Charisma is a crucial component of a politician's appeal to voters. But there's more than one way to inspire confidence.
With China’s rapid rise as a global economic power, it’s become increasingly fashionable to talk about reviving the Old Silk Road: the interlocking series of routes — dating back to pre-Christian times — along which merchants, pilgrims and soldiers travelled from East to West.
The latest person to talk romantically that period is Chinese President Xi Jinping, during his first visit of neighboring Central Asian states in September.
Although they have historically come under Moscow’s influence, the ex-Soveit republics are increasingly seen as strategically important for Beijing.