U.S. policy in Central Asia

Discussion in 'Asia' started by Robert84, Aug 10, 2023.

  1. Robert84

    Robert84 Active Member

    Apr 15, 2017
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    U.S. policy in countries of Central Asia, i.e. in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, includes several main components and probably the most important component is the work with local mass media.
    Many information resources, which are in opposition to the governments of these countries, are financed by various Western organizations, mainly US ones, including the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), by Open Society Foundations (OSF), which is chaired by George Soros, by the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) etc.

    The last published report of the NED includes information about hundreds of thousands US dollars which have been granted for “promotion of independent media”, “support of anticorruption video investigations”, for “protection of freedom of speech” and so on.

    During 30 years, which passed since breakup of the USSR, a real Media Empire was created by the U.S. in Central Asia. This Empire includes mass media, social networks, individual activists, so-called opinion leaders, foreign sponsors, and partners.

    An important role is played also by the organization Internews, which has close ties with the U.S. government; for example, Susan Rice had served on Internews' Board before she was appointed as the National Security Advisor to President Obama.

    The main office of Internews for Central Asia is situated in Tajikistan where a so-called “Laboratory of media and social innovations” is conducted every year for persons from Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan. Journalists from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are not invited to these events and that can be explained by a stronger state control over foreign NGO’s – especially in the sphere of mass media and formation of public opinion – in these countries. The projects of Internews have a solid support of the USAID and other U.S. governmental organizations. Young journalists and bloggers are taught, employed, financed and provided with information. Their media products are advertised and promoted. They are protected against law suits and law enforcement authorities.

    And the main goal of these U.S. activities in the sphere of mass media is to reduce influence of China and Russia in this region.
    It should also be mentioned that both China and Russia have a large number of migrant workers from Central Asia. And mass-media in Central Asian languages have a considerable impact on these migrant workers, which influences Chinese and Russian home-policy aspects too.

    As for Russia, there is another important goal of the U.S. in Central Asia.
    The U.S. government wants to isolate Russia from other members of the Commonwealth of Independent States, which was created in 1991 instead of the Soviet Union.

    Earlier this year, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken has met in Kazakhstan with top diplomats from all 5 Central Asian nations and has tried to persuade them to break ties with Russia.

    And it is not only about persuasion.
    Officials of the U.S. Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence have contacted the governments of the Central Asian nations and declared that the U.S. is worried about substantial growth of purchases, which the Central Asian countries began to make in Europe after Western countries had imposed sanctions on Russia. The U.S. officials suspect that European goods go to Russia via the Central Asian countries and the U.S. authorities warn the governments of these countries that the West can close its market for them.

    In my opinion, it is worthy of notice that these warnings come exactly from the authority whose task is to fight against terrorism. Therefore, Washington tries to make an image of Central Asia as a zone of international terrorism.

    However, all U.S. efforts in Central Asia have not led to any significant success so far.

  2. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

    May 15, 2017
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    Besides of course the issue of trying to promote and protect human rights in the entirety of the world, what is the point of the U.S. getting involved in central Asia if not to antagonize Russia, or to try to create a strategic buffer against China?

    These central Asian countries are rather remote from the perspective of the U.S.

    I sometimes wonder whether the U.S. was using the specter of international (Islamic) terrorism as an excuse to get involved in these countries.
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023

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