Regions / Europe & Central Asia
Since September 11 and the ensuing war on terrorism, Central Asia's geopolitics have been further complicated by the new military presence of the United States, whose troops are now stationed in China's and Russia's backyard.
Some call the present era one of U.S. hegemony. Others, especially in Europe, call it empire.
At one level there is a kind of donor fatigue, at another there are concerns about security in the country.
No one knows how big the problem of clandestine trafficking in radioactive materials is.
"Free and fair" elections under a military government imply continuity of military rule, not a transfer of power to an elected parliament.
Planners have to consider how to make the Loya Jirga fair and accessible to the country's largely illiterate population, and keep it from becoming a platform for tribal, political, and ethnic violence.
Why, all of a sudden, is India acting so belligerently and risking disaster?
The United States' actions speak louder than words for Indian and Pakistani leaders.
There is reason to believe nuclear capability may make the chances of war worse in South Asia.
The United States has treated the region primarily as a convenient staging base for its Afghan campaign, and all regimes have felt confident enough to use the threat of Islamic fundamentalism and al Qaeda to continue in their old ways.