Thursday, October 12

The White House 58

Kyrgyz parliament house
Pictured, the national parliament building (called "The White House") built initially as Bishkek's communist headquarters in the 1980s. Beautiful brutalism and what is not to love? I think of Rocky IV.

The 2005 Tulip Revolution and the 2010 Kyrgyzstan riots were here - the latter to oust President Bakiyey, whose son, Maxine, split for the UK during the upheaval, taking a whispered two billion and a place in Knightsbridge (Eitan and I debate if it is simply a crime or a cliche). 86 protesters died and Bakiyey fled to Minsk while sentenced, in abstentia, to 24 years prison time in 2013.

In front of the presidential building - pointing at it in fact - is Lenin. It surprises me that the statue not destroyed with the rest at national independence; now, unsurprisingly, it is a tourist point.

Commie background