STRATEGIC FUNCTIONS OF AND PROSPECTS FOR THE FOREIGN MILITARY PRESENCE IN CENTRAL ASIA
Inomjon Bobokulov, Ph.D. (Law), Assistant Professor, University of World Economy and Diplomacy (Tashkent, Uzbekistan)
At all times, armed forces have dominated and still dominate the development of statehood: they protect the fundamental interests of states—sovereignty and territorial integrity—and their capabilities are widely used as an effective instrument for implementing foreign policy, determining, along with the economy and ideology, a state’s impact on world politics.
Armed forces have retained their adequacy amid the current globalization trends when traditional (military) threats are retreating, states’ security interests are growing increasingly interdependent, and the principle of their indivisibility is being widely recognized, while the world has acquired alternative forces and means to ensure security, etc. Today, however, military spending is constantly climbing, while the “responsibility zone”/“geography of functioning” of armed forces outside their state borders is widening. The national interests of the sovereign entities of world politics suggested by the very nature of international relations and security threats presuppose a wider network of military bases overseas.
The foreign military presence is directly connected with events and processes that reverberate across the world and which, at different periods in human history, have been the driving force behind progress. In the past, in the 17th-20th centuries, military bases in foreign countries were set up by colonial powers or by the great powers locked in the ideologically driven Cold War. Early in the 21st century, this trend survived because of transnational threats (mainly from international terrorism and the proliferation of WMD), as well as due to the struggle for strategic resources.
Here I will analyze the foreign military bases that appeared in Central Asia along with the “global war against terrorism” and the prospects for new military facilities in conjunction with the interests of the Central Asian states.
Aims and Tasks of Foreign Military Bases
The term “military base” is applied to an advantageously situated, in the military-strategic respect, and adequately equipped region which allows the state to deploy its armed forces and armaments on a temporary or permanent basis. Military bases are set up as bridgeheads to be used in the event of a military operation and for the purpose of material and technical backup. These are their main functions. They can be national or foreign, that is, set up and functioning in their own territories or outside them.
As a rule, the legal status of a foreign military base is determined by an international agreement which defines it as an extraterritorial facility and relieves its military personnel of criminal and civilian jurisdiction of the host country. In some cases, the personnel enjoy diplomatic immunity; on the strength of……………