CHINA AND THE SHANGHAI COOPERATION ORGANIZATION AT FIVE

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By Stephen Blank

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It is an established fact among U.S. officials: the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) is China’s primary multilateral instrument to implement its openly anti-U.S. policy in Central Asia. The recently concluded fifth anniversary summit of the SCO in Shanghai confirmed its anti-U.S. proclivities. The SCO’s communiqu� reiterated its opposition to the “interference in other countries’ internal affairs,” a common euphemism used to describe Washington’s calls for increased democratization in Central Asia. “Models of social development should not be ‘exported,'” the joint declaration stated, implicitly reflecting the assessment by Moscow and Beijing that U.S. non-governmental organizations were behind the opposition movements and the “color revolutions” in Central Asia (People’s Daily, June 15). In addition to its ideological inclinations, however, the summit also revealed interesting dynamics within the organization as well as Zhongnanhai’s policy dilemmas in dealing with Central Asia.