There were two television spots that ran in the U.S. during President Nazarbayev’s visit. The first, which I still have not located on the internet, was a rather poorly produced piece on the democratic and economic achievements of Kazakhstan. Unfortunately, that advertisement did not play well in the U.S., and one person in DC told me it reminded him of a cable access spot. He said that he felt sorry for Kazakhstan if they had paid good money for it. The other advertisement for Kazakhstan, however, was quite nice and appeared to peak the interests of Americans. It was entitled, “Kazakhstan, ever wandered?” and can be viewed below courtesy of youtube
When I saw it in a public place, the woman next to me said she had seen it several times and was curious… It does have a short frame in it, however, that is a bit ominous. Out of the scenic sites of the steppe and the residents of Almaty enjoying a lazy summer day, emerges a scene of four presidents dressed in black walking confidently down the street– presidents Nazarbayev, Kuchma, Putin, and Lukaschenko. Is it supposed to be a subliminal message?
Sean R. Roberts lives in Washington, DC. He is an Associate Professor of International Development at George Washington University (GWU) and the Director of GWU's International Development Studies Program. In addition, Dr. Roberts works as a consultant on democracy and governance development projects around the world as well as on issues related to Central Asia. He has lived in Central Asia on and off since 1989. He has a Masters degree in Visual Anthropology and a Doctorate in Social Anthropology both from the University of Southern California. In addition to conducting extensive research in the Uyghur community of Central Asia, Dr. Roberts also worked for approximately six years at the United States Agency for International Development in Central Asia.