/ unrevolutions /
Ukraine, Georgia... Azerbaijan? No, I'm afraid not, as yesterday's "revolutionaries" of colour support the Aliyev regime:
the protagonists of the Rose and Orange Revolutions in Georgia and Ukraine -- and the American and European supporters of those color revolutions -- are clearly signaling that they support President Ilham Aliyev's policies, which guarantee Azerbaijan's stability and Western orientation.
Thus, Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili has declared: "We are pleased to see that things are going well in Azerbaijan, that the country is developing as Georgia would wish it to, that it is becoming prosperous. I am glad that Azerbaijan has a leader who is a great hope for his people -- the results of his modernization efforts are obvious -- and who is very close to us, my personal friend, President Ilham Aliev. I refer to the policies he is carrying out to make Azerbaijan a truly successful country. This is absolutely crucial for us Georgians, because we will have an economically successful and strong neighbor, a strategic ally for dealing with all political and economic issues" (Imedi Television, October 12)...
With the results in, the OSCE which went out of its way to find nice things to say about the election process, came out and condemned the election process - something that Aliyev possibly didn't comprehend, as his spokesperson commented that "All the international reports of the international monitoring missions were fine... It doesn't say in them that the elections did not meet international standards," despite, you know, saying exactly that. The Azeri regime might have in mind Russian and Turkish observers who were quite cool with the legality of the process, while the US, while more critical, used the sort of language, noting "some improvements", that most obviously it did not during possibly less egregious election fraud in Ukraine. Anyway the World Bank is OK with all of this as it immediately offered Aliyev a loan.
Aliyev is not only comparable (including a shared inclination to murder opposing journalists) but worse than Kuchma in many ways (such as depending on his daddy's Stalinesque cult of personality). What seems to be happenning is that both the US and Russia are quite happy with the deals they made with Aliyev Jr and thus there's little concern over the not really exemplary human rights conditions in Azerbaijan, from any side. As some in the Russian Press point out:
The Azerbaijani government is receiving the support of Moscow and the West in return for its partial fulfillment of various demands, and Azeri President Ilham Aliev has obvious defeated the opposition for now in this oil-rich country.
Note some well crafted Azeri government apologetics, prior to the elections themselves.
The whole area is an arena of Great Game geopolitics, and this article might provide some background for the byzantine twists and turns of Azeri politics.