Celebrating Tajikistan

It is very sad that the government chose not to mark the 90th anniversary of Tajikistan. It is particularly sad because we really need such anniversaries – anniversaries of real events that nobody is going to dispute – to boost patriotism and a sense of national unity in the country.

Although we have missed the opportunity to celebrate 90 years since the creation of the first explicitly Tajik state, we can still compensate for this by doing several things. First, I think we could replace the Independence Day we observe every year with Tajikistan Day falling on October 14 or October 15, the day when the Soviet Tajikistan was founded. We should be honest with ourselves: we have little to celebrate on Independence Day. Unlike many other nations, we did not fight for independence or put too much effort into becoming independent. Independence was effectively forced upon us at the time when most Tajiks wanted the republic to remain part of the Soviet Union. So, Independence Day is devoid of real meaning. Removing the Independence Day from the national calender and replacing it with the Tajikistan Day could be a way to get a real holiday, the holiday that most people in the country would have no problem understanding and relating to. On this day, we could celebrate the fact that there is a Tajik state. It might even be a good idea to stop observing another meaningful holiday, the Constitution Day, and make the Tajikistan Day last for two days in a row.
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Halloween Horror in Tajikistan. Part Two

Like in previous years, the discussion also happened on Blogiston.tj, a popular local blogging platform.

Sounding a nationalist alarmist note similar to the one featured in Part One, Sitora Yusupova wrote in Tajik:

Original: Чашни холлуин моликияти аврупо мебошад (ба мо расм шудааст, ки ба чуз илм ва хунар дигар амалхоро таклид созем ва худро чун заррае ба аврупоихо монанд бисозем, кани чавони англисе, ки икдом гирифта бошад то наврузро чашн бигирад?)

My translation: Halloween is a European holiday. It becomes more common for us to imitate Western values. Are there any Englishmen who want to celebrate our Navruz?

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Halloween Horror in Tajikistan. Part One

What is the biggest threat to the national and religious identity of Tajiks? Any guesses?

Well, according to social media users in the country, that threat might very well be Halloween. Yes, I am serious. No, most people in Tajikistan have probably never heard of Halloween. But the young people in urban areas know about the holiday. And when these people put on their Halloween costumes, they tick everyone off and become a favourite target for angry nationalist comments on social media.

This happened last year and the year before (also this). This is happening again this year.
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