Nazarbayev said: “We Are not with Putin” 

Kazakhstan does not support its closest military, political, and economic ally – Russia. This is what follows from President Nursultan Nazarbayev’s speech at the joint meeting of the Houses of the Kazakhstan Parliament. The West is bound to apprise the message.

Today, on March 5, 2018, Nursultan Nazarbayev has spoken at the joint meeting of the Senate and the Mazhilis of the Kazakhstan Parliament with the address called “The Five Social Initiatives of the President”. According to the leader of the state, it is a new, large-scale project on the way of the social modernization, the rational, yet, at the same time, optimistic undertaking for the benefit of the Kazakhstan people.

Judging by the content of the address, the main target audience of Akorda are the Kazakhstanis in need of housing or of improving the living accommodations, those who live on low income both legal and “shadow” and desire to receive college education for themselves and for their children, to have the possibility to obtain credit financing even if they do not comfort the creditors’ standards, to spend less on heating their houses with solid fuels. In other words, the majority of the country’s citizens.

Since the announced projects do indeed look positive for the population, they are likely to be supported in the country. Moreover, the state propaganda machine will try and make sure everyone knows about them.  And, by the looks of it, in exchange for the loud yet de-facto not too big state investments in the social sphere, Akorda is planning to receive the people’s support for its domestic policies.

We believe, however, that the address has yet another target audience – the collective West, most of all, the USA and the EU (perhaps together with China). Indirectly, the chronology of the events testifies to that.

  • On March 1, 2018, Russian President Vladimir Putin gives yet another extremely bullish speech threatening the West with the new types of nuclear missiles and demonstrating that Russia is not afraid of its external political adversaries being prepared to defend its interests by any means possible.
  • On March 1, 2018, Head of the Mazhilis Nurlan Nigmatullin unexpectedly signs Decree #20 on the joint meeting of the Houses that is to take place on March 5, 2018, in Astana. It is to be published the next day.
  • On March 5, 2018, Nursultan Nazarbayev speaks at the joint meeting of the Houses on the “Five Social Initiatives of the President”. His tone is expressively different from the militant, if not aggressive speech of Vladimir Putin, even though Russian President had promised even more in the social sphere than the Kazakhstan leader of the nation did.

It looks like the address was being prepared in Akorda as a document that had to attract the Kazakhstanis’ attention to Nursultan Nazarbayev’s initiatives on the third modernization of the country, its economy, the social consciousness, to stimulate the citizens, the business, the officials to increase their social responsibilities, to mobilize the population to implement the orders and requests of the leader of the nation. And, initially, the address was likely to have been made before the Nauryz holiday as a present to the people, so to speak.

However, Vladimir Putin’s address that, de-facto, transforms Russia into the direct geopolitical adversary of the West, first of all, the USA and Donald Trump personally as well as the NATO and the EU, has demanded from Kazakhstan to immediately demonstrate to that same West that it does not support its closest military, political, and economic ally.

We have no doubt the Western diplomats will notice that. Therefore, Nazarbayev and the Kazakhstan ruling elite will have many more chances to escape the pressure from the West which, for them, is much more critical than it is for Putin and the Russian ruling elite.

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