The Guardian 9 February, 2005

Soros falls from grace in Central Asia

After Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan has also voiced concerns about the activities of the Soros Foundation. This completes the quorum.

In rapid sequence, Uzbekistan kicked out Soros, Kazakhstan issued a back-taxes notice that is likely to lead to closure of Soros offices, President Askar Akayev of Kyrgyzstan whipped Soros for interfering in the society and President Imomali Rakhmanov of Tajikistan told his cabinet of ministers that he considered Soros a destructive presence for the society.

Why has the entire Central Asian region united against Soros, a supposedly philanthropic organisation engaged in grand and noble projects of absolutely the greatest possible value to the primitive and barbarian societies of Central Asia?

Here are, very briefly, some of the reasons:

One of the declared aims of Soros Foundation and its downstream organisations is to create "Civil Society" in Central Asian nations. This noble intention is quite possibly based on the assumption that Central Asia is inhabited by barbarians and uncivilised creatures "natives" in short.

While treating the Central Asian people as "uncivilised" creatures and their societies as "uncivilised" societies, it would be useful to remember that Central Asians have no genocide on their hands. Neither Jews nor Native Americans of not long ago came to the verge of extinction at the hands of Central Asian people.

One must also not forget that while calling African Americans "nigger" is too embarrassing now and that they had to struggle for their basic rights, guests of any colour and religion were welcome in any Central Asian yurt. Then, as now, black, white, brown and yellow people broke bread in the same bowl in this uncivilised part of the world. The Silk Road never had a colour-coded social order.

None of the Central Asian countries are civilised enough to subject their visitors to cavity searches. People coming from different parts of the world are not photographed and fingerprinted on arrival. How uncivilised!

They have still not asked a visiting defence minister of a friendly country or a serving general of a "coalition partner" to take off their shoes at the airport, an uncivilised inhibition that needs to be discarded.

Apart from these obviously uncivil traits, there are many other drawbacks in the Central Asian societies.

The cradle to grave social network that is not dependent on the state is something that needs Soros treatment. There is virtually no need for old people's homes because, by default, the youngest child looks after the parents until their death. It is not a burden to them; it is honour and pleasure the ability to return something of the love and care they got in their infancy and childhood. It is a clear violation of civil rights. A civilised society must send its young to the boarding school and the old to the old people's home. Very young and very old are a hindrance to the process of civilisation.

Central Asian women, especially from rural areas, have the nasty habit of covering their bodies. This practice encroaches on the civil liberties of men. It is irritating to see that only hands and face are naked to the visible eye, I mean, visible to the naked eye. People cannot develop their full potentials in societies where acres and acres of female flesh are not exposed to the environment and to the lusting eye.

Unmatched hospitality of the Central Asian people is another source of concern. A civilised society is where Sikhs can be mobbed and killed because they resemble Muslims in appearance, where mosques can be desecrated and burned, where people can be knifed if they are coming out of a prayer house of that "other religion", where it is not safe to travel in the subway, where jail wardens look the other way when inmates beat and asphyxiate someone for being "weird", where hardly anyone knows who is living next door and where skinheads can proudly practice racial discrimination.

The trouble is that like most things American, Soros's approach is based on a monochrome template: Black and white, American society and uncivilised society, democracy or dictatorship, with us or against us.

The real world, the world where Central Asians live along with most other nations, is not a cheap joke of a bored God. It is not black and white. It is fully alive in all the colours that anyone can perceive or imagine.

Asserting that there is only one acceptable model of democracy and that is the American model and you'd better take it or we'll shove it down your throats; saying that only a certain way of dressing and eating is acceptable in the civilised world and you must do it our way or we would force you to do it; propagating that regime change is the only medicine for all the ailments of a society; teaching that everything that exists must be demolished to build something else; and chiding that nothing is right and everything is wrong is not really the most imaginative way of serving any people, least of all the Central Asian people who have a collective heritage of thousands of years of civilisation.

Central Asia News (Turkmenistan)

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