Sean-Paul Kelley | San Antonio | September 12
The Agonist – This is the first of what I hope will be many. I will do my best to update these whenever circumstances warrant with a target of at least once a quarter. The next News Guidance I expect to do is for the South Asia/Indo-Pak region.
More after the jump.
What are Putin’s motives and goals? Any basic assertions and/or assumptions that need to be re-evaluated? Is Putin pro-Western or pro-Russian in the old Slavophile tradition? Is he a new Peter the Great (as some have said) or is he something else? I think one assumption that most of us can agree upon is that he is the single most significant political force in Russia right now.
INTERNAL EVENTS AND TRENDS
Foreign Direct investment, increase and growth of the Russian technology base, democratization or creeping authoritarianism?
Do you see any recognizable trends? What, if any of this, is occuring in the US-Russia context?
Relations with Yukos and other oligarchs?
What’s happening with the Siloviki (the Saint Petersburg clan that originally supported Putin’s accession to the Presidency). Chechnya, developments, negotiations, attacks? Rebel movements in Ingushetia? Inter-clan conflict in Daghestan? Kabardino-Balkaria? Stories about reconstruction aid and corruption? Anything on the Pankisi Gorge?
EXTERNAL EVENTS AND TRENDS
The Caucasus, Chechnya, Georgia, Ossetia and Abkhazia. What’s happening here? Negotiations? Shots-fired? Creeping American influence? Is Georgia, as I have asserted recently, the key to unlocking Putin’s plan?
Central Asian States: Uzbek, Kyrgyz and Kazakhs. New basing arrangements? Developments? Deployments? Withdrawals? New Terrorist attacks in Uzbekistan? Kyrgyzstan? Kazakhstan? Any IMU sightings? How about Hizb-ut-Tahrir?
The Russian Far East and The Far East: China, the Shanghai Group, North Korea and the Six Power Talks, Oil developments in the Far East: Russia and Japan, Kazakhs and Japan, how is this playing with the Chinese?
All of this should be considered in the context of US-Russia relations as well.
Are there any recognizable trends here?
What have I missed? Any threats looming?
This is post is only for guidance. If you are interested in the region, hotlist the post and refer back to it when you are scanning and reading the news. This post can be used as a compilation thread, of sorts. But its purpose is more for guidance than anything else.