Sunday, May 18, 2014

Book Reviews

From Soviet to Russian International Law. George Ginsburgs. The Hague, The Netherlands; Kluwer Law International, 1998. 420 pp.

Since the fall of the Soviet Union, the Russian Federation has made significant changes in many parts of its society, including its application of international law. Over the past two decades, there has been an emergence of doctrines and practices seeking to replace old Soviet ones. Ginsburgs takes on topics such the relationship between domestic and international law; citizenship and state succession; and cooperation with its neighbors in From Soviet to Russian International Law.

The author takes on a complex and broad topic first in addressing the doctrinal and practical issues associated with incorporating international law into Russia's domestic laws. He collaborates three parts of the process: 1993 Constitution and its references to international norms; the application of the references in the Constitution; and debate among legal scholars in the region, particularly on the language of the Constitution. Ginsburgs does a good job application and incorporation of international law in the Duma, administrative agencies, and by the courts. He also lays out a helpful outline of how treaties are negotiated and formulated. Regardless, the evidence he cites seems questionable. He speaks on how the aspirations of the courts and legislature have not met their aspirations, and states that the future does not look promising. However, his conclusions are based on happenings outside of the law, such as Russia's declining economy, and insufficient training of police and private attorneys, examples which would likely not have direct relationship with international law.

In the next part of the book, Ginsburgs addresses questions of citizenship after the break of the Soviet Union, and whether there needs to be some legal protection to ethnic Russians that reside in former Soviet Republics. He examines Russia's effort to have dual-citizenship with other successor states of the Soviet Union, and concludes that these align with international law. However, he points to the liberal extension of Russian citizenship, and how it led to an ineffective implementation. In this chapter, he primarily points on problems, and lacks any clear solution.

The next two chapters deal with Sino-Russia relations, and the implications of their joint efforts. He commends both nations on their legal arrangements being with international law, but is concerned with the vulnerability of the relationship because of geopolitical factors, as well as both nations domestic rule of law. Despite his words on the relationship, Ginsburgs speaks on agreements but never states the names, which confused me on what he was referring to during his analysis.

Although Ginsburgs' book is tailored for Russian legal specialists, it does a great job of defining the state of Russian law at the turn of the century. Of course, much has changed since its release, but some questions still linger such as how will Russia deal with ethnic Russians placed in former Soviet republics. It brings up a number of questions of the goals of international law in Russia and its suitability, while keeping in mind its long history and repeated unsuccessful attempts of "top-down" reform. In the end, I see this as a thought provoking piece on the study of international and constitutional law in Russia, particularly the formulation and implementation of policy and doctrine.

The Sanctions Paradox: Economic Statecraft and International Relations. Daniel Drezner. Cambridge, United Kingdom; Cambridge Studies in International Relations, 1999. 342 pp.

Most people say that economic sanctions do not work in international affairs. Then why has the United Nations Security Council, and many nations, continued to rely on sanctions as a tool? Daniel Drezner in his book The Sanctions Paradox: Economic Statecraft and International Relations argues that the UN and countries are eager to use sanctions when they may produce the feeblest results.

Drezner develops a "conflict expectations model" to determine the results, in which sanctions are viewed as policy gains that can be used as an advantage in future conflicts. He uses a variety of quantitative and qualitative methods to test this. He uses Russia is us as a case study as he shows that its coercion of former Soviet republics, as well as Western sanctions on North Korea and Iran to prohibit nuclear proliferation. He states that the sanctions are established on the expectation of conflict, thus why they are applied to adversaries rather than allies, though allies are more susceptible to pressure. Because allies anticipate such conflict, sanctioned states will likely not concede to pressure despite the cost. Drezner explains that adversaries are less concerned to avoid conflict with governments and institutions that impose sanctions because they expect.

However, this book is not an easy read - it has a heavy use of mathematical modeling. But I found the book to be quire interesting, particularly because of the case studies concerning Russia and its neighbors, which seems to be valuable.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Book Reviews

                                             Book Reviews

 1) Tichotsky, John, Russia’s Diamond Colony: The Republic of Sakha, Amsterdam: Harwood Academy Publishers, 2000.

 John Tichotsky’s, Russia's Diamond Colony: The Republic of Sakha is a well written work of the economic history of the Republic of Sakha since the days of Tsarist occupation to the last decades of the twentieth century. Even though Sakha's economy is the main theme of this work, it also covers other aspects of the Sakha story such as its history, geography and demography. Tichotsky's, Russia’s Diamond Colony is one of the rarest works which is written in English about the Sakha Republic. Russia’s Diamond Colony discusses in quite detail about gold, diamond and petroleum industries of the Sakha Republic. Tichotsky shows, how federal government used the natural resources of the Sakha Republic for its own advantage. Russia’s Diamond Colony discusses about the potential markets for the Sakha’s natural resources and  major threats faced by the Sakha’s mining industries. Tichotsky also tried to find reasons behind the economic backwardness of this resource rich region.

Russia’s Diamond Colony invites readers’ attention to the rough and hostile terrain of the Sakha Republic. A significant portion of the Sakha Republic lies inside the Arctic Circle. It makes some parts of the Sakha Republic are the coldest settled area of the world. Sakha Republic is also the biggest republic of the Russian Federation and it is also the biggest sub national unity of any countries of the World. Sakha Republic literally has all elements of the periodic table and is one of the biggest producers of rough diamond (around one third of the world and 99 percentage of the Russia’s production). Sakha Republic also has significant natural gas deposits. However, Sakha Republic is still remained as one of the backward regions of the Russian Federation. Sakha Republic’s population density is still low and further challenged by the disintegration of the Soviet Union. Tichotsky accuses Moscow for using Sakha as a colony for raw materials. At the same time the Russia’s Diamond Colony shows Sakha authorities better command over its resources and economy than under the Soviet Union.

The modern history of Sakha Republic began with the establishment of Yakutsk in 17th century by the Russian Cossacks. Before the advent of Russians, the territory of Sakha Republic was already occupied by the Sakha people (Yakuts). Sakha people were regarded as the descendants of the nomadic Central Asians who primarily raised horses. Sakha people appeared in this part of the world in and around 12th to 15th century. Sakha people already pushed the indigenous people of the Siberia such as Evenki, Even and Yukagir into the further north. Sakha people remained as the people of grasslands and indigenous people continued as hunters and reindeer herders. As Tichotsky points, the Russian settlers used Sakha Republic primarily as a tax collecting region (tax in the form of fur). The second part of the 19th century witnessed the arrival of gold prospectors into the region in search of gold. Still Russian population remained low primarily in the urban centers of the Sakha Republic.

However, the Soviet period witnessed major changes in the socio – economic life of the Sakha Republic. Soviets established Yakut Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic (YASSR). Stalin period also witnessed the collectivization and settlement of Sakha people and indigenous reindeer herders of the north. The collectivization of Sakha Republic took long time in comparison with other parts of the USSR. Tichotsky argues that the remoteness, large size and sparse population of the republic played a major role in this outcome. But major changes happened to the Sakha Republic in the field of industries primarily mining. Stalin promoted large scale of gold mining in the North Eastern part of the Republic. Soviet state tried to bring gold production under the government control instead of private gold prospectors. Tichotsky points towards the Communist state’s compromise with the private prospectors. Even though Sakha gold helped the Soviet state’s economy but it never brought any significant prosperity to the Sakha Republic. Krushchev period witnessed another major mineral invention in the South Western part of the Sakha Republic, diamond.

Russia’s Diamond Colony describes the importance of diamond in the economy of Sakha Republic. According to Tichotsky Sakha diamond made Russia a major player in the world diamond market. Tichotsky also shows how did Soviet government secretly traded with the South African diamond cartel, De Beer without any attention from the West. Russia remained as a trusted partner of De Beer in the entire Soviet period. But this equation changed under the new Russian Federation. The general uncertainty of the post – Soviet period negatively influenced the diamond trade too. The government of Sakha under Mikhail Nikolaev claimed more control over the natural resources of the region especially diamond. Like other republics of the Russian Federation, Sakha Republic also witnessed strong sovereignty movements during this time. Russian federal government was not in a position to control these threats, but Russian President, Boris Yeltsin was able to pacify the sovereignty movements with the help of the Sakha President, Nikolaev. Tichotsky rightly observes that the unique relationship between the federal and the republican governments under Yeltsin :

Sakha today is a hybrid between a Sovnarkhoz, and an American state in its relationship with the federal government. Sovereignty of American states and states rights are usually associated with populist rights against the elitism of the federal government. Sakha’s sovereignty, unlike that of American states, is not a populist sovereignty. Sakha’s sovereignty can be better compared to an exclusive territory granted by Russia’s President Yeltsin to a loyal ally, Sakha’s President Nikolaev (p.58).

Whatever it is Sakha Republic was more economically stable than the other republics of the Russian Federation due to its diamond wealth. Diamond also helped the republican government in bargain with the federal government. The final chapters of the Russia’s Diamond Colony discusses about the privatization in Russia in general and Sakha in particular. In this part, Tichotsky makes a serious observation that, in contrast to the West, in Russia, government still controls all profitable industries. So mining industries of Sakha is still under the government control. Tichotsky points that it discourages the foreign investors to invest in Sakha Republic. In agriculture sector only cattle were privatized and horses and reindeer are not fully privatized. Tichotsky also points towards the colonial attitude of the empowered Sakha people towards the indigenous people of the North. Tichotsky justifies his stand with the support of a popular saying that: “the middle brother (Sakha) is worse than the older brother (Russian).” Tichotsky found only other industry which can challenge diamond industry is the oil and natural gas industry. But again lack of privatization in this field also troubles the development of it to its maximum potential. Tichotsky opines that the Eastern Asia is going to be the major beneficiaries of the further expansion of oil and gas industry in the Sakha Republic. Sakha – Japan or Sakha – Korea pipeline may completely change the economy of this part of Russia.

Tichotsky makes lots of valid observation in his book, Russia’s Diamond Colony. For example, he finds that the lack of privatization is the major weakness of the Sakha industry. Underdeveloped nature of infrastructure is another weakness. But at the same time, Tichotsky appreciates Sakha government for its effort to gain a partial control over the republic’s industries. Tichotsky also warns both the republican and the federal governments about the closed nature of their economy. Tichotsky argues that the closed economy never improves the life of the common masses. Tichotsky suggests the Sakha government to utilize its diamond revenue for the improvement of the life of the citizens.

Tichotsky did a wonderful job with this largely unexploited topic. Russia’s Diamond Colony is quite comprehensive with detailed charts and diagrams. Book also has detailed appendixes too. Tichotsky’s Russian background helps him to make wonderful observations. But I feel that the recent developments under Vladimir Putin can only makes this study complete.

2 ) Jordan Bella Bychkova & Terry G. Jordan – Bychkov, Siberian Village: Land and Life in the Sakha Republic, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2001.

Terry Jordan’s Siberian Village is a study of village named Djarkhan, which is located in the Central Yakut Plain of the Sakha Republic. The author linked to the village through his wife, Bella Bychkova Jordan, an ethnic Sakha from Djarkhan. The study conducted in the middle of the 1990s when Russia was passing through a difficult time. Readers can see the reverberations of those difficulties in this work. Through Siberian Village, Terry Jordan tries to say the story of Sakha Republic in general and the village life of the Sakha people in particular. Sakha people (Yakuts) are the single largest ethnic group of the Sakha Republic. Sakha Republic also has significant Russian minority. Besides these two major groups, the northern part of the Sakha Republic is also home for ethnic groups such as Even, Evenki, Chukchi and Yukagir.

The chapter 1 of the Siberian Village gives a general introduction to the history of Sakha Republic. Here, Jordan tries to remind readers about the unique nature of Siberian lands. Russians and other non – native people find Siberia is always as a land of snow and myth. Or, in other words, a land which is exotic and foreign to them. But for natives of Siberia, their land is not at all exotic or peripheral but central to their life. Natives of Siberia find meanings to all aspects of Siberian life. The Chapter discusses the history of Sakha Republic and its various Ethnic groups. The chapter also gives an insight into the economy and political life of Sakha Republic. In this chapter, Terry Jordan reminds readers that how modern Sakha Republic is by showing the cultural life of Yakutsk, the capital of the Sakha Republic.

The Chapter 2 discusses primarily about the village called Djarkhan. Jordan describes about the major geographical features of the village such as alases (grasslands), taiga (forest), soil and settlements. The chapter also covers the various seasons of the Djarkhand and it shows how harsh is the climate of the Sakha Republic. Through this chapter, Jordan also introduces us into the ordinary life people of the village. The chapter 3 discusses the traditional life of the Sakha people. It also discusses in short about the history of Sakha people until the Soviet time. According to Terry, Sakha people believe that their origin was further south in the steppe lands. The importances for horse in Sakha life justify this notion. Then Sakha people were defeated by Buriats and it forced them to move to further north. Sakha people established themselves in the Central Yakut Plain at the expense of the Indigenous people such as Evenki. Russians followed Sakha people into the same land with their very different lifestyle and material culture. The chapter discusses about the traditional clan systems existed among the Sakha people (Sakha clans were known as aga – usa). In the traditional Sakha life, there were no villages or permanent settlements. Sakha was semi – nomadic like their Central Asian ancestors. They were a kind of Christians with very predominant Shamanic beliefs. Again Terry finds many of the Sakha people converted to Christianity for getting exemption from taxes and fur – tributes.

The Chapter 4 tells the story of Soviet period. Soviet period witnessed the collectivization and formation of various permanent Sakha villages such as Djarkhan. According to Terry most of the Sakha people found Communism and ‘Sovietization’ as another Russian experiment just as Christianity in the earlier centuries. The Soviet period completely changed the Sakha way of life. Now onwards cattle started to predominate in the life of the Sakha people instead of horses. Soviets also introduced modern agricultural techniques into the Sakha Republic and village such as Djarkhan witnessed large scale improvements in their life. Jordan describes the period between 1966 – 1991 as ‘golden age’ for the Djarkhan village. The Soviet period converted Sakha people from herders to modern farmers. Still Communism could not able to destroy the Sakha identity which is primarily based on the Sakha language and traditions.

The post – Soviet period witnessed the collapse of the economy in Djarkhan just like other parts of the Russian Federation. The Soviet collapse hit commercial farming quite badly. State farms were dissolved and ownership of animals turned into private. The commercial farming gave way to the subsistence farming. The living standard of the majority of the Sakha people came down just like other citizens of the Soviet Union. But, still few of them prospered. This general decline led to the revival of indigenous traditions which was suppressed under the Communist rule. But Jordan did not see any complete return of Djarkhan villagers to their pre- revolutionary life. But their Sakha identity is getting more recognition and respect in the post – Soviet period. Jordan also concerns about the vulnerability of Sakha villages such as Djarkhan with its low population and migration of young people. Sakha villages are the reservoir of Sakha culture and identity. In contrast, the city spaces of Sakha Republic such as Yakutsk and Mirny regarded as Rusian places. So Jordan encourages Sakha government to support Sakha villages to preserve their culture and through that the cultural identity of the Sakha people.

Jordan’s Siberian Village is really well written work with lots of photographs and maps. It gives readers clear idea about the life of a modern Siberian village. We may surprise how modern their life is. But Jordan discusses little about inter – ethnic relations of the Sakha Republic. I think that is quite important for the better understanding.   


Saturday, May 10, 2014

National Security Discourse, Legislation, and Action: Recap

               Over the past few months, I have attempted to discover and elucidate the current discourse on national security, emerging legislation, and related action taken by the government of the Republic of Uzbekistan.  The attitude of the discourse related to national security reflects the government’s anxiety of foreign and domestic threats to the stability of the state.  Recent legislation passed by the Oliy Majlis (Uzbek Parliament) generally reflects these concerns, as do actions taken by Uzbek security forces.
                As we have seen, the discourse made by President Islam Karimov warns of imminent threats to the integrity of the Republic.  Speeches urge security forces to remain vigilant and on high alert. [1]  The foreign threats President Karimov refers to are most likely an anticipated resurgence of the Taliban and Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) from Afghanistan and violence along the borders with Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.  Uzbek officials have reported that militant Islamists have begun to return to the northern region of Aghanistan Badakhshan, where they are believed to be interfering with drug interdiction and security operations. [2]  The January 2014 shooting near the ethnic Tajik Vorukh enclave between Tajik and Kyrgyz border guards is another cause for concern, as the enclave is not far from Uzbekistan’s own borders.
                The Parliament of Uzbekistan also drafted some noteworthy legislation in 2014 regarding the distribution of religious material.  In particular, the Parliament passed measures regulating the distribution, production, and importation of media materials categorized by the state as being religious in theme. [3]  The legislation requires that anyone wishing to distribute religious material in Uzbekistan must first receive permission from the Committee on Religious Affairs.  Authors, publishers, and distributors are now required to list their name, address, and quantity of media intended for distribution.  Customs officials now have the legal authority to seize unauthorized materials at checkpoints and detain those in possession of them.  With the broad scope of language used in this legislation, it is possible that the government could use this as a justification in repressing other groups and individual critics.  For example, one of the categories of “banned” material includes material which seeks to “discredit” the work of someone else. 
                Religious political movements remain a threat in the eyes of the state.  This is evident through the continued arrests of suspected members of the international political party Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT).  HT seeks to establish Caliphate (a state of Islam) in Central Asia.  The party is banned in most Central Asian states, including Uzbekistan, and arrests of suspected HT members in the country are a regular occurrence.  HT of Uzbekistan’s website frequently publishes videos condemning the government and President Islam Karimov and praying for the expedient establishment of an Islamic state in Uzbekistan. [4] 
                In 2013, the People’s Movement of Uzbekistan party leader Muhammad Solih was rumored to have published a call for armed resistance against thegovernment.[5]  Solih lives in exile in Turkey.  In March 2014, opposition group Birdamlik organized a meeting in St. Louis, Missouri, USA.  The group intends to carry out a “color revolution” similar to those seen in Ukraine, Georgia, and Kyrgyzstan in Uzbekistan.  The security apparatus of Uzbekistan must be aware of these developments, because they have been denying travel permission to Birdamlik leaders from Uzbekistan to the U.S.[6]  The state has also reportedly engaged in harassment and coercion of Birdamlik leaders, including the father of the organization’s president. [7]
                In summary, the government of the Republic of Uzbekistan appears to be concerned with a wide array of foreign and domestic developments which it considers threatening to national security.  Rhetoric and press releases from the government’s executive are the initial signal of these concerns.  Legislation passed by the Parliament and action taken by security forces indicate that the government is seeking to regulate the emergence of religious and secular political opposition

1.  Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Uzbekistan.  "Prazdnichnoye pozdravleniye zashchitnikam Rodiny po sluchayu 22-letiya obrazovaniya Vooruzhennykh Sil Respubliki Uzbekistan"  Jan. 13, 2014.
2. Central Asia Online.  "Uzbekistan prinimayet mery v svyazi s aktivizatsiyey IDU na granitse" Jan. 31, 2014.
3. Uzbekistan Parliamentary Database.  "Postanovleniye
Kabineta Ministrov Respubliki Uzbekistan
O merakh po sovershenstvovaniyu poryadka osushchestvleniya deyatel'nosti v sfere izgotovleniya, vvoza i rasprostraneniya materialov religioznogo soderzhaniya" Jan.  20, 2014.
4. Halifat News. 
"Rezhim Islama Karimova nikak ne nasytitsya krov'yu shakhidov" Jan. 7, 2014. 
Khaknazarov, Usman.   Narodnoye Dvizheniye Uzbekistana.  "Usman Khaknazarov: Islam Karimov reshil pozhiznenno ostat'sya u vlasti"  Feb 03, 2014. 
 6.  "Iz Uzbekistana na kurultay “Birdamlika” ne pushchat'!" March 24, 2014.
7. Rosbalt.  "Arest kak mest' za syna?" June 21, 2013. 

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Review of Political Islam in Central Asia: The challenge of Hizb ut-Tahrir
                In Political Islam in Central Asia, Emmanuel Karagiannis provides a comparative analysis of the activities of the Islamic political organization Hizb uh-Tahrir al-Islami (Islamic Liberation Party).  Karagiannis applies Social Movement Theory (SMT) in analyzing his research conducted on Hizb ut-Tahrir (HT) activities in Central Asian states.  For his case studies, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan are used.  Karagiannis’ central guiding questions are the following: What are HIzb ut-Tahrir’s goals and strategies in Central Asia?  Why has Hizb ut-Tahrir emerged in Central Asia?  Why does the group remain nonviolent? 
Karagiannis elaborates on the ideology and objectives claimed by HT, namely: that the Islamic law of sharia is necessary to regulate all aspects of life and society, and that this can only be realized through the establishment of a Caliphate (Islamic State).  HT finds it essential that religion and the state are inseparable.  Karagiannis outlines the planned political apparatus of the Caliphate in insightful detail, noting the inclusion of a distribution of functions generally managed by modern states.  Karagiannis also illustrates and elaborates on the current organization of HT.  In this description, Karagiannis notes the cellular structure of the organization, which resembles clandestine tactics employed by protest and revolutionary organizations since the beginning of the 20th century.  Karagiannis further elaborates on recruitment methods and hierarchy of the organization in general.
Karagiannis includes a comparative analysis of the activities pursued by HT and its legal status in his Central Asian case studies.  HT is illegal in Tajikistan, and is contrasted in this book with the legal Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan (IRPT).  Karagiannis writes of HT’s disdain for the IRPT (which it views as a collaborator with the state) and the arrests of HT members since 2001.  Karagiannis describes the extensive crackdown pursued against HT in Uzbekistan following a 1999 assassination attempt of President Islam Karimov.  In Kazakhstan (as in other Central Asian states), HT is said to have engaged in distributing literature and recruiting membership, which led the Kazakh government to outlaw HT in 2007.  It is also banned in Kyrgyzstan, though Karagiannis suggests that it is treated more lightly with the allowance of a “warning” on first offences.  Karagiannis includes that HT is banned and its members are arrested in Russia and Turkmenistan, but that the organization is growing with relatively little trouble in China and Ukraine. 
Karagiannis elucidates that HT is a Social Movement Organization (SMO) that has attracted most of its followers due to the instability inherited by state governments following the collapse of the Soviet Union.  Karagiannis applies structural-functional theory, resource mobilization theory, political process theory, and framing theory in explaining the development of HT in Central Asia.  Karagiannis asserts, however, that most social movement theories are lacking in understanding the amount of ideological appeal possessed by HT. 
In the final chapter, Karagiannis suggests that state security narratives have erroneously proscribed the organization as violent in its activities.  Karagiannis argues that in applying resource deprivation theory, HT should also be resorting to violence in much the same way that the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan did.  Karagiannis concludes the book with a series of recommended actions for policymakers, including: promotion of an inclusive democratic process, legalization of HT in all states, leave religion as a private issue, and increased international investment into the economies of Central Asia.  This book is highly recommended for anyone interested in reading a comparative case study that applies social movement theory to a political organization with a religious ideology.

Review of Creating Enemies of the State: Religious Persecution in Uzbekistan
In Creating Enemies of the State, Acacia Shields provides a narrative historical account of the origins of and methods of coercion use against political Islamic movements in Uzbekistan.  Most of the research published in the book was collected from interviews of victims and witnesses of repression and violence, as well as from court records and analysts.  In essence, Shield’s writing includes policy recommendations, ove
                Shields provides a narrative of the origins of Islamic revival and opposition movements in Uzbekistan during the 1990s.  More particularly, the section highlights the rhetoric issued by President Islam Karimov and the ways in which religious and opposition movements have been repressed.  Shields mentions the scope of state control through enforcing an “official Islam” and the selective yet widespread arrests of individuals that eventually contributed to the appearance of violent organizations such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU).  Shields also reveals the rhetoric promoted by the state, which was project through hate rallies and public denunciations from secular citizens, religious figures, and bureaucrats. 
                Shields continues to list numerous instances of unwarranted searches and detention.  Reported instances of torture, closed trials, and denial of appeals are also mentioned.  Acacia Shields provides a detailed narrative account of reported human rights violations in Uzbekistan between 1991 and 2003.  In this book, Shields reveals the state narrative regarding non-state Islamic activity and how it has been promoted by government officials and state-sponsored religious figures.  Citizens promoting Islam without the consent of the government and beyond the authority of the state-run clergy resulted in widespread arrests, torture, and disappearance.
                Acacia Shields explains the research methodology used by Shields and multiple contributors.  It also includes a series of policy recommendations to government and non-government actors: the government of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the U.S. government, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the European Union (EU), and the United Nations High Commissioner on Human Rights (INHCHR).  Shields lists roughly thirty-three recommendations to the government of the Republic of Uzbekistan.  Essentially, they recommend that the government of Uzbekistan cooperates with United Nations committees on justice and freedom of religion, improves prison conditions, cooperate with the OSCE to repeal discriminatory laws, review and release those unjustly accused of being involved in violent activities, increase transparency, and prevent torture. 
                Shields recommends that the United States take a firm stance by classifying Uzbekistan as a country of concern for religious repression.  Shields also recommends that the United States make security and intelligence aid given to Uzbekistan contingent on the Republic’s adherence to the recommendations mentioned above.  The OSCE is recommended to increase observation of protest events and informing members of the Uzbek government of rights violations.  The EU is recommended to publicly reprimand the government of Uzbekistan for violating human rights and to monitor efforts made by the government to improve the situation.  Shields recommends that the UN also monitor the situation more closely and to investigate the cases of alleged victims.  Acacia Shields’ Creating Enemies of the State is a valuable publication for anyone interesting in learning more about Islam and national security narratives in Uzbekistan, as well as how Islamic political activity has been met with human rights violations.