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GPHY 101 Lecture Notes - The Great Game

Course Code
GPHY 101
Anne M C Godlewska

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- Central Asia
- Great game played b/w British and Russian (1813-1907)
- USA interested after Russians invaded Afghanistan
- Lush irrigated valleys repeatedly invaded
- Irrigation: snow melt to irrigation canals with environmental consequences (draining lakes)
- Russians expanding west, east, south
o Supremely successful imperial power
o Interested in minerals and cotton
o Military force strong and resettlements
- Stans became manufacturers/producers of cotton
o Transported to Russia and controlled by them
- Uprisings during famine resulting of war
o Conscription caused people in Stans to flee to China
o Area deeply marked by Stalin’s “divide and conquer”
Forced collectivization of cattle
Ethnic division by horrible borders resulting in tension
Suppression of religion
o Soviets also brought:
Mass education
Equal rights to women employment
Islamic Extremism
- Mosques were shut down, Qu’ran forbidden and ceremonies banned
- Collapse of soviet reign brought proverty
- Aid came from Muslim countries like Saudia Arabia and Pakistan
o Drug trade and arms smuggling
o Islamic extremists
Corruption and Power
- Government only cared about their power and peace
- Poverty uncared for and roads unmaintained
Oil and the Great Game
- Wealth is not with population
- Chevron trying to bring oil from Kazakhstan to market avoiding Russian pipeline tolls
- Stans feared and too deeply invested in Russia so deals were made secretly
- China and EU interested in Area as well
o EU wanted to cut out Russia so no dependence on them
- Poor quality gov’t, few resources and a lot of players
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