Monday, March 29, 2004

Ever heard of Uzbekistan? 

They have become a close 'ally' of ours thanks to the war on terror. We used them as a staging area for Afghanistan and we have a base there. Now they appear to be a new target for Islamic extremists (not proven).

But they have a long history of human rights abuses and extreme intolerance by the government. A relative of mine was in the Peace Corps there. She asked many questions and made note of abuses. The list below is by no means comprehensive and is only reflective of people she met. According to her:

Incidences of domestic violence, according to her informal survey, is 100%.
Women do all the work and cater to/serve 'their' men; men do virtually nothing. Most do not work.
Infidelity is accepted and hovers around 100%. Among men.
The government run tv/radio depicts the president as being a world traveler, constantly meeting with the heads of various countries. He is shown with his face dubbed over someone else's. A very poor looking fake.
So little respect is shown to women, especially foreign women, that my relative (a woman) constantly dealt with rocks being thrown at her, insults being yelled at her, and men/boys laughing in derision at her as she walked past.
She is now lactose intolerant because she was given vaccines for some intestinal problems. The vaccines were given to her by the Peace Corps (run by the US govt). When she was in Africa with the PC, she told them about these vaccines. They were horrified because what she is given has been banned. But they had to get rid of them so the PC volunteers were the unfortunate recipients. Nice.

But I digress. If only they had oil there, I'll bet we might help them out. Or at least pay them some attention. Here is the CIA's report on Uzbekistan.

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Name: Corey
Location: Portland, Oregon, United States

I'm on a journey with no destination. The path is constantly changing direction but there are always adventures to be had. "Never" and "always" have left my lexicon.

WWW http:/www.jimspeak.blogspot.com