The wise manipulation of a balance of power strategy, with care to avoid direct hostilities and a clear preference for diplomacy over force of arms, could in the end prove useful in dealing with Ukraine, but only if such diplomacy is based on a search for fair compromise.
A specter is haunting Washington, an unnerving vision of a Sino-Russian alliance wedded to an expansive symbiosis of trade and commerce across much of the Eurasian land mass -- at the expense of the United States.
Just as Texas is the historic result of an independent country proudly joining the United States while preserving its own and Mexican heritage, Azerbaijan is the culmination of three elemental tendencies that accentuate the pivotal nature of its geographic position.
Even from the most cynical Cold-War, money-is-money, dog-eat-dog capitalism-is-capitalism perspective, a redrawn Ukraine would be far more in the West's, rather than strictly "Russian," "ethnic" interest.
The new spring season is just around the corner, and it looks as though the new "in" color is brown. That's brown as in "brown shirts." Perhaps you thought that fascism went out of fashion in the 20th century. But there's nothing like a lingering economic crisis to bring out the vintage ideologies.
The deadly June crisis in southern Kyrgyzstan highlights the extreme fragility in Central Asia's inherently flawed post-independence nation-state structures. However, the five republics are being simultaneously courted by the U.S. military.