EU CENTRAL ASIA STRATEGY

"Reset" Won't Fix It!

By David J. Smith

Last April 7, the world was too busy to notice Russian fingerprints on the coup that toppled Kyrgyzstani President Kurmanbek Bakiyev. Within weeks, ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbeks were at each other’s throats. Moscow, it seems, is good at breaking things, but not at fixing them.

Is NATO to Blame for Russia's Afghan Heroin Problem?

By Simon Shuster

It had to be one of the weirdest displays the Russian president had ever seen. Laid out on a table were a mound of walnuts, a chess set, an old tire and an anatomically correct dummy — all stuffed with little baggies of imitation heroin. Titled "The Deadly Harvest," the exhibit was meant to show the clever ways smugglers have of getting Afghan heroin into Russia, which has become the world's largest consumer of opiates from Afghanistan since the U.S. began its war there in 2001.

Kyrgyzstan Learns to Survive in Chaos

By Erica Marat

Amid corruption scandals and ongoing instability it is easy to write off Kyrgyzstan as a state destined to fail due to its dishonest political leaders and impoverished economy. However, despite the fact that the provisional government has not filled all its ministerial seats and faces numerous domestic challenges, there is a strong sense of normality in Kyrgyzstan’s daily life. As local NGO groups like to describe it: “despite troubled government, life continues in Bishkek.” Indeed, in the past two months Kyrgyzstan has changed from being a country where dynastic succession of state power was most likely to a place with free media and active civic engagement.

A Russian Made Disaster in Kyrgyzstan

By Daniel Greenfield

The violence unleashed in Kyrgyzstan is being spun as ethnic rioting. The reality is a good deal more complex, and the blame can be laid directly at Russia's door. Russia's coup against the Bakiyev government which took power in the Tulip Revolution leveraged Uzbek separatists in the Osh Province to suppress Kyrgiz nationalist supporters of Bakiyev.