Lord Curzon famously stated “who ever controls West Asia, controls the world”. In his view this entailed the exercise of a predominant influence over the destinies of Persia and Afghanistan – a role he reserved for British India.
BIRTH OF RADICAL ISLAMIST MILITANCY
by Hassan Rizvi
Today we have many nations desperate to acquire that role? NATO and ISAF led by the USA, fighting Al-Qaeda and the Pakhtuns (Taliban). Even Russia and China are not ignoring their strategic interests in the area; and of course the traditional rivals India and Pakistan always ready to fight a proxy war in Afghanistan. This article –and a few others to follow- will look at the issues at stake today – primarily from Pakistan’s point of view. But first an over view of the make up and strategic importance of Central Asia.
CENTRAL ASIAN DEMOGRAPHY
Once upon a time not so long ago the world’s biggest Empire possessed unimaginable land, wealth and potential. However, lacking the vision to manage what it possessed; it chose the wrong friends and made the wrong enemies resulting in an inevitable humiliation at the hands of a ‘despicable band of holy warriors’. China which should have been it’s biggest helper lifted not a finger to assist; and India which should have been it’s biggest friend shed not a single tear -in fact jumped on to the opposing band wagon with glee. (more…)