Sunday 16 December 2018


CSTO. Security potential and dimensions

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In modern geopolitical conditions the Eurasian macroregion becomes the center of factor interactions of various groups of actors at both the extra-regional and regional levels. The regions of the South Caucasus and Central Asia have become key components of various multimodal alliances entering this zone.

At the same time this zone became the point of intersection of geostrategic and military-political interests of the leading world powers - the USA, the Russian Federation and the PRC. And if these territories are the basis for geo-economic integration processes for Russia and China then for the USA is the spread of influence in this area to ensure deterrence of competing states taking into account the border situation with the sub regional zone of the Greater Middle East and the "Afghan zone".

Along with the problem of geopolitical confrontation the challenges remain topical for the regions within this zone related to instability and frozen conflicts as well as terrorism, extremism, drug trafficking and the activities of illegal armed groups.

Each of the parties is building its own bloc model: the US and its allies through involving the structures and resources of the North Atlantic Alliance in the framework of multi-level systems of bilateral agreements as well as programs such as "Partnership for Peace"; Russia, China and others developing the systems of different levels of unification of the Unified Energy System and the SCO ensure a "parity zone" through national military and political components in particular the Collective Security Treaty Organization, which actually ensured acceptable military and political integration at the CIS level supporting the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.

How long the Afghanistan controlled chaos will last ?

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Experts and political scientists of many countries conduct constant geopolitical research on existing problems in the world. Afghanistan is a problem that already seemed to be solved but there are obstacles preventing it.

The important role of Afghanistan in Central Asia is a hindrance to world powers

The beginning of any geopolitical research is the consideration of the geographical position of the state. Afghanistan is not an exception as the geography of this country is central attention to most studies of expert communities. Given this fact and also the neighborhood with Pakistan, Turkmenistan, Iran, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan it is necessary to note the role that Afghanistan could play as a commercial and energy center in the future.

However such a perspective contradicts the plans of the world states. One of them is the United States, which has been in the country for many years and controls any integration of regional powers in Eurasia. According to some information in the Ministry of Defense and in the State Department of the USA the five main Central Asian states are grouped together with Russia under the name of Eurasia while Afghanistan is in the South Asia section.

Azerbaijan military budget 2018

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According to Western experts the energy prices decline on the world market forced the Azerbaijani government to cut spending on the defense industry, which once again confirms the dependence of the country's economy on oil and gas resources.
The Azerbaijani economists considered that the fall in the price of oil by $ 1 would entail a deficit in the state budget amounting to about $ 7.6 million (at the current exchange rate). So according to the results of May 2017 oil production in Azerbaijan amounted to 3.3 million tons, which is compared to May 2016 as a production declination rates of 276,000 tons.

In general the results of January-May 2017 oil production in the country amounted to 15.9 million tons, which is 1.6 million tons (9.2%) less than for the corresponding period of 2016.

Average daily oil production in Azerbaijan taking into account the agreements with the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) in January 2017 amounted to 793.9 thousand barrels in February - 776.4 thousand, in March - 733.3 thousand, in April -781.1 thousand, in May - 785.3 thousand barrels of oil. Thus Azerbaijan fully fulfilled its obligations to reduce daily production at the level of 35 thousand barrels within the framework of the agreements.

The US military expansion in Afghanistan

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According to a number of experts from different countries the United States authorities are actively preparing for the deployment of new military bases on the territory of the northern provinces of Afghanistan, which will accommodate an additional military contingent of the US armed forces.

According to Afghan media in the above military bases there will place US ground forces with 200 to 1,000 servicemen.

At the same time the command of the armed forces of the United States has not been determined with the number of military bases planned for deployment in northern Afghanistan.
Command of a group of US troops in Afghanistan is considering the deployment of new US military bases in the provinces of Baghlan and Faryab.

Israel intensions in Central Asia

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There is no longer questioned that the influence on geopolitical strategies formation and foreign policy of the states of the Central Asian region (CAR) by "big players" as the USA, Russia, China, Turkey, Japan and South Korea. But it is hard to say Israel as a "heavyweights" state in the context of solving tasks in the CAR countries. However the country's leaders are trying to increase its weight in this region. What can this Middle Eastern country offer and what interests does the leaders of this country have in the CAR?

Israel is worldwide known for advanced technologies and medicine and this is the key to starting cooperation with many countries not excluding the country of the CAR. Thus the Center for International Cooperation (MASHAV) is actively engaged in similar projects in secular non-Arab Muslim countries. It is worth saying that the Arab countries are interested in the region especially Saudi Arabia like Iran. The Central Asia countries together with Middle East are members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) whose unofficial leader is Saudi Arabia. Israel has always wanted to expand its relations with countries that have non-Arab Muslim populations given the conflict with a number of Arab countries and Iran. However the unity of the CAR countries including Tajikistan under the auspices of the OIC can prevent Israel from doing this. In this regard it is easy to guess that Iran and similar Arab countries are competitors of Israel in the CAR. The expansion of their influence in the region is treated by the Israel as a direct threat to the security of the country.

Is the new US strategy aimed at fighting terrorism?

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Nowadays the situation in Afghanistan is complicated by the continuing struggle of the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) with Taliban troops, militants "Vilayatu Khorasan" and other terrorist groups located on the territory of the Afghan Republic.

"Taliban" or ISIL. Who is stronger?

The Taliban and their ideology are authoritative components throughout Afghanistan. The reason for their credibility is the continued support of their neighbors (Pakistan). In addition this Islamist movement in Afghanistan among Pashtuns in 1994 has a large number of adherents within the country mainly a conservative part of the Afghan population.

The Taliban was at the head of Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001 ("Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan"). This was even diplomatically recognized by three states: the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. This group has competent leaders not fanatical Islamists. An example of this that the Taliban civil court system is considered more transparent and quicker than the Afghan courts marked by their corruption. Afghani people would have met positively the inclusion of the Taliban in the political life of the country to solve some conflict. The Taliban does not aim at solving geopolitical tasks outside the country as their goal is Afghanistan.

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