Kyrgyzstan Unrest Bears Putin's Fingerprints

How about a stop to the meddling, pleads Simon Tisdall
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 9, 2010 1:22 PM CDT
Kyrgyzstan Unrest Bears Putin's Fingerprints
President Barack Obama.   (AP Photo)

Vladimir Putin’s “sardonic” acknowledgment of the interim regime in Kyrgyzstan yesterday is just another clue that the Russian government was involved in ousting president Kurmanbek Bakiyev, Simon Tisdall writes. It’s obvious: Putin essentially paid off Bakiyev to boot the US from a Kyrgyz air base, which ended up not happening. Then, voila! Russian TV stations “not usually noted for their concern for human rights have freely criticized Bakiyev.”

But it’s the US that dealt with Bakiyev despite legitimate concerns over abuse, showing “President Obama’s at home in the compromised world of realpolitik,” Tisdall writes in the Guardian. Russia “insists on regarding this vast region as falling within its sphere of influence,” and the US exhibits a “self-interestedly insouciant disregard for the regime's egregious human rights abuses.” A more productive approach would see the established powers “not try to exploit the power vacuum, confine themselves to constructive advice and assistance, and stop using the country as a playboard.” (More Vladimir Putin stories.)

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