Kazakhstan: Reaching for the Future

by Nathan Hamm on 1/19/2007 · 4 comments

I was unfortunately busy all day deep in thought and writing about the structure of domestic political competition in Central Asian states, so there was no time to do any substantive posts on the news of the day. (There was actually quite a bit…) So instead, here’s the latest video from Kazakhstan’s Embassy in DC.

I applaud it if for no other reason, the narrator sounds happy whenever he mentions the US, not so happy when he talks about “threats from the Kremlin,” and sarcastic about “well-wishers” who encouraged Kazakhstan to keep nuclear weapons left behind by the Soviets. And 41 makes an appearance. Enjoy!

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– author of 2991 posts on 17_PersonNotFound.

Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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Joshua Foust January 19, 2007 at 8:59 pm

“The first ever visit by a head of state of an independent Kazakhstan.” Major lulz!

Seriously, 41 sounded like a prop in a juche patriotic film. And I like the guy.

Also, the overlay of Dick Cheney and the narrator’s insistence on calling Kazakhstan a democracy was just perfect. Good call Nathan.

Laurence January 20, 2007 at 5:37 am

Nathan, Thanks for posting this. The Bill Clinton speech was very interesting. Who was offering money for Kazakhstan to keep its nuclear weapons? They don’t say, but from Clinton’s expression, it looked serious…

Boratino January 21, 2007 at 9:51 pm

There hearsays that some Kazakh nukes went then to troubled Middle East. It should’ve better stayed in stable Kazakstan.

Kremlin is worried that Kazakhstan is shifting towards China. And it is time to learn Chinese for all Central Asians. Hmm, tough times ahead. That’s not an easy language to learn.

Anna January 23, 2007 at 8:06 am

Roman Vassilenko is definitely in touch with web 2.0 possibilities. I wonder if it has to do with his comparative youth (the guy can’t be over 35) in relation to the usual age of diplomatic personnel who get the prestigious/important postings?

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