By Dr. Robert Bruce Ware (9/13/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: Political Islam became an active force in the Soviet Union during perestroika through the Islamic Party of Revival (IPR) that owed its organization and development to the efforts of three Dagestanis: Ahmed-Kadi Ahktayev, and the brothers Abbas and Bagaudin Kebedov. Bagaudin Kevedov, who is also known as Bagaudin Magomedov, became a key figure among Dagestani Wahhabis and is presently participation in the struggle in Chechnya. Wahhabism is a fundamentalist Sunni Islamic movement founded in Arabia in the middle 18th century by Mohammed Abd-al-Wahhab.
By Ahmed Rashid (9/13/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: The traditional Taliban summer offensive against the Northern Alliance forces led by Ahmad Shah Masud began on July 1, with two attempts to push back Masud's forces north of Kabul and clear the Bagram valley. Both attempts failed and the Taliban since late July concentrated on capturing Taloqan, the headquarters of the Northern Alliance. The Taliban swept up strategic towns along Afghanistan's border with Tajikistan, thereby cutting most but not all of Masud's links with his supply base in southern Tajikistan.
By Azmat Hayat Khan (5/22/2002 issue of the CACI Analyst)BACKGROUND: The Afghans, and especially the majority Pashtun population, live in a tribal, egalitarian society, in which Islam and the Pashtu Code (Pukhtunwali) are inseparable from one another - though the Pashtu Code often becomes dominant. During times of crisis, Afghans have always been led by traditional national leaders. As tribesmen, the Afghans defend their territory against one another, or against other tribes, but during national crises, tribal differences are shelved and the nation as a whole takes up arms against an invader or a rebel - as in the instance of Iran attacking Herat in 1832.
By Dr. Robert M. Cutler (9/27/2000 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: In October 1992, nine CIS countries signed the Bishkek Accord on visa-free travel: Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Moldova. Georgia joined the accord in August 1995. In 1997, Ukraine and Azerbaijan separately negotiated bilateral regimes of visa-free travel with Russia.
The Central Asia-Caucasus Analyst is a biweekly publication of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute & Silk Road Studies Program, a Joint Transatlantic Research and Policy Center affiliated with the American Foreign Policy Council, Washington DC., and the Institute for Security and Development Policy, Stockholm. For 15 years, the Analyst has brought cutting edge analysis of the region geared toward a practitioner audience.