Monday, November 1

The hidden truth

When I left Baku last time, I left it literally covered in dust (and I mean something more close to a thick glaze of dust) from numerous, ongoing construction and renovation work all around the city (or more so in the main downtown area of the capital). And so during my most recent visit, the city took me by surprise. The dust settled and what was a construction and renovation site only few months ago, was now replaced with pretty alleys, new parks, polished buildings cleaned from years of accumulated dirt (unfortunately that was also inhaled by half of the Baku population while it was done).

And for a very brief moment, I thought to myself that its not all that bad. It looked clean, spacious, beautiful. But just like that I was snapped back into the reality- the hidden truth underneath those pretty looking streets, parks, buildings took over the feeling of brief satisfactory happiness...

Recently, I was approached by a young man from Azerbaijan at one of the conferences I was attending and asked what is the reason for me talking of Azerbaijan the way I usually do. Well, I hope you read this post dear F. (didn't feel disclosing your full name as I thought it might not be appropriate) because this is precisely why I speak of Azerbaijan the way I do. Because good life isn't just about pretty streets, renovated buildings (which I consider good initiative just not as important like say improving the situation with freedom of expression, human rights, and what not), uber expensive boutique shops and 5 star hotels built across the city.

I speak of Azerbaijan this way, because I would very much like to see that moment I shortly was overtaken by, exist for real. I want this country to be fair and just to its people. Its economy be transparent and distributed fairly (rather than used by certain individuals for their personal purposes or stacked away in some foreign banks or simply not accessible to the country en masse). Because I simply want truth and no more hidden reality. 

It might work perfectly for visitors who come to visit Azerbaijan (though that might not be the case anymore, give the recent visa changes) but not for its people. We all know that renovated facades look great (especially at night) but the actual life underneath those facades continues to rotten and fade away. Azerbaijan might have a lot of money and prosper day by day (based on numerous speeches of government officials) but the corruption, lies, distrust and degrading overall approach to the people and general welfare, is only a sign of a spoiled behavior, and definitely not something we should be proud of and pretend as if everything is just absolutely great...  

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