Wanted: A Strategy for the Black Sea   [open pdf - 144KB]

This op-ed discusses the importance of Central Asia to the United States. From the text: " There exists an extensive literature on the strategic importance of the Black Sea zone. Yet it is difficult to discern whether U.S. policymakers are pursuing a coherent strategy for this crucial region. Although Kyrgyzstan is in Central Asia, an adjoining region, events there are symptomatic of this strategic challenge. Not only did our embassy in Kyrgyzstan repeat the mistake the United States made in Iran by being excessively attached to the reigning government and insufficiently attuned to other opposing socio-political groups, its actions during the April 2009 upheaval were inadequate, even though it had forewarning of that event. Public reporting now confirms that the leaders of the April revolution in Kyrgyzstan confided to the embassy that a successful uprising, that would catapult a transitional government into the leadership of the country, was imminent. Yet the embassy reacted ineffectually and apparently did not alert Washington to the information it was provided. As a result, a revolution that bore the visible fingerprints of Russian incitement and Moscow's employment of diplomatic, economic, informational, and even military instruments of power, overthrew the Bakiyev government before the United States could intervene effectively."

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Army War College Strategic Studies Institute: http://www.strategicstudiesinstitute.army.mil/
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