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>>money coming from gas export is totally under control of the government and it is being spent wisely, inside the country as much as possible. And there's no single person who can waste millions of gas money on personal entertainment.

That comment made me Google. Turkmenistan makes e.g. Iran and Egypt look democratic.

From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_in_Turkmenistan#Po...

>>Any opposition to the government is considered treason and punishable by life imprisonment.

From http://www.hrw.org/en/by-issue/essential-background/219

>>Turkmenistan remains one of the most repressive and authoritarian countries in the world

The "joke" here is: I wonder what would happen the poster if he wrote anything different?




Yep, that was among the first things that occurred to me when I read his reply; nobody in the former USSR, most certainly not Central Asia, let alone Turkmenistan, earnestly describes their government's spending as "wise."

But on the off-chance that the guy is an actual Turkmen in Turkmenistan, I figured it would be impolite to take up the issue here.

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Well, Turkmenistan is black box when looked from outside, I wouldn't jump to conclusions based on couple minutes of Google search :-)

Our government is paranoid about money leaving the country. And I think, rightly so.

We spend quite a lot inside on infrastructure, build some shiny new schools/hospitals/residence buildings, invest on some factories, etc. It may not be "wisest" way possible, but I wouldn't call that stupid either. At least, better than distributing the wealth among "family" like in Russia 90s.

My original point was "No, you can't make millions by getting on radar here in Turkmenistan. It is not as easy as you think."

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Understood. No disagreement there. :-) I actually assumed you were something of a "patriot"; people here expect me to avenge insults to Russia with blood all the time for some reason.

And certainly, a policy to contain the kind of international laundering^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^Hcapital flight that characterised Russia in the 90s is wiser than the absence of one.

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>>I wouldn't jump to conclusions based on couple minutes of Google search :-)

True, HRW and Wikipedia are just Western conspiracies -- just ask any dictator! :-)

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I think the parent's point was that blanket statements of this sort gloss over all sorts of significant nuances that render the issue in non-B&W terms, especially as it relates to his specific experience of that country's political environment.

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>> his specific experience of that country's political environment.

Totally irrelevant. I quoted:

>>Any opposition to the government is considered treason and punishable by life imprisonment.

My SPECIFIC point was:

The "joke" here is: I wonder what would happen the poster if he wrote anything different?

To be absolutely clear: The poster couldn't write anything else out of self preservation, according to HRW/Wikipedia.

If you can show HRW to be spinning that much, please give references.

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My SPECIFIC point was:

The "joke" here is: I wonder what would happen the poster if he wrote anything different?

Nothing! Seriously.. I keep a blog (in Turkmen) for more than 3 years and people actually living in the country write all kinds of criticism (in blog posts/comments), and guess what? We are all alive and well, have more than 1 million+ pageviews/year.

Oh wait, someone's knocking the door...

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Well, I hope HRW and Wikipedia [edit: and CIA World Factbook] are full of it, for your sake...

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