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VOL. 3 (2) - SPRING 2009              Download Full Issue


Note from the Editor-In-Chief (p. 120)
 

Research Papers

Implications of Kosovo, Abkhazia and South Ossetia for International Law: The Conduct of the Community of States in Current Secession Conflicts (pp. 121-142)
by Heiko Krueger

The European Union’s Eastern Partnership: Chances and Perspectives (pp. 143-155)
by Marcin Łapczyński

Democratic Transition in Georgia: Post-Rose Revolution Internal Pressures on Leadership (pp. 156-171)
by Jesse David Tatum

Decision-Making and Georgia’s Perpetual Revolution: The Case of IDP Housing (pp. 172-180)
by Till Bruckner

Victimisation of Female Suicide Bombers: The Case of Chechnya (pp. 181-188)
by Nino Kemoklidze

Dutch Disease in Uzbekistan? A Computable General Equilibrium Model of Effects of Foreign Investment into Uzbekistan's Gas Sector (pp. 189-209)
by Michael P. Barry

How the West Was Won: China’s Expansion into Central Asia (pp. 210-218)
by Henryk Szadziewski
 

Comments

Split in the Russian Political Tandem Putin-Medvedev? (pp. 219-226)
by Eberhard Schneider

Georgia & Russia: The “Unknown” Prelude to the “Five Day War” (pp. 227-232)
by Martin Malek
 

Book Review

“Handbook of International Humanitarian Law” by Dieter Fleck (pp. 233-236)
Review by Pierre-Emmanuel Dupont
 

Interviews

“Federalization Remains the Best Way for Georgia to Avoid Outbreaks of Further Internal Disputes” (pp. 237-241)
Interview with Prof. George Hewitt, London School of Oriental & African Studies, UK


 

Note From The Editor-In-Chief (p. 120)

Since the publication of the Winter 09 issue events in the Caucasus and the wider region have continued to shift, which underlines yet again the region’s critical importance for the wider world. The beginning of Barack Obama’s tenure as President of the United States has opened up new possibilities for geopolitical shifts in the Caspian region, as he seeks to press the reset button with Russia and offer a hand to Iran. The course of these developments will have a profound effect in the Caucasus and Central Asia, even without the myriad of factors in play in the region. Turkey has reasserted itself in the Caucasus, moving towards rapprochement with Armenia and alienating Azerbaijan. The Nabucco pipeline project looks increasingly doomed, even as Turkmenistan seeks to free itself from Russian control. Meanwhile, the conflict in Afghanistan has continued to cast its ripples over the regionread more

 

Research Papers

Implications of Kosovo, Abkhazia and South Ossetia for International Law: The Conduct of the Community of States in Current Secession Conflicts (pp. 121-142)
by Heiko Krueger

The objective of this article is to examine whether the current conduct of the community of states in the cases of Kosovo, Abkhazia and South Ossetia has any implications on international law. This question arises particularly in the case of Kosovo, since many states have recognised its separation from Serbia. Can the conduct of the community of states be used as a legal precedent by other groups seeking separation, e.g. in Azerbaijan, China, Georgia, Moldova, Spain or Ukraine? What if more states were to recognise Kosovo in the future? The focus of this paper will be to consider the implications of the conduct of the community of states on the interpretation of international treaties and customary international law. In this respect, the conduct of states in the cases of Abkhazia and South Ossetia in August 2008 will also be taken into accountread more

 

The European Union’s Eastern Partnership: Chances and Perspectives (pp. 143-155)
by Marcin Łapczyński

The European Union has recently introduced its Eastern Partnership initiative (EaP) as a tool to enhance the co-operation and support reforms in its Eastern neighbourhood. The initiative, jointly presented by Poland and Sweden, was an answer to the French efforts to promote and strengthen the Mediterranean Union. The initiative involves several important steps to encourage countries such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine to build a stable and valuable relationship with the EU. With the Czech EU Council’s presidency the project has become a foreign policy priority of the Union and a lot of effort has been put in the launching and preparations. Nevertheless, the EU should not take for granted the partner countries’ support and interest in the EaP and should permanently work towards ensuring that the offer presented to the partners is attractive and suited to provide assistance in reformsread more

 

Democratic Transition in Georgia: Post-Rose Revolution Internal Pressures on Leadership
(pp. 156-171)

by Jesse David Tatum

This article analyses Georgia’s post-Rose Revolution progress in the process of democratic transition up until the August 2008 war. The focus is on the role that the incumbent administration plays in this process, and on the internal pressures that the leadership currently faces. In the light of some important studies in the democratisation field, this article considers the extent to which President Saakashvili and his government represent a clear change in the political order vis--vis his two predecessors. With regard to the crises in November 2007 and August 2008, this period in Georgia’s development as a nation will have a profound impact on its population, its neighbouring countries and an area of the world in close proximity to the EU. While Saakashvili has made admirable progress overall, he still retains a surfeit of power detrimental to Georgian democracyread more

 

Decision-Making and Georgia’s Perpetual Revolution: The Case of IDP Housing (pp. 172-180)
by Till Bruckner

Observers tend to enthuse about Georgia’s leadership or damn it, but such black-and-white views do little to explain what is really going on in the country. Examining the government’s recent efforts to provide housing to those internally displaced by the August 2008 conflict with Russia sheds light not only on the housing program itself, but on contemporary Georgian politics in general. In particular, four traits characteristic of the ruling United National Movement’s revolutionary governance are brought into focus: informal decision-making, fluid roles, heroic action, and vanguard politicsread more

 

Victimisation of Female Suicide Bombers: The Case of Chechnya (pp. 181-188)
by Nino Kemoklidze

While arguing about why women fight, many believe that these women are yet other victims in the hands of ruthless men, while others emphasize the seriousness of a particular conflict where even women are driven towards taking up arms, seen as a last resort in the eyes of many. Few, if any, confront this ever present “myth” of victimisation of women who choose radical forms of fighting. This paper will challenge this viewpoint and, based on the case of the so-called Black Widows of Chechnya, will argue that women can take up roles other than that of a victim in the battlefields; and that they are capable of fighting for a purpose other than that of a personal tragedy and/or family bereavementread more

 

Dutch Disease in Uzbekistan? A Computable General Equilibrium Model of Effects of Foreign Investment into Uzbekistan's Gas Sector (pp. 189-209)
by Michael P. Barry

Uzbek lawmakers have been working hard to attract foreign investors into exploration and production in Uzbekistan. This paper will describe these laws and use a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model to analyze their macroeconomic effects on Uzbekistan and beyond. This analysis does not attempt to quantify the causal relationship between Uzbek laws and the amount of investment. Instead, the focus of the paper is closer to the following questions: successful or not, is the Uzbek campaign to attract foreign investment a good idea at all? Who wins and who loses? Results of the model suggest that Uzbekistan would be better off overall from foreign investment in its natural gas sector, due mostly to improvements in overall production efficiency and terms of trade. However, the gain in the natural gas sector would come at the expense of production and net exports of non-petroleum related industriesread more

 

How the West Was Won: China’s Expansion into Central Asia (pp. 210-218)
by Henryk Szadziewski

In the People’s Republic of China, the Great Western Development Drive has been promoted as a solution to the economic inequalities that exist between the eastern and western regions of the country. Although the initiative has overt economic objectives, these are accompanied by political objectives of internal security in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, an area also known as East Turkestan. The Great Western Development Drive also works in conjunction with China’s economic and political objectives for the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. As a bridge to the markets of Central Asia, the Great Western Development Drive in East Turkestan has built an infrastructure with which China can export goods and import natural resources. Greater economic cooperation between Central Asia and China has also permitted the silencing of Uyghur dissent in Shanghai Cooperation Organization member states. The net result of China’s expansion into Central Asia for Uyghurs in the region and in East Turkestan has been economic and political marginalization, most notably in the visible exclusion from the policies and projects of the Great Western Development Driveread more

 

Comments

Split in the Russian Political Tandem Putin-Medvedev? (pp. 219-226)
by Eberhard Schneider

There are signs that the Russian President Dmitry Medvedev is gaining his own profile rather than wishing to remain forever Vladimir Putin’s hand-picked successor. The catalyst for this process is the financial and economic crisis. Different individuals and groups surrounding the president and the prime minister play an important role in this process, since they try to ensure that their patrons demonstrate a greater political profile. Putin’s dilemma: If he remains in office, he runs the risk of being held responsible by the people for his government’s failure to properly address the crisis. This could lead to the loss of his reputation, which could cost him the election victory in the case of his renewed candidacy for the presidency in 2012. If he resigns as prime minister, he would disappear from the public eye, which would make his election as president impossible. This would mean that Medvedev would re-run for the presidency in 2012 and get re-elected for another five-year term in accordance with the latest constitutional amendmentread more

 

Georgia & Russia: The “Unknown” Prelude to the “Five Day War” (pp. 227-232)
by Martin Malek

The Russian Armed Forces not only expelled invading Georgian troops from the separatist region South Ossetia, but they also entered Abkhazia and marched deep into Georgia proper over the course of the “five day war” in August 2008. The following report analyses Russia’s military preparations since spring 2008, an aspect hitherto almost unknown among politicians, the media and the public in Western Europe and North America. They included the shooting down of a Georgian drone by Russian fighter jets over Abkhazia, a massive increase of Russian “peacekeeping troops” along the Georgian-Abkhaz armistice line, the deployment of Russian railway troops to Abkhazia and the “Kavkaz 2008” military exercises. These developments occurred against the backdrop of political events, such as demands made by the Russian State Duma to recognise South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states, Russia’s decision to withdraw from the CIS economic embargo against Abkhazia and NATO’s refusal to offer membership to Georgiaread more

 

Book Review

“Handbook of International Humanitarian Law” by Dieter Fleck (pp. 233-236)
Review by Pierre-Emmanuel Dupont

In the Handbook’s Introduction, Dieter Fleck mentions that the first edition, published in German in 1994, was built upon the German Armed Forces’s (Bundeswehr) Manual of international humanitarian law (IHL), an account of Germany’s long-standing involvement in the implementation of International Humanitarian Law. Yet the present edition, ‘no longer connected to a single national manual, […] aims at offering a best practice manual to assist scholars and practitioners worldwide’read more

 

Interviews

“Federalization Remains the Best Way for Georgia to Avoid Outbreaks of Further Internal Disputes” (pp. 237-241)
Interview with Prof. George Hewitt, London School of Oriental & African Studies, UK

CRIA: In light of a tumultuous past—but with a view to the immediate future—would you give your thoughts on national reconciliation between Tbilisi, Sukhum and Tskhinval (and other parts of Georgia), and how progress might be best achieved?

Hewitt: Sukhum and Tskhinval as metonyms for the Abkhazians and (South) Ossetians respectively, would strenuously object to the implication that Abkhazia and South Ossetia represent “parts” of a Georgia wherein they could be parties to any “national” reconciliation. Tbilisi has had no say in South Ossetian affairs since the war instigated there by Georgia’s first post-communist leader, the late Zviad Gamsakhurdia, ended with the Dagomys Agreement in June 1992, just as it has had no say in Abkhazian affairs since the war imposed on the republic by Eduard Shevardnadze on 14th August 1992 ended with the expulsion of Georgian forces at the end of September 1993read more

       
 
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