Kazakhstan: Is New Military Doctrine Response to Russia or the West?

by Almaz Kumenov  In late September, Kazakhstan adopted its fifth military doctrine. The document outlines a shift in strategic thinking that seems, at least in part, designed to respond to potential threats emanating from Kazakhstan’s neighbor and ally, Russia —… Continue Reading  

Azerbaijan: Suffocation of NGOs Raises Questions About Donor Strategy

by Durna Safarova The Azerbaijani government has forced the local chapter of the global corruption watchdog Transparency International to scale back its activities in the South Caucasus nation. The move is part of a long-running crackdown on the country’s civil-society sector.… Continue Reading  

The New York Attack, Trump’s Outbursts, and Misconceptions About Terrorism

by Paul R. Pillar Donald Trump’s tweets in response to the terrorist attack along a bike path in Manhattan demonstrated some of what we already knew all too well about the president, but they also reflected more widely shared and… Continue Reading  

The Many Flavors of Persian in Eurasia

by James Pickett Is Tajik a dialect of Persian? Or a language in its own right? What differentiates it from varieties prevalent in Afghanistan and Iran? There is no easy answer to these questions because the very categories we use… Continue Reading  

Tajikistan: Saudi Revenge in Iran’s Backyard?

by Eldar Mamedov According to those who seek to contain Iran, it is supposedly building a new Persian empire in the regions where it has influence—the Persian Gulf, the wider Middle East, and Central Asia. Such accusations, besides mistakenly assuming… Continue Reading