The Armenia-Azerbaijan Conflict: Causes and Implications

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 1998 - History - 172 pages

Of all the violent disputes that have flared across the former Soviet Union since the late 1980s, the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict is the only one to pose a genuine threat to peace and security throughout Eurasia. By right of its strategic location and oil resources, the Transcaucasus has been and will continue to be a source of interest for external powers competing to advance their geopolitical influence in the region. Under such conditions, the possibility will remain for the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict to reignite and expand to include other powers.

The ten-year conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan has been one of the bloodiest and most intractable disputes to emerge from the breakup of the Soviet Union. Animosity that developed between the Armenians and Azeris under czarist Russian rule was fueled by the rise of a dispute over Nagorno-Karabakh, a mountainous region for which both peoples feel an intense nationalistic affinity. The attachment of the region to Azerbaijan by Stalin in 1923 became a source of deep resentment for the Armenians, and during the rule of Gorbachev, a campaign was begun to achieve the peaceful unification of Armenia and Karabakh. Azerbaijan resisted the move as a threat to its territorial integrity, and clashes that broke out soon escalated into a full-scale war that outlived the USSR itself.

Although a cease-fire has been observed since May, 1994, a peaceful settlement to the conflict has been elusive. Meanwhile, by right of both the strategic location and resources and the unique security characteristics of the Transcaucasus, major external powers--Russia, Turkey, and Iran--have sought to influence the dispute according to their geopolitical interests. With the growth of interest in the oil riches of the Caspian Sea and the increasing engagement of Western countries, including the United States, the risks and implications of renewed violence between Armenia and Azerbaijan will grow. This major study will be of interest to students, scholars, and policymakers involved with international relations, military affairs, and the Transcaucasus.

 

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Contents

Historical Origins of the Armenia Azerbaijan Conflict
1
The Development of the ArmeniaAzerbaijan Conflict to 1988
8
Notes
20
The ArmeniaAzerbaijan Conflict 19881991
25
Escalation to open Warfare
40
Notes
47
Changing Regional Dynamics in the PostSoviet Period
57
Perspectives and Interests of the Conflicting Parties
66
Notes
97
The ArmeniaAzerbaijan Conflict Since 1994
107
Recent Developments
120
Notes
125
Future Prospects and Conclusions
131
Conclusions
138
Notes
140
Appendixes
143

Notes
72
The ArmeniaAzerbaijan Conflict 19921994
77
The Meltdown of 19931994
86

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Page 167 - United States assistance under this or any other Act (other than assistance under title V of this Act) may not be provided to the Government of Azerbaijan until the President determines, and so reports to the Congress, that the Government of Azerbaijan is taking demonstrable steps to cease all blockades and other offensive uses of force against Armenia and Nagorno-Karabakh.

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About the author (1998)

MICHAEL P. CROISSANT is an Earhart Fellow in the Department of Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana University. He has published numerous articles on the southern former Soviet republics in Strategic Review, Eurasian Studies, National Security Studies Quarterly, Comparative Strategy;amp;lt;/i>, and other journals.

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