Tag: Kyrgyzstan

Update: Kyrgyzstan Government Overthrown !

* The NYT is now reporting that the president has fled *

And this:

Opposition leaders said the toll was as high as 100 people, but that figure could not be confirmed.


Kyrgyzstan is in outright revolt, after years of fake elections, and the removal of any semblance of a free media.

They’re between a rock and a hard place since both Russia and the US supports the current regime. The US because it needs the airbase for the Afghan war, and Russia for the same reasons–they also have bases there.

With the unrest deepening, several opposition leaders were arrested, including a former prime minister and presidential candidate, Almazbek Atambaev, and a former speaker of Parliament, Omurbek Tekebaev.

Is the US concerned about arrests, at least 12 protester deaths, the fake elections, the closing of the media?

Uh, no.

The US response?

The United States Embassy in Bishkek issued a statement saying that it was “deeply concerned about reports of civil disturbances.”

There’s some horrifying images on the NYT site, I’ll post only this one:

The Friends We Keep Tell Much About Us

The New Your Times reports:

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan – “You know what this is for,” Emilbek Kaptagaev recalled being told by the police officers who snatched him off the street. No other words, just blows to the head, then all went black. Mr. Kaptagaev, an opponent of Kyrgyzstan’s president, who is a vital American ally in the war in nearby Afghanistan, was found later in a field with a concussion, broken ribs and a face swollen into a mosaic of bruises.

The United States has remained largely silent in response to this wave of violence, apparently wary of jeopardizing the status of its sprawling air base, on the outskirts of this capital, which supports the mission in Afghanistan. Indeed, the Obama administration has sought to woo the Kyrgyz president since he said in February that he would close the Manas base.

In June, President Obama sent a letter to Mr. Bakiyev praising his role in Afghanistan and the campaign against terrorism. Mr. Bakiyev allowed the base to stay, after the United States agreed to pay higher rent and other minor changes.


Syrgak Abdyldaev says he barely escaped that fate. In March, Mr. Abdyldaev, 47, a well-known journalist who has scrutinized the president’s political activities, was lured to a meeting by an anonymous caller who promised confidential information, and was attacked.


Okay, Okay, you say.

But it’s worth being nice to despotic regimes such as Kyrgyzstan, because we can save the women of Afghanistan from the Taliban, right?

Lesbian and bisexual women and transgender men face violent abuse, including rape, in Kyrgyzstan, both in family settings and from strangers on the street, Human Rights Watch said in a report issued today. The report calls on the Kyrgyz government to acknowledge the problem and protect the victims, and on the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and other European institutions to step up their response to violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity.


That’s OK, right? Obama sure has this one covered:

So why is Afghanistan worth fighting over when Kyrgyzstanis are being tossed away like last months milk ?

Um, well…

Here’s a picture from the north of Afghanistan:

Yea, that’s change alright.

Deja Vue, All Over Again

America’s apple pie threatened by loss of Central Asia’s forests


During last year’s U.S. presidential campaign, Barack Obama campaigned on a pro-pie platform. But apple pie, an epitome of Americanness, is threatened by the apple’s stagnant gene pool.

Like many Americans, the apple is an immigrant to the United States. The apple’s ancestors came from Central Asia. Today, wild apple trees grow in the Tien Shan Mountains in Western China and in neighboring Kazakhstan. Almaty, the former capital, of Kazakhstan literally means ‘the Father of Apples’.

In addition to wild apple, Central Asia is home to more than 300 wild fruit and nut species, including plum, cherry, apricot, pistachio, walnut and many other important food trees from which domesticated varieties are thought to originate.

A team of international scientists have completed an inventory of Central Asia’s trees and identified 44 species in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan as globally threatened with extinction.