Central Asia short

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Information about Central Asia short
Travel-Nature

Published on March 30, 2008

Author: WoodRock

Source: authorstream.com

Central Asia:  Central Asia Slide2:  Region dominated by high mountains, barren deserts, and semiarid grasslands Low population density Long history of outside domination – it is a crossroads for east-west travel New Countries Setting the Boundaries:  Setting the Boundaries Former Soviet Republics - Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, & Turkmenistan Azerbaijan? Russia? Afghanistan? South or Southwest Asia? Mongolia, Tibet & Xinjiang? East Asia A Common Environment:  A Common Environment Physical Setting:  Physical Setting Only world region that is entirely landlocked Home to a harsh climate that is accentuated by the landscape – high mountains, extensive plains, & deep basins Central Asian Highlands:  Central Asian Highlands Result from the collision of Asian mainland and Indian subcontinent Himalayas – highest mountains in the world Slide7:  Mt. Everest – 29,035 ft. Central Asian Highlands:  Central Asian Highlands Karakoram Range Pamir Knot Hindu Kush (Khyber Pass) Kunlun Shan Tien Shan Central Asian Highlands:  Central Asian Highlands Tibetan Plateau – massive uplifted area 1,200x750 miles Ringed by mountains on N,S, & W sides and deep gorges and ranges on the east side Most of the plateau lies above 15,000 ft. Slide10:  A number of major rivers of South, Southeast and East Asia originate from Central Asia: Huang He Yangtze Mekong Salween Brahmaputa Ganges Indus Plains and Basins:  Plains and Basins Much of the region consists of plains and low elevation basins (it’s not all mountains) Deserts West of the Pamir Knot Kara Kum (Black Sands) Kyzyl Kum (Red Sands) East of the Pamir Knot Taklamakan and Gobi Deserts Grasslands run for approx. 4,000 mi. Environmental Issues:  Environmental Issues Relatively clean environment (due to low population density) Desertification Stopping the spread of the Gobi Desert Kazakhstan desertification – blame the Soviets Shrinking Lakes Region contains some of the world’s largest lakes Environmental Issues 2:  Environmental Issues 2 Caspian Sea – water siphoned off led to the exposure of 15,000 sq. mi. of lakebed Increase salinity levels impact ecosystem – fisheries – especially caviar – are impacted Environmental Issues 2:  Environmental Issues 2 Caspian Sea – water siphoned off led to the exposure of 15,000 sq. mi. of lakebed Increase salinity levels impact ecosystem – fisheries – especially caviar – are impacted Water level has increased since 1970s but this has caused new problems Environmental Issues 3:  Environmental Issues 3 Aral Sea Sources of this lake are used extensively for agricultural purposes (cotton & Rice) Uzbekistan Cotton Production Environmental Issues 3:  Environmental Issues 3 Aral Sea Sources of this lake are used extensively for agricultural purposes (cotton & Rice) By the 1970s, the shoreline was rapidly retreating “shoreline” towns now lie 40 mi. from the coast Slide18:  A stranded boat in the Aral Sea Environmental Issues 3:  Environmental Issues 3 Aral Sea Sources of this lake are used extensively for agricultural purposes (cotton & Rice) By the 1970s, the shoreline was rapidly retreating “shoreline” towns now lie 40 mi. from the coast Increased salinity Death of species in the lake Division of the lake in two Slide20:  1960 2000 Slide21:  Current extent of the Aral Sea Environmental Issues 3:  Environmental Issues 3 Aral Sea Sources of this lake are used extensively for agricultural purposes (cotton & Rice) By the 1970s, the shoreline was rapidly retreating “shoreline” towns now lie 40 mi. from the coast Increased salinity Death of species in the lake Division of the lake in two Impact upon local agriculture (salinization) Population:  Population Essentially a sparsely populated region – vast regions are uninhabited Nomadic Pastoralism is common High population densities are found in areas of good soil and dependable water Control of Afghanistan:  Control of Afghanistan Control of the mountainous terrain and passes of Afghanistan has been important throughout history Beginning with Alexander the Great in 329 B.C., a number of different people have conquered Afghanistan, none of them were entirely successful in controlling the Afghan people The major implement to invaders has been the landscape – it is dominated by the Hindu Kush (ideal for fighting a guerilla war). Matters are complicated during the winter months when snow closes mountain passes. Slide25:  Domination of Afghanistan intensified in the late 1700s The “Great Game” British vs. Russian Empires British were unable to subdue Afghans First Anglo-Afghan War (1839-1842) Second Anglo-Afghan War (1878-1880) Third Anglo-Afghan War (1919-1921) Independence 1921 Slide26:  1978 - People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA) takes control Communist reform program angered many Muslims 1979 – USSR sent in supplies and soldiers (over 120,000) to support PDPA Soviet troops unable to control much land outside of Kabul Afghan freedom fighters (Mujahideen) controlled much of the countryside 1989 – Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan Post Soviet Era:  Post Soviet Era After the Soviet withdrawal, various militia groups fought over who would control Afghanistan Taliban eventually triumphed Taliban imposed harsh religious laws and barbaric social practices Taliban harbored the source of Al Qaeda Opium Production:  Opium Production Opium production used to arm Afghan rebels By 2000, Afghan opium production consisted of ¾ of world production Opium:  Opium 2001 – Taliban clamped down on opium production 2002 – resurgence of opium production after the ouster of Taliban Lamaist Buddhism:  Lamaist Buddhism People of Tibet & Mongolia are the only people who practice this religion Lamaism is hierarchically organized – the head of the religion is the Dalai Lama Lamaist Buddhism:  Lamaist Buddhism People of Tibet & Mongolia are the only people who practice this religion Lamaism is hierarchically organized – the head of the religion is the Dalai Lama Lamaism is known for its devotion to monasticism Slide33:  The Potala Palace in Lhasa Lamaist Buddhism:  Lamaist Buddhism People of Tibet & Mongolia are the only people who practice this religion Lamaism is hierarchically organized – the head of the religion is the Dalai Lama Lamaism is known for its devotion to monasticism 1959 – Chinese invaded Tibet; Dalai Lama fled to India Religion gives people hope of their eventual independence

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