Russian Influence and Kyrgyz Weakness: A Realist Understanding of Kyrgyz National Interest
Smart, Jason Jay
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This thesis explores whether the Kyrgyz Republic has operated in its national interest during the post-September 11, 2001 era by examining the Kyrgyz government’s decisions in the cases of the American and Russian military installations leased within Kyrgyzstan. It uses a Realist approach to “national interest” and explains whether and how the Kyrgyz Republic’s decisions increased its defense capabilities, improved its financial situation and created a better political environment in which to operate. The study employed news sources in English and Russian, recently released U.S. State Department diplomatic cables, qualitative analyses by regional experts and quantitative data from government bodies. I contend that it is consistent with Kyrgyz national interest to close the American base while maintaining the Russian military presence; the Russian Federation’s support of the Kyrgyz Republic is apparently conditional on expulsion of the American bases. The analysis suggests that a more thorough understanding of how the Kyrgyz Republic conceptualizes its national interest can help international policy makers formulate more effective strategies to collaborate with it.
- Masters Theses