Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Turkmenbashi



Si yo fuera dictador, sería Turkmenbashi, no me cabe la menor duda.
Turkmenistan estuvo controlada por la URSS desde 1924 a 1991. Después de la caída el comunismo este país se vio libre por primera vez en muchos años. Saparmurat Niyazov se convirtió en el nuevo presidente y pensó que era más importante dar a su pueblo una identidad nacional que ayudar a más de 5 millones de personas que casi vivían en la edad de piedra.
En 1993 Niyazov decidió empezar con su política nacional.

First, he took the name Turkmenbashi (Leader of All Ethnic Turkmen) and declared himself President for Life. Since then, he’s undertaken scores of self-aggrandizing – and bizarre – measures to make Turkmenistan a very unique place:
› The airport in the capital city of Asgabat was renamed … Turkmenbashi.
› Dozens of streets and schools across the country are now called … Turkmenbashi.
› In 1998 a 670-pound meteorite landed in Turkmenistan. Scientist named it … Turkmenbashi.
› The name of the large port city Krasnovodsk was changed to … Turkmenbashi.
› The New president also renamed the months. January is now called … Turkmenbashi. April is called Gurbansoltan edzhe, after his mother. (Bread, once called chorek, is now also called gurbansoltan edzhe.)


Statue of Turkmenbashi on top of the Arch of Neutrality. The statue always rotate to face the sun

-In 2000 he ordered that a giant lake be created in the desert along with a huge forest of cedar trees, which, he said, would help to moderate Turkmenistan’s climate.› In 2004, he ordered that a giant ice palace be build in the middle of the same desert, the Karakum the hottest location in central Asia. It will include a zoo with penguins.



› The image of Turkmenbashi’s face is used as the logo of all three state-run TV stations, and is legally required to appear on every clock and watch face as well as on every bottle of Turkmenbashi brand vodka.



In 2001 Turkmenbashi wrote a book – a combination of poetry, revisionist history, and moral guidelines – called Ruhnama (Persian for “Book of the Soul”). It is now required to be prominently displayed in all bookstores and government offices, and next to the Koran in mosques. Memorization of the book is required to graduate from school and to get a state job or even a driver’s license. Schoolchildren spend one entire day every week reading it. Since all Soviet-era book have been banned, most Turkmen libraries have only the Ruhnama and other books written by Turkmenbashi. In 2006 Turkmenbashi made reading the Ruhnama a requirement for entry into heaven.
› Not surprisingly, Turkmenbashi recently “won” the Magtymguly International Prize, honoring the best pro-Turkmen poetry, which is awarded by … Turkmenbashi himself.

MORE STRANGE ACTS OF TURKMENBASHI

› In 2004 Turkmenbashi banned newscasters from wearing make-up. Why? He said he couldn’t tell the male and female news readers apart and that made him uncomfortable.
› After he quit smoking in 1997, he banned smoking for everybody else, too (but only in public places).
› In 2006, to mark Turkmenistan’s independence day, Turkmenbashi gave each female resident a gift of 200,000 manat (about $38).
He banned gold tooth caps and gold teeth, and suggested that tooth preservation could be more easily accomplished by chewing on bones.

Desde hoy mismo dejo de llamarme Manu, ahora soy Turkmenbashi

Fuentes:
New Yorker
y sobre todo Neatorama

por cierto el dictador murió el año pasado.
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