The meetings by heads of state in Issyk-Kul and Tashkent earlier this summer showed clearly that America’s abrupt departure from Afghanistan last year and its long-term neglect of Central Asia did not mark the end of history. Quite the contrary.
Whoever emerges from the inevitable turmoil in Russia, he, she, or they will have to address the open wound that Putin’s Ukraine gambit has opened in the Russian polity itself.
A coming infrastructure conference could lay the groundwork for a new strategy in the region.
A more integrated and cohesive Central Asia that includes Afghanistan will do more than anything else in sight to render it stable and predictable.
This Spring, the Trump administration formally released its official strategy for Central Asia...and made clear that it views Central Asia as a world region where the United States has intrinsic economic and security interests.