Democracy Rising

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable" ~ President John F. Kennedy

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Kyrgyzstan: One Year On

It's been a year since the Kyrgyz uprising - possibly the most dramatic of all the colour revolutions - and probably an appropriate time to reflect.

In January of last year, many commentators remarked that a revolution was impossible in Kyrgyzstan - the opposition too disorganised to apparently make such a push. President Akayev even claimed, a few days before the 'coup' took hold, that he had found a 'vaccine' to Revolution. Quite what that was we shall never know. It certainly was ineffective. I do remember reading Misir Ashyrkulov, a former Presidential ally, had been placed in the opposition in an elaborate attempt for Akayev to handover power to a so-called opponent without actually losing power. Whether this would have occured in the scheduled October vote, we shall never know.

Achievements of the revolution are few and far between. Corruption has increased, constitutional reform has been delayed, and Bakiyev seems to think the economy can be kept afloat with extortionate rates for U.S airbases.

As I have remarked in the past Bakiyev seems to be intent on ruling in a similar manner to Akayev. Sadly, he doesn't even seem to pay lip-service to Democracy, rarely mentioning it at a time when most Kyrgyz hoped for a Yushchenko-esque figure.

What is most worrying is that protests have continued across the country - people clearly frustrated and agitated by the ineffective government. Bakiyev needs to reform - failure to learn the lessons of history (The Russian Provisional Government, Liberal Italy) show that ignoring the desires of people participating in a revolution only tends to push them towards more radical groups. The government has much to do in its second year. It may prove crucial. Let there be no doubt - Kyrgyzstan is still a flashpoint for violence and upheaval in 2006.


IWPR has a review as Kyrgyzstan Recalls the Day “Justice Triumphed”


Post a Comment

<< Home