The Interpreter

A special project of Institute of Modern Russia
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Kyrgyz Nation Not ‘Tired’ of Independence Despite What Moscow Propagandists Claim, Baysalov Says

Staunton, April 9 – Pro-Moscow groups in Bishkek are actively promoting the idea that “Kyrgyzstan is tired of being independent,” that the West is the source of all its problems, and that it is time “to sign everything that is required” in order to have once again a comfortable life, according to Edil Baysalov, an advisor to that Central Asian country’s president.

Such messages have become so frequent and widespread that they now “form the main information background” for everything else, he continues, and as a result, an increasing number of people assume that “normal people and healthy patriots are in a terribly small minority” and are asking themselves what can be done.

And on the basis of these suggestions and apparently with an eye on joining Kyrgyzstan to Russia, Baysalov says, some deputies in the Kyrgyzstan parliament are pushing initiatives which “word for word repeat the xenophobic practices introduced in recent months by the State Duma of the Russian Federation.”

Kyrgyzstan is not Russia and does not need to behave the way Russia does, he continues. It doesn’t need to crush anyone who speaks out against the government, and it doesn’t need to proclaim that it is pursuing “a special path” that means international rules don’t apply to it. And it doesn’t need to promote xenophobia and hatred to foreigners.

What Moscow is doing is nothing new, Baysalov says. It has done it again and again and again, and the Kyrgyz alone with the rest of the world have become “witnesses of the unset of a dark era in the history of this state.” But Kyrgyzstan has no reason to follow that path, to make enemies of others, or to cut itself off from the world.

At the same time and as a first order of business, the presidential advisor argues, Bishkek “must oppose the unceasing attempts to project on our state the alien phantom fears and imperial habits” of Russia.

“Kyrgyzstan is an independent and sovereign state! Our country conducts an independent foreign and domestic policy in the national interests of the people of Kyrgystan!” In so doing, we honor our ancestors who did not spare their own blood or that of their enemies in its defense. “We will sit naked and cold, ready for any deprivation, but we will defend the Independence of our state and the Freedom of the Kyrgyz people.”

But “unfortunately,” Baysalov says, instead of learning these truths, “our young people day in and day out are being subjected to the mass propaganda of an alien state” which is promoting its imperial agenda. Indeed, it is now the case that “the average Kyrgyzstan resident consumes more Russian propaganda than does the average Tatar, Chechen, or Yakut.”

The intelligentsia of Kygyzstan stands silent in the face of this challenge, having been intimidated by the propaganda and having forgotten what 70 years of Moscow’s rule inflicted on the Kyrgyz, he continues. But the time has come to come to our senses and “awaken the people” to the new threat.

“It is time to say once and to repeat as often as necessary,” Baysalov concludes, “We are not tired of Independence! We are our own masters in the country. Our people never for any reason will stop being Free!”