or Russia. Over the past year, Central Asian governments have drifted towards Russia because of its familiarity, willingness and ability to massively invest in Central Asian economies, and its total lack of concern for human rights or democracy. The door is still open for the US and NATO, but it has closed quite a bit as Russia has started to assert itself.

In today’s EDM, Roger McDermott looks at the challenge Bush faces in Central Asia. And, it most definitely will be a challenge.

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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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