In Tajikistan, in the opinion of the authoritative Russian newspaper Kommersant, there are not and there were no prerequisites for a velvet revolution. Because, according to the publication, local authorities took timely measures to curb the vigorous activity of opponents, literally disarming them in a figurative and direct sense of the word. The imperious post-Soviet elite, who came to hegemony in the country in 1992, again defeated the “yellow-headed” opposition. Is there anyway in this alpine country?
In Tajikistan and abroad, many want to find an answer to this question, but they cannot.
A bit of history. On September 9, 1991, the Chairman of the Supreme Soviet of the Tajik SSR, Kadriddin Aslonov, who was executed during the civil confrontation in 1992, proclaimed the independence and sovereignty of the Republic of Tajikistan, which is annually celebrated by the people and the current government. In November 1992, after the victory of the Islamists of the Popular Front movement, at the historic 16th session a new head of the Tajik state was elected - Emomali Rakhmon (then Rakhmonov). The opposition left for Afghanistan and from there it continued the struggle. 5-year fratricidal war brought not only thousands of human victims, but also hunger and destruction. In 1997, an agreement on reconciliation was concluded between President of Tajikistan Rakhmonov (1994) and the leader of the Tajik opposition Said Abdullo Nuri in Moscow. Representatives of the opposition and fighters of the movement "People's Front" were amnestied.
The influential field commanders Sangak Safarov and Faizali Khasanov died under unexplained circumstances, the leader of the Islamist movement Said Abdullo Nuri died, the former Interior Minister General Yokub Salimov and the head of the Drug Control Agency General Gaffor Mirzoyev were sent to prison. The former chairman of the Democratic Party, Mahmadruzi Iskandarov, who was considered by experts as a real alternative to Rakhmonov for the presidency in 2006, has been detained for many years. Then the current president won, having received the majority of votes - more than 80% of voters. Of the eight political parties, three boycotted the presidential election. The other four candidates from the other four parties are far behind the favorite in the presidential race. They received from 2 to 6% of the vote during the elections.
In the camp of the Communists, the oldest and most experienced party in the country, now there is “peace and loyalty.” The Communist Party of Tajikistan (CPT), which Shadi Shabdolov has headed for about 20 years, has been cautious. This causes discontent not only in the ranks of the most left-wing, but also of the population. The communists did not nominate candidates for the presidential elections of 1994 and 2000, which caused reproaches of ordinary citizens, not to mention the press and intellectuals. In the summer of 2006, before the upcoming presidential elections, the former deputy chairman, member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Tajikistan, Tuigun Karimov, accused his party boss and his fellow Communist deputies in complicity with the party in power, in favor of personal interests. The leader of the left not only retained his post, but also retained “a place in the sun” - he is a member of the lower house of parliament, the legislative body of the republic.
Similar political metamorphosis occurred before the parliamentary and presidential elections in the Socialist (SPT) and Democratic (DPT) parties. “I think they did not occur without the intervention of political strategists from the People’s Democratic Party of Tajikistan - the ruling party who are adept in preparing and conducting dirty political technology operations,” said well-known socialist Mirhuseyn Narziev.
He only wonders how the SPT was split into two wings. M. Narziev, who still considers himself the chairman of the party, is perplexed how the authorities registered another similar party under the leadership of Abduhalim Gafforov, who had already managed to run for the presidency, although he received the least number of votes. And Narziev still walks through the courts, proving his case.
The performance in the democratic camp deserves true theatrical praise. The authorities imprisoned for many years the chairman of the Democratic Party of Tajikistan, Mahmadruzi Iskanadarov, who led the democratic movement from behind the bars. Domestic and international experts spoke of him as the most likely alternative to the presidency. Before the elections, another ambitious political figure appeared, claiming to be the leader of the Democrats, which was not even heard of in the democratic camp. Two days before the presidential election - November 4, 2006, representatives of the Democratic, Social-Democratic and “Narziyevsky Wing” of the Socialist Parties of Tajikistan participated in an unauthorized picket in front of the Ministry of Justice demanding to cancel the decision of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic to register DPT under Masud Sobirov’s recognition and recognition of the Democratic Party Tajikistan, headed by Mahmadruzi Iskandarov.
The head of the capital cell of the DPT, Rajabi Mirzo, was subjected to administrative punishment for 15 days. The "convicted" democrat now believes that "these events were a well-staged performance."
“The task of the government is to understand every problem. And it does not matter from whom it will hear - from a simple dekhkanin or from the mouth of a state official, ”said the chairman of the Islamic Renaissance Party (IRPT), a member of the republic’s parliament, Muhiddin Kabiri. “But, unfortunately, the authorities often pretend that they do not understand the existing difficulties in society, which are spoken by representatives of opposition parties,” the leader of the only Islamic party legalized in Central Asian states continued. According to the country's political scientists, the words of Kabiri are worth listening to. Young, competent, expert in several languages, moderate and cautious in his statements. When the spiritual leader of the IRP, Said Abdullo Nuri, died, his candidacy for the chairmanship was perceived ambiguously in the ranks of the IRP. Some were afraid that the charter of the Islamic movement would be amended. But having become the leader of the party, he assured his comrades-in-arms that the party would follow the intended path of the late spiritual leader. His authority grew not only among believers, but also among the population of the republic, when they learned that he had refused the offer to occupy a high post in the government. The IRPT is one of the most influential parties in the republic, with which official power must reckon, and its young leader has good chances to try to compete in the next presidential election.
Speaking about the external opposition, we have to admit that it generally prefers not to remind of itself, except for the disgraced editor of the newspaper “Charogi Ruz” Doodozhon Atovulloev, who sometimes excites both the society and the government of his publications.
According to Hojimahmad Umarov, a well-known economist, there is no strong opposition in the political arena because all Tajik business, the entire economy of the country is under the control of the current government. In the normal and not in the criminal sense of the word. In a survey conducted by the popular newspaper AsiaPlus, when asked what is preventing the opposition from activating? Almost 50% of respondents noted a shortage of money. This fact indicates that seven political parties do not have financial support and economic structures. And the ruling party in the legislative framework uses economic levers and personnel incentives. One of my informed interlocutors noted that “our legislation does not allow state officials to have their own business. Corrupt buy real estate - restaurants, car parks, shops, retail outlets and household services and draw it on their relatives, friends, neighbors. It is easier to get into the public service than to raise any production. Young citizens living according to the current rules know that without obvious large investments you cannot get into the political circle, and even more so in big politics. ” According to unverified data, more than 80% of the leading cadres in the republic are members of the ruling party. Young, promising, ambitious graduates of prestigious foreign universities are eager for power. According to observers, it is the young members of the PDPT who in the future will ruthlessly fight for high posts in the government and parliament (this is now happening in Kazakhstan). But, while they are constrained by the personnel policy of the head of state, who needs a reliable team.
The famous publicist Khulkar Yusupov believes that "in our country, social explosions are not expected." Because, firstly, in the memory of the people, including representatives of the opposition, there is a deep fear of the tragic upheavals of the civil war that have befallen the Tajik people. Secondly, the chosen path of capitalization in the country led a handful of people to acquire major material benefits, some people gained the freedom to take the initiative to choose their place of residence. Businessmen who have achieved success over the years of independence are unlikely to join the ranks of the opposition. Third, the country's government and local authorities in the regions have learned to maneuver with opponents. Invitations to celebrations, promises to give a post, conversations in a friendly atmosphere - an incomplete list of the methods of work of the government with representatives of opposition parties. And the current economic and socio-political situation in the country requires a new form of relations with the official authorities, a revision of the strategy and tactics of activity in the new conditions. The current “degree” of parties, their “constructive opposition” is a clear rejection of political struggle within the law, which gives scope to the vigorous activity of the ruling party. One thing is clear - the current government, as they say, using the method “any methods are good”, beats up its yellow-headed, inept and weak opposition, but this does not change anything.