UZBEKISTAN: SOVIET SYNDROME IN THE STATE, SOCIETY, AND IDEOLOGY
Farkhad Tolipov, Assistant professor, Political Science Department, National University of Uzbekistan (Tashkent, Uzbekistan)
I believe that post-Sovietism is the aptest way to describe the wide-scale transformations unfolding in the post-Soviet era in the newly independent Central Asian states. It presupposes that certain new, modern institutional qualities of nation- and state-building will appear because of the very natural need to adjust to the existing world order.
Part of society expected that independence would revive, partially or on a larger scale, what can be called pre-Sovietism: a set of features that describe domestic and foreign policy as well as the relations between the former “colonies” that existed even before Soviet power came to these parts of the world.
Meanwhile, everything that should, or could, appear in the form of post-Sovietism and pre-Sovietism was nothing other than neo-Sovietism. This is not a chance phenomenon—it was called to life by political, social, psychological, historical, economic, and geographic reality, factors that were permanently present across this vast territory.
Practically all the former Soviet republics, the CIS members, were affected by the Soviet syndrome which came to the fore as the most obvious phenomenon in Uzbekistan’s state administration-civil society-ideology system.
To assess administration efficiency we should recognize the existence of another problem—the gap between democracy de jure and democracy de facto in Uzbekistan. The former means that the legislative and institutional forms of democratic governance are in place; the latter—that the form has an adequate content, i.e. that the laws are being implemented while the democratic institutions are functioning without hindrance. An analysis, however, reveals a gap between de jure and de facto democracy in Uzbekistan in nine spheres and the presence of eight conceptual dichotomous questions of democratic construction.
This gap obviously has little in common with the course aimed at liberalizing the economic, legal, and spiritual spheres announced back in 1999 by the 14th Session of the Oliy Majlis (parliament) of Uzbekistan. It described the new principle of state- and society-building as: “From a strong state to a strong civil society” which was probably expected to modify one of the main principles of the socioeconomic and political reforms in Uzbekistan during the early period of independence: “the state is the main reformer.”
What are the nine problems and eight conceptual questions?
The first problem is related to the party system. Today we can say with good reason that the process of forming a party system as the key element of civil society is stalling. The parties on the political scene are practically indistinguishable as far as their programs, provisions, and specific political activities are concerned. There is no competition among them—what is more they present no opposition to…………..