Central Asia

Russian Strategy – WTF?

by Nathan Barrick

Is Russian Strategy warlike – true or false? Russia’s strategic deployment and bombing campaign in Syria appears to have surprised and shocked many observers, including Russia watchers.  It shouldn’t have. The uproar is all about Russian aggression and expansionism.  Pundits decry Putin’s alleged attempt to re-create the Soviet Union.  The descriptors of Putin and Russia […]

7 comments Read the full article →

Islamic Banking Reaches the Post-Soviet Space

by Luke Rodeheffer

I recently wrote a brief for Global Risk Insights on how Islamic Banking is rapidly spreading across Central Asia and the Caucasus: The interest in Russia for the regulation of Islamic Banking reflects an even greater interest in the sector across the post-Soviet space. The Post-Soviet states of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan […]

Read the full article →

Central Asia after the 2014 Drawdown

by Kailash Prasad

For Washington, hedging against Islamabad’s vagaries while moving materiel out of Afghanistan has meant greater dependence on the Central Asian Republics crucial to the Northern Distribution Network (NDN) – despite the steep 17,500 USD transit cost per container. The Kabul – Khyber – Karachi route in comparison costs 7,200 USD. Using the NDN however has proved costly […]

Read the full article →

Understanding the Implications of the Ukraine Crisis

by Nathan Barrick

I’m disturbed by the short-sightedness of media analysis of the events in Ukraine, even as they begin to explore deeper – they are trapped by their own previous reporting and I hope they feel guilty enough about it to start getting it right…not likely. I am also annoyed at the U.S. government’s public analysis and […]

4 comments Read the full article →

Influence: The Bogeyman of Simplified Strategic Understanding

by Nathan Barrick

Many times I have been asked to assess whether one nation or another is “increasing influence,” usually to categorize as “good” or “bad” developing events for someone with little time or understanding of the situation. Frequently, the right answer – “It depends…” – has to be discarded due to an enforced sense of urgency that […]

Read the full article →

The Three Evils of Narco-Policy in Central Asia

by Reid Standish
Thumbnail image for The Three Evils of Narco-Policy in Central Asia

On July 3, the head of the Russian Federal Drug Control Service (RSKN), Viktor Ivanov announced plans to create an anti-drug operations center through the auspices of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO). The proposed plan to fight drug trafficking in Afghanistan and Central Asia called for the establishment of national headquarters in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan […]

7 comments Read the full article →

How do Post-2014 Spillover Fears and Russian Foreign Policy Goals Align?

by Reid Standish
Thumbnail image for How do Post-2014 Spillover Fears and Russian Foreign Policy Goals Align?

“Thousands of terrorists and fundamentalists will seek refuge in Afghanistan as well as the region around the country,” said Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin on a visit to India back in October 2012. “It [Afghanistan] may change the situation drastically around the region and for countries like Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, and Central Asia.” In response […]

7 comments Read the full article →