Georgia is set to test its own domestically designed and built artillery system on March 3. In scheduling the event the day before Russia’s presidential election, officials in Tbilisi appeared to be firing a figurative shot at their nemesis – the Kremlin’s paramount leader Vladimir Putin.
Amid the release of a report detailing the widespread and systematic use of torture in Uzbekistan, the US Defense Department may make a major donation to Tashkent’s security establishment. Under the plan currently being considered, Uzbekistan would obtain equipment that the Pentagon deems redundant or outdated for use by the American military.
Russian officials think the Collective Security Treaty Organization, a bloc of friendly ex-Soviet republics, can develop into a security grouping on par with NATO. But recent CSTO military exercises show that Moscow lacks a clear vision for how to utilize the alliance.
In what appears to be an awkward attempt to humor Uzbekistan, the German Ministry of Defense has classified information already in the public domain concerning Berlin’s payments to Uzbekistan for the use of a military base in Termez, near the Afghan border.
Armenian analysts say Georgia’s recent move to block a transit route for Armenia-bound Russian military supplies did not come as a surprise. But officials in Yerevan still aren’t commenting on how Russia and Armenia will get around the transit corridor’s closure.
Azerbaijan’s recent move to indefinitely postpone joint military exercises with the United States is a sign that bilateral strategic ties are stagnating, analysts in Baku believe. Some wonder whether the social-network-inspired unrest that has swept the Middle East and North Africa, and which has also touched Azerbaijan, played a role in Baku’s decision.