VOL. 17 NO. 3, 18 February 2015

By Eduard Abrahamyan (02/18/2015 issue of the CACI Analyst)

Armenia’s relationship with Russia has never been simple. Although Russia has considered Armenia a reliable ally since its independence, the relationship has never transformed into a formal partnership. Russia’s policy of double standards on the Nagorno-Karabakh issue and its delivery of weaponry to Azerbaijan has gradually increased distrust in Armenian society towards Russia in recent years. A bloody incident in Gyumri on January 12, 2015, when a soldier from the deployed Russian 102nd military base killed the entire Avetisyan family in their sleep, including two children, has catalyzed a vivid debate in Armenia on the nature of the relationship to Russia.

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By Stephen Blank (02/18/2015 issue of the CACI Analyst)

In early 2015, oil prices are in free fall and the ruble’s value is plunging along with it.  Though Russia is the immediate target or victim of these trends the repercussions of its economic crisis are already manifesting themselves throughout the CIS and affecting the economies of Central Asian and South Caucasian states. Economic crisis due to falling energy prices immediately throws failures of economic and political governance, like excessive borrowing and vanity projects, into sharp relief. But when this occurs in tandem with the depreciation of the Russian ruble and the inability of Russian firms to access foreign capital, the challenges to these states, all of whom are to varying degrees connected to the Russian economy, grow by an order of magnitude.

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By Emil Souleimanov (02/18/2015 issue of the CACI Analyst)

The recent attacks in Paris against the studio of satirical journal Charlie Hebdo, known for its caricatures of Muhammad, have sparked heated debates in Dagestan. While Dagestanis have primarily focused on evaluating the implications of this single case of lethal violence, their debates have unfolded against the background of increasingly frequent attacks carried out by members of local jihadi groups – jamaats – against targets deemed anti-Islamic according to Salafi dogma.

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By John C.K. Daly (02/18/2015 issue of the CACI Analyst)

The Caucasian post-Soviet nations, led by oil-rich Azerbaijan, are expanding their rail, road and air networks to attract rising Eurasian trade. Speaking at Davos, Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili underlined the importance of the joint projects being implemented with Turkey and Azerbaijan, particularly the just opened Baku-Tbilisi-Kars (BTK) railway. Gharibashvili told his audience, “Once operational, it will reduce the period for shipment from China to European markets by more than half and shorten the distance by almost 7,500 km.” Given its energy revenues, Azerbaijan is the driving force behind these changes.

Picture 4 CACI 18 02

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Joint Center Publications

Silk Road Paper S. Frederick Starr, Bulat Soltanov, et. al., "Looking Forward: Kazakhstan and the United States", September 2014. 

Analysis
Svante E. Cornell, "No More Frozen Conflicts"The American Interest, 21 July 2014.

Op-Ed
Svante E. Cornell, "Why America Must Step Up Its Role in Resolving Armenian-Azerbaijani Conflict", Christian Science Monitor, 10 June 2014.

Analysis Halil Karaveli, "Cold Turkey: Reforming Ankara from the Outside In", Foreign Affairs, April 23, 2014. 

Op-Ed
Svante E. Cornell, "Checking Putin's Eurasian Ambitions",Wall Street Journal, 6 April 2014.

Analysis Svante E. Cornell, "Crimea and the Lessons of Frozen Conflicts", The American Interest, 20 March 2014.

Op-Ed S. Frederick Starr, "Moderate Islam? Look to Central Asia", New York Times, 26 February 2014.

Book 
Svante E. Cornell and Michael Jonsson, eds.,Conflict, Crime and the State in Postcomunist Eurasia, University of Pennsylvania Press, February 2014, 304pp. (Click here for contents and first chapter)

Monograph
Svante E. Cornell, Getting Georgia Right, Brussels: Center for European Studies, December 2013.

Silk Road Paper Stephen Blank, Azerbaijan's Security and U.S. Interests: Time for a Reassessment, December 2013.

Book S. Frederick Starr, Lost Enlightenment: Central Asia's Golden Age from the Arab Conquest to Tamerlane, Princeton University Press, September 2013.

 

 

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 Johns Hopkins University's Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Washington DC., and the Institute for Security and Development Policy, Stockholm. For 15 years, the Analyst brings cutting edge analysis of the region geared toward a practitioner audience.

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