Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Pacific News Service > News > Violence in Uzbekistan Not the Mark of Al Qaeda

Pacific News Service > News > Violence in Uzbekistan Not the Mark of Al Qaeda: "Violence in Uzbekistan Not the Mark of Al Qaeda
Commentary, William O. Beeman,
Pacific News Service, Mar 30, 2004
Editor's Note: Recent violence in Uzbekistan is likely the result of home-grown frustration with one of the world's most oppressive regimes, the writer says. But by pointing the finger at Al Qaeda, President Islam Karimov, who let U.S. forces use an Uzbek air base during the war in Afghanistan, gets a free pass from the Bush administration on human rights abuses.

Uzbekistan President Islam Karimov has blamed recent violence in his country on 'foreigners,' suggesting possible Al Qaeda connections. Al Qaeda is almost certainly not directly involved. The current suicide bombings and earlier insurrections in 1999 in Uzbekistan's Ferghana valley are the likely result of home-grown, explosive frustration with Karimov's heavy-handed regime.

Why does the mythology of Al Qaeda's connection to these events persist?

The short answer is that the governments of both Uzbekistan and the United States find it politically expedient to promote a false view of this ongoing confrontation. Karimov's government does so to avoid criticism for its own repression of its citizenry; the United States, to continue the image of the 'United States at War,' upon which President Bush is hanging his re-election hopes. "

No comments: