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State ErosionUnlootable Resources and Unruly Elites in Central Asia$
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Lawrence P. Markowitz

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780801451874

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801451874.001.0001

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Pathways to Failure: Tajikistan and Uzbekistan

Pathways to Failure: Tajikistan and Uzbekistan

(p.51) 3 Pathways to Failure: Tajikistan and Uzbekistan
State Erosion

Lawrence P. Markowitz

Cornell University Press

This chapter describes the transformations of state security apparatuses in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. It examines how the Soviet Union's collapse set in motion the cooptation and competition of local elites around shifting rent-seeking opportunities, leading to the fragmentation of security institutions in Tajikistan and the cohesion of Uzbekistan's security apparatus. In Tajikistan, fragmentation unfolded over four phases, leading to state failure and civil war. In Uzbekistan the regime's rent-based co-optation of local elites and expansion of its coercive apparatus contributed to its descent into corruption and repression, a term which the chapter refers to as a coercive rent-seeking state. In a period defined by anticorruption reforms, mass arrests and dismissals of political elites, unprecedented political and economic liberalization, and large demonstrations that often turned violent, local elites' long-standing patterns of access to power and wealth in each republic became openly contested.

Keywords:   state security, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Soviet Union collapse, local elites, cooptation, coercive rent-seeking, state failure, civil war, political elites

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