Kyrgyzstan is developing an immunity to authoritarianism.
“The third revolution in fifteen years is an indication that Kyrgyz society is developing immunity against corrupt and authoritarian rulers. In an surprisingly fast development, the people swept aside the president, annulled the election, which were broadly viewed as falsified, released a former president from jail, and appointed an acting prime minister, a mayor of the capital Bishkek, and a militia (police) chief. The new elections may take place soon.
“This is not the first time the Kyrgyz have kicked out leaders they perceive as corrupt and abusive. Two of the former presidents reside in Russia and Belarus respectively. So far, Kyrgyzstan beat Ukraine with its two Maidans, yet that did not improve the economy or attract foreign investment. The real challenge for the Kyrgyz people is to address the conflicts between clans and between the north and the south, and to ensure that the new leaders and the government will get corruption under control. Whether they need to change the Constitution to achieve that remains to be seen.
“Finally, it is important to understand that Kyrgyzstan may be a model for other countries in Central Asia and in the former Soviet Union where people may think that they exhausted all other available and peaceful means of protest and appeal. I am not a supporter of violence or extra-constitutional means of political struggle, but in the stolen Belarus presidential elections, in the Russian “annulled” constitutional process, or in the forthcoming elections elsewhere—if the powers that be trample on their own laws and brutally abuse police authority and resort to violence, otherwise peaceful citizens may resort to the Kyrgyz recipes to assert their rights.”