Posted by: Christian | April 7, 2009

Central Asia, Afghanistan and Russian Paranoia

My office mate and fellow PhD student, whose Russian language skills are far better than my meager reading skills, has reviewed a report on official Russian television and found some interesting claims about the American activities in Kyrgyzstan:

The film starts by exposing the primary aim of American “colonizers” in Kyrgyzstan that is to occupy Kyrgyz land and to implement the very same policies toward the local population which were used against Native Americans in 18th and 19th centuries.

[…] The documentary claims that hundreds of American spies are deployed all over Kyrgyzstan; some of them even working as sunflower seed sellers in local bazaars. An extreme claim made was that many American spies received their ideological inspiration from reading Hitler’s Mein Kampf, copies of which were allegedly found at one of the “American spy safehouses”….

[…] One of the more interesting parts of the film is the accusation that US air force is the biggest narcotics trafficker from Afghanistan to the world drug market.

This is officially approved Russian news. I highly doubt the Russian leadership believes that opium-smuggling neo-Nazi American spies are infiltrating Central Asian bazaars as undercover sunflower seed sellers. But this is the crap they feed their people.

Read the whole review and watch the videos here.

And yes, I do note the disconnect between this report and actual Russian policy towards US/NATO supply transit through Central Asia.


  1. The problem with the presentation of this film – is that instead of accusing the Russian’s of making false parallels between Kyrgyz and Native American’s, it’s the American’s with their stupid calendars, that make this parallel! You should be able to pick this up without any knowledge of Russian.

    Second, Nazis. As any Russia expert knows, Russian’s routinely refer to Western collaboration and affinity for Nazi’s, when speaking of colonialism. It’s the same as when AIPAC throws the term around,or the Wiesenthal center compares Khomeini to Nazis…or Bush compared Hussein to Nazis (no, not Hussein Obama).

    So you shouldn’t get sidetracked with too much of your own “paranoia”.

    As for the message, that Manas is part of a US expansion – that’s a no brainer. Read Bush’s 2003 US National Strategy.

    And yes, the Kyrgyz genuinely feel a far closer bond with their coterminous neighbors, than Uncle Sam two oceans and land-masses away.

    Go figure :)

  2. Mr. Aliev, feel free to leave your comments in Uzbek, Kazakh, Tajik or Kyrgyz (even though I’m not too good with Kyrgyz, more extrapolation than anything else). Unless, of course, you can’t speak any of those languages.


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