Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Brief update...

The May 1st, 2008 blog entry 'January is back' noted that "at the end of April 2008 the current President of Turkmenistan, Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov, announced that his country would return to using the Gregorian calendar. He abolished the bizarre calendar introduced by the previous leader, Saparmurat Niyazov, (a.k.a Turkmenbashi, or the Head of All Turkmen), Turkmenbashi had renamed January after himself on the official Turkmen calendar, and had named other months after his parents, etc" and reprinted the September 2002 OPED27 on Turkmenbashi...

It looked like perhaps Berdymukhammedov might be about to undo the extreme cult of personality that had been built up by Niyazov. However, all indications are that this is not the case. Turkmenistan: Stranger in a very strange land reports on a recent trip to the Turkmen capital, Ashgabat, and that all the trappings of Saparmurat Turkmenbashi's wonder still remain, with monuments now being added for the quasi-unpronounceable Berdymukhammedov! Same story in this article: Turkmenbashi II? Asian country's slide from one personality cult to another.

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