Chain of mountains in extreme southwest of Asia, just over the Arabic peninsula. Highest point : Mount Elbrus (5642 m). Known to be one of the hottest spots of geopolitics on planet Earth, pretty much like the Balkans. Countries in this region include Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia (not the American state) and many smaller republics of Russia - which tend to be quite a headache for the Moscow government these days.

Often called simply The Caucasus this mountain range is located between the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea covering parts of several nations. Southern Russia has part of the mountains (along with Chechnya) in the north of the region. Azerbaijan, Armenia, and Georgia (Not to be confused with the US State) hold the southern side of the mountains and are bordered again on mountains on their south side as well.

Somewhat like the Balkans it seems at times that every little valley would like to be an independent republic. This is due in part to the spoon shape of many of the valleys, making it very difficult to move from place to place.

How Caucasian, the term for people living in these mountains, came to mean generally anyone of fair skin and of Indo-European ancestry is a long confused story. Apparently there was a German scientist whose specialty was the study of human races. Well this ethnographer thought that the languages of the region were more unchanged and ancient that most others. He came up with a theory that all white races were descended from them in one way or another. This was back in the high days of human eugenic theory. He also though they had such perfect complexion and bone structure among the Georgians and so he made that the standard he measured whiteness by if I am not mistaken. That is why Caucasian is often used to mean white.

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