Kyrgyzstan is really coming to a turning point. Any further deterioration in its political conditions will justifiably earn it the label of an authoritarian state. Many already consider it to be one, although most would grant that it is the softest of the region's authoritarian regimes.
The Process of democracy building in Kyrgystan has faltered. Kyrgyzstan must open up again politically and work toward greater economic transparency both through the creation of an independent judiciary and through a more directed and far reaching campaign against corruption.
The United States cannot afford to disengage from Central Asia, as September 11th so clearly demonstrated. Further, unlike other authoritarian regimes closer to Europe, Belarus for example, Kazakhstan is in particular need of U.S. attention. U.S. engagement must include working not only with leaders and regimes but also with ordinary citizens.
Democracy Promotion and Conflict Prevention Roundtable
The term "political reform" is used in numerous ways-both inside and outside the Chinese government, leading to great confusion over its meaning. The best way to understand political reform in China is to survey the various perspectives held by the "ruling elite."
The new US military presence in Uzbekistan is one more sign of how the dominant geopolitical paradigms of the last half of the twentieth century are no longer operative. The Cold War and its aftermath post-Cold War period are at an end.
The most likely outcome the war on terrorism might bring about in Central Asia is a temporary amelioration of the key challenges facing the region that would produce a tenuous stability.
Roundtable on the rule of law at the Carnegie Endowment