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Article Archive for Year 2009

Father Frosts (Santa Clauses) of Bishkek
Written by , Thursday, 31 Dec, 2009 – 18:55 | No Comment

neweurasia continues to captivate you with the most interesting photos. Today, December 31, 2009 I went to the Ala-Too Square, and took pictures of our Ayaz Atas (Father Frost/Santa Claus).

Dushanbe botanical garden, part 2
Written by , Thursday, 31 Dec, 2009 – 11:09 | No Comment

Translation of Nuraika’s post (RUS)

You’ll find part one here.

110 Read the full story »

Mars, Marx, and Martyrs: the terraforming of Central Asia
Written by , Thursday, 31 Dec, 2009 – 9:00 | 3 Comments

Editor’s note: To commemorate the coming new year, neweurasia is looking heavenward to gaze into Central Asia’s past, present, and future. H.B. Paksoy (D. Phil., Oxford University) and neweurasia’s Schwartz take an interesting spin on the question, using the theoretical terraforming of Mars as a metaphor to understand Central Asian identity.  This post is based partly upon Paksoy’s academic article, “Governance on Mars”, available here.

The colonization of Mars is not only the stuff of science fiction.  It’s actually a useful thought experiment to interpret the histories of several regions on Earth that have suffered colonialism.  When applied to Central Asia, the terraforming of Mars is actually quite illuminating.

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Dushanbe, My Love…
Written by , Wednesday, 30 Dec, 2009 – 15:03 | 2 Comments

Translation of Nuraika‘s post (RUS).

I’m in Dushanbe again! The weather is mild and welcoming, despite the snow. The sky is gray, the streets are wide, the people are good-natured and there are lots of contrasts that catch the eye. On the one hand, you still notice the legacy of the Soviet period – old cars, people in traditional clothing, etc. Read the full story »

The cennetnauts of the starry steppes
Written by , Wednesday, 30 Dec, 2009 – 6:00 | 4 Comments

 

Editor’s note: To commemorate the coming new year, neweurasia is looking heavenward to gaze into Central Asia’s past, present, and future.  Averroes, having explored Turkmenistan’s space ambitions, now turns to Kazakhstan.  “At least Turkmenistan has the right idea about outer space,” he writes, “In seeking to commercialize outer space, will Kazakhstan commercialize the Kazakh soul?”

In my last post I essentially described Turkmenistan as a country not quite with both feet on earth yet making it into outer space.  The same cannot be said of Kazakhstan, which of course is not only home to the Baikonur launch facility, but also has many of its own mighty space ambitions.  This is a country that has its feet planted firmly on terra firma — perhaps too firmly.

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Calculation and anti-calculation of the just-held parliamentary elections
Written by , Tuesday, 29 Dec, 2009 – 12:52 | No Comment

As expected by different experts parliamentary elections in Uzbekistan were recognized valid. Chairman of the Central Election Commission Mirza-Ulugbek Abdusalomov released that information later the same day (December 27), and added that 15,108,950 voters or 87.8% of all registered voters participated in the elections and, according to the article 44 of the Law on Elections to Oliy Majlis they were legal and undisputable.

neweurasia already mentioned about different surveys and one in particular by loyal to the Uzbek government Uzniform information agency. Read the full story »

Kazakhstan: Journalist murdered, professional motives excluded
Written by , Tuesday, 29 Dec, 2009 – 10:19 | No Comment

img_0411Sayat Shulembayev, 28, journalist of the news video-portal “Stan” was brutally murdered in Almaty. As “Stan” producer Michael Pak says, Sayat rented a room in the house near bus station. The murderers killed the landlord and the journalist, apparently, to eliminate the possible witness [ru]. The news portal does not link the murder with journalistic activity of the victim.
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Go East, young Turkman
Written by , Tuesday, 29 Dec, 2009 – 9:00 | One Comment
Is the Great Game moving in the East's favor?  Image of Chinese Chess by Flickr user galaxkeene (CC-usage).

Is the Great Game moving in the East's favor? Image of Chinese Chess by Flickr user galaxkeene (CC-usage).

Go west, young man, go west.  — John B. L.  Soule, 1851

In my last post I explored whether the new pipeline to China will bring the region’s leaders closer together or tear them apart.   The experts with whom I spoke — Robert Ebel, director of the energy program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington D.C, and Michael Lelyveld, a correspondent with Radio Free Asia — were largely doubtful that the situation will really change all that much.

Ebel, for one, felt that the pipeline will do little to change the geopolitical orientation of the region.  I recently spoke with Richard Pomfret, a professor of economics at the University of Adelaide in Austrailia, who is knowledgeable on Turkmenistan and has a very different view on the subject.

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Gift of the mountains
Written by , Tuesday, 29 Dec, 2009 – 9:00 | No Comment

Early last month I decided to spend the last warm day of autumn (24 C!) in Lake Issyk.  It was truly a gift of the mountains.

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Journey to the center of the Turkmen universe
Written by , Tuesday, 29 Dec, 2009 – 9:00 | 3 Comments
Cover art for OMFO's 2006 album, "We are the Shepherds".

Cover art for OMFO's 2006 album, "We are the Shepherds".

Editor’s note: To commemorate the coming new year, neweurasia is looking heavenward to gaze into Central Asia’s past, present, and future. Averroes takes a furlough into Turkmenistan to examine the legacy of Turkmenbashi’s dreams of putting Turkmen into space.  What he finds may surprise you.

After creating the magnificent universe, and its innumerable systems and the blue planet in them, Allah, in his mercy, created man upon the Earth… [But] mankind, by exploring the universe, lost his belief in the universe and the heavens! The human being feels he is alone. This is because people, by becoming too deeply involved with material things, have lost their connections with the spiritual and heavenly realms.  — Niyazov, Ruhnama

I won’t apologize for quoting Niyazov and you’ll see why in a little while.  Way back in the Nineties, Turkmenistan’s first and most notorious president declared his ambition of putting Turkmen into space.  What’s become of the dream?  Well, believe it or not, Turkmenistan has actually accomplished the goal — sort of.

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