by Mahir Khalifazadeh, Ph.D,*
The article reviews the key priorities of President Obama's 'reset' policy with Russia. The author analyzes the impact of the 'reset' policy on the South Caucasus. The region's strategic importance is emphasized for U.S. policy towards the Great Middle East and the post-Soviet space. The author discusses the failure of the "Russia reset" policy in improving America's interests particularly in the South Caucasus. The priorities of Putin's doctrine and the implications of the Crimean crises for the South Caucasus are evaluated as well. The author urges for new U.S. initiatives to enforce peace, international borders and America's strategic interests in the South Caucasus and Central Asia.
Since the collapse of the USSR, the South Caucasus has become an arena for the powerful struggle between the West and Russia. The South Caucasus is of great importance for its geostrategic location and its access to Caspian's energy resources. Geographically, the region is a land bridge between the Black and Caspian Seas. Its proximity to the Middle East increases the South Caucasus' importance for both the U.S. and Israelis Middle East policies. The South Caucasus is also a sensitive region of the former Soviet Union space. The large energy resources of the Caspian increase the South Caucasus' role for Europe's and Israel's energy security.