Regional Power Rivalries in the New Eurasia: Russia, Turkey, and Iran

By Alvin Z. Rubinstein; Oles M. Smolansky | Go to book overview

8
Russia and Transcaucasia The Case of Nagorno-Karabakh

Oles M. Smolansky


The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict: Origins and History

In 1921, after Soviet troops overran Transcaucasia, Stalin--a Georgian-- acting in his capacity as the commissar of nationalities, ordered the incorporation of the enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh, inhabited mainly by Armenians, into the territory of the Azerbaijani Soviet republic. In 1922, the latter, along with Armenia and Georgia, joined the USSR as members of the Transcaucasian Soviet Federated Republic. In the reorganization of 1936, all three became separate union republics of the USSR.

In its most recent reincarnation, the dispute between the Armenians and the Azeris, whose historical enmity has also been powered by religious and cultural differences, erupted into the open in 1988, when the Armenian inhabitants of Nagorno-Karabakh, complaining about economic and cultural discrimination, rebelled against Baku's overlordship. Initially, they demanded autonomy and, after their request was turned down, the Armenians asserted their right to secede from Azerbaijan and, eventually, proclaimed the independence of the Nagorno-Karabakh Republic. In the wake of the dissolution of the USSR, there occurred a widespread arming of the sides involved in the conflict and it was gradually transformed into a fullfledged war. Moreover, in 1992, the Nagorno-Karabakh problem attracted the attention of outside parties interested in its outcome, among them Turkey and Iran, complicating efforts to regulate the Azeri-Armenian confron-

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Regional Power Rivalries in the New Eurasia: Russia, Turkey, and Iran
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • About the Editors And Contributors vii
  • Preface ix
  • Note xii
  • Part I- Old Rivals, New Relationships 1
  • 1: The Russian Federation and Turkey 3
  • 2: Moscow and Tehran The Wary Accommodation 26
  • Part II- Cis and Iran 63
  • 3: Ukraine and Iran 65
  • 4: Azerbaijan and Iran 93
  • 5: Iran and Tajikistan 112
  • Part III- The Turkish Factor 145
  • 6: Iran and Turkey Confrontation Across An Ideological Divide 147
  • 7: Turkey and Central Asia Reality Comes Calling 169
  • Part IV A Russian "Monroe Doctrine" In the Making? 199
  • 8: Russia and Transcaucasia The Case of Nagorno-Karabakh 201
  • 9: Russia and Tajikistan 231
  • 10: The Asian Interior The Geopolitical Pull on Russia 252
  • Conclusion 271
  • Index 279
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