Kyrgyzstan And The Battle For Central Asia

Published on Voltairenet.org, by Rick Rozoff, 8 April 2010.

Confusion reigns in Bishkek after the overthrow of President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, whom Washington placed in power in the wake of the so-called “Tulip Revolution”. The dictator had set up a U.S. military base in Manas, ruthlessly quelling all dissent. It is still unclear whether the new government springs from the Moscow-backed opposition or whether it represents a régime change promoted by Washington … //

… In the four decades of the Cold War political changes through elections or otherwise in any nation in the world – no matter how small, impoverished, isolated and seemingly insignificant – assumed importance far exceeding their domestic effects. World political analysts and policy makers asked the key question: Which way would the new government align itself, with the U.S. or the Soviet Union? 

In the post-Cold War period the question is no longer one of political philosophy or socio-economic orientation, but this: How will the new administration support or oppose U.S. plans for regional and global dominance?

With Roza Otunbayeva as chief spokesperson if not head of a new Kyrgyz “people’s government,” there is reason to believe that Washington will not be dissatisfied with the overthrow of her former “tulip” partner Bakiyev. She has already confirmed that the American base at Manas will not be closed.

Less than two months after the 2005 coup Otunbayeva, then acting foreign minister, met with her U.S. counterpart Condoleezza Rice in Washington during which the latter assured her that “the U.S. administration will continue to help the Kyrgyz government promote democratic processes in the country.” [13]

Shortly after the March “democratic transformation,” its patron saint, Georgia’s Mikheil Saakashvili, boasted that “Roza Otunbayeva worked in Tbilisi in recent years and was the head of UN office in Abkhazia. During the Rose Revolution she was in Georgia and knew everything that was happening…the Georgian factor was a catalyst of many things going on there [in Kyrgyzstan].” [14]

From the U.S. perspective she appears to have reliable bona fides.

Russia has put its air base in Kyrgyzstan on high alert, though comments from leading Russian government officials – Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in particular – indicate an acceptance of the uprising which has already caused 65 deaths and hundreds of injuries.

But Russia attempted to put the best face on the revolt five years ago also.

Which direction the next Kyrgyz government takes will have repercussions far beyond the nation’s small size and population (slightly over five million).

It could affect U.S. and NATO plans for the largest military offensive of the Afghan war scheduled to begin in two months in Kandahar province.

It could determine the future of the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, the two major potential barriers to Western military penetration of vast tracts of Eurasia.

The stakes could hardly be higher. (full long text).

(Rick Rozoff has been involved in anti-war and anti-interventionist work in various capacities for forty years. He lives in Chicago, Illinois. Is the manager of Stop NATO international). /

Also from Rick Rozoff:

- Kyrgyzstan And The Battle For Central Asia, April 8, 2010.

- War In Afghanistan Evokes Second World War Parallels, April 7, 2010.

- Mongolia: Pentagon Trojan Horse Wedged Between China And Russia, March 31, 2010.

For more go down on his blog Stop NATO.

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