Western Promotion of Democracy and the Geopolitical Strategy of Russia and China in Central Asia

Ms. Bhavya Pandey

Nations influences their power and participate in the geopolitical competition through various instruments as geography, energy resource, pipeline routes, military, technological advancement and cultural influence. Central Asia is the chessboard where multiple players strategically play geopolitical game. The western countries promote democracy, human rights, development and civil society for the fulfillment of geopolitical interest. West believes in democracy in order to bring about development and political stability. Democracy and development share an intrinsic relationship. Without democracy development is a myth and they claim that Russia and China practices guided democracy. In guided democracy there is no scope for rights, liberty and civil society to flourish. On the other hand Russia and China counter western engagement in Central Asian countries. Russia and China claim before 2003 the west interfered in third world country in the name of nuclear power technology (North Korea, Iran and Iraq). However, after Iraq war west developed democracy and human rights as their new weapon to interfere in third world country to fulfill their geopolitical interest. Russia and China believe that without democracy, development can take place. Democracy is a subjective concept and it can be adopted as per local socio-economic and political environment. Therefore, Russia and China believe that each state has the autonomy to choose its political or economic path/model and no outside country can impose their models or values. The strategic partnership of Russia and China in Central Asia is based on common interest. The Central Asian countries are following their own local rules to balance the new great game between West on one hand and Russia China on the other hand. The paper will examines the Western policy of democracy promotion towards Central Asian countries and the counter balancing economic development of Russia and China. The theoretical framework of this paper will be based on rational choice theory.
Key Words: democracy, geopolitics, human rights, civil society, guided democracy, Central Asia, development.