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U.S. Interests In Central Asia And The Challenges To Them By Stephen J. Blank & Strategic Studies Institute
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For the United States, Central Asia is a region of both growing importance and of growing challenge. Its proximity to Russia, China, Iran, India, and Pakistan;, location as the center of the Global... More > War on Terrorism; and its large energy holdings make it a strategic region where the United States has important, some might even say vital, interests. Those interests pertain, first of all, to geostrategic realities of security, particularly in the war on terrorism. But they also pertain to energy and to the effort to support liberalizing and democratizing reforms. However, today those interests are challenged by Russo-Chinese and Iranian opposition to U.S. presence there, those governments’ and local regimes’ resistance to reform, and the revival of the Taliban in Afghanistan. Therefore we need to assess how those challenges are manifesting themselves and how America best might adapt to meet them and pursue its interests with greater success.< Less
Ukraine’s Military Between East And West By Marybeth Peterson Ulrich & Strategic Studies Institute
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America’s new allies in Central and Eastern Europe have been struggling with defense reform since the end of the Cold War. Only recently, since the Orange Revolution, has Ukraine’s... More > national political and military leadership seriously engaged the process of radical and comprehensive defense reform. Dr. Marybeth Ulrich applies the various roadmaps for reform developed in the post-communist states of Central European states to the emerging Ukrainian case. She draws upon this mixed picture to suggest a framework focused on key areas in need of reform, as well as key conditions that will facilitate the achievement of reform objectives. The result is a richly developed case study revealing Ukraine’s main strengths as well as obstacles limiting the improvement of its military capabilities.< Less

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