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McGill University
Political Science
POLI 419
Maria Popova

POLI 419 East-Asian Countries  All post-soviet; most are resource-rich; majority of population are muslim. Pre-soviet clan cleavages. Weak national identity. Least ammount of nationalist mobilization. Didnt push for independence -> found themselves independent. Russian minrity groups present in all.  IDs : Nazarbaev, Niyazov (Turkmenbashi), Karimov, Rakhmonov, Shikhmuradov, Berdimuklhamedov;Akaev - Bakiev - Otunbaeva;Atambaev, Kulov. 2010, Kyrgyzstan Otunbaeva becomes interm-president.  Central asia? : why didnt democracy take off and succesfully consolidate? In comparison to baltics and even western parts of Soviet Union? All pre-conditions for democracy are absent in central asia: poor per capita; resource rich; Islam as main religion; high levels of ethnic fractionalization; little turnover in power by the elites. Presence of clans has significantly undermined democracy building (kinship networks that act as informal institution that effectively subtitutte formal institution). Politics become much about clan competittion rather than ideology and policy. Elections - count of how many people belong to each clan. Clans make it easier for corruption networks to emerge. Difficult to identify independent effect of clans. Significantly different outcomes within EastAsia, so cant for sure attribute anything to clan. Resource curse theory. The more natural resoruces u have, the less likely you are to have a democratic regime.  Revenue from natural resources allows government to appease public and thus reduce pressure for democratic transition.  Repression effect: natural resource revenue can be used to fund massive repressive apparatus.  Modernization effect: resource wealth boosts income significantly, but it doesnt affect social, economic, and cultural transformations that usual take place w/transformation. Havent gone thru modernization, just appear to have done so due to high GDP's etc.  Fish argues this as well. Kyrgyzstan lacks any natural resources, thus explains why most open. Takeaway po
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