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By Tom Everett-Heath

The 5 valuable Asian States of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan stand on the crossroads of worldwide civilization. inspired via South Asia, Iran, China and Russia, this sector which has lately burst onto the realm degree once more, guards a different id. This assortment through confirmed specialists at the region covers the dramatic Soviet interventions of the early twentieth century, and information the position of ethnicity and the contribution made by way of Islamic impulses within the means of construction the fashionable kingdom states.

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Its main aim was to promote and protect the Islamic faith, which was, in some ways, threatened more by the reformists than by the Russians. The latter had left Islam well alone, in the main, during the Tsarist period. In April 1917, the Ulema Jamiati had unsuccessfully proposed to the Kerensky government the formation of a so-called Mahkama ye Shariah to vet all legislation emanating from St Petersburg for its compatibility with Islamic Law. Their principal field of activity was the Tashkent City Council, where Sher Ali Lapin forged an alliance with the Russians to defeat the reformists led by Munavvar Qari and the Shura ye Islam.

97 A. I. Chugunov ‘Bor’ba s basmachestvom v Srednei Azii (1931–1933)’, in Istoriia SSSR II (1972), p. 100. , op. , p. 167. 99 Irkaev, op. , p. 674. -Gen. M. A. Gareev, M. V. Frunze Military Theorist (Washington, DC: Pergamon/Brassey’s International Defence Publishers, 1988), pp. 196–7. By highlighting Frunze’s stress on the importance of ‘particular locational conditions’, Gareev was undoubtedly making a veiled comment on the contemporary conflict in Afghanistan. Right up until the last years of their occupation, most Soviet offensives continued to be heralded by a heavy preliminary artillery or air bombardment, which only served to alert the Mujahedin of the oncoming attack.

24 Anonymous, ‘The Red Army in Turkestan, 1917–1920’, Central Asian Review, Vol. 13 (1), 1965, p. 33; Pipes, op. , p. 176. 25 Ann Shukman, ‘The Turkestan Commission, 1919–20’, Central Asian Review, Vol. 12 (1), 1964, p. 7. , p. 13. , p. 10. Frunze, 15 May 1920 Prikaz No. 522. , op. , pp. 555–6. [My italics] Mel’kumov, op. , p. 30. , pp. 31–2. Mao wrote that the guerrilla is like a fish who hides in the water of the surrounding population; later scholars developed the thesis, most effectively applied in British Malaya, that the job of the counter-insurgent is to ‘dry the water up’ by barriers and ‘strategic hamlets’ in order to catch the opponent on one’s own terms.

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