Geopolitics at Heart of Kyrgyzstan Unrest: interview with Igor Ryabov
By Anna Arutunyan MosNews.com
>US influence is very strong in Kyrgyzstan - a number of
non-governmental organizations are active on its territory, and they
they are financed by US organizations. They are the Soros
Foundation, and Freedom House. The printing press that prints
opposition newspapers is actually owned by Freedom House. The head
of this organization is James Woolsey, the former CIA director. And
congressmen who have criticized the Kyrgyz government are in fact
quite close to these power structures.
The anarchy that is happening there is first of all convenient for
the narcotics trade. And it's the narcotics party that has really
won from all this. The road from Afghanistan to Russia goes through
the Ferghana Valley...
The Americans really invested a lot in building a civil society
there. This network of NGO's was being used by the US as its
political base. But the thing is - this whole approach towards a
civil society is really an American model that is more natural in
European countries. But to dig deeper - into the clan relations, for
example - and you realize that the Americans just don't understand
how their society is built. That is why all these NGO's are there to
eat up money, hold seminars and don't have anything to do with real
life in the country.
For example, a "human rights activist" was recently arrested there -
he was called a human rights activist because he headed one of the
NGO's. And he was arrested for provoking the violent unrest. Also,
he had close ties with the US ambassador Stephen Young.
[and the following: what a load of BS whitewash - NED etal directed
this rev. I LOVE Condie 'denouncing violence'.]
Labor Solidarity Makes the Call By Eli Lake
The New York Sun Friday 25 March 2005
Washington - The workday ended uncharacteristically early for
the head of the American Center for International Labor Solidarity
in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, yesterday.
At 2 p.m., in the middle of a seminar she was conducting for the
heads of Kyrgyz trade unions, she was interrupted. The trade unions
chiefs were summoned away for a crucial meeting during which they
had to decide on the spot whether they would support the government
that would replace the one that had just fallen.
The union leaders decided they would. And in a note sent to its
Washington headquarters, the head of the American Center for
International Labor Solidarity, who asked that her name not be
published, concluded, "The revolution seems to be over, the
opposition has taken control."
That was a far more accurate assessment of the events on the
ground than the State Department guidance, which assured reporters
here that Foggy Bottom was "monitoring the situation" and "working
closely" with Russia and the Kyrgyz Republic's authoritarian
neighbors. Secretary of State Rice denounced reports of violence in
the south and the capital, Bishkek, and called for political
While the message from Washington yesterday may have been one of
caution with an emphasis on keeping order, behind the scenes,
successive Democratic and Republican administrations have been
making an investment in democracy throughout Central Asia since the
collapse of the Soviet Union.
"When a society is moving towards a point of protest, it takes
years of preparation to acquire the information, to develop networks
of informal associations and civil society organizations. It is not
just the result of one group to bring the people to the streets,"
the director for Europe and Eurasia programs at the National
Endowment for Democracy, Nadia Diuk, said yesterday in an interview.
Ms. Diuk oversaw slightly more than $600,000 of grants to
projects in the Kyrgyz Republic for 2004, including the
establishment of the American Center for International Labor
Solidarity. Other projects include training for human rights
programs, legal aid, and a project to publish a Kyrgyz guide to
The endowment's sister organization, the International Republican
Institute, spent another $400,000 in the last year and a half
specifically for training political parties there. Newspapers and
Web sites funded by the billionaire George Soros ran stories on the
corruption of President Akayev that sparked much of the popular
resentment against him. All told, the State Department spent $12.2
million for democracy-promotion projects in the country, $600,000
more than it did on security aid. Compared to the annual foreign aid
America gives Israel or Egypt, for example, or that which the CIA
provides to friendly countries for counterterrorism assistance,
these projects hardly constitute a serious investment. But many
watchers of Central Asia say the fact that America is funding these
kinds of projects instills hope in the democratic opposition.
"The United States has consistently invested in democratization
and human rights in Central Asia," a Central Asia expert at the
Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, Andrew Apostolou, said in
an interview. "These relatively small amounts of money have had a
large effect because they are coming from the superpower, and
because frankly, few other governments have pushed these issues."
While similar projects have been pushed by the NED and State
Department in Ukraine and Georgia, two other former Soviet Republics
whose governments fell to people-power movements, the International
Republican Institute's Stephen Nix warns against drawing too close a
"This is different than what we have seen in other countries,"
Mr. Nix, who oversees Eurasia programs for the institute,
said. "Unlike Ukraine, where you had a huge coalition led by an
individual, in Bishkek, you have a number of different political
forces at work."
Another difference between the Kyrgyz Republic and its neighbors
is that civil society was allowed to flourish. "Akayev is probably
one of the better dictators in the region," Ms. Diuk said. "In the
early 1990s, he was welcomed in Washington as the great hope of
central Asia." By way of comparison, she said Mr. Akayev only
arrests political opponents, whereas credible reports exist in
Uzbekistan of the opposition being boiled alive. Mr. Akayev, Ms.
Diuk added, only tried to steal an election. The leader of
Turkmenistan, Saparmurat Niyazov, recently declared himself
president for life.
Deposed Kyrgyz Leader Blamed American 'Freedom House' for Aiding
Opponents Speaking to Russian News Editors in January, the former
president said he knew of the coming 'Tulip Revolution' and who was
behind it, but he felt sure it wouldn't succeed.
By Irina Demchenko
March 25, 2005
According to Akayev, the money to fund the 'Tulip Revolution' came
from outside the country. He even named the source of most of the
funding, - an organization called Freedom House. He also pointed to
other international groups that support democracy in developing
countries. Akayev also made of point of saying that the Soros Fund
was not such a channel.
About the financial costs of Tulip revolution
There is an interesting translation from the report by Stephen M.
Young, US Ambassador in Kyrgyzstan, on 30.12.2004, about the coming
parliamentary elections in this country. The report allegedly was
intercepted in Pakistan. The Russian translation is originally
published in Kyrgyz National Information Agency.
It shows the US plotting to use Kyrgyz elections to destabilize the
govt and initiate a string of 'daffodil/ tulip' revolutions through
Central Asia. It follows on Kyrgyz refusal to allow AWACs to be
stationed at the US base.
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