By Stephen Blank (12/5/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: Of the making of international quagmires there seems to be no end. Afghanistan is only the latest example where governments have failed or disintegrated due to their own belligerence, leaving the international community no choice but to reconstitute public order lest humanitarian disaster and war endlessly ravage it. As in many other previous cases, Afghanistan’s prognosis, despite the undoubted progress of the Bonn conference on establishing a future government, is guarded.
By Maria Sultan (12/5/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: Asymmetry of firepower has always been both a goal in itself and a method of war for powerful states, who have felt the desire to have a leading edge over their adversaries’ capacity to fight. However, the logic of the use of asymmetry of power in itself understandably leads to an asymmetric response by the weaker party. The most obvious examples of different actors turning to fight such asymmetric wars, from the American perspective, is the Viet Cong, which in the early stages of the conflict was repeatedly defeated by overwhelming US power, but turned it into an eventual success due to its use of asymmetric methods of war, making use of terrain, local population, ambushes, i.
By Jyldyz Sydygalieva (12/5/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: During the Soviet era, the Kyrgyz Republic was a major source of uranium for both military and industrial purposes. There are approximately 130 sites in Kyrgyzstan containing about 620 million cubic meters of waste products that were buried during the Soviet time, mostly from the mining industry. About half of these sites contain waste from nuclear production - an industry that most Kyrgyz citizens were not aware had existed within their territory because it was kept a secret by the Soviet authorities.
By Robert M. Cutler (12/5/2001 issue of the CACI Analyst)
BACKGROUND: After Kazakhstan unwillingly obtained its independence upon the disintegration of the Soviet regime, Nazarbaev tacitly proclaimed war against the bloated state bureaucracy he inherited, which also constituted a potential opposition power base. After the first post-Soviet parliament was elected in 1994, on the basis of the country's first post-Soviet constitution, lobbies and alliances began to emerge between parliamentary groupings on the one hand, and the lower and middle ranks of the ministerial structures on the other. Nazarbaev engineered the parliament's dissolution in 1994 when, on the basis of an accusation of electoral fraud by an anti-Nazarbaev candidate in a single electoral district, the Constitutional Court ruled the entire parliament to be illegal.
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.