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Northern Italy’s leading daily, La Stampa of Turin, reports on the “Unavoidable Rise of the Beautiful Gulnara,” on Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of Uzbekistan’s autocrat-for-life Islam Karimov. When daddy rules with an iron hand, and you’re the heir apparent, the sky is truly the limit.
Her wishes are orders. Everything she wants, she gets…She graduated from Harvard and took a doctorate in political science from the University of Tashkent, she holds a karate black belt and is a poet, singer, jewelry designer, goes wild over luxury goods, haute couture, and gemstones, she directs the Center for Political Studies of Uzbekistan, and is the founding president of a charitable foundation, founding president of the Forum of Uzbek Culture and Art and Advisor-Minister Plenipotentiary in Uzbekistan’s embassy in Russia, and finally – but most significantly – she is a voracious and ruthless business woman.
Today, according to some analysts, the woman known simply as ‘the daughter’ owns half the country. In 2001, she divorced her first husband, an American of Afghan-Uzbek origin, and set out to build her own empire. Hotels, restaurants, night clubs, a television chain (TV Markaz), a radio station (Earth), a magazine (Bella Terra), a mobile phone company…nothing resists her bulimic impulses…People talk about the “Gulnarization” of Uzbekistani industry. “She owns nothing directly, but everyone knows who is in control.” All this is possible thanks to “daddy” and the disappearance of competitors–the effectiveness of the SNB, the Uzbek secret services, is sadly well known.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Length in days of the sentence Russian blogger Alexei Navalny served for leading an opposition rally last year:
Israeli researchers developed software that evaluates the depression of bloggers.
A teenager in Singapore was convicted of obscenity for posts critical of Lee Kuan Yew, the country’s founding father, that included an image of Lee having sex with Margaret Thatcher.
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“Shelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.”