Editor’s note: neweurasia readers will already be well-acquainted with the ongoing Roghun project and the controversy surrounding it, as well as the news, announced first by our network, of a massive lawsuit by a trio of judges against a trio of independent newspapers. neweurasia’s Averroes sees a potentially serious ethical conflict between the government and press in Tajikistan and wants to know your opinion: whose side is right?
Imagine if you were the government of one of the world’s most economically vulnerable countries. Every winter millions of your citizens go cold as nearly limitless hydro-electrical potential goes untapped. Developing this potential would require an engineering feat.
Determined to rectify the problem once and for all but with little support internationally, you embark upon a radical course of action: compelling your citizens, 60% of whom live below the international poverty line, to hand over their personal savings for a massive fund dedicated to the construction of hydroelectric dam.
Now imagine if you were this country’s media. Everywhere you look corruption is to be found, especially in the judicial system, among those who are supposed to protect the nation from exploitation. You support the hydroelectric project but you can’t trust the government’s claim that the fund will only be used for the purposes of construction?
Welcome to Tajikistan in 2010. The country is in the grips of a drama with ethical significance for the larger journalistic world. We here in neweurasia have been very critical of the Roghun dam, but we want to hear your opinion.
Should the government of Tajikistan have a carte blanche to do what is necessary to save the physical lives of their people? Should the independent media of Tajikistan uproot every possible act of corruption to save the country’s moral integrity? What is the most ethical thing to be done here? Leave a comment below!
[Correction 16.03.2010: This post was incorrectly filed under “Schwartz” due to a technical error. We apologize to our blogger for the problem. ]