Amity-Enmity Patterns in Central Asia


This paper examines «the amity-enmity  pattern»  among  the  states  in  Central  Asia  (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan) by content analysis. The amity-enmity pattern reflects the ideational theoretical view of Regional Security Complex Thoery of B. Buzan that it defines the kind of roles (enemy/rival/friend) the states in the region internalise and developes it into a spectrum of conflict formations (enemy), security regimes (rival), security communities (friend), respectively. The conceptualization  was  further advanced  by  K.  Oskanian  into  six  categories:   Revisionist/Status-quo conflict formation (enemy), Thin/Thick security regime (rival), Loose/Tight security community (friend). This paper aims to position the Central Asian subcomplex on the  six  categories  of  the  amity-enmity pattern. First part of the paper defines the analytical  and  methodological  frameworks for  «the  amity- enmity pattern» in the Central Asian subcomplex, a subcomplex in the unipolar Russia-centered Regional Security Complex. The second part attempts to analyze the amity-enmity  pattern  of  the  subcomplex through  content  analysis,  examining  30455  news  articles  published  in  Central  Asian  states  for  the  last 10  years  (from  January 2007 to  December  2016).  Steps  of  the  analysis  follows  the  scheme  of «Structurization of information array for qualitative content analysis» by K. Borishpolets. At the level «A» of analysis, the number of news sources were categorized into three  text  blocks:  1)  inter-state  level  of articles, 2) inter-regional level of articles 3) domestic articles. At the level «B» of analysis, the inter-state level of articles are further classified and total six topics have resulted by frequencies: 1) Integration issues 2) Energy(gas, oil, water) issues 3) Border/territory issues 4) Drug trafficking/criminal issues 5) Radical islam issues 6) Immigration issues. At the level «C» of analysis, the amity/enmity features on each topic are examined and based on the results, this paper concludes that the formation of security culture and the role that the actors play in the Central Asian subcomplex can be defined as Lockean rivalry positioned at the range from 'Thin security regime' to 'Thick security regime'.


Central Asia; amity-enmity patter; content analysis; security regime; Regional Security Complex Theory.


Authors: Hyunjung Kim

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