Baku Lets Bygones Be Bygones
The Azerbaijani Defense Ministry has said it will come out this summer to play war games with the Americans, an event which Azerbaijan about a month ago canceled amidst hurt feelings over what was perceived as cold-shoulder treatment from US President Barack Obama's administration. Before the exercises, a joint Azerbaijani-American seminar on strategic military communications and planning will take place in Baku in mid-June. A recent letter from President Obama, sent via a high-profile courier, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, and a promise that Hilary Clinton will drop by one of these days, seem to have made the difference.
Washington, for its part, appears to blame geography for Azerbaijan's anger. Azerbaijanis, declared Gates during his visit to Baku, live in a "rough neighborhood."